Google and AT&T join efforts to make Los Angeles most connected city worldwide
LOS ANGELES – On the heels of a series of major announcements regarding high-speed Internet access in Los Angeles, Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today welcomed the entrance of both AT&T’s GigaPower and Google Fiber to the Los Angeles marketplace.
“This has been a tremendous week for our efforts to create a more connected Los Angeles as we welcome AT&T Gigapower and Google Fiber to Los Angeles, and look forward to continuing to push Los Angeles to become the world’s premier gigabit city. Access to high-speed Internet is essential to the City’s future economic competitiveness, and will drive Los Angeles’s entertainment, tech, and entrepreneurial activity," said Blumenfield, who chairs the City’s Innovation, Grants, Technology, Commerce and Trade Committee.
On Monday, AT&T announced plans to bring GigaPower fiber broadband to Los Angeles, as well as low-cost Internet subscriptions to low income homes, making Los Angeles one of the first major cities in the United States where AT&T has decided to invest in its fiber build out. This morning, Google announced they are exploring rolling out their Google Fiber service to Los Angeles, a significant investment in Los Angeles’s virtual infrastructure that will provide Angelenos with high-speed and relatively low-cost Internet access.
Advise residents to “Lock It, Hide It, Keep It” to prevent theft.
CANOGA PARK – As the holiday shopping season gets underway, Councilmember Bob Blumenfield was joined today by LAPD Topanga Division along with to inform residents and shoppers about steps they can take to keep themselves and their belongings safe this holiday season.
Over the course of the 2014 holiday shopping season there were 82 incidences of burglary and theft from motor vehicles in Topanga Division. Residents and shoppers can minimize their chances of becoming a victim by limiting the criminal’s opportunities.
“The holiday shopping season is a great economic generator that many small businesses look forward to, but it can also become a magnet for crime,” said Blumenfield. “The easiest way to avoid becoming a victim is to take the opportunity away from the criminal.”
The Trust for Public Land will develop critically needed open space in Reseda as part of Blumenfield’s efforts to Green the Valley.
RESEDA – Los Angeles City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today broke ground on a new river park that will bring critically needed open space to Reseda along the banks of the Los Angeles River.
“This park will be a home base for us here in the West Valley, a destination for those down river, and an integral part of the transformation of the LA River ,” said Blumenfield. “Piece by piece, the people of Los Angeles are reclaiming the LA River as their own, and I’m so proud to have worked alongside the Trust for Public Land, Mayor Eric Garcetti and many others, to move this project forward.”
More than six years in the making, the Los Angeles River and Aliso Creek Confluence Project will create a two-acre park, one mile of walking paths, and three-quarter miles of bicycle path and greenway, 14 decorative entrance gates and a 100-foot long mural in the densely populated, urban community of Reseda. The project will transform a vacant lot alongside the river into a natural space that will provide habitat for wildlife and recreational green space for local residents. In total, the Aliso Creek Confluence project will bring nearly seven acres of new open space the LA River and Aliso Creek.
Once built, the Aliso Creek Confluence Project will connect to and enhance a planned 50-mile network of bicycle and walking paths along the LA River and provide the opportunity to expand the network along the river’s 51 miles.
Council approves new providers for innovative financing mechanism
LOS ANGELES, CA –Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today secured Council support to expand the number of Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing providers from two to four, increasing competition while expanding choice and lowering rates. PACE is a state-run program that assists property owners to finance upgrades by allowing them to be paid off as an assessment on their property taxes.
Today’s action follows previous Blumenfield initiatives to implement PACE for seismic retrofits and to engage the City in existing energy and water efficiency upgrade programs.
“I have long championed the PACE program as an innovative financing mechanism for critical energy, water, and seismic upgrades,” said Blumenfield. “Today’s action gives Angelenos choice as we work to build a resilient City.
Council moves forward airport commission decision with operations and safety recommendations.
