Local Development Odds and Ends

If you’re like me, any local construction project gets your curiosity up. Here’s some answers to your “What the heck’s being built there?” questions.

Just recently the Crescenta Valley Town Council has taken a giant leap forward by reinventing their Land Use Committee to oversee controversial development. Their first meeting was last month, and the issue discussed was a development on the southwest corner of Briggs and Prospect to build three single family homes. The sticking point was that the County wanted the developer to build a sidewalk in front of his property (in a neighborhood without sidewalks) which would also remove some big trees. The developer (I think reasonably) wanted the Town Council to support dropping that sidewalk requirement. Councilmembers canvassed the neighborhood to get a consensus, most neighbors supported the developer, and Council voted to write a letter urging “no sidewalks”. Nicely done Town Council!

The Town Council’s Land Use Committee will now have regular monthly meetings (hallelujah!) on the second Thursday of each month. If you read this in time, there’s one tonight, March 10 at 6:30 p.m. at the La Crescenta Library. Tonight’s issue will be a project on Ramsdell just above Foothill, which will require permits for the removal of two oaks, one retroactively. The project’s neighbors will be notified of the project and the meeting. I’d urge you all to attend, at the very least to see how this process works.

I saw Councilmember Charlie Beatty at Ralph’s the other night, and he reminded me that his efforts to get a lighted crosswalk across Foothill at Glenwood are still moving forward. This would be similar to the one at Cloud and would help CV High students get to school. The council’s been great at solving traffic issues, and Councilmembers Steve Goldsworthy, Robbyn Battles and Cheryl Davis have made real improvements to make our streets safer.

Are you curious about the odd little cinderblock building at Dyer and Foothill next to the Library that has been in “on-again – off-again” construction for a couple years? The County’s paperwork says it’ll be a little restaurant. That’s a nice location if they can pull it off.

Then there’s the Armenian storefront church on Foothill just east of the Library that opened three years ago without permits, and more importantly, without parking. They’ve been dodging County code enforcement ever since, and have finally submitted their plans for a parking lot to be dug out of the empty lot next door.

Down the street, the “Plumb Crazy” project on Foothill west of Rosemont seems to have come to a complete halt. No clue what’s happening there. That massive office building was first designed to be three stories tall, but the plans were discovered to contain huge errors in the favor of the developer, who had to redraw it to two stories.

The Moreton Bay Fig Tree next door, although reduced in size during an aborted attempt to cut it down, seems finally safe and an agreement with the property owner has been achieved. A little work party is being planned for some projects to improve the health of the tree. It promises to be a healing event with the former protesters supplying the labor and the owner supplying snacks and water.

Down near Montrose you may have noticed the big earth moving machines working the top of the Indian Springs Plaza on Verdugo Road just below the hospital. The owners of the shopping center are adding a small restaurant/retail building there, with its own parking underneath. Oddly that lot is in La Cañada, while the rest of the shopping center is in Glendale.

And last, but by far the coolest, is the Trader Joe’s construction in Montrose, still dinking along slowly and still projected for opening this fall. The two stop signs added on Honolulu were part of the traffic mitigation deal made for that project.

As the economy ramps up again we’ll see more and more development. I urge you to take an active interest. It’s your community and its future is in your hands!