Finally and for the first time, Los Angeles is providing a formal way to view the Hollywood Sign. It's not the best solution, but it's something: starting May 3, the Recreation and Parks Department will launch a weekend shuttle service that'll run from the Greek Theatre parking lot in Griffith Park (where parking is free) up to a viewing spot at the top of Mt. Hollywood Drive that is not normally open to cars, and finally to the Griffith Observatory. The view of the sign from Mt. Hollywood Drive is rather distant and pretty oblique, but Rose Watson of Rec and Parks tells us the views in general are spectacular and impossible to see otherwise.
Until now, there's been no formal way for anyone to "visit" the Hollywood Sign, which means tourists have been left to find their own way; in response, the cranky neighbors right below the sign in Beachwood Canyon have waged war for years now, fighting any solution that might accommodate tourists in any way (they defeated a shuttle service plan in their neighborhood last fall). Watson tells us the new shuttle's goal is to reduce traffic in Beachwood and to provide an alternative now that neighbors have gotten the city to close off the Hollyridge trailhead, which starts in their neighborhood and leads to some of the most direct views of the sign (the closure is supposedly temporary, but we hear at least one neighborhood group is claiming otherwise). This new shuttle route bypasses Beachwood (and the best views) entirely.
Rides on the 21-seat buses will cost $7 and run on Saturdays and Sundays through the end of July. If the pilot's successful, the shuttle will start running year-round.
· Beachwood NIMBY Group Gets Hollywood Sign Trail Shut Down [Curbed LA]
· City to Offer $7 Shuttles to See Hollywood Sign Up Close and Personal [Patch]