UPDATE: A Letter From New Property Owner Marshal Rothman

This is an email received at the Preserve Fairfax email address from the new owner of the Wall Property, Marshal Rothman. In it, he states some of his intentions regarding development.  Unedited and posted with permission.  Feel free to comment below.

(For background information, please see the Fairfax Wall Property Fact Sheet)


Hi Guys,

I would have introduced myself sooner but for my busy schedule and limited competence with the internet. Fortunately a friend showed me your website.

My name is Marshal Rothman and In reading your page I am struck by how much I agree with. Maybe I should start with some background on myself. I grew up in San Francisco . I studied Marine Biology at CSU/SF. I began as a street artist making jewelry then as a laborer and eventually  “hammering nails” as a carpenter .  .

I am quite proud of my record in the building and development industry especially in San Luis Obispo and south of Carmel on the coast. In San Luis Obispo I was able to trade with Shell Oil and later Phillips and Chevron to gain control of over 1000 acres that they had planned to strip mine . I designed and presented a relatively new (at that time) concept “Cluster Development” to what was a decidedly “No Growth” board . Baron Canyon Ranch and The Phillips Ranch were unanimously approved thereby green belting fully 90% of the land and preserving the 101 Viewshed . I created only 30 parcels  all of which were  surrounded  by open space and preserved critical habitat for a number of endangered  plants and animals.

In Carmel my Rocky Creek Ranch development put just 10 parcels on 600 acres utilizing the existing roads to minimize impact and again preserving critical habitat as well as the highway 1 Viewshed. In that development I unsuccessfully tried to introduce another new concept known as “Transfer Density Credits” which would have retired development on ocean front lots by moving those owners to the east out of sight on less sensitive land. I regret that the owners of those parcels found my persuasive skills wanting however the ground broken did result in other successful use down the road.

I  have been designing and building energy efficient systems for long before they came to the forefront although arguably conservation has always been ,and will always be, paramount to our and our planets continued health. I have been in the construction business for 40 years and have been a licensed General Contractor for over 20. The fact is that it has only been in the last 100 years that our inventions have allowed our peoples to be so wasteful with our resources . Pioneers in the old west did not waste like we do . They were reminded every day how valuable and fleeting water was when they were carrying it up to the cabin in a bucket.

Moving forward you should know that I am a Certified Green Building Professional and a Green Point Rater. That’s correct I am one of those guys who the Fairfax Planning Department requires you have go over your plans to insure they have above 50pt credits for building in a sustainable and efficient manner. Not only am I well versed in the various materials and construction techniques needed to create a sustainable, energy efficient home but also  those that produce a chemical free environment for people and pets living in it. I  try to tackle some of the areas where we are needing improvement  by designing my own systems .

In the best of all worlds I would be in a financial position to donate this land . Unfortunately the financial realities associated with years of recession and my chosen pursuit of lower density (and less profitable ) projects has not left me so flush. The next best thing to my mind would be to have a capable experienced contractor design  a coordinated project which would ,as much as possible, take into consideration all of the disparate interests for a best possible outcome. A wise man once said that “if at the end of the day no one is completely happy you have achieved a fair balance”.

It is my intention to showcase my designs for water conservation and recycling systems ,along with my complimentary design for storing solar power for later use ,(without polluting lead acid batteries,) in  every home built there, one of which will be my own . I believe I can build houses that achieve a “Net Zero” energy signature as well as an 80% improvement in  water use , a 95% if not 100% reduction in trash haul off , healthy indoor air quality , substantial reduction in use of non renewable materials in construction and significant reduction in the carbon signature related to the production and delivery of those materials. I intend to accomplish all these things in a modern ,stylish ,livable package that I can bring to market in the same  price range as those homes built in a conventional manner. In short I intend to show  that there is no reason to continue to use those substandard practices that have been contributing to our problems for years.

At present I am attempting to clarify the configuration of the various parcels that have been the product of years of buying , selling and subdividing . Once that is done I intend to have  meetings with planning and the community so that I might understand the concerns and issues my end designs must consider. Nothing is going to be slipped by . I operate in the light of day. Now since you asked (and even if you didn’t) at present I do not anticipate the need for further subdivision ! Let me say that again … At present I do not anticipate asking for any increase in  the number of lots ! The benefits of a coordinated all encompassing plan rather than a piecemeal process can allow for a financially viable project without the need for an increase in density. This having been said ,and understanding we are just beginning ,there are many things that can cause an adverse impact and reevaluation ,some known and some not.

So we begin… welcome to the party one and all…. please feel free to contact me with any questions or suggestions.

Marshal Rothman

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