‘Nothing but praise’ for new challenging crossword puzzle

To the Editor:

I have been an avid reader of The Argonaut since its inception. When the crossword puzzle was added, much later, I was thrilled.

Since then, I have had occasion to write several “Letters to the Editor” pointing out facts such as “clues too small to read” and “last section of clues omitted,” etc. I was one of the first to be acknowledged for complaining about the simplicity of the puzzles after the Washington Post puzzles ended.

Today I have nothing but praise for your efforts to offer puzzles which take some thought and a little more than 15 minutes to complete. I am into the end of my first hour with this week’s puzzle and still need to complete the final third.

Thanks for all that help to bring us “older folk” the stimulation that our brains require to flourish.

Martyn Glover, Playa del Rey

County gives Marina area bike path update, plans

To the Editor:

In response to a “Letter to the Editor” in the August 21st Argonaut regarding establishing a dedicated bikeway along Fiji Way, we have the following to report:

The Marvin Braude Bike Trail extends for 21 miles from Will Rogers State Beach in Pacific Palisades to Torrance Beach. It traverses Marina del Rey as primarily an off-road bike path, except for the portion along Fiji Way, where bicyclists ride in the street.

The County of Los Angeles plans to widen Fiji Way between Admiralty Way and the terminus of Fiji Way to accommodate striped bike lanes in both directions. The installation of bike lanes on Fiji Way will close the gap in the Marvin Braude Bike Trail.

In addition, these bike lanes will improve connectivity between the other regional bikeways, including the Ballona Creek Bike Trail, the Culver Boulevard Bike Trail, and the bike lanes on Lincoln Boulevard and Venice Boulevard.

The county received a grant in the amount of $805,000 through the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s [Metro’s] 2007 Call for Projects to finance a portion of the project cost. The project design is scheduled to begin in January 2010 and construction is planned for fiscal year 2011-12.

The existing bike path has directional signage throughout Marina del Rey. There are 60 bike lockers on the northwest corner of Bali Way and Admiralty Way and 20 bike lockers in Admiralty Park across from the Ritz Carlton Hotel. There are bike racks available at many of the public facilities, such as the library and at Burton Chace Park. There are also bike racks at many of the private leaseholds throughout Marina del Rey.

We appreciate the community’s interest in the condition of the bikeway facilities in Marina del Rey. Questions regarding bikeways should be directed to our bikeway coordinator, Mr. Abu Yusuf at (626) 458-3940.

Dean D. Efstathiou, Acting Director of Public Works, County of Los Angeles

Says LAX Air Quality Study ‘is a sham’ that seeks only to blame other pollution sources

To the Editor:

Page 9 of the September 18th Argonaut reports on the September 10th meeting presented by Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) on the LAX (Los Angeles International Airport) Air Quality Study.

This study is a sham because no health effects epidemiology study for the community is being performed, no monitoring stations in Playa del Rey and Westchester were used, and no emission measurements of aircraft were made. The five ambient air monitoring stations used were all in the southeast quadrant of the airport, not where planes take off.

The Emissions and Dispersion Modeling System is defined [on the FAA’s Web site] as “a complex source microcomputer model […] to assess the air quality aspects of airport emission sources […] which consist of aircraft auxiliary power units, ground support equipment, ground access vehicles and stationary sources.”

Please note that aircraft engines (gas turbines) were not even included as an airport emissions source.

The real objective of this study appears to be “source apportionment,” which means to find someone other than Los Angeles World Airports to blame for the poor LAX air quality and the “nasty black stuff” that people in Playa del Rey have to breathe. The airport’s targets include the Hyperion sewage plant, the Department of Water and Power (DWP) Scattergood power plant, the El Segundo generating station, Northrop Grummann, Chevron refinery, ships at sea (they showed a photo of a container ship), the Chevron Marine Terminal, the Interstate 405 and 105 freeways, and eight major roads, including Manchester Avenue and La Cienega Boulevard.

Thus we have one City of Los Angeles agency (Los Angeles World Airports) blaming L.A.’s Sanitation Department, Street Department and the Department of Water and Power.

As far as this hocus-pocus being a “landmark study to determine the emissions,” please note that I (with W. H. von KleinSmid) actually measured and published in the scientific literature (CEP magazine, pages 92-94, May 1981) aircraft gas turbine emission data over 27 years ago.

Alex Weir, Jr. Ph.D., Playa del Rey