*PLAYA PEOPLE – MEET DORIT:
Dorit‘s photo shoot with candlelight in Marina del Rey.
*PLAYA – NEWS: CULVER CITY IS BOOMING BUT HOUSING, RETAIL STILL WEAK POINTS
Runyon Group co-founder Joseph Miller
– Culver City
Culver City has become a magnet for major content companies. HBO announced in 2019 that it would move its headquarters to Ivy Station, a mixed-use project designed by KFA Architecture and developed by Lowe, AECOM-Canyon Partners and Rockwood Capital. In 2018, Apple signed on to occupy an office building along Washington Boulevard and in December locked down five more adjacent buildings. Amazon Studios is slated to move into an expanded and renovated Culver Studios, which is expected to be complete this year. Runyon Group co-founder Joseph Miller noted that Culver City’s population roughly doubles during the workday.
“Balancing that out so that it’s not being flooded during the day and evacuated in the evenings” is something that would benefit the neighborhood and that adding more housing would help achieve, Miller said. Culver City is not an inexpensive place in which to live. Rents for a one-bedroom apartment averaged about $2.3K per month, according to rental data from apartment listings site Zumper. According to listings site RENTCafé, the average rent across all unit types is about $2.5K.
Building and maintaining housing that hits a wide range of price points is key, speakers said. Preserving the existing stock of older buildings that function as the city’s de facto affordable housing stock is critical to meeting the need for housing across a variety of price ranges, Suhr noted. “If we start plowing those under and building new, in whatever density level the city may allow in a future general plan, we’re never going to catch up to the need for all the price points on housing,” Suhr said. KFA Architecture partner Jonathan Watts added that smaller projects, like an eight-unit small-lot project he was recently approached about, can play an important role in making sure a variety of price points are provided for residents.
“Not everyone can plunk down the money for 100 units,” Watts said, and with larger projects taking years and years to complete, smaller projects can yield housing that has a lower cost for the eventual resident. Housing isn’t the only thing that Culver City is missing. Panelists said that supporting unique small businesses is key to keeping and inviting the kind of authenticity that is required to help Culver City grow the best way. The city needs a “critical mass” of retail stores, Rick Moses Development President Rick Moses said, but he cautioned that not just any old retail will do.
“It’s really crucial to keep in mind that the big chains will kill the vibe and the spirit of Culver City,” Moses said. “It’s so important for [retail] to have a local flavor.” The city’s challenges, though, don’t seem to be holding it back. “One of the few markets where investors have looked past the uncertainty [of the pandemic] has been Culver City,” Pendulum Property Partners partner Dan Wagman said.
*PLAYA VISTA PEOPLE:
*PLAYA – NEWS: FORMER ‘BACHELORETTE’ CONTESTANT ALLEGES SECURITY ATTACKED HIM
A former “Bachelorette” contestant claims that a maskless security guard attacked him with anti-Semitic threats after he asked the guard to wear a mask at the parking lot of his Marina del Rey apartment complex, TMZ reports. Michael Garofola, who appeared in season 9 of ABC’s “The Bachelorette,” says a security guard punched him in the head and slammed him into a wall, then pushed and shoved him around, and damaged his iPhone as he tried to film the attack. Police arrested the guard in February. Garofola is now suing the security guard, apartment complex and the guard’s employer.
*PLAYA – NEWS: FEEDCULVER CELEBRATES FIRST ANNIVERSARY AFTER SERVING NEARLY 40,000 MEALS
Culver City police participating in the FeedCulver program
When the pandemic struck early last year, a team of Culver City leaders sprung into action with a bold, innovative plan that has been a lifeline for both food-insecure residents and local restaurants, serving up over 40,000 meals. Dubbed FeedCulver, the new group began purchasing meals from struggling restaurants and developing an infrastructure to deliver those meals to families who had been adversely impacted by the pandemic. April 16 marked one full year since the first meal was served, and the effort is going stronger than ever – largely because the need is as great as ever.
“When we began, there were people who lost their jobs and truly didn’t know where their next meal was coming, and at the same time, our restaurants were struggling to stay afloat,” said Culver City Councilman Göran Eriksson, who was one of the organization’s co-founders. “Unfortunately, we are still feeling the devastating impacts of the pandemic on local families and businesses, but I am proud to say that FeedCulver continues to raise money from the community and local businesses to buy and deliver those desperately needed meals.” Since April 14, 2020, when the group delivered its first meals, almost 40,000 meals, approximately 160 hot meals per day, have been delivered to struggling Culver City individuals and families. The volunteer ranks have swelled to more than 100, and FeedCulver has a wide array of partners from the City of Culver City and the city’s Downtown Business Association to the Culver City Chamber of Commerce and the Culver City Exchange Club.
