Category Archives: NEWS

FIRE in Debs Park, Knocked Down in 78 minutes!

3pm, view of the fire at in Debs Park from Avenue 51, by Occidental college

3pm, view of the fire at in Debs Park from Avenue 51, by Occidental college

At approximately 2:3pm on Sunday July 5th, the LAPD got a call, “Fire in Debs Park!” The fire was above Griffin Avenue between Avenue 52 and Montecito Drive, on the hill north of the Audubon Center.

Units BC2, E16, and E47 were initially dispatched, but eventually engines from battalions 42, 15 and 29 were on the hill with water hoses while helicopters 1, 4 and 5 (of the seven available), repeatedly dropped water on the fire. Several additional engines lined Griffin Avenue at the ready if needed.

LAFD Helicopter 5 drops water over smoking trees

LAFD Helicopter 5 drops water over smoking trees

In addition to the Los Angeles City and County Fire trucks, several Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members from Montecito Heights and West LA were on the scene. The CERT teams are trained in emergency response and are able to assist with traffic control, communications, first aid, and general support to the Fire Fighters. In this instance passing out water bottles was enough.

Several neighbors stood watching and talking about “their back yard.” A family strolling by with ice cream was not worried about the fire spreading towards their home. As one young lady put it, “The fire department has it covered.”

Another neighbor, who hikes in the park on a daily basis, pointed out that since the homeless encampments have been rousted from the Arroyo, she has seen encampments in Debs Park. She has seen some brush clearance around their camps. While she considers the encampments along the Arroyo to be unsightly, she agrees it was safer to have them there than having camps in Debs Park.

A homeless gentleman reported carrying twenty seven gallons of water into the park on Saturday night in case of fire due to fire works. “I don’t want all of my belongings to burn.” He also reported several “kids” in the park setting off firecrackers and cherry bombs. He shook his head, exclaiming, “I had better sense than that by the time I was 12.” He also thought there should be legal action if the fireworks prove to be the cause of the fire.

The Command Post

The Command Post

By 3:10 the fire was surrounded and contained at 2 acres, about the size of a similar blaze last month at Occidental College. A neighbor who lives on Griffin sends Kudos to the LA Fire Department for shear speed of response, “It’s amazing how quickly they got here.” According to the command center, the winds being fairly low at the time was very lucky, a strong wind could have turned this into a major incident.

The fire was declared officially knocked down at 3:48pm, although the helicopters made a couple of water drops on the remaining smoldering area.

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A line of fire fighters with shovels, rakes and Pulaskis (a hatchet/hoe combination) finish the job by going over the scorched area one square foot at a time, ensuring the elimination of hot spots

A line of fire fighters with shovels, rakes and Pulaskis (a hatchet/hoe combination) finish the job by going over the scorched area one square foot at a time, ensuring the elimination of hot spots

Boulevard Sentinel July Print Edition

Click here for 07-2015 Print Edition

Obama Comes to Town... WTF?

Obama Comes to Town… WTF?

Police Surround Home of Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council Leader

(UPDATED AT 1:30 P.M. SUNDAY JUNE 28)

Eagle Rock CA- June 27, 2015 – 2:47 p.m. (updated at 3:10)
L.A. Police have blocked off the streets around the 2100 block of Laverna Avenue in Eagle Rock, where a woman with a gun has allegedly barricaded herself in.

Sources near the scene report the woman who barricaded herself in, is the girlfriend of former ERNC leader Peter Hilton.

He said she pulled a gun on him after getting in an argument earlier this afternoon. He reportedly grabbed his 9 year old son and ran out of the house and called police.

 

Fire and police officials have Laverna Avenue and nearby streets blocked off while negotiators try to get a woman with a gun to give herself up.

Fire and police officials have Laverna Avenue and nearby streets blocked off while negotiators try to get a woman with a gun to give herself up. (photo by Chili Laverna)

He recently took up with a new girlfriend after splitting from his wife Rita, several months ago.  The special weapons and tactics team (SWAT) has reportedly been called out, while officers are trying to negotiate with the woman. This could turn out bad, but I sure hope it doesn’t.

Peter Hilton was one of the most vocal members in 2012 as the council went after Medical Marijuana Shops with a vengeance. in the Stay tuned for more.

UPDATE:
Ivy, the girlfriend of Peter Hilton who threatened him with a gun surrendered and was taken into custody at about 5:30 p.m. on Saturday afternoon. No injuries were reported.

The suspect, (Ivy) surrendered and was taken into custody at about 5:30.

