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    City Council to Consider New Board and Commission Appointments Monday

    City Council to Consider New Board and Commission Appointments Monday

    Fri, Apr 28, 2017 4 Comments

    Sheila Lightfoot, whose frequent disagreements with her fellow Planning Commissioners got to the point that she and they sometimes joked about them, has resigned.

    Lightfoot’s resignation is one of five resignations or decisions not to accept reappointment by appointees of Mayor Lauren Meister in recent months. Others are Victor Omelczenko from the Public Facilities Commission, Stephanie Harker of the Historic Preservation Commission, Michael Wojtkielewicz from the Disabilities Advisory Board and Kate Eggert from the Lesbian and Gay Advisory Board.

    At its meeting on Monday, the City Council will reconsider reappointing or naming new appointees to the city’s 15 boards and commissions, with terms that will expire May 31, 2019.

    The Planning Commission is arguably the most powerful of the boards and commissions, given its role…

    Wednesday’s ‘Coffee with a Cop’ Is a Chance to Meet Your Public Safety Officers

    Wednesday’s ‘Coffee with a Cop’ Is a Chance to Meet Your Public Safety Officers

    Thu, Apr 27, 2017

    Coffee with the Captain has morphed into Coffee with a Cop (or several cops really).

    Capt. Sergio Aloma, the newly appointed commander of the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station, announced the change at the city’s Public Safety Commission meeting last night. The first Coffee with a Cop under his command will take place next Wednesday from 8 to 9 a.m. at Astro Burger, 7475 Santa Monica Blvd. near North Gardner.

    Coffee with the Captain was a community gathering launched by former Mayor Lindsey Horvath at which residents were invited to meet informally with the head of the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station. Aloma said he wants to continue the tradition, but wants to broaden attendance to include deputies as well as the captain so that they get to meet the residents they serve.

    “I very much want our deputies to be able to meet and…

    WeHo Dodgeball Charity Tournament Is This Saturday

    WeHo Dodgeball Charity Tournament Is This Saturday

    Thu, Apr 27, 2017

    The City of West Hollywood is a co-sponsor of the upcoming WeHo Dodgeball Charity Tournament. The event will help build attention for Sexual Assault Awareness Month and will benefit two local nonprofit organizations.

    The tournament will take place on Saturday from 3 to 8 p.m., at the West Hollywood Park Auditorium, located at 647 N. San Vicente Blvd., south of Santa Monica. The adult co-ed event will feature food, drinks and raffles, and it will be open to anyone who is 21 years of age or older.

    “WeHo Dodgeball is a sensation in West Hollywood,” said West Hollywood Mayor Lauren Meister. “On the court, competition is fierce. But, off the court, WeHo Dodgeball players are compassionately connected to our community. This tournament is a testament to their spirit of generosity.”

    Tournament registration is $25 per person or…

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    Trusted Builder Makes Your Renovation Dreams Come True From Concept To Completion

    Trusted Builder Makes Your Renovation Dreams Come True From Concept To Completion

    Thu, Mar 02, 2017

    Often the kitchen of our dreams only stays in our dreams when we face the seemingly insurmountable challenges of renovation headaches. We know we deserve the open-plan, tiled space with the finest appliances to whip up culinary breakthroughs while entertaining with cocktails or Italian wine, but we never seem to make it happen. With the […]

    In Memory: Leslie Gersicoff, Labor Leader and Feminist Activist

    In Memory: Leslie Gersicoff, Labor Leader and Feminist Activist

    Thu, Apr 27, 2017

    Leslie Gersicoff, the executive director of the Jewish Labor Committee Western Region passed away on Monday, April 17th.

    Leslie was involved in the movement for single payer health care for all Californians and totally committed to fair labor issues. She had a deep, deep passion to end human trafficking and violence against women, and she was a pro-choice activist, She believed in people having the right to be able to live with dignity and freedom.

    Some of you may have seen her being interviewed on live TV a few years back during a candlelight vigil, Leslie had long, straight gray hair, and while being interviewed she accidentally set her hair on fire with her candle. It’s something many of us always teased her about.

    She also created a task force committed to ending human trafficking that I, along with many others, for a…

    Intoxicated Man Gets Punched, Loses $180,000 Ring in WeHo’s Boystown

    Intoxicated Man Gets Punched, Loses $180,000 Ring in WeHo’s Boystown

    Wed, Apr 26, 2017 3 Comments

    Below is the weekly crime report from the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station that calls out incidents in WeHo from April 17 to 23. The list also includes each case number.

    April 17

    Grand Theft. 8600 Block Melrose Avenue between at 1 and 1:30 p.m. A man removed a purse from a tabletop while the victim was eating. Loss $2,500. #01980

    April 18

    Residential Burglary. 7700 Block Fountain Avenue at 2 p.m. A man used an unlocked bedroom window to gain access to the bedroom. The suspect was confronted by the resident immediately after making entry and a short struggle ensued. The suspect fled the area on foot. The victim and suspect know each other. #01993

    April 19

    Grand Theft. 1300 Block Laurel Avenue. Between 10 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. An unknown suspect removed a backpack

    WeHo Landlord Sentenced to Jail for Ellis Act Violation

    WeHo Landlord Sentenced to Jail for Ellis Act Violation

    Tue, Apr 25, 2017 8 Comments

    The City of West Hollywood has prevailed in court against West Hollywood landlord Anne Kihagi, who has been ordered to serve five days in Los Angeles County Jail and to pay the city’s attorney fees and costs.

    Kihagi was held in contempt of court on Feb. 21 for violating a preliminary injunction that prohibited her from re-renting certain units at her property, an eight-unit building located at 1263 N. Crescent Heights Blvd.

    The preliminary injunction was obtained after the City of West Hollywood intervened in a case against Kihagi, filed by a former tenant, who contends he was wrongly evicted when Kihagi used the Ellis Act as a pretext to terminate all of the leases in the building. Kihagi violated the injunction by re-renting the former tenant’s unit.

    The city filed a lawsuit against Kihagi in 2008, alleging that after…

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    California Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Address New Lane Splitting Law

    California Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Address New Lane Splitting Law

    Fri, Nov 18, 2016 4 Comments

    While it’s been practiced and accepted by law enforcement agencies in California for decades, lane splitting has never officially been declared legal or illegal. The controversial and highly debated practice was officially legalized on August 19, 2016, when Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill No. 51 into law. Many motorcyclists insist lane splitting is safe, […]

    WeHo’s ‘F*ck W/Out Fear’ Sidewalk Campaign Gets Freshened Up

    WeHo’s ‘F*ck W/Out Fear’ Sidewalk Campaign Gets Freshened Up

    Mon, Apr 24, 2017 15 Comments

    The controversial “F*ck W/Out Fear” campaign on WeHo’s Santa Monica Boulevard is getting spruced up this week.

    WEHOville readers have inquired about the disappearance of the campaign’s sidewalk chalk drawing on Santa Monica Boulevard near Palm Avenue. That drawing, designed to promote the use of Truvada as a measure to prevent HIV infection, upset the owners of the nearby Yogurt Stop and was allegedly defaced by a man who also spray painted over another.

    But it’s gone only because the L.A. LGBT Center has decided to move the eye-catching sidewalk sign to the highly trafficked northeast corner of Santa Monica and San Vicente boulevards.

    Jim Key, the Center’s chief marketing officer, said the Center originally had intended to place the image on the sidewalk in front of Micky’s, the bar just to the west of Yogurt…

    Crystal Meth Anonymous Comes to WeHo for Weekend Workshops

    Crystal Meth Anonymous Comes to WeHo for Weekend Workshops

    Fri, Apr 21, 2017

    Crystal Meth Anonymous LA is putting on its annual conference this weekend at Plummer Park and West Hollywood Park in WeHo.

    The three-day event begins this evening with registration and a reception at Plummer Park’s Great Hall from 5 to 7:30 p.m. The weekend events and workshops are open to anyone whether in a meth recovery program or just beginning one.

    From 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. there will be a presentation by a speaker at Plummer Park’s Fiesta Hall.

