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West Pasadena Residents' Association
Neighborhood Update
Saturday, April 14 , 2018
Published weekly since 2000

Founded in 1962, the West Pasadena Residents' Association is dedicated to maintaining the character of our neighborhoods and enhancing the quality of life in southwest Pasadena. 

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Justin Chapman


Neighborhood Update
This weekly WPRA eNewsletter is emailed each Saturday morning to more than 1,600 residents of Pasadena and beyond.

NOTE: The following meeting dates, times and agenda items are accurate as of Saturday morning.  Click on the appropriate blue headline to ensure the meeting hasn't been cancelled or rescheduled.

MONDAY, April 16
6 p.m.
Council Chambers, City Hall, 100 N. Garfield Ave.
On the agenda:
  • Glenarm capital public art contract award (staff report)
  • Resolution declaring the results of the majority protest proceedings and establishing the Pasadena Tourism Business Improvement District (staff report)
  • Submittal of public housing agency annual plan to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (staff report)
  • Ordinance amending municipal code for parcel at 620-624 S. Pasadena Ave. (staff report)
  • Ordinance revising municipal code regulations for accessory dwelling units (staff report)

PUSD English Learners Advisory Committee
6:30 p.m.
119 W. Palm St.
On the agenda: Summer programs; Annual Language Census; Review district's reclassification procedures; Reports.

TUESDAY, April 17
City Council Economic Development & Technology Committee
4:15 p.m.
Council Chambers, City Hall, 100 N. Garfield Ave.
On the agenda: Approval of the key business terms of a rehabilitation loan agreement with Villa Los Robles Apartments LP, not to exceed $1,050,000 to rehabilitate the Villa Los Robles project at 473 N. Los Robles Ave.; Information on Accessory Dwelling Unit pilot funding program.

6 p.m.
Hale Building, 175 N. Garfield Ave.
On the agenda: Selection of 2018 Preservation Award recipients.


6 p.m.
La Pintoresca Branch, 1355 N. Raymond Ave.
On the agenda:  Director's report; Work plan; Branch reports.

6 p.m.
Council Chambers, City Hall, 100 N. Garfield Ave.
On the agenda: Colorado Bridge Task Force recommendations to deter suicide attempts on the Colorado Street Bridge; Monthly police chief report.

Click for the latest  Pasadena City Commission  |Facts| and |Vacancies|
"The state has just bulldozed us."

- Mayor Terry Tornek, referring to recent California state laws that supersede local planning needs as the city comes to terms with increasing density in its neighborhoods. See "City grapples with density question" in the Editor's Top News Picks section below for more information.
The public is invited to attend the regular WPRA board meetings, held at 6:30 p.m. the first Wednesday of the month (except MayAugust, and December) in the Westridge School Community Room (unless otherwise noted), 324 Madeline Dr. Park in the State St. lot and walk north across campus to the Community Room. 

WPRA seeks email newsletter editors
Do you have writing and editing skills? If so, you can help the WPRA achieve its mission of informing the community. Send an email to update@wpra.net to volunteer to serve as one of several co-editors of WPRA's weekly Neighborhood Update email newsletter. It will only take a few hours a week (on your own schedule) in the month or two a year in which you'd serve. We'll train you.

The West Pasadena Residents' Association cordially invites you to its 56th annual meeting on  Wednesday, May 2, in the Westridge School, 324 Madeline Dr. (Parking is free in the south parking lot at the corner of South Orange Grove and State Street; enter from State Street.) The evening starts at  5:30 p.m. with a reception, during which you can enjoy light refreshments and visit with many community organizations that will be exhibiting their services and programs. The theme of the business program, which will begin at 6:30 p.m., is "Housing and the character of our community." What gave rise to the idea was the literal tsunami of new laws from the State legislature to "solve" the State's general housing and affordable housing shortages. These new laws, many of which became effective on January 1, supersede many local residential zoning and housing regulations. Among the topics we'll discuss during the evening are these newly-legislated state planning laws as well as accessory dwelling units, mansionization, the short-term rental ordinance and affordable housing. Also, the WPRA will formally recognize those whose activities have materially improved the quality of life in west Pasadena, and our members will elect officers and directors for the 2018-2019 WPRA fiscal year.


