Shelter Worse Than a Natural Disaster



(This letter also went to the City Council.)

First of all we’d like to  thank each and every one of you for your years of commitment, dedication and endless hours of hard work in helping preserve the tremendous attributes that we all love about Laguna Beach.

As 45-year residents and homeowners the past 20 years on Castle Rock Road, it’s needless to say we love living here. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t thank God for the privilege of being able to live in this beautiful place. Even while living through the horrible fires and floods, but ever since the “temporary” shelter opened, it’s been a nightmare. Worse than any natural disaster. We have had homeless strangers wandering up and down Castle Rock Road at all hours of the day and night, lingering on our property, sleeping under trees along the sides of the road, as well as in the hills around us.

Trash bags heaped up along the fences, shopping carts, empty beer cans and liquor bottles strewn along the road, numerous emergency sirens blasting en route to the shelter, street fights, drunken screaming at all hours of the night, and perhaps worst of all, the cigarettes that are being smoked by the homeless and chucked onto the side of the canyon as they walk into town to start their “work day” begging from residents and visitors alike for “spare change.” This increased fire hazard alone should be in and of itself enough for the council to put an end to this insane project immediately.

It’s shocking the council is even considering the proposed 41-unit “low income” apartment complex or as it’s being politically pitched, permanent supportive housing and Alternative Sleeping Location at 20652 Laguna Canyon Road. It’s nothing more than a veiled attempt to build a high density apartment building in the canyon. Why not take a little chunk from one of the city’s other open spaces or parks, say Heisler, Bluebird, or Alta Laguna and build an ASL apartment there?

If this new apartment building is approved, it’ll be the end of canyon life as we know it. We beg you, please do not approve the 20652 Laguna Canyon Road project, in any way, shape or form.

Michael and Kimberly Fowlkes, Laguna Beach

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  1. This development is not a thinly veiled anything. It is a completely transparent attempt by a respected nonprofit organization to help homeless people to have stable housing and a place of their own to live their lives. If anything, it will reduce and even eliminate the problems you have experienced if these were committed by homeless individuals. There is well-documented data to back up the reasons to get behind supportive housing. It works. Come to the town hall meeting Friday night 4/11 at 7 p.m. at the Neighborhood Congregational Church sanctuary and ask all the questions as you want. Nothing is being concealed from anyone. The only disaster is willful ignorance on this topic.


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