The issue of the Autry National Center’s desire to remodel in order to house part of the Southwest Museum collection will return to City Hall next week. The City Council’s Arts, Parks, Health and Aging Committee has scheduled a hearing for Monday, June 20. The matter will return to the full Council on Tuesday, June 21.
The specific matter at hand will be the Autry National Center’s contention that the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) does not apply to its remodel. The City’s Recreation and Parks Board agrees with the Autry.
An appeal has been filed by Daniel Wright of the Mount Washington Homeowners Alliance and Charles Fisher of Highland Park, a well-known historian.
The application of CEQA would require that all available options (i.e. the reopening of the Southwest Museum in Mount Washington) be looked at before a project of such magnitude as a remodel of the Autry in Griffith Park could be undertaken. Further, under CEQA, the lead agency (The Autry) would have an obligation to mitigate all significant impacts brought about by its actions. At issue would be impacts on public land in Griffith Park and on the Southwest Mount Washington campus, which is a centerpiece of the Northeast Community Plan, a legally binding city planning document.
The recent back-story: