Eagle Rock council discusses mass transit changes and improvements at rec center

Members of the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council covered several topics during their meeting Tuesday including changes in mass transit, an upgrade for a midcentury modern landmark and government control of signs and private property.

Councilwoman Cyndi Otteson made a presentation in support of improvements to the Richard Neutra-designed Eagle Rock Recreation Center, located at 1100 Eagle Vista Drive.

Otteson displayed images and mock-ups for sidewalk extensions, safety railing repairs, repainting playground equipment, restroom improvements for compliance with government regulations as well as shade trees for the gymnastics, basketball and tennis areas. A motion supporting the improvements was unanimously passed by council members.

The council also discussed the L.A. Department of Transportation’s proposed rerouting of DASH bus transit away from Townsend Avenue near Eagle Rock High School. A dip in ridership along Colorado Boulevard was cited as a reason for the proposed change.

The council approved a motion to draft a letter to the L.A. City Council district office asking that the city transportation department preserve the current route and/or add a bus line.

City Councilman Jose Huizar’s planning director, Shawn Kuk, made a presentation about proposed changes to billboard regulations by the L.A. City Council’s Planning and Land-Use Management Committee.

It was followed by a long exchange between members of the council and Huizar’s staff, including transportation and planning deputy Kevin Ocubillo, over various details of the complicated sign ordinance, which remains in development.

In addition, the council moved to accept two land-use recommendations on residential applications; denying permission for a 6-foot-tall fence at a residence on Hill Drive and approving a reduction in the rear-yard setback for a second unit in the backyard at a residence on Colorado Boulevard.

Councilman Matt Hemingway discussed a citizen-reported problem of six casino buses — where patrons apparently gamble inside them — parking along York and Eagle Rock boulevards. The resident said they are attracting homeless people and suspicious drug-related activity and adversely affecting area businesses.

By secret ballot, council members voted to fill a vacant sub-district 1 director seat after presentations by two candidates — Eagle Rock property owner Scott Evans, a retired mechanical engineer and grandparent who served in the U.S. Air Force and has concerns about the growing homeless population; and Efrim Chiavetta, who described himself as a community activist and owner of a homeschooling business who was part of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Council members elected Chiavetta.

It was also announced that the first public meeting to consider a proposed dog park at the Eagle Rock Recreation Center will be held at 6 p.m. on Sept. 22 at Eagle Rock City Hall, 2035 Colorado Blvd.