Good news, bad news.
The good news is that now that we are no longer filming Psych, I’ve lined up some jobs in Hollywood.
The bad news is that I have to be in Los Angeles for extended periods of time.
This is a real struggle for someone who loves the Northwest, especially during an extended drought that is turning the Golden State into the Dust Bowl.
Locally, the smog is horrible and the traffic is in a state of permanent gridlock. There is no longer a rush HOUR in LA—the freeways are always jammed and the overflow has spilled into all of the local streets.
You take your life in your hands just walking around because pedestrians are regarded as at best irritants and at worse easy targets.
If this sounds cataclysmic, that is exactly what it is. This place has reached a critical mass and the city fathers and mothers just keep issuing more building permits to grow the tax base.
As you all know, the Zookeeper is all about solving problems and not just complaining about things. Taking the bull by it’s horns.
Sometimes the best solutions are incredibly easy. The population of Los Angeles is a shade over 4 million and I have found a way to reduce this number by 25 percent.
I am forming a new city—let’s call it Melvindam (think Amsterdam)—that will take one million residents of the LA Basin and move them to a wonderful breezy location along the California Coast. It’s a 30-mile stretch between Santa Barbara and Buellton.
There are a great many people who live in Los Angeles who don’t need to be there. They aren’t working in the movie industry or the aerospace industry and they mostly have service jobs that could easily be transported to Melvindam.
If you are a doctor or a merchant or in any of the service industries, a city of one million will give you lots of patients and customers and clients.
If someone has to commute, I am installing a high-speed commuter train along existing tracks that run along the Pacific Ocean. Those lines will be able to connect to the new Metro subway system that is crawling towards completion in Los Angeles.
After scouting many locations, I chose this stretch to build my city because it is primo land that slopes down to the ocean and it is very sparsely inhabited. There will be very little disruption to the very few existing residents, and while we will remove those residents using eminent domain, we will certainly reward them at a reasonable rate.
If they don’t like it, too bad. How do they think the railroad and every interstate highway was built in America. Steven Spielberg and James Cameron and the others who are rumored to have big beautiful ranches up there that they hardly ever go to—get over it. Think of the greater good. Take one for the team, the big team—Planet Earth.
One of the great things about this location is that the housing will be built in a sustainable cluster and virtually every residence will have an ocean view. The lack of really high end housing will keep away a certain, shall we say, elite type of buyer who might prefer to have a big house somewhere behind a wall.
Water won’t be a problem because I am running a pipeline from an Arctic iceberg directly to Melvindam. This might sound outrageous but the city of Santa Barbara actually researched just such a solution during the seven year drought in the 1980’s. True.
All the cars and trucks and buses will be either electric or run on natural gas and hydrogen as that becomes more readily available. Needless to say, if you a regular reader of the Zookeeper, you won’t be surprised to hear that leaf blowers will be banned.
Imagine, a beautiful location overlooking the Pacific Ocean with wonderful westerly breezes and no smog and no noisy combustion engines. Every once in a while the whoosh of a high speed train going by.
And don’t worry. If we sell out before you can get your act together to make the move, I’m already eyeing a lovely stretch of Oxnard farmland for our companion city, Meltopia.