Part of MacArthur Park Closed for 10 Weeks – NBC Los Angeles

on Oct15
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The lakeside portion of MacArthur Park will be closed for 10 weeks as maintenance crews work on projects in that area of the park west of downtown Los Angeles.

The section of the park between Alvarado and Park View streets and Wilshire Boulevard and Seventh Street will be closed for the projects. Councilman Gil Cedillo’s office said they began offering shelter options to people living in the park starting in January, and as of Wednesday, 257 people had been moved indoors.

Teams with the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority and People Assisting The Homeless have been handling the outreach operation, and the park’s residents were offered Project Roomkey placements in hotels and motels in the mid-downtown area, said Cedillo’s Deputy District Director Jose Rodriguez.

During the closure, the Department of Recreation and Parks will conduct electrical repairs, lighting repairs and upgrades, landscape reseeding, painting, irrigation repairs and upgrades, signage replacements and park furniture repairs and replacement.

Rodriguez added that people living in the park would not be stopped from relocating to the north side of the park, across Wilshire, during the south side’s closure, and the city will continue outreach and trash collection to those unhoused residents.

The move to close the park drew criticism from housing advocates on Twitter, comparing the closure to that of Echo Park in March. While Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, who oversaw that operation, touted it as a successful housing operation.

Protesters who took to the Echo Park neighborhood in March blasted the city for forcing the park’s residents out of an area that had grown into what they called a supportive community — including a vegetable garden, working showers and a shared kitchen. In response to protests, hundreds of officers descended on the neighborhood and 182 people were arrested.

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