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Neighborhood Group Sues to Ungate Runyon's Solar Drive

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The Hills are alive again with the sound of lawsuits--lawyer Richard MacNaughton and the group Hollywoodians Encouraging Logical Planning are suing the city of LA over some supposedly temporary gates. In 2002, the City Council approved gates for the end of La Punta Drive below Lake Hollywood "because non-residents were hiking up it to drink in the insane views at the top, leading to the occasional car break-in or guardrail graffiti," according to LA Weekly. The road has now been gated for a decade--the Council reapproves the gates every 18 months. (LAW points out a property listing on La Punta that notes that "the street is exclusive and gated.") Meanwhile, Solar Drive, formerly a favorite Runyon Canyon spur, was gated in September 2011 after the famous unfinished pink mansion drew ruffians ("squatters and ravers," according to the LA Times). (The neighborhoods, by the way, do at least pay for the gatings.)

The MacNaughton/HELP lawsuit (pdf) focuses specifically on Solar Drive and is based on the California Vehicle Code, which requires (in part) that the police department find "serious and continual criminal activity" in order for a street to be gated. The suit says that the LAPD never issued any report on Solar. The code also says that authorities can't put up gates that restrict access for some people but not others; Solar Drive residents have keys to get onto their street. There was supposed to be a ruling on the matter last week, but the judge asked for more testimony, so the matter will come up again on October 23.
· Hollywood Lawyer Fights City Hall's Attempts to Gate off V.I.P. Neighborhoods in the Hills [LAW]
· Blame the Pink Elephant: Runyon Canyon Road Gets Gated [Curbed LA]