DVDに関しては数と種類も多く、新作映画がけっこう補充されるから有り難い。最近借りたのは『The Duchess』と『The Kite Runner』。
サンタクララ市議会で公聴会があったあの日、会場に新聞記者がいたらしい。San Jose Mercury News(インターネット版）に今回の事の記事が載っていた。
『Large construction at Santa Clara's Mansion Grove disrupts bucolic setting, likened to 'Slumdog' living 大規模工事によりサンタクララのマンション・グローブは牧歌的環境から一転”スラムドッグ”と化す』
建設が部屋の目の前で突然始まった住民達の驚きと怒り (*｀д´)b NO!、集団訴訟を起こすまでの経緯、サンタクララ市が 介入するに至った経緯等々 。
By Jessie Mangaliman
"Walkable, Livable," intoned the breathy Web site promo for Mansion Grove, an apartment complex in Santa Clara that is home to 1,000 residents, many of them Indo-American immigrants working in the high-tech industry.
But the simultaneous construction of seven buildings that will house 124 new units has turned the once-bucolic apartment setting into what one resident compared to living in "Slumdog," the Mumbai slums depicted in the Oscar-nominated movie "Slumdog Millionaire."
In a lawsuit filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court, some residents, who are seeking unspecified damages for "suffering and unsafe conditions," said the construction has turned Mansion Grove into a safety hazard pit of improperly stored construction material — backhoes and heavy equipment blocking walkways and garage entrances. They said there are few parking spots, and parking places for the disabled are often taken by construction vehicles.
Residents said they were misled by the owner, Prometheus Real Estate Group, when they signed new leases that failed to disclose the extent of the construction, characterizing it as "minor renovation."
"There's a building being built just outside my balcony," said Raghu Machavaram, a design engineer who rents a one-bedroom with his wife, Ahalya Nathan. "I can't open the balcony door. There's dust. There's noise. There's parking problems."
Machavaram, one of nine plaintiffs in the lawsuit, said he and his wife are planning to move out. Their attorneys are seeking to have the lawsuit certified as a class action.
Lee W. Clark, an attorney representing the San Mateo-based Prometheus, said the company has filed "an answer and generally denied the allegations."
"In our opinion, we have made good faith efforts as a landlord to clearly communicate with all our residents," wrote Nathan Tuttle, Prometheus senior development manager, "as well as to try and preserve their quality of life inasmuch as is possible during a project of this magnitude."
In a January letter to Kevin Riley, the city's director of planning and inspection, Tuttle acknowledged the disruption caused by the construction.
Santa Clara is not a defendant in the lawsuit. But many residents are critical of city officials. Machavaram said their response to residents' complaints has been "not far enough, not fast enough." The city approved the project in January last year, construction began in June and Prometheus officials said they notified residents in February and May. But tenants claim the notification was insufficient.
Yogesh Jain, a former Mansion Grove resident, moved out last month because the noise and disruption "became unbearable." Prometheus officials gave him a $230 rent discount from $1,600, he said, then reneged, and then served him an eviction notice.
Jain, a software engineer who emigrated from India in 1997, is a permanent resident. He suggested the city's lax response may be because most of the unhappy residents are Indo-American who are not yet voting citizens.
"The city cares very much. We are aware that there are inconveniences certainly," said Deputy City Manager Carol McCarthy. "Some residents would like it to go away. But it can't."
City inspectors have not found any safety violations at the site, officials said. The project is scheduled to be completed by end of this year and early next year.
The city is now reviewing present construction management plans, McCarthy said, to help improve conditions at the site and is considering new construction management standards for large-scale projects.