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A sign on the wall of the building on South Figueroa Street reads: "No entry without permission." The interior, apartment units abandoned by an owner facing foreclosure, reveals the warning's ineffectiveness. Inside one apartment, a kitchen wall is spray-painted with names--G Bone, K Dog and 8 Ball--an abbreviated roll call for a gang that has claimed it as a hideaway.
April 25, 2014 | By Hailey Branson-Potts
To some in Canoga Park, the Xposed Gentlemen's Club is an unwelcome neighborhood landmark. Residents complain about its sultry billboards featuring scantily clad women. The LAPD tried - and failed - to shut it down, citing complaints of violence, prostitution and drug use. There was a shooting in the parking lot last year; a man's throat was slit in the club a few years back. But the strip club has survived, and its management has made an unusual move - seeking seats on the very same neighborhood council that has been a forum for complaints about it. The owner and two employees of the club ran for seats on the council last month, and one was elected.
October 17, 2013 | By Shan Li
Fewer people are living in middle class neighborhoods in America as people increasingly dwell in areas segregated by income extremes. American families are moving to areas that are focused more exclusively on either the wealthy or the poor, a trend that could exacerbate the growing income divide, according to a study by professors at Cornell University and Stanford University. The study called this trend "income segregation. " MOST DANGEROUS JOBS: 10 professions with the highest fatalities in America Compared with 1970, when 65% of American families lived in middle income areas, only about 42% of families lived in those areas in 2009, the study concluded.
April 24, 2014 | By Louis Sahagun
An oil operation that sent noxious fumes into a South Los Angeles neighborhood has agreed to spend about $700,000 on upgrades to prevent future hazardous emissions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday. The settlement capped a four-month investigation by the EPA into Allenco Energy Inc. that was prompted by hundreds of complaints of chemical odors, respiratory ailments, nosebleeds and other health problems in the University Park community, about a half-mile north of USC. "The company must notify the EPA that they have completed the improvements at least 15 days before reopening," said Jared Blumenfeld, the EPA's regional administrator for the Pacific Southwest.
May 2, 2012 | By Ernest Hardy and August Brown, Los Angeles Times
In 1985, Los Angeles rapper Toddy Tee released what could be considered West Coast hip-hop's opening salvo against police brutality in black neighborhoods. The electro-grooved "Batterram," named for the battering ram that then-LAPD Chief Daryl F. Gates used to smash into homes of suspected drug dealers, was a hit on local radio station KDAY-AM. The track went on to become a protest anthem in minority neighborhoods around the city where the device was often deployed against homes that were later proved drug-free: "You're mistakin' my pad for a rockhouse / Well, I know to you we all look the same / But I'm not the one slingin' caine / I work nine to five and ain't a damn thing changed …" rapped Toddy Tee. The L.A. riots of 1992 arrived with its soundtrack in place.
August 31, 1987
Blight can't be painted off. Nor will a fresh coat turn a rundown house into a mansion. But paint can brighten up a community and help salvage a ramshackle neighborhood. Some families who can't afford the paint have benefited from a summer-long painting party that would make Tom Sawyer proud. The Neighborhood Housing Services--a partnership of residents, business and the City of Los Angeles--organized the "Paint Your Heart Out" program to spruce up houses in six neighborhoods.
October 17, 2012 | By Lisa Boone
Whether nibbling injera flatbread in Little Ethiopia or sampling Salvadoran pupusas in the Byzantine-Latino Quarter, you could have much to experience in a series of free tours Sunday collectively called Found L.A: Festival of Neighborhoods. The nonprofit group L.A. Commons is organizing the daylong event, which covers more than a dozen diverse neighborhoods. The celebration will be like L.A. Commons' monthly Trekking L.A. tours, during which residents act as docents in their own neighorhoods.  Highlights of Found L.A. include an early-morning stroll along South Central Avenue with City Councilwoman Jan Perry; a tour of Frogtown art studios with artist Patricia Perez in Elysian Valley; a hike on an Eagle Rock trail with guide Peter Schaller; and a tour of Highland Park with Scott Piotrowski, author of  "Finding the End of the Mother Road: Route 66 in Los Angeles County.
May 10, 1996
Inglewood has hired a consultant to come up with a plan to revitalize the Darby-Dixon neighborhood, the city's most crime-troubled area. Located southwest of Century and Crenshaw boulevards, the 40-year-old neighborhood is under the flight path of planes heading toward Los Angeles International Airport. City Manager Paul Eckles said the neighborhood has attracted a transient population since 1958 when airplanes got louder and larger, and crime also has increased since then.
September 3, 2010 | By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times
Kendrick Harris, a high school dropout who has been homeless and jobless, has had more pressing things to worry about than the environment. But in the last year the 22-year-old South Los Angeles resident has planted community gardens, cleaned up abandoned industrial sites and learned how to install solar panels. "Not knowing where I was going to sleep at night, the last thing in my head was going green," Harris said recently as he helped weatherize a 75-year-old stucco home near Lincoln Heights.
