Monday, September 9, 2013

Enough with the urban sprawl in Moreno Valley!

During the last several weeks, local Moreno Valley residents have been objecting and questioning the runaway logistics development now taking place in the heart of their city--oops, we made a typo. Runaway logistics sprawl is taking place at the outer edge of their city in the eastern residential areas and in spots that once had rural ranches and agricultural farms.

There's been much local response to our recent post on this matter as shown on the Facebook pages of Save Mo Valley, and Moreno Valley Residents Against Warehouse expansion. Residents are demanding the city government to put the brakes on the World Logistics Center, and for good reason. On Sunday, The Press Enterprise put in its opinion pretty much echoing the Coalition's position. We've noted that the newspaper generally supports business-friendly policies in its editorials, but also knows that pollution control is one of those government regulations that is absolutely vital.

As demanded by the local residents, public officials from all levels need to wake up and take action! Right now, the Moreno Valley City Council is not looking out for their residents, is pandering to logistics developers, and does not care if the the quality of life collapses in Moreno Valley with the resulting diesel pollution and added truck traffic through the Badlands hills.

Moreno Valley Urban Sprawl: World Logistics Center

Here's a fact that needs to be factored into this whole situation. According the South Coast Air Quality Management District and reported by the PE, out of the total square footage of proposed warehouses and distribution centers in Southern California since 2010, Riverside County dominates a whopping 75% of the Southland's logistics sector of 112 million square feet. Factor in San Bernardino and that adds up to 97%, but here's the headline. More than one third of the 112 million square feet of warehouses points to the proposed World Logistics Center at the base of the Badlands hills.

Right now, there are no proposals to link this hub via rail to the proposed Long Beach GRID logistics hub and there's a multitude of other unaddressed questions. Where are the plans to increase capacity on the 60 Freeway through the Badlands without disrupting the local ecosystems? Where are the private sector incentives to develop cleaner truck technology already in use on our buses to clean up Moreno Valley's air quality? We don't want the 60 and the 91 Freeways turning into the I-710. We don't want Moreno Valley turning into the smog-covered Los Angeles of the 1980's. We certainly don't want the Inland Empire's air quality turning into Beijing's. The World Logistics Center is an epitome of urban sprawl, and concerned citizens and the local press are well aware of it.

A call for action

The situation in Moreno Valley is not about global warming. It's not about UN's Agenda 21 which, for the record, we do not support at all. It's about doing away with pollution and corporate corruption. If Moreno Valley wants jobs and more housing, allow the private sector to come in, invest, and revitalize the existing Sunnymead and Perris Boulevard corridors. Keep the logistics jobs as close to the rail lines and the March ARB area as possible and offer incentives for cleaner ways to move freight. If the land owner of the World Logistics Center property wants to invest in it, find alternative ways for the entrepreneur to capitalize on the land that's compatible for the local area and the Badlands ecosystem, such as dividing the land parcels for rural ranches, creating a robust agricultural district for local produce, investing in a mixed-use recreational or youth district for residents, building a great park which would boost the tourism sector, or any other proposal that will benefit the welfare of Moreno Valley and provide the much-needed marketplace jobs without the pollution and traffic congestion.

Enough with the urban sprawl!

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