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Help Us Raise $500 for Safe Streets

We’re excited to be co-hosting this event on Sunday, and we hope you can make it! Mar Vista Voice is raising $500 to support Streets for All’s fight for a greener, more sustainable and more equitable Los Angeles. Like SFA, we believe that people should be able to move around our city safely, regardless of their race, income, zip code, or ability. To help us meet our host donation goal, Venmo @mvv-mutualaid and write “SFA” in the comment. If you’d like to attend on Sunday, go to

Our Guide to Venice Blvd

Well, it has come to pass. The real-estate-backed conservative majority on the Culver City Council decided to strip the downtown corridor of the safety and mobility features piloted by the MOVE Culver City program, which include a bus-only lane and a bike lane.

Since its implementation, the MOVE pilot has been a success by all metrics. Downtown Culver City has undergone a type of renaissance, becoming a destination for old and new visitors thanks to increased accessibility. Because folks can now use transit or get around safely by bike or foot, they can also spend more time and money in downtown Culver.

Needless to say, the gutting of MOVE is a disastrous step backward considering the epidemic of traffic violence that plagues our streets and the looming climate apocalypse driven by our car dependent infrastructure and the elected officials unable or unwilling to lead us into a liveable future. 

There is a glimmer of hope, however, for a new destination on the Westside accessible by transit bike or foot: the new Venice Blvd. The street’s new configuration is slated to be completed this month and will include long-overdue safety and mobility improvements like a bus-only lane and a parking-protected bike lane. While there are still major concerns about the road, these new safety and mobility improvements have the potential to be life-changing for the thousands of Angelenos that use Venice Blvd. 

As one of LA’s busiest thoroughfares, the businesses and spaces on Venice Blvd reflect the rich diversity of the communities it serves, both as a road and as a local landmark for adjacent neighborhoods. From some of the most authentic Indian cuisine to trendy coffee shops and independent florists, beauty services like eyebrow threading or the many food trucks that line the streets -this stretch of road is vital and essential to residents of communities like West Adams, Palms and Mar Vista.

We believe that with proper implementation, maintenance and continuous attention to user feedback, the new safety and mobility improvements can turn this street from one of the deadliest in the city to a more liveable part of our everyday life. We hope that Councilmembers Heather Hutt, Katy Yaroslavsky and Traci Park realize the importance and potential of this new project and will work together with LA Streets, LADOT and municipal and county transit agencies to ensure the success of the new Venice Blvd.

In this map you can find some of our favorite spots on or off Venice Blvd, easily accessible by foot, bike or transit. These entries are suggestions from real Venice Blvd users who already frequent these spots by transit, foot or bike. We hope that this guide will encourage you to try new places or consider visiting old favorites via transit, bike or foot! 

Barrington Plaza Tenants Fight Back 

The largest mass eviction in LA is underway right here on the Westside, where Douglas Emmet is evicting nearly 600 rent-controlled households at Barrington Plaza. The multi-billion dollar real estate investment trust based in Santa Monica is invoking the Ellis Act to boot these tenants in the middle of a homelessness crisis. And after shoveling $566,000 into the Traci Park campaign for CD11, it’s no wonder our Councilmember is rolling over for this raw deal and hanging her constituents out to dry. 

Douglas Emmett says the move is necessary to install sprinklers and other safety equipment–something the company has refused to do for decades, despite multiple deadly fires. Under the Ellis Act, landlords can remove tenants from rent-controlled apartments only if the building is taken off the rental market. 

But experts contend that the company is improperly applying the Ellis Act, and that it can make the upgrades without permanently displacing nearly 1,000 people and taking desperately needed affordable housing off the market. 

The tenants are fighting back. They have formed a tenants association and can use your support. Check out their website here.

Traci Targets Vehicle Dwellers

CD11 Councilmember Traci Park is ramping up efforts to crack down on people living in their vehicles. Her multi-pronged attack on vehicle dwellers includes prohibiting people from parking on certain streets during sleeping hours (motion 1 and 2), and making it illegal to rent RVs. 

For so many who are priced out of traditional rental housing, a vehicle is the next logical, safe choice. This turns into a longer-term solution due to lack of low-income housing in Los Angeles. There is no LA City wide program supporting vehicle repairs or transition from inoperative RVs into housing. And the "Safe Parking" program is outrageously insufficient compared to the existing and projected numbers of vehicle-housed in LA. Meanwhile, public parking lots sit empty every night. 

