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Mailbag: Mariners' Mile proposal remains foggy

The Jan. 26 Mariners' Mile public workshop at Marina Park was intended to provide residents with a clear vision of what the city and the consultant, Placeworks, have been working on since their last community meeting.

It was clear that the city and the consultant have their vision, and this vision was not shared with the community. The same visual presentation was shown, with the same conceptual sketches. Only this time the discussion shifted to phrases as, "building mass," "harbor frontage," "commercial corridors" and "master opportunities."

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The "master opportunities" were specifically directed at the property owners along Pacific Coast Highway, and this term was further defined as "discretionary actions," "dedications" and "land offers."

This would allow the city to work with Caltrans to increase the lanes on PCH to six. This would encroach on and impact many private properties along Mariners' Mile.

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The proposed Avon Village, which would be located between the streets of Riverside and Tustin, are some of the most narrow and compacted streets in Newport Beach. The mobility of this particular area is impractical and ill-considered, as these streets are within feet of the residential community of Newport Heights.

This area is also home to three schools, Newport Heights Elementary, Horace Ensign Middle and Newport Harbor High. This critical area should not be used as focal point for development.

Furthermore, increasing PCH to six lanes, and to include Avon Street's two lanes, could potentially make this small area of town an eight-lane artery. This would not be a harmonious merger for the families, or the school children, and for the general quality of life in this residential community.

In addition, the Master Plan was never presented with the updated conceptual drawings, yet this project will be "revealed" to the city in the near future. It seems that transparency is antiquated in the city of Newport Beach and that listening to the taxpayers' concerns is not necessary anymore, but listening to the guy in town with the most money is the name of the game.

Newport Beach citizens' vision is clear, and that after six months of Mariners' Mile workshops, it is apparent that the city's vision remains foggy.

Peggy Palmer

Newport Beach

Congressman is too pro-Russia

In recent weeks, our federal government revealed clear and credible evidence that there was interference in our presidential election by a hostile, foreign nation, Russia. I was dismayed to find out that my congressman, Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa), has been a longtime cheerleader for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In December, Rohrabacher said it was "terrific" that the Democratic campaign was hacked, according to CNN. Alarmed by this cavalier, and deeply unpatriotic stance, I looked into my congressman's background. What I found was appalling. He has supported Putin and Russian invasion into neighboring countries, according to Salon, for years. He admires Putin, according to the Washington Post, and announced that Putin was right, and the U.S. was wrong, about the Russian invasion into Georgia in 2008, according to the Telegraph.

Gregory Coben

Laguna Beach

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