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Monday, May 22, 2017

How safe will Echo Park Lake be after it reopens?

By Tony Cella

With less than two weeks to go before Echo Park Lake reopens to the public, the refilled lake and rebuilt park look pristine behind a chain link fence covered with a green screen. But some residents have expressed concern about safety in and around the park once that fence comes down and the lake reopens, attracting throngs of visitors.

Just as the residents of Echo Park are excited about  the reopening of the lake on June 15, “so are the homeless and camper people,” said Senior Lead Officer Louis Ford at a recent meeting of the Greater Echo Park Elysian Neighborhood Council, which had asked for extra police patrols around the park. Ford’s comment was in reference to the large number of homeless who have lived in campers and other vehicles parked around the perimeter of the lake before it was closed to the public during construction.

Officer Ford said the Rampart Division was considering deploying two officers at the lake in the morning and two officers  in the evening on overtime “cash detail” to bolster security and ensure 24-hour monitoring. But a lack of funds scuttled that plan.

“To be honest, we can’t man it,” said Ford.

City staff is responsible for cleaning up tagging and graffiti inside the park but no extra funds have been allocated for the upkeep of Echo Park Lake once it reopens above and beyond what it received before it closed, a Recreation and Parks Department official told The Eastsider earlier this year.

Recreation and Parks had little to say on the matter of park security. Spokesperson Andrea Epstein said the LAPD Security Services Division maintained the park and deferred all questions to the police. When asked if there had been communication with the city’s main law enforcement agency about the park’s security, Epstein said, “They’re aware its reopening.”

“If there’s a call inside the park, we’ll go there,” said LAPD spokesman Norma Eisenman .



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90 comments

  1. Citizens will have to unite to keep the new park and lake in good condition. We have to make the call, literally speaking people, We the People have to make that call.

    It will be tagged up and defaced soon enough, trash will appear, plants may be stolen — if you’re unaware of this in town, wake up and smell the freshly empty hole in your garden — and I would the north end market doesn’t regain a foothold.

    Make the call, patrols will increase. It’s all we can do as citizens and residents of the central city.

  2. Great that they could spend all the money to remodel it, but then nothing to for upkeep? Lousy plan again L.A.!

  3. I never knew that being homeless was a crime.

    • Being homeless is not a crime, but the disorder and dysfunction of the past won’t be tolerated.

    • hey you would know if you participateed in the meetings like I did…all of a sudden Jonney come lately wants to complain. This is what happens when you let others do what what you should be doing in the first place, civic participation is what that is called. if you and everone complaing did something about it there would be no need to have city council members and all these useless tools wasteing our money and cutting kids education.

      when they did this in 1984 it cost only 1million dollars to do, again the people then werent educated to know what the value of a clean park is, and now into the present future it is costing us more to repair because the same uneducated people from that period, reproduced and have created another generation that dont care about anything and our city officials can get away with taxing the stupid and makeing their money every single time.

      when there is more stupid peoplen not doing anything, everyone loses. I wonder how many of you voted for Eric…?

  4. Didn’t the remodel come in millions under budget (http://www.echoparknow.com/2013/05/27/five-awesome-things-about-the-new-echo-park-lake/)? Why not use the rest for upkeep?

    • Nine Double Oh 2 Sixxxer

      I was just thinking the same thing!!!

    • Ah no it didn’t…Actually it cost us $89 million to be exact. if you beleive what is printed and owned then you my friend are very blind. if you would have been at the meetings, you would know that it actually cost us more and will cost more into the future when this lake goes to shit because they have no maintance funds to support it. I must have been the only one at the meetings…

  5. Oh no!!! Not the homeless?!…camper people? Did you promote them to people?
    SAD FACE

  6. All the fear-mongering in reference to the homeless and “camper people” is disgusting. Everyone is excited about the re-opening of this PUBLIC space.

    • Yes its a public space, but we dont have to put up with people shitting and pissing in the park as well as tagging it up.

      • hey if your so passionate about it being clean, I would l love at the opprtunity to see you actually walk up to any of these taggers and shitters and pissers and see what you do.

        • Local would “love at the opprtunity [sic]”

          Local,
          Maybe you could get a friend or loved one to type out your thoughts for you. That way we could understand what on earth you’re trying to express. Just trying to be helpful. Cheers.

