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Alfredo Hernandez

Streetscast: Alfredo Hernandez, East Hollywood and Park(ing) Day

8_20_09_Parking_day.jpgLast year's Park(ing) Day space in East Hollywood. Photo: LA Streetsblog/Flickr

Alfredo Hernandez is one of those Angelenos who makes
this city a better place to live but manages to fly under the radar of most
people’s consciousness. Professionally,
Hernandez works with the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust, a non-profit that
works with low and middle income communities to bring open space projects to
the community.

If that weren’t enough, Hernandez is a founding Board Member
of the East Hollywood Neighborhood Council and Chair of its Planning and
Beautification Committee. Partially
because of his influence, the East Hollywood Neighborhood Council has become
one of the city’s most progressive when it comes to transportation.  They’re the
first council to adopt the Cyclists Bill of Rights, the first to participate in
Park(ing) Day
and the first to create a video with a vision for their
community. And of course, who can forget
the amazing ArtCycle event?

Speaking of Park(ing) Day, have I mentioned that it will be on Friday, September 18 this year?  I have?  Great.

Hernandez is also a Board Member of the Friends of the
Hollywood Cap Park and U.S. Veterans Artists Alliance where he produces a monthly improv comedy show called the
LAAVAA Slam in Culver
City; but it was the high quality of last year's Park(ing) Day spot that led to this interview. You may remember East Hollywood’s elaborate
series of spaces last year that included a grill, free food, street furniture
and a swimming pool. Hernandez promises
this year’s Park is going to dwarf last year’s. If you want to find out more, listen on…

I should note that we decided to do the interview outside next to Heliotrope just North of Melrose, in the heart of the unofficial bicycle district.  However, there was a lot of truck and car traffic, and a lot of people that couldn't figure out how to park in spaces where the head of the car would face the sidewalk and not the car in front of it.  We thought the street noise would add a second message to the interview, but do regret lacking the expertise to drown the woman talking on her cellphone during the first interview segment.

First we discuss Park(ing) Days past and present.  The East Hollywood Neighborhood Council have been such strong supporters of Park(ing) Day, that this year they may sponsor two parks, not just Hernandez's mega-park in Hel-Mel.  Hundreds of people visited last year's park, which is made possible with the help of the surrounding businesses.  Hernandez believes this year's will be the best one yet, and perhaps one of the best Park(ing) Day parks in the world.

The East Hollywood Neighborhood Council is one of the most progressive ones in Los Angeles.  Find out what they're up to from one of their founding Board Members and how they're vision for they're community has changed the way people think about East Hollywood.

When he's not volunteering, Hernandez works for the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust helping communities without park space carve out open space for themselves.  If you want to bring green and open space to your community, listen on to see if you're situation is a good match.

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