As a representative of Pasadena Gateway, LLC, the developer of the proposed mixed use, residential and retail project at 3200 East Foothill Boulevard Pasadena (commonly known as Space Bank), I am writing to address some of the claims and assertions about the project made in recent letters published in Pasadena Now.
Pasadena residents should know that challenges to the clean-up plan – including the allegations raised by the letter writers – were already brought via lawsuit before a Superior Court of the State of California judge who has expertise in environmental matters. After weighing the allegations and reviewing the substance and specifics of our approved clean-up plan, the Court ruled that the case filed by Stop Toxic Housing in Pasadena (STHIP) had absolutely no merit, neither factually nor legally. The chief critic leading the campaign against the project admitted under oath during the litigation that she holds no licenses, no certificates nor any registrations in either the field of risk assessment or toxicology and has never directly overseen the environmental cleanup of a property. STHIP’s allegations have been refuted by top scientists of CalEPA’s Department of Toxic Substances Control, and many highly qualified third party accredited Environmental scientists including the City’s own Environmental consultant. Every allegation the critics of the project have made, and are continuing to make, were ruled inaccurate by the Court. STHIP appealed the ruling. The Project and our clean-up plan are now before the California Court of Appeal. The Court is the proper venue for determining the fate of the Project and the thoroughness and efficacy of the clean-up plan. Rather than accept the anticipated ruling of the Courts in our favor, STHIP and their supporters appear to be engaged in a public campaign of misinformation.
The facts are that our proposed project will result in 550 new residential units including 69 much-needed affordable housing units to help Pasadena meet its State Housing guideline obligations. The project includes neighborhood appropriate street-front retail uses. It is 250 yards from a Metro Gold Line station. It is exactly the type of project that the State and local leadership promote as smart transit-oriented development. The project will deliver over $19 Million Dollars of fees to the City for neighborhood parks, schools, traffic reduction, public art, maintenance, sanitation, and other City services.
When the City Council approved the project in 2018, it required that we obtain approval by the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (“DTSC”) for the full and complete clean-up of the Property for residential use, which is the highest standard of clean-up in the State of California. During the process, the City hired its own expert, Alta Environmental, a highly respected licensed Certified Industrial Hygienist which layered on top of the DTSC clean-up plan numerous changes and conditions before it was approved by the State and the City. It is the thoroughness of this clean-up plan, written by licensed environmental experts, which is why the State signed-off, the City signed-off, and the Courts upheld that this is the right clean-up plan for the property and the proposed use.
We would like to thank everyone for your continued support of the Project. Many of you have been waiting patiently for years, as we have. We look forward to starting work following the ruling of the Court of Appeals.
Got something to say, email Managing Editor André Coleman, at andrec@pasadenanowmagazine.