        • I agree with sane person. Local, if everything you are saying is true about this park then you are completely destroying a message which we all need to hear. Calm down, and instead of calling everyone stupid lay out your case for what you are saying so that we can do our own research of what you are suggesting. You are not the only non-sheep. Your not in traffic, this is a community board show some respect to your neighbors.

    • It’s not easy to have a discussion about the homeless without one side or the other being vilified. You can’t lump all homeless into one category, it’s not that cut and dry. I live in downtown LA and I’ve met a lot of really cool homeless people and many who are working to change their situation. But there’s another segment of that population who poop at will, wherever, whenever. Who fight, drink, vomit, and do whatever they want. Who don’t do anything to even try to change their circumstances. It’s part of that segment’s problems – substance abuse and serious mental health issues. You only need to look at downtown’s parks and sidewalks to see this. Who wants to sit in the grass where someone just let it fly? Just yesterday I saw a guy pee on a building and then proceed to wipe the urine off the wall and onto himself. That was just one instance – you see this stuff everyday.

      I won’t vilify the homeless, but the people who think they’re all just normal healthy people without a home aren’t based in reality either. Grand Park has private security and the issues there are nominal. Too bad EP lake can’t do the same thing.

  7. Just because it is a public space doesn’t mean we should let it go to hell(conclusion jumpers…I am not attacking the homeless). People want a nice park to go to to feel safe is all that people are saying. That’s what the taxpayers put their money towards.

    I find it crazy that they couldn’t have alotted at least $1 million of that money for two full time security guards. You could pay them $50k/year for at least 5 years you’d think.

  8. I agree, if the residents are that concerned they should band together and build a neighborhood watch team and take control of their local park to maintain its beauty and keep it safe.

  9. What about gang members? Are they going to put a special assigned gang unit for these exp gangsters that run the park? They are and always will run the park!

    • Gang members only run the park for the other hood rats that notice them. Before the park closed I went everyday and they definitely did not run me or my experience. I find it interesting that those who have nothing fight so hard to protect their nothing. A better idea is to create something of yourself, making your life so busy that squandering your life away sitting on a stoop claiming something that is not even yours too inconvenient for your schedule . From where I sit, this appears to be bottom feeders devouring other bottom feeders. Meanwhile, others in the community who don’t live in the dregs of society barely notice their pathetic existence of nothingness. One of the best attributes of this cycle of benign ignorance of this particular sect of our community is not only barely a distraction in most of our lives it also self-cleansing.

      • you know if you actually sounded out each word before you typed it in you probably would of cought yourself sounding as stupid as what you just wrote right now…. you must have just moved in like 2 weeks ago and know nothing about the community, as an echo park native and 2 generation in echo park you definately dont know WTF you are talking about.

        BTW how is your watering the tree over in echo park and Sunset going for you?

        • Ehhh, bottom feeder…

          • Doesn’t change anything you wrote above honey. if you want to make the point the less said the smarter you sound, Hence this above comment.

            glad to see your sounding out your words… Bim-bo. you must be female.

          • Dear Local,

            You may want to consult a dictionary, check your grammar and learn to use punctuation if you are trying to make a point. Right now, you’re the one who seems stupid.

            “You must be female.” Please. Stop trolling. You must be an idiot.

          • @Local

            “so you must be female” …so all females are dumb in your eyes? Please explain yourself you sexist idiot.

          • @ Keyless Chuck

            I think if you read what “Local” wrote, he was reffering to Kitten Face as the one person who may or may not be a female.

            but since you took it into offense and added the word “all” females I think it is safe to say you can include your self now and say yes you 2 are all the dumb females there are. anyone else want to add to this nonsense?

            Clearly if thats not what a female does all the time, then please explain yourself since thats exactly what you just did.

          • Snotty James,

            “Clearly if thats not what a female does all the time, then please explain yourself since thats exactly what you just did.”

            I’d like to smack you with a snarky little comment, but I really just feel bad for you. Clearly you hate women and lack a solid grasp of the English language.

            My advice is go back to school or at least to the library. There’s a world of knowledge and experience out there just waiting for you. Give it a shot. Being “Snotty James” isn’t going to take you very far. Bitter and alone is no way to live your life.

      • Say what!

