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Friday, February 3, 2023


Important Topics

Craftsman Mall Dorms Environmental Impact Report is flawed

The Cal Poly's EIR says "Therefore, no additional fire protection facilities are anticipated to be necessary for AFD to adequately serve the project site, and no significant decrease in response time is expected. Impacts would be less than significant." -------- This is directly refuted by the Arcata Fire District. It is not safe for people to live in 7-story buildings that do not have adequate fire and emergency protection.

Fire Danger in Arcata High-Rises — Three-minute video from Eric Black

*** A MUST-SEE VIDEO *** 2-minute 47-seconds by Eric Black, taken from the January 10, 2023, Planning Commission meeting. Eric Loudenslager of the Arcata Fire District Board of Directors spoke on how the AFD is unable to provide adequate fire protection and emergency services to the residents of a building over four stories -- and even a four-story building is a dicey situation. The AFD is saying that no more taller buildings should be built until this situation is conclusively resolved. *** A MUST-SEE VIDEO ***

Will we see 7-story buildings in the Gateway Area ?

Three local experts are telling us that tall buildings can not feasibly be built in the Gateway Plan: the Arcata Fire District, Danco president Chris Dart, and renown sea level rise specialist Aldaron Laird. Has the time finally arrived that we might want to listen to people with knowledge and experience?

Fred Weis speaks to the Planning Commission on Sea Level Rise – January 10, 2023

Aldaron Laird is a recognized expert on Sea Level Rise and its affects on coastal California and, particularly, on Humboldt/Arcata Bay. Here is a synopsis of a small part of his knowledge, as presented by Fred Weis at the January 10, 2023 Planning Commission meeting.

Emerging Groundwater Report from the SF Bay Area

A 67-page report prepared in 2022 for Alameda, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo Counties. "Low-lying inland areas could flood from below by emergent groundwater long before coastal floodwaters overtop the shoreline.... Rising groundwater can destabilize foundations... Contaminated Sites:  The interaction of rising groundwater and contaminated sites could pose challenges for public health and the environment. ... The areas most at risk of liquefaction are generally located ... in former floodplains, wetlands, mudflats ... that were filled for development.

Arcata Fire District presentation to the Planning Commission – January 10th, 2023

Arcata Fire District Board Director Eric Loudenslager spoke at the Planning Commission meeting of January 10, 2023. Includes discussions of costs, staffing requirements, and potential response times involved for providing adequate fire and emergency protection in the Gateway area and throughout Arcata.

Arcata Fire District Director: Eric Loudenslager – August 4, 2022

Eric Loudenslager, Board of Directors member of the Arcata Fire Protection District, weighs in on some of the challenges of the Gateway Plan, and some requests for information and involvement.

Cal Poly ignores Arcata Fire District response to the Draft EIR

The construction of a new dormitory at the site of the old Craftsman's Mall is of great concern to the Arcata Fire District. In summary, the proposed dorms will be two seven story buildings, and the Arcata Fire District has stated that they cannot provide adequate fire protection these structures.

Arcata Fire contemplates Cal Poly Humboldt and Arcata’s tall plans

An article from the Northcoast Journal from September 2022 concerning how the Arcata Fire District is not set up to provide fire and emergency protection in the taller buildings. ----- The proposed dorms are is not larger than the existing BSS building, but this does not mean that the dorms are safe. The AFD maintains that in the current staffing situation, neither the BSS building nor the dorms would be safe.  -------To say that it "will built to the highest degree of fire safety standards, including full concrete and steel structures with a full sprinkler system" doesn't help either. Fatalities come from smoke inhalation. In a regular living environment there is plenty that will smolder and burn: Carpet, bedding, clothing, books, furniture, etc. The firefighters aren't concerned with trying to save the building. They are concerned with trying to save lives.

Arcata Fire District Board Meeting – December 13th, 2022

A section of the Arcata Fire District Board Meeting of December 13th, 2022 regarding the costs, staffing requirements, and potential response times involved for providing adequate fire and emergency protection in the Gateway area.

Steve Salzman: Let’s answer the basic questions first

Arcata resident, retired professional engineer, and former Greenway Partners partner Steve Salzman asked some basic questions in March, 2022.  What happened to the public input element of Planwest's Scope of Work? Why are we working on an Area Plan before updating the General Plan? How much additional wastewater treatment capacity will be required, how much will it cost and how will it be paid for? Sea Level Rise:  Update the Local Coastal Plan based on the most recent and relevant scientific studies and planning efforts.

Sea Level Rise – the basics

Sea Level Rise could affect plans for the Gateway area. See maps here of what Sea Level Rise looks like.

The L-K Street Couplet — An Engineer’s View

The joint City Council / Planning Commission study session introduced big problems when an elated City Council considered the Transportation Safety Committee's strong recommendation for an L Street Pathway and Linear Park and tossed it out the window -- well, sent it back to the TransSafetyComm for them to review. This presentation was the cause. Is it filled with misleading and possibly false information? Read it, and you decide.

The Five Biggest Myths of the Gateway Plan

It’s fun to talk about dreams. The Gateway Plan has lots of goals. It’s aspirational. But I’m a pragmatist. I want to talk about dreams that can really happen. Arcata needs housing. We know that. Maybe the Gateway Plan could provide an answer.