LOS ANGELES, CA – The Los Angeles City Council today approved a proposal to allow Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) such as Uber and Lyft to operate at Los Angeles International Airport, including a series of recommendations put forward in last week’s in-depth hearings of the Trade, Commerce, and Technology Committee, which is chaired by Los Angeles City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield.
“Angelenos and visitors to our city are using services like Uber and Lyft to get to and from the airport in a manner that is unregulated, unmonitored, and inconvenient. Our challenge has been to meet the demands of a changing marketplace to ensure safety, transparency, and accessibility,” said Blumenfield. “Today, the Council embraced rather than hindered new technologies to provide the safe and convenient access Angelenos demand.”
Today’s action follows Council’s decision, pursuant to Charter Section 245, to review the Board of Airport Commissioners (BOAC) July 16, 2015 action to approve a Non-Exclusive License Agreement (NELA) covering Transportation Network Companies serving Los Angeles International Airport.
Trade, Commerce, and Technology Committee approves airport commission decision on Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) with recommendations.
LOS ANGELES, CA – The Los Angeles City Council’s Trade, Commerce, and Technology Committee (TCT) today endorsed a proposal to allow Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) such as Uber and Lyft to operate at Los Angeles International Airport, while setting out recommendations to enhance consumer protection and access.
“TNCs such as Uber and Lyft have changed the way Angelenos move around our City, and regulated or not, that has included to and from the airport,” said Blumenfield. “Today we voted with millions of consumers who demand convenient access to the airport in a way that is regulated, monitored, and above all, safe.”
Pursuant to Charter Section 245, the Committee, chaired by Los Angeles City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, voted 3-2 to move forward the Board of Airport Commissioners (BOAC) July 16, 2015 action to approve a Non-Exclusive License Agreement (NELA) covering Transportation Network Companies serving Los Angeles International Airport.
Blumenfield worked to create a process that was substantive and transparent, with testimony brought before the committee from subject-matter experts and stakeholders including representatives from LAWA, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), and ground transportation providers including Lyft and Uber as well as the taxi and livery industries.
New Woodland Hills park the result of extensive community outreach effort.
WOODLAND HILLS, CA – Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today was joined by representatives from the Department of Recreation and Parks, the Los Angeles Fire Department, the United Firefighters of Los Angeles and a host of neighbors and community members to cut the ribbon at the new Costanso Fire Station 84 Park in Woodland Hills.
Fire Station 84 operated at the corner of Canoga Ave. and Costanso St. from 1949 until being relocated to a new location in Warner Center in 2007. The vacant fire station remained unused and became blighted, overgrown with weeds and a place where illicit activity occurred. ln 2013, Blumenfield, newly elected to the Los Angeles City Council, undertook a massive community outreach effort to determine the future use of the site, and began working feverishly to transform the area.
“Today, I’m proudly checking this park opening off my list of first term priorities,” said Blumenfield. “The neighborhood around the old Fire Station 84 is one of the oldest and most beautiful in the Valley, but after years of neglect, the property had fallen into disrepair. After two years of hard work and community input, we have transformed what was a blighted piece of land into an incredible neighborhood resource.”
|Blumenfield is joined by Recreation and Parks officials, LAFD Firefighters, and the neighbors and kids of the Costanso neighborhood in Woodland Hills to cut the ribbon on the new Costanso Fire Station 84 Park, on July 2, 2015.
LOS ANGELES, CA – Responding to news reports that Amsterdam would not be following through on their planned Sister City relationship with Tel Aviv, Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today introduced a measure, co-presented by Councilmember Tom LaBonge, to urge Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard Van der Laan to move forward with the planned relationship between the two cities.
A vote to establish the relationship had been planned for July 1, but was has since been cancelled.
“As a City that opens its arms to the world and is committed to the promotion of global cooperation, cultural understanding and economic development through the Sister Cities movement, we in Los Angeles urge Mayor Van der Laan to reverse course and strengthen bilateral relations with Tel Aviv,” said Councilmember Bob Blumenfield. “Against the backdrop of increasing anti-semitic incidents in Holland and throughout Europe, building bridges of understanding with the only pluralistic democracy in the Middle East has never been more important.”
