Sunday, January 18, 2009

Planning Commission Meeting Regarding Marymount's Expansion

The Rancho Palos Verdes Planning Commission will continue to take oral comments concerning the Marymount College Expansion Project at is meeting scheduled for Tuesday January 27, 2009, beginning at 7:00 PM, inside the City Council Chambers at Hesse Park.

You are also encouraged to contribute written comments to the Planning Commission and you may do that via Email, using the Marymount College Expansion Project in the subject line and sending the Email to: That address is for Mr. Ara Mihranian, the city's manager for the project.

The Expansion Project's most controversial aspect is the proposition of placing 128-on campus dormitory rooms to house 250 students and 5 faculty advisers.

I will posting this notice on three of my blogs and providing some different comments on each blog, depending on the blog.

For anyone considering anything about Ponte Vista at San Pedro, you may want to learn some facts about the proposed expansion.

If the proposed plans are accepted, over 1,500 ADDED trips to and from the campus would be generated every weekday classes are held.

40% of the added traffic would travel along Western Avenue from Crestwood Street to P.V. Dive North.

Actually the Traffic and Circulation section of Marymount's Environmental Reports have significant errors that should be corrected before approval is granted for anything.

There is an Alternative that states if on-campus housing is not granted, the College's administration may want to increase the number of students and faculty living at the Palos Verdes North off-campus housing site on P.V. Drive North.

This would be almost a complete disaster, in my opinion, if this were to happen.

The Alternative also includes items that would basically place the entire Athletic Department and their classes at Palos Verdes North, along with a large increase in housing units.

The off-campus housing site already has about 300 individuals living there on a site that has a code variance because there are actually more dwelling units at the site than is currently allowed by L.A. zoning laws.

I doubt very much that the College's administration is looking to try and deal with the city of Los Angeles with regards to expanding the off-campus housing site, but you need to know that it is on the table.

No matter what you would like to see at the Ponte Vista site, I hope you join many of us in objecting to any on-campus housing being built at Marymount College and that there must be no real consideration of the Alternative which would add more units along Palos Verdes Drive North.


Louis Dominguez said...

Do not understnad your statement re "it would be the only private college west of the Mississippi River to have on-campus housing." How about USC, Loyola Marymount, Gonzaga, etc. Before the 4 year Marymount moved to Loyola it had on campus housing. Of coure, maybe you meant to say only 2 year colleges, but even this is not true. A qucik search found seveeral. Oregon Coast is just one.

M Richards said...

Thank you Mr. Dominguez for letting me know about the error concerning Marymount being a two-year college.

I am still having some difficulty looking for any on-campus student housing that you mentioned concerning "Oregon Coast".

Oregon Coast Community is a public two-year college and I have not been able to find any mention of on-campus housing on any Web site.

I would appreciate it if you could inform me where you found information that would support on-campus housing at any two-year college, that you may know about.

I shall endeavor to look more closely at whether the World Wide Web contains any information that would refute the claim that Marymount College might become the only two-year private college, west of the Mississippi River to have on-campus housing for students.

M Richards said...

I found one!

Mr. Dominguez provided me with the real reason I needed to do more fact checking and so I did.

Deep Springs College is a private, two-year college, west of the Mississippi River that has on-campus housing. is its Web site.

Here is a bit of descriptive I found on the college's Web site.

"Deep Springs is an all-male liberal arts college located on a cattle-ranch and alfalfa farm in California's High Desert.

Electrical pioneer L.L. Nunn founded the school in 1917 on the three pillars of academics, labor, and self-governance in order to help young men prepare themselves for lives of service to humanity. The school's 26 students, along with its staff and faculty, form a close community engaged in this intense project.

Deep Springs operates on the belief that manual labor and political deliberation are integral parts of a comprehensive liberal arts education.

Each student attends for two years and receives a full scholarship valued at over $50,000 per year. Afterwards, most complete their degrees at the world's most prestigious four year institutions."

All the students and some faculy and others reside in The Boardinghouse, on the campus/ranch.

I have edited the three blogs containing the most current post regarding the Marymount Expansion Project to reflect my newfound knowledge.

Furthermore, according to the American Association of Community Colleges, there are approximately 233 public two-year institutions and "70 independent" two-year colleges that provide some sort of housing.

IN FACT, one of the closest two-year private colleges to Marymount did have housing for students before it closed down in 2008.

According to various Web sites, the Brooks College, primarily located in Long Beach, Ca HAS housing before it was closed and the land sold to the campus of C.S.U.L.B.

Anonymous said...

will the commission vote on the project?

M Richards said...

Thanks for the question, Anonymous.

Eventually, the Rancho Palos Verdes Planning Commission will vote on the Marymount issue.

I don't know when that vote would be taken. It was recently learned that Tuesday's meeting will be dealing primarily with parking issues in the project plans.

It look like the February 24 Planning Commission meeting will deal more with the traffic portion of the plans.

It may be March or April before the Planning Commission votes, before sending it forward to the City Council.

However, there may be enough items found to be defecient in the EIR to allow for the Planning Commission sending the Project's plans back to City Staff and the Applicant for further studies.

The current thought by some in the community is that the latest Staff Report looks bad for proponents of having on-campus housing at Marymount.