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good samaritan hospital’s $100 million expansion


a new homeless housing shelter at el pueblo


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Spetember 10, 2018 I VOL. 47 I #37

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See Page 14





Skid Row ReFresh Spot Fully Reopens


lmost six months after a purportedly short-term shutdown, a hygiene center for homeless individuals is fully operational again. The Skid Row Community ReFresh Spot reopened on Friday, Sept. 7, with expanded hours and services. The space contains three trailers holding showers, sinks, toilets, and washer and dryer setups. The Skid Row Community Improvement Coalition, in partnership with Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office, developed the ReFresh Spot. The center launched last December at 557 Crocker St. It closed in March so that it could be expanded and enhanced. However, a one-month renovation stretched on repeatedly; trailers had to be shipped to the site and then connected to utilities. Additionally, project representatives blamed part of the delay on the time it took to secure approvals from the state. One trailer began operating July 10, but the wait for the other two endured. The ReFresh Spot, which formerly was open on parts of four days each week, is now a full-time facility. The team behind the hygiene center anticipates that more than 300 people will use the space each day.


Alamo Drafthouse to Debut in Mid-2019


et another opening date has been set for the Downtown Alamo Drafthouse. According to the Austin, Texas-based boutique cinema chain, an 11-screen complex at The Bloc in the Financial District will now debut in the second quarter of 2019. Construction is underway on the space in the shopping center on Seventh Street, and according to an Alamo press release, a search is underway for a general manager, head chef and marketing manager. News of Alamo’s impending arrival in Downtown Los Angeles was first reported in 2014, and last year Alamo Drafthouse announced a planned 2018 opening. Alamo is known for its mix of first-run and independent films, upscale food and beverage programs, and an aggressive no-talking and texting policy during films. The Downtown Alamo will include the Video Vortex, a bar that doubles as a movie rental location. Rentals will be free, according to the company, and will include Blu-Rays, DVDs and even VHS cassettes.

City Council Adopts Electric Scooter Regulations


lectric scooters, bikes and dockless bike share companies are primed to roll into Downtown Los Angeles. Last week, the City Council unanimously approved pilot regulations for mobile transportation devices

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SEPTEMBER 10, 2018

within city limits. Though scooters from Lime and Bird have overwhelmed certain Westside neighborhoods, they have had only a minor presence in the Central City. The new rules include a $20,000 annual fee for each company and a $130 charge for every device. A company will be capped at 3,000 vehicles, though that could expand to 7,500 if they are deployed in low-income communities. Scooters have a speed limit of 15 mph and there must a clear, large warning on the devices against riding on sidewalks. The pilot program will begin in four months. In the meantime, companies can apply for a conditional permit for up to 3,000 devices.

Luxury High-Rise Opens


fter two years of construction, developer CIM Group’s 34-story apartment tower 888 at Grand Hope Park has opened. Located at 888 S. Hope St., the 525unit high-rise sits just north of and overlooks the park at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. Units start at approximately $2,500 and feature unfinished concrete ceilings, hardwood floors, keyless entry systems and Whirlpool appliances. The project includes Park 888, a 30,000-squarefoot park for residents that has a movie screening area, dog run, activity lawn, pool and more. Interior amenities include a yoga studio and fitness center. Move-ins began Wednesday, Sept. 5, and there are studio to two-bedroom apartments. The high-rise is part of a flurry of upscale projects about to open in the area. Also near completion

is the 648-unit Circa towers, Onni Group’s 53-story 825 South Hill and Alina, Holland Partner Group’s 28-story building that will have 341 rental units.

One Restaurant Closes, Another Will Open


fter nine years, Financial District mainstay Chaya has shut down. The restaurant that served Japanese fusion cuisine in a ground-floor space at City National Plaza stopped serving on Tuesday, Sept. 4. In a statement sent to Los Angeles Downtown News, Yuta Tsunoda, president of Chaya Restaurants, said that construction related to the nearby Regional Connector project played into the decision to close. There has been major work at Fifth and Flower streets for the Metro development. “When Metro construction started just over two years ago, we knew that it would ultimately be a positive thing once finished, but as time has gone on we could not sustain the volume of business we were doing prior and we ultimately had to close the doors,” he said. Chaya’s location in Venice remains open. Though Chaya has departed Downtown, there is about to be a new addition to the food scene. Simone, a restaurant from James Beard Award-winning chef Jessica Largey and film director Joe Russo, will hold an opening event on Saturday, Sept. 15. Located at 447 S. Hewitt St. in the Arts District, the eatery will include Duello, a cocktail Continued on page 20

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Biking, MyFigueroa and Future Improvements


t’s easy to grow frustrated with the glacial pace of public projects in Los Angeles. Case in point is MyFigueroa. The $20 million effort to make a four-mile stretch of Figueroa Street safer and more amenable to bicyclists and pedestrians was first proposed in 2010. It finally opened Aug. 30. That’s an eight-year gestation period. The results, at first glance, are mixed, though we urge observers and travelers to withhold final judgment for a few months, and perhaps longer. It will take cyclists, drivers, mass transit users and city workers at least that long to assess this reimagining of a primary transportation corridor. Tweaks and alterations will likely be needed as plans on paper meet reality on the streets. Hopefully the Los Angeles Department of Transportation, which implemented MyFigueroa, has the money for fixes and will be nimble enough to make required changes. Give LADOT credit for getting to this point. Even with a regional push for more bike-friendly options, most high-traffic corridors in Los Angeles remain auto-centric. Repositioning Figueroa from Martin Luther King Boulevard to Seventh Street (with an additional six-block stretch on 11th Street) was a momentous undertaking, with repercussions not just on commuters, but also on businesses on the street. The easiest thing would have been to make no changes. Instead, LADOT tried to be proactive. MyFigueroa complements some other efforts to make Downtown Los Angeles more navigable for those on foot and two wheels (these days, the two wheels might mean an electric scooter, something which never could have been anticipated eight years ago, but that seems likely to be part of the future mobility scene). Green bike lanes have been painted on Spring Street, among other locations. The Second Street tunnel now has dedicated space for bicycles. Automobile lanes were stripped from Broadway as part of a traffic calming effort. The protected bike lanes are the most salient feature of MyFigueroa, though they only run for about 1.75 miles of the route. It’s fair to ask if the average cyclist, who has reasonable concerns about pedaling so close to so many automobiles, will try the route, or if only the most avid bike riders will take advantage. The early stage of MyFigueroa is crucial, and whatever plans and budget LADOT has to educate cyclists and drivers, we hope they will double them. That is because several new elements on the route could confuse people. There are, for example, timed sensors that let bikes go, but hold up cars, or vice versa. There are sections where a bike in the right lane makes a left turn by essentially cutting across multiple lanes of waiting traffic, but it assumes drivers pay specific attention to their signal, and are not confused by a separate signal for cyclists — given how people fiddle with their phones, the danger is obvious. Early on, idling cars are often blocking green lanes near the Convention Center, which can force cyclists to veer into traffic. Ideally these issues can be mitigated, though that requires work and money. We hope it happens and that MyFigueroa can reach its potential.

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Regarding the article “A Dog Park to Call Their Own,” about a new canine play facility in Skid Row opened by the Weingart Center, by Sean P. Thomas This is a wonderful project for the pets and their owners. I hope everyone does their part in cleaning up after their pet, because it could ruin the whole project if that doesn’t happen. —Terri Willette Can someone explain how a residents-only dog park benefits the larger community? Because it seems to be excluding the larger community. Way to go, Weingart. —Patryk Strait Regarding the article “Finally, MyFigueroa Is Ready to Roll,” about the introduction of the $20 million project that includes protected bike lanes, by Sean P. Thomas As a bike rider these protected lanes create a lot of problems. Now, as you ride, you are tucked against the sidewalk with cars parked between you and the traffic. This provides a nice barrier, but also hides you from cars pulling into driveways and turning corners. I have had far more close calls with cars since these lanes came in, and far more close calls with people who don’t understand that this area isn’t part of the sidewalk. Sometimes they walk right through EDITOR: Jon Regardie STAFF WRITER: Nicholas Slayton, Sean P. Thomas CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Tom Fassbender, Jeff Favre

S I N C E 19 7 2

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without looking, coming off a bus or crossing the street. I’m not saying the lanes don’t help some people, but they are an imperfect solution, and for me they make things more dangerous. —writer identified as “Under” This is a welcome improvement to Figueroa. However, there is one stretch that is a big problem: The single southbound lane from Pico to Washington is often jammed and slow-moving. This stretch of street needs two lanes. Please fix it. —Richard M. Darling Then take the lane along with the “Cult of Vehicular Cyclists” as we’ve always been forced to do; no one is stopping you. As for me, I can look for potential right hooks as I ride at a gentle pace. The truck about to crush me from behind is another issue. —Erik Griswold

