Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Quote of the Week 

Love doesn’t make the world go round.  Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

– Franklin Jones

City Works to Find Balanced Solutions as We Prepare for a Housing Development Renaissance

Here in Southern California, we are faced with the daunting reality that things are about to get a lot more crowded.  Based on the latest demographic projections available, in the next 25-year planning period, the SCAG region (which includes LA County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County, and Imperial County) will, through natural growth patterns unrelated to immigration, add the equivalent population of the states of Oregon and Washington… combined!

That’s around 11 million more people in the greater Southern California region!

Against that backdrop, California is in the midst of a true housing crisis.  An oft-cited report published by McKinsey Global Institute illustrated the depths of the housing crunch here in the Golden State, where real estate prices are rising 3x faster than household income… where 50% of the State’s population cannot afford housing… where California needs to build 3.5 million more homes by 2025 to truly stabilize the housing situation.

And here in Monrovia, we’re impacted by these broader housing trends facing the State.  Because did you know that in our City, the average rent for an apartment these days is around $3 / square foot.

$3 / square foot… which means that a 1,000 square foot apartment will cost you $3,000 per month in rent.

That’s just not okay.

While there are many different proposed solutions to the housing issues we’re faced with today, there is only one for which there is near universal agreement… that if we are to stabilize housing costs in California, we need a massive increase in the supply of available housing.

For us here in Monrovia, we have been planning for this increase in housing during the past 20+ years.  Our initial ideas were developed through a 2004 Urban Land Institute Study commissioned by the City.  Those concepts were then codified in a 2008 General Plan Update that created areas of focused housing density in the edges surrounding Old Town, at Station Square, and on the west end of Huntington Drive.  Finally, in 2014, the City adopted the Station Square Transit Village Planned Development Area to allow for greater housing densities around our Gold Line Station.

And now, during the next several months, all of those plans will be coming to life as Monrovia is set to consider several large residential development projects that truly do reflect our community’s long term plans and vision for the City.  All told, there are currently around 2,200 housing units / rooms in the development pipeline, which constitutes a 15% increase in our total housing supply.  The map below outlines the location of these proposed development projects in the City.

 

Now in the next few months (from June 2018 – September 2018), the City will be considering three major projects that will feature close to 600 units / hotel rooms (highlighted in blue in the map above – Richman Development, Marriott TownePlace Suites, and AvalonBay).  Certainly, without proper context, these eye-popping numbers can be somewhat startling, and may elicit a strong initial reaction.  Because when dealing with policies related to growth, housing, and development, the issues often times end up pitting two sides against one another. 
 
On the one extreme, there are those who advocate for no-growth… that is, until we have more water, clean air, and no traffic, we should not allow any development whatsoever.  And on the other extreme, you have those who advocate for a pure free-market approach… that government should allow developers to build whatever they want, so long as the market will allow for it.
 
Here in our community, what we’ve been working on for the past 20+ years is to find a better way… a more balanced way… a true Monrovia way… in order to solve the pressing challenges facing our City.  And in an effort to offset the impacts associated with new development, the City has instituted several new policies and programs to mitigate growth issues that could erode the quality of life in our community.

  • First, on the environmental front… the City recently adopted a New Development Water Rate, which will require that any new project adding 5 or more units to the City pay the full cost of importing water from outside the region for their use.  This New Development Water Rate means that any new development projects will have to pay an effective water rate that is 34.4% more expensive than the normal water rate that current Monrovians are charged.  This policy enhancement will ensure that our existing residents and businesses are not forced to bear the added cost of importing more water into the City to serve a new population base.
  • Next, on the service delivery front… the City has adopted a policy that will allow us to create Mello-Roos Districts that overlay on significant new development projects.  Through this policy, all significant new developments will be required to pay an extra property tax assessment annually to offset the increased costs for police and fire services that are necessitated when major projects are constructed.
  • And finally, on the traffic front… the City recently instituted a new model of suburban mobility that provides Monrovians with simple, easy, and cheap public transportation options to combat increasing traffic and parking congestion trends.  The program we developed, which is called GoMonrovia, provides enhanced public transportation options provided through Lyft and LimeBike.  Under the GoMonrovia initiative, individuals have access to $0.50 Lyft rides anywhere in our service area.  In addition, the partnership developed with LimeBike has resulted in the deployment of dockless, shareable bikes located throughout town that can be accessed for $1.00 for a 30-minute ride.

 

During the next several months, as Monrovia contemplates the significant development projects that have been proposed here in our community, we do hope that you stay informed and stay involved with the issues at hand.  All of us here at the City have been working hard to try and find balanced solutions to the most important issues of our day.  Because while we do have to make sure that we have strong environmental policies, and while we need to develop premier mobility / transportation options for our residents… we also have to find a way to do our part to address the severe housing crisis we are confronted with today.  I know that by engaging in honest dialogue and working hard together… we can take the steps forwarded today that are needed to ensure that Monrovia has an even better future tomorrow.

City Establishes a New Web Page for Those Interested in Learning More About Significant Development Projects in Monrovia!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website.
 
This site will become the web portal for all documents related to each of the projects being considered, and information will be uploaded as it becomes available.  In addition, each project will have its own page with links to all the environmental and entitlement documents for public review. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Quote of the Week 

Love doesn’t make the world go round.  Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

– Franklin Jones

City Works to Find Balanced Solutions as We Prepare for a Housing Development Renaissance

Here in Southern California, we are faced with the daunting reality that things are about to get a lot more crowded.  Based on the latest demographic projections available, in the next 25-year planning period, the SCAG region (which includes LA County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County, and Imperial County) will, through natural growth patterns unrelated to immigration, add the equivalent population of the states of Oregon and Washington… combined!

That’s around 11 million more people in the greater Southern California region!

Against that backdrop, California is in the midst of a true housing crisis.  An oft-cited report published by McKinsey Global Institute illustrated the depths of the housing crunch here in the Golden State, where real estate prices are rising 3x faster than household income… where 50% of the State’s population cannot afford housing… where California needs to build 3.5 million more homes by 2025 to truly stabilize the housing situation.

And here in Monrovia, we’re impacted by these broader housing trends facing the State.  Because did you know that in our City, the average rent for an apartment these days is around $3 / square foot.

$3 / square foot… which means that a 1,000 square foot apartment will cost you $3,000 per month in rent.

That’s just not okay.

While there are many different proposed solutions to the housing issues we’re faced with today, there is only one for which there is near universal agreement… that if we are to stabilize housing costs in California, we need a massive increase in the supply of available housing.

For us here in Monrovia, we have been planning for this increase in housing during the past 20+ years.  Our initial ideas were developed through a 2004 Urban Land Institute Study commissioned by the City.  Those concepts were then codified in a 2008 General Plan Update that created areas of focused housing density in the edges surrounding Old Town, at Station Square, and on the west end of Huntington Drive.  Finally, in 2014, the City adopted the Station Square Transit Village Planned Development Area to allow for greater housing densities around our Gold Line Station.

And now, during the next several months, all of those plans will be coming to life as Monrovia is set to consider several large residential development projects that truly do reflect our community’s long term plans and vision for the City.  All told, there are currently around 2,200 housing units / rooms in the development pipeline, which constitutes a 15% increase in our total housing supply.  The map below outlines the location of these proposed development projects in the City.

 

Now in the next few months (from June 2018 – September 2018), the City will be considering three major projects that will feature close to 600 units / hotel rooms (highlighted in blue in the map above – Richman Development, Marriott TownePlace Suites, and AvalonBay).  Certainly, without proper context, these eye-popping numbers can be somewhat startling, and may elicit a strong initial reaction.  Because when dealing with policies related to growth, housing, and development, the issues often times end up pitting two sides against one another. 
 
