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Warner Bros.' Hollywood sign tramway would privatize access to a public treasure

Warner Bros.' Hollywood sign tramway would privatize access to a public treasure
A view of the Hollywood sign in 2009. (Gabriel Bouys / AFP/Getty Images)

To the editor: Let me get something straight: Landowners and some residents near the Hollywood sign convinced the city of Los Angeles to reduce public access by closing a trailhead at Beachwood Canyon. They had long complained about increased traffic in the area.

Now, there is a proposal to construct a tramway to the sign and charge visitors to access public property. Warner Bros., which would pay for the project, wants to do this to accommodate the locals. Effectively, members of the public will be charged to visit an attraction they are entitled to access for free in the first place.

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Since this project would benefit primarily the people who live near the Hollywood sign, they should pay a surcharge on their property taxes because they are denying the public that to which it has had a historic right to access.

Murray S. Levine, Encino

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To the editor: I have lived in very close proximity to the Hollywood sign for more than 40 years.

In the late 1970s, there was talk of completely removing the dilapidated sign, which had been installed in the hills decades prior as an ad for a home developer. But it turned out there was some love for the sign, and several celebrities “sponsored” the letters. Big deal.

Over the last several years, people have been flocking to the various trailheads to hike up, or simply stopping in the middle of a street to take a photo.

Warner Bros.’ plan is nothing more than a self-promotional hijacking of Hollywood. The people who live here do not want our homes to serve as a backdrop for the studio’s ride. If nothing else, it is an invasion of our privacy.

Diana Jacobs, Los Angeles

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To the editor: How about just giving some thought to a tram system, like the one that ascends to the Getty Center?

Norm Zareski, Palos Verdes Estates

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