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SEPTEMBER 10, 2018


Looking Back at Metro Charter The Triumphs and Challenges of Launching a School in Downtown By Simon Ha s one of the founding parents of Metro Charter Elementary School, I watched our daughter start kindergarten five years ago and grow into a smart, ambitious and urban fifth grader. She recently had her first day of school in Metro Charter’s new location in Lincoln Heights. Our car usually sits in the garage during the week, but our daily routine has changed. Now we drive out of Downtown and


GUEST OPINION experience the traffic coming in during rush hour. It kind of defeats the purpose of Downtown living, but I don’t think anyone would be sympathetic to our inconveniences. We lived the dream of being in L.A. without traffic for over 10 years. In June, as the end of the last school year was approaching, Los Angeles Downtown News published the editorial “Metro Charter Departure Is a Community Failure,” about the school’s impending move. Looking back a few months later, I realize the failure was not due to a lack of effort by the school, the community or the many business stakeholders who tried to help. Rather, we were victims of the economy. The irony is that the growth and popularity of Downtown — everyone wants to be here! — made it impossible for Metro Charter to remain in Downtown — we can’t afford to be here. Metro Charter received a lot of help along the way. When a group of founding parents were planning the school, we got support from Sara Hernandez in Councilman José Huizar’s office, Carol Schatz and Hal Bastian from the Central City Association/Downtown Center Business Improvement District, and many other community and business leaders. Margaret Peterson and Nate Nusbaum from California Hospital gave us the temporary space to start the school and allowed us to

overstay our lease by two additional school years. Sauli Danpour from Xyvest Holdings, who owns several Downtown office buildings, supported Metro Charter from the inception and housed our third to fifth graders at his office building on Wilshire and Hope last year. Carol Pfannkuche from the Ketchum-Downtown YMCA wanted and tried to accommodate our younger students in

ALTHOUGH WE DRIVE NOW, I’M GRATEFUL I WAS ABLE TO WALK MY DAUGHTER TO SCHOOL FOR FIVE YEARS. WITH THE GROWING RESIDENTIAL POPULATION IN THE DOWNTOWN CORE, I HOPE OTHER PARENTS WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO WALK THEIR KIDS TO SCHOOL. space on the ground floor of the Bunker Hill building. But the city Department of Building and Safety and the L.A. Fire Department would not allow the facility to be converted to a school use without very expensive upgrades to the garage below the Y. I’ll skip the details, but the situation was frustrating to many. The biggest hurdle was finding a home, whether a property to buy, or a place to lease long-term. Numerous members of Metro Charter’s board tried to solve the problem, including



Chinmaya Misra, Apurva Pande, Noel Hyun and Jessica Lall. These individuals and others did all they could to keep the school in Downtown. Although economics made it challenging, a few people in the real estate world understood the greater good a successful elementary school would have provided to Downtown. Still, there was a chasm between support and a deal. I had always hoped a hero like Eli Broad would come to the rescue. Broad Elementary School alongside The Broad museum would have been amazing. On the first day of school, only about 10 of 50 students from my daughter’s fourth grade last year returned for fifth grade. Fortunately, she is still with the best friends she has had since kindergarten. And she loves her new teacher and the grassy outdoor space that she had never experienced when the school was in the heart of Downtown. Although we drive now, I’m grateful I was able to walk my daughter to school for five years. With the growing residential population in the Downtown core, I hope other parents will have the opportunity to walk their kids to school. This should be the case, as tens of thousands of residential units are being built in projects including Metropolis, Oceanwide Plaza, Circa, the numerous Onni towers and Aven (the list goes on and on). Indeed, when I met I Fei Chang, the former CEO of Greenland USA, shortly after construction started on Metropolis over four years ago, the first question she asked me was, where do kids go to school? Many other developers asked the same question. Unfortunately, I can no longer say our school is in Downtown. My daughter will move on to middle school next year, but I hope Metro Charter can return soon to serve its original mission: to provide a high-quality, walkable elementary school for the parents who fall in love with DTLA and want to stay. Simon Ha is a partner and urban mixed-use practice leader at Steinberg Architects and a founding parent at Metro Charter Elementary School.



SEPTEMBER 10, 2018

Good Samaritan Debuts $100 Million Expansion City West Hospital Addition Provides State-of-the-Art Operating Rooms and Radiation Treatment By Nicholas Slayton ood Samaritan Hospital has been a part of Los Angeles since 1885 and has been in its current location since 1911. It has expanded consistently over the decades, including a major addition in 1953, the opening of an outpatient surgery center in 1984, and the debut of cardiothoracic surgery and intensive care wings in 1990. The City West hospital continues to expand. On Tuesday, Sept. 4, it formally opened the Frank R. Seaver Ambulatory Surgery Center. It’s the final component of a nearly 200,000-square-foot structure known as the Good Samaritan Medical Pavilion that also increases outpatient services. Five floors of doctors’ officers in the building at 1225 Wilshire Blvd. began opening in December 2016. The final elements have taken longer to install, but will allow Good Samaritan to provide new levels of care, according to hospital CEO Andy Leeka. The Seaver Center is the highlight, an outpatient operating complex that can serve nearly three dozen people at a time. The facility was first proposed in 2008, right around the time the national economy collapsed. Leeka looked back at the genus with a smile. “Who in their right mind in that point and time would say, ‘Let’s build this seven-sto-


ry, $100 million ambulatory surgery center?’” Leeka remarked recently during a tour of the building. The Seaver Center, named for a late oil magnate whose trust donated $12.1 million to the hospital, is on the second floor of the Good Samaritan Medical Pavilion. It has eight operating rooms, each 650 square feet, along with a waiting room, staffing stations and storage facilities. The building includes a new radiology and oncology center on the first floor, which started treating patients on Aug. 20. The 10,000-square-foot center boasts a collection of state-of-the-art equipment, according to Dr. Florence Wright, medical director for radiology oncology services. The centerpiece of the radiation center is the TrueBeam, a roughly 10-foot-tall “linear accelerator” that provides radiation therapy for cancer patients. In addition to its power and accuracy, the TrueBeam — which can cost between $750,000 and $1.5 million — works fast, delivering treatment in approximately 15 minutes, according to Wright; this is faster than older methods that take 30-60 minutes. The TrueBeam allows the hospital to treat as many as 30 people each day. Wright added that having the TrueBeam allows the hospital to participate in more clinical and academic studies.

Andy Leeka, CEO of Good Samaritan Hospital, oversaw the building of a $100 million expansion known as the Medical Pavilion. It has five floors of doctor’s office and eight operating rooms. Also shown is Yasmin Sharifi, clinical nursing director for the new Seaver Ambulatory Surgery Center.

photo by Gary Leonard

Building Better Care The Seaver Center’s operating rooms are arranged in two groups, each with four rooms surrounding a supply area. Leeka said that the number of rooms is more than what

is found in some hospitals, and acknowledged that building that many operating rooms added to the cost. Still, he said it will allow Good Samaritan to handle the growing population in the Downtown area.


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The new wing includes a radiology and oncology center. It is highlighted by the TrueBeam, a 10-foot-tall “linear accelerator” that can provide faster radiation treatment than was possible in the past.

The end result, Leeka said, is a facility that allows the hospital not only to treat more patients, but to prepare for changes in the medical industry. “We know healthcare is evolving,” Leeka said. “People used to come to a hospital for a five-day stay. Now you might be a day-and-a-half. Knees and hips are going from in-patient to outpatient settings. The center has 32 pre- and post-op rooms, with a bathroom in each. The rooms have motorized gurneys, allowing staff to wheel patients between beds and operating rooms. Doctors can even perform surgery on those gurneys if necessary, according to Yasmin Sharifi, clinical nursing director for the center. Sharifi noted that the new equipment also helps staff keep better track of supplies, specifically controlled substances such as anesthetics. She pointed to the Omnicell cabinets in each operating room, which act as computerized, automated drug-dispensing systems. “Not only do these keep track of what’s used, it keeps track of charting how much is used on patients,” she said. “There’s a huge safety component here. If there are any discrepancies, it notifies the user.” The center has other elements one would expect in a medical structure, such as a pharmacy on the second floor, as well as things that might surprise some observers — a case in point is a large sterilization room. The facility, adjacent to one of the operating room pods, has six different machines designed to quickly clean medical equipment and allow staff to deal with a high number of patients, Sharifi said. That focus on efficiency factors into every aspect of the building, including the radiation clinic. Wright said that with Downtown’s growing population, there is a need for advanced and up-to-date oncology services. Good Samaritan was providing that before, but some of the technology was aging. The upper floors of the building house 105,000 square feet of offices for doctors, both primary care and specialty practices. Leeka said the medical pavilion has been functioning as the hospital hoped, but that the neighborhood around Good Samaritan is much different than when the addition was initially planned. He said that the number of younger patients at the hospital is increasing, and these individuals have different healthcare needs. Looking to the development scene in Downtown, Leeka said that City West is largely underserved. Plans called for the Seaver Center to open with four to six of the operating rooms available, and then to ramp upwards. nicholas@downtownnews.com

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A collection of five trailers for homeless individuals will open Monday, Sept. 10, on a former parking lot near Olvera Street. The project includes an outdoor deck.

