The long desired Working Group Master Plan was recently adopted by the Los Angeles Parks Commission as a Vision Plan. Developed by the community volunteer working group seated by Councilmember Tom LaBonge five years ago, the panel represented most major park stakeholders including the LFIA. The project was to reconceive the master plan proposed by the Melendrez Group, which was universally rejected as inappropriate for Griffith Park.
The modified Department of Recreation and Parks’ Vision Plan means that America’s largest city park continues to operate without a Master Plan, which is disappointing to many park supporters. Nevertheless, the Vision Plan offers an appropriate conservation guide to control development going forward.
The newly seated Garcetti-appointed Parks Commission additionally approved two other projects for Griffith Park. The long discussed youth baseball fields proposal for Crystal Springs were adopted with the stipulation that they also be available to “pick up” youth players, not just organized leagues.
In addition, a permanent outdoor performance stage was approved for the Old Zoo location. For the past years, the site has been home to the popular free Shakespeare summer performances and free symphonic concerts by the Symphony In the Glen orchestra.
The LFIA supported both projects with the qualification that while Griffith Park continues to attract numerous worthy projects, it is a limited and ecologically fragile environment. The Park Commission must be selective in approving proposals, or Griffith Park’s urban wilderness environment will be threatened.
Councilmember Tom LaBonge presented LFIA President Chris Laib with a commendation to thank the LFIA for their contribution to the Vision Plan.