By Alex Cordero
Rain did not keep local residents, the Planning & Community Development staff and council members in the City of Pasadena from the Lincoln Avenue community walking tour that was scheduled on Feb. 2. Councilmember Tyron Hampton made sure to communicate that the meeting to discuss the specific plan for this particular area would not be postponed due to weather. But what do you do to make the best out of a stormy situation? You improvise. The event ended up turning into a virtual walking tour and thanks to the hospitality of Principal Lawton Gray everyone in attendance was able to stay warm and dry inside John Muir High School.
The Planning and Community Development Department currently have a hefty agenda as they continue to work on coordinating community workshops to discuss the specific plans for a total of eight areas in the City of Roses. The workshops for each area began last month and will continue through July 2019. This month on the agenda is Lincoln Avenue and local residents at this last meet were prepared to voice their opinion, feedback and concerns about what will be considered to be updated in the city’s specific plan for this particular area.
Neshia Paton, a local resident who has lived on Alberta Street for 16 years, was an advocate for the children in her community. She was an active participant throughout the virtual walking tour and voiced valuable feedback, specifically when the discussion of any update in the city’s specific plan may impact the children in the community.
For example, one of the key plan areas is the intersection of Wyoming Street and Lincoln Avenue right at the edge of John Muir High School. When asked what type of uses they would like to see in these particular corners, Paton suggested something that would benefit the children like a skate-park or a recreational center. “This is a teenage zone; we need the kids to be in their own community.” Paton, a mother of four children who has lived in Pasadena for 40 years, feels it is important to build a community where children can have access to recreational areas nearby. However, Paton’s main concern is that when the renovations and or upgrades are set and done on Lincoln Avenue it may miss to truly represent the culture of her community.
There are several more topics up for review for all of the eight areas getting updated in the city’s specific plan. Topics such as the design for buildings and structures, height and/or overall size of buildings and structures, the density and intensity of development and types of landscaping to name just a few.
However, it would not be a complete updated city specific plan without the overview of the ongoing nuisance almost everyone in Pasadena experiences once or twice, the parking. Even if you don’t live in Pasadena you most certainly can relate. Which raised the question of how can anybody in the community enjoy any of the new structures, businesses and parks being built if there is nowhere to park your vehicle? Someone brought up subterranean parking as a solution, as others suggested perhaps the use of vacant business structures or even designating more parking spaces to local restaurants and or businesses. What do you think could be the ideal solution to the ongoing struggle of finding parking in Pasadena?
This is why these workshops are important. Eight areas is a lot of ground to cover and all of these updates can directly impact you in one way or another. Although some local residents seemed to be skeptical about any enhancement ever getting done on Lincoln Avenue in the near future, by participating in these workshops you are being part of the process of a great plan designed to improve your community.
The next community workshop set to continue the Lincoln Avenue specific plan area will be held at the Hen House on Feb. 28 from 6-8 p.m. You may visit ourpasadena.org for further details and upcoming events.