By Nicholas Slayton ast week, city officials gathered near El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument to unveil a temporary housing shelter for homeless individuals living in the area. It is the first in a series of projects being set up across Los Angeles. Forty-five people will move into the collection of trailers at 711 N. Alameda St. on Monday, Sept. 10. The goal is for them to transition to permanent supportive housing within a few months. The facility, on the site of a city-owned former parking lot, is the first entry in the city’s “A Bridge Home” program, which aims to erect temporary shelters in all 15 City Council districts. The El Pueblo project is budgeted at $2.4 million in the first year, for installation and operating costs. The price tag is estimated at $1.3 million in each of the next two years. The nonprofit The People Concern will operate the facility through a contract with the city. Mayor Eric Garcetti described the new shelter as “low barrier,” meaning every effort will be made to get people off the streets. Those who, for example, suffer from mental illness or have pets would not be excluded. The project comes as the region suffers from a staggering homelessness crisis. According to the January count conducted by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, there are more than 53,000 unsheltered people in Los Angeles County, and upwards of 31,500 in the city. In the effort to address the situation, city voters in 2016 approved Proposition HHH, which is expected to raise $1.2 billion to build thousands of units of permanent supportive housing. Garcetti said the El Pueblo shelter will help homeless individuals while


those projects are under construction. “While the city gets to work building them, people in desperate need need help now. That’s what A Bridge Home is all about,” Garcetti said. “We can’t just keep people alive on the streets, we can’t just wait for that day in which they will have a permanent apartment. We need to do something today.” The project was announced in January. In addition to installing the trailers, water and power lines had to be connected. Money came from the city’s general fund, as well as Measure H, a county parcel tax for homeless services. Three residential trailers each have 15 beds, and each space has a nightstand, drawers and a kit of hygiene supplies. The shelter will house 30 men and 15 women at launch; the individuals are selected by The People Concern, and all of them had been living in tent encampments near El Pueblo. A fourth trailer has showers and toilets, while a fifth holds offices for case workers and service providers. There will be on-site security. There is no time limit for someone to stay at the facility, but the goal is to get people into permanent housing in three to six months, according to City Councilman José Huizar, whose 14th District includes Downtown. Beds will open up on a rolling basis when someone transitions to permanent housing. “These are emergency, immediate shelters, triage-type housing so we get people off the streets into temporary shelters and eventually into permanent supportive housing,” Huizar said. Chris Espinosa, general manager of El Pueblo, which is a city department, said that many area business owners were uncertain about the plan at first, in part due to concern

SEPTEMBER 10, 2018



New Shelters, New Tent Prohibitions W

hen Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the proposal to have emergency shelter facilities in each council district, he said they would be accompanied by increased street cleaning in the surrounding neighborhood, and enforcement of policies to clear the sidewalks of tent encampments during the day. It was part of the effort to get neighborhood stakeholders to support the projects. That will come into play in Downtown Los Angeles in a month. The El Pueblo shelter will begin operations on Monday, Sept. 10. On Oct. 10, tents will be prohibited from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. in the area bounded by Broadway, Cesar Chavez Avenue, and Alameda and Arcadia streets. Plans to prepare people living in area tent encampments have long been underway. The city plan is for outreach teams to visit nearby homeless encampments 90 days prior to the launch of a shelter. Those teams will work to connect people to services, including vetting them for the temporary housing spaces.

The teams will continue outreach effort for at least 30 days after the opening of a shelter. Thirty days after the temporary housing spaces debut, the city will start “enhanced cleanup” in a “special enforcement zone,” according to Matt Szabo, deputy chief of staff to Mayor Eric Garcetti. There will be five cleanings a week, one comprehensive with pressure washing of sidewalks, and four smaller ones. While tents can go up overnight, they must be cleared out by 6 a.m. Enforcement zones will be marked by metal signs, which outline the rules in English and Spanish. “During the daytime, we do need to make sure these sidewalks are clear,” Garcetti said at a press conference on Wednesday, Sept. 5. Szabo said that people whose tents are up after the 30-day period will not be arrested, but they will have to take their tents down. —Nicholas Slayton


Historic downtown Los Angeles is about to write a new chapter. photo by Gary Leonard

Three trailers each hold 15 beds. Initially there will be space for 30 men and 15 women.

over the loss of parking. He said a series of meetings with shelter operators and Olvera Street merchants helped ease concerns that the shelters would attract more homeless people. “The fact is over the last several years we’ve seen an increase in homelessness around this area,” Espinosa said. “I think we all realized we need to do something, we need to step up and give it a go. It is getting very serious.” The shelter’s debut will bring a new policy regarding items on sidewalks in the neighborhood around El Pueblo. Starting Oct. 10, no tents will be allowed up from 6 a.m.-9 p.m. in the area bordered by Broadway, Cesar Chavez Avenue and Arcadia and Alameda streets. (See accompanying story for more information). In addition to the trailers, the facility sports a wooden deck, designed pro bono by the Downtown office of architecture firm Gensler. The deck has wooden picnic tables and an overhead shade and rain structure. A community garden is at the corner of Alameda and Arcadia streets. A pet area is behind the hygiene trailer.

John Maceri, executive director of The People Concern, acknowledged that the El Pueblo shelter is not a permanent fix for the homelessness crisis, but stressed that it can help. “I’ve been asked a lot of times what difference is 45 beds going to make?” Maceri said. “It’s not about 45 beds, it’s about 45 people. The first 45 people and the next 45, and the 45 people after that and after that.” The city is working on creating additional bridge housing projects across Los Angeles. Two of those in development would be in Downtown. One, the former L.A. Children’s Museum at 310 N. Main St., would have 100 beds. The city is also looking to acquire a building at 1426 Paloma St. near the 10 Freeway. The city would partner with the county to operate the site, which would have 119 beds. Shelters are expected to operate for three years. When there is no space available, outreach teams from LAHSA and The People Concern will work to help homeless individuals in those neighborhoods get access to services and other kinds of housing. nicholas@downtownnews.com

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Effort Underway to Provide More Showers for Homeless Individuals Downtown Training Sessions Showcase Facilities and Detail Hurdles By Sean P. Thomas or people living on the streets, finding a place to take a warm shower can prove difficult. Beyond the facilities offered at various Skid Row missions, the only public options are the few showers at the Skid Community Refresh Spot on Crocker Street, and the portable shower trailers operated by Lava Mae set up three days a week at various locations. More options are expected. The ReFresh spot just expanded and the County Board of Supervisors recently approved allocating $200,000 from its Homeless Initiative Fund to expand the use of mobile showers owned by the Office of Emergency Management. Lava Mae also hopes to help provide a solution. The San Francisco-based nonprofit recently held its first training session in Downtown, at the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator in the Arts District, to teach people how to operate the facilities and provide their own services. Another training session takes place this week. Paul Asplund, Lava Mae’s director of partnerships and development, said that the services are most effective when offered by local organizations and community members. The hope is that by reaching out to people entrenched in neighborhoods — in this case Downtown — those who stand to benefit from the service will be made aware of what is available. “Inside a community, you have the allies already,” Asplund said during a break from the training. “If we’re coming from outside we have to build that relationship from scratch, but if you already live in that community and decide to start that service, you have someone in city hall you know, you have a neighbor.” Lava Mae was founded in San Francisco in 2013 by Doniece Sandoval. Initially a bus was converted into a mobile shower.


It expanded to Los Angeles in 2016. The local Lava Mae showers operate weekdays at different locations in L.A., with three stops in Downtown. On Tuesday it sets up outside of the St. Francis Center at 1835 S. Hope St., Wednesdays see a Lava Mae trailer park adjacent to City Hall, and on Friday crews bring their service to Gladys Park at 808 E. Sixth St in Skid Row. Showers are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Lava Mae privately funds local efforts with an operating budget of $562,000 for Los Angeles. According to Deborah Schneider, Lava Mae’s external relations director, efforts are funded entirely by individuals, foundations and corporations. No government funds are collected, though Asplund noted that local politicians facilitate the services. “Our relationship with Los Angeles has been amazing. The mayor has been on our side, the City Council and the County Supervisors understand the important of what we are doing,” Asplund said. “It’s essential that we have their cooperation.” Since its inception, Lava Mae has shifted from its bus model, and now builds trailers. The standard white and blue trailer has three shower stalls, including one with a wheelchair-accessible ramp. The units offer most everything you would find in a home bathroom, including a shower, toilet, folded towels, artwork and artificial plants. The initial training session drew six people. One of them was Rachel Sunday, who works in Plaza Vista and founded Power of a Shower, a start-up nonprofit that aims to provide mobile bathroom services. Her husband, Aaron Sunday, also attended the session. The two were enthusiastic about the possibilities. “This is something I can get behind,” Aaron Sunday said.

photo courtesy Lava Mae

People wait outside of a Lava Mae mobile shower unit in Los Angeles for a chance to use the facilities.

