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NFL

NFL Stadium Plan Downtown Sees Some Neighborhood Opposition From Resident Gina Zapanta And Other Locals and Businesses

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Tue, Sep 6, 2011 at 5:24 PM

click to enlarge Cheers for Farmers Field. - DENNIS ROMERO
  • Dennis Romero
  • Cheers for Farmers Field.
Updated at the bottom with endorsements today for the stadium plan. First posted at 4:56 p.m.

For the first time that we know of organized community opposition to the downtown L.A. stadium plan has cropped up. It comes to us in the form of a letter sent to California legislators who are considering letting Anschutz Entertainment Group, the folks behind the NFL proposal, off the hook for possible lawsuits stemming from its environmental impact report for the venue.

A letter endorsed by 27 area residents and businesses states that "we are greatly concerned with traffic, noise, pollution and quality of life issues that only a full and complete environmental review will analyze."

The letter expresses "our opposition to the proposed development of Farmers Field." The document was the brain child of downtown resident and attorney Gina Zapanta, who told the Weekly today that her main concern was traffic:

I do not understand how you're going to fit 80,000 people for a Monday Night Football game downtown. I don't know how you're going to do it logistically. Downtown can be a parking lot. It's not set up for it.

She says her neighbors are also concerned but that there hasn't been an avenue for them to complain about it until now.

Zapanta says she's planning on starting a formal opposition group and website.

"You can imagine how many people are going to be on board," she said. "I know there's a genuine interest in opposition to this."

Meanwhile, the letter, from a self-described "coalition of local residents" continues to hammer the need for a transparent EIR:

The developer -- Anschutz Entertainment Group -- has greatly exaggerated the benefits of this project and is now working the backrooms in Sacramento to avoid having to conduct a full and complete Environmental Impact Report ...

A bill introduced to the state legislature last week would fast-track the EIR process for the proposed stadium.

Zapanta:

Can you imagine 80,000 people trying to get into a game, what kind of air quality there will be for us? The traffic, the noise, the tailgaters ...

Update: We were just told that environmental groups including the National Resources Defense Council and the California League of Conservation Voters today formally endorsed the fast-track bill for the stadium.

[@dennisjromero/djromero@laweekly.com]

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