MAILBAG

Forums provide closer inspection

Regarding “City Council race starts to take shape,” Tuesday: A very good method for City Council candidates to get their platforms and views out to voters is to attend candidate forums where residents can ask questions on city issues of concern.

These forums provide opportunities to meet and greet voters, sometimes on a one-on-one basis, whereby the candidates can present themselves as individuals interested in serving the public through better government.

One such forum is hosted by the Royal Canyon Property Owners Assn. at its annual business meeting Feb. 21 at the Oakmont Country Club.

This meeting is for members of the association, which represents 678 homes in the Royal Canyon neighborhood. Our association has hosted such forums for many years to help inform our members about the issues of the day and to allow them to make the important decisions about which candidates to support in the City Council election.

An important function of associations such as ours is to help bridge communications between residents and city government.

This year we will have Will Rogers, who had a column in the Glendale News-Press for many years, as the moderator for our City Council candidates forum.

Additional details on our forum can be seen at www.rcpoa.net.

JOHN WOLFF

Glendale

EDITOR’S NOTE: Wolff is the president of the Royal Canyon Property Owners Assn.

One willing tenant for an arts district

Dorothy Dash wrote a very insightful letter to the Glendale News-Press asking, if we build an arts district, who will come? (“Arts district comes with a price tag,” Mailbag, Wednesday). Good intentions about the arts aside, if our community doesn’t support what we have now, why do we believe a different perspective on an arts district is needed or wanted?

The cultural and economic shifts in Glendale’s population are changing, as with any vibrant city. Some arts organizations and businesses that were vibrant 10 years ago are now feeling the pinch of a recession and an arts audience split over so many choices.

Dash and I were both friends of a very dear man, George Crittenden, who passed away in June. Crittenden lived his entire 80 years in Glendale and made his living in the arts as both a film projectionist and a booking agent for films. For the past 25 years, I have made my living in the arts running a prop house that services the entertainment industry.

I learned a lot from Crittenden about the film business. I am better at my craft because of the time he took to inspire, challenge and train me over the 15 years we knew each other.

Just as one generation of filmmakers trains the next generation, one generation of arts districts evolves into the next generation. I spoke to City Council candidate Laura Friedman this week about the San Fernando Road Corridor, and she got me excited about the possibilities for my business and others that service the entertainment industry to relocate to Glendale. The tail doesn’t wag the dog. I would happily move my business to the San Fernando Road Corridor if other prop houses would also relocate.

PAM ELYEA

Glendale

Let Foothill be a one-story town

I agree with the Highway Highlands neighbors in opposing the proposed three-story project at 3522-3534 Foothill Blvd. in north Glendale (“Foothill Lumber building is still not OK,” Community Commentary, Jan. 1).

In addition to the view issues, a building of that magnitude and its tenants can only cause more traffic — not only on Foothill Boulevard, but on the neighboring streets as well, creating the usual problems and accidents associated with traffic and requiring more policing. This area cannot bear additional traffic. We are talking about a small-town main street, not Brand Boulevard or a freeway.

A three-story building is too big for the area — it would stick out like a sore thumb.

It also would set a precedent for more large buildings, bringing more people and more traffic — if the economy picks up. If it doesn’t, then we have empty buildings just asking for transients, graffiti, lack of maintenance, etc., reducing our area to a slum and resulting in even lower property values for all of us.

With the economy the way it is (and will probably be for quite a while), what businesses are going to fill such a large building? Whether it be mixed use (professional, retail, medical) makes no difference whatsoever. Opening a retail store in the next couple of years is almost certain financial suicide. As far as medical offices, we already have newly expanded facilities next to Verdugo Hills Hospital, just a few minutes away.

Aesthetically, a three-story building destroys the view for neighboring homeowners and is out of place for the area regardless of design. Practically, a three-story building, if filled, would create havoc traffic-wise; if it’s not filled, then we have a boondoggle on our hands with its associated problems.

The core issue is that we do not need or want any more development in our area, period. It is a small town, and we want it to stay that way.

There are already many vacancies along the Foothill corridor, including some in relatively new or new buildings. Let’s fix what we already have.

SHERRY STUBBS

La Crescenta


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