Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Video: Developer Todd Boden Presents His Radical Water Saving Proposal For Sierra Madre To The City Council

To see Todd's video click here.
Way back on August 13 we posted our synopsis of the special City Council meeting held the evening before (link). A number of things were accomplished at that storied event, the most important of which being our five elected officials locked in a drought related building moratorium for the next couple of years. A very good thing for them to have done.

I am not sure if you have noticed, but it hasn't rained since then, either. Nary a droplet has fallen from our eternally blue skies. Another couple of years of this and, well, let's just say the smart money will soon start investing in bottled water. I don't know if you've ever given much thought to what life might be like if water could no longer be piped into your home, but it would likely put any negative thoughts you have about the yellow version far away from your day to day reveries on life. You could even feel the urge to get nostalgic for those good old days. Which really weren't all that good.

So today I thought we should take a much needed break from our two day reflection on the local child molesters (who apparently love Sierra Madre as much as some of our recent politicians once did), to spend a moment with a developer named Todd Boden.

Todd spoke at the August 12th City Council meeting, and through the miracle of a technology that I don't quite understand yet (Thank God for friends), we have now captured on video his short though emphatic talk about the building moratorium. It is linked above and to the left (click under the picture, please), and you can check it out there. Or just click here if you wish. You'll get the same result.

This is how I described Todd's talk in that August 13th post.

The comedic highlight of the evening came courtesy of a developer by the name of Todd Boden. Like many who are attempting to make some major bank in real estate insane Sierra Madre, he wishes to take a single lot and magically double his pleasure by splitting it into two. Kind of like an amoeba. Much to his chagrin, Mr. Boden has lately discovered that he will not be able to get a water hook up for one of his reproductive plots. Or maybe both. I can't exactly remember those details at this moment.

But where Todd really rocked the planet was with his claim that by pulling down old homes and replacing each with a couple of new ones, it would actually save water. Kind of a version of the old "development is green" canard that John Buchanan and Joe Mosca used to try and endlessly shove down our throats a few years ago.

Naturally his proposal that we should tear down the 20+ (20?!) year old houses to put up new ones in order to save us all was greeted with a bemused silence. I guess we'll need to pull a video for this one.

So there you go, we got the video. It took us a while, though. I will tell you why in a moment.

Todd is apparently the young Boden. He is the pride and joy of Fred Boden, the alpha male at Fred Boden Development, Inc. Daddy Fred and his young scamp Todd are amongst the leading local area practitioners of lot splitting. Currently a scourge here in Sierra Madre that most residents hate worse than, well, just about anything truly worthy of that emotion.

We really do enjoy calling them Amoeba Lots, by the way. They split in two and each part takes on a new life of its own. Though it is a much smaller life. Something that I believe proves that density really is a state of mind.

Certainly Todd Boden understands the concept.

There was a series of funny comments about the Bodens on the 13th. I thought I'd put up some screen shots.


More KGEM "technical difficulties?"

Here is that promised explanation about videos. Up until recently we were pulling them right off of the KGEM site, and that was working quite well for us. The Richard MacDonald video in particular continues to get a decent amount of views. Maybe his pals down at the Courthouse got wind of it, and they're telling all of their friends to get a load of what went down.

It is a kindness to bring laughter into the lives of those who experience so little joy.

However, apparently someone got all upset about our posting such videos here on The Tattler, made some phone calls to our killjoy City Hall, with the result being we have now been blocked. We can't pull videos down from KGEM anymore.

So what we are doing instead is taking a video camera and recording this content right from a TV screen. Primitive perhaps, but our dedication to engaging the public in the important issues facing local government in these trying times supersedes any such inconvenience to us.

But whoever blocked us, you really should be ashamed of yourself. Where's the transparency, right?

Besides, we're going to come up with a workaround no matter what you do anyway, so why not knock it off already?

http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

47 comments:

  1. This is a very funny speech. Putting in a house where there has been none before is good for water conservation. Huh.

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    1. Boden just needs a little redirection. If he would direct his rapacious building skills to constructing some dams in the many canyons here we'd have water aplenty and more recreation facilities.

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    2. what a whiny pest - lawyers and developers are so freaking annoying and just threaten lawsuits blah blah blah

      SM residents are sick of whiny out of town developers especially ones that make idiotic statements to the Council

      he's just slinging cow manure at us

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  2. Mr. Boden hasn't been here long enough to realize that "20 year old houses" are actually in the minority. Most of the houses are much older than that. So it follows that he thinks we should tear the whole town down and start again - to save water. Such a conservationist.

