Friday, June 20, 2008

The Militant's Fi(r)st Annivasary - "Life Is Still Pretty Good in Hollywood"

One of the Militant's first blog adventures happened exactly a year ago today when he blogged about attending a meeting on the proposed Hollywood Freeway Central Park, visiting a popular Huell-approved juice joint on the Boulevard and simply taking in the day (and not long afterward, some curious blog readers posted these things called "Comments" on the Militant Angeleno's then-nascent blog, thus making the Militant realize, "Hey, people actually read this thing...Awe-some").

Well you don't know how far you've gone unless you look back on how far you've been, or something like that, so the Militant will revisit his little Hollywood adventure. Or, mind you, the Blockbuster Hollywood Sequel (Hey, The Militant can have fun with cheeky showbiz media cliches, too).

Earlier this month there were a pair of meetings on the proposed freeway cap park to wrap up community feedback on the project, which the Militant is glad to report is progressing nicely. The duplicate meetings, done on a Saturday morning and a Wednesday night, respectively, were held to accommodate people's schedules. Large-sized concept illustrations (pictured above) and descriptions of the park's design (all recommended and subject to change, of course) were shown to the community -- of which a neighbor of one of the Militant's operatives - mind you, this neighbor is a white male homeowner in his late 50s - said, "Judging by the faces in the room, this doesn't look like it's representative of the community." Hey, his words, not the Militant's!

Anyhu, the design included elements like art features (sculptures and murals), an amphitheater, multipurpose sports fields, a water feature, a viewing place for the Hollywood sign, a restaurant in the park, a dog space and an emphasis on greening the residential streets directly adjacent to the park.

Transportation was important, and some community members voiced their support and the need for an uninterrupted bike path, a DASH-type line and overall pedestrian-friendliness, including access to the Hollywood/Western (M) station - the closest to the park.

Even some Hollywood Hills-billies wanted a piece of dat park action, requesting that some of the park be extended north of its intended Bronson Ave. limit. Not so fast there podner -- the freeway no longer runs below ground level at this point!

The 34-acre park is expected to cost more or less around $1 billion, which is still cheaper than acquiring the equivalent amount of existing land at today's property values, and is expected to be 80% funded by federal moolah, and the remaining 20% by state funds, which includes a possible public-private partnership. And speaking of which, with the Speaker of the House being a Californian and the Speaker of the California State Assembly an Angelena, now's the time to work it (gurl)!

With a projected (optimistic) timeline of around 10 years , two down, eight or so to go...

All The Hollywood Juice

Wow, a sub-headline. The Militant hadn't used one of those in a long-ass time. Anyway, a year ago, the Militant paid a visit to the Juice(s) Fountain (pictured right, and BTW, WTF is up with that "C" in the window?), which he had stumbled upon for the first time since they moved from their old location on Vine Street. Unfortunately, on this recent return visit, as he was ready to come in, a fellow pedestrian said to her walking partners, "Sorry, were closed?"

The Militant went into worried shock mode, up until he read the sign on the door showing the closing time as 5 p.m., which was about an hour and a half ago at this point. Fear not, for he shall soon return to that blended fruit juicy goodness.

Though speaking of fruits...or at least wannabe fruits, or more specifically, fruit-topped chemically-composited fro-yo with a name making a reference to a type of treegrown fruit, which has subsequently spawned thousands of imitators referencing that very same fruit, is coming to the Boulevard. Yes folks...

...Pinkberry is coming to the Boulevard (Full disclosure, though the Militant was admittedly a fan last year, he has since Seen The Light in the form of Red Mango. It's all about the creamy, certified active yogurt-cultured Red Mango, baby). Too little, too late. Insert disappointed, jaded sigh here. Of course, they knew full well that they were trumped by another competitor looong ago as staking a claim to the World's Most Famous Street.

The Militant headed to the general area of his compound, not on two wheels this time, but on 48. But first he had to reach his subway train through a rather busy, scaffolding-inundated environment in the form of the gargantuan Hollywood Dubya Hotel, now very much under construction.

Ah, Hollywood. Pardon our dust. The Militant will retrace his Walk Of Fame steps yet again, for his second anniversary.

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