Letter: Where the Community Council Stands on Pedestrian Bridge

 

(Editor’s note: This letter was sent to CTN on March 18 from the Pacific Palisades Community Council President, Maryam Zar.)

Maryam Zar

Much has been made of the role of PPCC (Pacific Palisades Community Council) in the deliberations around the bridge project.

In 2004, the PPCC board passed a motion to support certain aspects of the Potrero Canyon park project and certain aspects of, what was termed “Phase III” of the project which included (items g and h respectively) the construction of a walk bridge from the mouth of Potrero Canyon over PCH to beach parking and an EIR (Environmental Impact Review) of the project upon abutting neighborhoods, only after further input from the community is sought by the City regarding the design and plan. (PPCC Minutes, May 27, 2004).

More recently, PPCC voted to allow the project to move the outreach phase, in order for the City to conduct meaningful outreach aimed at soliciting the community’s feedback. In recent meetings, Jose Berestain, BOE’s lead engineer on the project has said they are in the “infancy stage” of the bridge project and are looking for community feedback.

Many Palisadians are proponents of the bridge and have been involved with the project for years. Still others continue to inform me that they are only just beginning to learn about the bridge that would connect our community to the coastline and are alarmed at its modern-day implications, given the challenges we already have in our parks and bluffs.

Others express an inability to be heard or to have their concerns voiced. My response to those people is that PPCC has created multiple opportunities for all to be heard on this matter.

Now the City has taken over the very serious and professionally managed work of outreach, and there are still more opportunities to be heard in this “1st phase” of the outreach process which seeks community input.

We have been told over and over that the Council Office is driving this process and that they are listening to the feedback they hear. If people feel that they have more to say, they should not mince words or lament the lack of opportunity but impart their feedback.

As this project progresses, it is important to all stakeholders that people feel sufficiently informed, fairly heard, and properly vested in the ultimate outcome.

This bridge is something our community will live with for generations. Please make sure to engage with the outreach process that has begun to unfold. It is an earnest effort, and it depends on us all in order to be effective.

For my part, I have shared my thoughts and I have been assured that my long-term concerns rooted in community exposure and the impact of that exposure on our collective public safety have been received.

Best, Maryam

 

Maryam Zar

President

Pacific Palisades Community Council

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