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Surely a Compromise Exists

I am writing to you regarding the proposed Longi live/work project in Laguna Canyon.  I am appealing to you today as a Laguna Beach real estate professional, a board member of the Laguna Canyon Foundation and as a passionate admirer of all things beautiful about Laguna Beach.

I have been following the progression of the Longi live/work project with interest and concern. On one hand, I applaud the concept of a live/work facility to support artists in our community.  We owe so much to these gifted, visionary people who have shaped the culture and beauty of Laguna Beach since its inception.  It is only right that we pay back for the countless contributions of the artist community and promote their continued involvement through affordable housing and work space.  It is with great pride that I see the city work with such conviction to create an enclave for artists.

On the other hand, I am disheartened with the sheer size and scope of the proposed structure.  Laguna Canyon represents one of the jewels of the city – no, one of the jewels of Southern California – and has long been the target for would-be developers.  The open space, landscape, wildlife, vegetation and undeveloped hillsides of Laguna Canyon continue to bring awe to long-time residents and first-time visitors alike. It is a fragile, precious treasure that needs to be protected.  For decades, concerned citizens of Laguna Beach and dedicated conservationists have battled to retain what nature created in Laguna Canyon.

I urge the Council to reconsider this proposal in the context of the precedent it would establish for future projects in the canyon.  Surely there can be a compromise that provides a domicile for our artists without conflicting with the intent of the Laguna Canyon Annexation Area Specific Plan, which is to protect the Canyon’s natural beauty.  We owe this to the residents, to the artists, to the visitors of this amazing city and to future generations.

Dave Csira, San Clemente

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