MAILBAG

Free parking is what makes city special

Burbank is an island in the middle of shark-infested waters.

That's why I love living here.

If the city starts charging for parking around downtown, then Burbank will be reduced to the status of “just another suburb of L.A.” (“Plan aims to ease parking,” Wednesday).

I go downtown because it is convenient, and it has that small-town feeling.

That would all change if the city started acting like Sherman Oaks or Studio City.

If you need more parking, then why not quit building housing downtown and take that monstrosity next to the AMC 16 and convert it into parking?

TOM LOPINSKI

Burbank

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Parking problems shouldn't surprise city

It just amazes me when the city of Burbank is surprised at the parking problems and the level of traffic congestion (“Plan aims to ease parking,” Wednesday).

Could it be because the City Council is approval-happy of almost any and all development projects? Yes, let's approve a condominium complex right in the middle of downtown Burbank. And let's shove as many movie theaters, restaurants and shops as we can in downtown Burbank, too.

Then we will scratch our heads wondering why parking is such a problem.

And let's tear up our main arteries like Hollywood Way and Olive Avenue for six to 12 months and then wonder why traffic is so backed up.

And let's make sure that we time the signals so drivers hit a red light every block or two. This is not rocket science. Let's put a moratorium on any developments over a certain size for five years, time our signals better and move our street repairs along at a more reasonable pace. These suggestions are all very practicable, but I am not going to hold my breath.

CYNDI OATWAY

Burbank

A theory on area's 'tubing structures'

Recently, fabricated steel tubing structures have begun popping up all along Burbank Boulevard — perhaps part of the recent beautification project. But hey, this is Burbank, you never know.

They are roughly 5 feet wide, 3 feet tall and embedded in cement a few feet back from the corners of several streets intersecting the boulevard.

Their random placement is confusing enough, but even more so is the question: What the heck are they?

Being at handicapped-access corners, I first wondered if the city was afraid that people in wheelchairs might suddenly peel out of control and smash themselves into nearby buildings. These would certainly do the job of protecting structures from crazed mobility-challenged citizens, but maybe I'm reaching a little too far on that one.

Slipping into my paranoid-schizophrenic commander-in-chief-mode, I conjured up a scenario whereby some of the intersections along Burbank Boulevard were vital to American oil interests and needed added fortification against possible terrorist attacks. But I ditched that idea, as well.

I pondered on, what on Earth could they be.

Then, out of the blue, using indisputable Euclidean logic, a ray of light appeared within my tunnel of darkness.

Goofy stuff like this always comes from, where else, the City Council.

And, what is the primary function of the City Council? To do the bidding of the residents of the Rancho District, it seems.

Aha, I might be on to something. Now, what is most near and dear to the hearts of all Rancho District denizens, aside from their vast collection of Federal Reserve notes? Drum roll please .?.?.?. their horses. Suddenly my palms became sweaty, and my pulse quickened. The new steel tubing structures are actually horse-hitching posts.

For decades, our poor Rancho residents' preferred mode of transportation has been totally ignored by our city. No hitching posts whatsoever in downtown Burbank, the Media City Center or the Empire Center to tie their horses to when they go shopping. Finally, the guiding light and dogged determination of our City Council has rectified this shameful part of Burbank's painful past.

Free at last, Rancho residents are free at last.

Or maybe not.

RICHARD J. TAFILAW

Burbank


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