Interesting article in the Indy on undergrounding and how it will improve safety in some cases.
Yes utility poles and lines do block the views or spoil the views of Laguna’s unique and wonderful vistas. So undergrounding makes good sense to preserve and protect our precious views and for a lot of other reasons. However, there at least a 100 overgrown non-native trees really destroying both public and private view sheds for every utility pole standing in a view shed. Unfortunately it will cost the city (read taxpayers) and a lot of homeowners big bucks to do the undergrounding. Conversely, it will only cost a small fraction of that amount of money to have a fair, effective, economical, city enforced view preservation/restoration ordinance.
It is way past time for the city to get serious and develop and enact a really strong ordinance that will encourage and if necessary force people, who have let their vegetation go crazy and destroy public and private views sheds, to remove or control the offending vegetation. The necessary view ordinance should be similar to the weed abatement ordinance. Basically, that is, after being notified of the problem, remove it yourself or the city will do it and put the cost on your property tax bill.
I know the various committees and councils over the years have struggled with this huge problem but they have failed because they have tried to please, or appease, everyone. This is not possible as has been demonstrated over the last 25 plus years. While wasting time and money the offending vegetation has grown ever more damaging except for the few responsible owners who, once recognizing the problems they have created, have taken it upon themselves to remove or control their overgrown vegetation.
Dave Connell, Laguna Beach