The suspect, (Ivy) surrendered and was taken into custody at about 5:30. (photo by Chili Laverna)

 

How About Remove a Freeway That’s There Now?

Protest a New Freeway Tunnel?
How About Remove a Freeway That’s There Now?

Beyond 710 Coalition Makes Their Case

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On Thursday June 18, the office of Councilman Jose Huizar put on a forum to inform El Sereno residents of a proposal regarding the 710 freeway issue.

Most of you are aware of South Pasadena’s 50 year old fight to stop the 710 freeway through their fair city. Many of you know that Northeast L.A. was also involved lately in fighting possible alternatives that would connect the 710 through Eagle Rock, Mt. Washington, Highland Park and Glassell Park.
However, don’t be ashamed if you hadn’t hear about a movement underway not only to stop the completion of the 710 (Long Beach) freeway, but to remove the two ends of the freeway that had already been built some 50 years ago.
Appropriately named, “Beyond the 710 Coalition,” it is an effort started through a consortium of five San Gabriel Valley cities, Pasadena, La Cañada, Glendale, Sierra Madre and South Pasadena.
You can probably include at least a 1/15 portion of the City of L.A. in that column as well, as the ideas displayed in yesterday’s El Sereno work shop (which was organized by the office of Jose Huizar) fit right in with Huizar’s recent embrace of the complete streets movement (bike lanes, pedestrian friendly, etc.).
Paul Moore, of Nelson-Nygaard, made his presentation regarding CalTrans’ recent draft environmental impact report, conceived after literally years of outreach and planning, as they were looking for “710 Alternatives.” (I must add that the presentation was completely one sided, there was no one there in any official capacity to counter the claims of Nelson-Nygaard, or their claimed facts or figures.)
The five alternatives studied and brought before the affected communities were pared down to just two, which are addressed in the report. The first is a 710 tunnel, connecting both stubs of the 710 freeway, Pasadena at the North end and El Sereno at the South. It would tunnel underneath El Sereno and South Pasadena to connect the two “stubs” of the 710 freeway.
The other is to tunnel under with a light rail subway, connecting to the Goldline, probably near the Huntington Hospital, and continuing South all the way to the other end of the Gold Line in East L.A.
None of these options seem satisfactory to the coalition, or “No on 710″ advocates, and today, Mr. Moore pulled apart CalTrans’ plans brick by brick.
First, he identified that the extra trips and traffic that would be generated by the tunnel would increase greenhouse gas emissions. Then, he argued that the connecting of that freeway would probably relieve congestion on some streets but make it worse on others. Finally, he argued that “If you build it, they will come!” Saying that building more road capacity only serves to attract more traffic, and after a short period of time, the road will be congested just the same.
He drove his points home by claiming that 6 billion, if spent this way, would not improve traffic, and indeed, would only serve to worsen traffic as well as the quality of life. He said that spending 6 billion in a way that gives people an incentive for getting out of their cars, like buying metro passes for all students, would actually improve traffic in a measurable way (As well as training a new generation to get around town with the use of the automobile).
At this point, I think I should mention that his company, Nelson Nygaard, was founded by two former transportation managers from the city of San Francisco, which, incidentally, is where Seleta Reynolds, the recently appointed head of the Los Angeles City department of transportation, is from. (Not a Portlandia reunion, but close enough!)
His next part of the meeting was showing a vision for Mission Road that includes a road diet and bike lanes, and making Huntington into a “Grand Boulevard.”
However, what came next was a real shock. We’ve heard about the “no build” alternative that Caltrans had to consider along with the other ideas of a tunnel, subway and bus route. But this went one step further in the opposite direction. Brand new was the idea of “un-freewaying” those end stubs at either end of the 710 gap (El Sereno and Pasadena).Artist rendering of proposed park for North end of El Sereno 710 stub.

Artist rendering of proposed park for North end of El Sereno 710 stub.

 

He showed artist renderings of narrowing the road and eliminating those multi-lane end stubs altogether. Proposed was taking back all that real estate and turning it into a narrow, meandering, street. Included were bike paths, green space, more campus for Cal State, and possibility of bringing back El Sereno’s Arroyo Rosa, a river that was taken when that part of the freeway was built decades ago.

Artist rendering of South end of El Sereno 710 stub.

Artist rendering of South end of El Sereno 710 stub.

