The developers of a proposed 200-unit senior condo project along the L.A. River on the Weddington Golf & Tennis complex vowed on Friday to push ahead with the project – despite opposition from area Councilman Paul Krekorian.
Burbank attorney Michael C. Murphy, who represents the Weddington family, which built the sports facility and has owned the Studio City property for more than a century, said that the family has the right to develop its land.
He noted the family already donated 24 acres along the river for public use – Weddington Park North and South.
“I can’t think of any other family that has donated that kind of land within the city of L.A. It is unreasonable to oppose the Weddingtons’ project under these circumstances,” said Murphy, in an interview with the Business Journal.
“We wish the community well, but we are determined to go forward and develop the property in a responsible manner that is fitting for the community,” he said.
Krekorian, whose Second Council District encompasses Studio City and stretches of the river, announced his formal opposition to the project in a statement released late Wednesday following vociferous opposition by some members of the community.
In addition, the non-profit Save LA River Open Space has made public its intentions to try to buy the 16-acre sports complex and return much of the property to open space, while keeping the tennis courts and driving range.
Alan Dymond, president of the nonprofit, said his group is determined to purchase the parcel, whose current value has not been determined. “We are looking at every possible means to generate a public-private funding plan to acquire the property,” he said.
The Weddington family opened the golf course in 1955. They have been unsuccessfully attempting to put a residential development on the parcel since 2000.
The latest project, dubbed the Studio City Senior Living Center, would construct 200 senior condos on about a fourth of the 16-acre property at 4141 Whitsett Ave., demolishing the tennis courts and leaving the nine-hole golf course, driving range and clubhouse in place.