    • Did the gang members control the paddle-boat rentals? 15% of every rental, man…

  10. Wow, what was the point of re-doing the park if no one will maintain it? Once again bad management of funds, and stupid LA officials. I was so excited to visit the park again but now learning this it’s very disappointing.

    • hey your not the only one…I was in every meeting and that was my exact question every time, and all I got was crickets. and just for the record it was not 40ish million dollars, it was actually 89million dollars spent on this lake. you ask for the minuts of the meeting and see for your self, I’ve got my copies…

      Thank our new LA mayor when you see him… he’s the one who was serving distric 13

      • You sound like a 10yr old child that got a new Flatscreen TV for Christmas and crying about why his parents didn’t buy the extended warranty plan.

        • So if I understand you correctly…

          We should invest in infrastructure and not maintain it? That is incredibly short sided.

          What TV needs maintenance? Your comment is incredibly dumb. Incredibly dumb.

  11. How about also fixing the dangerously crumbling sidewalks that surround the park?

    • you can ask that to our newly elected Mayor who knew about the sidewalk problem because I told his feild rep Alejandra Marouin about it and they told me it had nothing to do with the lake restoration. Just gos to show you the kind of representativess we have serving our city.

      if you voted for Eric this is what you get…deal with it!

      • Possibly because it was a federal program? Just a hunch.

        Seriously, the least you could do is use spell check.

        • @sane person

          Dood really? When you get paid, you are taxed for what? Federal an State income tax. And when you say its a federal program, who do you think is footing the bill…? do you think they just printed money for this project?

          the least you can do is your research…! This project was a money grab again.

          • Snotty,

            We’re not discussing taxes, that is a whole other conversation. This is about federal money earmarked for water cleanup. Not taking it would be foolish. I’d rather they spend it cleaning up our environment than starting another war.

            Do your research.

  12. Margarita Kane

    Since when does it become the responsibility of the people that live in that neighborhood to maintain the park or patrol it. Instead of the city spending money on things that make no sense stop all gangs, graffiti. Residents should maintain the appearance of their homes and any common areas that they use not to destroy it. Why do we pay the police if they are not patrolling all areas?

  13. The lack of any explicit connection between “crime”, the homeless, and camper people is discriminatory fear-mongering. Echo Park isn’t nor has it ever been a paradise separate from the surrounding city. It is an extension of our city with all its warts and beauty. I’m a native Angeleno and I’m fine with that. Moreover, I fear heavy-handed, trigger-happy police officers more than I do homeless, camper people, and gang members. The same prejudice directed at them is commonly directed towards the “usual suspects”, i.e., non-white residents. We KNOW, the rest of you don’t, so just STFU about it. It’s a reality that can’t and won’t be diminished to coddle the wealthier with delusions of exclusivity already floating through their paranoid minds. There are also local groups like LACC and Tree People who are experienced with recruiting local youth to preserve green space in their communities. Not to mention that virtually every local high school has service requirements for their students. Plenty of positive options that emphasize optimism, inclusiveness, and education NOT prejudice, discrimination, and a heavily-armed security force.

    • @ Procopio:
      you my friend need to have lunch, I totally agree with what you wrote. I couldn’t of said it better myself, a breath of fresh air. Thank you

      • “you my friend need to have lunch”

        Indeed. He or she absolutely needs to have lunch. You are a genius.

    • White people hate brown people blah blah blah. How can you possibly even think to say that when we have a black president? You are going to have to find a NEW EXCUSE (and it is nothing but) because that one no longer holds water.

      Maybe you could change you excuse from white people hate brown people to something like “we brown people are just inferior- so we just can’t help it” or “I’m really not trying my hardest to make it, so I’m going to blame you”…
      anything other than the status quo, PLEASE…

      • that comment is delusional AND inappropriate. a new bar has been set.

        • Yeah. We are all enjoying the “new” bar that has been set.

          Maybe if we can bribe the IRS to not investigate us then that “new” bar you bespeak may be met. RIght?

          • i found it entertaining that in the first paragraph, you claimed that racism no longer exists. then in the second paragraph you start talking about how lazy and worthless brown people are.

            I suppose there is always the chance that you were being sarcastic.

          • Beantteam, WTF! gather your thoughts slowly. For what it’s worth you had me cracking up. Thanks for the chuckle.

    • Non-white residents? Where? I thought Echo Park was in Orange County dammit!

  14. Native Angeleno replies: I don’t fear the police though I am a man of color.

    I also won’t tell anyone here to STFU about real concerns in the renovated park regarding crime, gangbanging, the homeless — let’s be honest, the homeless in our city may not be noble beings all the time and can be eyesores, filthy to the point of being a health concern for others, and some are involved in criminal activity. I know it, I’ve witnessed it because I’ve worked in downtown for nearly four decades, and I’ve seen the crack smoking and shooting up on the sidewalks, prostitutes going from tent to tent, be real on this.

    And really, what in heck is wrong with thinking of keeping in decent shape one of L.A.’s great old places that has received a new lease on life. I’m amazed at what has happened to EP Lake and the neighborhood in my life time. Am glad of it.

    The old park and lake were on their last legs — the hardy lotuses died, and that’s serious because that plant can live in the worst of waters. The fish population seemed to have disappeared, compared to the days when it was the best fishing lake in Los Angeles, far better than Lincoln, Hollenbeck or MacArthur. The concrete banks were in terrible shape. I know the mud and silt at the lake’s bottom was toxic from the runoff entry on the north end.

    I’ve not always liked the PD here in town, but it’s a new force. I understand they are dealing with suspects who may be armed with more than they had to face in my day. And were I in uniform, like many friends I went to public school with who later joined the force, I and just about anyone I know would be as on-guard as necessary on the mean streets to stay alive.

    I’ll disagree with you on a last point, that Echo Park was never ‘a paradise,’ well it was.

    It was safe for me as a young boy to visit and spend hours fishing. Believe it or not MacArthur was the same. We played all day in safety. I’m probably older than you, and know the difference. This motivates me to keep it clean and safe for the present, and into the future.

    • Well said, sir.

    • Other than disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing, we agree that Echo Park should be preserved as a public green space. Btw, I never assigned sainthood to the homeless. That’s your interpretation. I only ascribed humanity to them and didn’t prescribe criminality, which was the implicit gist of this article. As far as Echo Park ever being a paradise, it never was. Not even recently with crime rates comparable to the 50s and certainly not in the 70s when I was a kid who used to fish at that lake. Along with winos, stoners, bike thieves, gangmembers, and just everyday Angelenos for whom Echo Park was just another public space like any other park. Is that the paradise that you’re sentimental for? Because that’s what it was actually like in those days. A direct reflection of the community surrounding it. Nothing more and certainly not less with no anxiety of being suspected to be an undesireable. I’m looking forward to the gates coming down not being reinforced and so is everyone else who grew up with that public space in their lives.

    • Btw, lucky You to not have any negative memories of heavy-handed, trigger-happy police in this area. I have plenty. I also have positive ones but they don’t diminish the normal reality of being a brown man walking in an area where a crime has been reported. In my younger days, I was certain to be stopped, frisked, and questioned, and maybe even have one of those data-collecting cards filled-out on me. Nowadays, I’ll probably only be questioned. In either case, I prefer it happen in broad daylight and with plenty of witnesses around. I can’t help but feel a shiver go up my spine when the opposite is true. I Know that anything can happen, because it has before, and it can again. This is life in the big city, which includes Echo Park, not “paradise”.

  15. This to me is the epitome of 2013. People would rather have a fenced up pretty park that they can look at from a vantage point instead of having the park open to the public. This attitude creates more crime then prevents it. Self fulfilling prophecy. This is straight up fear mongering. I’m pretty disappointed in this website having posted this story.

    • I second that… Im not surprised anymore, its what they have do to drive traffic through to this site, if they were in the buisness of real news & Journalism do you think they could have the same traffic?

      Sensationalism: is a type of editorial bias in mass media in which events and topics in news stories and pieces are over-hyped to increase viewership or readership numbers.

      Sensationalism may include reporting about generally insignificant matters are and biased presentations of newsworthy topics in a sensationalist, trivial or tabloid manner. information and events are sometimes misrepresented and exaggerated as important or significant, and often includes stories about the actions. the content of which is often insignificant and irrelevant relative to the macro-level day-to-day events that occur globally and instead is broadcast and printed to attract viewers and readers.

      • Did you just copy/paste that? Must have because the grammar and spelling are correct.

        Morons, the fence is coming down as soon as the maintenance work is finished.

        Let’s hear it for “2 generation echo park.” Keeping it reel.

      • The Eastsider has proven itself time after time to be a worthy community forum. It is not mainstream, mass media — where do you get that? Cut and pasted perhaps? because it doesn’t sound/or is written like you — and bro, assuming you are a dude as your writing voice is decidedly male or macho as it were — this board allows us to hash things out.

        When people start venting, and IMHO venting inaccurately as I think you did in your last posting, things get interesting. Or false and off-target when they pilfer from another source, attempting to bolster an argument. This isn’t you, is it? Come clean.

        “…Sensationalism may include reporting about generally insignificant matters are and biased presentations of newsworthy topics in a sensationalist, trivial or tabloid manner. information and events are sometimes misrepresented and exaggerated as important or significant, and often includes stories about the actions. the content of which is often insignificant and irrelevant relative to the macro-level day-to-day events that occur globally and instead is broadcast and printed to attract viewers and readers…”.

        The Eastsider is pretty far from sensational. The site and comments are a blend of news, photos, links, tips, entertainment, crime and where to eat. There’s advertising, too, but I think it’s a good blend.

        Were this site as sensational as you (try to) claim, those who visit would leave and not come back.

  16. My family and I spent a lot of time at EP a few years ago. We never had a problem with gang members but once with a drunk guy. The grass did reek like piss in one spot and got all over my kids clothes one time but that could have been for a million reasons. It was disappointing to see the lake and area slowly erode. That being said it was a beautiful place and a wonderful place to go after a long day at work. The skyline and the sunset were always a treat. Sure, the place is going to get shitted up but look for the escape and not the negative.

  17. I still don’t get why taxpayers are cool with non-taxpayers living in the park, using it as their toilet on the taxpayers’ dime? Make em pay rent! And gangs are not a part of a First World City– sorry I’m not sorry! Will the City of LA allow businesses with a vending license sell their hot dogs and used sweat pants? That’s what I want to know.

    • **without a vending license

    • Completely Agreed.

    • Just Another Commenter

      Agreed! I don’t see it as a necessary part of ‘local color’. Most people want to work, live and relax in a place not ruined by crime and people who don’t care because it’s not ‘theirs’. I don’t understand why it was one way long ago and now everyone seems willing to tolerate it this way now.

  18. Will the hipsters and those from outside of Los Angeles, please give it a break. I grew up in Echo Park and have lived here 3 decades. Echo Park wasn’t terrible but you should have some wits about you. It is your job to be aware of your surroundings, not the cops. If you think Echo Park is unsafe, you should have been to McArthur Park 10 years ago. That or to complain about Echo Park and live in a crusty apartment in the “art district” of downtown. So please. You moved into Echo Park because it was nice, cool, trendy, where it’s at. But it is an area that has been troubled for years. If you can’t handle the heat, get out of the frying pan.

    I’m glad the city put in work into the park, but it’s a public park. Shat is going to go down. Sorry. You chose to live in an urban area, live with the consequences. And by the way, where the flip are the homeless supposed to go? You NIMBIES drive me nuts. Yeah, they’re annoying, but you’ve obviously never been to Little Tokyo at night, pestered by everyone and their mom for change because Skid Row is down the street. Some of the homeless in EP are rather interesting. Go look for a pigeon man by the 101 Alvardo Off Ramp. Nicest guy ever. So ladies and gents, stop your complaining. Go live in Suburbia if you want that style of life. You live in Echo Park, get ready for the grime that comes with it.

    • EP Resident since 3657 BC (i've been here longer so my opinion count more)

      i think we can expect to live here and have people pick up after themselves a little better. Of course the park wont remain pristine, but it’s not pre-destined to become a trash heap again either. We don’t have to choose between echo park and common decency and just because you want to settle doesn’t mean all of us will. All it takes is everyone doing tiny little things like putting their personal trash in a waste bin, not right on the ground. It’s really not that hard.

    • Time’s are a changing Jon, and not what you are thinking. People moving to Echo Park and LA in general came from other places that didn’t have the same urban blight that LA does (read: civility). Gone are the days of gang sympathizers. Gone are the days of crime enablers and excuse makers. LA will be a world class, first world city. There are no rooms for gangs, dealers, taggers, career homeless, beggars, prostitutes, and illegal vendors in a first world city. If you can not be a part of a civilized society and continue to make excuses for urban decay— I think El Salvador will have you back.