“This seems super important.” Access to toilets and showers gained increased attention last year after more than 500 people, many of them homeless in San Diego, contracted hepatitis A, leading to 20 deaths. The Downtown meeting extended beyond simple operations, delving into start-up costs, daily expenditures, guidelines as well as government and health regulations. Nonprofits that elect to follow Lava Mae’s model will operate independently and not be considered a part of Lava Mae. Start-up costs for a typical three-shower trailer run close to $100,000, attendees of the training session learned. That doesn’t include potential staffing costs determined by variables such as the number of days operators offers services. Kris Kepler, Lava Mae’s senior director of programs and im-

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pact, acknowledged that the price can be a barrier to people looking to replicate Lava Mae’s model. “Funding I think is tough start-up wise, and also making sure that you are financially sustainable,” Kepler said. “But it depends on the services that you provide.” Lava Mae is holding another training session at the Cleantech Incubator from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 12. Those interested in participating should contact Tracy Korpela at replication@lavamae.org or (415) 660-7425. sean@downtownnews.com

The Central City Crime Report By Nicholas Slayton n the Central City Crime Report, we survey the recent week in public safety. All information is provided by the LAPD’s Central Division.


■ At midday on Aug. 2, an unidentified individual drove up to a pedestrian standing on Olympic Boulevard, got out and grabbed the person’s phone. The assailant then got back in to the car and drove off. ■ Two people entered a Hill Street gas station on the evening of July 29. They grabbed candy and fled without paying. ■ Six people approached an individual in a park on San Julian Street on July 29. One person held the victim down while the other five grabbed his wallet, phone and money. ■ An unidentified individual pulled out a gun and fired multiple rounds at another person in an alley off Pico Boulevard on the morning of July 30. No one was hit. ■ An unidentified individual was waiting for an Amtrak train at Union Station shortly after midnight on July 30. Someone snuck up and stole the person’s briefcase. ■ A man who was sleeping on Alameda Street on the afternoon on July 31 was pepper sprayed by an unknown assailant. ■ An individual left his keys in the door of his Main Street apartment on Aug. 1. Someone then stole the keys. ■ Someone entered a convenience store near Union Station on the morning of Aug. 1. The person grabbed candy, put it in his pants, then left without paying. ■ Someone tried to steal an Infiniti parked at Fourth and Spring streets around midnight on Aug. 2, but was detained. ■ An unidentified group of people entered a Spring Street apartment building on the evening of July 31. While in the structure, they took someone’s French bulldog. ■ An unidentified individual hit another person in the back of the head around dawn on Aug. 1 on Spring Street. The assailant then took $300 from the victim’s wallet. ■ Someone grabbed the tip jar from a restaurant on Vignes Street on Aug. 1 and tried to leave. One person stepped in, but was pushed away. Another person detained the thief. nicholas@downtownnews.com

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SEPTEMBER 10, 2018

Shop Hop: The Downtown Retail Roundup

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Brick and Mortar: In what feels like a twist on consumer trends, an e-commerce company is opening its first physical location in Downtown Los Angeles. Canadian firm Shopify is coming to the Row DTLA complex in the Industrial District, with a debut expected by the end of the year. But don’t expect a traditional store. Shopify hosts web platforms for merchants to sell their products, and this will be a place for retailers to learn skills and pick up tips. Expect seminars and occasional events where crafts makers deal their wares. Coming to 777 S. Alameda St.


By Nicholas Slayton etail Without Retail: A Nordstrom is coming to the Financial District complex The Bloc! But hold on — this is not a traditional Nordstrom department store, nor is it a discounted Nordstrom Rack like the one found in the FIGat7th complex. Instead, this will be a 2,200-square-foot Nordstrom Local. If you’re unfamiliar, the first one debuted on Melrose, and it doesn’t carry merchandise. Instead, customers visit and talk to experienced staffers who can help them select garments that are ordered online, with a later pick-up. The Melrose Nordstrom Local offers alteration and tailoring services, and people can make an appointment to come in; they also offer beverages for customers. Expect something similar at The Bloc. The Downtown store will open in October. At 700 S. Flower St. or shop.nordstrom.com.


Broadway World: Japanese sportswear and apparel company Visvim has filled a 3,000-square-foot space on the ground floor of the iconic Bradbury Building (it appeared in Blade Runner and many other films). The store, which debuted in late July, carries designs from Hiroki Nakamura, with items including a damaged jeans jacket that goes for $1,105, and green sandals that sell for $690. In other words, expect to pay high prices for casual looks. The flagship store is partially or-


The dog grooming and boarding space the Pupper Club opened last month on Los Angeles Street.

photo courtesy of The Pupper Club

ganized like an art gallery, with a re-created U.S. army tent in the middle. At 304 S. Broadway or visvim.tv. More Art in the Arts District: Another gallery has arrived in the Arts District. Mash Gallery, from artist Haleh Mashian, debuted on Palmetto Street on Aug. 25. The 2,000-square-foot space will be organized around shows created by a rotating group of curators. The inaugural exhibit comes from


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The Dog Leagues: Downtown really loves dogs. It loves them so much that businesses continue to spring up that cater to humans’ four-legged friends. One of the newest is The Pupper Club, which opened on the ground floor of the Pacific Electric Lofts on Los Angeles Street. The dog spa and play space offers grooming services as well as overnight lodging for canines 35 pounds or lighter. There are also play areas for dogs, including ball pits. At 603 S. Los Angeles St. or thepupperclub.com. Farewell to Downtown: There’s one less furniture and antiques store in Downtown Los Angeles. Hughes Vintage, which had been at 458 S. Alameda St. since 2014, closed its showroom in June. The store was a showcase of vintage furniture, with most pieces coming from estate sales. Hughes Estate Sales’ original location in Altadena remains open. Furniture Fix: While Downtown lost one vintage home furnishings space, a modern spot has arrived. Arper, an Italian designer, has opened a showroom that is its third American location and first in California. The Financial District space debuted on Thursday, Sept. 6, and offers a selection of sleek and minimalist furniture; expect a twist on the Mid-Century Modern chic of the 1960s. Options include the Loop, a two-seat white sofa with an arching back, while the red Saari couch has only seats and legs. At 550 S. Hope St. or arper.com. Heard about any store openings, closings or other retail news? If so, contact Shop Hop at nicholas@downtownnews.com.

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Crime Concerns Aired at Community Event Residents, Police and Others Discuss Mental Health,Vehicle Break-ins and More

photo by Sean P. Thomas

A panel of 10 government, law enforcement and nonprofit leaders discussed public safety and crime at a meeting last week at the Ketchum-Downtown YMCA.

By Sean P. Thomas eople are eager to talk about the booming residential scene in Downtown Los Angeles, which has also sparked a cultural and culinary explosion. Yet another subject is frequently on the lips of Downtowners these days: crime, and its impact on the safety of area residents and workers. Crime took center stage during a 90-min-


ute “town hall” style event last week. Approximately three dozen people attended the public forum held on Thursday, Sept. 6, at the Ketchum-Downtown YMCA. The event was organized by the office of City Councilman José Huizar, whose 14th District includes Downtown. Topics covered included violent crime, and erratic and unlawful behavior by mentally ill individuals.

LAPD Central Division Captain Marc Reina detailed the latest statistics. He noted that part one crimes — the most serious transgressions, which include homicide, aggravated assault, robbery, rape and burglary — are up 6.8% in Central in 2018 over the same period last year. Overall violent crime in the Central City, however, has fallen by 10.5%. Property crime has risen 14.4% compared

to 2017 levels, and personal property theft is up 9.4%. “What we have found, particularly in Skid Row, is that we have drug dealers and gang members and criminal predators coming down and trying to infiltrate the homeless population, people that obviously need help,” Reina said while displaying a PowerPoint presentation. “They are feeding the addiction of a lot of those people and hiding in plain sight.” The topic of vehicle break-ins also surfaced. They have skyrocketed in Central Division this year. Reina revealed there have been 1,161 incidents in 2018, up 35% from last year. In July, Los Angeles Downtown News reported on the increase in car thefts; in the article, Central Division representatives noted that car theft rings are operating in South Park and other communities, and will travel in a van or other vehicle and hit several cars within a few minutes. Officers also said that thieves are more brazen than in the past, and will break a window not only when valuables are in sight, but even if they see a pile of clothes, reasoning that something of worth might be hidden underneath. Another topic at the town hall was public safety as it pertains to mentally unstable people, tent encampments, and gang and criminal activities in and around Skid Row. Some questions submitted by audience members asked about law enforcement’s onthe-street footprint. Central Bureau Deputy Chief Regina Scott said there are plans to commission a study that will explore how to Continued on page 20



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photo by Shea Donovan

(l to r) Jenni Marie Lopez, Brooke Van Grinsven, Leslie Rubino and Samantha LaBrecque appear in Lizzie. The show is in the rock club Resident.