So far, FeedCulver has helped support 23 area restaurants, including Akasha, Harajuku Taproom, Mega Pizza Grille, Auld Fella, Quicksand, Taproom Pizza Co., Chica’s Tacos, Meet in Paris, Novecento Pasta & Grill, Pasta Sisters, EK Valley, Ugo, George Petrelli Steak House and more. Funding has come from individuals and small businesses as well as major donations from Amazon Studios, The Culver Studios, Cedars-Sinai, Culver City Exchange Club, Sony Pictures and the Culver City Rotary Community Foundation.
“This has absolutely been an example of neighbors helping neighbors during one of the most difficult times in recent memory,” said Eric Sims of the Downtown Business Association. “And the best part is that we are doing more than just feeding the people who need it. We are helping to maintain hospitality jobs that might have otherwise gone away as restaurants closed. We are helping the small businesses in our community that may otherwise have gone out of business. And we are discovering, like never before, that ours is a close-knit community filled with people who care about their neighbors.”
“In many ways, this is an extension of the work we have been doing for many years at Grace Diner,” said Lisa Skelley, manager of the program. “But what makes it special is how many people have stepped up to volunteer, to donate, to support what we are doing with FeedCulver. It has been a very special experience.” Eriksson said FeedCulver continues to seek donations, partnerships and volunteers at its website: www.feedculver.org.
*PLAYA PEOPLE MEET – LIZA AND DAISY:
Liza and Daisy love enjoying lollypops in Playa Vista.
*PLAYA – PLATINUM AWARD:
*PLAYA – LENS:
Ritrovo Playa Vista in the heart of Playa Vista
*PLAYA – PEOPLE: MEET TRIPP
Tripp works in Westchester since December 2020.
FUN FACT: Has a pet turtle named Clementine.
*PLAYA — RESTAURANTS: FLOUR TORTILLA FAVORITES LOQUI OPEN FOR TACOS TODAY IN PLAYA VISTA
– Culver City
Playa Vista’s bright new Free Market complex has arrived, and with it a collection of places to eat, shop, and generally hang out. There’s the brand new Jeni’s Ice Cream for dessert, but the real star of the show on the dining side is Loqui, the popular flour tortilla favorite that first opened at the Platform development in Culver City back in 2016. The restaurant, founded by Cameron Wallace and Ari Ampudia, began as a pop-up out of San Francisco’s Tartine years ago, before heading south and eventually expanding into the Arts District as well.
Now they’ve landed in Playa Vista, not far from the temporarily-closed fellow flour tortilla makers HomeState. The new Loqui will offer patio seating for tacos and Mexican craft beer, as well as a takeaway menu that includes family-style meals and packaged flour tortillas. The restaurant formally opens today, April 15, and will keep hours from Wednesday through Sunday, noon to 8 p.m.
Carney has been living and working in Culver City since April, 2017
*PLAYA – COMMENTARY:
by David Mitzman,Westchester
Westchester Park is becoming more disgusting by the day. The tents and other “housing” are spread throughout the entire park at this point creating an impossibility of enjoying any of the facilities or even a peaceful walk. The dwellers are irresponsible in their maintenance, and Mike Bonin is doing NOTHING! He now wants to make little mini houses at three major beach locations; Will Rogers State Park, Dockweiller Beach, and Fisherman’s Village in MDR. HE HAS GONE OVER THE TOP AND CARES ABSOLUTELY ZERO ABOUT THE PARK IN WESTCHESTER. Please note for the record he has moved from Mar Vista (where their park is being considered for a homeless destination-he has been able to keep it from being like Westchester because he lived in Mar Vista).
Now he doesn’t care about Mar Vista because he has planted himself in Pacific Palisades which is virtually homeless free as is Bel Air, and Beverly Hills. WE PAY PROPERTY TAX AND SHOULD BE ENTITLED TO ENJOY PARKS IN OUR NEIGHBORHOOD WITHOUT FEELING UNCOMFORTABLE. HE IS A JOKE TO US AND MAR VISTA WHILE HE SITS IN HIS “CASTLE” WITH A MOAT AROUND HIM! We need to recall him, his emissary Gascon who has created havoc in Los Angeles by being a defense attorney and not a prosecuting attorney (BTW he has never been a prosecutor), and Garcetti who goes along for the ride in whatever convertible gives him the best sun and air. Can he ever give a news conference without his little laptop in front of him?
