Eight Affordable Units Isn’t Worth the Loss of Character

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This letter addresses the artist live-work project proposed in Laguna Canyon that will be coming before the City Council soon. I have asked each Council member to consider having the developer scale back the project to the 12-unit concept that was originally proposed to the neighborhood two years ago.

It would be wonderful to have an artist live-work project in Laguna and Laguna Canyon may be the perfect place for it but let’s not have a project that destroys the rural feel of the area, goes against the spirit of the Laguna Canyon Annex Area Specific Plan, and sets a precedent for larger scale development in the canyon. There is a 60-unit storage unit at Big Bend already scheduled to be heard at the Planning Commission (check out the story poles) and this may be only the beginning for requests for development in the canyon.

As proposed, the artist live-work project has a total of 30 units. Only eight of the units will be for low-income renters. That means only eight units will be affordable housing and the other 22 units will be rented out for whatever price the market will bear. I do not believe that having only eight affordable units is worth the price of forever changing the character of the neighborhood and for future threats of out-of-scale development in the canyon.

Johanna Felder, Laguna Beach

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