A group of Azusa residents who oppose the city’s plans for a four-story Gold Line parking structure behind City Hall are planning a protest rally on Saturday.
The original plans for the parking structure placed it on the north side of the railroad tracks, across Azusa Avenue from Target. The city, hoping to use the Gold Line site for a retail establishment, has proposed building it on the site of Veterans Freedom Park
The Save Azusa Civic Center Park Committee (SACCPC), naturally opposes the idea.
To show just how ugly the parking structure will be, the group has put together a simulation of what they think it will look like. They photoshopped a picture of an Irwindale parking structure over the park – with remarkably realistic looking results.
For those interested in the rally, it will start at Azusa Avenue and Fifth Street on Saturday at 11 a.m. The marchers will head from there to the park for the rally at noon. Mayor Joe Rocha and Azusa Unified School Board Member Yolanda R. Pena may even be there.
Long after residents dissuaded San Dimas from locating a future Gold Line station at Bonita and Cataract, the city is still discussing the best place to put a station.
The Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension Construction Authority is currently studying a site south of the tracks between Walnut and San Dimas avenues, and held a community meeting Thursday to gather information for its environmental report, due in draft form by late summer.
The desired site is now occupied by Storage Solutions, and the business owners aren’t happy about the idea. But city and train limitations leave few other options for a 400-car parking structure that isn’t taller than two stories. Other ideas include the auto shop and kennel next door, and expanding the park and ride across San Dimas Avenue. There’s also the undeveloped part of the Grove Station project, but Community Development Director Larry Stevens is pessimistic about that possibility because of entitlements attached to the property and the city’s vision for mixed-use development.
The light-rail train’s arrival is years away, probably a decade. It currently operates from L.A. to Pasadena, and construction is now underway on a Pasadena to Azusa extension.
Glendora Councilman Doug Tessitor was named the chairman of the Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension Construction Authority Board of Directors (try saying that title in one breath).
A councilman since 2003 (up for re-election in March 2011) Tessitor has been the Pasadena City appointee to the board since Jan. 2009 and served on the Joint Powers Authority board since Nov. 2008.
“This is a very exciting time for the project and the Construction Authority, and I am honored to lead the board as we begin construction on the nearly $700 million project that will connect communities from Arcadia to Azusa to the entire L.A. County system, create thousands of jobs and generate nearly a billion dollars for our region,” Tessitor said in a written statement.
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