You have probably chosen to live in Topanga because of its beautiful environment filled with wildlife and amazing parklands. In contrast, much of L.A. County has lost these qualities and succumbed to suburban sprawl. It is not an accident that Topanga has not. The Topanga Association for a Scenic Community (TASC) has been on the frontlines in the fight for Topanga’s rural integrity for 54 years.
During all that time, TASC has maintained that safe and orderly development is acceptable, with the caveat to “Let the land dictate the use.” TASC continues to monitor never-ending threats of inappropriate development in the Santa Monica Mountains and works cooperatively with local, state and federal agencies to achieve benefits for all residents.
- TASC is involved in discussions and actions pertaining to the Westfield expansion in Woodland Hills, which according to Westfield management, “Woodland Hills will become the new Downtown L.A.” The project proposes a 15,000-seat sports arena and housing/shopping complex that will increase population density with the result that traffic along Topanga Canyon Boulevard (TCB) and air pollution will negatively impact Topanga specifically, and the Santa Monica Mountains overall.
- Developers are suggesting that the last portion of Mulholland Drive, which connects with Santa Maria Road into Topanga, be paved. The reasons given are bogus and attempts in the past have failed.
- TASC is involved at an advisory level with the update of the North Area Plan that guides development and recreational use in the Santa Monica Mountains outside of the coastal Zone.
- TASC has actively protected native and non-native trees from removal by changing the vernacular from “Native vs. Non-Native” to “Alive and Healthy vs. Dead and Dying” TASC’s argument has always been, “How long does something need to be here before being considered “native?”
- TASC and the Topanga Chamber of Commerce successfully worked with L.A. County and state officials to name 1.3 miles of Topanga Canyon Boulevard (the S-Curves) a designated Scenic Highway for the first time in more than 40 years.
- TASC members and others maintain a Sunday Morning Trash collection along TCB and Old Topanga Canyon Road.
- TASC remains in discussions with Caltrans regarding the temporary K-rail and fence that was recently installed in the burn area of the Topanga Fire last June above TCB near PCH, to mitigate potential erosion from winter rains. TASC and Caltrans agreed that the fence would be removed after one year if there is no demonstrated need for it to remain.
- TASC worked with Caltrans to remove concrete that was laid under new guard rails on North TCB.
- TASC is a member of the Las Virgenes Homeowners Federation (lvhf.org) that has been “The voice and conscience of the Santa Monica Mountains since 1968.” It is an umbrella organization of homeowner associations and groups in the Santa Monica Mountains and environs dedicated to bringing residents, government agencies and stakeholders together to improve the experience of the Santa Monica Mountains.
BECOME A MEMBER
TASC Board members are Chair Roger Pugliese, Ron Fomalont, Toby Keeler, Ken Mazur, Robin Fomalont, Dan Larson, Andrea Crawford, Ari Fomalont, Julie Rosendo, Bill Carrier and Rabyn Blake.
We proudly stand on the shoulders of those who came before in our 54 years protecting this canyon.
To become a member, dues for one year are: Individual, $15; Family, $20, and donations are always welcome. For more information and to donate: TASC, P.O. Box 352, Topanga Ca. 90290; tasc4topanga.org.
By Roger Pugliese, TASC Chair