GPW: Self-Tempered Anarchy since 2009

Your GPW Editor-on-Occasion is Petra Fried in the City.
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stories along The Way

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Comments on the "Crystal Springs Baseball Fields" proposal due Dec 17.

Folks, please weigh in on this project and it's suitability or lack of suitability to this location.

Read the Draft Environmental Impact Report  [DEIR] for this proposed project here.

Then submit your comments one of these ways:
  1. Directly via e-mail to  Maria Martin  at   with the SUBJECT LINE: Griffith Park Crystal Springs - Draft EIR

  2. By writing to:  City of Los Angeles, Public Works, Bureau of Engineering, Environmental Management Group, 1149 S. Broadway, 6th Floor, Mail Stop 939, Los Angeles, CA 90015-2213
Someone may want to comment on the fact that the DEIR only has three choices:  two at Crystal Springs, and one at Atwater, and that a better location that is clearly missing from the DEIR is the Ferraro site where there is easily room for realignment to include this project - plus the location would greatly benefit from related upgrades.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Alternate Atwater site for "Crystal Springs Ballfields" project is the clear "Win-Win" choice.

Should the construction of brand new baseball fields displace thousands of daily picnickers and permanently destroy heritage trees at Crystal Springs?

Certainly not, when there is a perfectly reasonable alternative.

That's not the case, however,  if you listen to the cacophony thrown up by Councilmember Tom LaBonge and his supposedly unbiased proxies, some of whom currently dominate the board of what used to be the Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council and have their own personal pet projects pending in Griffith Park.

No one really knows why the councilmember has set his sights on Crystal Springs. I sure don't.  Why on earth is LaBonge determined to willfully disenfranchise thousands of families of predominantly Hispanic descent who rely on and heavily utilize the Crystal Springs picnic area, and have done so for half a century?

There is a perfectly reasonable alternative site for the proposed project that does not result in the permanent loss of heritage trees and that does not wholesale displace an entire large, historic user group at the picnic area. The alternative site on the Atwater side of the park should be chosen, rather than forcing the construction of additional ballfields at Crystal Springs for what are highly questionable reasons.

FoGP has a pretty clear and reasonable description of why the alternative is the best choice for all interests here.

The alternative Atwater site is a win for both the councilmember and friends, and the thousands of families that likely have little to no idea this project is in the works - or what may be decided largely without their input about Crystal Springs: a place that has been a family tradition each weekend for generations.

If you can stomach the manufactured hysteria and questionable testimony that will no doubt be unveiled by LaBonge's propaganda machine (lord these folks are noisy... and relentless), I hope you will bring your rationale mind and come to the EIR Presentation Meeting  - a meeting dubbed 'do or die' by LaBonge's proxies at the local paper - which takes place this Wednesday.

Read the draft EIR first - especially the discussion of the alternatives. Then come to the meeting and point out that the alternate Atwater site represents a win-win proposition for both sides. 

Let's hope the councilmember who ostensibly represents all people of CD 4 will have an epiphany on this when rational minds speak up.

EIR Presentation Meeting info:
A public workshop and hearing will be held, beginning at 5:30, on Wednesday, November 20, 2013, at the Witherbee Auditorium of the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, 5333 Zoo Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90027.

Please use the Children’s Discovery Center entrance.

Those who cannot attend the meeting but want to go on record may submit their comments directly via e-mail to: Maria Martin  with the SUBJECT LINE: Griffith Park Crystal Springs - Draft EIR

Or write to City of Los Angeles, Public Works, Bureau of Engineering, Environmental Management Group, 1149 S. Broadway, 6th Floor, Mail Stop 939, Los Angeles, CA 90015-2213.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Just Give

A friend found this in their email in-box yesterday. They have no idea what/why, and neither do I after reading it.
Sent: Tue, Nov 5, 2013 12:01 pm
Subject: RSVP Today for Private Reception with Councilmember Tom LaBonge Nov. 12!

Dear Friend,

Please join Councilmember Tom LaBonge at a private reception next Tuesday November 12, 2013.

Who: Councilmember Tom LaBonge
When: Tuesday November 12, 2013 from 6:00-7:30pm
Where: Lucy's El Adobe - 5536 Melrose Ave Los Angeles, CA 90004
Suggested Contribution: $5,000 (raise), $1,000 per couple

If you are interested in attending please RSVP to me, Stephanie Daily Smith, at or call (310) 497-8162.

