The greater Hancock Park area is known for its high-end historic homes, and also for its crummy streets. The LA Times compiled a report in May 2013 showing the area rated an outstanding “D-” , with more than half the streets rating an “F”. As our cars and bikes lurch into potholes and bump over swelling asphalt, you can’t help but wonder what bureaucracy and funding limits are preventing the repair and improvement of our roads.
Aaron Blevins wrote an interesting article this week published in The Park LaBrea News & Beverly Press interviewing Cindy Chvatal-Keane, president of the Hancock Park Homeowners Association on the concrete versus asphalt conundrum. The streets were originally poured in concrete and the Historic Preservation Overlay Zone (HPOZ), which preserves the historic nature of the community, requires that the streets be repaired in concrete. Problem is, the City no longer has the equipment or resources to repair our streets with poured concrete.
For the time being the Bureau of Street Services is repairing potholes with asphalt fill, and Chvatal-Keane notes “It’s like early Christmas” when the streets get the temporary repairs. But a solution has to be figured out, and Chvatal-Keane is quoted in the Park LaBrea News & Beverly Press:
“What we’re trying to do as a neighborhood is figure out a way to either create an assessment district … to repair in concrete or figure out a way to repair in asphalt and resurface in asphalt,” she said, adding that the association has picked up the tab on a number of services the city once offered, such as tree trimming.
Chvatal-Keane said the assessment would be based on a formula that would factor in square footage, among other things. She said the association hopes to have a survey sent out to residents in the next few weeks.
The homeowners association is also looking into “cool pavement” and other alternatives that are durable and look like concrete. Cool pavement refers to paving materials that reflect more solar energy, enhance water evaporation and remain cooler than conventional pavements, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
However, while the group determines whether it has a consensus for an assessment, it needs the city to provide cost estimates for the work, Chvatal-Keane said.
Information on what streets are scheduled for repair can be found at the Bureau of Street Services website.
Larchmont Buzz: Hancock Park Streets Rated D