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Letters to the Editor

Coming out of the pandemic, I’m reminded of the importance of friendship

I recently had a birthday celebration at my house for a dear friend and it reminded me, after a year of not being able to get together, of what an important role friendship plays in our life. Isolation from close friends was just one of the deprivations of the pandemic. Last week there was an article in one newspaper comparing a return to normality to that of coming out of a cave. 

Because we all had been vaccinated in February, my five retired teacher friends and I, for the very first time in over a year, got together without masks. It was a liberating experience seeing my friends’ full faces other than on Zoom. We spent five joyous hours together, talking and eating and sharing birthday toasts.

One of my thoughtful friends even bought us all matching aprons to symbolize the emotional comity we shared before and during COVID. During several years since retirement, we stayed in touch via a shared text thread, several times a week. We had emotionally supported each other during those years, particularly during the isolating period of quarantine.

We all continue to wear masks and socially isolate when we go out and get together with people out of our social and familial environments. And we plan to do so in the year ahead. But for that one afternoon, we were able to come out of our caves and enjoy each other’s company and mutually express our gratitude to the scientific miracle that made it possible.

Lynn Lorenz

Newport Beach

2510 W. Pacific Coast Highway Project comes to council on April 27, our voices need to be heard

The 2510 W. Pacific Coast Highway Project will be heard at the upcoming Tuesday, April 27 City Council meeting at 4 p.m. 

Why should Newport Beach residents be concerned about this project? This ill-conceived project will set a precedent with regard to the first mixed-use project along Mariner’s Mile. The project will incorporate a 35-foot high “monolithic structure” that will include low-income housing and an elaborate car dealership.

The applicant’s representatives took only two view simulations, one from John Wayne Park and one from Cliff Drive Park. (Ironically, the Cliff Drive Park is approximately a half-mile away from the 2510 W. PCH Project.)

The City’s General Plan states that this area on the inland side of Pacific Coast Highway, at the foot of the bluffs in the vicinity of Tustin Ave., Riverside Ave. and Avon St., presents a unique opportunity for the creation of an active pedestrian-oriented retail district.

The 2510 W. PCH Project has no retail or amenities and serves no purpose; however, it will generate unnecessary traffic in an already very tenuous area. These streets are “one-way” along Tustin, Oceanview and Avon Alley.

The General Plan states that the goal for development along Mariner’s Mile requires that projects are compatible with adjoining residential neighborhoods and open spaces, are well-designed and attractive, minimize traffic impacts and provide adequate parking.

The 2510 W. PCH Project disregards all of these elements and is inconsistent with the current General Plan, the City’s LCP and the California Coastal Commission policies.

The residents remain the largest revenue for the City of Newport Beach and our voices need to be heard loud and clear on April 27. 

This project does not benefit the surrounding communities of Bayshores, Lido Isle, Newport Heights and Cliff Haven; it will create more harm than good.

If the 2510 W. PCH Project should pass, it will forever be a “gross disfigurement” along our beautiful bay.

Peggy V. Palmer

Newport Beach