November 4, 2013 |
Sick of Obamacare overload? Welcome, then, to Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre's “The Groundskeepers,” where healthcare comes to beautifully moody, elegiac life. Running through Saturday, this new, seven-scene, two-hour work written by George Moreno and mounted by site-specific queen Duckler, who founded her troupe in 1985, animates Boyle Heights' shuttered Linda Vista Hospital. Built in 1904 for railroad workers, Charles Whittlesey's massive structure closed in 1991 and will soon be converted into affordable housing.
October 10, 2013 |
Looking for the American dream in Los Angeles? Good luck with that. A household earning the county's median income - $53,001 annually in 2012 - can only afford a home worth about $271,000, a price point better suited to the Midwest than the West Coast. That means a typical buyer can afford only 24% of the homes currently for sale, according to a study released Thursday by Trulia, the real estate information company. Los Angeles County is the nation's third-most-expensive housing market by this measure - behind only San Francisco and Orange County.
September 26, 2013 |
Despite their potential as affordable, well-built housing for the masses, modern prefabs in California have tended to be custom-built designs that exceed prospective buyers' budgets. In South Los Angeles, however, a nonprofit organization called Restore Neighborhoods LA recently finished three architect-designed prefab houses topped with solar panels and aimed at moderate-income families. The RNLA houses were designed by the Santa Monica firm Minarc , headed by the wife-husband team of Erla Dögg Ingjaldsdóttir and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, and built with the couple's interlocking panel system, dubbed mnmMOD. A bonus: mnmMOD is produced in nearby Vernon, providing local jobs and cutting down on transportation costs, the firm said.
September 25, 2013
Re "Beyond the CRAs," Editorial, Sept. 22 The legislation The Times has endorsed to create Sustainable Community Investment Authorities (SCIAs) to succeed Community Redevelopment Agencies has a serious defect. It allows elected politicians to spend future tax revenues today. The Times' editorial writers take comfort in the fact that SCIA boards would be "bound by state ethics, open-meeting and public record laws. " That will not stop them from promising future tax revenues as collateral for projects they want today.
September 22, 2013 |
The genius of the state's late and not-very-much-lamented community redevelopment agencies was that they built projects that raised property values and then kept for themselves the higher tax receipts that resulted. Normally, taxes are divvied up among the city, the county, the school districts and the state, but in a California-style CRA project area, any tax receipts beyond what the parcel already had been generating would stay with the agency to pay off bonds and invest in new projects.
July 25, 2013 |
Want to pay Midwest prices for a West Coast home? Despite skyrocketing home prices in Southern California, some communities still offer bargain-basement homes - even by national standards. The 10 most affordable ZIP codes all rest in the Inland Empire, where the median home price in some communities remains below $100,000, among them Barstow and Twentynine Palms. But those homes are becoming harder and harder to find, as investors have scooped up many of the houses to either flip or rent out. In June, the number of Southland homes that sold below $200,000 fell 43.2% from a year earlier, while the number of homes priced under $300,000 dropped 35%, according to research firm DataQuick.