Monday, August 18, 2008

Rancho Palos Verdes and (or Versus) Ponte Vista

A member of the Los Angeles City Department of Planning who has been very involved with the Ponte Vista project sent in a reply to an Email generated by a Rancho Palos Verdes resident.

The Rancho Palos Verdes resident (who I know) wondered whether the city's government had any real say in aspects of the Ponte Vista at San Pedro project and whether the R.P.V. City Council has any relevant jurisdiction regarding any decisions, mitigation, or the potential size of the project.

Here is a copy of the body of one Email sent by the Rancho Palos Verdes resident:

"RPV city council seems to think the Ponte Vista traffic mitigation measures on Western Avenue do not require RPV's cooperation regardless of the fact most of Western Avenue between PV Drive North and Summerland lie within RPV city boundaries. I believe I read in the LADOT informational material that RPV's cooperation is required.

I would really appreciate clear facts in this regard. Are traffic mitigation measures outside RPV jurisdiction entirely? Or does their position and that of their residents have zero value.

Thank you for your time."

Here is the body of the reply sent to the resident from the member of the Planning Department:

"I apologize for the delayed response but I needed to speak with someone from our Transportation Department regarding this issue. To put this in the simplest terms, any mitigation measures that occur within RPV boundaries need to be approved by RPV.

Hope this helps."

These Emails are important because it shows that the city of R.P.V. has more leverage than many folks might think.

I also means that residents of Rancho Palos Verdes have greater rights and abilities to influence the project than they may think.

It means that R.P.V. residents can challenge their City Council for more 'redress of grievance' and it means that the Rancho Palos Verdes City Council needs to work with its residents more in learning and acting on behalf of the residents.

I must state for fact that, so far, all five members of the Rancho Palos Verdes City Council have positioned themselves to be against such a huge development on a shared border that could come from the Ponte Vista at San Pedro.

It also must be stated that these five gentleman have instructed individuals to create documentation that provides some of the best arguments and comments against Bob Bisno's plans to bring 2,300 or even 1,950-units to northwest San Pedro.

We must not condemn most of the actions of the R.P.V. City Council at this point, but there is much more that they can do and it appears they have more power than many people have considered they have.

As a member of the Rancho Palos Verdes Traffic Safety Commission, I proposed in its upcoming work plans a public forum where the public can provide testimony to the Commission, concerning Ponte Vista at San Pedro.

I did this for two true reasons; I feel strongly that more R.P.V. residents need to state to their city leaders their opinions concerning Ponte Vista and I want residents, primarily living in the 'Eastview' section of eastern R.P.V. greater chances to become more involved with their city government.

The public forum which I suggested would not have the Traffic Safety Commission do anything other than provide members of the city's government and staff the chance to hear from more of the public. I did not imagine that the Traffic Safety Commission would do anything other than be a venue for public comment and a resource the City Council could use in learning more about the affects of what Ponte Vista might to those residents living closest to the project, especially in Rancho Palos Verdes.

The Traffic Safety Commission, in my opinion, does not need to make any recommendations on its own, but it can be a channel for information, from the governors to the public and the public to the governors.

I have always stated my appreciation for the work our city's leaders have done, concerning Ponte Vista.

The comments written by Mr. Kit Fox, a member of the Planning Department of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes are about the best set of comments written to the Draft Environmental Impact Report, and I have repeated that information by voice and in print numerous times.

But it now has been explained that the city of Rancho Palos Verdes can have a larger role in determining what could be built at Ponte Vista.

There is a stretch of Western Avenue that has commercial, retail, and residential structures, on both sides of the avenue and are also within the boundaries of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes.

Both that stretch and the much longer stretch of Western Avenue that has Rancho Palos Verdes on the west side and the city of Los Angeles on the east side, are with the area that Bob must mitigate traffic issues with, if he continues to seek approval of his application to build 1,950 units.

Since it is the opinion of the Los Angeles City Department of Transportation that mitigation falling within Rancho Palos Verdes must be approved of by that city, then it should stand to reason that the city of Rancho Palos Verdes can even demand greater mitigation within its boundaries, approve the current mitigation, or disapprove mitigation already suggested.

It is because Rancho Palos Verdes has more power than many people think, it is essential that the city of Rancho Palos Verdes to its utmost to include its residents in helping to decide what mitigation measures should be adopted, improved upon, or denied, I feel.

The members of the City Council will decide, but it is up to the residents who are their constituents to assist them in making their decision.

The City Council needs to work for us and we need to work for the City Council and the government and staff of Rancho Palos Verdes to ensure the best future for OUR city.

No comments: