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Saturday, Jun 10, 2023

Valley Councilpeople Make Push for Cultural Venue

Every San Fernando Valley City Councilmember endorsed a resolution introduced by Councilman Greig Smith supporting the development of a planned 1,600 seat Valley Performing Arts Center which would be built on the Cal State Northridge campus. The Oct. 19 resolution was seconded by Council President Alex Padilla and supported by Tony Cardenas, Wendy Greuel and Dennis Zine. The resolution was referred to a council committee, and is expected to show up again at City Council sometime this month for a vote. Smith noted that the Valley is home to almost 40 percent of the city’s population, or 2 million people, who are forced to drive to other areas of the city to see major performing arts productions. Cal State Northridge has a number of smaller venues, but nothing in the Valley, including the El Portal Theatre and the Madrid Theatre in Canoga Park, is large enough to hold a large performance, like a Broadway-style show or a symphony orchestra, according to CSUN president Jolene Koester. Koester has said that the university expects half of the theater’s cost to be covered by state funds, with the remaining money from private donations. The college is in the process of forming a campaign committee to raise about $50 million to build the theatre before the end of the decade. CSUN officials had previously told the Business Journal that they have already received six-figure pledges from private companies and individuals. Airport Action On Monday, Nov. 1, the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners voted to send to the department of City Planning a new alternative for analysis and incorporation into the Van Nuys Airport Master Plan. Alternative J identifies land use designations to govern future development of the airport and a dedicated area for propeller aircraft. Mayor Hahn said he was pleased with the BOAC’s decision to move forward with the Van Nuys Airport Master Plan, saying it is important for the airports users and surrounding communities to be able to have a plan for future development. The proposal reserves at least 35-acres for small piston aircraft, which were being squeezed out by jet business. The plan was approved almost two years ago by the airport’s Citizen Advisory Committee. There had been claims that the Van Nuys airport took a back seat while the city focused on a plan to modernize Los Angeles International Airport. The plan’s next stop will be a review by the city Planning Department scheduled in January, and would reach the City Council by May. Airport officials say the plan could take up to 10 months to complete. Tony Cardena issued a statement supporting the agreement. “Good compromises are rare in project developments of this magnitude,” Cardenas said. “Alternative J is the best plan because, even though no one got everything they wanted, each side realized that a fair compromise was more important than winning.” Burbank Elections Set Burbank will be having a primary election on February 22, 2005 and a general municipal election on April 12, 2005. The elections will be conducted by mail ballot. Up for grabs will be three council member seats, two board of education seats, a city clerk seat and a city treasurer seat. Nominating papers are available at the city clerk’s office at 275 East Olive Avenue from Monday, November 1 to Monday, November 29 at 5 p.m. Candidates must be at least 18 years old, a resident of the city of Burbank for at least 29 days before filing nomination papers and registered to vote in Burbank at the time of the nomination. Business Picks Kerry At VICA’s 16th annual business forecast, Valley business leaders showed strong support for John F. Kerry’s presidential election bid. More than 400 business and community leaders attended the conference, and 221 of them voted in the informal straw poll. Of those who voted., 52 percent said they planned to vote for Kerry, 43 percent chose Bush. A separate question, however, showed that 54 percent of respondents expected Kerry to lose the election. Staff Reporter Jonathan D. Colburn can be reached at (818) 316-3124

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