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What's Worse Than eminent Domain?
Sad Day on Main Street
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Opinions and Editorials

Scott Weimer 1-17-08
Mike Silva 2-7-08
John Scott 2-14-08
Harry J. Krebs 2-14-08
Lennie DeCaro 2-21-08
Peter Katz 2-28-08
Newspaper Articles
(Newest Listed First)
GG Journal 9-18-08
OC News Story 2-20-08
GG Journal 1-17-08
GG Journal 1-10-08
OC News Story 1-4-08
OC Register Story 1-3-08
Real Estate Journal 10-8-07
GG Journal 10-4-07
OC News Story 10-3-07
GG Journal 7-26-07
GG Journal 6-28-07
OC Weekly Expose' 4-26-07
OC Register 4-26-07
GG Journal 4-12-07
OC News Story 4-11-07
OC News Editorial 4-11-07
OC News Editorial 11-17-06
GG Journal 10-26-06
Letter to the Editor
From the Garden Grove Journal February 28, 2008
Solving California's housing crisis is a complex economic challenge. By 2040 there will be 58 million people living in California (twice that of today). In Orange County there is only one home constructed for every four jobs created.
Garden Grove's answer to this problem unfortunately, is to simply stack people in like sardines with no intuitive thinking about how these projects adversely affect the quality of life of the city's long time existing inhabitants. Garden Grove is already the second most densely populated city in the entire county. I don't know that we need more of this simplistic "more is better" type planning. When it comes to low-cost, high-density and second-rate housing, we as a city have already done more than our fair share.
The tax increment dollars that arise out of these "urban infill" projects brings money into the city's redevelopment fund, but only to finance even more high-density redevelopment projects while making a lot of out-of-town developers very rich. That's nice, but I don't think that's what most of us want. High-density projects coupled with poor planning, and little if any public input, leads to disastrous projects like the Main Street condos and others too numerous to mention here. In addition, by taking all these properties off the general tax rolls, we shortchange the operating budgets of our schools, police and fire departments, public works and other public agencies that we depend on to help maintain whatever level of quality of life we have come to know, expect and deserve.
The planning commission must re-adjust it's sights and it's goals. Perhaps some of the upper echelon of the city staff should be made to actually live here in the community that they are creating. I also believe a woman's influence would be a refreshing and positive change on the Commission. It couldn't be any worse. Possibly even the implementation of certain Feng Shui principals could help to ad harmony to the city and its inhabitants. Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese discipline developed to study how the energy of buildings affect people. It is the compatibility expression of people to the building, it's design, it's density, it's environment, and it's parking. If the building has positive characteristics, like breathing room for example, its inhabitants will be happier and the threat of discord will be minimized. If a balance of energy can be maintained with the architecture, landscape and design, then overall productivity, happiness and financial success will improve, and residents in this town might once again become content.
In most cases, this can be done in the design phase. The Sheldon Main Street Project, if destined to go forward, must be completely re-designed for compatibility and success, before the used washing machines, worn-out couches, and broken refrigerators are dumped in the alleyways, and before the taggers find a seventh heaven across it's massive bland and non-descript walls.
Quality residents move away when the quality of life within a community suffers. They are then replaced by those that accept little and contribute even less.
We have an election coming up that demands democratic leadership with vision and compassion. We cannot accept any more "leaders" who reduce our citizens to "comic-book caricatures" that are not given any voice or input into their "governments business".
Peter Katz
Send your contributions and letters to:
Save Historic Main Street
12866 Main Street #100
Garden Grove, Ca. 92840