SF Chronicle Exposes Measure R’s Real Aim – to “Roll Back the Clock”

The offered a high-profile corroboration of Measure R’s true intent – to block growth.

The article called Measure R a “disingenuous” attempt “to pull the rug out from under future projects.”

The article – by the paper’s well-known urban design critic, John King – was headlined, “These development measures are really antigrowth.” It alluded to similar measures in several Bay Area cities, but Berkeley’s Measure R received top billing.

The article contrasted Measure R’s “noble-sounding bullet points” to its real intent – “to roll back the clock” and “erect hurdles to new buildings over 60 feet.”

To read full the article, please .

The Chronicle’s report reflects the growing public understanding that Measure R is an antigrowth wolf in sheep’s clothing. It deploys the familiar ruse of “green-washing” by painting itself as the “Green Downtown” initiative, when in fact, its prohibitive new fees and restrictions on large housing and office projects are so burdensome that they would be financially unfeasible, according to the City’s study of the measure .

No wonder Measure R is opposed by leading environmental, labor, business, civic and professional groups, as well as Berkeley’s top elected officials and many prominent citizens.

To see the extraordinarily broad coalition of those who endorse “No on R,” please click here . We hope you’ll add your name too.

Yard Signs Are Here – Here’s How to Get One

Your yard can help protect Berkeley’s future well-being from Measure R! Join the growing number of residents disp laying the newly arrived “No on R” yard signs.

If you’d like a yard sign, please email your name and address to [email protected] .

The stakes are high, and every citizen’s assistance is important.

Measure R is an anti-growth wolf in sheep’s clothing. It pretends to offer a greener Downtown than we already have, with developers forced to provide even more community benefits than they are currently required to do.

In fact, its draconian constraints would do just the opposite. They would choke off future transit-oriented housing and sustainable development near BART, exacerbating our critical housing shortage and forcing more people into relying on auto commuting and generating more greenhouse gases. The City’s study of Measure R concluded it would conflict with the environmental policies of our Climate Action Plan.

Measure R is a legally flawed 28-page confusion of insertions and deletions to the existing zoning for Berkeley’s Downtown. It was drafted by three self-appointed individuals without public review or community input.

It would overturn our award-winning Downtown Plan, which was developed through an extensive community process involving more than 200 public meetings. The Downtown Plan embodies one of the nation’s strongest sets of environmental building standards and requirements for community benefits.

It’s no surprise that Measure R is opposed by a broad coalition of environmental groups, labor unions, civic organizations, businesses, professional associations and other groups, as well as virtually all of Berkeley’s top elected officials and a large proportion of the city’s community leaders and urban planning experts.

Learn more on our FAQ page and our Why Vote No page .

See the list of opponents on our Endorsements page .

Prominent Architect Assails Measure R

Measure R’s promise to create a greener Downtown is “specious,” says a leading architect in the green building field.

This critique of Measure R was delivered in a Berkeleyside “Opinionator” column by Berkeley resident Henry Siegel, the founding principal at the Siegel & Strain architectural firm, winner of more than 60 design awards, including four Top Ten Green Projects of the Year from the American Institute of Architect’s Committee on the Environment.

In the column published Thursday, Sept. 25, Siegel says Measure R’s promised “fixes” for alleged shortcomings in our current Downtown Plan aren’t fixes at all but fatal flaws that will undo the many successes of the Plan.

“Let’s not “fix” a Downtown Area Plan that isn’t broken,” he writes. “Measure R will not make downtown Berkeley greener.”

To read the full column on Berkeleyide, please click here .

Berkeley Police Association Joins Growing Ranks of No on R Endorsers

The Berkeley Police Association has joined the large coalition of civic, environmental, labor, business and

professional organizations who warn against the disastrous consequences that Measure R would bring.

“The Berkeley Police Association recognizes that Measure R could stifle the Downtown’s welcome revitalization and significantly reduce City revenues needed to ensure public safety and provide other City services,” said Chris Stines, Association President.

The Association’s “No on R” endorsement coincides with the growing community understanding that this stringent anti-growth measure threatens Berkeley’s future well-being in several ways.

