July 21 Neighborhood Meeting Summary


E-mail reminders


6 members


Susan brought a box of assorted fancy cookies.


Agenda Items:

The meeting began about 11:25 am

  • Lamanda Park Specific Plan (includes Avon site), workshop July 26
    • The Lamanda Park Specific Plan will be a new plan that includes areas removed from the existing East Pasadena and East Colorado Specific Plans.
    • The plan area runs along Colorado Blvd and north to the freeway, or just short of it, from Roosevelt Ave on the west to Eaton Wash on the east. It includes the Avon site that has been purchased by Home Depot. You can see the area mapped here:
    • The new General Plan describes the Lamanda Park Specific Plan area as “uniquely suited for the incubation of new start-up businesses, including creative technology, medical, research and development, and light industrial activities”.
    • Specific Plans provide more detailed zoning regulations then the General Plan’s land use map designations. For example, a Specific Plan can impose stricter limits on height, greater setbacks, restrictions on types of uses then the General Plan’s generic designations.
    • If you have thoughts about what development you would, or would not, want to see happen within the Lamanda Park Specific Plan area, you should attend this workshop.
    • Thursday July 26, 2018
      6 – 8 pm
      Pasadena City Church
      2588 E. Colorado Blvd
  • Space Bank project approved by City Council
    • Development of the Space Bank site was heard by the City Council at its meetings on July 9 and July 16 after almost 6 hours of presentation, hearing from the public, asking questions, and deliberation.
    • The Council approved the Planned Development with a 5 – 3 vote.
    • Councilmember Masuda voted against it. Councilmember Kennedy voted for it on the 16th after having voted against it on the 9th. Councilmember Hampton voted no. Councilmember Gordo, who was absent on the 9th, voted no after attempting to delay a decision by requiring more neighborhood outreach about traffic mitigation. No one else thought that would make any difference. The Mayor and Councilmembers Madison, McAustin, and Wilson were firm yes votes.
    • The approved plan is basically as described here previously.
    • The developer made some local hire, apprenticeship, and school engagement agreements which resulted in the union opposition expressed earlier in the process switching to support.
    • The project will have additional hearings by the Design Commission to refine design details.
  • Pickleball courts proposed south of dog park
    • Pickleball is a game with similarities to tennis, badminton, and ping pong. It is a fast growing sport, particularly popular with those middle aged and older as well as young children. Four pickleball courts fit in the space of one tennis court.
    • On June 27, a Community Meeting was held in the gymnasium at Victory Park.
      • The meeting was led by Loren Pluth, Senior Project Manager for Parks and Natural Resources in the Public Works Dept.
      • Also present from the City was Kenny James from Human Services and Recreation.
      • Councilmember Gene Masuda and his field representative Noreen Sullivan were there to observe.
      • Some neighbors were present, but they were outnumbered by “pickleball partners”. There might have been about 30 attendees total.
      • Mr Pluth said 1900 pieces of direct mail announcing the meeting were sent to residences within a service radius of 1/2 mile of the park.
      • A handout had a very rough “design concept” of twelve courts overlaid on a satellite image.
      • The court facilities would be located on City land south of the dog park.
      • Courts would be oriented north-south, which for some reason related to sun position is considered “proper”.
      • Hours of greatest desired use are evenings and weekends, so lighting is needed.
      • Because the courts are smaller then tennis courts, lights would probably not have to even be as high as they are for tennis.
      • A drinking fountain is needed in proximity.
      • Vehicle access will only be from Orange Grove and nothing else is under consideration.
      • How many parking spaces are needed has to be determined. Already too few for the dog park, so might want to include additional capacity for it.
      • Already know Edison would not allow the courts under their wires, but they are probably amenable to the City leasing additional space for parking. The existing parking lot is on Edison land leased by the City.
      • The distance to the existing restroom is greater then the recommended maximum, so adding a restroom closer to the courts would be a future project.
      • Process. If the Parks and Recreation Commission and Staff still think the project is a good idea, then the City Council has to take action to allocate some budget to develop a more precise design and get a Conditional Use Permit, including CEQA (environmental) review. It might be necessary to expand the Edison lease, and anything to do with Edison takes extra time.
      • After his brief presentation, the meeting went to question and answer.
      • Development funding would come from Residential Impact Fees that have and are being paid for each bedroom added in East Pasadena. (For example, the Space Bank project is expected to pay over $7 million in residential impact fees. Which implies the apartment building at Sierra Madre Villa and Foothill probably paid around $3.5 million).
      • Questions about homeless were deflected as being an issue on the operational side, so can’t respond.
      • Lighting, traffic, and noise impacts would be part of the environmental review.
      • There are currently 14 City tennis courts and 24 in the school district.
      • The proposed location is about 150 feet from the property lines of the houses on Eaton Drive and about 300 feet from those on Avocado Ave.
      • What about the lights of cars coming to and from the parking bothering the neighbors?
      • Was asked about possibly putting landscaping between the courts and Avocado Ave. Could consider it.
      • Would the court lights be on even if one is using them?  Might be able to have user activated lights.
      • Would the lights go off automatically when the park closes?  Yes
      • What about the noise of the ball?  Said the noise levels at existing facilities will be measured as part of the environmental review.
      • How late would it be open?  Municipal code’s standard hours for a lighted park are to 10 pm. The City Council can specify something else for a specific park.
      • The Municipal Code currently bans lighting of Viña Vieja Park. So that would have to be changed.
      • Would there be tournaments?  That would have to be evaluated as part of the environmental review.
      • Environmental review will  do a “complete photo-metric study”. Not allowed to directly affect adjacent properties.
