Vons plans to build a shopping center at the site, but what stopped it was an "alley vacation," which is the time given to a developer to develop an alley or a portion of it prior to purchasing the developed area from the city and integrating it into the development’s larger plan. Von's "alley vacation" expired in April, which is what shut down construction that had begun in January.
Click here to read more about why construction was stopped.
The Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council voted at its August meeting to send a letter of support of the alleyway vacation as long as a list of 31 conditions were attached to it by Councilmember Jose Huizar. However, as Council Vice President David Greene explained at the ERNC's Sept. 3 meeting, the letter still had not been sent, and he explained why.
Since the August vote, Greene said, seven of the 31 conditions were included in a letter from Huizar attached to the Vons alley vacation application, but the rest were not included in the letter because Vons has already incorporated them into its building plans. The catch is that no one on the council has actually seen the plans to verify that they have been included.
"The rest were included in the Vons building plans but we do not have access to the Vons building plans for a regular person to look at," Greene said. "We would need permission from both the owner of the property and the architect which I don’t think anyone on this board has the time to do."
Nate Hayward, field deputy for Huizar, told the council he had seen the plans and that they do in fact incorporate the conditions the council requested.
"I’ve seen the plans. I wish I could show you, I just legally can’t without their permission," Hayward said.
Hayward also said Vons is anxious to start construction again.
"They are probably millions of dollars in the hole right now," Hayward said. "They’re just looking at us like, pleading, 'Hey, let us start again.' But what we really need to figure out is, we want to do something that makes sense, that’s safe, and that also isn’t going to take six years."Greene updated the council and said a new letter would be sent that would outline for the record all 31 conditions the council wanted to see in the plans, since the conditions would no longer be directly listed in Huizar's letter.
Below are the 31 conditions that will be listed in the letter, according the the ERNC's website.
1. Improve La Loma Road between Figueroa Street and Colorado Boulevard by road widening and/or restriping to the satisfaction of the Department of Transportation
2. Move the electrical room of building “B” further to the west and create a landscape area at the corner of Figueroa and La Loma
3. Provide bike racks outside both new buildings and existing grocery store.
4. Provide staircase for pedestrian access from La Loma Road near the rear of building “A”
5. Install a staircase north of building “B” to provide access to La Loma Road with additional hardscape and landscaping at the bottom of the stairs to enhance the pedestrian environment.
6. Install a staircase east of building “B” to provide access to Figueroa Street with additional hardscape and landscaping at the bottom of the stairs to enhance the pedestrian environment.
7. Provide an ADA accessible entrance to the property from the Figueroa Street
8. Provide a design option for a rear entrance on building “B” facing the La Loma Road and Figueroa intersection for the consideration of potential tenants.
9. Install seating at the public plaza behind building “B” on the corner of La Loma Road and Figueroa Street
10. Install a no-vehicle traffic buffer area in front of the existing grocery store for better pedestrian visibility.
11. Install a cart containment system to prevent carts from being taken
off the property.
12. Provide a security plan for the existing store and new development
to the satisfaction of CD 14 and LAPD
13. Provide and maintain new decorative mosaic trash receptacles at each pedestrian point of access to the site, including those on the public right of way.
14. Maintain sidewalks along the perimeter of the facility in a clean and sanitary manner including the abatement of weeds, graffiti, trash and other unsightly items.
15. Incorporate the (2) historic Helms Baker crests into the facade design of building “B” at the corner of La Loma Road and Figueroa street with a plaques on the East face of building ”B” that provides cultural-historical information about the former Helms Bakery building.
16. Existing Vons to undergo premium upgrade and remodel with regards to the interior products, fixtures, design elements, lighting, and layout.
17. Use stone treatments and facade elements consistently throughout all new and existing buildings on the premises.
18. Place any recycling center in the rear of the existing building away from La Loma Road and Figueroa Street.
19. Plant 24 inch box trees (8-10 feet tall) in the tree wells in the parking lot the satisfaction of the Urban Forestry Division.
20. Install an ‘Eagle Rock Monument’ at the public plaza behind building “B” on the corner of La Loma Road and Figueroa Street
21. Plant native and drought tolerant plants around the perimeter of the facility and in landscaped areas and seasonal planter beds throughout the parking lot and along all pedestrian walkways.
22. Install an irrigation system to ensure trees, shrubs and plants throughout the property, including those installed in the parking lot are maintained.
23. Install vegetative treatment on the wall between subject site and adjacent residential properties.
24. Install new pedestrian-scale lighting on the facility that faces downward and has a design consistent with the character of the facility and of the neighborhood.
25. Install street lighting around the facility that illuminates vehicular and pedestrian access, faces downward and has a design consistent with the character of the facility and of the neighborhood
26. Install architectural facade lighting to illuminate architectural features of the buildings and enhance the pedestrian environment.
27. Install pedestrian-scale and security lighting at the public plaza behind building “B” on the corner of La Loma Road and Figueroa Street
28. Maintain construction fence free of debris and graffiti
29. Maintain right of way adjacent to construction fence free of trash, dirt, and construction related debris on a daily basis.
30. Relocate trailer and portable toilets to the back of existing grocery
building away from neighboring residential properties.
31. Prepare a poster or board with project information and renderings regarding project construction to be posted on the interior of the existing grocery store.