  19. Jon, I don’t think many on this thread are as clueless as you’re making them, writing: “…I’m glad the city put in work into the park, but it’s a public park. Shat is going to go down. Sorry. You chose to live in an urban area, live with the consequences…”. I think most who’ve moved into EP in the past six years are well aware of where they were moving to, and what was in place.

    I have to also believe that many in EP and surrounding areas frequent Ct and LT — I’m a native, 3rd gen JA and claim those shortenings because that’s what we and the peeps who lived there used — are know full well that the big homeless pop lives just south of LT and know also full well getting hit up on for change when, for instance, coming out after eating ramen at Dai’s or the house special at Suey’s.

    “…You live in Echo Park, get ready for the grime that comes with it….” — no, we’re trying to talk about keeping the park and lake surrounding it in shape. This unfortunately will include dealings with homeless, gangs, illegal lawn markets, tagging, parking, bikes on walking paths and other assorted urban ills.

    If NIMBIES drive you nuts then get this, they aren’t going away. And get this too, prop values are going to rise along with rents and general cost of living. Things have changed in Echo Park and will continue. Some changes I like, some I detest but I can’t stop it and neither can you or any other single individual.

    I am going to live here and make it work. It’s a better deal to try to get along than toss stones at other folks.

    • Silver Lake resident

      Why is it wrong for residents of this area to ask how the city will ensure the lake isn’t trashed and ruined again in a year? This isn’t NIMBY-ism — it’s simply a matter of respect for the hard work and love that went into the lake’s restoration.

      I’m not advocating for kicking people out. Like you mentioned, it’s a public space that’s to be enjoyed by all. However, trashy and graffiti will drive families and law-abiding citizens away from the lake. I’d hate for EP Lake to turn into MacArthur Park — which is, in theory, a public space but does little to attract members the greater LA population because of the rampant, unregulated amounts of crime and pollution.

      It’s a shame the city dropped all this cash…and yet has no plan in place to make sure EP Lake remains an inviting, beautiful park for decades to come.

  20. Go back to the Westside if you don’t want to deal with inner city elements. Take your gastro-pubs with you.. Echo Park has been ruined by these gawdamn yuppie dbags. Little Joy is fancy now? Is nothing sacred?? Screw off.

  21. The park has never had a huge amount of homeless or camper people before. It has always been pretty lovely. The lotus died because they groomed them too early and in the wrong way one year. It has pretty much always been a place for families and guys playing soccer. I have never felt unsafe in that park at any hour and I had gone there every day for 15 years before this renovation. I don’t get where all of this fear mongering is coming from.

    • @Kelly, if you read through I really don’t see ‘fear mongering,’ with all due respect really — I think most commenters hereaare concerned with keeping a local treasure in good shape when it reopens. And homeless, trash, tagging and banging are realistic issues or concerned.

      Absolutely nothing wrong, racist, or flat earth-believing about taking stake in what will be — first in with bold prediction — the city’s finest urban park/lake. Lincoln, Hollenbeck and MacArthur, the classic LA park/lakes can’t hold a spray can, whoops a candle, to what the renovated place will be. Or already is, we can see it through the holes in the fabric on the fences and some have already entered to take a scout around. It’s pretty nice.

      I don’t think the ‘grooming’ you mention killed the lotus bed, as they were dead down to the (very hardy) roots — I’ve heard some were harvested by Asian peeps (many Asian cultures prize that crunchy root, though an Echo Park lotus root is about the last one I’ve bite), the toxins entering the lake from urban runoff may have reached the critical/fatal point, a deadly plant virus may have done it — maybe a nut case dumped weed killer in.

      I’ve been on this thread like a demon, apologies to anyone offended, but my stake in the old place goes back to age 6 — 7, to when Echo Park lake was a truly magical place. I was there and I can witness: it was clean, safe, well-attended, a place for kids and families — and it was policed and regulated (for instance, a uniformed warden drove around the lake to make sure we fished only from 9 a.m. — noon). There were canoes to rent.

