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Rumblings and Bumblings: Fairfax on Fire

We're eleven questions long and five neighborhoods deep this week. Plus a mystery question to boggle your mind! Not really. As usual, send your answers, scorn and additional questions to us at We'll focus and try to answer by Thursday.

1) Downtown: A reader finds the new condos by Union Station hideous. Naturally, he wants to know who allowed them to be built so he can send his thanks. "Do you happen to know how the Axis apartments at Union Station got built? Who authorized their construction? Aren't these being built on city property?"

2) Hollywood: "So what is going in at the NW corner of Melrose & Highland... and why has it sat empty and seemingly half completed for so long?"

3) Fairfax: A reader has a story to share along with a question. That's cool. "The free BlueHair bus that originally was set up to take old ladies from Park La Brea to Farmers Market has a great driver. I was on the bus the other day with my 4 year old son (by the way the demo of PLB has changed markedly to married with children....blame the high cost of local home ownership--sigh) and she informed me that Ross Dress for Less in the dumpy corner across from the Grove is probably going to move out.. the 20 year lease expires this year---and the new rates will be astronomical...what will go in?? Who wants to experience a big fat BOOM again like in the 80's when the store blew up from a natural methane leak. Oh, those were the halcyon days of living in LA when Fairfax was on fire."

4) Downtown: The reader with the skinny on the Security Building Lofts from yesterday had a question attached to his meme. "I also saw a giant sign advertising "LOFTS FOR SALE" being placed inside the building at the northwest corner of Sixth and Spring, presumably for storage, and they will hang this on the outside of the building sometime soon. This is the building where reportedly Mercury Liquors will be -- any news on when THAT watering hole is coming? Again, a February opening date was published-- no way that's gonna happen."

5) Fairfax: Maybe we can piece together info from this question and question 3. Obviously, Rick Caruso plans to turn LA into a giant mall. "Heard a rumor that the developer of "The Grove" at 3rd and Fairfax is looking into acquiring CBS Television City, razing it and expanding the shopping center. Anyone know any more facts regarding this?"

6) Fairfax: More Fairfax love? Did the neighborhood just get Internet connectivity? "The Leader Salon building at 344-346 N. Fairfax Ave (near Canters) has a great neon sign which was renovated not too long ago (it spins!)... I love the space and have hoped that something would move in for ages. Walked by the other day and there is a wooden construction wall in the front and they've torn off the old tiling on the building. Sad, but it wasn't in the best shape. Anybody have a clue what they're doing to this building? It's been empty for ages..."

7) Hollywood: "On Hollywood Blvd., to the right of the nice building where "Jimmy Kimmel Live" is filmed and across from the Virgin Megastore, there are a bunch of tacky bottom-level businesses including a candle store, a tourist trap store, and a little market. Above these buildings are two floors with boarded up windows that look like something out of '80s Beirut. It's hideous and sticks out like a sore thumb from the resurgent surrounding area. Who owns that mess and what's the plan?"

8) Miracle Mile: "I live at Park La Brea in the Miracle Mile. I was just wondering what the heck is going on with the big empty pit across from the Ralphs grocery store? It is right next to the "E" building on Wilshire Boulevard. The lot has a parking lot in back and a giant pit in the front that looks like it was supposed to be underground parking. A couple of years ago a sign went up claiming that a new condo tower for retirees would be built but the sign and the project vanished."

9) San Gabriel Valley: Bonus points to the reader who can answer this. "Hello from the SGV. What's going on at the corner or Rosemead Blvd and Las Tunas? It looks like the old Edwards Temple Cinema has been laid to rest and I heard some rumors that the entire block is going to be converted to some type of entertainment center."

10) Hollywood: Ahh, back to Hollywood. A neighborhood we know. "Drove by the Hollywood Galaxy center the other day (site of the Knitting Factory and not much else) and noticed the upper floor (where the theaters used to be) looked gutted. There was also a wooden construction-style wall built in front of much of the complex.

Sooooo... what I wanted to know is if the center is finally getting that long-promised overhaul? And what, exactly, are they doing with it? The CIM group's website is a little outdated so I didn't get much info there."

11) ???: Ooh, our first picture question. "This photo is from the TV show 24, which is filmed in and around Los Angeles. It's supposedly the President's Hidden Valley retreat. I'm trying to figure out where this house is located, or if it's even a house. I've been told the interiors are all shot on set, so they aren't much of a clue."