Big Wave Story Poles
Big Wave has declined to erect story poles until the Feb/Mar 2010 final EIR hearings, citing the cost of the poles, disruption of planting the winter crop, lack of legal mandate, and the visual renderings included in the DEIR.
Regarding the excuse of a winter crop, there hasn’t been nor could there be any winter crop that could grow and be harvested at the project site before February or March 2010. Agricultural management of heavy clay soils, especially in such a marshy location, requires avoiding working or driving on the soil when wet, which destroys soil structure and causes compaction in even the best of soils. In fact, if the applicant waits to construct the story poles until the fields are saturated in winter, they will have a very difficult time of it, and they will do much damage to the agricultural soil. This is the kind of place that when saturated, your feet sink in and you can’t move them except to step out of your shoes.
I imagine story poles for such large buildings would indeed be expensive, but erecting them in boggy conditions may cost even more. If the concern is that winter storms will damage them, it should be pointed out that some of our strongest winds here are in March. There should be a maintenance requirement no matter when they are erected.
The renderings in the DEIR may or may not be accurate or representative, but they certainly will not be seen by many. When the story poles go up, Coastside residents and visitors will suddenly all become aware of the visual impacts of the project. This public awareness should not be so severely restricted in this public comment period which is the only opportunity for the public to have any influence on the determinations in the final EIR.