    On Saturday CMALA begins with a yoga session at 7:45 a.m. at Great Hall. From 8 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. and from 2 to 4:30 p.m. there will be a series of workshops on subjects including relationships and intimacy, long term sobriety and meth recovery for women. A full list is available online. A lunch is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. and a banquet will take place at Fiesta hall from 5 to…

    Family Sues WeHo Pharmacy Over Testosterone Issues

    Family Sues WeHo Pharmacy Over Testosterone Issues

    Fri, Apr 21, 2017 1 Comment

    West Hollywood pharmacy, a Santa Monica integrative medicine center, two doctors and a pharmacist are being sued by members of a family who allege that the husband’s use of a topical testosterone product caused unexpected medical problems in his wife and children after they came in physical contact with him.

    Andrew and Tiziana Simpson filed the lawsuit Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court against Great Earth Compounding Pharmacy, the Akasha Center for Integrative Medicine and physicians there who allegedly prescribed the bio-identical hormone therapy replacement cream to Andrew Simpson. The doctors failed to warn him that accidental testosterone exposure in women and children who live or interact closely with men using the product is a “serious problem,” the suit states.

    The suit alleges negligence, breach of warranty,…

    WeHo’s Cathy Blaivas and Stephanie Harker Named ‘Earth Day Heroes’

    WeHo’s Cathy Blaivas and Stephanie Harker Named ‘Earth Day Heroes’

    Thu, Apr 20, 2017 14 Comments

    West Hollywood’s Cathy Blaivas and Stephanie Harker are among four Californians honored as Earth Day Heroes by California Safe Schools.

    Founded by Robina Suwol in 1998, CSS is a children’s environmental health and environmental justice non-profit. CSS got national and international recognition by spearheading the Los Angeles Unified School District’s (LAUSD) Integrated Pest Management Policy.

    In an announcement of the honors, CSS called out efforts by Blaivas and Harker to protect buildings and trees in Plummer Park from demolition as founders of Protect Plummer Park.

    “Their hard work prevented the destruction of 56 heritage trees and the demolition of nationally designated Great Hall/Long Hall, originally constructed by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in 1937,” CSS noted.

    Other recipients are:

    Fitness Guru Jackie Warner Pleads Not Guilty to DUI and Assault Charges

    Fitness Guru Jackie Warner Pleads Not Guilty to DUI and Assault Charges

    Thu, Apr 20, 2017 3 Comments

    A former television fitness expert who allegedly crashed into an electrical pole in West Hollywood and then backed her vehicle toward a sheriff’s deputy in February pleaded not guilty today to charges including driving under the influence and assaulting a peace officer.

    Jacqueline Renee Waddell — who was known as Jackie Warner on her Bravo TV series “Work Out” — is charged with one felony count of assault upon a peace officer and one misdemeanor count each of driving under the influence of an alcoholic beverage, driving with a 0.08% blood-alcohol content and hit-and-run driving resulting in property damage, according to the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office.

    The 48-year-old West Hollywood woman allegedly smashed her vehicle into an electrical pole near Holloway Drive and Hacienda Place while driving under the influence on…

    WeHo Shooting Victim Identified and Ex-Boyfriend Seen as Assailant

    WeHo Shooting Victim Identified and Ex-Boyfriend Seen as Assailant

    Wed, Apr 19, 2017 7 Comments

    The shooting death of a young woman in West Hollywood last night is being investigated as part of a murder-suicide now that the body of a man found dead in his vehicle two hours later has been identified as that of her former boyfriend.

    The woman, Whitney Jade Washuta, 25, lived on Rosewood Avenue in West Hollywood. Homicide detectives responding to a call at about 8:43 p.m. discovered Fire Station personnel attending to a gunshot wound to her upper torso. Washuta died at the scene.

    At around 10:30 p.m. L.A. Police officers discovered the dead body of Kyle Patrick Ramsey, 27, her former boyfriend, in a rented SUV on the 100 block of Craft Avenue. Ramsey was a resident of Pacific Palisades. It has been determined that he died of a self-inflicted gunshot.

