North Central Needs Assessment
Our goal is to create an equitable community where all can participate, prosper and reach our full potential.
The policy question is how to create these conditions by removing barriers, changing systems and processes, and dedicating resources. We start by centering the voices of our community - drawing on the wisdom of our lived experiences and community data to identify our needs and aspirations.
I'm very proud to collaborate with a group of resolute neighbors to organize a North Central Neighborhood Listening Session at St. James AME Zion Church. Over 50 neighbors showed up, with standing room only. Our key message: Don't agonize! Organize!
North Central Neighborhood Data
The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) reports that the North Central census tract 6062 has the highest pollution burden in the City of San Mateo, citing high risk of exposure to lead in homes, traffic impacts, ground water threats, and hazardous waste.
The Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG), the regional planning agency and council of governments (COG) and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the transportation planning, financing, and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area, identified North Central, North Shoreview and Shoreview in the Plan Bay Area 2050 as an Equity Priority Communities.
The San Mateo County Get Health Neighborhood Data portal reports that North Central has:
the highest percentage of households receiving food stamps in the City of San Mateo (15% in Census Tract 6062).
relatively more overcrowded households compared to other San Mateo neighborhoods (13.6-14% in Census Tracts 6060 & 6062).
the highest percent of households that are rent burden East of 101 (62% in Census Tracts 6062).
The City of San Mateo Data Transparency Portal (2020-present) reported North Central has 2 collision hotspots on Delaware/Tilton and Poplar/Humboldt - including all collision categories: pedestrian, bicycle, hit-and-run, injury, and DUI. Between 2017-2021 there were 30 bicycle involved collisions in the neighborhood, more than any other neighborhood in the City.
Environmental Justice in Local Land Use Planning
Governor Brown signed SB 1000 in 2016 to facilitate transparency and public engagement in local governments’ planning and decision making processes.
North Central, like many other low-income communities and communities of color, has a disproportionate burden of pollution and associated health risks. SB 1000 is an environmental justice law that aims to correct inequities by reducing the environmental health burdens experienced by disadvantaged communities and ensuring community input is considered in decisions that affect us. North Central is the only neighborhood in the City of San Mateo that meets the criteria of a "disadvantaged community" under SB 1000.
The City of San Mateo's General Plan 2040 is underway and SB 1000 requires the City to take steps to reduce harmful pollutants and the associated health risks in North Central (an environmental justice community), by creating goals, policies and actions to promote equitable access to health-inducing benefits, such as healthy food options, housing, public facilities, and recreation.