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Johnson Drive Big Box Initiative Gathers Required Signatures

The petition drive for an initiative to limit the size of retail stores in the proposed Johnson Drive Economic Development Zone (JDEDZ) has gathered over 7,000 signatures from Pleasanton citizens. The initiative was then submitted to the Pleasanton Registrar of Voters and City Clerk on June 13th for approval to be placed on the November 8 General Election Ballot.

From here, the Registrar and Clerk have 30 days to verify the signatures, and then the initiative will be submitted to the City Council at either their July or August meetings.

The Johnson Drive Initiative, sponsored by the Citizens for Planned Growth (CFPG), calls for a limit of 50,000 square feet on any retail store wanting to be a part of the JDEDZ. When placed on the November ballot, it will ask citizens to vote “Yes” if they want to see a limit on the size of any retailer in the JDEDZ, or “No” if they do not. If the “Yes” vote prevails, a large Big Box store such as Costco (averaging 140,000 to 160,000 square feet) could not be included in the JDEDZ plans.

“We have heard a lot of comments from Pleasanton citizens about Costco in the JDEDZ—mostly against the Big Box, but also some for it,” said Bill Wheeler, head of CFPG, “Now it is up to the City Council to approve putting the measure on the ballot and give everyone the opportunity to express their opinions on this important issue through their votes. We are confident that this will easily be accomplished in the time frame we have until the election.”

“We want to thank the team members of Citizens for Planned Growth who worked so tirelessly to gather the signatures from Pleasanton voters. They did a great job in a short amount of time,” Wheeler said.

“And we want to thank the citizens of Pleasanton who, during this busy political season, took the time to learn about our initiative and joined the effort to get their voices heard.”

The Pleasanton Planning Commission has been discussing the Johnson Drive Economic Development Zone since 2014, and the idea of including a Costco and Costco Gas Station was introduced in 2015. Since then, opposition to the plan has developed, and the CFPG was formed to formalize the actions necessary to make this particular zoning change process more responsive to the will of the public.

 

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