By Brandon HENSLEY
One of tonight’s agenda items at the Crescenta Valley Town Council will include information presented by L.A. County Public Works on possible implementation of streetlights above Foothill Boulevard. The issue has divided some in the community.
James Chon of Public Works will be at the La Crescenta Library, 2809 Foothill Blvd., at 7 p.m. to inform the audience of the ongoing process. Between 10 and 15 lights would be installed on La Crescenta Avenue at the intersections of Fairmount and Los Olivos avenues.
Chon will also explain what a lighting district is and how that pertains to this area, and what the next steps will be regarding the process. According to californiataxdata.com, a street lighting district “is created by a local government agency to pay the costs associated with lighting on and around public streets, highways, parks and alleys.”
Town Council president Leslie Dickson said this week there has been some confusion by residents who have emailed her over whether the proposed lights were traffic lights. They are not, she said. These are simply lights to illuminate the street.
There was a meeting originally scheduled on the subject for June 28 at the county office; however, enough residents voiced their opinions to first have tonight’s CVTC meeting. The June county meeting was postponed.
Dickson said after tonight, the most likely next step would be a meeting or a vote held by the county in August.
Steve Pierce, community activist, is against the light installations. He said while some supporters may see this as a way to make La Crescenta Avenue safer, that is not the issue.
“What it does is start to destroy the continuity of our community. So many people here are here because it’s a rural area,” he said. “You go out at nighttime, you see the stars, you see the moon. You wake up in the morning and you don’t see lights shining in your face … it’s such a pleasant situation.”
Pierce said he understands why lights are put in at some streets, like the ones around Rosemont Middle School. Those make sense, he said. His reason for opposing the lights is to preserve the rural aspect of the foothills.
“This is not Santa Clarita. This is not a new community,” he said. “It’s a rural area. We have mountain lions in our backyards, bears in our backyards.”
“We have a large contingent of people up here who are against it,” he added.
Pierce called it a “sensitive issue” and hoped that enough people would show at the town council meeting. Dickson said council would support the community either way to possibly affect county’s decision.
“It’s about the community response,” she said. “We can write a letter to [Supervisor Mike Antonovich]. We can get involved, and we can assist if the community asks us to.”