Planned new development in the Glendora Marketplace raised ongoing concerns over the traffic flow in the heavily congested intersection of Lone Hill Avenue and Glendora Marketplace.
The only public hearing item on Tuesday’s Glendora City Council meeting was to a approve additional signage and square footage for new businesses in the Glendora Marketplace, but the discussion turned to the traffic circulation plan included in development plans for a future Panera Bread restaurant, and Joann’s and Sprouts stores.
The council unanimously approved two additional monument signs along Lone Hill Avenue and additional square footage for the Panera Bread drive-thru. Still, questions over the traffic circulation plan remained unanswered.
Mayor Pro Tem Gene Murabito echoed concerns n that traffic could be further impacted, especially with the proposed new location of traffic signals, limited access to store driveways and the current width of the streets to make U-turns. The commission approved the design review hoping that city staff would continue to improve traffic conditions in the area.
City staff said some surrounding businesses were reluctant to the changes in traffic circulation plan, which staff said was drafted with the recommendations of an independent engineer’s analysis. Businesses such as believed that the plan placed access restrictions to their restaurant. Planner David Chantarangsu said the planning department met with representatives for In-N-Out to resolve traffic issues.
Another major concern was . Staff suggested the awkward traffic flow could be mitigated if Home Depot decided to open a driveway for additional access.
Planning director Jeff Kugel said Home Depot representatives had known about the traffic plan for a year, but the store was still had not agreed to recommendations.
“If I vote yes tonight, I don’t want my vote to indicate that I am approving the traffic circulation plan because I am not," said Murabito.
But city staff maintained that voter approval of Measure C in 2009 left little room for changes in the master plan.
“I was told this discussion could not take place because the master plan had been approved by the voters. I disagree with that,” said Murabito. “The planning commission represents the city and that discussion needs to take place.”
“The traffic circulation plan was not approved by the voters,” said City Attorney D. Wayne Leech. “But do we really want the planning commission to approve traffic circulation in public right of way? That generally isn’t their jurisdiction.”
However, two city council members believed that traffic flow concerns at the Glendora Maretplace would be solved over time.
“Without us going back to a strawberry field, we’re not going to make [the Glendora Marketplace] perfect, but we’re going to make this as good as we possibly can,” said Council Member Karen Davis, adding that Home Depot may reconsider opening their driveway in the future.
“It’s in [Home Depot’s] ball park in what they want to do and it won’t stall this project,” added Council Member Joe Santoro.