(This was also addressed to council members.)
Regarding the decision about the parklet on lower Park Avenue, we register a vote of no.
We love the idea of outdoor spaces to enjoy the ocean view, grab a quick bite to eat, or wait in a lovely place for friends, just not on a road that our family and others have used for years to access Park Avenue and drive to our home.
This important artery to homes above the village and Top of the World deserves to be investigated further, perhaps by use of a strip across the street to count cars using the street. It is busier than you may realize.
When the parklet was installed as a trial, southbound commuter traffic diverted to Legion overflowed the left hand turn pocket there, blocking the southbound lane of Coast Highway. As you may know, Forest Avenue is always busy and slow and blocked with people waiting for a parking slot and not practical for commuters.
As victims of the 1993 fires in Laguna Beach, we also want to point out the importance of all routes of egress from homes in the hills. During that fire, all streets were clogged and motorists were evacuating to Coast Highway regardless of one-way signs. All roads to get down to Coast Highway are important!
As a possible site of a parklet please consider a portion of the underused cobblestone area or the other hardscape area in Main Beach Park, where the view of the ocean and the people watching is spectacular. Also, since we don’t mind giving up a few parking spaces, another spot that could use some beautification would be the parking lot on the corner of Glenneyre and Mermaid next to the Broadway restaurant. All or some of that lot could be a small park with landscaping, hardscaping, and benches or tables and chairs. That sunny leafy parcel is close to many food sources and is very central to the downtown.
Please consider these alternative ideas and we thank you very much for caring about our downtown ambiance.
Cort and Diane Kloke, Laguna Beach