By JACQUELINE FERNANDEZ
ECHO PARK –– Ana Moreno has been going to Lucy’s coin laundry for the past seven years. But later this month, Moreno and the other customers at Lucy’s will have to find another place to wash, fluff and fold after one of the neighborhood’s largest coin-laundries shuts its doors “This one is very close, but what can you do?” said Moreno. “ Us poor people have to continue on and accommodate to the changes.”
The laundromat on Sunset Boulevard at Mohawk Street will be closing April 24 as works gets underway to renovate the building and attract new tenants. Lucy’s closure comes only a few years after another big coin laundry closed nearby and as a gentrifying Echo Park loses the discount stores and other shops that catered primarily to working-class shoppers.
With a spot on Sunset Boulevard, Lucy’s is convenient for many locals, with many of them living within walking distance of its nearly 150 washers and dryers. It’s a neighborhood institution for some who have washed their their laundry at Lucy’s for many years.
Orlando Madrid, a Silver Lake resident, is worried about the drastic changes in the neighborhood.
“I have a friend whose mother works here and she is going to lose her job,” he said. “It’s been here for so long that a lot of people are going to miss this place. So many businesses are closing around here; it’s affecting a lot of residents. It’s sad.”
On the other side of Lucy’s, Alex Dejong is folding his laundry. He’s ambivalent to the closure. “I have mixed feelings about it and I definitely have other coin-laundry options, they aren’t as big, but there are others. But, I can totally see how it will affect some people,” he said.
The impact of the closure will go beyond Echo Park. Liz Martinez, who lives in Downtown L.A. and uses Lucy’s regularly when she visits her grandmother.
“My grandmother has been living in her house down the street for over thirty years,” Martinez said. “Everything down Sunset is just restaurants and shops; I don’t know what my grandmother is going to do.”
Here are some nearby coin laundries:
Jacqueline Fernandez is a Los Angeles-based reporter who’s written for various media outlets such as Los Angeles Wave, The Miami Herald and WLRN-Miami Herald News.
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