On the one extreme, there are those who advocate for no-growth… that is, until we have more water, clean air, and no traffic, we should not allow any development whatsoever.  And on the other extreme, you have those who advocate for a pure free-market approach… that government should allow developers to build whatever they want, so long as the market will allow for it.
 
Here in our community, what we’ve been working on for the past 20+ years is to find a better way… a more balanced way… a true Monrovia way… in order to solve the pressing challenges facing our City.  And in an effort to offset the impacts associated with new development, the City has instituted several new policies and programs to mitigate growth issues that could erode the quality of life in our community.

  • First, on the environmental front… the City recently adopted a New Development Water Rate, which will require that any new project adding 5 or more units to the City pay the full cost of importing water from outside the region for their use.  This New Development Water Rate means that any new development projects will have to pay an effective water rate that is 34.4% more expensive than the normal water rate that current Monrovians are charged.  This policy enhancement will ensure that our existing residents and businesses are not forced to bear the added cost of importing more water into the City to serve a new population base.
  • Next, on the service delivery front… the City has adopted a policy that will allow us to create Mello-Roos Districts that overlay on significant new development projects.  Through this policy, all significant new developments will be required to pay an extra property tax assessment annually to offset the increased costs for police and fire services that are necessitated when major projects are constructed.
  • And finally, on the traffic front… the City recently instituted a new model of suburban mobility that provides Monrovians with simple, easy, and cheap public transportation options to combat increasing traffic and parking congestion trends.  The program we developed, which is called GoMonrovia, provides enhanced public transportation options provided through Lyft and LimeBike.  Under the GoMonrovia initiative, individuals have access to $0.50 Lyft rides anywhere in our service area.  In addition, the partnership developed with LimeBike has resulted in the deployment of dockless, shareable bikes located throughout town that can be accessed for $1.00 for a 30-minute ride.

 

During the next several months, as Monrovia contemplates the significant development projects that have been proposed here in our community, we do hope that you stay informed and stay involved with the issues at hand.  All of us here at the City have been working hard to try and find balanced solutions to the most important issues of our day.  Because while we do have to make sure that we have strong environmental policies, and while we need to develop premier mobility / transportation options for our residents… we also have to find a way to do our part to address the severe housing crisis we are confronted with today.  I know that by engaging in honest dialogue and working hard together… we can take the steps forwarded today that are needed to ensure that Monrovia has an even better future tomorrow.

City Establishes a New Web Page for Those Interested in Learning More About Significant Development Projects in Monrovia!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website.
 
This site will become the web portal for all documents related to each of the projects being considered, and information will be uploaded as it becomes available.  In addition, each project will have its own page with links to all the environmental and entitlement documents for public review. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Quote of the Week 

Love doesn’t make the world go round.  Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

– Franklin Jones

City Works to Find Balanced Solutions as We Prepare for a Housing Development Renaissance

Here in Southern California, we are faced with the daunting reality that things are about to get a lot more crowded.  Based on the latest demographic projections available, in the next 25-year planning period, the SCAG region (which includes LA County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County, and Imperial County) will, through natural growth patterns unrelated to immigration, add the equivalent population of the states of Oregon and Washington… combined!

That’s around 11 million more people in the greater Southern California region!

Against that backdrop, California is in the midst of a true housing crisis.  An oft-cited report published by McKinsey Global Institute illustrated the depths of the housing crunch here in the Golden State, where real estate prices are rising 3x faster than household income… where 50% of the State’s population cannot afford housing… where California needs to build 3.5 million more homes by 2025 to truly stabilize the housing situation.

And here in Monrovia, we’re impacted by these broader housing trends facing the State.  Because did you know that in our City, the average rent for an apartment these days is around $3 / square foot.

$3 / square foot… which means that a 1,000 square foot apartment will cost you $3,000 per month in rent.

That’s just not okay.

While there are many different proposed solutions to the housing issues we’re faced with today, there is only one for which there is near universal agreement… that if we are to stabilize housing costs in California, we need a massive increase in the supply of available housing.

For us here in Monrovia, we have been planning for this increase in housing during the past 20+ years.  Our initial ideas were developed through a 2004 Urban Land Institute Study commissioned by the City.  Those concepts were then codified in a 2008 General Plan Update that created areas of focused housing density in the edges surrounding Old Town, at Station Square, and on the west end of Huntington Drive.  Finally, in 2014, the City adopted the Station Square Transit Village Planned Development Area to allow for greater housing densities around our Gold Line Station.

And now, during the next several months, all of those plans will be coming to life as Monrovia is set to consider several large residential development projects that truly do reflect our community’s long term plans and vision for the City.  All told, there are currently around 2,200 housing units / rooms in the development pipeline, which constitutes a 15% increase in our total housing supply.  The map below outlines the location of these proposed development projects in the City.

 

Now in the next few months (from June 2018 – September 2018), the City will be considering three major projects that will feature close to 600 units / hotel rooms (highlighted in blue in the map above – Richman Development, Marriott TownePlace Suites, and AvalonBay).  Certainly, without proper context, these eye-popping numbers can be somewhat startling, and may elicit a strong initial reaction.  Because when dealing with policies related to growth, housing, and development, the issues often times end up pitting two sides against one another. 
 
On the one extreme, there are those who advocate for no-growth… that is, until we have more water, clean air, and no traffic, we should not allow any development whatsoever.  And on the other extreme, you have those who advocate for a pure free-market approach… that government should allow developers to build whatever they want, so long as the market will allow for it.
 
Here in our community, what we’ve been working on for the past 20+ years is to find a better way… a more balanced way… a true Monrovia way… in order to solve the pressing challenges facing our City.  And in an effort to offset the impacts associated with new development, the City has instituted several new policies and programs to mitigate growth issues that could erode the quality of life in our community.

  • First, on the environmental front… the City recently adopted a New Development Water Rate, which will require that any new project adding 5 or more units to the City pay the full cost of importing water from outside the region for their use.  This New Development Water Rate means that any new development projects will have to pay an effective water rate that is 34.4% more expensive than the normal water rate that current Monrovians are charged.  This policy enhancement will ensure that our existing residents and businesses are not forced to bear the added cost of importing more water into the City to serve a new population base.
  • Next, on the service delivery front… the City has adopted a policy that will allow us to create Mello-Roos Districts that overlay on significant new development projects.  Through this policy, all significant new developments will be required to pay an extra property tax assessment annually to offset the increased costs for police and fire services that are necessitated when major projects are constructed.
  • And finally, on the traffic front… the City recently instituted a new model of suburban mobility that provides Monrovians with simple, easy, and cheap public transportation options to combat increasing traffic and parking congestion trends.  The program we developed, which is called GoMonrovia, provides enhanced public transportation options provided through Lyft and LimeBike.  Under the GoMonrovia initiative, individuals have access to $0.50 Lyft rides anywhere in our service area.  In addition, the partnership developed with LimeBike has resulted in the deployment of dockless, shareable bikes located throughout town that can be accessed for $1.00 for a 30-minute ride.

 

During the next several months, as Monrovia contemplates the significant development projects that have been proposed here in our community, we do hope that you stay informed and stay involved with the issues at hand.  All of us here at the City have been working hard to try and find balanced solutions to the most important issues of our day.  Because while we do have to make sure that we have strong environmental policies, and while we need to develop premier mobility / transportation options for our residents… we also have to find a way to do our part to address the severe housing crisis we are confronted with today.  I know that by engaging in honest dialogue and working hard together… we can take the steps forwarded today that are needed to ensure that Monrovia has an even better future tomorrow.

City Establishes a New Web Page for Those Interested in Learning More About Significant Development Projects in Monrovia!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website.
 
