Philip Benson, the 73-year old mastermind behind a condo-conversion scheme in Huntington Beach is on the lam. Benson failed to appear in court for sentencing Thursday, saying he was too ill to travel from Idaho due to lung cancer. The scandal in Huntington Beach revolves around a scheme to illegally convert apartments to condos without the proper permits and then sell them to unsuspecting buyers. Seven people, including H. Beach Mayor Pam Houchen, have been indicted.
· Condo scheme defendant may face warrant [OC Register]
LA City Nerd reports on the possible closure of Woodbridge Park in Studio City. The park is being considered for the site of some kind of sewerage project. What? That's a great idea... for us to poop on.
· Park Closure in Studio City? [LA City Nerd]
The housing market in California continues to teeter and totter according to an article in the Mercury News. For the fourth month in a row, the number of home sales has declined making it harder for people to trade-up to the mcmansion of their dreams. Not to say that house values aren't still appreciating, although maybe at a slower pace than we've seen in the past. And if you intend to sell, be prepared to wait a little longer for a buyer to snatch up your place.
· California home sales hit four-year low in January [San Jose Mercury News]
Silver Lake is getting bigger and some people are pissed off. A new 64-unit condo development proposed for Rowena Avenue threatens to add more traffic and more uncool people into the hipster hood. The project also threatens to turn The Coffee Table into rubble. That's not cool.
· More on the huge proposed Rowena development [blogging.la]