29 petitions

Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to Steve Hagerty, Judy Fiske, Peter Braithwaite, Melissa Wynne, Don Wilson, Robin Rue Simmons, Tom Suffredin, Eleanor Revelle, Ann Rainey, Cicely Fleming

City of Evanston: Stop the Mega-Development on Sherman

The City of Evanston is considering another mega-development that threatens the welcoming character of our city. In accordance with Evanston’s Downtown Plan, the 1450-1508 block of Sherman Avenue is a key “transitional” block between Evanston’s downtown and the city’s historic residential neighborhoods. This inviting, human-scale block is home to a number of independent restaurants and storefronts, including Tommy Nevins and Prairie Moon. A for-profit developer called Albion has submitted a 287-unit, 16-story proposal that threatens the unique character and quality of Evanston’s downtown. The former Chair of the Zoning Board of Appeals said “I cannot recall any building proposal that was as inappropriate for the site proposed as this development for Sherman Avenue.” In fact, the proposed development violates the city’s own zoning guidelines: the proposal includes too many units and too few parking spaces, is too close to the sidewalk, and is far too tall. Even still, the development fails to provide sufficient onsite affordable housing, instead catering to the already oversaturated high-end luxury rental market. The building - which is unlikely to provide sufficient tax-revenue - may further exacerbate Evanston’s affordability crisis, undermine Evanston’s fair housing opportunities, create severe wind tunnels, and cause serious congestion. Despite these concerns, neither the City nor the developer have conducted a single study on the building’s impact. Thoughtful development is critical to a city’s success. Let’s reimagine this block of Sherman Avenue in a vibrant, human-scale way incorporating sufficient on-site affordable housing, respecting the city’s Downtown Plan, and reflecting Evanston’s unique and welcoming character. Tell the City that this high-rise, mega-development is contrary to the interests and values of Evanston. Tell City Council to reject the Albion plan. After signing this petition, please click here to share the reasons for your opposition on the city's co-urbanize website.

Evanstonians for Responsible Planning
2,047 supporters
Update posted 5 days ago

Petition to Waltham City Council President Diane LeBlanc

Prevent Another Major Fire in Waltham

In August 2017, Waltham suffered the worst fire in the modern history of the city when five luxury apartment towers at the corner of Cooper & Elm Streets went up in flames while under construction. The developers have refused to meet with citizens while claiming that they will rebuild. The city councilor for the ward, Robert Logan, has refused to meet with us as well. Citizens of the City of Waltham, please sign this petition asking the Waltham City Council to prevent the redevelopment of this site and to have Councilor Logan—who took donations from the developers and their attorneys in 2014—recuse himself from the vote, which he did not do when the project was first permitted by the City Council that year. The fire at Cooper and Elm Streets was so large because the council allowed it to be overdeveloped. The subsequent fire placed the lives of first responders at risk. It placed the lives of elderly citizens who live next door at risk. It placed the lives of disabled people at risk. It placed one of the most historic structures in the Boston area at risk. There were concerns about this development from the start, when it came before the council in 2014. As reported at the time the council fast-tracked the review process anyway, over the objections of two of their fifteen members as well as a number of expert municipal employees. The council moved so swiftly, they never even informed neighbors that they were going to vote on the project before they approved it, which is against the law. They then had to re-take the vote, and again allowed it to proceed by a wide margin. The entire effort was led by Councilor Logan, who received donations to his campaign, but never recused himself from the vote. The fire in August potentially spread hazardous material from the dirt below—the site was long-contaminated and there is no evidence of remediation—into the air. It caused substantial damage to the elderly housing next door. It incinerated a neighboring business. It also spewed noxious materials into the Charles River. Councilor Logan quickly took to the airwaves to denounce the method of construction, and he did interviews for the newspaper. Yet he never disclosed that his campaign accepted funds from the same builders who used that method of construction. When constituents asked for meetings, he cancelled on them. So did the developers. When we held one anyway, he didn’t respond or come. Now, it appears that the developers wish to rebuild at the site, without having addressed any constituent concerns. On Thursday, September 7, the executive vice president for the development company stated that they were going to proceed and rebuild exactly the same project in the same location using the same building materials in the reconstruction. Developers should not be able to buy off our politicians with impunity. Politicians should not be able to put the citizenry at risk. That is just what they are poised to get away with all over again. Therefore, we ask Council President Diane LeBlanc to (1) Initiate the process to revoke the developers’ permit to use the site as previously approved, due to safety, fire apparatus-access, density, and building materials concerns. (2) Set in motion a process to prevent the over-development of the site as previously approved. (3) Require that Councilor Robert Logan (Ward 9) disclose all financial ties, past and present, personal and as a political candidate, to any people with a financial stake in the purchase or sale of the parcels that now comprise Cooper and Elm Street, including their representatives past or present. (4) Require Councilor Logan to recuse himself from all future votes on any items that relate to this property, directly or indirectly.

