As I continue to clear out some news chum before starting work on the highway pages, here are some chum items of local-ish interest;
- “This Land” Becomes Real – Gentrification in Watts. In the play “This Land” which we saw recently, a key aspect of the plot was the gentrification of the community of Watts. Turns out — they were right. As one real estate developer said, “There is cheap housing in L.A. … The American dream is still affordable in Watts, Compton and all the forgotten ghettos.” Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at the online real estate site Trulia, took a quick look at the numbers and said home values in Watts and Compton are at post-recession highs, indicating “increased demand to live or invest” in these areas. And who gets pushed out, and where do they go to live….
- Get Your Tacos Now – Music Center Renovation. Well, there goes Tito’s Tacos as a reliable low-cost dinner option before the Ahmanson. The Music Center will be renovating their plaza creating a stronger outdoor performance venue and redoing the restaurants in the process. Note to self: Remember to get dinner in NoHo before you get on the Red Line to go to the Ahmanson or Taper for a while. Still, they need to do this — in particular, the escalators up to the plaza, because finding the elevators from the street is always a pain.
- As if By Magic – Proposed Hilton Universal Expansion. The Hilton Universal City has announced a proposal to expand the hotel. Thank you, Harry Potter. There are still many hurdles to overcome, including the site plan for the studio itself (the hotel is not on studio land). What I’m trying to figure out is precisely where they plan to build this addition, given the layout of the space and the hotel towers. I’m guessing it is going over the meeting space, but I’ve only seen a drawing, not a map. Not many more details here.
- Cutting the Cord — AT&T Removing Undersea Cable. Moving a bit further northwest, AT&T is planning to remove an undersea cable that runs from San Luis Obispo to China. The cable, part of the China-U.S. Cable Network, was retired from service in December 2016. In total, the 18,600-mile, $1.1 billion cable paid for by an international coalition of telecom companies connects the United States with China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan and Guam in a loop and had a capacity of 80 Gigabits, or 100 million phone calls at a time, according to a website that tracks submarine cable networks. The cables connect into a greater system at an AT&T terminal building about 10 miles inland on Los Osos Valley Road. Now it’s obsolete, and as Yoda says, pulled up it will be.
- Why Mother, You’re Growing – Mothers Market Expansion. Lastly, in the expansion of yet another natural food chain, Mother’s Markets are expanding into Los Angeles. Founded in Orange County in 1978 by a group of yoga enthusiasts, the pioneering organic grocery store said it is adding stores next year in Signal Hill and Manhattan Beach. The Signal Hill store, at 2475 Cherry Ave., is an anchor at a new development called Heritage Square. The store is slated to open in early 2018. The Manhattan Beach store, at 1700 Rosecrans Ave., is slated to open in the summer of 2018.