    ABC7 reported that Ramsey and Washuta had had a difficult breakup and that…

    Cost of Living and Office Space Push WeHo Low in Ranking of Cities for Small Businesses

    Cost of Living and Office Space Push WeHo Low in Ranking of Cities for Small Businesses

    Wed, Apr 19, 2017 2 Comments

    The high cost of living and high cost of office space are two reasons West Hollywood has ended up near the bottom in a ranking of the best and worst small cities in the United States in which to start a small business.

    The ranking was conducted by WalletHub, a personal finance website. Its analysts looked at 1,261 cities with populations of between 25,000 and 100,000 residents (West Hollywood’s is roughly 35,000). It rated those cities according to their business environment, the access they provide local businesses to the resources they need and the cost of doing business in the city.

    West Hollywood ranked high in the education level of its workers and in the number of startups per 100,000 residents, where it came in at 146 among the 1,261 cities surveyed. Those factors are part of the overall access to resources part of the…

    Three Arrested for Stealing Eight Cell Phones at The Abbey

    Three Arrested for Stealing Eight Cell Phones at The Abbey

    Wed, Apr 19, 2017

    Below is the weekly crime report from the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station that calls out incidents in WeHo from April 10 to 16. The list also includes each case number.

    April 10

    Nothing significant to report.

    April 11

    Armed Robbery. Romaine Street / Laurel Avenue at 11:45 p.m. A woman was walking her dog northbouynd on Laurel Avenue when a man approached her armed with a handgun and demanded her property. The victim complied. Loss $30 (Purse). #01874

    Armed Robbery. Romaine Street / Gardner Street at 11:50 pm. A man was riding his bicycle southbound on Gardner Street when two men approached him armed with a handgun and demanded his property. The victim complied and dropped the bike. The bike was taken by the suspects but recovered a short time later by responding deputies. No loss. #01876

    Vehicle Burglary. 1100 block…

    LA Pride Pioneer Pat Rocco on This Year’s Pride and Resist March

    LA Pride Pioneer Pat Rocco on This Year’s Pride and Resist March

    Wed, Apr 19, 2017 6 Comments

    Cancelling the annual gay pride parade and replacing it with the Resist protest march is a bad idea according to Pat Rocco, the first president of Christopher Street West (CSW), the nonprofit that puts on the yearly L.A. Pride festival and parade. Rocco believes that the parade and the march should be combined and says there is still time to make that course correction.

    “Combine them. There’s no reason why they shouldn’t be and why it won’t be better because of it,” said the 86-year-old Rocco during a recent telephone interview from his home in Hawaii. “How good will it be that it is shared by everybody! By limiting it to one particular area that you want to have done, you’re eliminating the whole idea of what gay pride is all about.

    “We’re proud to speak up and say there should be a protest, but we’re also proud…

    Welcome to WeHo – the Rebel City Whose Cause Is Tourism

    Welcome to WeHo – the Rebel City Whose Cause Is Tourism

    Wed, Apr 19, 2017 14 Comments

    A woman with an apparent fascination with bondage throwing a dart at a target stuck in the crotch of a muscular and nearly naked man? A long line of sexy young men and women at the side of a hotel swimming pool, taking selfies? Two men, one preppy and one bearded like a hipster, sitting on a couch in what is apparently a gay mixed-marriage?

    Welcome to West Hollywood! Oh, and if any of that offends you, well, bye Felicia!

    Those images are part of a campaign by Visit West Hollywood to market the rebel city that is WeHo.

    “Any time that a destination is able to portray its best assets is always great, but for West Hollywood, it’s also never been more important,” said Tom Kiely, President and CEO of Visit West Hollywood. “This city was built on the idea of a safe haven and welcoming place, with no judgements made, and it’s the…

    Detectives Investigate Possible Murder/Suicide Involving Woman in WeHo

    Detectives Investigate Possible Murder/Suicide Involving Woman in WeHo

    Tue, Apr 18, 2017 2 Comments

    Homicide detectives from the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department tonight are investigating the shooting death of a woman on Rosewood Avenue in West Hollywood.

    A Sheriff’s Department representative said a call came in at around 8:43 p.m. alerting them to the incident. The woman was pronounced dead at the scene, which was in the 8700 block of Rosewood between Robertson Boulevard and Sherbourne Drive.

    At the time of this publication no additional information is available as detectives remain on the scene conducting an investigation.

    Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to contact the Sheriff’s Department’s Homicide Bureau at (323) 890-5500. If you prefer to provide information anonymously, call “Crime Stoppers” by dialing (800) 222-8477 or by using the website http://lacrimestoppers.org

    It’s Official. Heilman Is Sworn in as WeHo’s Mayor, Duran as Mayor Pro Tem

    It’s Official. Heilman Is Sworn in as WeHo’s Mayor, Duran as Mayor Pro Tem

    Tue, Apr 18, 2017 8 Comments

    It’s official. City Councilmember John Heilman was elected last night as mayor of West Hollywood and fellow Councilmember John Duran was elected mayor pro tem. Both will be formally installed at the May 15 Council meeting.

    The City Council rotates the largely ceremonial position each year. Traditionally the position is rotated according to seniority among current Council members, with the next-longest serving person being named mayor pro tem and the second longest-serving named mayor pro tem and placed in line to become mayor in 12 months. Heilman has served as mayor pro tem. Heilman will replace Lauren Meister, who was elected to the City Council in 2015.

    Like most small cities, West Hollywood is governed by a city council with a city manager employed by the council as its chief executive. As mayor, Heilman will lead City Council…

    WeHo to Host Yom HaShoah Holocaust Remembrance Day

    WeHo to Host Yom HaShoah Holocaust Remembrance Day

    Mon, Apr 17, 2017 2 Comments

    The City of West Hollywood will host a Yom HaShoah Holocaust Remembrance Day Commemoration on Sunday from 1 to 2 p.m., at the City Council at 625 N. San Vicente Blvd., followed by a candle-lighting ceremony at the Babi Yar Memorial in Plummer Park, located at 7377 Santa Monica Blvd.

    Yom HaShoah is an opportunity to remember victims of the Holocaust and focus on preventing genocides and other human atrocities from happening again.

    “Taking time to remember this darkest time in our history and honoring those who died as a result of the atrocities committed during the Holocaust is of vital importance — especially given the current political climate,” said West Hollywood Mayor Lauren Meister. “We must never forget. And we must continue to work for fairness, justice, and respect for everyone.”

    This year’s Yom HaShoah…

    Opinion: Foes of Development Need to Remember What WeHo Was Founded On

    Opinion: Foes of Development Need to Remember What WeHo Was Founded On

    Mon, Apr 17, 2017 16 Comments

    Gobsmacked. That English word, which means “utterly astonished, astounded” was what I felt when I read the summary of a recent survey commissioned by the city that says a majority of West Hollywood residents don’t want more apartment buildings in our city.

    Yes, they want more affordable apartments (what else would one have the nerve to say in a city built on protecting renters’ rights?) Just don’t build them in our neighborhood, please.

    A deep read into the survey’s findings shows that those who own their homes (that’s 20% of the population) are more likely to oppose new apartment buildings than are those who rent. Old folks also are more likely to oppose new apartment buildings. And so are those who have lived here a long time.

    A major reason offered by the opponents is fear of more traffic. Yes, traffic is a…

    John Heilman Likely to be Elected Mayor, John Duran as Mayor Pro Tempore Tonight

    John Heilman Likely to be Elected Mayor, John Duran as Mayor Pro Tempore Tonight

    Mon, Apr 17, 2017 3 Comments

    Long-serving City Councilmember John Heilman is likely to be voted into his eighth term as mayor of West Hollywood on Monday, with Council veteran John Duran taking the position of mayor pro tem. Both would be formally installed at the May 15 Council meeting.

    The City Council rotates the largely ceremonial position each year. Traditionally the position is rotated according to seniority among current Council members, with the next-longest serving person being named mayor pro tem and the second longest-serving named mayor pro tem and placed in line to become mayor in 12 months.

    Like most small cities, West Hollywood is governed by a city council with a city manager employed by the council as its chief executive. As mayor, Heilman will lead City Council meetings, sign official documents for the city and serve as the public face of…

    U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff Honors WeHo’s Noemi Torres as a ‘Woman of the Year’

    U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff Honors WeHo’s Noemi Torres as a ‘Woman of the Year’

    Fri, Apr 14, 2017

    West Hollywood’s Noemi Torres is being honored by U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) as one of the 28th Congressional District’s “Women of the Year.” This recognition is made each year during Women’s History Month.

