November 12, 2019 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

From Mud to Fun

New park to be built along the Grand Canal.

By Sam Catanzaro

What is now an empty lot of mud along the Grand Canal will soon be a park complete with a playground, exercise equipment, native landscaping, and bike racks.

On March 23, after a week of heavy rain, City officials and neighborhood leaders put their boots on and got muddy for the groundbreaking of Via Dolce Park along the Grand Canal.

“This is going to be a wonderful addition to our parks system and it is all thanks to the community,” said Ramon Barajas, Assistant General Manager of Planning, Maintenance & Construction for the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks.

The lot where Via Dolce Park will be built is located in the California Coastal Zone, which means that there are more regulations that must be accounted for in the planning process. Projects proposed within the Coastal Zone often face appeals and lawsuits. Via Dolce Park faced none of these barriers, and the planning process took only four years, which is quick for a Coastal Zone project.

“Anything in the Coastal Zone takes twice as long,” said Los Angeles City Councilmember Mike Bonin. “Here we are four years later doing the groundbreaking. That is a long time but frankly by government’s standard that’s actually light speed.”

The process began when some residents of Marina Peninsula and Silver Strand noticed that there were a bunch of empty lots up for sale. Neighborhood leaders got together and saved three of these lots for community use.

Councilman Mike Bonin (left) and Roman Barajas of the Department of Recreation and Parks speak at the groundbreaking for Via Dolce Park. Photo by Sam Catanzaro

“We had the whole community behind us,” said Sandy West, a member of the Marina Peninsula Community Council. “We saved three lots, and this is one of them and it was always a plan for it to be a park so it is amazing that we are really having a park right now, right here in Venice.”

Originally the City planned to just put simple landscaping in these lots to make them green spaces, but neighborhood leaders pushed for a playground to be added. Without any nearby parks and many families with young children in the community, the City changed their plans to include a play place and other facilities.

“We are going to end up with a park that is not just a pretty little area for people to be in but a place where children can come and play,” said Fred Karlsen, President of the Silver Strand Marina Homeowners Association.  

Even though construction has not started yet, City officials are confident that the park will be open by the summer. Even with this quick construction process, the City is also sure that this park will last for many generations.

 

“Our facilities are planned to last for 50 years at least and many of our facilities are way older than that so when we design them we want to make sure that they actually survive the heavy use that they get,” said Neil Drucker, Program Manager for the Bureau of Engineering.

 

Related Posts

Police Officer in Stable Condition After Knocked Unconscious by Homeless Man

November 11, 2019

November 11, 2019

LAPD officer taken to hospital after encounter with burglary suspect near Boardwalk By Sam Catanzaro A Los Angeles Police Department...

Needles, Medical Supplies Close Part of Venice Beach

November 10, 2019

November 10, 2019

Area south of Venice Beach Pier cordoned off By Sam Catanzaro Authorities have closed off a part of Venice Beach...

City Officials, Airbnb Come to Agreement for Home-Sharing Compliance

November 8, 2019

November 8, 2019

Enforcing new regulations that went into effect Nov. 1 By Sam Catanzaro The Los Angeles City Council has approved an...

Windward Farms is closing after 120% rent increase: Yo! Venice Westside Local Show November 8, 2019

November 8, 2019

November 8, 2019

Yo! Venice Westside Local Show – November 8th, 2019 – all your local news and events in under 5 minutes.*...

Fresh Meals for the Elderly With Chefs for Seniors

November 7, 2019

November 7, 2019

By Keldine Hull Chefs for Seniors offers a unique and tailored dining experience for senior citizens in the comfort of...

Edify TV: Santa Monica Farmers Market Squashes

November 7, 2019

November 7, 2019

Reporter Jacki Karsh heads down to the Santa Monica Farmers Market to hear all about what to do with Autumn...

Restoring Ballona Creek With Autonomous System

November 6, 2019

November 6, 2019

LA County and The Ocean Cleanup to announce new innovative tech to clean Ballona Creek By Chad Winthrop Chair of...

Lily the Pink – Helping Women Look Their Best

November 5, 2019

November 5, 2019

Sandy Allbright’s permanent makeup studio in Brentwood  By Staff Writer For women who want to look their best all the...

Edify TV: Venice Dog-O-Ween

November 5, 2019

November 5, 2019

Venice Dog-O-Ween was Sunday, November 3rd. Dogs and their owners walked the red carpet to show off the best Halloween...

New live/work development is coming to Marina Del Rey, Venice beach Dog-O-Ween red carpet event: Yo! Venice Westside Local Show November 4, 2019

November 4, 2019

November 4, 2019

Yo! Venice Westside Local Show November 4, 2019 – all your local news and events in under 5 minutes.* New...

Yo! Venice Westside Local Show November 1, 2019: Getty Fire Update

November 1, 2019

November 1, 2019

Yo! Venice Westside Local Show November 1, 2019 – special coverage of the #GettyFire, which as of Friday morning has...

Homeless Deaths Doubled Countywide

November 1, 2019

November 1, 2019

LA County Public Health releases report on fatalities among homeless population  By Sam Catanzaro Over the past five years, the...

Edify TV: Santa Monica Heal the Bay Aquarium Halloween Bash

October 31, 2019

October 31, 2019

Relive the fishy spooks. Recently Heal the Bay and the Santa Monica Bay Aquarium hosted Fishy Fest for Halloween and...

Edify TV: Marina Spooktacular 2019

October 31, 2019

October 31, 2019

Over the weekend kids braved the Marina del Spooktacular, a two-day festival put on by LA County offering scares for...