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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Is a sequel to Richard Meruelo's Taylor Yard Land Swindle in the works?

A "happy" Los Angeles River between the Two Freeway on the west and the Pasadena Freeway on the east.
While the LA River smiles in the Google Image above, Northeast Los Angeles environmentalists are quickly mobilising to counter a possible replay of the infamous Developer and Mayor Antonio Villar  Mayoral Campaign Financer Richard Meruelo "Taylor Yard LAUSD Land Deal". 
A key 44 acre parcel of the former Southern/Union Pacific Taylor Yard complex that once contain the roundhouse and engine house, is now being pursuit by the Trammell Crow Company for industrial development. Trammell Crow is owned by CB Richard Ellis which possesses vast tracts of property city wide and nationally and just signed a deal with CRA to purchase the controversial Cleantech site downstream from Taylor Yard for $15.4 million. 
With Trammell Crow entering into a "purchase option agreement" with property owner Union Pacific, for the intent of developing the parcel for industrial use, activists are opening speculating whether this is a Meruelo-like attempt to buy sought-after land and sell for a quick profit to the likes of the California State Parks.
The State Parks has already purchase 18 acres in the area and had set aside financial resources to purchase the 44 arces G-2 Parcel and rehabilitate to property for public usage.
The fact that this is taking place within CD 1 City Councilman Ed Reyes domain and that Reyes is the Chairperson of the PLUM Committee at City Hall, is raising eyebrows about nefarious dealings along the banks of Councilman Reyes's "Legacy Project".
** Read email from Northeast Activists after the jump.
From: David Brunk <dblovesla@sbcglobal.net>
Date: December 26, 2011 2:56:55 PM PST
To: NortheastLA@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [NortheastLA] A State park at Taylor Yard
Reply-To: NortheastLA@yahoogroups.com
Dear Notheast neighbors,
Rio deLosAngeles State Park would never have been realized without the
collective work and will of the surrounding communities, river activists, and
conservation groups. The fulfillment of the Park Master Plan means extending
tyhe park to the banks of the LosAngeles River, with the acquisition of Taylor
Yard's 44 acre Parcel G2.
Now we need your help to ensure that Parcel G2 is not instead, developed into an
industrial site, by signing an ONLINE PETITION.
For river activists , Taylor Yard, a former Union Pacific railroad yard with
over two miles of Los Angeles River frontage, has always represented the brass
ring .It is the largest undeveloped parcel on the river, presenting
extraordinary opportunities for river restoration, stormwater retention in the
aquifer, recreational resources, and economic revitalization for the densely
populated, underserved adjacent communities.
California State Parks has committed to facilitating this integrated vision,
which has since been widely adopted by numerous elected officials and government
After a decade of controversy, lawsuits a and relentless community activism,
phaser one of Rio de Los Angeles State Park-the first new State Park in Los
Angeles in many years- opened to the public on Earth Day 2007.
The Union Pacific Railroad has taken a phased approach to selling off parcels at
taylor Yard.
The State purchased 18 acres of riverfront when it became available in 2003 The
raiolraod finally demolished the facilities at parcel G2 in 2009, but various
factors have thus far complicated public acquisition.
Now Trammell Crow Company has entered into a purchase option agreement with the
stated intention of developing G2 for industial use. Given the site's severe
access constraints and its proximity to the park, the new High School, and the
river would make developing anything other than open space very difficult, some
have speculated that they plan to purchase the land, then sell it to the state
in order to to realize a substantial, unearned profit.This purchase option
expires at the end of 2011.
(The problem being that any millions of profit to Trammell Crow Company come at
the expense of a cash poor Park's budget that will severely restrict restoration
and improvements to the property.)

Please sign the petition make Trammell Crow Company understand that the citizens
of Los Angeles and California prefer that they immediately drop their purchase
option so that State parks purchase may proceed.
Find the petition at Change.org---Http://OW.ly/83hHb
PROJECT' in their decade long effort to realize this historic environmental improvement for our city. 
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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