One of the biggest losses would be reduced City government revenue, meaning less funding for vital City services, including police and fire. The impacts estimated that the measure could reduce potential City tax revenues by $1.3 million and Berkeley schools revenue by $1 million.

Measure R backers deceptively claim that the measure will force developers to deliver more green community benefits than they provide now under the City’s award-winning Downtown Plan. Don’t be fooled by this green-washing subterfuge. The true impact of Measure R would be fewer benefits because its new fees and requirements are so prohibitive that major new housing and office buildings would be financially infeasible, according to the .

Similarly, Measure R backers falsely claim that the “No on R” campaign is a tool of developers, a claim easily refuted by the broad alliance of organizations and community leaders who have studied Measure R and taken public stands against it:

Organizations:

Individuals:

  • State Senator Loni Hancock (representing Berkeley)
  • Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (representing Berkeley)
  • Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Laurie Capitelli
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Linda Maio
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Darryl Moore
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Susan Wengraf
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Gordon Wozniak
  • East Bay MUD Board President Andy Katz (representing Berkeley)
  • BART Board Director Rebecca Saltzman (representing Berkeley)
  • UC Prof. Robert Reich (former U.S. Secretary of Labor)
  • Downtown Berkeley Association President Susan Medak
  • And scores of others! See longer list here

Berkeley Chamber of Commerce Opposes R – City’s Leading Business Voice

The Berkeley Chamber of Commerce has joined the growing coalition of groups and community leaders who oppose Measure R.

“Defeating this measure is of critical importance to the smart growth and development of downtown,” said Erik Holland, Board President of the Chamber.

The Chamber’s “No on R” endorsement is the latest among leading civic, environmental, labor and professional organizations who recognize that the stringent restrictions of this anti-growth measure would block transit-oriented housing and sabotage Berkeley’s remarkable Downtown revival.

Measure R backers deceptively claim that the “No on R” campaign is a tool of developers.  But their disinformation campaign is easily refuted by the broad alliance of organizations and community leaders who have studied Measure R and concluded that it poses a serious danger to Berkeley’s future well-being.

Organizations:

Individuals:

  • State Senator Loni Hancock (representing Berkeley)
  • Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (representing Berkeley)
  • Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Laurie Capitelli
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Linda Maio
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Darryl Moore
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Susan Wengraf
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Gordon Wozniak
  • East Bay MUD Board President Andy Katz (representing Berkeley)
  • BART Board Director Rebecca Saltzman (representing Berkeley)
  • UC Prof. Robert Reich (former U.S. Secretary of Labor)
  • Downtown Berkeley Association President Susan Medak
  • And scores of others! See longer list here

Measure R backers say the measure will provide green community benefits that are not being delivered by our award-winning Downtown Plan, and that it will save the historic Main Post Office.

Measure R will not deliver any community benefits. In reality, it is an anti-growth Trojan horse painted green. It is 28 pages of legally flawed regulations and prohibitive fees that are so draconian that they would choke off the new housing and office projects that are being proposed for Berkeley’s Downtown. Hundreds of units of transit-oriented housing designed to be located near BART would not get built, resulting in more auto commuting and greenhouse gases, thus undermining the battle against climate change.

Berkeley’s current Downtown Plan incorporates some of the strongest local requirements for green and community benefits in the nation. Measure R would overturn the Downtown Plan, which recently won a prestigious national honor from the American Planning Association – the Achievement Award for a Best Practice.

As for saving the Post Office, Measure R would require that the Post Office building be reserved exclusively for “civic use” if the U.S. Postal Service ceases operations there. The City Council has already approved this requirement, rendering Measure R redundant with regard to the Post Office.

For the facts and evidence supporting the case against Measure R, please see our FAQ .

“No on R” Blends Summer Fun with Election Info at Solano Stroll

Photos by Joseph Taecker-Wyss

One of the best reasons to vote “No on R” was expressed by a Berkeley man who stopped by the “No on R” booth at the Solano Stroll this past Sunday (Sept. 14).

“If you don’t understand it, don’t vote for it,” he said.

His reaction echoed a typical response to the confusing and legally flawed 28 pages of deletions and insertions into the Berkeley zoning code otherwise known as Measure R.

Photos by Joseph Taecker-Wyss

Those who take the time and trouble to understand it find even greater reason to oppose this anti-growth measure whose stringent restrictions would block transit-oriented housing and sabotage Berkeley’s remarkable Downtown revitalization.

Photos by Joseph Taecker-Wyss

Many curious Berkeley voters stopped by the “No on R”  booth, and the vast majority of them acknowledged that they were confused by the conflicting messages from “No on R” and “Yes on R,” especially since both claim to insure a “green” Downtown.

But when they learned the facts, they understood why labor unions, environmental organizations, Democratic Party organizations , professional associations and Berkeley’s top elected officials all belong to the broad community coalition opposed to Measure R.

Here is a sample of the endorsers of “No on R”:

Organizations:

Individuals:

  • State Senator Loni Hancock (representing Berkeley)
  • Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (representing Berkeley)
  • Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Laurie Capitelli
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Linda Maio
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Darryl Moore
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Susan Wengraf
  • Berkeley City Councilmember Gordon Wozniak
  • East Bay MUD Board President Andy Katz (representing Berkeley)
  • BART Board Director Rebecca Saltzman (representing Berkeley)
  • UC Prof. Robert Reich (former U.S. Secretary of Labor)
  • Downtown Berkeley Association President Susan Medak
  • And scores of others! See longer list here

Another Major Endorsement for “No on R” – Democratic Party of Alameda County

The Democratic Party of Alameda County has joined the growing coalition of groups and community leaders who oppose Measure R.

The Alameda County Democratic Party joined the anti-R alliance on Sept. 13 when its Central Committee voted to oppose the ill-conceived, anti-growth measure on the November ballot.

The vote by the county’s umbrella Democratic organization came two days after the ”No on R” vote by the Berkeley Democratic Club, the county’s largest and oldest Democratic club.

Measure R backers deceptively claim that the “No on R” campaign is a tool of developers.  But their disinformation campaign is easily refuted by the broad coalition of labor, environmental and civic organizations that have studied Measure R and concluded that it poses a serious danger to Berkeley’s future well-being.

Organizations that oppose Measure R include:

The leading elected public officials representing Berkeley and community leaders also oppose Measure R:

    • State Senator Loni Hancock (representing Berkeley)
    • Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (representing Berkeley)
    • Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates
    • Berkeley City Councilmember Laurie Capitelli
    • Berkeley City Councilmember Linda Maio
    • Berkeley City Councilmember Darryl Moore
    • Berkeley City Councilmember Susan Wengraf
    • Berkeley City Councilmember Gordon Wozniak
    • East Bay MUD Board President Andy Katz (representing Berkeley)
    • BART Board Director Rebecca Saltzman (representing Berkeley)
    • UC Prof. Robert Reich (former U.S. Secretary of Labor)
    • Downtown Berkeley Association President Susan Medak
  • And scores of others! See longer list here

Measure R backers say the measure will deliver green community benefits that are not being delivered by our award-winning Downtown Plan, and that it will save the historic Main Post Office.

In fact, Measure R is an anti-growth Trojan horse painted green. It is 28 pages of legally flawed regulations and prohibitive fees that are so draconian that they would choke off the new housing and office projects that are being proposed for Berkeley’s Downtown. Hundreds of units of transit-oriented housing designed to be located near BART would not get built, resulting in more auto commuting and greenhouse gases, thus undermining the battle against climate change.

Berkeley’s current Downtown Plan incorporates some of the strongest local requirements for green and community benefits in the nation. Measure R would overturn the Downtown Plan, which recently won a prestigious national honor from the American Planning Association – the Achievement Award for a Best Practice.

As for saving the Post Office, Measure R would require that the Post Office building be reserved exclusively for “civic use” if the U.S. Postal Service ceases operations there. The City Council has already approved this requirement, rendering Measure R redundant with regard to the Post Office.

Another Key Endorsement Against Measure R – Largest & Oldest Democratic Club in Alameda County

The Berkeley Democratic Club – the largest and oldest Democratic club in Alameda County – voted overwhelmingly on Sept. 11 to oppose Measure R, the anti-growth rezoning initiative on the Berkeley ballot in November.

After presentations from both sides and many audience questions, the club agreed by an 82-percent majority to oppose the legally flawed, 28-page measure that would impose prohibitive new requirements on large new housing and office buildings in Berkeley’s Downtown.

The club joins a growing coalition of labor, environmental and civic organizations, as well as community leaders, who oppose Measure R.

Others include:

Organizations:

  • Greenbelt Alliance
  • Transform
  • League of Conservation Voters of the East Bay
  • Alameda County Labor Council (representing 100,000 East Bay workers)
  • Alameda County Building Trades Council (28 affiliated unions)
  • Hotel. Food Service and Gaming Workers Local 2850 (also known as Unite Here!)
  • Downtown Berkeley Association
  • Livable Berkeley
  • Berkeley Design Advocates

Individuals:

  • State Senator Loni Hancock
  • Assemblymember Nancy Skinner
  • Mayor Tom Bates and five other Berkeley City Council members
  • East Bay MUD Board President Andy Katz (representing Berkeley)
  • BART Board Director Rebecca Saltzman (representing Berkeley)
  • UC Prof. Robert Reich (former U.S. Secretary of Labor)
  • and many others

Opponentsrecognize that Measure R’s promises of green community benefits and new jobs with prevailing wages are empty campaign rhetoric. Measure R’s myriad fees and restrictions would kill new housing and other building projects. Measure R would also kill our Downtown revival, block affordable housing and reverse our progress in combatting climate change.

“Measure R is a wolf in sheep’s clothing,” said Andreas Cluver, Executive Board Member of the Alameda County Labor Council, which represents 100,000 East Bay workers and which voted on Sept 8 against the measure. “It claims to support prevailing wage construction jobs, but is full of poison pills that would stop the very projects that are supposed to provide these good jobs.”

Measure R would prevent an estimated 1,300 units of transit-friendly housing units near BART, according to the . This loss of Downtown housing would exacerbate Berkeley’s critical housing shortage, undermine Downtown revitalization and harm the environment by increasing auto commuting and greenhouse gases.

Measure R also would shackle the city with rigid ballot-box planning.Small details and illegal provisions – such as requiring public restrooms in large residential buildings and reducing City flexibility in providing affordable housing – could not be fixed without another election.

For more information, please visit NoOnMeasureR.org .

Alameda County Labor Council Opposes Measure R – Latest in Growing Ranks of Opposition

The opposition to Measure R – the Downtown Berkeley rezoning initiative – was joined by a major ally Monday night, Sept. 8, when the Alameda County Labor Council voted to oppose the measure. The Council represents 100,000 East Bay workers.

Labor leaders recognize that Measure R’s promises of new jobs with prevailing wages for workers are empty campaign rhetoric. Measure R’s prohibitive development requirements would kill new housing and other building projects, along with the new jobs they would bring.

“Measure R is a wolf in sheep’s clothing,” said Andreas Cluver, Executive Board Member of the Labor Council and Secretary Treasurer of the Alameda County Building & Construction Trades Council. “It claims to support prevailing wage construction jobs, but is full of poison pills that would stop the very projects that are supposed to provide these good jobs.”

Other organizations opposing the measure include:

Individuals opposed to Measure R include Berkeley’s leading elected officials – including State Senator Loni Hancock, Assemblymember Nancy Skinner, Mayor Tom Bates with five other members of the Berkeley City Council, UC Prof. Robert Reich (former U.S. Secretary of Labor), East Bay MUD Board President Andy Katz, BART Board Director Rebecca Saltzman and many others.

Measure R would kill our Downtown revival, block affordable housing and reverse our progress in combatting climate change.

It is 28 pages of anti-growth regulations that would prevent hundreds of transit-friendly housing units near BART, according to the . This loss of Downtown housing would exacerbate Berkeley’s critical housing shortage, undermine Downtown revitalization and harm the environment by increasing auto commuting and greenhouse gases.

Measure R also would shackle the city with rigid ballot-box planning.Small details and illegal provisions – such as requiring public restrooms in large residential buildings and reducing City flexibility in providing affordable housing – could not be fixed without another election.

For more information, please visit NoOnMeasureR.org.