San Pedro's Gaffey Street was selected as one of the first 15 in Los Angeles to get a pedestrian-friendly Great Streets makeover, but many residents think that it's mostly a billboard standing in the way of the area's potential for greatness (which is funny because their Great Streets plan kicked off with a new sign). The billboard, which actually kind of blends in with the tree near it, has been called an "ungodly sight" by Councilmember Joe Buscaino, who reps the area and has tried to get rid of that sight for years, says the Daily Breeze. This billboard doesn't look to be advertising a weed shop or anything risqué, but it seems almost universally hated by most San Pedroans. But now the owner of the land the billboard sits on has put the property up for sale for the first time in 38 years—officials have pounced and are already in negotiations to buy it and get rid of it.
The little blue stucco building at the base of the billboard is part of the deal too, and when the sale closes escrow (in an estimated two months), the days will be numbered for both. The community is hoping to raze the lot and turn the land into green space—a dog park or a passive park are just a couple of the ideas being tossed around. The potential park space would serve as a kind of missing link, hooking up to Bandini Park and the Welcome Park (formerly an abandoned gas station) just behind the billboard lot. In doing so, this new park would fit into the grand scheme centered around making the "gateway" to San Pedro a greener, more inviting place. Yeah, yeah, that's all really nice, but "The main purpose is to get rid of the billboard," says a rep for the neighborhood council.
· Time to say goodbye to San Pedro's billboard eyesore at town entrance? [Daily Breeze]
· The First 15 LA Streets Getting Big Great Streets Makeovers [Curbed LA]
· LA's Great Streets Makeovers Begin With a Sign in San Pedro [Curbed LA]