The Punk Rock, All-Women, Axe-Wielding

Musical ‘Lizzie’ Puts a Loud and Modern Spin on an Infamous 1892 Murder Case By Nicholas Slayton


n 1892, in the small town of Fall River, Mass., 32-year-old Lizzie Borden went on trial, accused of brutally murdering her parents with an axe (she was acquitted, though assumptions of her guilt persist). The double homicide has endured as one of the nation’s most infamous and fascinating murders. It has been recounted multiple times, from the 1965 opera Lizzie Borden to the 2015 Lifetime network mini-series “The Lizzie Borden Chronicles.” Although the murders took place 126 years ago, the story still holds an appeal. Now it is being told again, in Downtown Los Angeles, though in an unlikely way: as a musical in a rock club in the Arts District. Lizzie opens on Friday, Sept. 14, at Resident on Hewitt Street. There will be seven performances through Sept. 29. The Downtown show builds off a 1990 production from the team of Tim Maner and Steven Cheslik-DeMeyer. It draws from the records of the Borden trial, but is also fueled by modern punk rock. This production comes from the Los Angeles-based Light and Color Theatre Ensemble and is the troupe’s first presentation of the show. The company had long wanted to stage Lizzie, but wasn’t sure about the timing, according to show director and Light and Color Artistic Director Joanna Syiek. Finally, the company decided they were ready, and contacted the authors. “I love that the show has such raw, ridiculous energy. I think musical theater needs to grow and adapt for the future and Lizzie’s got that kind of energy,” Syiek said. “I love that it’s an all-female cast, which we very rarely see. The

music is really unique, compared to when you think of a typical musical.” That energy and punk approach appealed to Leslie Rubino, who plays the title character. She knew of the murders, but not the musical, and decided to research the story. She also dived into 1990s bands where women played key roles, such as The Pixies and the Dresden Dolls. “I love the history and mindset of serial killers. I’ve been doing a lot more research and I delved more into the Borden family history,” Rubino said. Referring to the Netflix show about an FBI profiler, she added, “I also watched a lot of “Mindhunter.” Small Stage Many people are familiar with the broad outlines of the Borden case, or at least are familiar with the macabre folk rhyme. It goes, “Lizzie Borden took an axe, gave her mother 40 whacks. When she saw what she had done, she gave her father 41.” The rhyme opens the show. Lizzie then dives into the backstory, recounting the abuse Borden endured at home and her close relationship with the family maid, Alice. It leads up to the homicides — which are depicted onstage; Rubino said she was able to get a “good feel” for the axe in rehearsals — and the sensational court case that followed. The all-female cast allows the team to focus on the struggles women faced in the patriarchal society of the 1890s. Syiek said that the show’s format lets the production challenge those period norms, such as in the number “Burn It Up,” when Borden ignites her dress. Continued on page 16

SEPTEMBER 10, 2018



Too Much Effort in ‘Sweat’ Taper Play About Pennsylvania Factory Workers Has Powerful Moments But Often Feels Forced By Jeff Favre he blue-collar Rust Belt factory worker, long overlooked in national politics, wound up in the spotlight the last two years. Pundits cited that demographic as a key component to Donald Trump’s White House win in 2016. The atypical election and actions by the president are sure to inspire works of fiction, but it’s interesting that while Sweat appears to be the first Trump-inspired play of note, it actually premiered the year before his win and is set during the George W. Bush tenure. Lynn Nottage’s intriguing but ultimately disappointing work uses steel factory workers in Reading, Penn., as a microcosm of working class frustration. Directed by Lisa Peterson, the two-and-a-half hour Pulitzer Prize-winning drama runs through Oct. 7 at the Mark Taper Forum in Downtown Los Angeles. Sweat earned Nottage her second Pulitzer (the first came in 2009 for Ruined), and, as is her custom, she conducted extensive research on the topic, including interviewing many people in Reading. Unlike her subtle and layered Intimate Apparel, which appeared at the Taper in 2004 and featured a remarkable performance by Viola Davis, Sweat can’t escape its by-the-numbers struc-


ture and too on-the-nose dialogue. After a fascinating and carefully crafted opening scene, the script immediately moves to an emotional height that leaves little room for expansion. Told mostly in flashback, the setup begins in 2008 when parole officer Evan (Kevin T. Carroll) meets separately with some former pals. There’s the regret-filled and bitter Chris (Grantham Coleman), and Jason (Will Hochman), who has white supremacist tattoos and appears to be on the edge of a violent explosion. For 10 minutes the characters are given room to breathe and to show us the result of lives gone wrong. Things go awry, though, when Nottage uses the trope of letting the audience know these young men committed a horrible crime that will be alluded to but not revealed for another couple of hours. The play then shifts to the year 2000, and to the primary setting, a bar (a homey and visually impressive set design by Christopher Barreca). There, longtime employees at a steel tubing factory complain about their jobs while being served to excess by former factory veteran Stan (Michael O’Keefe), whose career ended when he suffered a severe leg injury. The regulars are gruff and tough Tracey

Tracey (Mary Mara, left) and Cynthia (Portia) are bar habitués in the blue-collar town of Reading, Penn. in Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama Sweat, which opened last week at the Mark Taper Forum.

photo copyright 2018 Craig Schwartz Photography

(Mary Mara), who is Jason’s mom, her best friend and Chris’ mom, Cynthia (the onenamed Portia), along with their friend Jessie (Amy Pietz), who spends nearly the entire play extremely drunk. The other inhabitants are bar employee Oscar (Peter Mendoza), whose family comes from Colombia, and Cynthia’s estranged husband Brucie (John Earl Jelks), who has a drug problem. Tracey is white and Cynthia is black, which becomes a larger issue as the women vie for a rare potential promotion from floor worker

to supervisor. The other looming concern is NAFTA, which during this period led to many industry jobs moving to Mexico. The characters have potential, but they arrive already in full meltdown mode. Instead of showing the disintegration of their lives and relationships, Nottage sticks mostly to declarations of how long each person has worked at the factory, how much they hate the bosses, and eventually, how angry they are with each other. Instead of seeing the struggle, we’re told Continued on page 16


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SEPTEMBER 10, 2018


photo copyright 2018 Craig Schwartz Photography

Much of the action in Sweat takes place at a bar patronized by factory workers. Shown (l to r) are Will Hochman, Michael O’Keefe and Grantham Coleman.

SWEAT, 15 about it. Cynthia, at one of the most poignant moments, cries out that her friends don’t know what she’s had to endure — but neither does the audience. Given the overwrought dialogue it’s easy to see why the performances lean toward melodrama. The lone exception is O’Keefe, who is afforded the chance to vary his emotional palette because Stan comes across as the most complex and compelling character. The violent climax may have some surprises, but Steve Rankin’s fight direction is clunky, and a failure to gradually build tension removes most of the impact. Abrupt scene changes come with loud


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cap.ucla.edu 310 825 2101



Resident is a compact space and not a traditional theater; the stage near the bar is usually filled by rock bands. In Lizzie some action takes place to the side of the stage, but Syiek said the show is presented as if the audience is watching a concert. The minimalist set depicts the Borden house, complete with period furniture. As the show goes on the set is slowly demolished, giving way to an emptier stage. In the second act that allows for some headbanging from the cast. That theme continues in the costumes, which start off in 1890s gear, then morph into torn outfits evocative of the punk scene. There’s a tongue-in-cheek element in the music, as evidenced by a song with the title “Why Are All These Heads Off?” Rubino said it’s one of her favorites, and helps detail Lizzie’s upbringing with her abusive father. Lizzie’s affinity for pigeons comes into play. “He didn’t like her spending time with birds and in her own mind,” Rubino said. “To get her grounded, he chopped off all her pigeons’ heads. In the song we get

music and sound designs by Paul James Prendergast, mixed with explosive projections by Yee Eun Nam, in an attempt to ramp up the energy, but the impact isn’t matched by the scenes themselves. Yes, Sweat won a Pulitzer, and Nottage deserves credit for recognizing a demographic that is under-examined and undervalued in American society and in its art. She may have gotten the facts right and created characters with realistic backgrounds, but that doesn’t keep Sweat from feeling as if it’s trying too hard to shout its message, instead of letting it unfold in an authentic manner. Sweat runs through Oct. 7 at the Mark Taper Forum, 135 N. Grand Ave., (213) 628-2772 or centertheatregroup.org.

angsty and gritty and we’re all screaming and squelching into the mic. It’s also the turning point for Lizzie.” Rubino said the choreography is relatively simple — don’t expect big song and dance numbers à la an Ahmanson Theatre production — but that things escalate into more elaborate moves. She pointed to the final number, “In Your Wildest Dreams,” where the actresses set themselves up like back-up singers. As for the level of violence in a show based on an infamous double murder, Syiek said there is a “medium” amount of blood. Still, it remains onstage, with no risk of audiences getting splattered. Syiek said that part of the fun with Lizzie is that it plays with the perspectives of the people involved in the murders, from Lizzie to Alice. It also allows the cast and crew to take a modern look at a bloody undertaking. After all, Syiek noted, back in 1892, many people said there was no way a woman could commit the heinous act. Lizzie runs Sept. 14-29 at Resident, 428 S. Hewitt St. or lizzielosangeles.com. nicholas@downtownnews.com

