Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, June 25, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 3

3 Mountain Views-News Saturday, June 25, 2022 CONVERSATIONS.......THE MEADOWS 3 Mountain Views-News Saturday, June 25, 2022 CONVERSATIONS.......THE MEADOWS 

I hit the trifecta of impacts from the proposed Meadows at Bailey Canyon 
project. My home, which I grew up in and was built in 1948, abuts the Monastery 
property and will be one of the most affected homes if the Meadows 
project is approved. I will have to put up with the construction noise and 
dust. I will be looking at homes where now all I see is the “meadow”. Being 
on a corner, I will also get the increased traffic. If you only listened to the 
most vocal voices out there then I should be the most upset person in Sierra 

But I’m okay with all of this. I’ve seen many changes on the Monastery property. 
I grew up with the annual Fiesta where we would have 15,000 people 
coming up and down our street and 5,000 cars would be parked outside my 
living room window in the parking lot (aka “the meadow”). 

I’ve seen the expansion of the Retreat Center, the old unreinforced Monastery 
building razed after the earthquake, restrooms built on the Fiesta 
grounds, and a new garden and patio where the Monastery used to stand. I 
expect the Mater Dolorosa will continue to grow and adjust as their needs 
change, and I respect their right to do so. 

In 2007, the Passionists created a Master Plan which included selling off a 
portion of their property for housing. This option had been on the table for 
40 years but they didn’t feel it was the right time until now. The city knew 
that the area was ideal for housing so, at the Passionists' request, they left 
that option open in the 1996 General Plan. That wasn’t changed until after 
the Passionists proposed a housing development. 

The Passionists have been good neighbors to me and to Sierra Madre, serving 
their community for almost 100 years. The property, which is zoned Institutional, 
would allow them to build a large assisted living facility matching 
five Kensington’s, except three stories tall and with over 500 residents. 
The Passionists don’t want to see large Institutional buildings and neither 
do I. 

You have probably heard talk about the size of the proposed homes. Many 
of these same people who started the initiative to rezone the property to the 
Hillside Residential zone wanted an institutional project which could have 
massive buildings compared to what is currently proposed. We know the 
size of homes is not their concern because they have no problem with the 
large three-story retreat center or a new huge assisted living project. But hey, 
try to build two-story homes and suddenly it is a travesty worthy of stripping 
the development rights from the Mater Dolorosa. 

Let’s try to keep this in perspective. The reality is that the proponents of 
the initiative care about one thing and that is stopping the only project out 
there. If this project is denied then you can be sure they will be fighting 
whatever is next, just like happened at One Carter which cost the city hundreds 
of thousands of dollars in legal fees only to end up with homes still 
being built up the mountainside. 

Those opposing any project don’t care about the collateral damage, or if 
Sierra Madre loses a new park or the net-zero water offsets or the properties 
placed in conservancy. And worst of all, they have no concern if they 
discriminate against the Passionists in the process. 

Did you know that if the initiative passes and rezones to Hillside Residential, 
the Passionists could just sell the entire property and build around 
thirty 6,500 sq. ft. homes plus another thirty 1,200 sq. ft. homes and no one 
can stop them? Support reasonable development and support your elected 
officials. Allow them to do their job and to weigh the pros and cons of any 
legally submitted project to determine what is best for the city. Don’t let a 
group of neighbors violate the rights of the Passionists.
Dave Link, Sierra Madre Neighbors for Fairness and neighbor of the Monastery 
for 65 years 

News | Sierra Madre Neighbors for Fairness 


“Misinformation” is a running theme in the “Meadows” debate. Last week’s article by Preserve Sierra Madre 
(PSM) was titled “Mater Dolorosa Continues to Promote Misinformation.” But they forgot one thing, to say 
what this supposed misinformation was. Sierra Madre Neighbors for Fairness has pointed this false accusation 
problem out before. 

If one wants to be seen as credible then one needs to back up their claims. It takes work to read something 
carefully and critically. SMNFF regularly quotes claims we are questioning and we provide references for 
claims we make, yet we are still regularly (and vaguely) accused of spreading misinformation. We have 
made repeated requests to show us specifically what misinformation we are spreading and where we said it 
so we can address it. 

Here is an example of a misrepresentation we saw last week. In PSM’s article they accused the City Council 
of not having any discussion of the options available to them regarding the ballot initiative. The city clerk 
read what options were available to the City Council. Only one option included gathering more information 
to find out what the impacts of the initiative would be. Since the City Council had concerns about the 
initiative the only rational option available was to ask the city attorney to prepare a study addressing these 
issues. But PSM frames this as the City Council not asking questions and called it all “strangely orchestrated 

– as if they had decided beforehand” – but they also said it was “as expected they asked Council to prepare 
a report.” If this was as expected, then what was strange about it? Nothing. This is just a way to malign the 
Council for doing what was expected, but what PSM didn't want. 
Another point of misrepresentation was how during public comments most of the people speaking were 
directly tied to the Mater Dolorosa and not Sierra Madre residents. Let’s put that statement in context. The 
number of speakers who live in Sierra Madre and spoke in support of the Passionists out-numbered two to 
one those who spoke in opposition to the project. PSM also failed to address the main point of those speaking 
in support of the Passionists, which was the issue of taking away their development rights at the retreat 
center. Instead they framed it that the Passionists were hurt that people were opposing the housing project. 
This sort of misrepresentation is not surprising coming from those who show no regard for the religious 
rights of a 100 year old institution in the city. 

Sierra Madre Neighbors for Fairness does not hold a position on the Meadows project, but we do accept 
that the Passionists have protected rights, including the right to sell off part of their property, to propose a 
project for it, and to have fair hearings by the Planning Commission and City Council. PSM and STOP the 
Housing Project want to circumvent that process and take the decision away from our elected officials by 
getting a mob to vote away the Passionists' development rights. This is what we are fighting against. We are 
not fighting for any project. We are standing up against religious discrimination. 

News | Sierra Madre Neighbors for 




Catch breaking news at:
We are Sierra Madre neighbors opposed to the initiative targeting the Monastery 

John Doyle 

Lived in Sierra Madre for 10 years 

"The initiative violates fundamental property 
rights and the first amendment right to practice 

It will cost city taxpayers at least $50,000 to place 
this petition on the ballot which is an unnecessary 
waste of taxpayer money. 

Sierra Madre taxpayers would have to pay." 

Ad paid for by Sierra Madre Neighbors for Fairness, a Coalition of Local Residents, Taxpayers, and Mater Dolorosa Passionist Retreat Center; 
Committee major funding from New Urban West 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 
Email: Website: