Save Poppy Peak
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SIGN OUR PETITION TO STOP DEVELOPMENT AND SAVE POPPY PEAK!
A real estate development LLC (limited liability company) has purchased 26 parcels of contiguous undeveloped hillside land in northern Highland Park that straddles historic Poppy Peak. With two new luxury homes under construction on Annan Way on the north slope of Poppy Peak, surveying stakes on Strickland Avenue on the south slope of Poppy Peak, and plans to build many more houses, we need to act now to protect one of the last remaining open spaces in Northeast Los Angeles. Development of Poppy Peak presents a huge disturbance to life in historic Highland Park and threatens cherished natural and recreational resources that define one of Los Angeles’ oldest neighborhoods.
FIVE REASONS WHY WE NEED TO SAVE POPPY PEAK:
- Development on Poppy Peak will cause a major disturbance for thousands of residents. The only access to Poppy Peak is via Strickland Avenue, Poppy Peak Drive, Annan Way, and Tipton Way — narrow streets that are already congested, have limited parking and emergency vehicle access, and are barely wide enough for two cars to pass each other. The geology of the undeveloped land, including steep terrain and earthquake-induced landslide areas, will require significant earth moving and engineering. Traffic congestion from trucks removing dirt and the noise of heavy equipment driving reinforcement piling deep into bedrock will present a major disruption to a neighborhood that was mostly developed prior to 1950. Significant earth moving will also increase airborne dust and particles, irritating children and adults with asthma.
- Highland Park does not need more development. With a population density of 16,835 residents per square mile, Highland Park is among the most densely populated neighborhoods in Los Angeles, more than twice as densely populated as the entire city, which averages 8,092 residents per square mile. Highland Park also has an exceptionally high average household size of 3.3 people per household.
- Our neighborhood is already park poor. Poppy Peak should remain an open nature and recreation space that the community can share and enjoy, especially given the lack of park spaces in this neighborhood. Approximately 66% of park land in Highland Park is located east of the 110 Freeway and not easily accessible to most residents. Garvanza Park, the nearest park to Poppy Peak, is a 20-minute walk.
- Poppy Peak is a historic landmark. It was the home of the indigenous Kizh (Gabrieleño) people for thousands of years before the Spanish arrived in the late 18th century. Poppy Peak is a major tributary to Arroyo Seco. It is home to many native plants and wildlife including bobcats, puma, coyote, hawks, and owls. At 1,031 feet, it is the highest elevation in Highland Park.
- Los Angeles does not need more luxury housing. Los Angeles has historically high rates of homelessness and those rates are expected to rise due to COVID-19. Housing for the wealthy should not take priority over more pressing projects and needs.
Save Poppy Peak exists to ensure the character and quality of life in historic Highland Park by protecting the area’s last hillside open space from residential development. We endeavor to see this land protected into perpetuity for the benefit of neighbors, nearby residents and future generations in this area; as well as for the oaks, poppy, sage, wild cats, coyotes, hawks, and owls that reside within its wildlife corridor. This watershed and indigenous landscape should be preserved as a shared community resource that promotes public health, biodiversity and urban heat reduction in what is largely a high density, predominantly Latino, and park-poor area. We are a coalition of committed community members working with elected officials and other stakeholders to bring about the purchase of this land for the public commons and ensure that it is not lost to overdevelopment.
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