    Torres immigrated to the United States from Guadalajara, Mexico, at the age of 13. She initially lived in Seattle, Wash., and now lives in West Hhollywood. Torres has worked in several fields including acting, telecommunications and real estate. She now is employed by Colocations Two, a movie and television studio.

    Torres currently is chair of WeHo’s Women’s Advisory Board. She has volunteered for Project Angel Food, AIDS Walk Los Angeles, the Revlon Run/Walk, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Heal the Bay and the Downtown Women’s Center.

    Other honorees include: Holly Hampton (Echo Park), Marlene…

    City of West Hollywood Takes Stand Against Federal Anti-Abortion Law

    City of West Hollywood Takes Stand Against Federal Anti-Abortion Law

    Fri, Apr 14, 2017 9 Comments

    West Hollywood has taken an official stand in opposition to President Trump’s signing of a bill that would allow states to withhold federal funds from organizations that provide abortions. The bill is viewed by many as an attack on Planned Parenthood, the non-profit organization whose services include not only abortion but also anemia and STD testing, cholesterol and diabetes screening, flu vaccines, help with quitting smoking, high blood pressure screening and others.

    A statement released by the city yesterday said: “The City of West Hollywood is deeply alarmed by the action taken by President Donald J. Trump today to sign into law House Joint Resolution H.J. Res. 43, which allows states to withhold federal funds from facilities that provide abortions. H.J. Res. 43 was used by the Republican majority in the House to allow states…

    WeHo Sheriff’s Station Seeks Help ID’ing Man Alleged to Have Stolen $100,000 of Jewelry

    WeHo Sheriff’s Station Seeks Help ID’ing Man Alleged to Have Stolen $100,000 of Jewelry

    Thu, Apr 13, 2017

    The West Hollywood Sheriff’s Department is seeking the public’s help in identify a man who broke into a jewelry store on Beverly Boulevard and stole $100,000 worth of jewelry.

    The break-in occurred last Thursday, April 6, just after 10 p.m. at Brilliant Earth, a store at 8797 Beverly near Robertson.

    The suspect is described as a white adult man who appears to be the same person caught on a surveillance monitor attempting to enter the shop on April 4.

    Anyone with information about this case is encouraged to contact Detective Gregory Boagni or West Hollywood Station at (310) 855-8850. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may call “L.A. Crime Stoppers” at 800-222-TIPS (8477) or use the Crime Stoppers website.

    Eight Burglaries in WeHo Last Week

    Eight Burglaries in WeHo Last Week

    Thu, Apr 13, 2017

    Below is the weekly crime report from the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station that calls out incidents in WeHo from April 3 to 9. The list also includes each case number.

    April 3

    Strong Arm Robbery (Suspect arrested). 8700 block Shoreham Drive
    at 9:55 p.m. A man was arrested after he used force to take the keys and cell phone of a tow truck driver who was legally towing the suspect’s vehicle. #01715

    Vehicle Burglary. 7500 block Hampton Avenue Between midnight and 10 a.m. An unknown suspect removed a portable navigation device from the interior. No sign of forced entry. Loss $300. #01711

    April 4

    Nothing significant to report.

    April 5

    Nothing significant to report.

    April 6

    New Policy Would Allow More Billboards on Sunset Strip

    New Policy Would Allow More Billboards on Sunset Strip

    Thu, Apr 13, 2017 13 Comments

    The City of West Hollywood will present next its proposal to revise regulations governing signs on Sunset Boulevard to permit as many as as 18 additional billboards over the next 15 years, of which 17 could be digital billboards. In addition, three existing billboards would be allowed to convert to digital. There currently are 89 billboards along the 1.6 miles of Sunset between Doheny and Havenhurst known as the Sunset Strip.  There also are four digital art signs.

    The proposal will be presented for discussion at a community meeting from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Horn Plaza Community Room at 1230 Horn Plaza, a condominium building that sits at the end of Horn Avenue above Sunset Bo

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