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

Hancock Park Curb Construction Corrected

New HPOZ-compliant curb being installed at the southwest corner of Highland Avenue and 6th Street in Hancock Park.

Earlier this week, the Buzz learned that a curb being replaced at Highland Avenue and 6th Street was not the approved design that had been established by the city and conformed to the Hancock Park Historic Preservation Overlay Zone. Hancock Park’s streets and sidewalks are included in its neighborhood HPOZ, a rarity for many of the city’s HPOZs. As a result, the neighborhood requires replacement of concrete streets and maintenance of the uniform design for sidewalks and curbs.

Bureau of Street Services crews were replacing the curb on the southeast corner of Highland Avenue and 6th Street with a curb design that would not have matched any others in the neighborhood and was not compliant with the neighborhood’s HPOZ, explained Cindy Chvatal-Keane, president of the Hancock Park Homeowners Association.

Non-compliant curb that was installed on Monday and will be replaced with the compliant design.

Chvatal-Keane told the Buzz she alerted the crews working on the job and then contacted field staff at CD5. After several rounds of phone calls, the work on the curb was stopped until the matter could be sorted out.

“Yes, our office has been made aware of the concerns, and are appreciative,” Leo Daube, Communications Director for CD5, told the Buzz on Monday. “We are currently working with BSS and City Planning to ensure all of the existing regulations are upheld where applicable, including the HPOZ.”

Chvatal-Keane provided CD5 District Director George Hakopiants with the design documents and the letter of determination from City Planning Department’s Office of Historic Resources, which Hakopiants then provided to the Bureau of Engineering. Hakopiants told the Buzz that once BOE was aware of the design precedent, they checked back through their records and agreed the Hancock Park HOA was correct. BOE agreed the design being implemented was incorrect and provided new plans to the BSS crew working on the curb. When we checked today, the crews were back working on the curbs, this time with the HPOZ-compliant design.

“We are grateful the HPOZ design will be implemented and they will restore the curb to the original configuration,” said Chvatal-Keane. Apparently a similar situation occurred in 2017, when crews installed the wrong curb over the weekend and were required to remove and replace it. “This time were were able to avoid that expense because we stopped the work,” she said.

“These designs meet the city, federal and state ADA requirements and were approved by the City in 2015 for Hancock Park,” Chvatal-Keane told the Buzz. “When the City included the streets, the trees, curbs and the sidewalks in the HPOZ preservation plan, they did that for a reason, to preserve the streetscape as well as the architecture and so everything must be compliant with those guidelines.”

Hancock Park HPOZ-compliant design approved by the City in 2015.
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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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