Port Hueneme Surfside Condo owners/residents concerned about increased port rail traffic

By Tom Dunn

Editor’s note: Nearby PH SurfSide4 Condo board meeting last month ….

Part 1   The February board meeting was attend by 50 very interested homeowners, other nearby HOA board members and two city council members, all interested in hearing what Kristen, Will and John from the Port of Hueneme had to say regarding the rail line behind SS4. Kristen spoke first on the history of the port and its relation in Port Hueneme and surrounding areas.  The rail line was built in the late thirties and came into it own during WW2.  Next she spoke about the use of the rail line over the last 50 years, which was rarely used in the last 10-20 years.  The rail line is suppose to be inspected 4 times a year, but the last test was In 2013 due to a change in ownership. 
Kristen then said that there are no immediate plans for the rail line use. However, there may be use in a year or two or more, but no plans have been  presented except that the rail line maintenance was going to be done to keep the tracks and bridges safe in accordance with safety requirements.  Part of the reason for considering rail line use is complaints of trucks on the city streets, pollution from the trucks, rail is less expensive and other industries other than cars and fruits may want to bring products into the port and the rail line could be an option.  This is currently just possibilities and many changes and regulations would be looked at as to the effect on residents, traffic patterns and quality of life for those who live next to the tracks, before any train is contracted to run here.  According to Kristen the port and  G&W rail line owner will work closely with the city and residents to insure every concern for safety and quality of life is addressed for the homeowners that live near the rail line.
Next was a Q&A session of the homeowners asking questions of the port representatives.  I cannot remember all the questions or have the means to correctly state them, however the following  issues and concerns were addressed.  The topics/issues that were voiced were as follows:  noise/pollution from the trains, vibrations from the trains on the structural integrity of the homes and condos next to the track, days and hours of track use, limiting time and hours of track use, traffic congestion at rail crossings, safety of children and adults ie. fences/walls, as needed to protect people and limit access to rail line, safety of bridges and  supports, property resale values, economic increase to port and city, any upside to residents living next to rail line if city and port increase profits and if any future expansion or increase in rail line use is to be considered.
Some of the questions were answered by the port representatives and the other questions would have to be answered by G&W.  Kristen said she would ask G&W to come to a SS4 board meeting in the very near future to discuss rail line use and their plans for the future of the port rail line.  The board is hoping that a April or May meeting would work for G&W and Kristen would contact them to schedule asap. If anyone at the meeting or anyone unable to attend has a question, please submit your question to The Voice and the board will see that your question is addressed.  If I left out anything important please let me know and I will forward it to our readers.   
 Thanks to all that attended for your concern and input!!!
Part 2  At the normal board meeting the board informed homeowners that SS4 received a $12,000 insurance claim check for damage incurred last year.   Termite work is ready to start on Bldg L.
Lordon Mgt legal department said it is ok to put a plaque up in a common area if it is paid for by donations.  A motion was made to put up a plaque for Ruthie in the common area outside the left side of the Pelican Club where there is a bench and a wall.  Other plaques meeting the same criteria could also be put up with board approval. The board approved.  Another motion was made to allow residents to put up a painting on empty wall space as approved by the Pelican Club committee and the board.  The painting could be sold if someone wanted the painting. 
There were no homeowner complaints, so the board will take that as a congratulation for work well done.   The Voice           

Tom Dunn is a required communications executive, residing in Port Hueneme.    
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