(1) Via Repaving, (2) Tree Down, (3) ADA Playground
Via de la Paz Is Being Repaved
For more than two weeks “No Parking” signs (6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.) were placed the length of Via de la Paz, and street paving vehicles were parked near the Via de las Olas bluffs, but nothing happened.
Since many of the elderly members of the Palisades-Malibu YMCA park along Via de la Paz, the Y’s Marla Ricketts was concerned.
As Director of Healthy Lifestyles and Membership, Ricketts contacted Community Council President George Wolfberg and Councilman Bonin’s Field Deputy Lisa Cahill on July 30.
Wolfberg contacted L.A. Department of Transportation Assistant General Manager Tim Fremaux, who wrote: “We’re not seeing anything in our records as far as any recent changes to parking restrictions, specifically for the 800 block of Via de la Paz. Can you clarify exactly what sort of restrictions you are seeing and where?”
Cahill wrote: “It is likely due to resurfacing in the area, but I have cc’d Alex (Damla) in our office and he can let you know for sure.”
Circling the News contacted Adel Hagekhalil, the Director of the Bureau of Street Services, the same day. He responded immediately: “Thanks for bringing this to my attention. Let me check.”
On July 31, LADOT activity was finally underway. The street pavement was being “scraped” so that resurfacing could take place.
YMCA Executive Director Jim Kirtley immediately sent an email to Hagekhalil: “On behalf of the Palisades YMCA, staff team and its members we would like to extend our thanks to you for helping with the parking situation on Via de la Paz. We are grateful for your quick response to our community’s need. If there is any way we can assist you in the future please don’t hesitate to reach out.”
Giant Eucalyptus Chopped Down
One of the largest and oldest trees at the Recreation Center was chopped down on July 31.
Initially, the owners of 825 Alma Real, whose property backs up on the park, had contacted Rec and Parks Forestry Supervisor II Steve Dunlap about the two blue gum eucalyptus trees that border their property, explaining that they needed extensive trimming.
Dunlap had the trees inspected and one of them was posted to be cut down. Trimming wouldn’t suffice.
The City official explained in a July 15 email: “The posted tree was inspected at the same time as the other tree and was found to have extensive decay and rot around the root crown, the part of the tree that meets the soil. There were also fruiting bodies fungal growths on and around the tree. My tree risk inspector found that the defects noticed on this tree were beyond our safety and hazardous tree standards and that for public safety the tree has to be removed before it fails and falls on the picnic tables. Eucalyptus have poor root systems and any decay or defects triggers immediate action to rectify the hazardous situation.”
ADA Accessible Playground at the Park
The Pacific Palisades Rec Center playground is not ADA accessible. At its July 17 meeting, the Park Advisory Board was asked by Circling the News if they had plans to work on a new playground. We were told by PAB member Bob Harter, who received a Citizen of the Year award for his work on the Veterans’ Gardens/Bocce Courts that since this playground was grandfathered in, ADA was not necessary.