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Reroute Pier hotel trucks

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by Anthony Higgins

How could the project-contractor for the Strand & Pier Hotel in downtown Hermosa Beach have possibly recommended 27th Street for the estimated 7,000 heavy truck trips be needed to build the hotel? Pier Avenue is the truck-route meant to service the central business district needs?

If Pier Avenue were to be used, there would be virtually no health or quality of life impacts on residents. The hotel project’ two to three-year burden would be placed where it belongs, on those primarily benefiting from the hotel project — the business district.

If the Pier Avenue truck-route can’t be used because of Chamber of Commerce objections, then the Herondo (190th Street)/ Hermosa Avenue route would use roads that are flatter and wider than 27 Street.

Herondo does not border a heavily utilized park like 27th Street does (Valley Park). And on Herondo/190th Street trucks don’t run just inches from a steep, narrow and obstructed sidewalk.

Additionally, homes on Herondo Street are five- to 10-times further than 27th Street homes from the noise, vibration and near-roadway pollution that will be brought about by the hotel’s 7,000, heavy-truck trips.

Noise, vibration, and near-roadway pollution disperse at approximately the “square of the distance;” meaning even small distance differences, say a home 10 feet from the truck traffic and a home 50 feet from this same traffic experience have significantly different negative effects.

Why wasn’t Pier or Herondo Avenue selected by the project contractor?

The answer is simple.

The actions the city has taken on Pier Avenue, Hermosa Avenue, and Herondo have systematically routed more and more truck-traffic to 27th

The basis for this claim can be found by simply looking at the effects of all the stop signs on Pier Avenue, the berms on Herondo that restrict heavy trucks from making wide-right turns from Herondo Street to Hermosa Avenue North and the recent curb extensions installed on Hermosa Avenue at 14th Street that restrict large trucks serving Hermosa Avenue business from using Pier Avenue for egress. These trucks now just continue up to 27th street and use Artesia Boulevard for egress.

Essentially, the city has created a de facto truck route despite the ‘Commercial Trucks over 3 Tons Prohibited” signs posted on 27th east and westbound since the mid-1980s.

Construction trucks, big rigs and crane-carriers restricted from using Herondo by the new berms are now using 27th Street with impunity to service commercial and residential construction jobs in South and Central Hermosa.

The city has not issued a single ticket to an overweight truck since the signs were posted on 27th.

Significantly, the 2017 Plan-Hermosa EIR specifically excluded the 27th Street between Morningside Drive and Manhattan Avenue from the EIR’s road-segment analysis section.

Why would the city exclude one of the busiest, narrowest, steepest road segments from a safety, near-roadway pollution, noise, and vibration section of the EIR?

Once again the answer is simple.

The city knew that 27th street could not meet the minimum acceptable standards for a truck-route, but the city needed 27th as a truck route given the changes made to Pier Avenue, Longfellow, Hermosa Avenue, and Herondo over the years.

The omission of 27th Street from the road segment analysis in the 2017 Plan-Hermosa EIR from was inexcusable.

This process-error leaves 2017 Plan-Hermosa standing on a “legal house of cards,” which, if pursued, could lead the courts to overturn the HB General Plan.

Plan Hermosa called for maintaining the cities small town beach appeal while promoting the downtown business district. But that’s not what is happening.

The city government, the Chamber of Commerce and the downtown business district are in a feeding frenzy with bed-taxes, tobacco taxes and now they want to turn downtown Hermosa into the next great thing; a “must-visit” convention location with all the amenities our beautiful beaches can offer.

The problem is the Chamber of Commerce, the City Bureaucracy and the downtown business district’s feeding frenzy is feeding off the residents quality of life. And that’s not theirs to sell.

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