Saturday, June 6, 2020

Corralitas Drive: Sad

Photo: Red Car Property Neighbor, June 5, 2020.

Yesterday evening, Corralitas Drive neighbors were disappointed to find the hastily constructed Red Car Property fence locked. The neighbor's 2-year-old son looks forward to the daily outings on the Red Car Property, as does the entire family.

For nearly 20 years, the Red Car Property owner has threatened to fence the entire property every time neighbors contact CD13 regarding brush clearance, dumping, homeless camps, joyriding, abandoned vehicles, general lawlessness, etc.  Considering the brush clearance was done early for what seems like the first time, we suspected a development application was pending.  We did not expect a fence.

There are currently no active applications or approvals for zone change or subdivision, and no building permit applications or approvals on file for the Red Car Property. No zone changes or subdivisions have been granted.

CD13 has requested additional information from City departments regarding neighbors' specific inquiries about easements, public safety and the adjacent DWP property fenced in this week at Riverside and Fletcher.

Follow us on Twitter @RedCarProperty for current updates and photos. 

Related: The Eastsider 

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Red Car Property: Fences Going Up

Photo: Red Car Property Neighbor, May 27, 2020.  

Neighbors want to know what is going on with the Red Car Property as fences like this one being built along side the public sidewalk (Corralitas Walk) adjacent to the 2 Freeway.  They seem to be fencing off the entire property. The new fence pictured above, at the 2 Freeway, will create a narrow, less than 10' wide chain link alley with chain link fence on both sides of Corralitas Walk between Corralitas Drive and Allesandro Way.  

Neighbors are very concerned about the public safety issues with such a long narrow passageway here, and it's not just about cars flying off the freeway.  We'll go more in depth on the public safety issues at a future date.

Please be assured we are trying to sort out what is really going on and we'll be back to posting here on the blog soon.  In the meantime, for more immediate news and photos of the fence follow us on Twitter @RedCarProperty


Friday, May 15, 2020

2 Freeway at Corralitas Drive: Luckily, Car Crash Did Not Ignite A Fire

Photo: Corralitas Neighbor, May 15, 2020, 1:34 AM.  "Must you crash outside my bedroom window? Must you and the police and tow guy yell to each other? Must you?"

Neighbors of the 2 Freeway between the 5 Freeway and the 2 Freeway Terminus at Glendale Blvd have heard many high speed crashes and seen the aftermath. Fortunately, this crash did not ignite the dry brush on the southbound 2 Freeway  adjacent to Corralitas Drive.

Request brush clearance or other maintenance issues on CalTrans property (on the freeway side of the fence) on the State's website:

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Riverside Drive: Attempted Rape Reported To LAPD, August 23, 2019

Photo: Google Street View.  A pedestrian tunnel crosses beneath Riverside Drive at Allesandro Elementay School.   

This weekend, an attempted rape in the 2200 block of Riverside Drive (Allesandro Elementary School)  showed up in the daily Crimemapping email.  I requested whatever details could be shared from our new LAPD Senior Lead Officer (SLO) for Silver Lake, Jesus Aispuro.  He responded with the following email: 

An Attempt Rape report was taken on August 23.  The incident occurred at 2:00pm.  An adult victim was walking in the tunnel, near the school, when she observed an unknown male suspect in the middle of the tunnel. As she walked by him,  the suspect blocked her path and grabbed one of her wrists and attempted to pull up her shirt.  The Victim slapped his hands away.  The suspect then unzipped his pants.  The victim then ran out of the tunnel and the suspect left the tunnel on the other side.  There was no one else inside the tunnel at the time of the incident and no kids were out in the area at the time.  They have assigned patrol units to monitor the tunnel and I will also go out there to monitor it as well.  There have not been any other incidents like this in the area.
Officer Jesus Aispuro
LAPD Northeast Division

If you are afraid to use the tunnel under Riverside Drive, DO NOT JAYWALK. A pedestrian was killed in 2014 in a hit & run incident in front of Allesandro Elementary.  Take the long way around and cross Riverside at the signal at Allesandro or Gilroy.  My understanding is the tunnel is only unlocked during school hours, but I have not confirmed this in years.

Through the years, neighbors have asked me about carrying pepper spray to defend themselves, but mostly, to defend their dogs from coyotes and pit bulls while walking.  Pepper spray is tricky and you may not point it in the right direction if panicked.  I recommend an inexpensive, pocket size air horn (many friends carry them when hiking and camping).  It's loud and ear piercing, breaks up fighting dogs and scares off coyotes.  It also gets the attention of anyone nearby.  

I say don't live in fear.  Take action: learn self defense techniques, know your neighbors and their contact info, don't walk with headphones, know the streets and public staircases in the neighborhood, install motion sensor lighting and locked mailboxes, adopt a dog or two (please don't adopt a pit bull if you have never handled one before).  If you are the victim of a crime, make a police report.  LAPD doesn't know there's a crime problem, if you don't report it. 

