The Echo Park Lake Fence

Posted on 04/01/2023
Echo Park Lake

 

ONE BIG THING: ECHO PARK LAKE

How we got here

Since we took office, we’ve been meeting with community organizations, advocates, other council offices, the Department of Recreation & Parks, and trusted service providers to plan the process of taking down the temporary fence that surrounded Echo Park Lake so we can ensure that the park is safe, clean and accessible for all.

We always said that we wanted to do this the right way, which means that we wanted to hear the community’s input and make sure we had the resources in place for once the fence was removed.

We held Town Halls in both English and Spanish with over 240 total attendees, and knocked on over 2100 doors around the area to solicit feedback about the future of the park. Here are the results from our survey:

-50% wanted the fence to come down

-32% had no opinion

-18% wanted the fence to stay up

That means 73.5% of people with any opinion wanted the fence to be removed. This is similar to The Eastsider survey results from 2021, which found that 64% of folks wanted the fence to come down.

Even if you don't agree with us on everything, we will always listen, find common ground, and work together to achieve our shared goals of a safe, clean, and welcoming park for everyone.

How we are keeping Echo Park Lake safe, clean and accessible to everyone

  • Service providers and outreach workers at the park 7 days-a-week. 
  • Overnight security to keep the park safe at all hours. 
  • A team of unarmed responders available during nighttime hours if any issues arise at the park.

To have a nonviolent response team come to the park to resolve an issue, you can call 1-877-275-5273 and ask for the “CIRCLE” Program.

What comes next?

We’re excited about this new chapter for Echo Park Lake with more services, expanded activities, family programming, increased accessibility for our neighbors with disabilities, and continued collaboration with the community.

Here are our priorities for the park now that the fence has been removed:

  • Ensuring Echo Park Lake is safe, clean and accessible for all.
  • Implementing proven solutions to homelessness like proactive outreach and vital services.
  • Maintaining a community presence at the park 7-days-a-week.
  • Expanding programming at the park, including new events, movies, concerts and activities.
  • Improving accessibility to the park with sidewalk repairs, wheelchair ramps and infrastructure to make the area safer for pedestrians.
  • Preserving green space access for residents, families and pets.
  • Promoting cultural vibrancy and economic opportunity by allowing street vendors to return to the park.
  • Working continuously with all community stakeholders to achieve and maintain these goals.

Two More Quick Hits!

Check out our weekly recap video on TwitterInstagram, and Facebook!

1. César Chávez Day & Supporting Workers

Yesterday on César Chávez Day we celebrated the life and legacy of an incredible movement leader. At the same time, we’re also thinking about the ongoing struggle of farmworkers and service workers across the state.

Everyone deserves respect on the job and the ability to earn a living wage.

We are fighting for worker justice in City Hall, and together we are building the power to bring transformational change to families across our communities. ¡Sí se puede!

2. LA’s Youth Development Strategic Plan

For the past 9 months, LA’s Youth Development Department has been developing a Citywide Youth Development Strategic Plan.

The plan is built on the foundation of years of advocacy by the Invest in Youth Coalition and other community partners, the Executive Task Force on Youth Development, and input from thousands of young people in LA.

To preview the plan, provide input, & discuss next steps join one of two virtual community forums on April 4th. RSVP at the links on the flyer below!

CD13 In The News

LAist – LA’s Expiring COVID Protections Raise Fears Of An Eviction Crisis. For Many Renters, The Crisis Is Already Here “We need to continue to pass more renter protections like the right to counsel. Otherwise, we're going to see a lot of people living in the street,” said City Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martinez.

LAist – The Controversial Echo Park Lake Fence Is Coming Down “That (fencing the park) doesn't make sense because if it's a public area. It shouldn't matter what your socio-economic group is; it should be allowed for everyone," Miranda said. 

Yulu Fuentes grew up in Echo Park and said she felt relieved to see the fencing go. "I feel like when the fences went up, there was just a change in approachability to the park. It felt very punitive to see the fences up as a response of unhoused neighbors that were residing at the park."

LA Daily News – Two years after homeless encampment sweep, Echo Park Lake fence comes down There remain differing opinions about whether the fence should remain, but the vast majority of park users the Los Angeles Daily News spoke with on Tuesday, March 28, said they were happy to see it come down or did not have a strong opinion either way. [...] 

“I have my emotional roots in this place, from when I was a child. (The fence) just seemed so out of place,” Guadron said.