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    Guest Opinion

    Pine Ave. Pioneer John Morris On What's Needed In Closing Pine Ave. To Cruisers

    (July 29, 2006) -- Pine Ave. pioneer John Morris, proprietor of Smooths, creator of Mums, is not mum on what's necessary in connection with closing Pine Ave. to cruisers.

    As previously reported by, an item on ending cruising along Pine Ave. has been agendized for the August 1 Council meeting by 2d district Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal and Vice Mayor/1st dist. Councilwoman Bonnie Lowenthal.

    Mr. Morris, known for speaking his mind, shared with us his email reply to a mass emailing by Downtown LB Associates President/CEO Kraig which Mr. Kojian invited ideas as to what components should be part of a proposed closure of Pine between Broadway and 3rd Street on Friday and Saturday nights.

    [As agendized, the Council item proposes closing Pine Ave. to cruising between Ocean Blvd. and 7th Street and doesn't mention specific days of the week; these and other specifics can be refined by Councilmembers in directing preparation of an ordinance.]

    We post Mr. Morris' salient opinions below:

    The only way we should close the street between Broadway and Third, which originally stemmed from stakeholders meetings of one year ago, is to make sure we have a plan that encompasses all concerns of stakeholders.

    My vision would be live music, street entertainers, Kiosks (not reinventing wheel here; check out Fashion Island).

    We could use the venue to try to entice retailers, utilizing 3rd and Pine stores on Friday and Saturday nights, maybe a little creative here but worth looking into.

    Retail recruitment money could be used for this. We need lead time to promo before implementing.

    Everything needs to be in place before any closure. Labor day weekend could be good starting point. We have to impress.

    At 10 p.m. the block becomes an entertainment zone for 21 and over. Major concern for residents is exits from structures onto Pine late at night, force out onto 6th and LB Blvd, close exits from City Place onto Pine. This should be a priority.

    I also would like to say: everyone needs to be embracing our Diversity...

    Love to hear feedback...

    Redevelopment should participate in this program financially. They have an obligation to this community to finish what was started many years ago. Granted we have detoured along the way, as all the reidential is completed.

    Pine Ave once again will change with it. The Stakeholder panel needs to be put in place. They will make recomendations to City regarding issues, if any, surrounding our neighborhood.

    ...The police do an awesome job.

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