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Letters to the editor: sound walls, Spartan, poetry and rattlesnakes

March 16, 2011

Are sound walls the best solution to freeway noise?

City council members are currently considering spending more money on sound walls ( “Council discusses sound wall,” March 10). Much has been spent on studies in the past, and now $4.5 million has become available from Measure R funds.

Years ago, I suggested to council members that they spend a few thousand dollars having a consulting engineer estimate the effectiveness of sound walls in our community. Before spending big money on sound walls, I again urge this analysis be done.

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I believe, as [former City Councilman] Jerry Martin has suggested, that traditional sound walls will have little benefit here (and are certainly not worth the cost). The sound may be reduced close to the wall, but further up the canyons it could be worse. The walls would need to absorb the sound, not merely reflect and scatter it.

A better approach to reducing noise might be to pave the freeway with asphalt, which is much quieter than concrete. How about preventing trucks from the 210 tunnel in Pasadena, which always backs up now? How about enforcing noise regulations on trucks and motorcycles?

Let’s do the fiscally responsible thing and not just spend the $4.5 million. We should have done this with the recent boondoggle project of replacing curbs and repaving areas that did not need it.

Glenn Hauser

La Cañada Flintridge

Praise for the Spartans

Like many members of our community, I’ve been very fortunate to witness and play in some exciting sporting events over the years. Each one was special because one or two particular athletes made, or missed, a key play. Others were fun because of the venue surrounding the game itself.

But I’m not sure I’ve ever had more excitement or fun than watching our La Cañada High School Basketball Spartans defeat Inglewood on Saturday night at the high school gym. There is something special about this team. It has something intangible that is hard to put into words. They play extremely hard, as all good teams do, but there is something else going on. They way the ball flows down the court to the open shooter, the positioning and hustle on defense, the cool calmness and intensity under pressure. The enthusiastic support from the bench. It all works, and it’s magic.

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