Jan 19, 2014
Piedmont City Council, Tuesday, January 21, 2014, at 7:30 pm, City Hall
Come to the City Council meeting and see the presentation of the proposed landscape improvement plan for Blair Park.
This will be the only opportunity to comment on the landscape plan for Blair Park, prepared by Restoration Design Group (RDG), before the Council votes on it. RDG has done an excellent job of designing a vision for Blair Park that includes new plantings, a pedestrian path, removal of dead and dying trees, and long-deferred maintenance of existing oaks and other native plants.
Unfortunately, the City staff report is recommending that the Council approve the Piedmont Park Commission’s proposal to divide the design plan into two phases and proceed ONLY with Phase 1, which is nothing more than deferred maintenance. The Park Commission concluded that Phase 2 should wait until a traffic study is conducted and further stated, “the entire community should be consulted and Citywide consensus reached in support of any future development for Blair Park….through surveys, referendum or vote.”
Friends of Moraga Canyon asserts that the Settlement Agreement of our lawsuit, executed by the City Council, requires approval forthwith of RDG’s complete landscape design plan, not just the deferred maintenance proposed in Phase 1. We believe the City must commit to a tree replanting plan and pedestrian pathway improvements (at a minimum) in order to comply with the legal requirements of the Settlement Agreement as well as with the “scope of work” specified in the contract with RDG.
FOMC also contends that RDG’s landscape improvement plan (both Phase 1 and 2) does not increase access to the park (in fact it removes parking spaces) and does not change the current use of the park, as claimed by the Park Commission and City staff.
FOMC has sent a letter to the City Council outlining our objections in response to the staff’s recommendation.
Blair Park is the first item on the Council agenda. We urge you to attend the presentation; it is important to our city. If you cannot attend in person, please write to the City Council with your thoughts (a sample email is included below); then tune in on KCOM or stream the meeting live through the city’s website on Tuesday. You can view the staff report and design plans on the city website as well.
Again, we urge you to attend the presentation as it contains much more information than what is in the staff report. Your comments on the design plan will be extremely beneficial.
Thank you for your ongoing support of Blair Park. RDG’s landscape design plan will accomplish what we have all been working so hard to achieve – a beautiful, natural, open-space park that serves as a lovely gateway to Piedmont – but only if it is fully executed in a way that meets the terms of the Settlement Agreement.
If you have any questions, please contact us.
You may email your comments to City Council via John Tulloch, City Clerk, at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sample email to City Council:
Dear City Council members,
I urge Council to approve the complete landscape design plan for Blair Park (Phases 1 and 2) prepared by RDG. Approving only Phase I will not meet the design requirements agreed to in the Settlement Agreement between Friends of Moraga Canyon and the City of Piedmont. Since RDG has developed a concept for the entire plan, it makes no sense and would be a waste of money to approve only the first phase. The city can determine how to implement the plan over time, as funding becomes available.
* Include here any specific comments you may have regarding the design elements of the Blair Park Landscape Improvement Plan *