      We of course can’t go back to L.A. circa 1963. But I hope the park and city come back or approaches the safe sensibility that allows a young boy to ride east on Temple alone on a bus, exit at Glendale and then walk alone to the lake to fish alone and play with pals for a Saturday. Get a burger at the boat house, use a restroom that’s clean and safe. And return back west on the (old) 42 bus. For 25 cents. Well I can dream.

      Believe me, those were great days.

      • Corrected, because:

        @Kelly, if you read through I really don’t see ‘fear mongering,’ with all due respect really — I think most commenters here aare concerned with keeping a local treasure in good shape when it reopens. And homeless, trash, tagging and banging are realistic issues of concerned.

        Absolutely nothing wrong, racist, or flat earth-believing about taking stake in what will be — first in with bold prediction — the city’s finest urban park/lake. Lincoln, Hollenbeck and MacArthur, the classic LA park/lakes can’t hold a spray can, whoops a candle, to what the renovated place will be. Or already is, we can see it through the holes in the fabric on the fences and some have already entered to take a scout around. It’s pretty nice.

        I don’t think the ‘grooming’ you mention killed the lotus bed, as they were dead down to the (very hardy) roots — I’ve heard some were harvested by Asian peeps (many Asian cultures prize that crunchy root, though an Echo Park lotus root is about the last one I’d bite), the toxins entering the lake from urban runoff may have reached the critical/fatal point, a deadly plant virus may have done it — maybe a nut case dumped weed killer in.

        I’ve been on this thread like a demon, apologies to anyone offended, but I live minutes away and my stake in the old place goes back to age 6 — 7, to when Echo Park lake was a truly magical place.

        I was there and I can witness: it was clean, safe, well-attended, a place for kids and families — and it was policed and regulated (for instance, a uniformed warden drove around the lake to make sure we fished only from 9 a.m. — noon). There were canoes to rent, adn the greenscaping was like a big garden.

        We of course can’t go back to L.A. circa 1963. But I hope the park and city come back or approaches the safe sensibility that allows a young boy to ride east on Temple alone on a bus, exit at Glendale and then walk alone to the lake to fish alone and play with pals for a Saturday. Get a burger at the boat house, use a restroom that’s clean and safe. And return back west on the old 42 bus. For 25 cents. Well I can dream.

        Believe me, those were great days.

    • Well howdy, front page of The Times reveals fate of lost lotus, or loti? Guy saves them by ripping them off.

      http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-lotus-echo-park-20130606-dto,0,5144106.htmlstory

    • @Kelly

      Lets start with the title of this article shall we? Just to asnwer your last question…

  22. Nobody mentioned the homosexuals by the bathrooms are they going to come back to to the park ,and what is anybody going to do about it nothing.That’s acceptable,but run all the homeless and all the gangbangers out of the park huh.

  23. Undeniably believe that which you stated. Your favorite justification seemed to be on the
    internet the simplest thing to be aware of. I say to you, I definitely get irked while people think about worries that they just do not know
    about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and defined out the whole thing without
    having side effect , people can take a signal. Will likely be
    back to get more. Thanks

  24. Anyways… I found a crackpipe on the grass at the park just last week. Before the gentrification I never saw one.
    I blame the dirty hipsters. If we hire someone to keep those idiots in line and their PBR cans off the grass that’s cool with me.

    • @ Kelly

      Finaly someone else sees the real problem. Thank you

    • I find that really hard to believe, Kelly. I lived in Echo Park before gentrification as well, and it wasn’t pretty. You are fooling yourself.

      In any event, there is no use pining for the “good old days.” Time marches on and gentrification happens in all cities whether we like it or not. Such is the way of the world. Rather than demonize your new neighbors, why not welcome them to the community and be a bit more inclusive. The alternative is for you to be left behind in a grumbling haze of misery as your comfortable world slips away. I would think it’s much better to engage than to isolate, but to each his own.

      Best of luck to you and Local, as you try and fight change. It didn’t work for the segregationists in the south and it won’t work in Echo Park.

      • Sane, i don’t think Kelly or anyone here is ‘fooling themselves.’

        People who are natives of Los Angeles and longtime residents of Echo Park and surrounding ‘hoods and who may have been adversely affected by the changes — we all know how fast it’s happened — have views and beefs that need to be heard. I’m one of them, Ive seen and lived thru the changes, some I like and some I absolutely detest.