This site will become the web portal for all documents related to each of the projects being considered, and information will be uploaded as it becomes available.  In addition, each project will have its own page with links to all the environmental and entitlement documents for public review. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Quote of the Week 

Love doesn’t make the world go round.  Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

– Franklin Jones

City Works to Find Balanced Solutions as We Prepare for a Housing Development Renaissance

Here in Southern California, we are faced with the daunting reality that things are about to get a lot more crowded.  Based on the latest demographic projections available, in the next 25-year planning period, the SCAG region (which includes LA County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County, and Imperial County) will, through natural growth patterns unrelated to immigration, add the equivalent population of the states of Oregon and Washington… combined!

That’s around 11 million more people in the greater Southern California region!

Against that backdrop, California is in the midst of a true housing crisis.  An oft-cited report published by McKinsey Global Institute illustrated the depths of the housing crunch here in the Golden State, where real estate prices are rising 3x faster than household income… where 50% of the State’s population cannot afford housing… where California needs to build 3.5 million more homes by 2025 to truly stabilize the housing situation.

And here in Monrovia, we’re impacted by these broader housing trends facing the State.  Because did you know that in our City, the average rent for an apartment these days is around $3 / square foot.

$3 / square foot… which means that a 1,000 square foot apartment will cost you $3,000 per month in rent.

That’s just not okay.

While there are many different proposed solutions to the housing issues we’re faced with today, there is only one for which there is near universal agreement… that if we are to stabilize housing costs in California, we need a massive increase in the supply of available housing.

For us here in Monrovia, we have been planning for this increase in housing during the past 20+ years.  Our initial ideas were developed through a 2004 Urban Land Institute Study commissioned by the City.  Those concepts were then codified in a 2008 General Plan Update that created areas of focused housing density in the edges surrounding Old Town, at Station Square, and on the west end of Huntington Drive.  Finally, in 2014, the City adopted the Station Square Transit Village Planned Development Area to allow for greater housing densities around our Gold Line Station.

And now, during the next several months, all of those plans will be coming to life as Monrovia is set to consider several large residential development projects that truly do reflect our community’s long term plans and vision for the City.  All told, there are currently around 2,200 housing units / rooms in the development pipeline, which constitutes a 15% increase in our total housing supply.  The map below outlines the location of these proposed development projects in the City.

 

Now in the next few months (from June 2018 – September 2018), the City will be considering three major projects that will feature close to 600 units / hotel rooms (highlighted in blue in the map above – Richman Development, Marriott TownePlace Suites, and AvalonBay).  Certainly, without proper context, these eye-popping numbers can be somewhat startling, and may elicit a strong initial reaction.  Because when dealing with policies related to growth, housing, and development, the issues often times end up pitting two sides against one another. 
 
On the one extreme, there are those who advocate for no-growth… that is, until we have more water, clean air, and no traffic, we should not allow any development whatsoever.  And on the other extreme, you have those who advocate for a pure free-market approach… that government should allow developers to build whatever they want, so long as the market will allow for it.
 
Here in our community, what we’ve been working on for the past 20+ years is to find a better way… a more balanced way… a true Monrovia way… in order to solve the pressing challenges facing our City.  And in an effort to offset the impacts associated with new development, the City has instituted several new policies and programs to mitigate growth issues that could erode the quality of life in our community.

  • First, on the environmental front… the City recently adopted a New Development Water Rate, which will require that any new project adding 5 or more units to the City pay the full cost of importing water from outside the region for their use.  This New Development Water Rate means that any new development projects will have to pay an effective water rate that is 34.4% more expensive than the normal water rate that current Monrovians are charged.  This policy enhancement will ensure that our existing residents and businesses are not forced to bear the added cost of importing more water into the City to serve a new population base.
  • Next, on the service delivery front… the City has adopted a policy that will allow us to create Mello-Roos Districts that overlay on significant new development projects.  Through this policy, all significant new developments will be required to pay an extra property tax assessment annually to offset the increased costs for police and fire services that are necessitated when major projects are constructed.
  • And finally, on the traffic front… the City recently instituted a new model of suburban mobility that provides Monrovians with simple, easy, and cheap public transportation options to combat increasing traffic and parking congestion trends.  The program we developed, which is called GoMonrovia, provides enhanced public transportation options provided through Lyft and LimeBike.  Under the GoMonrovia initiative, individuals have access to $0.50 Lyft rides anywhere in our service area.  In addition, the partnership developed with LimeBike has resulted in the deployment of dockless, shareable bikes located throughout town that can be accessed for $1.00 for a 30-minute ride.

 

During the next several months, as Monrovia contemplates the significant development projects that have been proposed here in our community, we do hope that you stay informed and stay involved with the issues at hand.  All of us here at the City have been working hard to try and find balanced solutions to the most important issues of our day.  Because while we do have to make sure that we have strong environmental policies, and while we need to develop premier mobility / transportation options for our residents… we also have to find a way to do our part to address the severe housing crisis we are confronted with today.  I know that by engaging in honest dialogue and working hard together… we can take the steps forwarded today that are needed to ensure that Monrovia has an even better future tomorrow.

City Establishes a New Web Page for Those Interested in Learning More About Significant Development Projects in Monrovia!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website.
 
This site will become the web portal for all documents related to each of the projects being considered, and information will be uploaded as it becomes available.  In addition, each project will have its own page with links to all the environmental and entitlement documents for public review. 


Quote of the Week

I knew the second I met you that there was something about you I needed.  Turns out it wasn’t something about you at all.  It was just you.

– Jamie McGuire


Remembering Cynthia Keen

I wanted to share some sad news with the community.  We learned recently that Cynthia Keen, Chuck Keen’s wife, passed away last week on August 8, 2018.  As you may know, Chuck and Cynthia both served our country, and have been engaged and involved in local Monrovia civic affairs for a number of years.  In particular, the Keen’s have spent countless hours serving, honoring, and recognizing our Veterans.

Cynthia had been ill for some time, and it is our most sincere hope that the entire Keen family finds a modicum of peace with her passing.  Funeral services will be held this coming Thursday, August 16, 2018, at Turner & Stevens Live Oak Chapel (200 E. Duarte Road, Monrovia), at 11:00 a.m.  On behalf of the entire City, our most earnest and heartfelt condolences to the entire Keen family during this difficult time.


GoMonrovia $0.50 Fare Moving To Shared Ride Option, $3.00 / Ride For Non-Shared, Standard Lyft Ride - Changes To Take Effect September 1, 2018

On August 7, 2018, the City Council approved modifications to the GoMonrovia pilot program in response to the unprecedented popularity of the overall initiative.  The changes that were approved, while modest, will help to reduce the costs associated with running the program.  Additional details related to the coming adjustments are outlined below.

Starting September 1, 2018, Shared Lyft rides will cost $0.50 / ride using the “GOMONROVIA” promo code

  • If you previously applied the GOMONROVIA promo code to your Lyft account, all you will need to do is select the “Shared Ride” option to continue receiving your $0.50 fare / ride.

  • So what is a “Shared Ride”?

  • A Shared Ride means that the Lyft driver may accept another passenger who is going in the same direction as you are with a nearby pick-up or drop-off location.
  • Lyft’s algorithms may “match” you with another passenger based on where you are traveling.
  • During the ride, the driver may pick up another person, or they may not, depending on the situation.  If they do pick up another rider, it could mean having to make one additional stop before getting to your destination.  If no one is picked up, you will be able to complete your ride without any interruptions.
  • A Shared Ride means that you can have 1-2 people traveling in your party, and that they may pick up 1-2 other passengers in a second party.
  • Starting September 1, 2018, a Standard Lyft ride will cost $3.00 / ride.
    • The Standard Lyft ride is the type of ride that the GoMonrovia program has been using so far, where you and up to three other passengers may be picked up for a ride.
    • Our partners at Lyft have made it easier by adding this non-shared $3.00 option to the main GoMonrovia promo code, so there will be no need to enter another promo code. 