Instead of real solutions, Los Angeles pays DOT or LAPD to enforce parking restrictions like the Oversized Vehicle Ordinance (OVO) LAMC 80.69.4. This ordinance bans oversize vehicles from designated street segments in the middle o

Park’s ban on renting RVs to people in need is also terrible policy. The councilmember wants you to believe she’s concerned about the well-being of unhoused folks who rent RVs because they can’t afford an apartment or an RV of their own. In this motion, she decries so-called “van-lords” who “capitalize on the vulnerability” of the unhoused by renting RVs to poor people (i.e. they help folks the city has completely abandoned). This is disingenuous at best. 

If Park cared about people living in rented RVs that are “in grave disrepair, with unsanitary and somewhat dangerous conditions,” she’d propose legislation ensuring that rented RVs meet habitability standards and demand city funding to make it happen. Instead, she’s making it illegal to rent RVs for people to live in. 

Click here to take action.

Fatty & Beethoven

Two new markets in Mar Vista! 

We know and love David Kuo’s wildly successful Little Fatty in downtown MV, so couldn’t wait to try Kuo’s latest: Fatty Mart. This is a beautiful space that goes beyond the Taiwanese staples offered around the corner. It includes a market, hot food bar, takeaway counter and on-site dining. You can grab drinks, produce, a slice of pizza, full dinner meals for heating at home, and even a coffee and pastry in the morning.  Highly recommend.

We’ll also soon see a revived Beethoven Market, thanks to Mar Vista resident and restaurateur Jeremy Adler. Adler is co-partner of Cobi’s in Santa Monica, and bought the the iconic market with plans to convert it into a cafe and market that will include an outdoor seating area. 

Mar Vista Voice Joins Neighbors & Community Leaders In Endorsing Mar Vista Progress for MVCC 2023

In this election, we’re excited to endorse MAR VISTA PROGRESS, a group of seven progressive candidates with a vision for making our neighborhood more equitable and engaged. Mar Vista Progress is endorsed by Mar Vista neighbors like you, as well as community leaders like former City Council candidates for CD11 and CD5 Erin Darling, Scott Epstein and Jimmy Biblarz, as well as former Culver City Mayor Daniel Lee. Click here to check out the endorsements MVP has secured thus far.

Hi Friends,

We’re checking in with a couple reminders about important local elections with deadlines just around the corner.


If you are a registered Democrat, please request your ballot for the party's assembly delegate elections. There is a right-wing slate running to represent Mar Vista, so it's more important than ever for us to make sure everyone votes in this ultra local election. We’ll be announcing the slates we support in the next few weeks. As a reminder, your ballot will not arrive automatically. You must request a ballot here before December 31st:


Neighborhood Council elections are back! Join us next Thursday 12/29 at 7:30pm for an orientation about this important local election. We’ll cover how to vote, how to support progressive candidates, how to run, and what it’s like to serve. Mar Vista Community Council is one of the most important NCs in the entire city system, so don’t miss this opportunity to support progressive candidates! The filing deadline to run for MVCC is January 10th. Click here to register for the orientation next Thursday:

Thanks as always for helping us raise the voices of ALL Mar Vistans. Happy Holidays!


Dear Friends,

Election Day is one week away, and only 13.4% of eligible voters in our district have cast their ballots. That means there are a lot of people here in Mar Vista who need an extra nudge to get to the polls, and every conversation matters. You can make a huge difference by talking to voters at the doors, on the phone, and at Vote Centers. Read on to learn about how you can help.

Also in this issue:

THE FED TAPES: Our statement on the leaked Fed tapes is set forth below. We stand with the Black, indigenous, AAPI & LGBTQ+ Angelenos communities—as well Mike Bonin—as we demand resignations and fight for accountability at City Hall.

ELECTIONS: The campaigns to elect Erin Darling to City Council for CD11 and Kenneth Mejia as City Controller, and to pass the United to House LA ballot measure are in the final stretch. Talking to voters is how we win, so please consider volunteering this week!

A STARK CHOICE: In his latest piece for Knock LA, Steven Louis breaks down what’s at stake in the race for CD11 between civil rights attorney Erin Darling and anti-civil rights attorney Traci Park.

ENVIRONMENT: We must take action to stop the proposed $800 million hydrogen scam at Scattergood Gas Plant. This “green washing” project will cause serious environmental harm and is simply a way to perpetuate the fossil fuel industry at at time when we should be shutting it down.

TRANSIT: LADOT opted to delay life-saving infrastructure improvements on Venice Blvd west of Beethoven, in part due to opposition from a car-obsessed vocal minority in Venice and Mar Vista.

