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April 15, 2009 > Letter to the Editor: Masonic Homes flatlands development response

Letter to the Editor: Masonic Homes flatlands development response

In response to Simon Wong's article in the March 18th issue of the Tri-City Voice. Regarding the recent public meetings held in Union City by Masonic Homes soliciting input on their proposal to develop the flatlands portion of their property on Mission Boulevard, I would like to make the following correction. No proposal has been made by Masonic Homes or Perkins + Will to construct "soft-story" single family homes. The comment regarding "soft-story" buildings typical of San Francisco neighborhoods came from a member of the public during the public comment period.

What is in fact being considered for the northern most portion of the site, referred to as Parcel A, are 2- and 3-story townhome type structures. As a building type they have no "soft-story" (this condition having been prohibited by code for more than a couple of decades) and would be constructed in compliance with the latest edition of the California Building Code with special emphasis on lateral or seismic stability and the adjacency of the Hayward fault. It is the intention of Perkins + Will to design, and for Masonic Homes to provide, buildings of the highest structural integrity using the most current structural codes and construction methods. In addition, both Masonic Homes of California and Perkins + Will are committed to creating a design which honors and respects the existing campus, site and community, sets a new standard for sustainable design and which will be a source of pride to both Masonic Homes California and the larger Union City community.

If your readers would like to learn more about our conceptual plans there will be another public open house on Thursday, April 30, from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. at Union City Sports Center, 31224 Union City Boulevard, Union City. The presentation is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. with public comment/Q&A to follow.

In conclusion we want to acknowledge Mr. Wong's thoughtful and continued coverage as we work with City Council, Planning Commission, and Union City residents to create plans for the flatlands area that benefit the entire community.

Gerry Tierney AIA, Senior Associate
Perkins + Will

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