Trying to work up a sweat at the park? You better not be paying for that workout, at least according to Silver Lake residents, who are upset about fitness classes by LA Beach Fit and other groups that have taken to using public green space at the Silver Lake Meadow for for-profit exercise and yoga classes. Eastsider LA says that the complaints have as much to do with the early, noisy start times of the classes (jock jams pumping at 6 am) as they do the use of public space for money-making, but lucky for them it's very similar to the matter of street/park vending, which the city happens to be trying to regulate lately. "This is not supposed to be a commercial zone. Anybody can open up a business there. It's wrong," harrumphed a Silver Lake resident at a City Council meeting earlier this week.
"Basically, anyone can set up a business in the park. Right now the LAPD has no effective mechanism" for stopping unpermitted sales, a rep for the City Attorney's office tells the Eastsider. The issue's come up recently at Echo Park Lake as well, where vendors used to regularly hold an informal swap meet that rankled neighbors who wanted to see public space used for picnics and relaxing rather than money-making. But Los Angeles has fewer and fewer jobs these days, which means more people are trying to scrape together whatever they can from street vending, as the LA Times reported earlier this month.
An ordinance that would attempt to regulate vendors by issuing permits and restrictions on sales, as well as setting guidelines for enforcement was narrowly approved by the Arts, Parks Health, Aging & River Committee; it's set to go before City Council next. A similar ordinance has already restricted what can be sold on the Venice Boardwalk.
· Residents worked up over Silver Lake Meadow exercise classes [ELA]
· Swap meet vendors return to Echo Park Lake as city considers regulations [updated] [ELA]