        My list of New detestings: more traffic/less parking; gigantic souless apt buildings (that one at Broadway and Chavez is horrible) loud and drunk hipsters (or general invaders to our ‘hood) w/attitude of “I’m here to paaarrrtay! fuck youuu! — saw a party bus of such soused types at Tommy’s Sat. night, and got as far away from them as possible, because they were just too drunk and stoopid to bear; rising rents in EP. The Faux Artistic, I’m Sooo Struggling As an Artist But I’m on A Trust, or Look At Me I’m in Vintage/Thrift! But It’s Tough These Days So My Pops Bails Me Out Every Month chick.

        My list of Old detestings: gangs, tagging, traffic/parking, lack of TJ’s in EP or other food outlet besides our ghetto Von’s — and let’s be real, it is a ghetto Von’s, better since remodeling but still pales to other outlets. If anyone from that corp is reading this, please steam clean that parking lot, it’s dirtier than an auto repair garage’s floor.

        The ‘good old days’ in Los Angeles were damn good, and anyone old and experienced enough to recall them, live thru them, may certainly be allowed some pining. So many of you will never know the beauty and friendliness and safety of what we once had. City of Angels was the proper name, and it fit.

        Who wouldn’t look back fondly on 25 cent gas, plenty of free parking all over town, an Echo Park where a child could play unwatched, so much less traffic and slower too that no one really worried about kids taking out their Christmas bike for a spin. My and pals did this: rod from Commonwealth and Beverly, mile west of Tommy’s, all the way on Beverly to Pershing Square. No worries. Shootings were unheard-of, there were very, very few taggings — now on highway signs and overpasses?, why can’t we stop that? — no used sofas, mattresses or cheap computer tables on curbs; well-tended lawns and gardens, few residences or apts. with bars on windows. Strong public schools, grammer to junior to high, with award-winning student orchestras, forensics, choirs, newspapers and drama clubs. Traipsing all over town on Halloween, no cares.

        A rush hour that lasted one hour.

        “Segregationists in the South,” whoa, let’s pull reins in and get a little perspective here. Bringing up what went on in ‘the South’ with gentrification in EP isn’t just a stretch, it’s completely wrong.

        Am not ‘fighting change,’ am commenting. Don’t ignore that not all ‘change’ is good, friendly, what-is-truly-needed, and is likely making someone else, not you or me, a pocketful of filthy lucre.

  25. Crack pipe on the lawn before opening, eh? Wondered why those gardeners were working so fast.

  26. If only everyone would do the right thing.. it would all take care of itself. Dog owners pick up your dog’s poop. Everyone pickup and dispose of your trash. The place isn’t a swap meet, so don’t use it as such. You wouldn’t tag, etch, or otherwise vandalize your mom or grandma’s home, don’t do it to the park or neighborhood either. Lotus’ are for admiring not eating, not picking for your home. Bathrooms are for #1 and #2, not #69 and other #s. So much what plagues urban life could be solved if everyone could just take a little responsibility for their actions and a little awareness of their impact to others.

  27. I ___________________promise to keep the park clean. I understand that I elected an official to oversee the progress of this park, but ultimately it is my responsibility to maintain it. I will take some time out of my busy life to GAF. If I fail to GAF, I will make sure I place someone a lot more responsible than I have been. This is my promise to ECHO PARK. I will do everything in my power, (which is not much), but if I had power to make sure this park does not become McCarthur Park, rather which is a better option, Fairfax Park. Wait, any other park rather than that which has been aforementioned. Look I just promise to GAF.

    *G-Give A-a F- F…

    Alright every sign and the park will live on.

  28. Hi all,

    Love the engagement here and a lot of valid points have been brought up. Just wanted to give you all a heads up that the Echo Park Security Association’s monthly safety meeting has been discussing this very issue as a top priority–we could really use your voices as we pull together a concrete proposal for how we want to address the safety issue at the newly-restored lake, so that we can effect change via our city officials. Regardless of all of our differences, I think all Echo Park residents want to protect this hefty investment and a lake we all clearly love!

    Our next meeting is next Thursday, 6/27 at 2pm, at the meeting room of the Edendale Library. Don’t be too cool to join us! Be just cool enough to channel all of this comment passion into action.

    Thanks,
    Diana

  29. El Sereno is the next neighborhood ripe for renewal. Incredible views, great architecture. Come check it out.

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