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Canyon Residents Object to Project’s Size

Editor,

(A similar version went to City Council members.)

We are in favor of artist work live uses in our neighborhood. We are opposed to the use of the artist work live concept we’ve always supported being co-opted and used to promote a 30-unit apartment building and industrial workspace. We are opposed to a new zone being created out of thin air for such a purpose, one that does not match any reasonable definition of “light industrial”, or “small scale” or “rural seclusion”. Zones were put in place to define development patterns. Changing the zoning shouldn’t be defined by popularity.

The ordinance allowing this and the project itself have not had an adequate CEQA analysis, especially taking into consideration the “reasonably foreseeable” cumulative impact this project and the proposed homeless shelter expansion, the proposed self -storage facility, and the proposed parking garage for LCAD will have on the surrounding area.

This project sets the precedent that will allow similar 30-unit apartments all along this stretch of the canyon on multiple M1b parcels.

The proposed location is now a residence in a row of residences. It was not that long ago that one of those residences was converted to the Laguna Koi Ponds. That is our expectation for how development should proceed along this row of residences. That is the expectation we trust you’ll respect and honor so that our neighborhood character can be preserved.

The City Council can find a better location for this concept than on a small narrow parcel, in a residential neighborhood, sandwiched between Laguna Canyon Road and Laguna Creek. This flood prone section of the creek should be a location for habitat restoration, not a collection of trash dumpsters and a 47-vehicle parking lot.

We believe you cannot vote on this project without understanding our neighborhood. We invite you to come walk our streets anytime between now and your vote on Tuesday. If possible walk at sunset and hear the native Pacific tree frogs in the creek. When you arrive take note of the traffic patterns from Laguna Canyon Road into and out of Sun Valley Drive. Now imagine this same turn with 47 private vehicles and countless commercial vehicles accessing the project.

The officers and the majority of residents in our neighborhood are in favor of downsizing this project.

John Albritton, John Hamil, Ken Lauer, Paulette Cullen

The authors are officers of the Laguna Canyon Property Owners Association.

 

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