* Re “Another Argument for Creativity,” Ventura County editorials, June 27.
The Times’ support for the Ahmanson mini-city misses the mark. The issue is not whether the city is designed great or not but where the designed city is being proposed. It is on land that Ventura County had zoned for open space. It is a critical airshed separating the San Fernando and Conejo valleys in an area with the sixth-worst air pollution in the nation. It would remove more than 1,000 oak trees. The project would generate tens of thousands of car trips onto the Ventura Freeway, causing rush-hour backups into Thousand Oaks.
Instead of justifying a project that would clearly lower the quality of life for existing residents, The Times should join with the surrounding communities in asking that the land be purchased with federal Land and Conservation Act funds and made into a regional park.
* I am bewildered by your editorial regarding the Ahmanson Ranch. How can you support this development, which would destroy the ecosystem?
In the future, I suggest that you practice more responsible journalism. Please reconsider your stand and the community on which you are treading.
* The Times is talking out of both sides of its mouth. First the opinion page article, “Looking to Sinclair for a Happy End to a Tale of Two L.A.s,” by Peter Drier and Robert Gottlieb (June 27) advocating a livable Los Angeles: “The region still has the nation’s dirtiest air basin. We have, per capita, fewer green spaces than any comparable city in the country.” The writers say the solution is about attacking urban sprawl problems.
The solution is not the destruction of 5,000-acre Ahmanson Ranch. The proposed new city on Ahmanson Ranch is urban sprawl at its worst, not “creative planning.” There is no jobs-housing balance in this development (see its environmental impact report). The development of Ahmanson RAnch would result in more than 200 new tons of smog a year from the additional 46,000 car trips a day added to the already gridlocked area streets and the Ventura Freeway.
Developer Washington Mutual needs to put its bulldozers to work on a blighted area in the San Fernando Valley and build really affordable housing.
Wake up, Washington Mutual, and listen to those who oppose your destroying the unique Ahmanson Ranch with its irreplaceable resources, including the officially extinct spineflower, endangered red-legged frogs, 8,000 oaks, headwaters of Malibu Creek and rare native grassland. Sell the ranch as parkland to state or federal agencies and help bring a happy end to a Tale of Two L.A.s.”
MARY E. WIESBROCK