City of Inglewood District 2 Councilman Alex Padilla’s days are numbered, as an elected official, if the city approves a special use permit (SUP) for a proposed 7-Eleven at the corner of 64th and LaBrea. Inglewood Planning Commissioner for District 2, David Rice, has shared with 2UrbanGirls he will entertain running for the seat.
Homeowners who live within 1000 ft of the proposed 8 pump gas station, that also wishes to sell beer and wine, have organized amongst themselves on the popular neighborhood app, NextDoor. They also outreached to this author to amplify their message.
“We want sustainable and smart planning, with input from the community, before the process begins, not after. The city needs to resume evening council meeting so we can attend after work.“Chadonna McClain
Residents have come forward, during public comment, at every city council meeting, since October, in protest of the project. The city then arranged a community meeting, with 7-Eleven executives, that appeared to be staged by Inglewood Mayor James Butts and Padilla.
“The city is out of compliance with CEQA. This site was a former gas station turned into Church’s chicken. Standards for closing down stations was different when this gas station closed. How does Eddy Ikemefuna (Sr. Planner for the city of Inglewood) justify the CEQA exemption?”Jim Kearns, architect
Residents have contacted the city’s Code Enforcement department, who is refusing to issue code violations to the owner of the site for neglect, but remark that small business owners are being hounded for matters like homeless people on their property.
“The city code enforcement office picks and chooses who they go after. My friend is cited regularly by Carmen Hayes, with no supporting documentation, while this owner (Church’s chicken site) isn’t being made to clean up the graffiti, abandoned cars and whatnot when they should be being fined $1000 per day!”Frustrated on 64th Street
The meeting was held by campaign donors to Mayor Butts and one of which was attached to a nefarious home purchase the city approved at an emergency city council meeting last week. Ted Brass, of Brass and Brass real estate, opened the meeting to a non enthusiastic crowd.
Attendance was standing room only and one by one, residents spoke against the proposal to sell beer and wine, and gas, along LaBrea, who already has six gas stations between Slauson and Centinela.
“We don’t need another gas station, along a corner where there is already excessive congestion. Where is the traffic study?”Derek Brown, resident
The individuals tasked with squashing community dissent, by offering the residents a chance to list their “top 4” wants for the project to be approved was met with skepticism. Residents wanted assurance promises would be kept. Other projects, these individuals have constructed around the city, have had the residents ask for items, for the company to neglect.
Michael Stewart, who helped coordinate the evenings meeting, shared with 2UrbanGirls that he helped bring in the 99cent store at 85th and Crenshaw. The residents didn’t want the project because of the influx of traffic and delivery route concerns.
The residents conceded to having more lighting put on 85th Street that has since fell into disrepair. Councilman George Dotson and the city have failed to ensure the lights stay on and are functioning as the residents and company agreed to for approval. These are legitimate concerns the residents have about 7-Eleven not keeping promises to them.
2UrbanGirls drove to the 99cent store in question, after last nights meeting, and as you see in the photos, light bulbs are burnt out and some posts are missing lights all together. We went back this morning for clearer photos.
“This project is a deal breaker and being forced down our threats as if it’s already a “done deal” and if 7-Eleven is granted this SUP I won’t be voting for Alex Padilla next year.”Justin Philburn, resident
2UrbanGirls was able to speak to nearly half of the 40 residents assembled who all stated emphatically, they would not support the re-election of Alex Padilla if he didn’t stand up for the community.
Several residents commented, off the record, that Padilla lacks a backbone and is afraid of Mayor Butts having him removed from council if he supported the residents. “Chili cook-off’s and car shows don’t buy our silence” said one woman who refused to be identified.
“I am insulted by this presentation by Armen Ross as he doesn’t live and/or travel down LaBrea and has no idea of the traffic nightmares we already face.”Bobbie Smith Harville, resident
The Inglewood Planning Commission will take up this issue on December 4th at 7pm in Inglewood City Hall.
Inglewood Planning Commissioner David Rice is a highly respected business owner in the city of Inglewood. He owns Spa 313 on LaBrea near Florence and is the creator of the Taste of Inglewood. Rice is also the lone dissenting voice on the planing commission who votes based on what the community wants.
We approached him last week about the communities dissension of the planned 7-Eleven and he is well aware of their concerns. When asked if he would consider running against Alex Padilla, he was cautious with his response.
“Councilman Padilla appointed me to the commission, however, if the community is seeking more fair and balanced representation, then by all means I would consider it.”David Rice
Councilman Padilla the ball is in your court.