Miracle Mile Neighbors!
Our historic Miracle Mile neighborhood turns 100 this year! Just a century ago the barley fields and orange groves just south of Wilshire Boulevard were transformed into a neighborhood filled with one-story houses and two-story apartment buildings in the fashionable Period Revival styles.
The pandemic had initially delayed our plans for a big celebration to bring our community together and enjoy the centennial birthday of our beloved Miracle Mile neighborhood.
However, spring or summer of 2022 is right around the corner and will be a perfect time to safely come together and honor the magnificent neighborhood we call home, Miracle Mile.
It was 100 years ago A.W. Ross (whose statue is located on the island at Wilshire at Curson) purchased 18 acres of land (for $45,000!) along Wilshire between Fairfax and La Brea to develop a shopping area designed around the motor vehicle and to rival that of downtown stores in the 1920s. Fast forward 100 years and Miracle Mile has blossomed into a renowned historical neighborhood, bustling Wilshire boulevard with museum row, wonderful restaurants within walking distance from our architecturally unique and gorgeous residential neighborhood. We are pretty certain that A.W. Ross never imagined the opening of the Academy of Motion Picture Museum or the much anticipated Metro Purple line subway running under the Wilshire corridor. Our neighborhood is constantly changing and yet, we still are able to preserve the beauty and architecture of this historic area.
There is so much to celebrate in Miracle Mile. Let’s continue with our milestone birthday as we have plans, and those plans include YOU! Please see below for how you can enjoy our journey back to 1921 and make our upcoming Miracle Mile Centennial Celebration a huge success.
Here are some of the ways that you can be a part of these celebratory events:
- Help us plan our celebrations! We need neighbors to volunteer for everything from our Centennial Celebration (planned for Spring/Summer 2022), assist with collecting stories from long-time residents, graphic design for our lawn signs, and more! If you like to volunteer let us know and our committee will contact you to sign you up for something that fits your interests. If you are interested please email, Hana Kawano, our Miracle Mile 100th Celebration Coordinator, by clicking here!
- Share your personal Miracle Mile story or photos. Share your personal story or interview a family member or loved one about their experience in Miracle Mile. You can send us an email, record a video or audio recording and the length should generally be between 3-5 minutes long. Send us photos! We would enjoy seeing photos of Miracle Mile from 1921 forward! Perhaps inquire with a family member or dig through your albums. Family pics, the front of your Miracle Mile home, or a photo of Wilshire Boulevard from yesteryear would be great! Click here to email your stories.
- We look forward to celebrating any centenarians who have or will be turning 100 in 2021/2022! Click here to email us if you, your relative, or your Miracle Mile neighbor is turning 100 (or has recently!).
- Share your personal story on social media. Tag us in your Instagram posts and pics about Miracle Mile memories and be sure to visit us @MiracleMileMMRA
- Share your personal story in a longer-form interview. If you would like to share your Miracle Mile experiences in a session longer than five minutes, one of the centennial committee members will contact you and set up a time to do this. We’d love to record your personal history! Click here if you are interested in a longer-form interview!
- How old is your historic home? We are interested in homes built from 1921 to 1924 and will showcase these in some very exciting ways! If your home was built during this time, especially if you are the lucky ones to be in a 1921 home, please email us asap! Email firstname.lastname@example.org. Spoiler alert – there are four homes in Miracle Mile that were built before 1921, however, they were relocated here at later dates! One was built in 1905 and relocated here from Pasadena. More on that later – follow us on Instagram so you don’t miss out.
- Our newsletter is one of the largest in the area but we still need ALL neighbors to get our messages and be part of our celebration. Please forward this email to your neighbors on your block and let them know about us!
IT’S TIME TO CELEBRATE
MIRACLE MILE TURNING 100!
