Residents of the Chino Valley are understandably exasperated by the conditions on Pine Avenue and nearby streets.
Too narrow in spots, with dips and jogs, these roads are frequently congested.
Additionally, the City of Chino wishes to address congestion on these roads where there have sadly been car crashes, injuries, and fatalities. Making matters worse, stretches often flood, requiring frequent road closures every year.
We have an opportunity to eliminate many of these bottlenecks in the Preserve - without residents spending a dime - but inaction by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is preventing this from happening.
Last summer, the Chino City Council approved the two-building Majestic Chino Heritage project for the corner of Mountain and Bickmore avenues.
Part of our forward-looking approval requires the builder to make unprecedented monetary contributions and infrastructure upgrades, including the raising and widening of the Pine Avenue dip east of Euclid, as well as providing 28 acres of frontage right-of-way throughout Preserve neighborhoods, all of which are critical to improving these roads to their master-planned widths.
This development, and the many public benefits and road improvements that it will bring, is ready to proceed but has been in limbo for over three years with the Army Corps.
Why the delay by the Corps you may ask?
Evidently, the Army Corps is concerned that a hypothetical mega-storm might hit in which rainwater might do what it has never done before: slowly back up five miles behind the Prado Dam to this property.
By the Corps’ own calculations, such a storm might occur every 1,000 years, on average, and that’s not even accounting for the extreme mega-drought that we’re experiencing, which would make such a storm even less likely to occur.
Plus, even if this hypothetical storm were to ever hit, the Corps calculates that it would take two and a half days for water behind the Prado Dam to slowly back up this far - which by any measure is more than enough time for employees to leave these two buildings.
The Army Corps does a great job protecting the public and is undoubtedly often faced with weighing relative risks - with life safety being paramount but this one should be easy.
Unfortunately, it seems the Army Corps is more worried about a hypothetical storm that may never occur than they are worried about the daily risk to the health and safety of our residents right now.
At any given time, there is less than a one percent chance that a hypothetical 1,000-year storm could cause Prado Dam backwaters to ever even reach the Chino Heritage buildings.
But in the meantime, there is 100 percent certainty that our residents deserve these roads to be improved in The Preserve that this project would help accomplish.
Members of Chino’s City Council and residents have made their voices clear.
The Army Corps needs to do what’s right and immediately approve the Majestic Chino Heritage project so that its many public benefits can help protect lives in the greater Chino Valley - today.
Mayor Eunice M. Ulloa
City of Chino