I want to thank the Burbank Leader for bringing the danger of
losing the 104-year-old carousel in the Media City Center mall to the
public awareness and for your outstanding coverage of the attempts some
of the Burbank residents and I have made to keep the ride in its current
On Nov. 9, after exactly one month of petitioning, I had expressed my
conviction for the third time and submitted 5,919 supporting signatures
to the City Council that this historic treasure is precisely where it
In just the four days prior to that date, 1,046 people signed their
names stating that they no longer plan to shop at the Media City Center
if the Looff Carousel is not included in the renovation of the mall.
Since then, approximately 200 more people have added their names to the
I am extremely grateful to everyone who signed my petition and for the
appreciation that this community has demonstrated for the carousel that
my great-grandfather created in 1895. Additionally, the people to whom
I’ve spoken, especially the children, share my view that the mall should
be developed around this part of our heritage.
Surrounding such a culturally significant and beautiful
merry-go-round, virtually everyone would love to see prospering,
aesthetic, children’s theme stores instead of the current vacancies on
the mall’s first floor. Today I shared this vision with Mr. Joe Paggi of
Center Trust Company, the current owner of the mall.
I suggested that he could market his mall to prospective tenants by
letting store owners know how much this community cherishes its unique
and special antique ride. To educate the public even more, I encouraged
him to coordinate events such as rallies with the carousel owner.
Since Zelman Development will no longer be buying the mall and
removing the carousel, it seems that the people in this city could be
very influential at this point in time. Mr. Paggi confirmed to me that
over the next couple of weeks, he will be taking a fresh look at planning
the center’s future.
If as many people as possible that I met in Burbank during my campaign
will let their views be known during the upcoming weeks at the customer
relations desk at the mall or perhaps by way of letters to the owners, I
think that the Looff Carousel will serve the best purposes for which it
was built with its permanency secured in an ideal location.