According to the country’s main anti-semitism watchdog, the Center for Information and Documentation on Israel (CIDI), anti-semitic incidents in Holland rose 71% in 2014.
Lanark Park Skate Plaza is the First Skatepark West of the Sepulveda Basin
CANOGA PARK, CA – Tony Hawk and members of the Birdhouse Skateboards team joined Councilmember Bob Blumenfield and City leaders today to help the community inaugurate the Lanark Skate Plaza: a brand new 14,000 sq. ft. street plaza style skatepark set among old-growth trees at Lanark Recreation Center in Canoga Park
Blumenfield joined the world famous skateboarder, the Birdhouse Team, and local youth, hopping on a skateboard to try out the new park.
“This is a great resource for the community,” said Blumenfield. “Growing up, I loved to skateboard, but we didn’t have anything like that. The Lanark Skate Plaza will be a great place for our kids to stay active, learn a sport, and do it in a way that is safe and fun.”
Lanark Recreation Center was identified as a potential skate park site by the Department of Recreation and Parks in 2008. Upon election to the City Council, in 2013 Blumenfield worked with Recreation and Parks to make this a priority project for the West Valley. The new skate plaza, designed by New Line Skateparks and built by California Skateparks, was partially funded by a Tony Hawk Foundation grant.
“I want to congratulate Canoga Park on this skatepark,” said Hawk. “We were happy to help, and it was the effort of the Councilman who made it happen and it’s exciting to be here.”
City Council Votes to Approve CityLinkLA Request for Participants.
LOS ANGELES, CA – The Los Angeles City Council today approved a Request for Participants (RFP) to identify one or more providers to commit to deploying advanced wireline and wireless networks that can provide one gigabit broadband speed or more to residences and businesses. The RFP asks proposers to provide a free level of service, including free basic wireless services, and to complete build-out within the next five years.
The RFP was issued as part of CityLinkLA, the long-term initiative led by Mayor Eric Garcetti and City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield to ensure that Los Angeles is among the most connected cities worldwide. The RFP received unanimous approval from Los Angeles City Council following remarks from supporters including Kenn Phillips of the Valley Economic Alliance and Norma Fernandez of EveryoneOn, a national non-profit organization dedicated to closing the digital divide.
“In today’s digital age, Internet access is a necessity, not a luxury. Today however, too many Angelenos do not have access to broadband, while many businesses and residents pay higher prices for slower speeds when compared to other global cities,” said Councilmember Blumenfield, who chairs the Council’s Innovation, Technology and General Services Committee. “Universal access to high-speed Internet is essential to the City’s future economic competitiveness, and will drive Los Angeles’s entertainment, tech and entrepreneurial activity. Free wireless Internet access will be a game changer in terms of helping to bridge the city’s digital divide.”
"More than 30% of our families in LA still don't have broadband Internet access. That presents real challenges in everyday life, from finding jobs to obtaining an education to participating in our City's social fabric," said Mayor Eric Garcetti. "Delivering digital infrastructure for access to the Internet is as important today as our other older infrastructure that delivers electricity, transportation, clean water, and lighted streets. This RFP makes City assets—real estate, strands of fiber optics, streetlights, and more—available to broadband providers, cellular operators, and new providers to continue the trend of faster speeds around LA and help us connect more of our residents, visitors, and businesses to the Internet."
"We've been in the 21st century for 15 years, it's time we move into the future,” said Council President Herb Wesson. "I am confident that with the right partners we will be able to position Los Angeles as a global leader in connectedness."
“CityLinkLA was created to deliver the high-speed, high-quality and affordable Internet that Angelenos need and deserve. Our goal is to see that all Los Angeles neighborhoods have equal access to advanced communications networks, allowing residents and businesses to take full advantage of Internet capabilities. We have set a course for the City’s technological future. We’re looking for providers that share our vision and are ready to invest now,” concluded Blumenfield.