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Commentary submitted by Beverly Hills resident George Vreeland Hill.
Metro seems to have caused a divide between the citizens of Beverly Hills and those outside the city in regards to a subway plan that would run under Beverly Hills High School and the city.
Some people have accused us (the people of Beverly Hills) of being greedy, self-centered and selfish for not wanting a subway that would help others.
We and our city leaders feel that a subway would be a bad idea on many fronts.
Metro has obviously sided with those outside of Beverly Hills in an attempt to force the issue. What some people have forgotten or did not take much notice of is the fact that this is a Beverly Hills issue.
Metro has no right to force itself on the city, especially with rushed judgements and incomplete reports about their plans for Beverly Hills. I find it irresponsible and unbelievable that the MTA would even put forth a tunnel plan before the City of Beverly Hills had its own report of the matter in full.
We are not just talking about a tunnel under BHHS, but a tunnel under Beverly Hills. There are safety concerns with any project that requires going underground, but in this case, those concerns cover a wide area and involve many issues. Those many concerns have not been met to the satisfaction of our people or the city. In fact, not even close.
The tunnel that the MTA recommends would take out a number of buildings, and many businesses would be affected and future growth of those businesses would be hindered. For example, a tunnel under BHHS would make it hard, if not impossible, to expand the school or rebuild in some way in order to meet the future needs of our students, the school and the city.
The same goes for the hundreds (yes, hundreds) of businesses that would be affected by a tunnel. The MTA has stated that a subway would probably not interfere with future development. Well, probably is not good enough.
Rushed plans and incomplete reports just do not cut it where our city and our future are concerned. I trust the leaders of our city and those who say that the MTA tunnel plans are not in the best interests of Beverly Hills. I can also add that we do not want it. This is, after all, our city.
If you want to convince us that a subway benefits all concerned parties, then you will have to come up with another plan. One that leaves out BHHS, for starters. After all, there are too many unanswered questions and unknowns about safety and other issues concerning the current subway plans.
George Vreeland Hill
Beverly Hills Resident