JOIN USWilshire Boulevard., circa 1932. View from the E. Clem Wilson Building at Wilshire and La Brea, looking west along Wilshire Boulevard, circa 1932. Myer Siegel Department Store occupied the two floors at the base of the Dominguez Building at 5400 Wilshire. In the distance is the Wilshire Tower, also known as Desmond’s building – so named for Desmond’s, the first department store to locate in the Miracle Mile
CAN YOU GUESS WHICH STREET THIS IS? Follow us on Instagram for the answer @MiracleMileMMRA!
Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Conservancy
September 22, 2021
This coming Saturday, September 25, thanks to the Academy Museum, our neighborhood will be surrounded by road closures that are likely to send cut-through and diverted traffic onto our residential streets. Fairfax from Wilshire to 6th Street will be closed from 3 in the afternoon to midnight. Many other streets and sidewalks will also be closed or have limited access.
Beside the major closing on Fairfax, the Academy will also be shutting the bus lane on westbound Wilshire from Spaulding to Fairfax, the westbound lane of 6th from Curson to Ogden, and Orange Street from Fairfax to Crescent Heights.
Our CD4 Field Deputy, Kevin Sanchez-Morales, characterized what is anticipated for Saturday’s event as “widespread traffic congestion” and said that LADOT hopes “to prevent gridlock.”
Despite a city ordinance banning the Academy from closing Fairfax, city officials, with the blessings of the City Attorney and City Planning, and the unwillingness of our city council office (Raman/CD 4) to fight for enforcement of the city’s own ordinance, has granted the Academy this extraordinary cordon sanitaire to keep 500 Academy royals from having to brush up with the common folk (that’s us!) who happen to live in or are walking or driving in the surrounding neighborhood.
They’re also closing sidewalks along Wilshire, Fairfax, and 6th — effectively throwing up every possible barrier to ensure that the gilded donors to the Academy Museum won’t have to lay eyes or in any way be inconvenienced by those of us whose wallets aren’t going to spill open to help offset the massive debt the Academy incurred while building its glossy Death Star behind the old May Company building.
Since Grove-bound traffic, and anyone else trying to get anywhere on Fairfax from afternoon until midnight, will have nowhere to go, our residential streets likely will be flooded with cut-through traffic. The MMRA has not seen any specific traffic mitigation plan that the City and the Academy might implement to guarantee that we don’t become the doormat for the Academy’s traffic jam. The maze of our many dead end streets will become a vexing challenge to drivers thinking they can get around the closure between Wilshire and 6th.
The Academy is on record as saying this will be an annual event. They’re also on record as saying nothing prevents them from holding other “special events” with similar street closures. The closures, the Academy Museum’s Chief Operating Officer Brendan Connell, Jr., told Larchmont Buzz are just about safety: If Fairfax were to be partially closed the Academy’s event would distract drivers and lead to “rubbernecking,” he said. See Larchmont Buzz “MMRA and Academy Museum Tangle Over Fundraising Gala Street Closures“
To misquote Winston Churchill, “Never have so many been asked to sacrifice so much for so few.”
The bottom line: Get ready for a Carmageddon.
Here’s what you can do:
1. The MMRA is asking our residents to snap photos and take video of the traffic if, and when, it descends upon our neighborhood. Please forward your info to: newsletter@MiracleMileLA.com and follow us on Instagram and tag us in your post @MiracleMileMMRA.
2. Contact the Academy’s special Traffic Hotline at (323) 930-3011 to register your complaints and concerns.
3. Contact Andrea Conant, Deputy Chief of Staff and District Director for Councilmember Nithya Raman of CD4. She can be reached at: (213) 500-9681
SB 9/10: NEXT UP…THE GOVERNOR’S DESK. HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN DO
SEPTEMBER 10, 2021
UDPATE: The California Assembly and Senate have both now approved SB 9 and SB 10 and sent it to the Governor to sign into law or to VETO.
