Lions Club to hold Pancake Breakfast; Westchester residents watch Airbus land

BY GEOFF MALEMAN

The Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors is floating an idea for a new parking lot along Vista Del Mar in Playa del Rey that would provide better access to Dockweiler State Beach and improve safety along a stretch of roadway where many pedestrians have been hit trying to take advantage of free parking near the beach.

The plan, which is being shown to airport officials, community groups and the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/ Playa del Rey, would create a new parking lot on the east side of Vista del Mar opposite the old lifeguard headquarters and adjacent to the existing city park.

The lot, which would serve 500 cars, would also include an informal seating and picnic area and landscaping to encourage beachgoers who park in the lot to cross Vista del Mar at the crosswalks. It would also result in the removal of 473 on-street parking spaces along Vista Del Mar.

Dusty Crane of the Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors said the lot would not only improve safety by eliminating on-street parking in that area of Vista del Mar where numerous people have been struck by speeding cars over the years but would also save the bluff face, which has been degraded as a result of years of beachgoers scrambling up and down makeshift paths.

In addition to the proposed parking lot, improved beach access would be created by installing ramps compliant with Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations, new stairs and even a bus stop at the site. Crane added that a key component of the plan would be regrading the face of the bluff native with drought-tolerant, non- invasive planting to control bluff erosion.

Though still in its embryonic stages, the plan was welcomed by members of the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/ Playa del Rey at its March meeting.

The project still needs approval from a variety of entities, including Los Angeles World Airports, which owns the property; the Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors, which would maintain the new parking lot; and the California Coastal Commission.

LIONS CLUB PANCAKE BREAKFAST — Get ready for a great breakfast to benefit a great cause.

From 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 31st, the Venice-Marina Lions Club will host its annual Pancake Breakfast at the Westchester Elks Lodge, 8025 Manchester Ave. in Playa del Rey.

For just $5 per person, you can dine on pancakes, eggs, sausage, bacon, juice and coffee knowing that all proceeds will go to benefit the Los Angeles Police Department’s Pacific Area youth programs.

Tickets are available from members of the club or at the door on the day of the event.

VIEWING PARTY — While thousands lined up in Westchester to watch the inaugural landing of the Airbus A380, scores of people climbed buildings in the Westchester Business District to catch a glimpse of the largest commercial aircraft flying March 19th..

Atop the Airport Office Center, H.B. Drollinger Co. tenants staked out their spots with coffee and donuts in hand, and great viewing spots were also had atop The Parking Spot-Sepulveda and the rooftop parking above Longs Drugs.

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