Staff will continue to conduct extensive community outreach throughout the month of August to prepare for the changes taking effect on September 1.  Thank you for your patience as we work through adjusting the GoMonrovia program to ensure we can continue to offer this wonderful service to the community! 


Planning Commision Set To Consider The Proposed Marriott Towneplace Suites Project And Avalonbay Multi-Family Initiative On August 15, 2018

On July 18, 2018, the Development Review Committee considered entitlement applications for the Marriott TownePlace Suites hotel project (located at the SW intersection of Myrtle / Huntington) and the Avalon Bay multi-family project (located at the NW corner of Myrtle / Chestnut).  During the public hearing, there was no opposition to either initiatives, and after a thorough review, both items were approved unanimously.

Given that determination, both initiatives will now be considered by the Planning Commission on August 15, 2018, at 7:30 p.m.  In addition, an overview of each project is outlined below.

Marriott TownePlace Suites

Tharaldson Investments is proposing the development of a 109-room, five-story, TownePlace Suites Hotel by Marriott at the southeast corner of West Huntington Drive and South Myrtle Avenue.  The hotel will provide a mix of three major room types, consisting of one-bedroom, double-queen, and king studios, as well as several hotel amenities, including an indoor exercise room, a breakfast room, a community table / lounge area, as well as an outdoor swimming pool and an outdoor seating area.  The Project would include an on-site surface parking lot with 109 spaces that would serve the guests, visitors, and employees at the TownePlace Suites.  Additional information about the Marriott TownePlace Suites project can be found online.

Marriott TownePlace Suites

AvalonBay Project

The Avalon Monrovia Specific Plan and Mixed-Use Development is a mixed-use development composed of a single building containing 154 apartment residential units, 3,500 square feet of ground-floor retail, and a five-story, six-level 286-space parking garage on a 2.1-acre site. Thirteen of the dwelling units will be reserved for lower-income residents.  Additional information about the AvalonBay project can be found online.

Avalon Bay


Keep Up-To-Date On The City’s Upcoming Housing Projects By Visiting Our Development Spotlight Website!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website. This page gathers all of the major projects in one place for you to explore and see what’s in the pipeline. The City Council recently approved the 296-unit Richman Residential Project, and the City is currently coordinating entitlement hearings for two additional significant projects: The 109-room Marriott TownePlace Suites Hotel Project on the SW corner of Myrtle Avenue / Huntington Drive, and the 154-unit AvalonBay Project on the NW corner of Myrtle Avenue / Chestnut Avenue.  An overview of where each of these projects is in the entitlement process is included below for your reference:

So if you have any questions regarding the development activity happening in the City, please be sure to visit the “Development Spotlight” page on our website!  In addition, more detailed information related to each of the three projects outlined above can be found online at:


 

Monrovia Reads Van Will Be Going Back To School On August 20!

Last week the Monrovia Reads Van visited the Foothill Unity Center’s Back to School Event at the Santa Anita Racetrack.  This amazing project brings much needed school supplies and services to needy families in the area. It was an amazing day and Monrovia Public Library was thrilled to participate with the Monrovia Reads Van!

That event got us super excited for the start of school, and we wanted to share details regarding the start of the new school year!  The Monrovia Reads Van will be visiting each of the five elementary schools in our community after school to share library resources & activities, check out books, and create library cards on the spot… and for additional details, check out our schedule on the flyer!  If you have any questions, please call the library at (626) 256-8274 or drop by and we will be happy to tell you more about this wonderful program!

 


 

This Year’s National Night Out Was A Huge Success!

Last Tuesday night, approximately 250 community members gathered under the oak tree in Library Park to meet the men and women of the Monrovia Police Department at the annual National Night Out!  National Night Out strives to enhance the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community.  Not only was the event’s goal to help residents see the faces behind the badge, but it also gave all the chance to learn more about the tools and methods used to help ensure the city’s safety. Throughout the evening, community members had the opportunity to sit in squad cars, explore the BearCat, explore all areas of the department such as CAP, Patrol, and Communications, and ask officers questions, all while eating delicious food!  We were also joined by staff from LA County Department of Mental Health, LA Housing Services Authority, and other City departments.

This is one of the Police Department’s biggest community outreach events designed to expand the trust our community has, not only for the police department, but for all of us, and it couldn’t have happened without everyone working together.  Special thanks to Athens Services for providing hot dogs for everyone, to everyone who hosted informational booths and donated raffle prizes, and of course, all the community members who joined us for the evening!

NNO_2

 


 

It Was Standing Room Only At The City’s Coexisting With Wildlife Workshop, Hosted In Partnership With The Pasadena Humane Society

This past week, on August 8, 2018, the City, the Pasadena Humane Society, and a room filled with Monrovia residents gathered together in the Library Community Room to discuss how we can all better coexist with wildlife.  The informative workshop was conducted by the terrific team over at the Pasadena Humane Society, and the discussion highlighted how the unique hillsides of Monrovia creates natural interfaces between residents and wildlife, including bears.  As the pictures below illustrate, the event drew a large and enthusiastic crowd of resident interested in learning more.  For additional information about this topic, view the presentation online, call (626) 256-8226, or visit the City’s Website and the Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA website.

PHS Meeting_1

 


 

Public Works Staff Working To Replace Hardware And Flags At City Hall, Repairs Should Be Completed The Week Of August 21

As you might have recently noticed, the flags on the pole in front of City Hall have been missing as the support rope and related hardware failed over the last week.  In fact, it was a Monrovia resident who actually retrieved the fallen flags, folded them appropriately, and delivered them to the Police Department.  Staff is currently working with a flag company to source new hardware and materials to replace the rope and pulley system, and all related clips, while also procuring new flags.  The installation of the replacement hardware and the new flags is scheduled to take place during the week of August 21, and we will be certain to keep everyone informed of our progress moving ahead.

 


 

Pasadena Humane Society Set To Host A Low-Cost Pet Wellness Clinic On August 30, 2018, At Foothill Unity Center

Just a quick note to let everyone know that our partners at the Pasadena Humane Society will be offering a low-cost animal wellness clinic on August 30, 2018, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., at the Foothill Unity Center (790 West Chestnut Avenue, Monrovia).  Additional information regarding the event can be found on the flyer!

 


 

Monrovia Renewal South Section Infrastructure Improvements – Work for Week of August 13

The Monrovia Renewal Improvements in the South section are continuing to make great progress! This work includes a full battery of water, sewer, street, and sidewalk improvements to the areas of Monrovia located south of the 210 Freeway.  Sequel Contractors broke ground on this project in April 2018 and the work will last through the remainder of the year.

Based on our progress to date, the following work is scheduled to take place over the next week:

Removal and Replacement of concrete curb, gutter, sidewalk, and driveway approaches:

  • Genoa Street, Radford Place, Fano Street, South Alta Vista Avenue, S. 10th Avenue

Removal and Replacement of water service lines:

  • S. 5th Avenue, El Dorado Street

Continuation of storm drain improvements:

  • Recreation Park

Below are a couple of photos depicting the concrete and water service line work that was done over the past several weeks:

Asphalt concrete paving over newly installed water services at Monrovista Avenue 

Installation of catch basins at Atara Street

Advance notices will be distributed to residents and business owners in the areas where work will take place. Parking restrictions have been posted in the areas where parking will be impacted, pursuant to the following notification process:

How and when will you be notified? The contracting team will distribute notices on the following schedule, which will vary by the specific work in each location:

  • Initial Notice – All residents and businesses in the construction area to inform them of pending work.
  • Five Day Notice – Specific notices will be delivered to the impacted areas five (5) days prior to work commencing. This notice will outline the work taking place, overview the schedule, and provide information on the associated impacts, such as parking restrictions or driveway access.
  • Two Day Notice – A final notice will be provided two days before the activity begins to remind folks of the coming work and impacts.

