City Manager’s Updatel
May 16, 2012
City Manager’s Update
Community Development Department
• Westfield Culver City – Tenant Improvements have been completed at the following stores: Extreme Pizza, Things Remembered, Old Navy, Fashion Traffic, FootLocker/Champs Sports, Angl, Inc. Permits have been issued to the following stores: Footaction, Inc., Ulta Beauty, Finish Line, Café Creole. A permit has been issued to Belkin International, Inc., for a new kiosk in the mall.
• EBAY - Plans have been approved for a tenant improvement located at 10451 Jefferson Boulevard.
• Sugar Inc. - A permit has been issued for a tenant improvement located at 3523 Eastham Drive.
• Environmental Impact Report (EIR) – The Planning Division has reviewed the Convention and Event Center Project Draft (expansion of Convention Center and development of a stadium for a future National Football League team) and determined the project will not have any impacts to the City of Culver City.
• The Help Group - The Planning Commission considered a modification to an existing Conditional Use Permit for an increase in enrollment from 400 students to 650 students for the school, which is located at 12095-12101 Washington Boulevard. The Commission denied the modification, by a 3-2 vote.
• Jazz Bakery - Staff responded to Jazz Bakery’s April 2 conceptual plans and schedule of performance and provided information on creation of a temporary and permanent trash enclosure; temporary Center Theatre Group craft area; and general contractor staging area. Using that information, the Jazz Bakery will refine their plans and schedule.
• Washington/Centinela – Staff requested Regency Centers submit a pro forma and to complete a Vehicle Trip and Parking Study to analyze the impacts of including a Trader Joe’s store in the Market Hall project. Once received, these documents will be presented to the City Council, along with input obtained from the April 19 neighborhood meeting.
• Art in Public Places Program - AAA’s Westways magazine included a reference to Culver City’s Art in Public Places Program in their May 2012 issue, noting that Sony’s RAINBOW will be the latest edition to the collection and providing a link to the inventory of public art as included on the City’s website. A follow-up article on Culver City is planned for the magazine’s July issue.
• Cultural Affairs - Staff participated in judging final senior project presentations at Otis College of Art and Design on May 3 together with the public art coordinator from LAX and City of Pasadena. Students had visited various public art installations during the semester, including those located at Westfield Culver City.
Blind Barber – A full service barber shop with a hidden speakeasy restaurant lounge is now open at 10797 Washington Boulevard.
• Arcana: Books on the Arts – Purveyor of fine new, out of print, and rare books on photography, art, fashion, design, architecture and cinema will be opening soon at 8675 Washington Boulevard in the Helms Bakery.
• Culver-Palms YMCA-Healthy Kids Event - The Culver City Fire Department participated in the YMCA-Healthy Kids event at the Westfield Mall. The event was held on April 28 and 29 and was sponsored by the Culver-Palms YMCA in participation with the Westfield Mall. The two day affair was intended to raise awareness of the growing concern for childhood obesity and the importance of developing healthy habits and activities for children. The Fire Department’s involvement centered on fire and earthquake safety and awareness as well as Emergency Preparedness in the home.
Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department
• Administration – The PRCS Director has been invited to attend the Location Managers Guild of America’s meeting on May 19 at the Culver Hotel. This organization is made up of members who are in contact with individuals, organizations and government entities for possible movie and commercial shoot locations around the country. This invitation provides the opportunity to market Culver City and its wide opportunities for movie shoots here in the “Heart of Screenland.” Staff is working on compiling information on the various locations throughout the City.
PRCS Staff met with representatives of the Los Angeles School of Gymnastics regarding their January 2013 international meet, to be held at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium. The organization brings in more than 300 participants and coaches from around the world for the competition. This past year, due to the remodeling of the Veterans Building, the meet was hosted by the City of Los Angeles. Staff is currently negotiating the facility user fees for this three-day event and anticipates a successful resolution within the month.
