Silver Lake stairway to get some TLC*

Descanso Stairway/David Heinz

When it came to buying a home, David Heinz was attracted to Descanso Drive in Silver Lake in part because  a nearby public stairway served as a downhill shortcut to the restaurants and shops of Sunset Boulevard. But Heinz soon discovered that the Descanso Stairway suffered from neglect that might keep people from climbing the  138-step pathway. That’s how Heinz and his neighbors decided to organize a clean up this Sunday as a first-step in fixing up the stairway.

“My neighbors and I would love to see this wonderful Silver Lake landmark revitalized,” said Heinz via email. “Some steps have crumbled completely, making navigation of the stairwell difficult; the lighting is almost non-existent at night and it is in desperate need of a cleaning.”

In addition to organizing this weekend’s community clean up, Heinz said he has reached out to city council members to attract attention to the stairway’s poor condition.  He is looking to installing some solar powered lights but concedes the stairway is in need of much more extensive improvements. “We can’t fix the stairs ourselves but at least we can clean them up and hopefully shift some focus in this direction,” he said.

The clean up begins at noon on Sunday, Oct. 13 at the Descanso Stairway, which runs approximately between 3365 Descanso and 3200 Larissa Drive. Heinz asks volunteers to bring  rakes, shovels, trash bags and gloves to be safe.  “There’s some stuff down there you won’t to be picking up with bare paws, that’s for sure,” he said.

* Correction: A previous version said the clean up would take place on Saturday. That’s wrong.  The clean up will take place on Sunday, Oct.13


  1. thanks for posting this guys.
    neighbors – please spare a couple minutes sunday. the more people we get the quicker it will go!

  2. Loma Vista Place stairs got rehabilitated recently, but cars and trucks, mostly delivery and construction (“I’ll fix anything I break.”) often crack and damage stairs that were built when vehicles were not so heavy. I live at the bottom of the stairs and I’m sometimes a curmudgeon about this very thing, alas.

  3. If you want to know what’s up with any of the stairs in our community. Talk to the people that live next to them. Thanks for your support and interest it is greatly needed.

  4. Former Silverlake Resident

    I’m so glad someone is doing this. I remember living in that neighborhood and wanting to use that staircase all the time for the shortcut to the shops on Sunset Blvd.

    Half the time I would have to Proceed with Caution as the homeless have definitely taken the staircase as their dumping ground . . pun intended. Totally disgusting. Human feces.

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