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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Here's an idea: Why not use parkland for parks?

The city's Recreation and Parks Department owns more than 25 acres of river front property on the north end of Atwater Village. That property, which sits across the Los Angeles River from Griffith Park is not used as parkland, however. Instead, the department uses it mainly for storage, employee parking and maintenance yards. Why not open this land up to the public? That's the idea behind ongoing efforts to create what The City Project Blog says could be the next great urban park, an extension of Griffith Park:

"Is it a pipe dream? No. It’s what happens when the community, through its representatives on the Griffith Park Draft Master Plan Working Group, recognizes that by combining North Atwater Park, the North Atwater Park Stream Restoration site an a significant portion of Central Service Yard, the public’s enjoyment of Griffith Park can be expanded and multiplied, without the prohibitively expensive purchase of new parkland.

At the core of this opportunity is the discovery that Central Service Yard (CSY) in North Atwater Village is dedicated public parkland. An analysis of maps and records by the Recreation and Parks Department’s Real Estate Division found, in the Fall of 2006, that this choice riverfront parcel contiguous to North Atwater Park is not only parkland, but is part of Colonel Griffith’s original rancho grant. As a result, in January 2007, the Griffith Park Draft Master Plan Working Group discussed, approved and added to their rewrite of the Griffith Park Master Plan, language proposing that as much as possible of CSY’s 27.55 riverfront acres now inhabited by the Department’s Central Service Yard be returned to public park use."

Photo from The City Project website.

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