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SGV Connect

SGV Connect is Streetsblog Los Angeles' podcast that explores the people, places, projects and events that make up the changing face of transportation in the San Gabriel Valley. SGV Connect is hosted by Damien Newton and Kris Fortin. This feed also hosts SGV Connect's predecessor podcast, #DamienTalks.
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May 22, 2024

This week’s SGV Connect continues our theme of focusing in on various areas of the SGV for our podcast episodes by looking at the Greater Pasadena area.

First, Damien and Chris traveled to El Sereno to meet with some of the Reclaimers, unhoused residents of El Sereno who moved into Caltrans owned properties during the pandemic. Benito, Sandra and Fanny return to SGV Connect (their first appearance can be found here) to advocate for affordable housing and community spaces, discuss the ongoing eviction battle between Caltrans and the Reclaimers. Personal stories and experiences are shared, emphasizing the need for accountability and justice from those in power: especially Caltrans, the county’s homeless services provider, and Los Angeles City Councilmember Kevin DeLeon. A transcript of their discussion can be found here.

This discussion references the Roberti Act, passed in the 1970’s to guide Caltrans on how to manage and eventually sell these properties. A good description of Roberti can be found in this article about the competing vision between the Reclaimers and DeLeon for El Sereno.

Rick Cole has been a regular commenter at Streetsblog and Santa Monica Next for years. After his election to the Pasadena City Council in March, we reached back out to him to discuss the need to improve Pasadena's transportation infrastructure and engage the community in a more inclusive and proactive approach to address gentrification. Cole emphasized the importance of prioritizing safety, affordability, and alternatives to car use, and the need for a more inclusive approach to urban planning, involving the public in decision-making processes. A transcript of their discussion can be found here.

 

SGV Connect is supported by Foothill Transit, offering car-free travel throughout the San Gabriel Valley with connections to the new Gold Line Stations across the Foothills and Commuter Express lines traveling into the heart of downtown L.A. To plan your trip, visit Foothill Transit. “Foothill Transit. Going Good Places.”

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