The new toddler play structure at Pan Pacific Park was officially opened by Mayor Karen Bass and CD5 Councilmember Katy Yaroslavsky at a ribbon cutting ceremony held early this morning. Officials from the LA Parks Foundation, the LA City Department of Recreation and Parks and Hackman Capital were on hand for the festivities.
The play structure replaced one that was damaged by vandalism last summer. A few months later, we reported that Hackman Capital Partners, owners of nearby Television City, donated more than $230,000 in funding to the Los Angeles Parks Foundation to repair the damaged playground. The new playground was completed in January of this year and has been in use since then, but the official ribbon cutting was delayed four times by rain and scheduling challenges.
LA Parks Foundation Executive Director Carolyn Ramsay welcomed community leaders and residents who had gathered for the ribbon saying, “We are here celebrating this new playground,” said Ramsay. “Thanks to the timely donation from Hackman Capital, we turned a sad situation into a joyful experience for the community. We were able turn it around in record time, with the new playground installed in a few months.
Jimmy Kim, General Manager of the City’s Department of Recreation of Parks, thanked Bass and Yaroslavsky for their support of the parks.
“These types of play structures are community magnets,” said Kim. “I want to thank Michael Hackman and Hackman Capital Partners for their immediate donation, and Carolyn Ramsay and the LA Parks Foundation for their support of over 500 city parks,” added Kim.
Michael Hackman, CEO of Hackman Capital Partners said it was an absolute pleasure working with Ramsay and the entire parks and recreation team. Hackman said community involvement is very important to him and his company. He credited Zach Sokoloff, Hackman Capital Partners Senior Vice President, for suggesting the donation when they learned of the destruction of the play structure.
“Television City has been part of the community for the past 70 years, and that is very important to us,” said Hackman, adding that he is very excited about the future of the city under the leadership of Mayor Bass and Councilmember Yaroslavsky.
Meanwhile, Yaroslavsky said this was one of her family’s favorite parks, and a really important park in our community.
“People forget this, but right across the street is the largest community of renters this side of the Mississippi,” said Yaroslavsky, referring to Park La Brea and the nearby neighborhoods filled with residents who don’t all have backyards to play in, making places like Pan Pacific Park so important to the life of the city.
“Pan Pacific Park is one of the true gems of Los Angles,” said Yaroslavsky. “It’s where I had my swearing in because it’s the heart of the district, and I see it as one of the great public spaces in Los Angeles.” She thanked Mr. Hackman and Hackman Capital Partners for moving quickly to donate the funds enabling the city to quickly open the park up to local families.
In her remarks, Mayor Bass said the reopening of the playground was a “example of the public and private sectors coming together to get something done for our city. Parks like Pan Pacific make our communities healthier and more livable.” And that’s why, she said, the city will continue to work to make sure parks are available for all Angelenos.
Finally, Bass also presented two certificates to Michael Hancock and Zach Sokoloff for their generous support in completing the project. Officials then gathered with local children enjoying the playground to officially cut the ribbon.