As the city of Inglewood continues to quietly push to build an automated people mover (APM), that will hover over Market Street, the Los Angeles Conservancy has submitted comments regarding the destruction of certain long-time businesses along the proposed route.
The two major structures of concern are Broadway Federal Bank and the historic Fox Theatre.
There is only one downtown for Inglewood that represents the full breadth of the city’s storied past and, as an independent historic resource, it will be significantly and adversely impacted by the proposed APM project.
The conservancy has suggested designating the entire street historic stating the plan contradicts Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts “vision” for the street.
By constructing the APM through Downtown’s Market Street the City will certainly create even more hardships for these operators rather than the benefits the Draft EIR touts. In a 2019 interview with Curbed Los Angeles, Mayor James T. Butts stated, “the goal is to make Market Street in the image of Old Town Pasadena.” If this remains the vision, the Inglewood Transit Connector Project and the APM seems to be in conflict with such goals.
New businesses continue to open on Market Street, while other structures are for sale with astronomical asking prices.
The Wood BBQ, is a fast growing eatery on the north end of Market Street, not far from Broadway Federal. The Soul Food Shack, and The Dime, will come on line by the end of the year. Existing businesses like Stuff I Eat and Rusty Pot Cafe, have enjoyed success as the early eateries open on the deserted street. They will all bear the brunt of the impending construction.
During Councilwoman Dionne Faulk’s September 2 Town Hall, she was asked where the City is on the funding for the transit connector. Her liaison, Lori Penix, who doubles as a realtor, had this to say.
“The City is currently preparing federal environment documents to pursue Federal Transportation Administration funds to close the gap between moneys already raised,” Penix said. “The project is currently on pace, if approved and funding available, to be completed before the Olympics.”
What’s the fate of the businesses?
Talk to business owners along Crenshaw Blvd. who were impacted, and squeezed out during the building of the Crenshaw/LAX rail line. Their biggest hurdle was having up to date books to prove their loss of income related to the construction.