*PLAYA VISTA – BUSINESS:
Jessica Alba’s Honest Company filed to go public. The celebrity’s consumer startup had a huge pandemic year selling baby products, lotions, and sanitizers, per CNBC. Revenue hit $300m in 2020 and it could IPO at $2B.
*PLAYA – PEOPLE: MEET WALDO
Waldo working out in Playa Vista.
*PLAYA – BULLETIN BOARD:
1. ***Private utilities are pushing changes that would undermine the growing rooftop solar market in California. That would hurt everyone, not just rooftop solar companies and people interested in buying panels. —– Zeke P., Playa Del Rey.
2. *** It is chiefly through books that I enjoy intercourse with superior minds. —– Virginia L., Culver City.
3. ***The L.A. City Council unanimously approved a resolution calling for the state to close SoCalGas’ Playa del Rey storage facility. Here’s why some say it may pose a far greater threat than Aliso Canyon, site of a record-setting gas leak. Amen! —– Tom and Sally W., Playa Del Rey.
4. ***It’s surprising how much memory is built around things unnoticed at the time. —- Waldo W., Westchester.
5. ***The current pandemic, which has curtailed normal interaction, throws into dramatic relief the central importance of teaching not only for our students’ learning, but also for their overall well-being. —– Pablo E., Culver City
6. ***In this troll-saturated world we find ourselves (sadly) in, it’s hard to care about street-level trolls and their movie boycotts. In fact, it would probably behoove us to stop caring about “trolls” at all. —- Emma E., Playa Vista
7. ***My old boss at YouTube in Playa Vista was self-promoting to the point of arrogance, and heedless of what others might think. —– Darin H., Westchester.
8. ***It sure seems to me that most books on dictators elide the political and cultural conditions that allow for their rise. —– Dr. Walt P., Marina Del Rey.
9. ***A year of isolation has left our lives strewn with carcasses of friendships once held sacred—but can reopening revive them? —- Zane R., Playa Del Rey
10. ***’Switching tabs on the phone or computer and forgetting why’ is the new ‘going to a different room and forgetting why’. —– Jose H., Westchester.
11. ***A papercut could probably be viewed as a tree’s last act of rebellion against its executioners. —– Clay T., Culver City.
12. ***Nearly 15-thousand people have already signed a petition opposing a new plan that calls for relocating homeless people to Los Angeles’ beaches. Earlier this week, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin proposed building tiny homes in beach parking lots in cities like Pacific Palisades and Marina Del Rey. If the proposal passes, beach parking lots would also be zoned for temporary RV camps. Watching. I hope a new petition recalling Councilman Mike Bonin starts circulating immediately. What an idiotic idea! —— Mr. and Ms. Lance and Jennifer Z., Marina Del Rey.
13. ***Suspicious male on a bike. I was running with my dog today around 1 pm on Beethoven and Walsh when a man on a bike passed and slowed down to stare at me, he continued to try and go as slow as possible, I believe to stay in line with my speed. I had stopped to figure out what was going on and he started to circle as a means to stay near me while he continued to stare me down. —- Lindsey Barnes, Del Rey
14.*** HUZZAH! Toys Pop Up at Runway
Part-time Weekend Sales Associate
Our Team Members create an exciting and friendly shopping experience at HUZZAH!
Part-time Sales Associate responsibilities may include:
• Operating the cash register in a fun and efficient manner
• Stocking shelves
• Gift wrapping
• Helping customers choose the perfect, age appropriate toy
• Inventory management
• Community outreach
HUZZAH! is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to hiring a diverse Team.
Interested? Contact cs@HuzzahToys.com
Wanted: Prominent P.R./Branding Firm Seeks Part-Time (Flexible Hours) Intern:
Entry-level Internship at Michael Levine Media, one of America’s premier P.R. and Branding firms having represented *58 Academy Award winners *34 Grammy Award winners, and 43 New York Times best-sellers.
1. Looking for an extremely reliable (6 month commitment) entry team member as an Intern. (Preferably enrolled in school currently, but recent college graduates are encouraged to apply)
2. You must be available for a one hour Zoom call on Friday’s at 3pm Los Angeles time.
3. Must be smart, resourceful, tech-savvy, organized, and hungry to learn. A great opportunity to learn and grow within the world of media and entertainment.
E-mail resume (no attachment) and contact details including a phone number to Ms. Aurora DeRose: firstname.lastname@example.org
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