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    1. Boden did say he'd been thinking about it.

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    2. Bowden live in Bradbury

      how'd he get to be a water expert ?

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  3. To take this argument a step further, if there were no houses here we would have enough water now and be able to cut off the Joe Mosca pipeline to the SGVMWD.

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  4. Los splits are indeed the new rage in Sierra a Madre. Mr. Boden is probably going to take his cues from that great lot split over on Camillo just north of Grandview. If the neighbors over on Montecito want to get an inkling of how Mr. Boden proposes to enhance the neighborhood and save us all water at the same time, they should take a look.

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  5. So the city has taken steps to prevent the Tattler from downloading videos. Undoubtedly that was during work hours on the taxpayers dime. They want to keep residents as ignorant as possible of what is going on in this town. Thanks to the Tattler for surmounting all obstacles. Truth to power!

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    1. More videos! More!!

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    2. It must worry the city to see they're favorites shown like that.

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    3. what are you talking about?

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  6. Now I've heard everything. Boden says that by tearing down one small house and turning it into two eyesore McMansions we will somehow be saving money. I lump him right in there with Graves, Love, McDonald, Thornton from Mater Dolorosa and the rest of that bunch who will say and do anything to turn Sierra Madre into Arcadia while lining their own pockets at the same time.

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    1. it's hard to trust anything Bowden says cause he's said such blatantly false arguement's

      developers should not have any access to OUR public speech time and they should be given their time at the end of the Council meeting, last before adjournment

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  7. The city plan, or whatever it's called, needs to be revised to include lot splitting, decrease sq. ft. Of the house per lot size, address frontage issues and basements. I have not read the plan for a bit, so if these have been addressed in the revised version, make sure you get it right. The plan has not left the planning commission so there is time to make sure these things are done. I was in Santa Barbara over the weekend. I did see what adele labeled Santa Barbara style designs. All new, cheaply made and not in the original style of Santa Barbara. With a little more effort and design, she could come up with better. As for Boden, most of the houses here are old. They have managed to survive several earthquakes. Many now have water saving features as they have been updated through the years. Will his homes withstand this test? Will his homes have any of the features that master builders did back in the day? Remains to be seen. At this point, I don't have to worry about my neighbors 2 story monstrosity falling down on my property. There is enough room between the houses here for safety. An aside, I read in the star news that one of mc Donald's clients pulled out of financing some multi-million dollar projects in Pasadena. Maybe his kingdoms is crumbling.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are a number of improvements that need to be made to the general plan, building codes and zoning so that developers can't do what they seem to be trying to do. All loopholes need to be closed. We have one chance and we must get it right.

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  8. Developers say the darndest things.

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    Replies
    1. Maybe something in the water makes them talk in tongues.

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    2. why does SM attract such shifty developers or at least ones that really insult us?

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    3. The city tells them Sierra Madreans are stupid and will believe anything you tell them.

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  9. I must say that these videos are great. Many people can't attend the meetings and it's a great service for the Tattler to provide quick recaps of the more entertaining moments. When the city tries to block you from doing it, you know you're doing something right.

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    1. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when the city got those calls.

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    2. It should be understood that part of the development approval process is getting your video on The Tattler. Especially if you say or do something weird.

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  10. I remember when Lee Cline used to record the city council meetings from the tv feed on VCRas it was going on. He had a whole library of past council meetings and could go back and review anything he felt he needed. Anyone still have a VCR recording machine?

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    1. One of the many things we miss since the passing of this friend of the city. A good friend and great man, I think of him often when dealing with city business, always thinking how wood lee get it done!

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  11. This Bowden lot split is at the NW corner of Canon and Montecito. He tore down the existing garage in the process of turning the back yard in to this second lot. Now the garage has been rebuilt in the same place, but maybe he turned the opening to a different side. I followed him out of the CC meeting when he went to the podium with his new houses use less water rubbish and he lied to me about the problem being there was never a driveway out onto the alley that Montecito is along there. Of course not, as it was one lot/one houses with the driveway out to Canon. So, to make an older house more water efficient you can change the fixtures, new washer, washing machine, low flush toilets and all you have to dispose of in the landfill are these old fixtures, not the whole damn house, concrete foundation and all. Water is used in more ways than just flushing and washing. It is used in the manufacture of all sorts of building stuff. Old houses, new fixtures = best conservation of all!

