If you haven’t seen the real estate sign up, the NoHo Arts Park lot that adjoins Pitfire Pizza on the corner of Magnolia and Lankershim is up for sale by the CRA(Community Redevelopment Agency).
It’s only a small 6,884 sq ft lot, but there’s no place I will miss dearly than this small refuge. For years, I’ve come by this corner before it became trendy. This stretch of Lankershim was dry of action the way many pedestrian oriented spaces in the valley became vacated after the 1960’s. I would head to the Television Academy just across the street(currently being totally rebuilt) to catch all the screeners in this doleful area. That is, until Pitfire opened in 1997.
Instantly the area became attractive. The landscaping, lighting and shade made it an inviting space I couldn’t turn away.
I didn’t come by as often as I’d like, because for awhile, Mr. CiclaValley was Mr. I’mProudOfMy310PhonePrefix, but still it made a great excuse to come out to the valley.
Fast forward a few more life events later to where I was still working on the westside and Mrs. CV had just accepted a job in Burbank. If we were going to drop a point in between the two workplaces to pick a home, then Jay Leno would be our next door neighbor somewhere up in the hills. That central point was unaffordable and also pit me against a guy who drives a different car everyday.
Do we need more hardscape like this on Magnolia & Lankershim?
On top of finding something in our price range, we wanted to find a place where we could settle down and not have to move again. One of the requirements was to live near a business district that’s walkable, but also a space with an outdoor patio were I could calmly end the week with a nice leisurely dinner like the one at Pitfire.
Wait! Why look for a facsimilie when you can have the real thing? A couple of failed bids later, we got our home in Valley Village and we’ve been making it to Pitfire regularly as the sun reaches below the horizon. Now that CVJR has been in the mix for the last few years, it has played an even bigger role in providing quality family time. On any given night, you’ll find a number of other families having the same experience.
It’s no secret that if the park goes on the open market, so does probably Pitfire. We need to take a stand to say our community needs this.
My daughter already has many great memories at Pitfire. So do I.
This park grounds NoHo. The intersection of Magnolia & Lankershim is already a vast expanse with two large office buildings coldly occupying corners. With a Starbucks located on the third, losing the park would rob this revitalized area of it’s character, making it a distant, urban landscape.
Even though Pitfire has done plenty to help the greater community, they have also been a big supporter of cycling, donating food and service to a number of events.
Please help Pitfire and the community in supporting this space as a park by signing this change.org petition and spreading the word. Spaces for people are rare to find and let’s send a message to the next generation that we care about them.