As the work in this section progresses, we will be sure to keep you updated on any developments.  As always, we thank you for your patience and understanding while we work to execute this project!  Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact the Public Works Division at (626) 932-5575 or monroviarenewal@ci.monrovia.ca.us.

We look forward to continue making these and other improvements throughout the South section of the Monrovia Renewal Project!


City Responding To Requests From Residents That Were Made During Our Block Party On Ivy Avenue, Including A Review Of Our Current Permit Parking Requirements

As you may recall, on June 30, 2018, the City coordinated a block party on Ivy Avenue to discuss our proposed ACTV Monrovia bike lane project.  At that meeting, in addition to feedback received about our proposed bike lane project, staff also received requests about several other matters, including tree trimming, speeding, and permit parking related issues.  The primary locations for where these issues were raised was in the area bordered to the north by Huntington Drive, the south by I-210 Freeway, the west by Myrtle Avenue, and the east by Shamrock Avenue. 

ACTV Map

Based on those requests, staff has been working during the past month responding to the requests that were made, and an overview of our progress to date includes the following: 

  • Tree Trimming 
    • Based on feedback received by staff, we have coordinated and completed additional tree trimming efforts in the identified areas. 
  • Speeding Issues 
    • To address speeding issues, staff has coordinated a variety of responses, including the following: 
      • Installation of a 4-way stop at Ivy Avenue / Cypress Avenue has been scheduled. 
      • Installation of speed bumps in the north / south alley located between Myrtle Avenue and Ivy Avenue is being coordinated. 
  • Permit Parking 
    • Historically, we have had permit parking requirements in the identified area as one way to address illicit activity.  However, given positive developments in the area that we have experienced during the past 5 – 10 years, residents have requested that we reexamine the need for having permit parking in the residential neighborhood.  To that end, we have been working to assess the feasibility of removing the need for on-street parking permits.  Based on our assessment, staff is comfortable recommending removal of permit parking in the identified area, and we plan on bringing the issue forward for City Council review in September 2018. 

As we have worked with neighbors to implement these changes, we are confident that the improvements made in responding to requests that we received will continue to be received positively. 


MAP Set To Host Block Party On August 18, 2018, 11:00 A.M. – 2:00 P.M., And Unveil The Second Neighborhood Treasure

The Monrovia Area Partnership Block Party has been scheduled for Saturday, August 18, 2018! We hope that you will make plans to join us for a great afternoon of family fun, games, prizes… and the second unveiling of our Neighborhood Treasures! Event details include:

Map Block Party 
Saturday, August 18, 2018 
11:00 am – 2 pm 
500 Block of East Cypress

Our second treasure, Ms. Kate Wright, was an unsung hero who unselfishly cared for low income residents of Monrovia who suffered from Tuberculosis in the early 1900’s. She asked for no payment or assistance, just wanted to heal people who were in need. So stop on by the block party to see the new treasure and to have some fun with your fellow Monrovians.

For more information on the MAP Block Party, please feel free to call (626) 932-5563 or email map@ci.monrovia.ca.us. And to RSVP, please click here.

MAP Block Party Aug 2018


It's Still A Few Years Away... But Everyone Needs To Start Getting Ready For Voting Centers, Which Will Debut With The 2020 Election! 

During the past few months, our Alice Atkins, our very own Certified Municipal City Clerk, has been working to keep tabs on a significant change to the way that we coordinate elections.  And given the magnitude of the change, we wanted to start sharing the news that beginning in 2020, LA County will be implementing Vote Centers to replace traditional polling places.  Rather than coordinate our elections in such a way where everyone votes at a polling center on election day, Vote Centers will allow individuals the ability to submit their ballot at any Vote Center LA County.  In addition, the Vote Centers will be opening up to eleven (11) days in advance of the last day to vote. 

Given this change, beginning in 2020, Monrovia will likely have around 2 Vote Centers, as opposed to the 5 election polling places we typically coordinate during elections.  In addition, LA County has been working to simultaneously implement new voting equipment, which will include a combination of electronic voting mechanisms and a paper ballot.  This new voting technology includes the option to download a sample ballot to a smartphone, vote, and create a QR code that can be scanned at the Vote Center to speed up the voting process.  View a video highlighting these changes.

Of course, during the next year, we will continue to share information with the public about the Vote Center transition as LA County makes more information available. 

 


 

LA County Votes To Place The Safe Clean Water Act On The November 2018 Ballot

This past week, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to place the Safe Clean Water Program on the November 2018 ballot for voter consideration.  The Safe Clean Water Program is a tax measure intended to create a funding source for municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4) in efforts to address both clean water and climate change by improving water quality, while also helping Los Angeles County comply with State and Federal Clean Water Acts.

If approved, the tax measure would institute a 2.5 cents per square foot cost on all impermeable surface area (ex: pavement, concrete, rooftops, etc.) per year.  The proposed tax would cost the typical homeowner around $80 / year, and would raise ~$300 million annually.  The funds raised would be distributed between three programs, including:

  • 40% would be direct pass-through to cities based on local MS4 compliance efforts
  • 50% would be dispersed through a regional grant program, with each application being evaluated on a standardized point system, which the Council worked closely with the County on.
  • 10% would go back to Los Angeles County for program administration.

How would the Safe Clean Water Program impact you?

  • If approved, the estimated average property tax increase per homeowner would be around $80 / year.  To find out how much your property taxes will increase, you can visit LA County's website.
  • Already made stormwater improvements on your property? A credit program to offset additional taxes is being developed and more information will be provided when LA County makes the information available.

For more information, please visit the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works website.


Looking For Something Fun To Do On The Weekends?  Then Do Not Miss Out On All The Fun At Monrovia’s Summer Concert Series!

We are already halfway through the month of July, so do not miss your opportunity to enjoy free summer concerts in the park! Grab your family and friends and head to the park to see one of our upcoming shows! Summer concerts are held on multiple days of the week, starting at 7:00 p.m. and rocking out ‘til 8:30 p.m. Saturday concerts are held at Station Square Amphitheatre and Sunday concerts are held at Library Park. For more details, see the full schedule of remaining concerts below:

Saturday Concerts 

Location: Station Square Amphitheater (1601 South Myrtle Ave., Monrovia, CA 91016)
Time: 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.
Dates / Performances:

  • August 11 – Cold Duck, Motown Soul
  • August 18 – Kellye Huff Band, Country
  • August 25 – Boxcar 7, Jazz

Sunday Concerts
Location: Library Park, Rotary Bandshell (321 South Myrtle Ave., Monrovia, CA 91016)
Time: 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.
Dates / Performances:

  • August 12 – The Nolan Shaheed Quintet, Jazz
  • August 19 – Disney Tribute Band, Children’s Music
  • August 26 – Yachty By Nature, Yacht Rock Band 70s & 80s

If you have any additional questions, please contact the Public Services Department at (626) 256-8246!

Monrovia Summer2018 Flyer


 

Take Precaution Against Mosquitos And West Nile Virus While Out In The Sun This Summer!

With the summer heat and extra time outdoors, we wanted to share some helpful tips and reminders about keeping you and your family safe from exposure to the West Nile Virus. Mosquitos kill and sicken more people than any other creature on this planet. In fact, hundreds of people get sick in California every year from mosquito bites. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has created information flyers to share with our Monrovia residents, to ensure that we are being safe and aware while we spend time in the sun:

  • Wear mosquito repellent (i.e., Spray, wipes, or lotion)
  • Cover, clear, clean and throw away items that can hold water, which is a breeding ground for mosquitos.
  • Cover your skin when outside (i.e., Wear pants and long sleeves when possible). 

