South LA’s Vermont Knolls neighborhood just opened its newest park, located at Vermont Avenue and 81st Street. That’s the site of a building that burned to the ground in the 1992 LA Uprising, giving way to “trash and an overgrowth of weeds,” says the Neighborhood Land Trust.
The new park is five years in the making. It features a playground, fitness equipment, “sustainable design elements,” and drought-tolerant plants, says an announcement from the city’s recreation and parks department.
Vermont Miracle Park is No. 39 of the city’s 50 Parks Initiative, which was started by then-Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. The program was billed as a public-private partnership aimed at transforming vacant lots and the sites of foreclosed houses all over the city into community parks, especially focused in areas that seriously lacked green space.
The Land Trust, the rec and parks department, the office of Los Angeles City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, and community groups are all credited with bringing the park to fruition.