      • How much traffic would be generated?  Players come and go at different times, so impact not expected to be a lot, but traffic study will be required as part of the environmental review.
      • Where will funding to operate the facility come from?  City’s general fund. Concern expressed that City better be sure it has funds for maintenance before it builds new facilities.
      • Could people using the courts who are not from Pasadena be charged a fee?  Not for open use courts, as these are proposed to be.
    • The Parks and Recreation Commission met on July 10 with an update on the Pickleball Courts on the agenda.
      • Loren Pluth summarized the Community Meeting, including showing them the same rough “design concept”.
      • He said that subsequent to the meeting he had received five e-mails in support and one with concerns.
      • He told them he felt there was enough support to continue to develop a more refined concept to submit.
      • He told them Councilmember Masuda was at the community meeting and was supportive. (Believe he was optimistically interpreting what Masuda actually said at the meeting).
      • Asked why it needs a Conditional Use Permit (CUP), he said because it is a new facility. The environmental review is embedded in the CUP process.
      • Only attendees at meeting were the official pickleball representative, and one neighbor.
    • Some considerations going forward –
      • If the courts are active after dark, then the parking lot and entryway will also have to be lit.
      • Once the ban on lighting is removed, the dog park people will want it to be lit also.
      • The restroom and pedestrian entrance will have to be open until the court facility closes.
      • So, the light, noise, and activity will be throughout the park until 10 pm.
      • Will there be “security lighting” all through the night?  That wasn’t asked.
      • If more parking is available, then will the dog park users take it and leave the pickleball people without?
      • Can the dog park handle more usage that would come with extra parking and likely extended hours?
      • Is this likely to lead to more people parking on Avocado and Las Lunas and entering via the pedestrian entrance?  Keeping the entrance obscure from the park side should maybe be a goal.
      • Shouldn’t there be concerns about air quality for the players, considering the distance to the freeway and the usual evening breeze will bring the pollution in the direction of the courts?
      • Councilmember Madison has been pushing to revive the dual rink ice rink project. Using the land for something else will make reviving that here a lot harder.
      • Pickleball seems to have much less negative impact to the neighbors then the previous ice rink or soccer field proposals.
  • Power Integrated Resource Plan meeting August 23
    • “The Power Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) is Pasadena’s long-range blueprint for supplying reliable and environmentally responsible electricity at competitive rates. The IRP is based on an industry-standard, 20-year planning horizon.”
    • The plan is a state mandate, due by January 1, 2019.
    • Previous versions were completed in 2009, 2012, and 2015, but they were not state mandated.
    • A community meeting (right next to us!) to discuss the plan and hear community member priorities:
      • Thursday August 23, 2018
        6 pm
        Hastings Branch Library
        3325 E Orange Grove Blvd
    • Right next to us!  Please try to attend to better understand where our power comes from, planning for the future, and let them hear priorities from more then the usual activists.
    • In addition to the meeting, there are two online opportunities to participate in the process:
    • The same web page for feedback/questions also includes the presentation materials used for previous meetings on the subject.
  • Green Street Ficus Trees future, survey + meeting
    • The City wants to know if ficus trees should continue to be planted as street trees on Green Street.
    • They say they won’t remove existing healthy trees; this is just about whether they should plant new ones in emptied spots.
    • Although ficus trees grow big and make a great shade canopy, their roots can be problematic, and the current city code requires buildings on Green Street to be placed right up against the sidewalk, leaving very little room for any kind of shady street trees.
    • Here is the web page with a brief explanation and a survey to express your opinion:
      (Note the survey asks for contact info, but if you don’t want to give it, just enter a space to be allowed to go to the next question)
    • Feel strongly? Also attend the meeting:
      July 25, 2018
      6 pm
      Central Library’s Donald R. Wright Auditorium
      (intersection of Garfield Ave with Walnut St, parking in back)
  • Local Crime Summary
    • For the last month in our neighborhood, from crimemapping.com: (note that time is typically when reported, not when it happened)
      • Friday June 29, 9:14 am, 3200 block E Foothill Bl, Armed Robbery
      • Saturday June 30, 2:21 am, 3100 block E Foothill Bl, Domestic Violence Assault
      • Sunday July 1, 1:59 pm, 3100 block Mataro St, Residential Burglary
      • Monday July 2, 8:15 am, 3100 block Mataro St, Burglary
    • Not listed on crimemapping, which presumably means they were not reported to police, have heard of a number of car burglaries.
      • Two  separate incidents at the same residence on Las Lunas St near Sierra Madre Villa. One time the car was on the street, once in the driveway. Went through every compartment looking for change and anything else with value.
      • Another on July 19 on Avocado Ave between Las Lunas and Hermanos. Homeowner had forgotten to lock their car parked in driveway. Prescription glasses that happened to be in a brand name sunglasses case were stolen.
      • Another in the same mid-July time frame near the western end of Las Lunas St.
    • It is important to report incidents of break-in or theft, even if what is taken is minor. What is reported, or not, affects allocation of police resources. It is true the police likely won’t send anyone to take a report for a minor crime where the culprit is no longer present. But you can file such reports online here:
  • anything else attendees wish to discuss
    • Missing fence between park and Edison
      • The plastic fence has been completely removed where it went under the eastern rank of high tension wires. It remains in place parallel to the wires on either side.
      • When contacted in late June, the Parks and Landscaping Superintendent said repairs would happen the week of July 9. Did not answer question as to why that big section is missing.
      • Now the broken slats have been replaced in the fencing that was still in place. But the big missing section is still missing.
      • Have to re-contact to try to find out what is going on.

Next meeting is August 18, 2018 at 11:15 am, in Hastings Branch Library meeting room

Adjourned about 12:30 pm