October 31, 2010 | By Scott Gold, Times Staff Writer
Serious gang-related crime has tumbled 40% over the last three years in the troubled neighborhoods surrounding the sites of Summer Night Lights, Los Angeles' park program designed to curb violence, newly assembled police data show. This was the third summer that City Hall has run Summer Night Lights, offering recreational activities, mentoring and counseling programs, meals and other services at parks and public housing complexes. Launched in the summer of 2008, Summer Night Lights expanded to 24 sites this year.
April 23, 2014 | By E. Scott Reckard
Banc of California, a growing community bank in Irvine, is doubling its footprint in Southern California as it joins a new wave of smaller California banks pushing to expand into regional players in the aftermath of the financial crisis and the Great Recession. Banc of California said Wednesday that it agreed to buy 20 Popular Community Bank branches from struggling Popular Inc. in Puerto Rico, adding them to its 18 branches from Los Angeles to San Diego. The new branches would be in lightly banked Latino neighborhoods in Los Angeles and Orange counties.
April 15, 2014 | By Marisa Gerber
A man was shot and killed Tuesday afternoon and police were searching for the gunman after bullets tore through a residential neighborhood in Pico-Union, officials said. A man in his 20s walked up to another man near  Union Avenue and 18th Street, fired several shots at him and ran away, said Los Angeles Police Department Public Information Officer Nuria Vanegas. Vanegas didn't have information on whether the men knew each other but characterized the shooting as gang-related.
April 5, 2014 | By Lauren Beale
Recently completed, this clean-line contemporary is the new kid on a block of older homes in the Beverly Grove area. Among its au courant features are a biometric entry, a glass-walled wine preservation room and such green features as repurposed wood and a reflective roof. Location: 128 S. Almont Drive, Los Angeles 90048 Asking price: $3.4 million Year built: 2014 House size: Four bedrooms, six bathrooms Lot size: 5,397 square feet Features: Oak floors, high ceilings, remote-controlled linear fireplace, security cameras, floor-to-ceiling windows, terrace, walk-in master closet, tankless water heater, swimming pool, gated driveway About the area: Last year, 185 single-family homes sold in the 90048 ZIP Code at a median price of $1.2 million, according to DataQuick.
April 2, 2014 | By David C. Williams
Drive through the dilapidated main strip in Terry, Miss., and it's easy to see that the town of 1,063 is a hardscrabble place. And last month, life there got harder when the last bank branch in town closed, leaving in the lurch residents who have long depended on it as a convenient place to manage their money. The same thing is happening in countless other small towns and inner-city neighborhoods across the country, which have been left behind as banks adjust to new financial realities by shuttering branches by the thousands.
March 28, 2014 | By Vincent Bevins
RIO DE JANEIRO - As you roll into this urbane beach city you can easily understand why most soccer fans will choose to be based here, if possible, during the FIFA World Cup, the sport's premiere international competition that begins June 12. Brazil's former capital and a resurgent cosmopolitan city, Rio has most of the urban offerings you would expect in a major destination, such as museums, restaurants and night life. But it's really the city's natural beauty and bright blue skies that make the trip worthwhile and make visitors more likely to forgive the high prices, lackluster service and spontaneous logistical breakdowns.
March 27, 2014 | By Hector Becerra
Utility giant Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said Thursday it expects federal officials to bring criminal charges against the company in connection with a 2010 gas pipeline blast that devastated a San Bruno neighborhood and killed eight people. PG&E said it was negotiating with the U.S. attorney's office for some type of resolution but provided few details. A spokesperson for the office in San Francisco declined to comment on the investigation or say what if any charges were being considered.
March 30, 2013 | By Ben Welsh and Thomas Suh Lauder, Los Angeles Times
Crime reports are up significantly for the latest week in 11 L.A. neighborhoods, according to an analysis of LAPD data by the Los Angeles Times' Crime L.A. database . Eight neighborhoods reported a significant increase in violent crime. Encino (A) was the most unusual, recording three reports compared with a weekly average of 0.6 over the last three months. Elysian Valley (I) topped the list of three neighborhoods with property crime alerts. It recorded five property crimes compared with its weekly average of 1.2 over the last three months.
March 18, 2014 | By Jeff Gottlieb
Crews worked Tuesday to fix a fingertip-sized hole in an underground pipe that allowed about 1,200 gallons of crude oil to seep onto a quiet residential street in Wilmington. Phillips 66, which earlier in the day said it was almost positive that it was not to blame for the leak, later took responsibility and put the blame on one of its out-of-service pipes. Don Ellis, a hazardous-materials specialist with the Los Angeles County Fire Department, said that when an underground oil pipeline is withdrawn from use, it is supposed to be capped and the material inside vacuumed out. Janet Grothe, a spokeswoman for Phillips 66, said the company would investigate why oil remained in the pipe, which she said was taken out of service before Phillips 66 acquired it. Los Angeles Councilman Joe Buscaino, who was touring the area, said the pipe had been withdrawn from service in 1998.
March 16, 2014 | The Times editorial board
City government is not necessarily known for its willingness to try new things or move quickly, or its flexibility in issuing permits. Activists and businesses often complain that attempts to beautify their communities get tied up in red tape. But a program from the Los Angeles Department of Transportation offers hope of a new ethos emerging in City Hall, one that empowers neighborhoods and city agencies to experiment with urban design. The program, called "People St," invites community groups to apply for the right to convert a piece of city street into a plaza, a parklet or bike parking for one year.
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