Dear Elected Officials and Staff:
This story from today’s Pasadena Star News about Congressman Schiff’s impatience with Forest Service progress on the Rim of the Valley is FYI and very timely and important. It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when further protections will be in place protecting the National Monument, National Forest, Rim of the Valley and local open space areas from damaging proposals such as the East Corridor routes proposed for the Palmdale to Burbank project section. We have written you all previously about how clear the intent of voters, the public and stakeholders are with respect to protecting the environment, along with our serious concerns about CHSRA plans to study, build, tunnel and operate high speed rail in the Monument/Forest and sensitive environmental areas.
We think recent CHSRA efforts to portray East Corridor routes as being “under” the Forest (and therefore not as damaging or illegal as at-grade or elevated bridges), as well as presentations showing how some of the 8+ million cubic yards of dirt/debris might be moved by conveyor rather than trucks, are fairly desperate efforts to appease legislators/policymakers while trying to legitimize clearly infeasible and damaging routes. In addition, we are concerned about newer evolutions of the various routes that go above ground and then tunnel frequently/intermittently, particularly in the northern portion of the Palmdale to Burbank project section, to avoid being above ground in the Forest.
We think CHSRA is trying to play peek-a-boo with Mother Nature and that’s not good policy or practice.
The following members of Congress signed Congressman Schiff’s letter and are aligned with Congressman Schiff on this issue: Judy Chu, D-Pasadena; Karen Bass, D-Los Angeles; Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Commerce; Tony Cardenas, D-Panorama City and Ted Lieu, D-Manhattan Beach.
We renew our call to eliminate all Forest routes from inclusion in any future environmental impact reports and from further consideration as high speed rail routes.
President, Shadow Hills Property Owners Association
Member, S.A.F.E. Coalition (www.DontRailroad.Us)