As this issue has been brewing as far back as when the freeway construction began, it will be years before any visible changes will start to take effect, but NOW is the time for people to be heard, no matter which way you feel!
More at http://www.beyondthe710.org/

(This story was updated to correct that the tunnel would NOT go under Alhambra, however, Alhambra has been pushing for it because they’d like to get rid of all that traffic that comes off the freeway and clogs Fremont Avenue in their city.)

 

710 Freeway Extension Meeting – Tonight 6 pm

A meeting will be held tonight to announce a proposal to extend the 710 Freeway at the El Sereno Senior Center in El Sereno. The address is 4818 Klamath Place, which is located just East of Eastern Avenue. Northeast Residents can get there by taking Monterey Road to Huntington, then go East to Eastern Avenue, where you make right and go south about 8 blocks to Klamath. You will see park on the right before you turn left and go to 4818.

Teen CSI Camp in Altadena

Community: Teen CSI Camp in Altadena July 6th – 10th, only a few spots left.

Dear Fletcher Figueroa,

Altadena Sheriff Station sponsor’s a Teen Crime Scene Investigation Camp (CSI Camp) for area youth. The CSI Camp is a weeklong camp which give kids the opportunity to learn about crime scene investigations in a realistic setting. This camp is for young people age 11-15 years old. The camp is organized by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Juvenile Intervention Team from the Altadena Sheriff Station. The CSI Camp will be July 6th- 10th, 2015 from 8:30am- 12:00pm at Loma Alta Park. The cost is $75.00. For additional information contact Deputy Scott Rule at (626) 798-1131 ext. 2117 or by email at sarule@lasd.org

For full details, view this message on the web.

LA River Follies Starring Jose Huizar

A little Ocean’s Eleven, a little Starsky & Hutch, a little Repo Man and A LOT of parody in Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell’s Season 2 of LA River Follies “starring” O’Farrell and Councilmember Huizar as partners in solving crime (or finding LA Sanitation Director Enrique Saldivar). This fun short features Council President Herb Wesson in a tour de force performance worthy of an Oscar (or at least a certificate of recognition from the City of LA). All in good fun, the film features the LA River prominently and was presented in City Council during LA River Day.

14th Annual Strike Out AIDS at Dodger Stadium

The Wall Las Memorias Project

The Wall Las Memorias Project’s 14th Annual Strike Out AIDS at Dodger Stadium is just around the corner– have you bought your tickets yet?!

Buy your tickets TODAY & join us for an evening of Dodger baseball as we help bring awareness to AIDS in our community. This year we have quite the line up for you including an amazing
pre-game ceremony, HIV & Hep-C resource booth, formation of Human AIDS Ribbon on the field*, special event seating including an all-you-can-eat section,
Dodger Friday fireworks & so much more!

WHEN: Friday, July 3rd
PRE-GAME CEREMONY: 6:30 PM
LA DODGERS VS. NY METS GAME: 7:10 PM
PLACE: Dodger Stadium, Elysian Park

TICKET SALES & SPECIAL OFFERS: Click here!
L. Fld. Pavilion Seating $28
R. Fld. Pavilion All-You-Can-Eat Seating $43

*For your chance to experience Strike Out AIDS on another level, literally, contact TWLMP staff at david.flores@twlmp.org and take part in the creation of the Human AIDS Ribbon on the field during the pre-game ceremony– ALL TICKET HOLDERS ARE WELCOMED!

The Wall Las Memorias Project
http://www.thewalllasmemorias.org/

City Council Extends Hours on Eagle Rock’s Colorado Blvd.

City Council Extends Hours on Eagle Rock’s Colorado Blvd.

In final vote, Council votes 13-0 to support legislation introduced by Councilmember Huizar to amend Colorado Blvd Specific plan so Eagle Rock businesses can compete with nearby cities

(LOS ANGELES) June 10, 2015 – The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously today to support legislation proposed by Councilmember José Huizar to formally expand business hours on Colorado Boulevard in Eagle Rock by amending the guidelines of the Colorado Boulevard Specific Plan, which has been in place since 1992.

While Colorado Boulevard has a growing reputation as a food, nightlife and retail destination, businesses there were at a disadvantage compared to nearby cities, such as Pasadena and Glendale, since business hours were previously restricted under the Specific Plan from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Councilmember Huizar introduced the legislation with the support of local community organizations, such as the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council, the Eagle Rock Chamber of Commerce, The Eagle Rock Association (TERA) and the Colorado Boulevard Design Review Board.

