Hypoxia via exsanguination means bleeding out without being aware or able to avoid it. Out of time, the system shuts down due to lack of oxygen or life force. Similarly, Laguna’s way of avoiding change has led to too many relevant boarded-up properties. The aesthetic difference between nature and ghost town is widening, and thus, becomes increasingly disturbing with every day that goes by.
Don’t be fooled, it is not the Village, but our beautiful nature that still attracts tourists and keeps residents content without having to look at downtown. People are visiting Laguna but don’t spend much time or money because there is nothing interesting or engaging enough in town other than a vibe of abandonment. Without realizing that our town is dead, there will be nothing left to fight for.
The Downtown Specific Plan (DSP) is not the answer either. Even if the council would have voted last council meeting for the “30 years in the making DSP,” it would take the Coastal Commission almost two years to approve it. It is insane to spend energy on a plan that would surely not be realized within the next three generations and probably end up as another parking lot fewer cars.
Laguna needs life-support yesterday. Watch at least some parts of the seven hours of our City Council meeting of Dec. 17, 2019. It shows you the great love and passion for our city and the unbelievable knowledge of many participants that collectively could get us out of any situation. But at the same time, the viewer will likely get sick to their stomach due to the incapability of the people in charge to take this knowledge/wisdom and implement it streamlined in one direction. Take a look above the mountain of micromanaging petty issues. Admit failure so we can move in the opposite direction. The Laguna way got this town in trouble, now it needs a Laguna way out of this mess and to not rely on big state agencies and regulations to be the shapers of this Village.
Michaell Magrutsche, Laguna Beach