Est. attendance: 1,000+

Event hours:
2:30 p.m.: East & west extension closed
3:30 p.m.: Amplified sound begins
6 p.m.: Walk begins
8:30 p.m.: Event & amplified sound concludes

Event location: Lot F, Standard Rose Bowl Loop and East Extension
Event parking: Lots B, F, and K; no charge

The Recreational Loop will remain open at all times for pedestrian traffic only, the loop will not be open for bicycle traffic. The Equestrian Loop will remain open at all times.

Street closures: East and west extension only.

Sound and amplification: Amplified sound will occur for both events, however, the noise ordinance will not be waived and sound levels will be monitored by a sound technician.

For any resident questions or concerns, please contact the Rose Bowl Event Day Resident hotline at (626) 397-4141.

Complete the online questionnaire about the city's Specific Plans. 

Nearly nine years after Pasadena first decided to enhance the pathway that connects the East Arroyo neighborhood to the Central Arroyo Seco, the project is finally complete. The project included improvements to the trail itself, as well as upgraded drainage and habitat restoration. To celebrate, Councilman Tyron Hampton is hosting a ribbon-cutting and light trail walk from 9 to 10 a.m. today, Saturday, April 14. The event will take place at N. Arroyo Blvd. between Del Monte St. and Howard St.

Caltrans announced plans today to close the eastbound I-210 Mountain St. on-ramp in the city of Pasadena for an extended period of time beginning next week. Starting the night of Monday, April 16, crews will pave the shoulder and roadway across from the eastbound I-210 Mountain St. on-ramp. The ramp is expected to reopen the second week of May.

The Civic Center Task Force's next meeting will be held at  6 p.m. on Thursday, April 19. The facilitator will review the 3/15/18 visioning session and consensus building, and there will be a discussion on a recommendation to City Council about setbacks/open space, building height, land use, and public improvements.

Arlington Garden will host Art on Palm, a one-day art exhibit and sale of the works of local ceramists, collage, fiber and glass artists, jewelers, painters, photographers and woodworkers set in the 'alfresco rooms' of Arlington Garden, from  10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on  Saturday, April 21, 2018In addition, Art on Palm raises funds for the Creative Arts Group of Sierra Madre and Arlington Garden. The event will present 50 artists and include light snacks and gentle entertainment. Art on Palm is one of LA County's finest boutique art events.

An update on Orange Grove traffic improvements at Madison's town hall
An update on traffic improvements on north-south Orange Grove Blvd. will be presented at a town hall meeting hosted by Councilman Steve Madison at  6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 26, at the Tournament House, focusing on pedestrian safety, as well as other neighborhood changes including short term rentals, accessory dwelling units, development,
public safety, the Colorado Bridge, YWCA site planning, and more. Transportation Department staff will present a Complete Streets Plan which is the outcome of several meetings between staff, a number of residents from S. Orange Grove Blvd., and Madison's office. The main goal is to create a safer street experience for pedestrians and drivers. Your input is needed in order to move forward with the proposal. David Reyes, director of Planning, and Lt. Peter Hettema, area commander for District 6, will make short presentations and be ready to respond to your questions.

The project will enhance the main entrance to the Lower Arroyo Seco, through April 30 from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. (no work on Sundays or holidays). One of the driveway entrances to the Lower Arroyo Seco will be maintained and opened at all time during construction. An Inspector from the city's Department of Public Works, wearing a safety vest and city identification, will be present on the job site most of the time to answer questions or provide assistance if needed. If you cannot locate an inspector, please contact the Department of Public Works at (626) 744-6736 .

Through October 31, outdoor watering is permitted  up to three days per week before 9 a.m. and after 6 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Recent rains have helped, but Pasadena's precipitation levels are still well below normal. Please do your part to conserve and water only as needed.

