At last night’s city council meeting, council member Kevin Mullin voiced his concern of “rumors” that the Lowe’s store east of Route 101 might close, and that Walmart already has its sights set on that space.
Mullin said that Lowe’s imminent failure to succeed in that location and Walmart’s interest were both “rumors” at this point. Yet he was adamant in expressing the negative impacts that Walmart could have on the South City business community.
"It would be a real game-changer for the smaller retailers in our community," Mullin said. He also said he "vehementally opposes" the arrival of Walmart in South San Francisco, and urged his fellow council members and the city attorney to stay apprised of the issue.
Scott Hart, a Local government relations manager for northern San Mateo County and South City gave a detailed presentation on the replacement of pipeline 132 in South San Francisco and Colma.
The purpose of the project is to modernize the line with remote-controlled valves, increase thickness of the pipeline wall to withstand pressure exceeding 1,000 pounds per square inch, and to x-ray test the line. Hart said these measures will make the pipeline "state of the art" and the safest of its kind in any PG&E service area.
Construction on the northern section of the pipeline will begin next week. That section of the line will begin at Mission Rd and Chestnut Blvd, move west on Mission, north on Lawndale Blvd, east on Hillside Blvd, and end at Holly Ave.
Construction and repaving will transpire on the following schedule:
- Mission construction: end of July to early Sept.
- Lawndale and Hillside construction: mid-Sept. to mid-Oct
- Lawndale and Hillside paving: mid-Oct. to end of Oct.
- Mission paving: end of Oct. to mid-Nov.
- Project completion: by end of Nov.
Hart said businesses and residents will be notified via recorded phone calls or otherwise, when construction is to begin in their proximity. PG&E plans to finish construction near El Camino High School before the school year begins on Aug. 15.
Mike Lappen, the city's economic development coordinator, presented on the state of the bioscience industry. In June, city representatives attended the Bio International Convention in Boston, where they sponsored the state of California pavilion.
He said that although the industry was negatively affected by the country's economic recession, biotech employment did not take a significant dip, especially in comparison to the hit the computer industry took. South City's 106 life sciences companies employ about 13,000 people.
Among the statistics Lappen cited were that over a quarter of the city's assessed valuation comes from the biotech industry and 40% of San Mateo County's industrial space is in South San Francisco. Lappen said that future campuses east of Route 101 are likely to be built with higher stories because the industry uses fewer "wet labs" and more computer space than in the past.
Lappen called South City the center of biotechnology in the US, and even the world.
The council also unanimously approved the following agenda items:
- Resolution approving an agreement with Ross Recreation Equipment Company, Inc. for the purchase and installation of Playground Equipment and Site Improvements at Siebecker Center in an amount not to exceed $131,070.
- Resolution approving the Memorandum of Understanding for the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 39 Unit dated July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2014.
- Resolution amending the 2012-2013 Fiscal Year Budget Table of Organization for the Economic and Community Development Department adding the position of Community Development Specialist and deleting the position of Community Development Coordinator and revising the salary schedule for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Unit.
- Resolution Acknowledging the Separate Legal Existence of the Successor Agency to the Redevelopment Agency of the City of South San Francisco
- Resolution increasing the number of Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee (BPAC) members from five (5) to seven (7) members and motions appointing additional members.
- Resolution awarding the construction contract to Kone, Inc. of San Leandro, CA for the Magnolia Senior Center Elevator Refurbishing Project (Project No. pf1031) in an amount not to exceed $103,450 and amending the 2012-2013 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) budget by $55,795.
- Resolution of the City Council, acting as the Housing Successor, notifying the Successor Agency of the City’s request to include commitments for the expenditure of unspent housing bond proceeds for affordable housing projects and housing bond debt service payments on the recognized obligation payment schedule (ROPS)