The playing fields of the Northeast Los Angeles Little League were built on landfill atop Elysian Park. League president Sergio Villasenor said the group was told some settling could be expected after they began using the city-owned fields and snack stand in the late 1990s. But, as Villasenor said last week, “our snack bar is beyond settling.” In fact, in June 2012, L.A. Times columnist Steve Lopez focused attention on what Villasenor calls “The Leaning Snack Bar.” While Lopez suggested that perhaps the Dodgers, whose stadium is down hill and in plain sight from the little league fields, could help fix the property, the earth has continued to shift underneath the snack stand and a portion of the right field, which appear to be slumping toward each other. On Sunday, Villasenor was pumping out rain water from a pond that had formed in a crease in the ground where the landfill has continued to settle.
Despite the shifting ground, the players, parents and other fans of the Northeast Little League continue to play and practice at the field, with the league on schedule to host its season opener on March 29. But it’s not clear how much longer the league will continue to play if the landfill keeps settling. Villasenor said the league has been working with the office of Councilman Gil Cedillo to look for solutions or possible a new location for the little league.