Silver Lake neighborhood council asks DWP to spare trees

Silver Lake Grassy Knoll/Mary A. Allen

By Mary A. Allen

After discovering that sycamore trees near the Silver Lake Reservoir were scheduled to be removed for a municipal water project, residents came out in force during Wednesday night’s Silver Lake Neighborhood Council meeting in support of the trees.  The council  motion called on the “the DWP explore and be open to other options to place the regulator station besides the two options currently being considered in the area known as the ‘grassy knoll.'” All those in attendance voiced support for any option besides encroachment in green space, including installing a bypass line underneath West Silver Lake Boulevard, which would be more disruptive to traffic.

Discussion and overwhelming support for maintaining green space in Silver Lake  prompted a round of tree hugging among the board members:

“Perhaps this issue can give us the opportunity to re-define the role of trees in our community and to consider giving them stakeholder status,” said Charles Herman-Wurmfeld.  Responded Paul Neuman: “Charles, you are going out on a limb with that suggestion.”

Sunset Junction Street Fair
With the Sunset Junction Street Fair in arrears to the City of Los Angeles by approximately $260,000, residents question whether the annual street fair, scheduled for August 27-28, will be or should be granted an operating permit this year. According to Aaron Green, Community Relations representative for the organizers of the Sunset Junction Street Fair , ‘the permit has been applied for” and “my client is in negotiations with the City of Los Angeles to determine the amount owed.”

In comments echoed by council members, Sunset Junction business owner, Peter Choi said “the Fair has changed from its original spirit.” He also voiced concerns about accessibility for low-income and senior residents of the neighborhood during the weekend of the street fair.

Council approved motions to request 50% vendor discounts for all Silver Lake businesses as well as keeping the venue unfenced and replacing the admission fee with a suggested donation.

Save a Beverly Hills Neutra
The SLNC also consented to “humbly request that the City of Beverly Hills and all pertinent businesses, individuals and agencies do whatever they can to save Richard Neutra’s Kronish House from demolition.” As reported by L.A. Now, on August 3, Soda Partners, owners of Richard Neutra’s Kronish House in Beverly Hills, agreed to postpone demolition until at least October  10, 2011.   Neutra’s architectural practice was based in Silver Lake.

Budget Items Approved

  • $100.00 for banner to promote Friends of Silver Lake Animals Committee Pet Adoption
  • $300.00 to support 4th Annual Howl-O-Ween Doggie Costume Pageant
  • $822.15 for book/CD stand for children’s area in Silver Lake Library
  • $300.00 for power wash cleaning and of the historic bridge where Sunset Boulevard crosses over Silver Lake Boulevard. Total annual cost for quarterly cleaning is $400 ($100 every three months) The Silver Lake Improvement Association will contribute $100.00

The SLNC Governing Board elected Renee Nahum as Co-Chair of the SLNC for the coming fiscal year along with incumbent Clint Lukens. Charles Herman-Wurmfeld accepted the Vice-Chair slot and current Treasurer, Anthony Crump, was re-elected. The secretary position remains unfilled.


  1. Congratulation to Renee Nahum on your position as Co-Chair of our SLNC. The Silver Lake neighborhood stakeholder are truly honored to have you representing us.

  2. Re the Sunset Junction Street Fair, I favor allowing local residents to enter free, and always have. But I think it far too late in the game to impose such things on the fair — they have already made contracts and commitments that just plain have to be paid for, and they just can’t at the last second be out the $20 a head times 1 million people that they planned on. Free entry for local residents just can’t support the contracts already entered into.

    So, while I wish it were not so late in the game, too late for this year, I do strongly urge that free entry for local residents be demanded of the fair from now on. Bringing local residents together is the original justification for this fair, and with the serious burden this fair imposes on we local residents, we should not be priced out of it.

    I’m not sure I feel the same about the price for booths by local merchants, as they are only getting those booths because they are making money — and I haven’t seen anything cheap in these fairs. If they want to agree to cut their prices in half, then maybe half price for the booth would be justified. There has to be some source of money for the fair to pay its high cost of being put on.

  3. The SLNC did the right thing by passing the motion to require the Sunset Junction Street Fair to remove that chain link fence and return to a “Suggested Donation” instead of the mandatory $20 fee. Many businesses close down for the weekend because their regular customers are literally locked out of the area – Intelligentsia, Secret Headquarters, Vacation Vinyl. Sunset Dry Cleaners, The Cheese Store etc. It was mentioned at the SLNC meeting that the Eagle Rock Music Festival does not have fences, is open to the entire community – gay, straight, low income, yuppies etc. – and they don’t sell beer, but encourage fairgoers to get a drink at the local bars and wine shops etc. The Street Fair was just like that for the first 25 years until recently when pure greed changed the event. Congrats to the SLNC and the Silver Lake Community for standing up and stating that the community will control what happens in their neighborhood. Maybe next year they will just cancel the Sunset Junction Street Fair completely and replace it with the Silver Lake Jubilee which has better local bands anyway.

  4. They charge for the Jubilee too — and that also should allow locals in free.

  5. The Sunset Junction Street (un)Fair is an abominable laughingstock, and Aaron Green’s identifier, “…Community Relations representative for the organizers…” tells of just how corporatized the event has become that a liaison mouthpiece is needed to bridge such a divide — one of their own creation and greed-driven perpetuation.

  6. I’ve been back there once since they stopped the donation only entry. I used to love going there, walking around and sampling the different foods and having a few at the local bars. I’d actually go both days. I’ll definitely return when it’s free again.

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