In 2021 the Empowerment Congress Southwest Area Neighborhood Development Council (ECSWANDC) launched an effort called the Southwest Village Plan which is focused on not merely a renovation, but a renaissance of our community to create a walkable business district for residents to be able to find the services they need, right here on our community; possibly by walking there! We want to be able to shop at bakeries, seek tutoring and enjoy restaurants right in our own community. The business area we are imagining would also invite passersby to actually stop and shop here.
We are interested in building our own community rather than taking our business to Inglewood or parts farther afield. Our starting point is to hire a consultant to assess our current situation, hear the vision from the community and develop a plan. We are at square one and we invite you to join us on this worthy mission. We need volunteers to help collect information for the consultant to work with. If you are interested, please contact Lonella.Enix@SouthwestNC.org.
An integral part of this plan is Western Avenue and we have been participating with the City of Los Angeles and inviting you to join us as we assess Western Avenue Safety. You can share your ideas using the Department of Transportation’s online feedback map: https://ladotlivablestreets.org/projects/western
Also related to this community building and identity project is the very name of one of our communities. For some time the community located between Manchester Blvd and 108th St., and Van Ness Ave. and Normandie Ave. has been known by two names, Gramercy Park or West Park Terrace. We are currently conducting a survey to find out which name residents prefer and begin the process to clarify the name. If you haven’t shared your thoughts yet, cast your vote here.
While we are working on these long term goals, we took action now to fund a cleaning crew by hiring the Coalition for Responsible Community Development (CRCD) on an ongoing basis to clean our community with a $5,000 agreement for services. Our funding is combined with funding of the same crew by Council District 8 for the CRCD to work full time keeping CD8 clean. If you see something that needs attention, we encourage you to use the MyLA311 app to report it.
“We are seeking to engage the entire community in developing this vision and imagining our future. If we don’t, who will?” said ECSWANDC President Lonella Enix.
We are excited to move forward with these projects to make Vermont Knolls, Manchester Square, West Park Terrace our own. Join us the 3rd Monday, 6pm at one of our meetings or contact us at Board@SouthwestNC.org to be part of the solution.