The Huntington Beach City Council on Monday unanimously rejected plans for an RV storage lot in the eastern section of the city, deciding the lot was incompatible with adjacent neighborhoods.
The council vote marked the climax of a months-long battle over the proposed lot between residents of an adjacent neighborhood and developer Doc Rivers.
Residents from the Aragon Circle neighborhood and Mariners Point Mobile Home Park showed up in force with a coordinated and well-researched presentation on the consequences of the proposed lot, including public safety hazards, reduced property values, environmental impacts and a diminished quality of life for residents.
The presentation -- which consisted of a detailed PowerPoint with each resident presenting a different topic -- was so convincing that planning commissioner John Scandura, who signed off on the project in a planning commission meeting, said it got him to change his mind.
Scandura was particularly swayed by Aragon Circle resident Tim Karpinski's presentation on the potential fire hazard of the lot -- something Scandura said was not discussed by the planning commission.
"That I can guarantee you would have changed the tone of the discussion," Scandura said.
Council members agreed with Scandura and after visiting the site decided it was a bad fit for that area of town. Councilman Don Hansen described the plan as being a "round-hole project and we're trying to put a square peg in it."
Jubilant residents hailed the vote as an example of the power residents have over decisions at City Hall that directly impact their lives.
"It's a tremendous relief, but something I believed once the council looked at it, they would know it's a bad idea," said Mike Garner, a resident of the Aragon Circle neighborhood. "Though it's been a long process, it's a good example of representative government."
-- ADAM ELMAHREK