Readers comments 3-29-19
Thank you for the March 15 obituary for Marilee Scaff. Marilee and her husband, Alvin, were an important part of our lives since our college days beginning in the late ‘40s. Alvin was always a quiet, but sturdy comrade.
On the other hand, Marilee never left anyone unclear about her commitment, concerns, and convictions! She was one of our closest non-relative “relatives.” Always close, sometimes as mother, or older sister, social arbiter, crusader, or advocate for the wisest careful way.
At the close of a long life of amazingly selfless service, she richly deserved a quiet and peaceful conclusion of her gallant life. We shall miss her! Gratefully,
Ray and Barbara Fowler
(With a hello to all our Claremont friends from Shreveport, LA in retirement with our daughter Sarah)
The Claremont Village Marketing Group and their volunteers should be commended for putting on another successful Pie Festival. This event promotes family fun and is a good representation of the values of the community. Good job!
Claremont Film Festival
Bus stop funding
I am stunned after reading about the proposals for complete renovations of bus stops throughout our city in last week’s COURIER.
I will ignore the new designs that are causing more problems than they are worth, since these designs are not nearly as problematic as the funding proposals.
I am usually all for spending over a million dollars on public transportation, but for it to go towards improving already acceptable bus stops as opposed to adding additional means of transportation just seems wasteful. Southern California is known for our decrepit roads and bridges as well as our abysmal public transportation, so why waste taxpayer money on new bus stops that don’t solve these problems?
While all of the possible sources of funding could be used for far better projects, my biggest concern is with any money coming from a CalTrans grant. CalTrans recently increased its funding through Senate Bill 1 (SB1).
After SB1 was upheld in the most recent election it secured a huge increase in funding for CalTrans by increasing per gallon gas taxes by $0.30 along with an increase in vehicle license fees varying between $25 to $125.
Despite my frustration that this tax was able to pass, it is a loss I have accepted. What I will not accept though is that this money goes toward projects as useless and unnecessary as these bus stop designs. Not only will these proposed bus stops leave you soaked in the rain and scalding in the sun, they will not improve public transportation in this city. In fact, it will do the exact opposite.
For example, my bus ride to work in Glendora will still take over an hour, but now I’ll be sitting underneath a bus stop that constantly reminds me of the money our government continues to waste.
Perhaps our Pooch Park needs help? Perhaps we need another Pooch Park in this city. We have one leash-free zone for dogs in a town that keeps building new housing which usually means many more dogs. How about a Pooch Park in the northern part? The now open ex-La Puerta space would be perfect.
I understand the school district would like the dollars that a housing developer would bring, but maybe they could work with the city on that and then we could have something—like more parks—that would benefit all of us.
Net zero for Village South
Recently some meetings have been held on the topic of the nature and scope of the Village South project in Claremont, and specifically on the issue of “net zero” for these buildings to be built in the heart of our city. (“Net zero” simply refers to all buildings generating, storing and managing their own power or through the use of a “micro-grid,” which would interconnect the buildings to achieve the same goal.)
I was certainly happy to learn that we all want to see the Village South project filled with net zero buildings! However, when we see the graphics from the planners without a single solar panel, the actions don’t seem to be matching the rhetoric.
When the Sargent Town Planning document regarding “Guiding Principles” for the Village South Specific Plan leaves to the very last page some vague “efforts” at sustainability rather than some hard mandates for generation, storage and management of power, we are not headed in the direction of net zero buildings. Net zero for the Village South project needs to be at the top of the priority list.
The solar resource in the 91711 zip code for a 17-acre parcel is spectacular. A single solar panel with 22 square feet of generation will produce upwards of 548 kilowatt hours of power per year (using a 385 watt panel) in our city. If we plan for well-insulated living spaces, the estimate for each person living in the Village South apartments and homes will use 15 kilowatt hours of power per day (average) with an annual use of 5,475 kilowatt hours per person. Ten solar panels per person would suffice to achieve the goal of net zero buildings.
No one is suggesting that the entire 17 acres be covered with solar panels, but to understand that 18.5 million kilowatt hours of power could be created by the 17 acres is a guide to designing for net zero buildings on the site.
This generation would accommodate the needs of 3,378 people. And no one is suggesting that number of residents will be living in the Village South project buildings. However, to fail to appreciate these facts about the site and the reality of generating, storing and management of power is not the road to net zero buildings.
Let’s face facts. Developers are lusting after the opportunity to build on the very entry to the city of Claremont. Why? Because Claremont is one of the most desirable cities in the Inland Empire for living, for working and for playing. And all that translates into money for developers.
As residents of the City of Trees we can use that built-in advantage to achieve some important environment goals we all want and insist upon. After all, as Chris Veirs, principal planner for the city of Claremont, said at a public meeting on July 23 of last year, “The citizens of Claremont can have anything they want on the Village South plot of land.”
Well, we want a firm commitment (read mandate) for net zero buildings on the Village South project site.
Peter L. Coye
Chairman, Friends of the
Village South Project