Harvard-Westlake’s parking expansion: wrong for Studio City, a dangerous precedent for all of Los Angeles.
• The Harvard-Westlake school wants to build a 3-story, 750-car garage on protected land
• On top of the garage they want to put a football-sized field with lighting towers
• To connect the garage to the campus they want to build a 163-ft long bridge over Coldwater
• 147 protected trees in a rare Oak/Walnut habitat will be removed
• Wildlife habitats forever destroyed
• Increased traffic from 30 months of construction, and then hundreds more cars coming to Coldwater
• OVER 9 months with 160 + truck trips per day, Mon-Fri and Saturdays (8am-4pm)
• One school asking the City for NUMEROUS and EXTREME exceptions to limits on Hillside development
• School refuses to offer any other reasonable alternatives, such as smaller-scale field w/ more modest increase in parking spaces on the existing campus.
HOW CAN THIS PROJECT POSSIBLY GO FORWARD?!
SURELY THE CITY WON’T LET THE SCHOOL GET SPECIAL TREATMENT?
ONLY IF YOU JOIN US AND SPEAK UP!
Please join the Studio City Neighborhood Council, the Studio City Residents Association, the Hillside Federation, the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, the Valley Village Homeowners Association, the Greater Valley Glen Neighborhood Council, Citizens for LA Wildlife, Sierra Club of SFV, the California Native Plants Society, the SFV Audubon Society, and the Community Forest Advisory Committee in OPPOSING this unnecessary and destructive project!
The total excavation and construction is estimated to take almost THREE YEARS. The City’s report found that noise levels from construction will exceed acceptable thresholds – even AFTER mitigations – which means sensitive people are supposed to avoid being outside during the 30 months of construction!
Putting young children, the elderly and the school’s own student athletes at risk just so the School can have more parking is unconscionable.
Any delays on Coldwater affect traffic on Beverly Glen and Laurel Canyon, as well as other hillside routes. For THREE YEARS! After it’s built, traffic will undoubtedly get worse — expert traffic report describes delays caused from inadequate turn lanes and a change in traffic flow into the new garage.
We all know the saying: Build it and they will come. Either the garage will sit empty (and therefore isn’t needed), or MORE CARS will crowd our neighborhood. Coldwater traffic is bad enough!
Read the Brohard & Associates Traffic Impact Report (Aug. 2017)PDF
Until 2013 when this garage was proposed, the school argued time and again to the City (since 1992) that they have “ample” parking to meet their needs. Other LA schools in residential hillside communities have embraced carpooling and nearby shuttles during special events — LOWERING their carbon footprint.
Harvard-Westlake should be a leader in environmental stewardship and work with the community to minimize its impact on the environment and nearby residences.
Wexco International prepared an expert report detailing numerous SAFETY CONCERNS with the project:
1) Moving students across Coldwater Canyon is inherently less safe.
2) The structure with the narrow bridge as its only outlet is UNSAFE in an emergency.
(Wexco Safety Report 2016, Mar. 2016)
3) Current bus loading and unloading (right at the School’s entrance) and students who walk from residential streets (on the East side of Coldwater) ARE SAFE.
Moving pedestrian traffic across the Canyon Road and expanding to the West of Coldwater IS WHAT IS UNSAFE.
(Wexco Safety Report 2017, Aug. 2017)
160+ diesel truck trips EACH DAY, huge diesel vehicles, excavation and hauling of over 137,000 cubic yards of earth all create dust and small particulate emissions. These are known to put sensitive people (elderly, preschoolers, and student athletes) at risk for respiratory illness and potential long term health issues.
More than two-thirds of the project site is designated “desirable open space”. That kind of land gets extra-protection. The “heavily vegetated” land (DEIR, p. 3.5-3) is directly adjacent to Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy land, and the project site is part of the known wildlife corridor that runs East of the 405 through the Santa Monica Mountains. This green open space land should NOT be urbanized.
The Hillside Federation and the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy saw the importance of protecting this open space from urbanization and both voted unanimously to oppose such a massive development on the West side of Coldwater Canyon.