I live have lived across from Montage hotel and beach for 15 years. When the hotel was built, a public ramp to the beach was installed with a steep public access ramp. By code, a second much less steep (ADA ) handicapped ramp was installed 15 years ago with full approval by the Coastal Commission, and the city of Laguna Beach. For the last two years, the handicapped ramp has been chained off preventing access to the handicapped ramp. A sign was posted saying ramp “closed due to seasonal erosion”
I have seen several accidents by people with canes, wheelchairs and even baby strollers holding infants occur when trying to negotiate the steeper ramp as they are unable to use the handicapped ramp.
It will be the third summer with no handicapped access to Montage public beach. It has been over two years now and nobody has fixed the problem. I myself have fallen with a stroller with toddlers and barely saved the kids.
All agencies have been informed numerous times by me and others with no answers. As near as I can discern, the responsibility rests with the city of Laguna Beach ( not Montage hotel ) and there seems to be some kind of petulance between the city and the Coastal Commission. The beach armoring was already permitted 15 years ago and needs to be repaired. I’ve spoken and emailed city planner Scott Drapkin, [email protected]; and Andrew Willis, Coastal Commission, enforcement division, [email protected]
Enough! The handicapped must be allowed access to the beach. People are being hurt.
Sean Schlueter, Laguna Beach