The Laguna Beach Keystone Kops – pardon, the City Council – are once more dashing about, raising much dust but covering little ground while chasing the decades-old village entrance eidolon, throwing to the winds a quarter-million here and a half-million there, hoping that paying big money to strangers will cause an equivalently great, epiphanous, vision to apear in the Council Chambers which will lead them to the promised land – sorry, to the beuteous parking lot. Does the old saw, “A fool and his money are easily parted,” apply here ?
For those in the Council who really need things spelled out (and for the voting Laguna Beach public) I here volunteer some reasonably self-evident facts, in hopefully simple English, to mull over:
- Laguna Beach survives from – and thrives because of – all the tourists coming here.
- The tourists come here by car.
- So as to enable them to spend money, the tourists need to step out of their cars.
- To do that, the cars need to be parked.
- The closer the tourists can park their cars to the beach, the restaurants, the “arts” venues, the tchotchke shops, the “beachy” raiment stores, the art-kitchy or not-too-bad art galleries, the happier they will be.
- Happy tourists will come back, time and again.
- Finding a place to park upon entering the town will make them very happy.
- Therefore, Laguna Beach needs a large parking facility or structure as close to town as is feasible. I mean large, more than a thousand spaces. Dig into the hillside, if necessary. Be decisive. It can be done.
Or, the City could spend the projected $6.5 million – as a start – and build that village entrance park and do it so that the bike and pedestrian paths don’t mix. Of course, why would any pedestrians in their right minds meander about there, amid the sere vegetation (remember? We’re short on water.), or why would any bicyclists dash about on those imagined park-like grounds next to constantly heavy traffic, is something the City solons have not asked of the consultants to explain. Oh – and where would those fine pedestrians and cyclists park their cars?
Mindaugas Gedgaudas, Laguna Beach