Donald Desrochers
295 supporters
Update posted 2 months ago

Petition to Michael LoGrande (Director, L.A. City Planning), Mike Bonin, Eric Garcetti, VNC Board, LUPC , Tricia Keane, Kevin Jones


We the undersigned call for the following:  - an immediate moratorium on the  'McMansionization' of VENICE - an immediate moratorium on Small Lot Subdivisions (SLS) in VENICE - a denial of all Small Lot Subdivisions currently pending for VENICE - no building permits to be issued for Small Lot Subdivisions prior to recordation of final map In VENICE - FULL public notification and participation, as set forth by Federal, State, and Local Law, in any and all proposed developments in VENICE. Additionally, we the undersigned call for full enforcement of  the California Coastal Act, the Mello Act, and the Venice Coastal Zone Specific Plan, because the cumulative effect of recent development in VENICE is diminishing the quality of life for it’s residents, and negating the purpose of said protections put in place to preserve the Coastal Zone. Here are 3 consistent and repeated ways that the City is ignoring and violating Venice Coastal Zone Specific Plan (VCZSP):1. City Planning is interpreting the Small Lot Subdivision Ordinance (SLSO) to trump the Specific Plan, although the law says that specific plans always trump ordinances. The City is interpreting the Small Lot Subdivision Ordinance to allow more units on lots than the Specific Plan allows, and is not requiring any guest parking at all, and is allowing tandem parking that people often don't use, rather than side-by-side parking.2. Allowing buildings to be constructed to the maximum possible size even when the proposed building is totally out of scale with the neighborhood i.e. three story buildings that block all of the neighbors' sunlight in a one-story or two-story neighborhood. The Specific Plan requires an evaluation of the compatibility of the mass and scale of the proposed building with the other buildings in the neighborhood. The Planning Department does not do this, and they have set up a process where there is no appeal. If the Planning Department continues to get away with this, soon Venice will be all 3-story compounds with very little sun or air between the buildings. 3. The Planning Department is issuing illegal DIRs that blatantly violate the Specific Plan. Then the City says that there's no appeal because the 14-day deadline has passed. The community has no real notice and no opportunity to respond. The City refuses to email citizens a .pdf of the DIRs as they are issued, they only send a mailed copy.Whereas per The CA Coastal Act. Section 30116 Sensitive Coastal Resource Areas – Venice has the following characteristics:b.  areas possessing significant recreational value.c. Special communities or neighborhoods which are significant visitor designation areas.Areas that provide existing coastal housing or recreational opportunities for low- and moderate income-persons.The public has a right to fully participate in decisions affecting coastal planning, conservation and development.From Section 30250 Location; existing developed area:“In addition, land divisions, other than leases for agricultural uses, outside existing developed areas shall be permitted only where 50 percent of the usable parcels in the area have been developed and the created parcels would be no smaller than the average size of surrounding parcels.”Section 30251 Scenic and visual qualities:“Permitted development shall be sited and designed to protect views to and along the ocean and scenic coastal areas. Section 30252 (e) and enhancement of public access:Where appropriate, protect special communities and neighborhoods that, because of their unique characteristics, are popular visitor destination points for recreational uses.”

869 supporters