Mosquito InfographicMosquito Call 211

 


 

City Successfully Submitted Grant For Possible Bike Lane And Pedestrian Improvements To Better Connect All Parts Of Monrovia With Old Town And Station Square; Will Hear Back If Project Was Selected For Funding In December 2018 

On July 31, 2018, the City successfully submitted a grant application for the “ACTV Monrovia” proposal that would install protected bike lanes and a pedestrian walking path that aims to better connect all parts of Monrovia with Old Town and Station Square.

The ACTV Monrovia Plan - or Active Community Travel Vinculum – involves the possibility of converting both South Primrose Avenue and South Ivy Avenue into one-way streets beginning at Lime Avenue.  The plan would allow for the establishment of protected bike lanes without any loss of on-street parking, encourage traffic to slow down in the identified areas, and would also facilitate the “greening” of South Primrose Avenue and South Ivy Avenue, to create a more park-like setting for residents throughout the length of the identified project area.

A map of the proposed bikeways is included for your reference. We expect to hear back on whether our project was selected for funding in December 2018, and we will be sure to keep the community updated on the results and possible next steps!

ACTV Map


 

The Santa Anita Food Crawl Is Back! Enjoy Delicious Food While Supporting The Boy & Girls Club Of The Foothills

Enjoy a dozen dishes at 4-5 eateries, and experience how Westfield is redefining mall food. The expert tour guide, Michael Lin, revisits classic favorites and introduces new dishes that will blow your mind. Best of all, all proceeds will benefit the Boys & Girls Club of the Foothills in support of their summer program, which provides meals and educational enrichment to more than 500 area youth. Each $75 raised will provide a grocery bag of food for a BGCF family in need. In addition, Westfield Santa Anita will match the donations at the end of our series.

Upcoming Dates:

  • August 25, Saturday: Brunch Munch -- SOLD OUT!
  • September 29, Saturday: Bizarre Food Tour Challenge
  • October 27, Saturday: Chocolate, Cheese, & Chicken Cravings

Visit Westfield Santa Anita online for more details and to purchase your tickets!Food Crawl


 

“STIP Program” With Oak Crest Institute of Science Already Yielding Great Results, With a New Incubator Facility Currently in Development!

During the past few years, the City has been engaged in a directed effort to further advance the science and technology ecosystem that exists here in Monrovia.  Those efforts have involved facilitating the establishment of LabLaunch Monrovia, which was only the second bio-tech incubator in the San Gabriel Valley (with the first being Pasadena Bioscience Collaborative), along with directed business attraction efforts aimed at the science and technology sector.

Those efforts have produced real and meaningful contributions here in Monrovia during the past 36 months, as we have seen the addition of more than 300,000 square feet of new office space users here in our City, which have brought along with them more than 2,000 new jobs, primarily in the science, technology, and corporate office markets.

In an effort to continue building on these initiatives, and to further develop the burgeoning underground science and technology ecosystem here in Monrovia, the City entered into an agreement with the renowned Oak Crest Institute of Science (which is based right here in Monrovia on Chestnut Avenue!) to develop a Science & Technology Incubator Program, or STIP Initiative.

The overall program includes the establishment of additional incubator space for early and mid-phase start-up firms focused in the science and technology industries.  In addition, the City and Oak Crest are also collaborating to establish the following:

  • A shared-use program which allows entities participating in the STIP Initiative cost-effective access to key science and technology R&D equipment.
  • A workforce development program that is aimed at creating a school-to-jobs pipeline for students interested in pursuing a career in the science and technology fields.
  • A community-building program which incorporates routine social gathering events in Monrovia to further development of the local science and technology ecosystem.
  • A Junior Researcher Science Academy, which includes the offering of a summer science camp for interested youth, where participants will be engaged in graduate-school level science research work.

The flyer includes additional information about the overall program that the City and Oak Crest have established together, and we’re excited to start rolling out additional program details in the coming weeks and months!


Last Day To Sign Up For A YMCA Teen Membership and Participate In “Get Summer” Teen Night Events!

Teens can enjoy one more Final Friday Teen Night on August 24!  After closing at 8:30pm, the YMCA shuts their doors to all adults (except their staff, of course), and teens have full-run of the YMCA!  That includes pool, gym, special teen fitness classes, karaoke, etc., until 11 p.m.! Learn more on the YMCA website and sign up today for fun summer activities!


As Summer Heat Increases Water Usage… The City Has Collected a Series Of Rebates That Are Available to Help You Conserve Water

Water usage in Monrovia has jumped up nearly a quarter since Governor Brown announced the drought is over last year.  Groundwater levels in the Main San Gabriel Basin aquifer, where Monrovia gets its water, remain at dangerously low levels as water usage continues to rise and our region draws down available water resources.

Want to make improvements to your home or yard to start conserving more water? Luckily, rebates are available that can help you make a water-wise investment!

Available Residential Rebates from SoCal Water $mart:

  • High-Efficiency Clothes Washers – Uses 55% less water than standard clothes washers. Less water means less energy needed for water heating, lowering your energy bill too. Rebates start at $85. Clothes washers must meet or exceed the CEE Tier 1 standard.
  • High-Efficiency Toilets - Uses 20% less water than the WaterSense standard and flushes the same amount of waste just as, if not more, effectively.
  • Rotating Sprinkler Nozzles - Multi-trajectory, rotating streams apply water more slowly and uniformly to your landscape, encouraging healthy plant growth.
  • Rain Barrels & Cisterns - Collecting and re-using rainwater from lawns and gardens minimizes the amount of water flowing into your storm drains, sewer systems, and local waterways. Rebates start at $35 per barrel or $250 per cistern.

These are just some of the rebates available! You can estimate your rebate amount, subject to eligibility and current funding levels, and apply online when you’re ready!

Please watch and share Monrovia’s water conservation video to help spread the word about what’s happening in our region, and how it will be impacting us all in the coming months and years.  You can watch the full video online on the Monrovia Conserves webpage, where you will also find additional information on how you can make a difference by conserving water and limiting your outdoor water use.

Be sure to visit Monrovia Conserves for more information on Phase IV Water Regulations and for tips on how individuals can help our community save water together!

WW 0801


In Light Of The Drought, A New Deep Tree Watering Overview Has Been Developed For Resident Use!

In an effort to aide those residents who are torn between the need to water their trees and our current serious drought situation, staff has developed a deep tree watering overview that illustrates how to more efficiently water our trees.  The flyer outlines both the supplies needed and the process involved with creating your own deep watering system.  We hope that this tool helps provide interested individuals with an added way to keep their landscaping alive, all the while helping to conserve water.

Visit us online to learn more about Deep Tree Watering.

Deep Watering

 


 

Don't Miss The Last MAFA's Summer Art Walk Of The Year On August 25!

The Monrovia Association of Fine Arts (MAFA) Summer Art Walks in June and July were a huge hit!  If you missed out, worry not!  You have one more chance to enjoy art along the sidewalk in the 400 block of South Myrtle Avenue on the last Saturday evening of August (on August 25, 2018). 

Additional information can be found on the flyer below!  Many thanks to MAFA for all that they do to advance arts and culture here in our community!

MAFA 2018


Narrated Tour

Purchase Your Tickets Today For The Next Monrovia Historical Society Narrated Tour!

Don’t miss out on the Monrovia Historical Society’s 2018 Narrated Tours of Historic Monrovia with City Historian Steve Baker telling the history of each area of our fair City!  The tours have historically sold out quickly, so reserve early today!

The tours will be conducted as follows:

  • Tour 3:  Southeast Monrovia, Saturday, August 25, 2018, 10 am
  • Tour 4:  Southwest Monrovia, Saturday, September 22, 2018, 10am

Tickets can be purchased at the Monrovia Community Center ($40 per tour for Historical Society members; $50 for non-members).  Also, please keep in mind that each tour (which is facilitated on air-conditioned Monrovia Transit vans) only has 14 available seats, so make sure you get your tickets today!

