January 20, 2014

Dear SMCLC Supporters,

Santa Monica is at a tipping point.

Tuesday, January 28, will be a historic opportunity to determine the direction of our city.
On that evening, our City Council will vote on the massive Hines/Papermate project at 26th and Olympic. (Also known as the Bergamot Transit "Village").

This development will be one of the largest in Santa Monica's history, and is located in the most congested part of our city.

If you attend only one Council meeting this year, this is the most important one. You don't need to speak.Your presence will be your voice.

Make no mistake: a development this big, in this part of the city, would be a disaster for residents, impacting traffic not just in that area, but for miles around.

This is a vote that could very well be determined by a four-to-three majority. Residents showing up in force may be the determining factor.

If you do wish to speak, here are a several points we invite you to make:

The developer's own Environmental Impact Report says its project will cause an additional 7,000 additional car trips per day. (That's regardless of the Expo light rail that is under construction). These extra car trips will be added to dozens of streets and intersections which are already woefully inadequate to handle their current load. The impact of this additional traffic is unmitigatable.

All of Santa Monica will be affected as commuters seek other ways to get in and out of this part of the city.

In spite of the Land Use and Circulation Element (LUCE) and the city's urging, Hines made NO EFFORT to work with city groups to plan this project. From the beginning, Hines has informed residents what it wants and what it intends to build. This is a terrible precedent for our city: i.e., a large developer dictating what it will build with no community input regarding the size and scale of the project.

The proposed project is too big for this site and would have too many negative impacts. Coming in at one-and-a-half times the size of Santa Monica Place, and across the street from the Water Gardens-- a commercial project of 1,270,000 sq. ft.-- Hines is proposing building an additional 765,000 sq. ft. and more than half of it will be commercial, generating three times the traffic as residential.

Please come to Council chambers at 1685 Main Street on January 28 at 6:30 pm to make residents' voices heard. This decision will impact Santa Monica for generations. It's vital that you be there.


Victor, Diana, Sherrill, Jeff