EDUCATION: Applications for LAUSD’s E-Choices program are open until November 18th. Check out the Mar Vista Schools page of our website for more information! Also in local schools news, LAUSD will not be moving forward with Richland Middle School.

MUTUAL AID: Our friends at Free Food Collective and Palms Unhoused Mutual Aid recently launched a new food recovery effort to reduce food waste and serve unhoused neighbors throughout Mar Vista and Palms.

SENIORS: Mar Vista Voice has enrolled hundreds of seniors in the City’s free meals program and folks are loving it. Sign up today!

Thanks as always for helping us raise the voices of ALL Mar Vistans!


Resignations Are Not Enough

(Released October 11, 2022) Mar Vista Voice joins the calls for the immediate resignations of City Council members Nury Martinez, Kevin de Leon and Gil Cedillo for their shameful, racist comments revealed in a recording obtained by Knock LA over the weekend.

We stand with the thousands of Black, indigenous, AAPI and LGBTQ+ Angelenos who were attacked by the same Councilmembers who are supposed to represent them. We stand with Councilmember Mike Bonin and his family, and express our sincerest support during this time.

Resignations are not enough though. The racism and classicism revealed in the recordings makes it clear that anti-Black ideology has played a central role in these Councilmembers’ policymaking.

We are also calling first (1) for a thorough investigation into the corrupt redistricting process since, as evidenced in the tapes, anti-renter and anti-Black sentiments were central to the process. And secondly, (2) City Council must revisit policy decisions that continue to predominantly affect working-class and Black Angelenos through state violence, criminalization and incarceration, including:

Given the truly appalling nature of the Knock LA revelations, we expect the resignations of Nury Martinez, Kevin de Leon and Gil Cedillo to be imminent—surely no person would expect to hold a position of power after such vile words have come to light. However, accepting their resignations without a deep analysis of the ongoing harm that their policies are causing and the damage they continue to inflict would be a disservice and a failure to the predominantly working-class and Black Angelenos most affected.

We hold that solidarity across our differences is vital for overcoming the legacy of racism that permeates all levels of American society. Any person who defends or obfuscates this truth is unfit to lead and should remain far from any position of power. Angelenos deserve leaders with integrity, accountability to those they represent, and a just vision for our city’s future.

Knock Every Door!

Almost 100 Erin Darling volunteers convened at the Laemmle Royal Theater on Saturday for “All Out for the Westside”, a celebration of Erin Darling’s campaign for City Council and launch of GOTV. After watching campaign videos on the big screen, supporters fanned out across the district to talk to voters.

There’s only one week left in this crucial election, and less than 15% of eligible voters have cast their ballots in our district. When we talk to voters, it’s clear that many of our neighbors are still undecided or simply unaware of the local races. And when people learn about Erin Darling, Kenneth Mejia and Measure ULA, the pitch is easy. Consider getting involved—your voice can make all the difference!

Click HERE to volunteer for Erin Darling for CD11.

Click HERE to volunteer for Kenneth Mejia for City Controller.

Click HERE to volunteer for ULA.

No, There Aren’t Two “Progressive Options” in District 11’s City Council Race

The following excerpts are re-printed from a recent article on Knock LA with permission from its author, Steven Louis. Click here to read Steven’s piece in full, and don’t forget to donate or subscribe to Knock LA, a vital local news source and the publisher/transcriber of the Fed tapes.

The CD11 race has gone to a runoff after June’s primary saw two attorneys-turned-rookie-campaigners, Erin Darling and Traci Park, collect a supermajority of votes. Darling, despite getting massively outspent by four different candidates, finished with 33.4% of the vote, while Park brought in 30%. Both candidates are vying for the seat held by Mike Bonin, who soundly defeated a recall effort this year but chose to prioritize his mental well-being over reelection.

The feverish recall efforts in this district are incompatible with statistics. While rents have almost doubled in a decade and unhoused populations continue to increase in both the city and county, CD 11 just reported a 38.5% drop in residents experiencing homelessness. Meanwhile, CD 11’s rates of violent crime, environmental degradation, teen pregnancy, and alcohol outlet concentration are all at least three times lower than the county average. While it still faces daunting inequities, CD 11 is, empirically speaking, about the highest quality-of-life in Los Angeles.

Since the summer, friends and neighbors have been asking me how to differentiate between two Democratic candidates, to which I’m compelled to say:

Traci Park’s career conservatism should instantly disqualify her from anyone’s consideration. She’s been a registered Republican for much of her adult life, and continues to work for and with prominent reactionaries across the state. Her candidacy’s origin story of mainlined grievance politics, combined with a callous résumé as a management-friendly corporate attorney, should at best render her a letter-to-the-editor type of crank.