SEPTEMBER 10, 2018

DT the don't miss list one




By Sean P. Thomas

photo courtesy of Javier Guillen for Grand Park/Music Center photo by Adi Shniderman

FRIDAY, SEPT. 14 Coffee and Conversations: Don’t Stop the Presses: Truth, Justice, & the American Newspaper City Club of Los Angeles, 555 S. Flower St. or townhall-la.org. 8 a.m.: Los Angeles Times columnist Patt Morrison discusses her new book at a morning event hosted by the organization Town Hall-Los Angeles. Olivia Gatwood Bootleg Theater, 2220 Beverly Blvd., (213) 389-3856 or bootlegtheater.org. 8:30 p.m.: The poet and activist talks gender roles, growing up and the struggles of relationships. Can U.S. Democracy Survive Russian Information Warfare? National Center for the Preservation of Democracy, 111 N. Central Ave. or zocalopublicsquare.org. 7:30 p.m.: KCRW’s Warren Olney hosts a roundtable discussion on the impact and threat of Russian disinformation campaigns and the fragile state of election systems. SATURDAY, SEPT. 15 Los Angeles Times Ideas Exchange with John Kerry 929 S. Broadway, (213) 235-9614 or acehotel.com/calendar/los-angeles 6:30 p.m.: The former Secretary of State sits down to discuss his decades-long career, the Iran nuclear deal and current affairs. Risk! LA Bootleg Theater, 2220 Beverly Blvd., (213) 389-3856 or bootlegtheater.org. 7:30 p.m.: See funny people tell true stories in this live podcast taping. SUNDAY, SEPT. 16 Gerry Orz at The Last Bookstore 453 S. Spring St., (213) 488-0599 or lastbookstorela.com. 6:30 p.m.: The 17-year-old author talks about his new book “Lucky or Not, Here I Come.” Feel free to feel inadequate.

photo courtesy of Patt Morrison




There are some who believe that house music’s mix of drum and bass-heavy beats are best enjoyed within four walls of an underground dance club. Don’t tell that to the gang behind Sunday Sessions. Wrapping up its sixth season on the Grand Park Performance Lawn on Sept. 16, the free concert series offers Downtowners a chance to celebrate Los Angeles’ contribution to the genre in an al fresco setting. From 2-8 p.m., Focus DJs (Nonfiction and Josh Billings), David Montoya, Juliet Mendoza and Lacey IQ will take over the turntables and get bodies moving. Food trucks will be on scene in case you get a little peckish. At 200 N. Grand Ave., grandparkla.org or (213) 972-8080.


Does your pup need more culture in her life? Billing itself as America’s first art exhibition curated specifically for dogs, the travelling show dOGUMENTA will bed down at FIGat7th on Friday-Sunday, Sept. 14-16. It runs from 11 a.m.-6 p.m., and two- and four-legged attendees will experience a variety of media, from audio and sculptures to canine-friendly items such as kibble and squeaky toys. The exhibit is limited to one dog per person and all pets must remain on a leash. Reservations are requested, but walk-ons will be allowed on a first-come, first-served basis. If you and your barking buddy can’t make this weekend’s dates, dOGUMENTA returns on Sept. 21-23. Hey, who’s a good boy? You are! You are! At 735 S. Figueroa St. or artsbrookfield.com.

photo by Brian McCarty


Godzilla is just the tip of the mountain when it comes to destructive monsters of Japanese lore. Learn about kaiju (“strange creatures”) and the heroes who sprung up to defeat them in Kaiju vs. Heroes: Mark Nagata’s Journey Through the World of Japanese Toys. The exhibit opens at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo on Saturday, Sept. 15. Nagata, a toy collector and designer, will share his love for the colorful universe through his vast collection. Check out pintsized representations of popular kaiju such as King Ghidorah and Drazoran, along with lesser-known heroes like Kamen Rider and Kikaida. At 100 N. Central Ave., (213) 625-0414 or janm.org.


photo courtesy of Teragram Ballroom

Ace Hotel 929 S. Broadway or acehotel.com/calendar/los-angeles. Sept. 10: Get ready for the pomp, circumstance and pop and colors when arena rocker Katy Perry hits a much smaller stage. Sept. 14: An evening with Wardruna is a chance to experience the Viking-tinged sounds of Norwegian folk. Sept. 16: Support the environment and efforts to preserve the Paris Climate Accords. The Pathway to Paris show includes Patti Smith, Karen O, Dhani Harrison, Flea and more. Tony Hawk will also be there. Blue Whale 123 Astronaut E. S. Onizuka St., (213) 620-0908 or bluewhalemusic.com. Sept. 10: Jason Fabus Trio. Sept. 11: Dan Rosenboom Group. Sept. 12: Corey Coverstone Group. Sept. 13: Marcel Carmago, Gerald Clayton. Sept. 14: Helen Sung Quartet has a CD release show. Yes, in this day and age they still make CDs. Sept. 15-16: Steve Lehman Trio. Bootleg Bar 2220 Beverly Blvd., (213) 389-3856 or bootlegtheater.org. Sept. 10: The members of September’s resident act Cillie Barnes have apparently only seen the third season of “Twin Peaks.” Sept. 11: Unwed Sailor and Early Day Miners are the early 20th century romantic working class double bill you dreamed of. Sept. 13: Send Medicine is a timely reminder of the need for more affordable healthcare. Also, they play surf rock. Sept. 14: Miniature Tigers are on their “Tell It to the Volcano” Continued on next page

Considering the vitriol raining down from the executive branch, and the description of the media as the enemy of the people, there is no better time than now to discuss the importance of a free press. The first guest for the organization Town Hall-Los Angeles’ “Coffee and Conversations” series will do just that. On Friday, Sept. 14, longtime journalist Patt Morrison will chat about her new book, Don’t Stop the Presses: Truth, Justice and the American Newspaper. Morrison, whose many credits include being a columnist with the Los Angeles Times, will appear at the City Club Los Angeles, on the 51st floor of a Financial District tower, at 8 a.m. (hence the coffee). Morrison will pull from her book to detail the influence and importance of newspapers to American democracy, and she might just bring up the president. At 555 S. Flower St. or townhall-la.org.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Peter Buck has a side project. The guitarist and co-founder of R.E.M., Buck has kept busy during his almost 40year music career with a collection of extracurricular gigs including the David Bowie cover group Filthy Friends and the now defunct Hindu Love Gods. Arthur Buck, his latest collaboration, this time with singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur, will take to the Teragram Ballroom stage on Tuesday, Sept. 11. Expect to hear selections from their recently released self-titled album, and if you’re lucky, another familiar number or two. Doors open at 7 p.m. Los Angeles’ Line & Circle will open. At 1234 W. Seventh St. or teragramballroom.com. Send information and possible Don’t Miss List submissions to calendar@downtownnews.com.