Tickets are available for purchase at the Monrovia Community Center (119 West Palm Avenue, 626.256.8246) or by contact the Monrovia Historical Society (monroviahistoricalsociety1896@gmail.com, 626.256.3423).  Additional information is available on the flyer!


Do You Enjoy Reading And Relaxing Outside?  Then Stop By Julian Fisher Park And Visit The Newly Installed Little Library

Julian Fisher Park added a Little Library on Thursday, August 2.  This Little Library was built by Eagle Scout, Cameron Wong, who was directed to us by the Volunteer Center of San Gabriel Valley. Cameron was looking to complete a project that consisted of sustainability, community enhancement, and to be thoughtfully executed by the individual in order to earn his Eagle Scout badge.  The process began in January 2018 to select a neighborhood, design the Little Library, and obtain approval from the Eagle Scout Board.  After several months of perfecting the design, placement, and layout, we are happy to announce that the project has been successfully completed and installed!

Thank you to Cameron and the Public Services Team for all of their hard work in ensuring that our community enjoys this new addition for many years to come!

Little Library


 

This Week's Happening at the Monrovia Public Library!

The Monrovia Public Library is special community gathering place that makes a difference in the lives of children, teens, adults, and families of all kinds. Experience all that the Library has to offer by visiting us in person at 321 S. Myrtle Avenue, and if you have any questions, contact the Library at (626) 256-8274!

Culture and Conversation: Practice speaking English by discussing and reading the ‘News for You’ weekly newspaper in a friendly and relaxed setting. Build confidence in your work, school, family and social life. For more information, call (626) 256-8273 or email vcastellanos@ci.monrovia.ca.us

  • Wednesday, August 15, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m., Library Heritage Room

Speak Easy: Join us for round-table talking and practice speaking English in a friendly and relaxed setting. New topics weekly, including: popular culture, work and jobs, health, and more! Build confidence in your work, school, family and social life. For more information, call (626) 256-8273 or email vcastellanos@ci.monrovia.ca.us

  • Thursday, August 16, 12:00 – 1:30 p.m., Library Heritage Room

Friends of the Monrovia Public Library Book Store & Fall Book Sale

The next time you visit the library, don’t forget to check out “the only book store in town”, the Friends of the Monrovia Public Library Book Store! Located in the library, the store provides bargains and hidden gems for those who love books, wish to build their children’s libraries, or are looking for a unique gift for the bibliophiles in their life. All proceeds from the book store fund library programs and collections. Summer Reading, Veterans programs, the Makerspace Collection, and the Chinese Language Collection are just a handful of the items the Friends have supported over the years. The Friends of the Monrovia Public Library, established in 1957, have been raising funds and supporting the library for 51 years. The book store opened with the new library building in 2009 and is staffed by friendly and knowledgeable volunteers. We are grateful for their time and their willingness to serve.

If you would like to support the Friends and the important work they do for the library and community, drop by and stock up on some of your favorite reads at the store. You can also join the Friends, members receive special discounts and offers at the store! Membership rates start at $15 a year and make a wonderful gift. The Friends of the Monrovia Public Library is a 501(c)(3) organization.

For more information, visit www.friendsofmonroviapubliclibrary.org or stop by the Friends Book Store and pick up a membership application.

Friends of the Monrovia Public Library Book Store Hours (NEW): 

  • Monday - Saturday from 12 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Friends book store ad

And don’t forget to mark your calendars for the Fall Friends Book Sale on September 7 & 8! Help support library programs while building up your home library!

Friends Fall Book Sale 2018 hi res

 


 

Helpful Programs To Keep Monrovia Beautiful:


Interesting Story of the Week -   The Best Exercise You Can Get… Might Be A Hot Bath?

Our interesting story of the week comes to us from Newsweek, which reports that a Loughborough University study which identified that “bathing resulted in as many calories burned as a half-hour walk (around 140 calories).” 

If true, this study is great news for everyone who doesn’t get up at 4:00 a.m. to hit the gym!  Because now, instead, stop feeling guilty, this study seems to indicate that we should go ahead and hit the snooze button.  The field of research known as “passive heating for human health” has demonstrated that baths, saunas, and other ways of increasing body temperature passively – “as opposed to exertion” – could provide significant health benefits.

Hot Bath

So if you want to learn more about how you can get healthier by taking baths, click on the link below!

Why Taking A Hot Bath Might Be As Good For Your Health As Exercise

 


 

Police Department Weekly Report

View the most recent Police Department weekly neighborhood watch report for the period of August 2 – August 8, has been included for your review and reference.  During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 392 service events, resulting in 76 investigations.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Quote of the Week 

Love doesn’t make the world go round.  Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

– Franklin Jones

City Works to Find Balanced Solutions as We Prepare for a Housing Development Renaissance

Here in Southern California, we are faced with the daunting reality that things are about to get a lot more crowded.  Based on the latest demographic projections available, in the next 25-year planning period, the SCAG region (which includes LA County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County, and Imperial County) will, through natural growth patterns unrelated to immigration, add the equivalent population of the states of Oregon and Washington… combined!

That’s around 11 million more people in the greater Southern California region!

Against that backdrop, California is in the midst of a true housing crisis.  An oft-cited report published by McKinsey Global Institute illustrated the depths of the housing crunch here in the Golden State, where real estate prices are rising 3x faster than household income… where 50% of the State’s population cannot afford housing… where California needs to build 3.5 million more homes by 2025 to truly stabilize the housing situation.

And here in Monrovia, we’re impacted by these broader housing trends facing the State.  Because did you know that in our City, the average rent for an apartment these days is around $3 / square foot.

$3 / square foot… which means that a 1,000 square foot apartment will cost you $3,000 per month in rent.

That’s just not okay.

While there are many different proposed solutions to the housing issues we’re faced with today, there is only one for which there is near universal agreement… that if we are to stabilize housing costs in California, we need a massive increase in the supply of available housing.

For us here in Monrovia, we have been planning for this increase in housing during the past 20+ years.  Our initial ideas were developed through a 2004 Urban Land Institute Study commissioned by the City.  Those concepts were then codified in a 2008 General Plan Update that created areas of focused housing density in the edges surrounding Old Town, at Station Square, and on the west end of Huntington Drive.  Finally, in 2014, the City adopted the Station Square Transit Village Planned Development Area to allow for greater housing densities around our Gold Line Station.

And now, during the next several months, all of those plans will be coming to life as Monrovia is set to consider several large residential development projects that truly do reflect our community’s long term plans and vision for the City.  All told, there are currently around 2,200 housing units / rooms in the development pipeline, which constitutes a 15% increase in our total housing supply.  The map below outlines the location of these proposed development projects in the City.

 

Now in the next few months (from June 2018 – September 2018), the City will be considering three major projects that will feature close to 600 units / hotel rooms (highlighted in blue in the map above – Richman Development, Marriott TownePlace Suites, and AvalonBay).  Certainly, without proper context, these eye-popping numbers can be somewhat startling, and may elicit a strong initial reaction.  Because when dealing with policies related to growth, housing, and development, the issues often times end up pitting two sides against one another. 
 
On the one extreme, there are those who advocate for no-growth… that is, until we have more water, clean air, and no traffic, we should not allow any development whatsoever.  And on the other extreme, you have those who advocate for a pure free-market approach… that government should allow developers to build whatever they want, so long as the market will allow for it.
 
Here in our community, what we’ve been working on for the past 20+ years is to find a better way… a more balanced way… a true Monrovia way… in order to solve the pressing challenges facing our City.  And in an effort to offset the impacts associated with new development, the City has instituted several new policies and programs to mitigate growth issues that could erode the quality of life in our community.