Pasadena, you've got City Hall's attention
"Pasadena City Hall is all ears with not one, but two major online citizen surveys now underway. One of the surveys solicits information for the ' Our Pasadena' program, which intends to gather as much community input as possible on how the city's growth and development process should be implemented. The other survey, ' Join the Conversation,' will help the city as it prepares to plan and adopt the fiscal year 2019 budget." Pasadena Now

Toilets tempest: Local residents protest new proposed Desiderio Park restroom
"Despite numerous reminders by Design Commission Chair Yong Yoo that the commission had no jurisdiction over placement, safety concerns, or even the existence of a proposed new public restroom for Desiderio Park, numerous residents came before the commission Tuesday evening at City Hall to discuss those very issues. Eventually the commission voted to request that Public Works return, most likely in May, with new plans that incorporate roof and design changes." Pasadena Now

Fears of 'Honda-Dena' at Arroyo Seco meeting
"As the leadership of the Arroyo Seco Foundation and the Arroyo Advisory Group detailed their ongoing plans for restoring and maintaining the Arroyo Seco and Hahamongna, Foundation members voiced their concerns about the specter of over-commercialization of the local habitat in and around the Rose Bowl." Pasadena Now

Pasadena Unified superintendent: District will discontinue bus service for general education students
"In light of the district's budget situation, general education transportation service can no longer be offered and will be discontinued in the 2018-19 school year as $12 million in reductions in the Fiscal Stabilization Plan and Second Interim Report are implemented." Pasadena Now

"Union Station Homeless Services announced its board of directors has selected Anne Miskey - a nationally recognized voice on the issue of homelessness - as the organization's next Chief Executive Officer. Miskey, who formerly served as CEO at the Downtown Women's Center, will succeed Howard A. Kahn, Union Station's Interim CEO, on June 11." Pasadena Now

City grapples with density question
"Coming to terms with increasing density in its neighborhoods, state laws which supersede local planning needs, and a possible need for more 'specific' specific plans were themes of a presentation to City Council by Planning and Community Development Department Director David Reyes Monday evening." Pasadena Now

Queen Anne home built in 1888 for mapmaker Andrew McNally hits the market
"A Queen Anne-style mansion in Altadena built in 1888 for mapmaker Andrew McNally is for sale for the first time in 65 years. The 6,938-square foot, nine-bedroom house at 654 E. Mariposa St. is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The manse was designed by Frederick Roehrig, architect of Pasadena's landmark Castle Green." OC Register

"The first freeway in the United States is the 110 in Southern California, which began life as the Arroyo Seco Parkway. These days, the 110 doesn't just connect parts of the geographical area, it also links various episodes in the region's history." Truck Trend Network

Looking for other ways to entertain or educate yourself and your family? 
For current events around the area, we encourage you to visit our local news outlets. Click on the publication title to visit that publication's events section (alphabetical order).
Monthly WPRA board meeting dates and locations are on the WPRA website. Click on the headline above or visit our website and look under "Meetings and Events."

... to serve your community and do it with a group of your neighbors who are equally dedicated. If you live within our service area, we'd welcome your help.
  • Got the local news bug? Just curious about your city (and would like to share news with 1,600 or so of your closest friends), consider serving as a co-editor of Neighborhood Update. It will only take a few hours a week (on your own schedule) in the month or two a year in which you'd serve. We'll train you.  
  • We have lots of opportunities to serve on one of our many committees:
    • Land use and planning
      If you care about how we use our land  
    • Education
      If you want to help save public education for West Pasadena  
    • Open space & conservation
      If you care about preserving open space and conservation of land and resources 
    • Membership
      If you'd like to help us continue to build our membership so we can do more  
If you'd like to chat about ways we could help you become more involved or, more likely, more effective (by helping us), send an email to WPRA President. Tell him about your interests.     
To learn more

Visit wpra.net and "like" our Facebook page  

To submit information for the Neighborhood Update, send it to update@wpra.net. 


Joseph Stoddard's watercolors: The WPRA is grateful to local artist Joseph Stoddard, who has generously allowed us to display his watercolors in our quarterly newsletter, The (WPRA) News; on the WPRA website; and in this publication. To explore Mr. Stoddard's work, visit josephstoddard.com.