This is someone who legally defended an Anaheim city manager for repeated racial harassment of his sole Black employee; Traci’s argument in Harrell v. City of Anaheim concluded that jokes about the employee’s genitalia and frequent use of the “N-word” were not actionable instances of harassment (fortunately, the judge disagreed). Her first job out of law school was with the very firm union-busting at Starbucks right now. The second place she worked is the RNC-paid firm currently union-busting at Duke University. According to the LA Times, she was a leading signature collector in Venice for the Bonin recall, which was funded largely by Trump sycophants and a Utah-based GOP operative.

A Park victory wouldn’t only guarantee the swift unraveling of our district’s tangible progress outlined above, it would also give cover for the city’s worst-faith actors to run future campaigns on outright deception with liberal imagery. And with all the six-figure developer donations that she’s breathlessly taking in, she would be a bettor’s odds-on favorite for “next councilmember to get federally investigated for pay-to-play.”

Traci Park is a viable Dem in the way that sunscreen is a hearty snack. It’s hard to overstate the hollow incoherence her victory would bring. And for whoever still needs to hear it, when Black leadership hosts an emergency press conference regarding your legal record of racism, you’re probably not a progressive!

If you Google “Traci Park,” it yields this top result:

This is confusing. Not the part about women having access to reproductive care, because that’s cool, nor the fact Park implies she’s personally pro-choice. What’s confusing is why Traci Park’s running on this issue without a single policy suggestion regarding abortion access or gender equity in her campaign’s official “PLANS.” These ads don’t even use the word “abortion.” And Park’s biggest financial supporters are fervent anti-choice donors, as we’ll see below. What gives? The most obvious answer: Traci Park needs blue voters to win this election, but she is not running a blue campaign.

She deploys a similar strategy with the public health crisis of homelessness. While Traci herself has repeatedly expressed that folks living on the street is inhumane (something that’s hard to argue against and rightfully tugs at Democratic sensibilities), her platform is largely centered on cutting spending from the LA Homeless Services Authority (with real Trump energy, Park announced on September 24 that she plans to audit LAHSA because she’s skeptical of its data) and enforcing new city ordinance 41.18, which tasks the most murderous police force in America with funneling people at encampments into jail cells (the fiscally-responsible Park has not said anything on record about the LAPD’s increased budget of $3.2 billion dollars, more than three times the allotment for homeless services). “The chaos that you see in Venice will inevitably arrive in your neighborhood soon enough,” she wrote in August. If this reads like a Herbalife-fueled “American Carnage” rant, that’s because it is. Traci doesn’t support a single housing project for unhoused people, as she struggled to even name one when asked during the Mar Vista Community Council forum on September 19.

“Park’s political activism began in late 2020, when she learned that the city planned to convert a Ramada Inn into a shelter for the homeless, across the street from her Spanish-style bungalow,” that LA Times piece says. Running for office off the many injustices of 2020 is certainly noble… considering the police murders of unarmed Black and Brown folks; the protest movements that resulted; a global pandemic that killed millions; natural disasters and record heat waves brought by climate catastrophe. Nope, she’s running because the city planned to convert a chain hotel into shelter space for those in need, as if her bungalow was some perverse Abe Lincoln log cabin.

Darling, in contrast, was a deputy federal public defender representing poor folks on the west side. His career began at the Eviction Defense Network. In all the ways that a boot-shining lawyer is a bad look for this seat, a public defender with experience in tenants’ rights is a fantastic one. The endorsements reflect as such: Eunisses Hernandez, who just won her CD 1 race over an incumbent without runoff; Dolores Huerta, the legendary labor leader; United Teachers Los Angeles and various other unions; the Los Angeles Times; California Working Families Party; the West LA Democrats; even a recommendation from Knock LA.

Darling certainly has my endorsement. Traci Park is wholly disingenuous for putting a (D) next to her name, and we cannot let her wield real power in this city. She was and is and forever will be a Republican, not only in title and individual voting record but in the totality of her professional existence.

We need your help to stop the hydrogen scam at Scattergood Gas Plant

In the past, we have come together to take on LADWP and won. We need that same kind of energy today. As we watch the reckoning at City Council expose the darkest part of politics, it is all of our work that usually brings the light. Right now, we are shining the light on the latest LADWP power grab: an $800 million dollar modernization of Scattergood Gas Plant to burn hydrogen while calling it “green”.