  • First, on the environmental front… the City recently adopted a New Development Water Rate, which will require that any new project adding 5 or more units to the City pay the full cost of importing water from outside the region for their use.  This New Development Water Rate means that any new development projects will have to pay an effective water rate that is 34.4% more expensive than the normal water rate that current Monrovians are charged.  This policy enhancement will ensure that our existing residents and businesses are not forced to bear the added cost of importing more water into the City to serve a new population base.
  • Next, on the service delivery front… the City has adopted a policy that will allow us to create Mello-Roos Districts that overlay on significant new development projects.  Through this policy, all significant new developments will be required to pay an extra property tax assessment annually to offset the increased costs for police and fire services that are necessitated when major projects are constructed.
  • And finally, on the traffic front… the City recently instituted a new model of suburban mobility that provides Monrovians with simple, easy, and cheap public transportation options to combat increasing traffic and parking congestion trends.  The program we developed, which is called GoMonrovia, provides enhanced public transportation options provided through Lyft and LimeBike.  Under the GoMonrovia initiative, individuals have access to $0.50 Lyft rides anywhere in our service area.  In addition, the partnership developed with LimeBike has resulted in the deployment of dockless, shareable bikes located throughout town that can be accessed for $1.00 for a 30-minute ride.

 

During the next several months, as Monrovia contemplates the significant development projects that have been proposed here in our community, we do hope that you stay informed and stay involved with the issues at hand.  All of us here at the City have been working hard to try and find balanced solutions to the most important issues of our day.  Because while we do have to make sure that we have strong environmental policies, and while we need to develop premier mobility / transportation options for our residents… we also have to find a way to do our part to address the severe housing crisis we are confronted with today.  I know that by engaging in honest dialogue and working hard together… we can take the steps forwarded today that are needed to ensure that Monrovia has an even better future tomorrow.

City Establishes a New Web Page for Those Interested in Learning More About Significant Development Projects in Monrovia!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website.
 
This site will become the web portal for all documents related to each of the projects being considered, and information will be uploaded as it becomes available.  In addition, each project will have its own page with links to all the environmental and entitlement documents for public review. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hello everyone!

In an effort to provide an update of important news and notes from this last week, the following report has been prepared.  As always, please feel free to let me know if you have a question about any of the items contained in this update – I can be reached via email at ochi@ci.monrovia.ca.us!

And of course… all the best to you and yours as we continue through this week!

Best regards,

Oliver

Quote of the Week 

Love doesn’t make the world go round.  Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

– Franklin Jones

City Works to Find Balanced Solutions as We Prepare for a Housing Development Renaissance

Here in Southern California, we are faced with the daunting reality that things are about to get a lot more crowded.  Based on the latest demographic projections available, in the next 25-year planning period, the SCAG region (which includes LA County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County, and Imperial County) will, through natural growth patterns unrelated to immigration, add the equivalent population of the states of Oregon and Washington… combined!

That’s around 11 million more people in the greater Southern California region!

Against that backdrop, California is in the midst of a true housing crisis.  An oft-cited report published by McKinsey Global Institute illustrated the depths of the housing crunch here in the Golden State, where real estate prices are rising 3x faster than household income… where 50% of the State’s population cannot afford housing… where California needs to build 3.5 million more homes by 2025 to truly stabilize the housing situation.

And here in Monrovia, we’re impacted by these broader housing trends facing the State.  Because did you know that in our City, the average rent for an apartment these days is around $3 / square foot.

$3 / square foot… which means that a 1,000 square foot apartment will cost you $3,000 per month in rent.

That’s just not okay.

While there are many different proposed solutions to the housing issues we’re faced with today, there is only one for which there is near universal agreement… that if we are to stabilize housing costs in California, we need a massive increase in the supply of available housing.

For us here in Monrovia, we have been planning for this increase in housing during the past 20+ years.  Our initial ideas were developed through a 2004 Urban Land Institute Study commissioned by the City.  Those concepts were then codified in a 2008 General Plan Update that created areas of focused housing density in the edges surrounding Old Town, at Station Square, and on the west end of Huntington Drive.  Finally, in 2014, the City adopted the Station Square Transit Village Planned Development Area to allow for greater housing densities around our Gold Line Station.

And now, during the next several months, all of those plans will be coming to life as Monrovia is set to consider several large residential development projects that truly do reflect our community’s long term plans and vision for the City.  All told, there are currently around 2,200 housing units / rooms in the development pipeline, which constitutes a 15% increase in our total housing supply.  The map below outlines the location of these proposed development projects in the City.

 

Now in the next few months (from June 2018 – September 2018), the City will be considering three major projects that will feature close to 600 units / hotel rooms (highlighted in blue in the map above – Richman Development, Marriott TownePlace Suites, and AvalonBay).  Certainly, without proper context, these eye-popping numbers can be somewhat startling, and may elicit a strong initial reaction.  Because when dealing with policies related to growth, housing, and development, the issues often times end up pitting two sides against one another. 
 
On the one extreme, there are those who advocate for no-growth… that is, until we have more water, clean air, and no traffic, we should not allow any development whatsoever.  And on the other extreme, you have those who advocate for a pure free-market approach… that government should allow developers to build whatever they want, so long as the market will allow for it.
 
Here in our community, what we’ve been working on for the past 20+ years is to find a better way… a more balanced way… a true Monrovia way… in order to solve the pressing challenges facing our City.  And in an effort to offset the impacts associated with new development, the City has instituted several new policies and programs to mitigate growth issues that could erode the quality of life in our community.

  • First, on the environmental front… the City recently adopted a New Development Water Rate, which will require that any new project adding 5 or more units to the City pay the full cost of importing water from outside the region for their use.  This New Development Water Rate means that any new development projects will have to pay an effective water rate that is 34.4% more expensive than the normal water rate that current Monrovians are charged.  This policy enhancement will ensure that our existing residents and businesses are not forced to bear the added cost of importing more water into the City to serve a new population base.
  • Next, on the service delivery front… the City has adopted a policy that will allow us to create Mello-Roos Districts that overlay on significant new development projects.  Through this policy, all significant new developments will be required to pay an extra property tax assessment annually to offset the increased costs for police and fire services that are necessitated when major projects are constructed.
  • And finally, on the traffic front… the City recently instituted a new model of suburban mobility that provides Monrovians with simple, easy, and cheap public transportation options to combat increasing traffic and parking congestion trends.  The program we developed, which is called GoMonrovia, provides enhanced public transportation options provided through Lyft and LimeBike.  Under the GoMonrovia initiative, individuals have access to $0.50 Lyft rides anywhere in our service area.  In addition, the partnership developed with LimeBike has resulted in the deployment of dockless, shareable bikes located throughout town that can be accessed for $1.00 for a 30-minute ride.

 

During the next several months, as Monrovia contemplates the significant development projects that have been proposed here in our community, we do hope that you stay informed and stay involved with the issues at hand.  All of us here at the City have been working hard to try and find balanced solutions to the most important issues of our day.  Because while we do have to make sure that we have strong environmental policies, and while we need to develop premier mobility / transportation options for our residents… we also have to find a way to do our part to address the severe housing crisis we are confronted with today.  I know that by engaging in honest dialogue and working hard together… we can take the steps forwarded today that are needed to ensure that Monrovia has an even better future tomorrow.

City Establishes a New Web Page for Those Interested in Learning More About Significant Development Projects in Monrovia!

Given the significant development projects that are pending in Monrovia, the City has created a new “Development Spotlight” page on our website.
 
This site will become the web portal for all documents related to each of the projects being considered, and information will be uploaded as it becomes available.  In addition, each project will have its own page with links to all the environmental and entitlement documents for public review.