City staff met with representatives of the Exchange Club to discuss concerns and revisions regarding the City’s participation related to the 4th of July Fireworks Show. In addition to the members of the Exchange Club, there were representatives from the City Manager’s Office, Public Works, the Fire Department, the Police Department and PRCS. Issues covered included traffic, safety and site clean-up. A critical standpoint for the Parks Division is the inability to allocate resources at the 2011 levels; and the time commitment for all Parks maintenance crews to be at the high school, resulting in a two-day delay to clean up City parks. With the event on a Wednesday this year, we will be required to reduce this commitment in order to have City parks ready for the typically busy summer weekend that will follow.
• Recreation – A documentary Film and Mentorship Program for Youth, produced through a collaboration of the Mayme A. Clayton Library and Museum, the Black Association of Documentary Filmmakers-West, and the Culver City Teen Center began on May 15 and will run through June 22. This six-week workshop series brings documentary filmmakers as mentors to youth for the purpose of creating their own 3 – 5 minute documentary films. At the end of the six-week program, a showing of the films will be held at the Mayme A. Clayton Library and Museum.
Wee Savers Financial Program, in collaboration with the Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., Theta Epsilon Sigma Chapter of Culver City, began a five week course beginning the week of May 7. During the five weeks, youth will be exposed to the world of money, learning the principal of reciprocity, why it’s important to earn money, save it, invest it and share it with others.
Applications are currently being accepted for the Youth Mentoring Program for summer 2012. This program allows at-risk youth to gain work experience while being mentored by City employees and earning a paycheck.
The Recreation Division is currently working on the summer 2012 issue of Culver City Living, as well as continuing with the planning of this summer’s Fiesta La Ballona.
• Parks – The new playground at Culver City Park opened on May 8.
• Senior and Social Services – The second Annual Living History Intergenerational Project will begin at the Senior Center on May 18. Elementary school students will interview and write a biography of some of the Center’s members as part of a local LEAP program. (Learning Enrichment After-School Programs.) There are three spots left for adult participants. If interested, please contact Jill Thomsen.
The Culver City Senior Center is pleased to welcome a volunteer notary who will be providing free notary services once a month to Senior Center members. This service will be available at the Center on the 4th Friday of every month from 10 am until noon. Upcoming dates are May 25, June 22, and July 27. To use this service, members must bring their membership card, a picture I.D. and all necessary documents.
May is Older Americans Month, an opportunity to recognize the contributions and achievements of older Americans. The theme for 2012 is “Never Too Old to Play,” a theme that encourages older Americans to stay engaged, active and involved in their own lives and their communities. The Culver City Senior Center has planned many events and activities to celebrate Older Americans Month and to promote our proud traditions of creating opportunities for all of our seniors. Events include a talent show; an art show; live music performances; a Senior Health Fair; a Mother’s Day Tea, and more.
Public Works Department
• Mandatory Commercial Recycling - On October 5, 2011, Governor Brown signed in to law Assembly Bill 341 (AB 341). AB 341 requires all businesses that generate more than four cubic yards of trash per week and all apartment buildings with more than five units to recycle, beginning on July 1. The City’s standard dumpster size is three cubic yards, which means any business that has more than one trash collection per week (greater than four cubic yards) is required to recycle. To assist Culver City businesses that are mandated AB 341, the Public Works Department has hired a recycling consultant to meet with every business, starting this month.
• Expo Phase 2: Venice Boulevard Underpass (VBU) - Balfour Beatty, the Expo contractor for the VBU segment of the Phase 2 Project, anticipates starting work in the Venice Boulevard right-of-way (ROW) between Culver Boulevard and Helms Avenue in late May 21. The VBU project will include utility relocations, construction of the light rail aerial structure over Venice Boulevard, and the widening of Venice Boulevard to implement required mitigation measures. The VBU project is anticipated to take 18 to 24 months. Due to the project’s complexities, it will be constructed in stages.
Balfour Beatty will provide notice through Changeable Message Signs placed throughout the impacted area; hand-delivered written notices to the surrounding community; and e-mail notices. City staff will also place the notices on the City websites and provide e-mail notices to the City’s notification list.