Amid reports of congestion, coastal problems and insufficient sewage capacity, the Santa Monica Planning Commission approves the "massive" Water Garden office project. This is based upon the developer's agreement to spend money on traffic management and other "mitigation measures." ( Mitigation measures is a catch-all designed to get a development built in spite of local protest. It's like allowing a thief into your home on the promise that he won't take too much.)
Every moment, the city and developers are cramming everything they can get into every space available. Huge buildings pop up constantly along Olympic Boulevard, where few community groups have any power. And where there is community action, citizens are constantly thwarted by loopholes, carelessness and city decisions that begin to seem very deliberate. And we, it seems, are the only ones concerned with consequences.
We watch buffer zones worn away, communities pressured to allow residential property to be rezoned into commercial, politicians promising control but taking it away at every opportunity, and neighbors forced into a door-to-door struggle to maintain the integrity of their communities. And "mitigation measures" are supposed to protect us. We have found the result only less of a bad thing. It seems that those with money and political power are willing to beat us senseless in order to improve our lives!