SB 9 and SB 10 will eliminate single family housing throughout California and destroy neighborhoods such as ours. Developers loaded with speculative money from Wall Street will start buying homes and tearing them down to build 6, 8, even 10 unit apartment buildings next door to your home. No height limits, no setbacks, no landscaping, no updated sewers, streets, and utilities, and you won’t have the right to contest the development, thanks to a legislature bought and paid for by developers. Silicon Valley investors, and Wall Street speculators. Neither of these bills address our affordable housing crisis but both will worsen the problem.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Forward this message to your neighbors in Miracle Mile as well as anyone living in California. To stop these bills it will take an “all hands on deck” approach. Don’t miss this opportunity to voice your opinion. It truly matters.
A special thank you to the MMRA Board and the hundreds of nearby communities, HOA’s and neighborhood associations as well as thousands of organizations in California who are working tirelessly to get the message out to neighbors regarding SB9/10.
MMRA Responds to Neighbors Concern of Growing Encampment at South Orange/La Brea:
August 2, 2021
Miracle Mile residents voiced concern over the growing encampment located at South Orange at La Brea. The encampment is believed to have one occupant and takes up about the width of a single-family lot. There is no visible tent but rather a significant accumulation of items that are added daily.
Residents have emailed the MMRA Neighborhood Watch via our block captain system and requested assistance as there has been an increasing quality of life issue for the local residents. Issues including challenges to navigate children to school around the site, violation of the ADA rule of 36″ to pass on the sidewalk, urine, feces & cockroaches at the site have posed a safety problem. Additionally, the businesses of Perfection Wash and Fold (1101 South La Brea) and Habitat for Humanity (1071 South La Brea) have both reported that the encampment is negatively affecting their business. Perfection Cleaners has had to reduce hours to ensure employee safety resulting in a loss of business due to this and from clientele not wanting to drop off laundry with the encampment only a few feet from their business door entry. Habitat for Humanity’s store manager, Rudy Trabianino, reports issues including loss of business, fighting and arguing heard at site, evidence of drug use by occupants who visit encampment, and increased crime (although he was not able to confirm who the perpetrator was) with a break in the week before where pallets were stolen (reportedly pallets are often used for construction of a encampment site).
The MMRA has been corresponding with Council District 10 Mark Ridley Thomas’ field deputy, Mayra Guevara, who represents the southeastern portion of Miracle Mile (east of Cochran and south of Olympic) as well as LAPD Officer Anna Schube, and the neighborhood prosecuting attorney. Up to now, the current city ordinances prevent any intervention other than LAPD responding to crime in progress or a violation of the ADA sidewalk clearance.
After months of email correspondence with no reduction in issues or size of encampment, MMRA requested a meeting at the encampment site and last Thursday met with CD10 Field Deputy, Mayra Guevara, and a newly appointed Homeless Coordinator for CD10, Roger Estrada. The two businesses impacted by the encampment had an opportunity to voice their concerns. The city ordinance proposed by the City Council for management of the PEH (people experiencing homelessness) had just passed the day before and was on its way to the Mayor’s desk. More information on the ordinance can be found here and here.
According to Roger Estrada, the encampment will qualify for immediate action once the ordinance is in effect. Outreach services to offer resources and shelter for the occupant of the encampment have been requested several times by the MMRA but with spotty response or tracking of outreach attempts. This will change according to Mr. Estrada who still encourages neighbors to place requests for service at www.la-hop.org via LAHSA as a means to enter PEH into the system to get service. However, the new ordinance (effective starting September) according to Estrada, will be more efficient, have better tracking, and also allow for more outreach teams in each council district. With that said, Estrada stated this particular encampment will likely take a ‘long time’ to reduce and will not disappear ‘overnight’ as many attempts to aide the occupant in reducing his extensive encampment will need to happen before an infraction would be placed after a certain period of months of assisting the individual.
Miracle Mile Neighborhood Watch is appreciative of our neighbors who take steps to ensure the safety of their blocks and encourages all neighbors to organize their blocks, report bulky item removal at https://www.lacity.org/myla311 and be active participants in our Neighborhood Watch program.