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    1. he's a developer - doesn't live here - doesn't give a rip except flipping a house

      expect him to lie

      just listen what he is telling the Council, this will probably be his last venture in SM, he's got eyebrows raised about his sincerity with regards to the environment

      he's another green guy, green dollas

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  12. You have got to follow up on these houses on Camillo. If these don't create a push for hard development standards nothing will. Let me know if you need me to send a picture, although I fear it will break my camera lens. The picture could and should be juxtaposed with the picture of the lovely home that used to be on the lot as shown on the yahoo maps link posted in the comments a few days ago. The people involved in the approval of these twin beasts should be outed and canned.

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    Replies
    1. You are correct. The "two for one" fiasco on Camello defies any semblence to normal or good planning. Danny Castro and company should be chastized and have home design approval removed from their job description. Castro with Aguilar oversight are exactly what Sierra Madre does not need. No Taste, Bought Off, and not in the least interested in the preservation of Sierra Madre.

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    2. I agree 2:02 that what has happened there is so bad that there needs to be consequences.

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    3. Who with the city let this lulu through?

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  13. I went by the Camillo monstrosities today. No signage as to architect or builder. Only 1 group I know of does that. Also, up the street is a new tear down. No signage again. One other thing the planning commission should do is see the plans before they are allowed to build. Also, I went by the very u busy water main project. 1 panel truck at Churchill, with one guy standing around looking I to a square hole, with his hands on his hips. Is this only week two or is three weeks already? Great progress!

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    Replies
    1. What group do you know of that doesn't announce themselves?

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    2. The AWest Fan Club.

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  14. Google maps still has the old houses that were on Camillo. I'm not sure of the exact address, but it's close to 334 Camillo, if not exactly that. You can see what was there before.

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    1. I think it's 318 Camillo. And you can see the For Sale sign on that old, beautiful lot.

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  15. it would be very unpc for me to say. all i know is that most builders put a sign. this particular group does not, saw it all over Arcadia when i lived there. just as newly built homes never went through regular brokers. a mud-sol across from me in arcadia never had any advertising for sale.

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  16. Do city employees ever leave their offices to look around town? Maybe developers know they can put buildings up and nobody from the city will ever notice it.

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    1. When was the last time the city shut down an out of compliance project?

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    2. come on we are expecting too much from the inspectors and our esteemed PD code enforcment

      don't forget the Congregational Church built a complete remodel almost directly across from City Hall for months and months and nobody noticed

      and the construction was not properly permitted and what did our city do? grandfathered in the work and no fines

      do that with you your own home and see what happens from the city

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    3. 3:30 my neighbor did a garage remodel into a 2 story garage with playroom, bedroom and bathroom. City signed off on everything.

      During an inspection, the city was surprised to see a bathroom and had signed off on it and told my neighbor he had to remove the bathroom just cause, no real reason given

      ended up keeping it after paying a 2nd or 3rd fee - city bends over backwards for developers and real estate clans but a resident is brutalized

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  17. what are the odds Susan Henderson comes out in favor of Bowden and that he is right

    building a home where there isn't one will actually save water? wow that is funny and inept, Susan will back it up with research where she'll quote a "resident" and it'll be Tom Love or John Buchanan but not identified.

    and him overbuilding on lots, misleading neighbors adjacent to his development, is that business as usual?

    so it's right up the Mt View News alley

    can't wait to see her coverage

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    Replies
    1. Susan will say, "The Mountain Views News spoke to a well respected water expert and he said that Todd was correct, more houses do mean more water."

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  18. Im glad I moved out of Sierra Madre when it was still a nice friendly place. You folks have gone mad. A guy cant even paint his house without all you people complaining about it. Why don't you all just privatize Sierra Madre and create an HOA. That would help pay for your water tax increases.

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    1. I think the idea of preserving the whole town is a great one. Like Bungalow Heaven in Pasadena, we could be an historical district, town-wide. Property values would increase even more than they are now.
      When you have something this good, you want to take care of it.

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    2. Water isn't taxed here, 8:30. Just our patience with people like you.

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    3. Boden-proof Sierra Madre.

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