Friday, November 09, 2012

This Is Where I Begin Again

 The new Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for "The Ponte Vista Project" has been published and the (currently) 60-day review and public comment period has begun.

Everyone interested in any part of the project and/or its impacts on communities is encouraged to learn what they wish to learn about the project and submit comments for review.

Case Number: ENV-2005-4516-EIR

The comment period for review is from November 8, 2012 and (currently) ending on January 7, 2013

Please direct your written comments to:

Erin Strelich, Planning Assistant
Los Angeles Department of City Planning
200 N. Spring Street, Room 750
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Telephone Number: (213) 978-1343


Copies of the documents can be found at local libraries and there will be public hearings noticed and held, during the review period.

The DEIR is also available online at: On the left side of the homepage, scroll down to "Environmental" and under that icon, look for and click on "Draft EIR". Look for "Ponte Vista Project" click on that and you will go to access portals for the DEIR documents.

The applicant for the project is SFI Bridgeview, LLC. 'Bridgeview' is the English translation of Ponte Vista (Italian).

The NEW project consists of FOUR 'Alternatives'. I will provide an illustration for each and some facts and comments under each illustration.

Alternative A 

Alternative A is the 'No Project' alternative that is required for all projects.

Simply put, this alternative states that nothing will happen to the property, no development will occur and the site will remain as it looks today and it will continue to deteriorate into the future. 

Alternative B

Alternative B, as described in the DEIR is also a 'No Project' alternative, with a couple of twists.

If Alternative B is approved, the current applicant or another party would strip the site of all buildings and other structures and leave the property with its current 'R1-1XL' and open space zoning.

This Alternative allows for the applicant or another party to build up to 429 single-family, detached housing dwelling on lots of not less than 5,000 square feet in area.

When you hear "R 1", this is what the lots would be illustrated like. You will hear lots of comments about this alternative, both positive and negative. It would be a very, very long shot to have this alternative adopted, but it could happen.

Alternative C
Click on image to enlarge it. 

This is the alternative proposed by the Staff of L.A. City Planning.

It allow for '830' dwelling units and appears to be gaining favor by some in the general public.

It offers less dwelling density than found in The Gardens and because there is no direct vehicle traffic to Gaffey Street for folks who will live and work at Ponte Vista, this might just be what is approved of, down the road.

Alternative D 
Click on image to enlarge it

This is the alternative that the project's developers want to see approved.

It is the 1,135-unit project. It does have some type and size differences than we have seen in previous illustrations and documents from the new development team.

Since the dwelling unit density is greater than found at The Gardens, along with Western Avenue being the only access in and out of Ponte Vista, as well as some other reasons that I will comment on down the road, I do not support this alternative and suggest and hope you also find 1,135-units to be too many for Ponte Vista.

Major problems still loom for the developers and the community and finding and implementing solutions to those problems must come first, before any approvals are provided.

However, I feel there are two alternatives that should be more carefully studied and compared to each other so we can find the best outcome for our communities and for the new neighbors we will welcome at Ponte Vista.

I think we need to drop Alternatives A and D from much of the discussion and focus on comparing and approving either Alternative B or Alternative C.

We need to understand what folks said all the way back in 2005; Something needs to be built on the site. Whether is it vacant land, 429 upscale single-family houses or up to 830-units of multiple types, I feel it is about time we all band together and get something completed on the 61.53 acre site.

For those continuing to demand R1, I can certainly live with that. I do not believe our communities have mandates to provide housing to too many people in an area where traffic is such a concern and where the location is near refineries and storage tanks. 

In future posts, I will work on dealing with public access through the site rather than having a gated community at Ponte Vista. I think there is compromise on all sides that should allow for access to Mary Star High School and for visitors to the area.

Traffic. There, I wrote it again in this new era for Ponte Vista.

For more reasons than found in the DEIR, there has been not enough consideration with Ponte Vista and other developments in the nearby area, all having great impact on traffic and congestion.

There has not been and still nothing reasonable exists that deals with both the impact on traffic by Ponte Vista's development and the greatly expanded residential wishes by Marymount College via their Palos Verdes North off-campus housing and future teaching site.

While enrollment at Rolling Hills Prep seems to not be increasing as much as previously considered, we could find many more students on that site, as well.

I noted in a comment to my last post that yesterday also brought to my mailbox the Final EIS/EIR and Master Facilities Plan for The Clearwater Program of The Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County.

It is true that this project will progress well into the future and be underground for almost all the way from Carson to the Pacific Ocean, there will be some overland impacts and if something terrible happens during tunnel construction, I hope there is mitigation for that.

So it begins...again. It's back on...finally.

Your comments and inputs are welcome and you may constructs posts to the comments section and also write a post yourself, on this blog.

It's time to stop reading everything else and head into the DEIR. Happy reading, if that is possible.

Thank you.

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