Friday, November 21, 2008

More Pondering Concerning the Waterfront Development Project

As the final submit date for comments regarding the Environmental Impact Reports for the Waterfront Redevelopment Project is very soon, you may want to ponder some information if you have any concerns regarding new cruise ship terminals in the Outer Harbor at 'Kaiser Point'.

The "Prefered Project" includes two piers to allow for cruise ships to call on our port in the Outer Harbor area, near Cabrillo Beach and the entrance to marinas.

One of the Alternatives, Alternative Four does not include the passenger ship terminals at 'Kaiser Point' and is somewhat similar to the plan advanced by Community Groups throughout the area.

Here are a few things that may help you ponder better whether you like the idea of cruise ships calling on our port at 'Kaiser Point':

The two Project Genesis ships now have been given names.

Royal Caribbean Lines is a company that brings cruise ships to our port and owns the largest cruise ship that has ever called on our port, Freedom of the Seas.

Freedom of the Seas carries a 'mere' 3,670 passengers compared to the two new ships now under construction for that cruise line.

Oasis of the Seas will be launched next year and will carry approximately 5,400 passengers.

Its sister ship, Allure of the Seas is set to be launched in Autumn, 2010 and will also carry approximately 5,400 passengers.

Freedom of the Seas also has two other 'sisters' of equivalent size and a letter of intent for the construction of a fourth ship.

I will stop now and provide information that not all of the largest ships being built will necessarily call on our port on a regular basis, but the trend in shipbuilding is to continue to build large ships to replace some of the other smaller ships now calling on ports throughout the world.

Disney Cruise Lines operates the Disney Magic during the summer in our port.

Disney is building two new ships, that will carry approximately 4,400 passengers. These two ships are much bigger than the Disney Magic which carries between 2,200 and 2,400 passengers depending on what literature you read.

If you have ever seen the Queen Mary II call on our port, you have seen what you think is a very large ship. It may be, but it only carries about 2,092 passengers.

Celebrity Cruises has ships calling on our port, too. That cruise line is launching four 2,850-passenger ships between 2009 and 2012 and some of them may be regular callers to our port.

It is time to stop here and wonder whether the folks dealing with the redevelopment of the Port of Los Angeles have sat down with members of the Community Redevelopment Agency to have formative discussions on how to revitalize both our port and our downtown at the same time, for many similar purposes.

Creating downtown San Pedro as a destination area rather than a transfer area for cruise ship passengers can't be a bad thing, can it?

Carnival Cruise Lines has two 3,600+passenger ships being launched in 2009 and 2012, but that cruise line uses a terminal in Long Beach.

Our port also welcome Princess Cruise Lines and a good number of their ships have 2,200+passengers each.

Remember the "QEII" or Queen Elizabeth II? You should remember that it came after the R.M.S. Queen Elizabeth.

There will be a new 2,092-passenger Queen Elizabeth being launched that may call on our port from time to time. It will probably be like its sister ships the Queen Mary II and the Queen Victoria and be too large to head up our main channel.

There are also many other things to ponder about what you want to see with the project. You may want more retail, more marinas, more historical items, and more public spaces.

Whatever you want to see, you are welcome to create comments and submit them before December 8, 2008.

COMMENTS: Written comments on the Draft EIS/EIR will be received through December 8, 2008 and should be sent to both of the contacts listed below.

Dr. Spencer D. MacNeil
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles District Regulatory Division, Ventura Field Office 2151 Alessandro Drive, Suite 110
Ventura, California 93001

Dr. Ralph G. Appy,
Director of Environmental Management Port of Los Angeles
425 South Palos Verdes Street
San Pedro, CA 90731

Comments can also be sent via e-mail to: Comments sent via email should include the project title in the e-mail’s subject line and a valid mailing address within the email.

For additional information, please contact the Corps’ Public Affairs Office at (213) 452-3920, or Jan Green Rebstock at the Port of Los Angeles at (310) 732-3675.

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