Prevent one of the largest bars in Marin County from opening in Sun Valley School District

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Prevent one of the largest bars in Marin County from opening in Sun Valley School District

This petition had 169 supporters

Quiet Enjoyment San Rafael Neighbors Association started this petition to Planning Division City of San Rafael

BREAKING NEWS:   City of San Rafael didn’t follow ABC norms! This location is 50 feet from homes. ABC will not license a new retail location within 100 feet of a residence unless the applicant can establish that the operation of the proposed premises will not interfere with the quiet enjoyment of the property by residents. (Section 23789 and Rule 61.4).  Beer Garden under a home???

San Rafael is a special place, it is safe, has a great quality of life and is home to incredible schools.  Don't turn San Rafael into "HELL SQUARE", Marin. There is a plan to open a bar, one of the largest in Marin County (8,375 square feet in an 11K square foot lot...with no parking), around 1 mile away from the Sun Valley School District. This bar plans to have outdoor seating, live music and is situated underneath several homes in a residential neighborhood. It is also located adjacent, to several streets that are residential, and will cause severe noise impact. Parent with with students that attend Sun Valley School district and other local schools, have children who are directly above the bar (50 ft away).  The bar will be called Pond Farm Brewing, and will be located at 1848 4th, St (formerly Wooden Duck..a furniture store).

But Uber will magically not require parking....There is already a crisis in San Francisco with Uber double parking and causing congestion.  Imagine a small artery with elementary school students, cars, delivery trucks, Uber, Pedestrians and commuters all trying to wedge into a narrow two lane road.  Disaster!

Children in elementary school typically go to bed between 7-8pm, and the bar will be open past those hours, disturbing the residents nearby.  This could have a severe impact on the ability of children to sleep and do well in school.  Additionally, there could be a significant impact to children riding their bikes to school.  See this map for route elementary students travel, it is directly through the bar. Moms and dads dropping their children off and picking them up from school, will also be traveling through bar on narrow rode, because of the traffic issues with the location and lack of parking and alcohol.

Normally Food and Beverage service establishments in San Rafael require 1 space for each 50 sq. ft of floor area.  They are 167.5 parking spots shy of this?  Where do you think these patrons will park?  Other business parking lots and where neighbors have parked for years in front of their house.

Neighborhood residents will have parking spaces taken by residents of the bar. You can help prevent the opening of one of the largest bars in Marin County history, less than a mile away from school, by signing this petition and by contacting the City of San Rafael and telling them this isn't right for your community.  Ask them to move to a more suitable location like the old Pizza Orgasmica Brewery.  Why are they putting a bar, that belongs in downtime, below homes with families, a location with no parking spots and no parking garages?  Doesn't pass the smell test!

There is already an epidemic in San Rafael forming in downtown for homelessness, and often mentally ill and intoxicated homeless pass out on the neighboring streets and parks to this location.  Having yet, another establishment serving alcohol, over 10+ in less than a mile, is only going to exacerbate this tragic issue, that needs real city leadership.

There is real fire safety hazard for the residents of El Camino.  The location will cause severe traffic congestion, and if there is a fire on El Camino, it is possible fire trucks will not be able to reach the residents.

Breweries create odor that diminish the quality of life of residents nearby.  Breweries are often shut down because of complaints from nearby residents:  Also Breweries are very dangerous, they emit CO2 gas, which kills.  Many people have died in Brewery accidents. And Micro-Breweries have four times the accident rates of larger breweries.  This is unsafe to put below homes!

Milling grain can also cause explosions, while rare, they can be very serious.  Homes are located 60 feet above the location and the explosion, could immediately engulf the houses.  This is mentioned by the Planning Department of the City of Augusta, GA here:  Grain handling – if milling grain caution must be used to prevent “grain explosions”.  You can read more about Grain Explosions here:

Prevent a Quadruple Threat to the Community:  Noise, Parking, Crime/Safety(including rare chance of milling explosion), and Odor/Toxic Gas (Carbon Dioxide and Carbon Monoxide), 50ft under resident's homes!