“By lifting these hour restrictions, we are allowing local businesses on Colorado Boulevard to compete directly with nearby cities and keeping business, customers and tax dollars in Eagle Rock and the City of Los Angeles,” said Councilmember Huizar. “I want to thank all the local stakeholders and organizations behind this community-driven amendment. Despite the hour restrictions, the corridor is made up of hard-working business owners who have turned Colorado Boulevard into one of Los Angeles’ premier commercial-retail destinations and this vote will support them in their efforts.”

The Colorado Blvd Specific Plan was originally authored and adopted more than 20 years ago. Since that time, the corridor has undergone tremendous growth to the benefit of the Eagle Rock Community. The plan has been an effective tool in managing the look and preserving the pedestrian-friendly feel of the neighborhood, but, like all community plans, needs to be updated in an evolving neighborhood.

With its small-town feel in a large metropolis, the community first established more than 100 years ago, is one of Los Angeles most popular neighborhoods. Eagle Rock was recently named the second hottest (real estate market) in the entire nation by Redfin real estate website.

In September, Councilmember Huizar worked with the Bureau of Sanitation and Northeast organizations to initiate the largest tree planting in more than 50 years, with 272 trees planted along Colorado and Eagle Rock boulevards in Eagle Rock and Figueroa Street and York Boulevard in Highland Park. Through his Clean Communities Initiative and a partnership with the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council and Sanitation, 43 Automated Litter Bins (ALBs) were installed across Eagle Rock, including Colorado Boulevard.

And in 2013 and 2014, Councilmember Huizar teamed up with LADOT and the Eagle Rock community through the Take Back the Boulevard initiative to provide a series of “Complete Street” upgrades to promote business and make the street safer and more inviting to pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers. The many improvements include two new crosswalks at El Rio Avenue and Glen Iris Avenue, new medians to accommodate the crosswalks, plus the first three Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon pedestrian crosswalks in the City’s metro area. Other improvements included speed feedback signs on either side of Dahlia Heights Elementary, which studies have shown help reduce traffic speed, along with the controversial buffered bike lanes which have snarled traffic and divided the community when traffic lanes were removed over the objections of half the community.

JUNE ‘015 Print Edition is on the Street!

Click here or below for June 2015 Print Edition

blvdsent06-2015p01

Support Arroyo Seco Canyon Project at the Pasadena City Council – June 1, 2015

The Arroyo Seco Canyon Project

A Sustainable, Environmentally Sensitive Drought Solution

Show Your Support at the Pasadena City Council – June 1, 2015

This Monday evening the Arroyo Seco Canyon Project will be presented to the Pasadena City Council for final approval. We urge you to come to the City Council meeting to speak in favor of the project, to let the council know that there is broad commuity support for sustainable water solutions.

The Arroyo Seco Foundation and the Pasadena Department of Water and Power have been working together for more than four years to shore up local water supplies while protecting the environment. At its June 1st meeting, the Pasadena City Council will consider the Conditional Use Permit and Mitigated Negative Declaration that have been carefully drafted by technial experts to evaluate the impacts of the project. The Arroyo Canyon project itself has gone through several stages of public review and comment and has incorporated many modifications in response to stakeholder concerns. Monday night the City Council will decide whether the process and the documents created have followed the correct procedures and if the Arroyo Canyon project should move forward.

We ask you to stand up and tell the council that you support the project because of the many benefits it will provide.

We have put together a short list of some of the key benefits. Please use this as a starting point to discuss the points with which you are most comfortable. Lend your insights to the discussion and add other points that are important to you.

Come to the Council Meeting

Monday, June 1, 6:30 pm
Council Chamber, Pasadena City Hall
100 North Garfield Avenue, Room S249
Pasadena, CA 91101

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at info@arroyoseco.org

Overview:

The Arroyo Seco Canyon Project is a model water project, an innovative program to improve water resources, habitat, and recreational opportunities in the region between Hahamongna Watershed Park in Pasadena and the Angeles National Forest. Projects like this that contribute to long-term sustainability become all the more vital as our region faces severe drought conditions. This holistic approach to water projects integrates water supply reliability, groundwater recharge, water quality improvements, better conditions for fish and aquatic habitat, and improved recreational opportunities with extensive public education. The Arroyo Seco Canyon Project will inform future improvements and demonstrate the efficacy and wisdom of planning for multiple outcomes.