Editor's note: Since the onset of the LAPD Senior Lead Officer program (after the 1992 riots), whenever I've heard a rumor or seen a report of rape or other violent crime in the Red Car Property Neighborhood, I request info from our SLO.  I do not publish reports of domestic violence, which seems to be most of the very rare number of violent crimes reported to LAPD in our neighborhood. 

In more than 12 years of producing this blog, I can only think of a handful of violent incidents occurring in our neighborhood.  In 2012, a woman was murdered elsewhere and dumped near the 2 Freeway entrance across from Allesandro Elementary.  Five months later, another murder victim was found on Allesandro Way.  In 1996, a drug bust turned into such a large gun bust, the police shut down traffic on the 5 Freeway, Riverside Drive, Fletcher and locked down the entire neighborhood around the Red Car Property for hours.

Our neighborhood crime is primarily mail theft, car break-ins, dumping, graffiti vandalism, joyriding and a lot of stolen cars seem to get dumped here. We highlight the general lawlessness around the Red Car Property.  We'd much rather be posting photos of the urban wildlife and native plants around the Red Car Property Neighborhood.  While we've not updated the blog frequently in recent years, we continue posting on Twitter @RedCarProperty.

Useful Links:
LAPD contracts with Crimemapping for crime stats.
LAPD non-emergency phone: 1-877-ASK-LAPD

Saturday, April 27, 2019

2 Freeway: Car Crashes Onto Red Car Property From The 2 Freeway

All photos: Red Car Property neighbors, April 27, 2019.

Around 2:30 AM, Red Car Property neighbors were awakened by a horrible sounding crash on the 2 Freeway. A very expensive sports car crashed through the chain link fence and came to a stop at the base of a steep slope on the Red Car Property.  At least one neighbor called police when it appeared people took off after the neighbor shined a bright flashlight on them.

One Silver Ridge neighbor described the sound of the crash: a car's screeching tires on the southbound 2 Freeway, then a large crash followed by more squealing tires and an even larger traveling crash.  A Corralitas neighbor's doorbell camera recorded the same sequence of sound at 2:31 AM.
The photo above is a lighter version of the previous photo, shot around 3 AM. 

With no large trees that used to prevent drivers from crashing onto Corralitas and the Red Car Property, the driver crashed through the brush on the side of the 2 Freeway, down the slope, through the chain link fence, across the public sidewalk (Corralitas Walk) and onto the Red Car Property, stopping at the base of the steep slope at the south end of the Red Car Property.  

Neighbors were on alert for fire since brush clearance had not been done.  This is the same part of the property that burned in the 2016 Silver Lake Fire.
When the sun came up, the path of the crash was more clear.  The orange cones mark the section of chain link fence taken out by the car crashing through and across Corralitas Walk.  It stopped at the far right of the frame.  The tire tracks completing the circle to the left, show the path the tow truck took to reach the car.
The large gap in the trees along the southbound 2, just past the orange cones, is where CalTrans cut down all the trees, including a number of enormous Eucalyptus trees that previously kept cars from flying onto Corralitas Drive and the Red Car Property.  

CalTrans cut down all the trees, including recovering trees that were not dead, after the 2016 Silver Lake Fire.  As soon as CalTrans cut the trees down, neighbors began asking CalTrans for trees, a sound wall or even concrete K-rails because they were suddenly feeling exposed.  A few months after the trees were removed a car flew off the freeway and crashed horribly onto Corralitas Drive.  It was fortunate no pedestrians were injured in either crash.
By 4 AM the tow truck was loading the car now in the Corralitas cul-de-sac, adjacent to the Red Car Property.  A neighbor confirmed the crashed car was a brand new Lamborghini.  It still had dealer paper plates.  From the photos, it appears CHP was present.
After last week's crash, we asked CD13 to prioritize brush clearance on the Red Car Property and request CalTrans do their brush clearance too. A fire could have sparked with the hot engine resting on the dry grass. 

Car flies off 2 Freeway onto Corralitas Drive, 2016

All our car crash posts

Several neighbors from Silver Ridge Ave (directly above the Red Car Property) and Corralitas Drive contributed photos, video/audio recording, in addition to what they saw and heard to help create this post. 

This post was published May 7, 2019 and postdated to the incident date for reference.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Elysian Park: In Memoriam, Peter Lassen
1939 – 2018, Community Activist

Photo: Diane Edwardson, Red Tailed Hawk. January 14, 2013.

Friends will gather at the Grace Simons Lodge in Elysian Park tonight to honor the life and legacy of Peter “Pete” Lassen who passed away August 8, 2018.  

I am personally saddened by Pete’s passing as he was a mentor and friend for nearly 25 years.  I always looked up to Pete.  As a community activist, I learned so much from him and we always had a great time talking about things not related to whatever community issue was at hand.  He was charismatic, friendly and had a mellifluous deep voice.  He put family first.  Pete was an inspiration to so many.  Most of all, he was a good person.  

