The following email from Granada Hills South Neighborhood council landed in my inbox last week, and I've got to say they've got a damn good point. These low-lying FiOS boxes are wack -- and whack, too -- as in you could easily whack yourself into one on a bike or skateboard.
Granada Hills doesn't have much in the way of bike lanes, so we cyclists often use the sidewalks -- which is perfectly legal by the way, if you're not biking "in a manner that shows blatant disregard for pedestrian safety," which I don't. But the needlessly low placement of these boxes is quite the screw you, pedestrians and bikers! move on Verizon's part.
Verizon's people need to get their lazy asses some ladders and move these things up higher on the pole, but they're probably not going to do it unless we make some noise. Don't get me wrong, I loves me some FiOS, and I'm using it right now, but jeez, Verizon, give us some room.
If you're a bum like me who doesn't have a day job (What? Writing this blog? You're kidding!), consider sharpening your civic griping stick (a/k/a pitchfork) and showing up at the meeting coming up this Friday, September 11 at 9:30 a.m. in L.A.
You may have seen the equipment cabinets that Verizon has been installing in various areas in the City of Los Angeles. These cabinets are part of Verizon's new FiOS network. Many of these cabinets have been installed within the public right of way at a height that interferes with traffic visibility and presents a hazard to pedestrians. Additionally, the cabinets are a graffiti nuisance.
The Granada Hills South Neighborhood Council, along with neighboring councils and area resident's groups, has been working with Verizon and the City to address the blight and hazards caused by these cabinets.
On September 11th at 9:30am, the Board of Public Works will be considering a recommendation that will require the cabinets to be relocated - either raised to a reasonable height, or converted to permitted installations.
Your support is needed to ensure that our efforts are successful. Please attend the meeting if you can (meeting location below), or write a letter with any personal experiences that you may have. We have heard reports of children on bicycles and skateboards running into these boxes and of associated minor injuries. If you have knowledge of or witnessed such an incident, please write with information that can be presented.
The Board of Public Works will hear this issue at their regular meeting on September 11th at 9:30am:
Edward R. Roybal BPW Session Room
Room 350 City Hall
200 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, California 90012
You can reply to this e-mail or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you can write directly to the Board of Public Works. Be sure to include a subject line referencing "BPW 9/11/09: Request by Verizon to install pole mounted fiber distribution hubs at low height"
Board of Public Works
Room 361-P, Mailstop 464
200 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012-4801
Member, Board of Directors
Granada Hills South Neighborhood Council