Aileen Getty Foundation Donates $1.2 Million to Friends of the Hollywood Central Park for Environmental Impact Report
August 22, 2012
HOLLYWOOD—Friends of the Hollywood Central Park (FHCP), a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a 44-acre street-level park over the Hollywood Freeway in a densely populated and park-poor area of the city, accepted a $1.2 million gift today from the Aileen Getty Foundation to fund the Environmental Impact Report (EIR). With the Aileen Getty Foundation’s generous donation and the City’s contribution of $825,000 the projected $2 million Environmental Impact Report is now fully funded.
“FHCP is overwhelmed by Aileen Getty’s magnificent donation – her indomitable spirit and commitment to Hollywood knows no bounds,” said FHCP President, Laurie Goldman. “Aileen Getty is an extraordinary and special person whom we are honored to call our friend. The Aileen Getty Foundation gift allows FHCP to begin the environmental review process and takes us one major step closer to building the Hollywood Central Park.”
"Hollywood Central Park will not only be a destination for the local community, it's going to be a global model of innovation in creating green and open public space in an urban city. Aileen Getty has long been a generous champion for Hollywood and her support of the park adds to her lasting impact on this neighborhood," said Councilmember Eric Garcetti.
Funding of the EIR has been FHCP’s number one priority. In November 2011, FHCP celebrated CRA/LA’s unanimous vote to fund the $2 million EIR. One month later, in December, their joy turned to disappointment when the California State Supreme Court abolished redevelopment agencies (California Redevelopment Agencies v. Ann Matosantos). As 2012 began, FHCP re-doubled their efforts to find the necessary EIR funding. Mayor Villaraigosa, Council Member Eric Garcetti and Council Member Tom LaBonge, unwavering supporters of the Park, identified $825,000 for the EIR. On July 5, 2012, the Los Angeles City Council authorized the transfer of $825,000 to the Bureau of Engineering for Hollywood Central Park EIR. “We are proud to serve as the lead agency for the Hollywood Central Park’s EIR and thank Aileen Getty for her generous donation to FHCP and the people of Los Angeles,” said, City Engineer Gary Lee Moore. “Bureau of Engineering has a proven track record in the delivery of projects that embrace the goals of sustainable development, as this project does.”
In May, FHCP Board members Laurie Goldman and Brian Folb met with Aileen Getty to introduce her to the Hollywood Central Park. They discussed the extensive benefits the Park would provide the Hollywood Community and Los Angeles, FHCP’s hugely successful March advocacy trip to Washington, DC and the status of the EIR. “The Hollywood Central Park is all about building community and celebrating our commonality in a natural environment – an imaginative urban park built atop the Hollywood Freeway,” said Aileen Getty. “The Park will allow people of all ages to connect to each other and to nature. I am energized by the opportunity to support this project. I believe it is a vital link in creating greater quality of life in our city.”
"There are many angels in this City of Angels, but Aileen Getty has some of the biggest wings," Councilmember Tom LaBonge said. "There is a growing movement around the world to take back infrastructure to create public spaces, and the Hollywood Central Park will be another great example."
The Park began as an idea more than 28 years ago. In 2006, it progressed from a Hollywood Chamber of Commerce initiative to a Hollywood Community coalition, with steadfast support from Council Member Eric Garcetti and CRA/LA. Finally it culminated in the creation of the nonprofit organization, Friends of the Hollywood Central Park, dedicated to creating the Hollywood Central Park. Friends of the Hollywood Central Park, created in December 2008, committed itself to raising funds to create a park atop Hollywood Freeway as it travels below grade between Santa Monica Boulevard and Hollywood Boulevard. By adopting efficient alternative and innovative land use plans and integrating strategies in order to transform the community and create long term prosperity, the Park will produce more than 45,000 direct and indirect jobs, create a sustainable community which promotes equity, strengthens the economy, protects the environment, promotes a healthy and safe community and serve as a national model for the creation of new green space in a dense urban environment.
ABOUT FRIENDS OF THE HOLLYWOOD CENTRAL PARK
FHCP is a non-profit organization dedicated to building the Hollywood Central Park, a 44-acre street level park over the Hollywood Freeway as it travels below grade through the heart of Hollywood.
The Hollywood Central Park is a landmark infrastructure project that will reunite communities separated for more than 50 years by the freeway, create 45,000 jobs, provide economic stimulus and long term economic security, provide healthy communities and provide children with open green space in which to grow and thrive.
The Hollywood Central Park will transform Hollywood’s disadvantaged communities into thriving economic engines and is an investment in our children, our community and our future. For more information visit http://hollywoodcentralpark.org
ABOUT THE AILEEN GETTY FOUNDATION
The Aileen Getty Foundation is a non-profit organization committed to alleviating poverty, improving quality of life, and enhancing community in Los Angeles and around the world. The Foundation is led by philanthropist Aileen Getty, who has worked tirelessly for more than a decade to provide supportive housing to the homeless in Hollywood. The Foundation supports a number of local and national causes related to urban poverty, homelessness, and community development, and continues to explore opportunities that assist the most vulnerable in our communities.