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SEPTEMBER 10, 2018

LISTINGS, 17 10th anniversary tour. Hmm, a miniature tiger and a volcano. Sept. 16: Youth Brigade is not militant. Exchange LA 618 S. Spring St., (213) 627-8070 or exchangela.com. Sept. 14: Benny Benassi. Grammy Museum 800 W. Olympic Blvd., (213) 765-6800 or grammymuseum.org. Sept. 10: Leon Bridges brings that smooth neo-soul and rhythm and blues sound. Ham and Eggs Tavern 433 W. Eighth St. or hamandeggstavern.com. Sept. 13: J Bonigno, Mamalarky, Warm Nights. Sept. 15: Tevy Tev, Kameni, The Lavendar Scare. Moroccan Lounge 901 E. First St., (213) 395-0610 or themoroccan.com. Sept. 10: Dream Machine wants to feed you lotus flowers. Sept. 11: Singer-songwriter Tom Odell has a piano and a microphone. Sept. 12: Jungle Fire brings some funky sounds to go with its terrifying mental image-inducing name. Sept. 13: MXXWELL does not care for your mortal concerns, such as spelling. Sept. 14: Lyrics Born croons. Sept. 15: Rayland Baxter had an album produced by rocker Butch Walker, which we feel is a solid endorsement. Sept. 16: Downtown stalwart Johanna Samuels is at the Arts District venue this weekend. Resident 428 S. Hewitt St. or (323) 316-5311 or residentdtla.com. Sept. 14: This edition of the “Bootie L.A.” party is heavy on Madonna and Lady Gaga. Expect costumes. Sept. 15: Not into those pop sounds? “Non Stop Bhangra” is for you, and fans of Indian dance music. Sept. 16: Post-punk from Table Sugar. Seven Grand 515 W. Seventh St., (213) 614-0737 or sevengrand.la. Sept. 10: Slim Pickins. Sept. 11: The Makers were not one of the sources in Bob Woodward’s new book. Sept. 12: Roy Jones. Sept. 13: Rumproller Trio. Sept. 14: The California Feetwarmers are waiting for things to get cold. Sept. 15: COS Trio. Sept. 16: Los 440’s. The Novo 800 W. Olympic Blvd., (213) 765-7000 or thenovodtla.com. Sept. 15: $uicideboy$. The Redwood 316 W. Second St., (213) 680-2600 or theredwoodbar.com. Sept. 10: The Big News should not be confused with the enemy of the people. Sept. 12: Gary Paul Nestler, Dusty Santamaria & Moira Ichiban, The Withers. Sept. 14: Slim Jim Phantom & Friends. Sept. 15: The late great L.A. punk band the Lazy Cowgirls was fronted by Pat Todd. Now Pat Todd performs with the Rankoutsiders. Also on the bill are The Blessings and Kevin K. The Regent 448 S. Main St., (323) 284-5727, or theregenttheater.com. Sept. 12: Time is a flat circle. Murder By Death is performing. Sept. 13: Shy Glizzy headlines the “All Def L.A.” night. Sept. 14: Serious Klein has no time for your shenanigans. Sept. 15: Black Line takes an experimental approach to industrial music. The Smell 247 S. Main St. in the alley between Spring and Main or thesmell.org. Sept. 14: The Cozzmos, Skin Mag, K.O.T.S., FLANGR. Sept. 15: Nauticult, Obliques, Litronix. Teragram Ballroom 1234 W. Seventh St. or teragramballroom.com. Sept. 11: Arthur Buck is the indie rock super group you need. Sept. 13: Emo Night Brooklyn features Ryan Key of Yellowcard, so this is true emo. Sept. 14: Juana Molina brings experimental electronic folk music to City West. Sept. 15: Gøggs features none other than perennial L.A. musician Ty Segall, so expect something truly local.


Downtown Independent 251 S. Main St., (213) 617-1033 or downtownindependent.com. Sept. 10-13: Bo Burnham’s Eighth Grade is a coming of age story that gets into the pains of middle school. Sept. 14-16: E-Demon is about a demon that messes with a group video chat. Finally, demonic possession gets updated for the cell phone generation.

SEPTEMBER 10, 2018



IMAX California Science Center, 700 State Drive, (213) 744-2019 or californiasciencecenter.org. Who doesn’t love pandas? The adorable bears take center stage in the appropriately titled Pandas 3D. Kristen Bell narrates the film about the efforts to reintroduce captive-born pandas into the wild. It’s all about space in Hubble 3D, which carries audiences on a celestial journey, touching on everything from spacewalking astronauts to distant galaxies. Dive into the history of Egypt and the impact of the Nile River as Omar Sharif hosts Mysteries of Egypt. Regal Cinemas LA Live 1000 W. Olympic Blvd., (213) 763-6070 or lalive.com/movies. Through Sept. 16: Peppermint (1:20, 4:10, 5:10, 7, 7:50, 9:50 and 10:40 p.m.); The Nun (12, 12:40, 1:30, 2:40, 3:20, 4:30, 5:20, 6, 6:40, 7:30, 8, 9, 9:40 and 10:30 p.m.); Kin (12:30 and 3:30 p.m.); The Little Stranger (12:50 p.m.); Ya Veremos (11:40 a.m., 2:10, 4:40, 7:20 and 10 p.m.); Operation Finale (12:40, 3:50, 7:10 and 10:30 p.m.); Searching (12:30, 3:20, 6:10 and 9:10 p.m.); The Happytime Murders (12:10 and 2:40 p.m.); Crazy Rich Asians (12, 3, 3:50, 6:20, 7:10, 9:20 and 10:10 p.m.); Blackkklansman (12:10, 3:20, 6:40 and 10 p.m.); The Meg (11:50 a.m., 3, 6 and 9 p.m.); Mission Impossible: Fallout (11:30 a.m., 3:10, 6:40 and 10:20 p.m.). Rooftop Cinema Club Level DTLA, 888 S. Olive St. or rooftopcinemaclub.com/los-angeles. Sept. 11: Romeo and Juliet gets the mid-’90s Venice, Calif. treatment in Baz Luhrmann’s take on the Shakespeare classic. Sept. 12: Eddie Murphy goes to Queens to find his queen in Coming to America. Sept. 13: Strap in. Press play on your iPod. It’s Edgar Wright’s musical heist flick Baby Driver. Sept. 14: Wakanda forever! Black Panther is on the big screen again. Sept. 15: Feel the need, the need for Kenny Loggins and Naval recruiting ads in Top Gun.


Bob Baker Marionette Theater: Enchanted Toy Shop Bob Baker Marionette Theater, 1345 W. First St., (213) 250-9995 or bobbakermarionettes.com. Sept. 14, 10:30 a.m., and Sept. 15-16, 2:30 p.m.: It’s the last week to see the puppeteers at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater bring toys to life. Ain’t Too Proud The Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., (213) 628-2772 or centertheatregroup.org. Sept. 11-14, 8 p.m., Sept. 15, 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sept. 16, 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.: The story of The Temptations comes to life, tracking the origin, triumphs and travails of the Motown group behind “My Girl” and many other hits. Sweat The Mark Taper Forum, 135 N. Grand Ave., (213) 628-2772 or centertheatregroup.org. Sept. 11-14, 8 p.m., Sept. 15, 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sept. 16, 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.: Layoffs and labor disputes threaten a group of friends in an industrial Pennsylvania town in the powerful, Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Lynn Nottage. It’s intense, but there are moments of humor. Through Oct. 7. See review p. 15. Lizzie Resident, 428 Hewitt St. or lizzielosangeles.com. Sept. 14-15, 8 p.m.: The story of Lizzie Borden comes to life in a punk rock-driven musical. The show, with an all-female cast, dives into the murders she was accused of and the trial that followed. Through Sept. 25. See story p. 14.


Piano Spheres: Mark Robson Zipper Hall, 200 S. Grand Ave., (213) 621-2200 or colburnschool.edu. Sept. 11, 8 p.m.: The pianist plays tribute to the late Claude Debussy with his “12 Études.” Camerata Pacifica Zipper Hall, 200 S. Grand Ave., (213) 621-2200 or colburnschool.edu. Sept. 13, 8 p.m.: The group launches its new season with Beethoven’s first published work and Haydn’s last piano sonata.


African American Firefighter Museum 1401 S. Central Ave., (213) 744-1730 or aaffmuseum.org. Ongoing: An array of firefighting relics dating to 1924, including a 1940 Pirsch ladder truck, an 1890 hose wagon, uniforms from New York, L.A. County and City of L.A. firefighters, badges, helmets, photographs and other artifacts. Broad Museum 221 S. Grand Ave., (213) 232-6200 or thebroad.org. Ongoing: In the galleries at the Grand Avenue institution are about 250 works from Eli and Edythe Broad’s 2,000-piece contemporary art collection. It’s big-time