I hope that you can join us!
Stephanie Daily Smith

Smith was a campaign staffer for Garcetti, but that race is pretty much over now. Best guess: LaBonge staffer Ramsey's run for CD 4.

I won't be spending $5,000 to find out for certain what this is about, but if you do - drop us a line and let us know.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Micromanagement of a Legacy

What can you say about an agenda for a two-hour board(sic) meeting that has more than 70 different agenda items? Besides WTF, that is.

An agenda like this is clearly symptomatic of something.

    panic comes to mind first.  

    obsession, second.  

    who actually manages the parks? third.

And finally:  

     doesn't the Councilmember have an entire council district to be worrying about?

This last is a very good question, and in this particular case, it is getting asked a lot lately. The answer is apparently not, if Steve Lopez's puffy 'Boss For A Day' piece is any indication.

Los Angeles' city councilmembers are the highest paid among key cities in this entire country. It would probably be best if they worried about the big stuff that affects their 280,000 constituents rather than micromanaging their perceived legacy.

There's plenty of big stuff that needs addressing across Los Angeles right now to keep any councilmember very very busy.

Griffith Park Resource Board Meeting
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
5:00 – 7:00 PM

Welcome, Introductions and Review of Meeting Notes

Report on Active Capital Improvements:
•Report on status of Griffith Park Superintendent
•Legislative Report [Council Motions]
•Status of Griffith Park Water System
•Status of Griffith Park Southern Water Recycling Project
•Status of Walking Path Trail from Greek Theatre to Observatory
•Status of Los Angeles Park Rangers Program
•Status of Implementing Circulating Passenger Van for Observatory
•Status of Increasing DASH Service from Metro Stop
•Status of Transportation Pilot Program for Access to GP via Beachwood Cyn
•Status of LADOT Zoo Drive Signal/Traffic Study

Grants Reports:
•Fern Dell Tongva/Gabrielino Tribe Recognition & Amenities -$50,000
•Fern Dell/Black Oak Storm Drain & Resurfacing Project -$150,000
•Merry-Go-Round Restoration - $10,000
•Travel Town - $20,000
•Travel Town Gift Shop (from NBC Universal) - $50,000
•Zoo (from NBC Universal) - $50,000
•Griffith Park Pool Extended Hours - $12,500
•Holiday Lights Festival at Zoo - $100,000
•Symphony in the Glen - $5,000
•PAVA - $5,000
•Independent Shakespeare Company - $2,500
•Holiday Family Film Event at Merry-Go-Round - $1,500
•Merry-Go-Round Anniversary - $500

Report on the Recreation and Parks Projects
•Status of Griffith Park Vision Plan
•Crystal Springs Youth Sports Baseball Fields
•Travel Town mobile gift shop/Travel Town Train Pavilion West
•Adult fitness equipment at Park Central
•Permanent stage at Old Zoo
•Griffith Park road improvements
•Griffith Park signage
•Griffith Park Recreation Center play area improvements
•Griffith Park historic pool restoration (proposed)
•Griffith Park Recreation Center soccer field electrical rehabilitation

Report on Griffith Park Land Acquisitions:
•Cahuenga Peak
•Mt. Lee Area
•Forest Lawn
•Lake Hollywood parcels A, B and C

•Other sites:
Report from the Autry National Center
Report from the Los Angeles Zoo
Report from Griffith Observatory
Report on the LADWP Projects
•Aqueduct Centennial Garden at Mulholland Memorial Fountain
•Headworks Reservoir
•Griffith Park South Recycled Water Project
•River Supply ConduitUpdate

Report on the Los Angeles River & Bridge Projects:
•Alternative 20
•Glendale-Hyperion Viaduct Improvement Project
•LaKretz Crossing
•Riverside Drive

Report on Public Works Projects:
•Mt. Lee Drive
Mt. Lee Communications Center

Report on Griffith Park Events
•Special Events
•Holiday Light Festival at Zoo
•Holiday Family Film Night
•Haunted Hayride
•Arts and
•Symphony at the Glen
•Eek at the Greek
•International Shakespeare

Report on Public Safety
•Park Rangers
•LAPD Report - Lock ItHide It Keep It
•LAFD Report

Report on Griffith Park Office of Councilmember LaBonge’s Volunteer Projects
•PAVA - Weekly
•UCLA Day of Service
•Immaculate Heart Earthcare Day
•CD4 Cleanups in all areas of the park