For more information and resources:
CD10 Field Deputy, Mayra Guevara email@example.com
CD10 Homeless Coordinator, Roger Estrada. firstname.lastname@example.org
For more resources and how to help people experiencing homelessness check out our MMRA Resources
April 9, 2021
Miracle Mile Neighborhood Faces Extinction
Click here to oppose Senate Bill 9 & Senate Bill 10
Warning: Senate Bills 9 and 10, now making their way through the California State Senate, threaten to totally rewrite the rules for developers in our neighborhoods, giving them the carte blanche to convert every single-family home and mom-and-pop duplex in Los Angeles into two separate lots and build four new units on each lot, or worse, build a 10-unit complex where a house once stood. Continue reading here…
April 1, 2021
Thursday, November 12, 2020:
Greg Goldin Elected President of the
Miracle Mile Residential Association
The Board of Directors of the Miracle Mile Residential Association [MMRA] has elected Greg Goldin to serve as president. Goldin will replace longtime MMRA president, James O’Sullivan, who recently retired from office.
Goldin has been a resident of the Miracle Mile for decades. For twelve years he was the Architecture Critic at Los Angeles Magazine. He is the co-author of “Never Built Los Angeles” and “Never Built New York.” He was the recipient of a coveted Getty Research Institute grant for “Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A.” in 2011.
“Greg brings an array of skills and talents to the job,” said Ken Hixon, MMRA senior vice president. “He is an experienced journalist and a strong community advocate. He will ensure that MMRA continues as one of the most effective neighborhood associations in the city.”
Goldin has a long history with the neighborhood: “My parents moved our family to the Miracle Mile in 1965, and pretty much ever since, this neighborhood has been my front yard and my back yard. I’ve combed its streets, picked over its allies, climbed the stairs of its tallest buildings, and descended into the water-logged basements of its single-family homes. I’ve seen many beloved buildings fall to the wrecking balls, and I’ve watched as our neighborhood has endured with resilience and pride. I love the Miracle Mile, warts and all, and I’m hoping that as the new president of the MMRA, I can continue to honor our past and act as a good steward of our future. Most of all, I hope I can help all of us to become more active participants in shaping our neighborhood and turning our energies to a sense of common purpose and good.”
Now playing on the MMRA YouTube Channel:
Why are power outages on the rise in the Miracle Mile?
Q & A with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
MMRA OPPOSES LACMA PLAN TO BUILD A PARKING GARAGE ON SOUTH OGDEN DRIVE
Fix The City Files Lawsuit Challenging the
LACMA EIR on the Ogden Garage
Mid City West Community Council Adopts Motion
Opposing the Ogden Garage
While all eyes were on Peter Zumthor’s controversial design for a new museum spanning Wilshire Boulevard, little attention has been given to LACMA’s plan to construct a five-story parking facility on the residential block of South Ogden Drive to replace their existing surface parking lot on the southeast corner of Wilshire and Spaulding… [Click to read more]
Time travel at our Miracle Mile Historical Photo Collection
The Miracle Mile Residential Association [MMRA] is a non-profit community organization composed of your neighbors, both homeowners, and renters. We are dedicated to maintaining the quality of life in the Miracle Mile area of Los Angeles through careful monitoring of development, safety, traffic, and other important neighborhood concerns.
The MMRA stays current on these matters and then disseminates this information to the neighborhood residents. The MMRA is a volunteer organization. It is composed of its members, board members, and officers.
MMRA Boundaries: Northern: Wilshire Blvd; Eastern: La Brea Ave; Southern: San Vicente Blvd; Western: Fairfax Avenue
Topics of interest:
- The ABC’s of our Miracle Mile HPOZ
- Preferential Parking Primer
- Why Can’t the Miracle Mile be More Like Beverly or 3rd Street…?
- When the Miracle Mile was LAX: Aviation History of the Miracle Mile
- Lights, camera, action! The Miracle Mile in Film