Weeks later, my hands are shaking as I write this and I still can’t adequately sum up the decades of friendship and activism. So I’ll just tell a couple of stories.

A few years ago, while sharing lunch at HOME Restaurant patio, on a beautiful winter day with blue skies and fluffy white clouds, over the din of Riverside Fletcher intersection and the 5 Freeway, while discussing a nearby development proposal, Pete suddenly exclaimed, “Whoa! A huge hawk just took off from that power line tower! Wait there’s another one!”  In the afternoons the updrafts created by the roads and topography makes it an ideal jumping off place for hawks to soar.  Naturally, the hawk led into a long discussion of our enormous hawks and other wildlife in our neighborhoods.  In the last ten years, we actually spent more time talking about other stuff than the issue at hand.

As fellow city planning geeks, we often talked about the built environment, topography, history, native landscapes and urban wildlife. Pete always looked at how the minutiae fit into the big picture, not just how it affected immediate neighbors.

Pete was willing to explain complex and esoteric issues to community members trying to genuinely understand the technical plans on boards at community scoping meetings and how it related to the neighborhood.  When neighbors were attending 2 Freeway Terminus meetings, I told them, find Pete, hang out behind him and you’ll learn what’s important. That’s what I did.  He later said “I thought there were a number of people from your neighborhood asking me questions, and asking good questions.”

When we were involved in the SR2 Freeway Terminus Redesign, I would call him up and say things like “Am I insane?  Or is this the first time sound walls appeared on a map or at all? In 16 years, they never even discussed sound walls anywhere other than the immediate terminus.” Pete’s response was “Yes, you are insane, and, no, those sound walls were not in any previous plan or discussion [prior to the Draft EIR].”  He knew the teasing didn’t bother me.  Decades earlier, I’d learned from Pete, the importance of the details on a proposed map even if they’re not mentioned in the written portion of a proposed plan.

I remember Pete from the first community meeting I ever attended for a development proposal on the Red Car Property in the early 1990s.  He was someone I often consulted, particularly with large complex issues in the community. As community activists, through countless community meetings, small meetings and lunches, we volunteered our time fighting in the community’s interest on the Silver Lake - Echo Park - Elysian Valley Community Plan, SR2 Freeway Terminus Redesign, Glendale Blvd Corridor Plan, Neighbors of Dodger Stadium, Red Car Property, Menlo Property, Semi Tropic Spiritualists’ Tract, just to name a few things affecting our immediate neighborhood.

In his death, Pete joins more of my mentors, Virginia Adams and Rey Dominguez of Elysian Valley, Alicia Brown of Solano Canyon and Judy Raskin of Echo Park.  Pete, and all of them, not only made our community a better place, they made Los Angeles and the world a better place.   

Rest in peace Pete.
Diane Edwardson  

Read more about Pete Lassen: The Eastsider

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Red Car Property: Not A Park, Follow Us On Twitter

Photo: Diane Edwardson, November 17,  2017.  Not a park, it just looks like one.

We apologize to our readers.  Due to other commitments, we're slow to publish to the blog lately.  We hope to be publishing regularly soon.  For timely updates, follow us on Twitter: @RedCarProperty

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Corralitas Drive: Apocalyptic Dawn, Christmas Day

Photo: Corralitas Neighbor, December 25, 2017, 6:15 AM.  In case you missed it, it was ether a spectacular sunrise on Christmas Day or the dawning of Armageddon.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Corralitas Drive: Bah Humbug

Photo: Gary Vlahakis, December 22, 2017.  Looks like the Grinch is wreaking havoc in Santa's Winter Wonderland this year. 

Happy Holidaze!

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Red Car Property Lot C: More Uncovered Truckloads Of Dirt, Bulldozer Delivery

Photo: Red Car Property Neighbor, December 22, 2017.  At 7 AM yesterday, more uncovered truckloads of dirt began arriving for the Riverside Drive construction site, using the Red Car Property north of India Street.  

The motorhome, parked on the Red Car Property with someone living in it, has become a permanent feature of the site since October.

The Red Car Property is not a park, nor is it a city street right of way.  Silver Lake Court is west of the Red Car Property.  This is Lot C north of India Street.  

More than a year ago the architect for the adjacent Riverside Drive 13-unit development told me they would not be using the Red Car Property for deliveries, hauling nor storage of vehicles or equipment or for access to their site. 

They fail to make any attempt to control fugitive dust while driving on the Red Car Property.  That shouldn't be surprising since they also make no attempt at covering the dirt in the truck beds as required by state and city codes.  No haul route was established for the site. The route to this part of the Red Car Property involves hairpin turns on Substandard Hillside Streets that go past the driveways for Allesandro Elementary School. 
Photo: Red Car Property Neighbor, December 22, 2017.  A mini bulldozer arrived early Friday morning too.