Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

Farewell to Miracle Mile Trees

Miracle Mile Civic Coalition Members Gather at Urban Lights at LACAMA and bid Farewell to 82 trees

Members of the Miracle Mile Civic Coalition gathered Tuesday at LACMA’s Urban Lights to bid farewell to the 82 trees that are slated to be removed during the Metro Purple Line construction now underway along Wilshire Blvd.

“We are here today to remember these trees and thank them for their service to our community,” said Lyn MacEwen Cohen, founder of the Miracle Mile Civic Coalition, which installed the trees along the street and in the medians 25 years ago as part of the revitalization of the Miracle Mile section of Wilshire Blvd between La Brea and Fairfax Avenue. “Eighty-two percent of the property owners agreed to pay additional property taxes to create these medians and care for these trees. As the Miracle Mile Residential Association looks at an HPOZ to protect its historic architecture, we hope we can develop protections for our historic landscape and scenic corridor.”

Randy Murphy, Director of Operations and Facility Planning at LACMA, and current chair of the civic coalition’s  Median Tree Committee, said he was proud to be part of the efforts to transform Wilshire Blvd., and acknowledged the efforts of Cohen and others who began the work in 1990, catalyzed by the efforts of the Los Angeles Conservancy to save Desmond’s Department store from demolition.

Joining Murphy and Cohen was Steve Kramer, President of the Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce, who moved his law practice to the Miracle Mile from Century City in 1991, before the revitalization efforts.

“The trees revitalized this area and now good things are happening here. Though now it will be a bit bumpy with the construction, these are good things,” said Kramer.

Steve Rosenthal, President of Wilshire Community Police Council, read Joyce Kilmer’s classic poem, “Trees” and Shirley Houston, from LACMA, read a statement from “Betty,” one of the trees. LAPD Officer Charles Thomas said he was pleased to be there to support Cohen, and that two of the trees are being relocated to the LAPD Wilshire Division.

Kasey Shuda, Construction Relations Manager for Metro Purple Line Extension, commended the group as good community partners with Metro Rail and looked forward to continuing through the impact of the construction work.

Wally Marks, Vice President of the Miracle Mile Civic Coalition; Meg McComb, Executive Director of the Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce; Adam Lev, The Ratkovich Company; Jane Gilman, founding publisher of the Larchmont Chronicle, and Debora Gillman, activities director at Park La Brea, also participated in the farewell.

Cohen expressed her appreciation to Metro Rail’s Scott McDonald for his personal efforts to save more trees. She promised to be watchful and looked forward to the replacement of the trees at the two-to-one ratio promised by Metro Rail upon completion of the project in 2023.


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Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard is the publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

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