blue chip, with work from Rauschenberg, Warhol, Basquiat, Koons, Kruger and every other big name. Through Feb. 2019: The Broad explores the passage of time with “A Journey That Wasn’t.” FIDM Museum FIDM, second floor, 919 S. Grand Ave., (213) 624-1200 or fidmmuseum.org. Ongoing: “Accessories from The Helen Larson Historic Fashion Collection” surveys footwear, fans, gloves, purses and hats. California African American Museum 600 State Drive, (213) 744-7432 or caamuseum.org. Ongoing: The multi-functional “Gallery of Discovery” offers visitors the opportunity to connect with the lineage of their own family, engage in artistic workshops, educational tours and other programs of historical discoveries. Hear recordings of former slaves from the Library of Congress archives and discover stories from the past. California Science Center 700 State Drive, (323) 724-3623 or californiasciencecenter.org. Through Jan. 6, 2019: “King Tut: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh” features more than 150 artifacts discovered in the Egyptian boy king’s tomb. Tickets are required for this exhibit. Ongoing: “Mission 26: The Big Endeavour” presents Los Angeles’ very own Space Shuttle in all its splendor. Ongoing: “Science in Toyland” presents physics through favorite kids’ toys. This hands-on exhibit engages museum visitors with Dominos, Sails and Roller Coasters in a fun, but informational primer on friction, momentum and chain reactions. Ongoing: The Science Center’s permanent exhibits are interactive and focus on human innovations and inventions as well as the life processes of living things. The lobby Science Court stays busy with the High Wire Bicycle, a Motion-Based Simulator, the Ecology Cliff Climb and “Forty Years of Space Photography.” The human body is another big focus: The Life Tunnel aims to show the connections between all life forms, from the single-celled amoeba to the 100-trillion-celled human being. The “Ecosystems” exhibit explores how life on our planet is shaped by geophysical and biological processes. Chinese American Museum 425 N. Los Angeles St., (213) 485-8567 or camla.org. Through Nov. 4: “Don’t Believe The Hype” explores how hip-hop intersects with the lives of Asian Americans in Los Angeles. Permanent: “Origins” presents the story of the Chinese-American community in Los Angeles. Permanent: Re-creation of the Sun Wing Wo, a Chinese general store and herbal shop, and “Journeys: Stories of Chinese Immigration,” an exhibit exploring Chinese immigration to the United States with an emphasis on community settlement in Los Angeles. Outlined into four distinct time periods, each is defined by an important immigration law and/or event, accompanied by a description and a personal story about a local Chinese American and their experiences in that particular historical period. El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument 124 Paseo de la Plaza, (213) 485-8372 or elpueblo.lacity.org. Ongoing: The whole of El Pueblo is called a “monument,” and of the 27 historic buildings, four function as museums: the Avila Adobe, the city’s oldest house; the Sepulveda House, home to exhibits and the Visitors Center; the Fire House Museum, which houses late 19th-century firefighting equipment; and the Masonic Hall, which boasts Masonic memorabilia. Check the website for a full slate of fiestas. Open daily, though hours at shops and halls vary. Grammy Museum L.A. Live, 800 W. Olympic Blvd., (213) 765-6800 or grammymuseum.org. Through November: With 11 Latin Grammys on his shelf, it’s high time that the Colombian bard receives his due. It comes in “Deep Heart: Roots, Rock & The Music of Carlos Vives.” Through September: More a question of legacy than memorabilia, a titan emerges in exhibition form through “Chasing Trane: John Coltrane’s Musical Journey Transcended.” Through September: Pete Seeger was more than just a musician. The folk singer was an activist, supporter of progressive causes and a documentarian of the struggles of working people. His notes, personal belongings and more are on display in “How Can I Keep From Singing: The Work of Pete Seeger.” Through Spring 2019: Cheech and Chong’s “Up in Smoke” is a comedy icon. Pay homage to 40 years of the stoner film with “Cheech & Chong: Still Rollin’ — Celebrating 40 Year of Up In Smoke.” Ongoing: “360 Sound: The Columbia Records Story” provides an in-depth look at all aspects of Columbia Records’ history and offers a virtual history of the music industry from its infancy, tracing the label’s pivotal technological as well as business innovations, including its invention of the LP. Ongoing: White sequined gloves and other wardrobe pieces are the focal point of the exhibit case paying tribute to the life and legacy of Michael Jackson. Ongoing: “Roland Live” is a permanent installation courtesy of the electronic musical instrument maker, Roland Corporation. The exhibit gives visitors a chance to participate in the music-making process by playing a wide variety of products, from V-Drums and BOSS pedals to VIMA keyboards and the MV-8800 Production Studio. Ongoing: “Shining Like A National Guitar” references both Paul Simon and the celebrated six-string company known for their metallic resonators.



A LISTING: Calendar@DowntownNews.com

Email: Send a brief description, street address and public phone number. Submissions must be received 10 days prior to publication date to be considered for print.



To place a classified ad in the Downtown News please call 213-481-1448 Deadline for classified display and line ads are Thursday at 12pm.


All submissions are subject to federal and California fair housing laws, which make it illegal to indicate in any advertisement any preference, limitation, or discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, ancestry, familial status, source of income or physical or mental disability. We will not knowingly accept any advertising for real estate which is in violation of the law. All persons are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised are available on an equal opportunity basis.


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LEGAL FICTITIOUS BUSINESS NAME Fictitious Business Name Statement File No. 2018205867 The following person(s) is (are) doing business as: (1) PURO ARTE, 322 PARKMAN AVENUE, LOS ANGELES, CA 90026 LA COUNTY (2) PURO ARTE COLLECTIVE, 322 PARKMAN AVENUE, LOS ANGELES, CA 90026 LA COUNTY (3) PURO ARTE GALLERY, 322 PARKMAN AVENUE, LOS ANGELES, CA 90026 LA COUNTY, (4) PURO ARTE GROUP, 322 PARKMAN AVENUE, LOS ANGELES, CA 90026 LA COUNTY are hereby registered by the following registrants: (1) REUBEN DOMINGO, 322 PARKMAN AVENUE, LOS ANGELES, CA 90026 (2) IRENE SUICO SORIANO, 5221 COMERCIO AVE, WOODLAND HILLS, CA 91364. This business is conducted by an Unincorporated Association other than a Partnership. Registrant(s) started to transact business under the fictitious business name or names listed above: N/A. This statement was filed with DEAN C. LOGAN, Los Angeles County Clerk on August 14, 2018.

NOTICE—This fictitious name statement expires five years from the date it was filed in the office of the county clerk. A new fictitious business name statement must be filed before that time. The filing of this statement does not of itself authorize the use in this state of a fictitious business name in violation of the rights of another under federal, state, or common law (see Section 14411 et. seq. Business and Professions Code).Pub. 8/27, 9/3, 9/10 and 9/17. Fictitious Business Name Statement File No. 2018218154 The following individual(s) is (are) doing business as: (1) NISHKIAN CHAMBERLAIN, 6701 CENTER DRIVE W, SUITE 715, LOS ANGELES, CA 90045 LA COUNTY. Mailing Address: 600 HARRISON STREET SUITE 110, SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94107, are hereby registered by the following registrants: (1) NISHKIAN& ASSOCIATES, 600 HARRISON STREET, SUITE 110, SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94107. This business is conducted by a Corporation. Registrant(s) began to transact business under the fictitious business name or names listed above: 06/2018 This statement was filed with DEAN C. LOGAN, Los Angeles County Clerk on August 28, 2018. NOTICE—This fictitious name statement expires five years from the date it was filed in the office of the county clerk. A new fictitious business name statement must be filed before that time. The filing of this statement does not of itself authorize the use in this state of a fictitious business name in violation of the rights of another under federal, state, or common law (see Section 14411 et. seq. Business and Professions Code). Pub. 9/3, 9/10, 9/17 and 9/24.



SEPTEMBER 10, 2018



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better allocate police vehicles in Central Area. Additionally, Scott said there is a plan to discuss sending more officers to the area. Currently, there are normally five or six street patrols, or “foot beats,” in the area, consisting of at least two officers. Scott plans to try to get at least 25 additional officers for Downtown, which would mean as many as 18 foot beats. Huizar said the town hall grew out of concerns that have been voiced by area residents, workers and business owners over the conditions people are experiencing in Downtown. He said getting more officers and services on the street will go a long way toward helping people feel safer. He also noted a need to better address mental health concerns, with aid from the city and county. “It’s a delicate balancing act, because on one hand, we see the growth that is happening and we want to promote Downtown as a place to visit and a place to live,” Huizar said in an interview with Downtown News after the event. “But on the other hand, we have this thing that is just lurking in the background about [people] continuously exhibiting erratic behavior that creates a sense of not being safe. We have to address that issue head on.” Downtown resident Steve Maes attended the town hall. He said he has been threatened twice over the course of a week while walking near Main Street. He said more tangible action must happen before he begins to feel safer. “Getting people to feel safe is going to take something completely different,” he said. Huizar said that he hopes to hold another town hall meeting in a few months to update the community on the latest crime figures and detail the implementation of new programs and funding initiatives. sean@downtownnews.com

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Community Amenities: 24 hr. Manned Lobby Resident Concierge Heated Pool & Spa Fitness Center / Yoga Studio Outdoor Patio Gas BBQ Grills Recreation Room State-of-the-Art HD Theater Rooftop Patio with Views

Apartment Amenities: City and Mountain Views Luxury Appliances & Finishes Central Air & Heating Balconies (Most Units) Basic Cable *All Amenities Under Renovation


he South Park Business Improvement District is trying to help people navigate Downtown. The BID is preparing to install a series of new wayfinding measures, covering almost two dozen utility boxes with vinyl guides to the neighborhood. The signs will go up on 23 boxes in the area roughly bounced by Francisco Street, Broadway, Ninth Street and the California Hospital Medical Center. Two panels on the boxes will point to landmarks such as L.A. Live or the Belasco Theater, and one will offer a guide to nearby restaurants and shops. The fourth panel will show a wider map of Downtown. The BID expects to have all of the signs installed by mid-October. The project was conceived in March, according to a BID spokesperson. The approximately $23,000 price tag is being covered by area sponsors.

Soylent Opens Co-working Space for Food Startups


any people know Soylent as the maker of meal replacement drinks and products. Now the company is opening a co-working space in its Arts District headquarters for other food-tech startups. Dubbed the Soylent Innovation Lab, the space at 555 Mateo St. will debut on Thursday, Sept. 13. Select companies will be offered free space in the 30,000-square-foot building and will be given access to boardrooms, a bar, and a rooftop patio that can double as an event hosting space. Founded in 2013, Soylent moved into its current building last year after outgrowing a previous 16,000-square-foot headquarters in the Historic Core.

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