2014 CPEO Brownfields List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 2014 14:28:19 -0800 (PST)
Reply: cpeo-brownfields
Subject: [CPEO-BIF] Jordan Downs, Watts, Los Angeles, California
[In response to my comments on the draft Remedial Action Plan for the Jordan Downs "Factory" site, California's Department of Toxic Substances Control has directed the House Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) to conduct additional soil gas sampling and for the first time, groundwater sampling, on a portion of the site. I suggest that HACLA conduct groundwater, soil gas, and indoor air sampling at existing housing units adjacent to that property but outside the Voluntary Cleanup Program site. – LS]

An LA Housing Project Could Be Giving Its Residents Lead Poisoning

By Daniel Ross
Vice Magazine
January 28, 2014

It’s not necessarily the patchy linoleum flooring, the egg-white cinder block walls, or the bars against all the windows that gave Eleazer Acevedo’s unit at Jordan Downs in Watts, Los Angeles, its penitential quality – it's more the sparsely furnished rooms, noticeably bare save a few scant furnishings that look as though they’ve been plucked from a dozen different roadsides and yard sales.


The Jordan Downs urban redevelopment project has been decades in the imagination, years in the works, and months under the glow of a green light - a major landmark for a community long bedeviled by crime, poverty, and unemployment. Last August, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously approved plans to raze the current 700 units and replace them with approximately 1,800 mixed-income apartments along with chain stores and new streetscapes in order create "a vibrant urban village and model for public housing developments throughout the country," according to the city's five-year plan for South Los Angeles. This urban village was going to cost around $1 billion. Current government subsidized tenants have been promised one-for-one rehousing, as long as they remain in good standing with the Housing Authority. The full scope of the project hinges on a $30 million Choice Neighborhood Initiative Grant - a sought-after federal grant likely to be awarded in May.

At the center of Jordan Downs is a 21-acre L-shaped industrial site called the "Factory." Now vacant, adorned mostly with rubble and weeds, the Factory abuts the residential complex; the two are separated by an eight-foot-high brick wall with holes large enough for a child to crawl through. This is the source of everyone's fears.


For the entire article, see
http://www.vice.com/read/an-la-housing-project-might-be-giving-its- residents-lead-poisoning-miserable

For Lenny Siegel's October 2013 report on Jordan Downs, go to


Lenny Siegel
Executive Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
a project of the Pacific Studies Center
278-A Hope St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/961-8918

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