Major Benefits:

  1. Improving fish conditions and passage: The removal of outdated water structures at the northernmost project area will allow for naturalization of the stream and improve aquatic connectivity. This facility will no longer be necessary thanks to improvements at the intake and spreading basins. The intake facility where Pasadena takes water from the Arroyo Seco for municipal water service will also be upgraded. Here a small inflatable dam will make the facility far more environmentally friendly by allowing for aquatic wildlife migration and natural stream hydrology.
  2. Increasing local water supply: The improved water intake facility will better manage sediments and improve the ability to reliably supply drinking water to Pasadena residents by replenishing local groundwater. The new system will be more efficient, allowing Pasadena to take full advantage of its water rights by better utilizing high flows when they are available. Pairing this with expanded percolations basins further south will allow Pasadena to recharge the Raymond Basin with an average additional 1000 acre feet each year, 60% of which Pasadena will be able to withdraw for water supplies.
  3. Enhancing water quality: A new restroom will be built next to the new parking area at the entry to the popular Gabrielino Trail at the top of the Hahamongna basin. This restroom will decrease human bacteria in canyon water flows and enhance the recreational experience in the canyon.
  4. Restoring aquatic and riparian habitat: The northernmost part of the project area will be restored with ecologically appropriate woodland, plant, and riverine habitat to encourage birds, insects, butterflies, fish, and frogs to thrive. Invasive species will be removed here and around the intake facility.
  5. Improving recreational opportunities: Installation of interpretive signs, picnic tables, a drinking fountain, and a horse trough will enhance conditions for hikers and other recreational users. A new public parking lot with under 100 spaces will include native plantings and stormwater management through permeable surfaces and reduced runoff.
  6. Community nursery for native plants: The native plants for the restoration and parking areas are being grown by volunteers at a nursery in Hahamongna Watershed Park, using seeds and other plant material from the project sites. Volunteers are learning about the methods and benefits of growing locally adapted native plants and becoming skilled and knowledgeable citizens with a serious stake in the local environment.

Faced with a severe drought, Pasadena and Southern California need to adopt integrated , environmentally-sensitive water programs like the Arroyo Seco Canyon Project for a sustainable future.

For more information

All relevant documents, including the Mitigated Negative Declaration and Conditional Use Permit, can be found on these sites.

Arroyo Seco Foundation project page   |   City of Pasadena project page

The official City Council agenda report will be posted this afternoon (Thursday) on this site:

City Council Agenda Report

If you have questions, please contact us at info@arroyoseco.org

Taste of Eagle Rock

Come join the party!  The Collaborative Eagle Rock Beautiful invites all of our friends to the Taste of Eagle Rock, a neighborhood party with great music and food & beverages donated by our favorite establishments around town. This event will be fun for adults and kids alike!   Want to know more? Or purchase tickets in advance (saving you both time and money)? See www.cerb.us.  We thank you for your continued support, as we continue paying off the Eagle Rock Canyon Trail, as well as greening up our public spaces

tassteof

 

Elliott Caine Quartet – May 30th at Colombo’s

Fellow Earthlings……

                             
                               The Elliott Caine Quartet (EC-trumpet, Gary Blumer-piano, Bill Markus-bass, Kenny Elliott-drums) performs at Colombo’s Italian Steakhouse & Jazz Club, 1833 Colorado Blvd., LA (Eagle Rock) 90041, on Saturday, May, 30, from 9:30pm until Midnight.  For more information/reservations, please phone 323-254-9138.

Upcoming: The Elliott Caine Quintet will perform at York Park (corner Ave 50 & York Blvd) on Saturday, June 6, at 3pm as part of the annual Lummis Festival.
                     

                  The Elliott Caine Sextet will perform at The E Spot Lounge (Sheila E’s new club), upstairs at Vitello’s, 4349 Tujunga Ave, Studio City 91604, on Thursday, June 11, starting at 8pm.


CD14 Utility Box Art Expands to Highland Park

untilityboxart

May 2015 Issue is on the Street

Click below to read May 2015 Print Edition

May 2015 Boulevard Sentinel

 

The Elliott Caine Quintet at The South Pasadena Eclectic Music Festival

The Elliott Caine Quintet (EC-trumpet, Javier Vergara-tenor sax, Peter Smith-piano, Trevor Ware-bass, Kenny Elliott-drums) performs at The South Pasadena Eclectic Music Festival & Art Walk on Saturday, May 2.  The quintet will be headlining at The South Pasadena Public Library, 1100 Oxley St., South Pasadena 91030, performing for one set at 9:00pm        The quintet will perform in the Community Room (aka “The Carnegie Stage”), facing El Centro Street.         No cover charge.