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LA Wants to Lock Down and Spy On the Venice Boardwalk

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While the LAPD wages a War on Drums, breaking up Venice's weekly boardwalk drum circle for no good reason, the city turns its attention toward attempting to "tame the scene on Ocean Front Walk" by installing some intense security measures, including closing off car access to OFW from two-thirds of the streets between Marine Avenue and the Pier (via retractable posts and planters) and installing security cameras and a PA system, according to the LA Times. The efforts are nominally about keeping everyone safe from repeats of pedestrian/car collisions, but they're also geared toward presenting a tidy, Disney image of California beach life. (Councilmember Bonin, who reps the area: "This is one of the places the world sees when it comes to Los Angeles .... What face are we showing?") Predictably, old-timers are not super happy with this magic wand of gentrification sweeping over their neighborhood—they worry the changes will turn the zone into "Fortress Venice," and that the money for all these add-ons would be better spent on tidying the boardwalk's bathrooms or maintaining the nearby parks. As with the drum circle crackdown and a recent homeless crackdown in the area, these efforts seem at least partially intended to cater to Venice's very wealthy new tech scene.
· Officials seek to tame Venice boardwalk [LAT]
· The LAPD is in Riot Mode Over "Peaceful" Venice Drum Circle [Curbed LA]