Thursday, June 10, 2010

Menlo Property: Business As Usual

Photo: Diane Edwardson, June 10, 2010. Now that the Menlo Property has been approved for 120 units, we'll see how quickly it becomes a dumping ground again. (Click on photo to enlarge.)

Money talks. Lots of big name consultants helped convicted slumlord, Sam Menlo & Century Quality Management defeat the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy's (SMMC) appeal of City Planning's approval of 120 condo units on the Menlo Property.

Last night, many community members spoke in support of the SMMC appeal for a trail easement on the Menlo Property per the Community Plan. Three of the five East Los Angeles Planning Commission members (Lopez, Nagao, Angulo) voted to deny the SMMC's appeal. The other two commissioners took off before our hearing began.

The decision came after City Planning Director Gail Goldberg extolled the virtues and the sanctity of Community Plans to the commission. She too left before our agenda item came up.

Photo: Diane Edwardson, June 10, 2010. Interesting, how this graffiti showed up just upslope of the dumping this morning. It was not there yesterday. (Click on photo to enlarge.)

Keep in mind, Menlo was once approved to build 93 units and failed to build on the property. Menlo allowed the property to become the biggest nuisance property in Silver Lake. So, many remain skeptical we'll see anything built there, anytime soon.

If they do break ground, we can look forward to 212+ days of grading, as they dig out the entire hillside to build even more retaining walls for the 120 condos. That is, if they don't abandon the project, as has happened on this site in the 1980s.

The Red Car Property has a trail the community has used for decades. CD13 has expressed continued support for a trail on the Red Car Property, between the 2 Freeway and Fletcher, as a vital link to the LA River.