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Weddington's 16 acres  STILL needs our protection

Save L.A. River Open Space turns 20 this year!

Our fight to protect 16 acres of open green space will continue as a lawsuit (read here)  against the city ignoring key points in the California Environmental Quality Act.  There are two other lawsuits against the City of Los Angeles regarding the Historical Cultural Monument status of this property. 


October 14, 2024 is the hearing regarding the merits of our lawsuit.

Developer Harvard-Westlake Illegally Removes Trees from Los Angeles County Land



Studio City, CA – June 7, 2024 – In a shocking violation of the provisions of their lease with the County and the Surplus Land Act, Harvard-Westlake, a private local high school, has been found illegally removing trees from LA County-owned land along the Los Angeles River during their demolition of Weddington Golf & Tennis. This unauthorized activity, which took place without County approval, proper permits nor community consultation, has sparked outrage among local residents and environmental groups. 


The incident was discovered by local residents submitting pictures of the remnants of those destroyed trees. These trees, some of which were decades old, play a crucial role in the local ecosystem by providing habitat for wildlife, transpirational cooling, improving air quality, and enhancing the aesthetic value of the community.  Those trees were also noted to be within the bird nest buffer zone survey, a mitigation that was mandated in the project’s Environmental Impact Report.


"We completed our site inspection and did discover some trees were removed from the Los Angeles County Flood Control District property without permission.  We have notified Harvard Westlake to cease all construction activities on the District’s property," said Dayna Rothman, Head, Real Estate Los Angeles County Public Works.  


"Removing trees without authorization is not only illegal but also shows a blatant disregard for our community and environment,” said Dale Fernandez, President Save LA River Open Space," said "We demand immediate action by LA County to hold Harvard-Westlake accountable and to restore the damaged area."


Harvard-Westlake intended to either lease or purchase this land from the County.  In order to do so, compliance with the Surplus Land Act is required, which requires to send notice of availability to the parks and recreation districts as well as the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority.  There has been no evidence of compliance with this act.  


County officials have conducted an investigation into the incident but no consequences for Harvard-Westlake were instituted to-date.  Possible consequences may include substantial fines, mandatory replanting of trees, and legal action. In the meantime, the community is calling for increased transparency and stricter enforcement of environmental regulations to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.


Please contact Supervisor Horvath’s office to request to terminate the existing lease regarding this property (4141 Whitsett) 



We've written an email response for you to Supervisor Horvath regarding Harvard Westlake's Illegal Tree Cutting
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Are you interested to see Harvard-Westlake's EXISTING sports facilites.  
See the alternate Plan for Green Open Space
Donate to the Legal Fund: $5 / $15 / $50 / $100
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