Additional Actions you can take:

  • Join the Legal Defense Fund:  More on this soon.....!
  • Inform Mom's and Children riding their bikes through this area of a threat to their safety!
  • File a Preemptive Complaint against Alcoholic Beverage License Application:  You can also email them at  You can also call Kim Svinth and tell them this is not a good choice for the location.
  • Attend upcoming City of San Rafael Planning appeal meeting:
  • Share this petition on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Nextdoor, Pinterest, Snapchat and any other social network you are on.  Use the following hashtags:  #nowestendbar, #sanrafael #noise #sleep #children #hellsquare #hellsquaremarin
  • Write to the Mayor of San Rafael, Gary Phillips:
  • Get involved with Bay Area MADD (Mother's Against Drunk Driving) and tell them your concerned about the safety of your children in the community as the ride bikes to school through bar's path:
  • Write to Alicia Giudice, planner in charge of approving project:,,  Please call them as well:
  • Send a message to the Chief of Police in San Rafael, Diana Bishop, telling her you think this decreases the safety of the community:
  • Ask the city why they are not enforcing the zoning for the West End:  "Limits on drive-up facilities and late-night activity protect the livability in the West End Village, and promote an attractive pedestrian setting."  Alternate locations like Pizza Orgasmica exist, but they are more expensive to rent.  Why aren't these locations in the downtown being used?
  • Contact Damon Connolly, Board of Supervisors  3501 Civic Center Drive
    Room 329
    San Rafael, CA 94903
    Phone: (415) 473-7354
    Fax: (415) 473-3645
  • Contact the Owner's of the Wooden Duck and ask them to find other buyers for the property, and to respect the ABC Norms of not putting Alcohol Serving Establishments within 100 ft of residential areas.
  • Eric Gellerman
  • Amy Frances Ferber

    Owner address:  1823 Eastshore Hwy, Berkeley, CA.  94710

    Telephone:  510-848-3575  (Berkeley store) 

  • Contact the West End Neighbors Association and ask them to do scientific surveys of the community before they say, they, speak for the community:  Tell them you want them to accurately represent the interests of the neighborhood.

  • Contact the Real Estate Broker Dirck Brinckerhoff:  Telephone: 415-446-4222 Email:  Tell him to get a more suitable client for the building.
  • Preemptively file a zoning lawsuit if you are affected:  If residents affected by the project believe the city is not taking the zoning seriously, they can litigate. 
  • Contact the Department of Public Works in San Rafael and ask them to do a traffic study about the impact of the largest bar in San Rafael, with no-parking less, 1 mile away from Sun Valley Elementary, and by the busiest rode, Miracle Mile, in Marin County:, Department of Public Works, (415) 485-3355.
  • Contact all local news media and tell them you are outraged at what is happening:  Bay Area News, SF Gate: Marin Independent Journal:  
  • Contact Fire Chief Christopher Gray:  Tell him the location is a hazard for fire safety (no way to evacuate such a large building with no parking on a busy street).  Residents in near by residential outlets could be prevented from Fire Trucks accessing their house due to the congestion this bar would offer.
  • Contact America Homeowner Alliance:  Tell them you need help protecting your home.
  • Contact Joanne Webster, San Rafael Chamber of Commerce:  
  • Help the Chamber of Commerce find suitable, non-alcohol serving businesses for a residential area near a school.
  • E-mail:
    Phone 415-454-4163 ext. 101
  • File a Complaint with County of Marin Environmental Health about Odor from Brewery and toxic elements near homes, and exhausted underneath homes:
  • Contact the Southwest EPA Region and tell them you are concerned about potentially toxic fumes (Carbon Monoxide and Carbon Dioxide),  being released under residential homes (less than 50 ft away):

 Reading Material (What really happens when a bar is close to homes):

Petition Closed

This petition had 169 supporters