The letter linked below outlines the facts, communicates concerns and ultimately calls on City Councilmembers to vote no on the project (Council File 22-0932). The main points include hydrogen’s contribution to local air pollution, massive water demands, leakage, explosions and the alternatives that would bring real solutions to the climate crisis.

The main argument you will hear for green hydrogen power is the capacity to store solar and wind energy when the sun isn’t shining or the wind isn’t blowing. LADWP has even gone as far as to claim that it’s the best option in the face of increased wildfires and storms. Using the climate crisis to justify another dirty energy scheme with SoCalGas is disingenuous—and it’s going to work if we don’t push back hard.

Unfortunately, the hydrogen flood gates are already, open and we must hold back the tide until our communities have a say in a clean energy future that won’t leave anyone behind.

The first step is to ask organizations to sign on to this letter by November 14. So far, a small but mighty group of organizations have been able to hold back this terrible project. As of today, the next Energy, Climate Change, Environmental Justice, And Rivers Committee will not be voting on this item at their upcoming meeting this week. This is good news and shows what we can accomplish when we fight back. It also gives us time to get more organized.

Please ask your organization to sign on and get others to do the same.

In Solidarity,

Andrea Vega, Southern California Organizer, Food & Water Watch and Food & Water Action"

Vocal Minority Blocks Safety Improvements on Venice Blvd.

After an unprecedented level of community outreach and widespread support, LADOT will move forward with most components of the Venice Blvd. Safety and Mobility Project, including a new bus-only lane extending 2.5 miles from Inglewood Blvd. to Culver Blvd and protected bike lanes from Inglewood to National.

Unfortunately, the anti-bus, anti-cycling vocal minority in Mar Vista and Venice seems to have bullied the agency into delaying a key component of the plan: protected bike lanes stretching west from Mar Vista, from Beethoven to Lincoln. These safety improvements are sorely needed. Venice Blvd is on L.A.’s high injury network, a collection of streets with a high concentration of severe injuries and deaths. An average of 6 people die on this stretch of road every year, and there is simply no excuse for resisting efforts to make it safer for pedestrians and cyclists. Sadly, members of our local Mar Vista Community Council seem to be okay with this level of carnage.

LAUSD E-Choices Enrollment

Hey Mar Vista Parents! In case you missed it, LAUSD's E-Choices enrollment is still open! Applications are available online until Friday, November 18.

Links to the application are available on the Mar Vista Schools page of our website, along with profiles of all Mar Vista's nearby schools so you can compare all of your options.

This year, LAUSD has also made available their brochures in many languages: English, Spanish, Armenian, Russian, Chinese, Filipino, Farsi, Vietnamese, Korean

Thank you to Jen Kanter and Dana Christiansen for their work collecting all this information!

There Will Be No Richland Middle School

(From Damien Newton) Richland parents have been pretty certain of this for a couple of months, but LAUSD made it official. Richland Avenue School will not be opening a new middle school campus in place of the LAUSD offices on Colby Avenue. Plans for a 'Richland Middle School' have been changed due to damage to the existing bungalows requiring more expensive renovations than what LAUSD was willing to spend.

Richland will remain a French Immersion school that people need to apply to get their children into, but as of next year will only be a K-5 school. Daniel Webster Middle School will be adding a French Language 'tract' for students wishing to continue their bi-lingual education into middle school. The tract will physically replace one of the charter schools that is sharing space on the Webster campus this year.

Free Food Collective and PUMA Team Up

Our friends at Free Food Collective and Palms Unhoused Mutual Aid have started a new food recovery effort. They recover prepared food on Tuesdays, and then reheat & repackage the meals on Wednesdays for PUMA's outreach efforts through Mar Vista and Palms.

Globally, 30-40% of all food is sent to landfills, where it emits methane gas (84x more potent than CO2!). Meanwhile 38 million people experienced hunger in the US in 2020. This is a humanitarian crisis and environmental disaster. FFC works to stop this on a local level by recovering excess food in LA and giving it to people who need it instead. Since they started this project in May 2021, they have recovered over 20,000 pounds of fresh food!

Sign Up Today for Fresh, Free Meals!

Tired of grocery shopping and meal prep? Looking to save money on food? Enroll in the free meals program today and receive 7 to 14 meals per week delivered right to your doorstep! There are no income requirements or other means testing for this program.

Mar Vista Voice is collaborating with the LA Department of Aging to get the word out about this fantastic program. To enroll, click below and complete the form. You can also call or email us using the contact info on the flyer above.

Seniors in Mar Vista are also welcome to join the Mar Vista Seniors Club weekly meeting on Fridays at 10am at Mar Vista Park. Email Byron Stalcup for more