Saturday, August 16, 2014

Healy Heights Park

Healy Heights Park

Today's adventure takes us to little Healy Heights Park, in the West Hills a bit south and east of Council Crest. I only have one photo of the park; this blog is a peculiar sort of hobby, and I was actually looking for the tiny sorta-parks at Carl Place & Patrick Place. This actual park was on the way, so I figured I'd take a photo and get an extra blog post out of the excursion.

I'd actually tracked the park down once before, several years ago. I saw it on a map and assumed there would be a nice view from here, it being high in the West Hills and all. There was no view at all, though, nor anything else that looked particularly photogenic. I suppose that's how the land ended up as a park: It's not "wasting" valuable view property, and it doesn't have a view to attract riffraff photographers and other tourists from outside the neighborhood. Instead it's just your standard pleasant neighborhood park with a playground, sports fields, a drinking fountain, that's about it. If you don't live nearby, there's no particular reason to go seek it out. On top of everything else, there are also stern "No Parking" signs forbidding visitors to park anywhere nearby. I'd be kind of leery of using the ball fields anyway; I'd hate to break some rich person's window with a foul ball. There would be lawyers involved, because there are always lawyers involved, and you'd probably have to fly a bunch of stained glass artisans out from Venice to reconstruct it, obviously at your expense. In any case, I sort of shrugged and crossed it off the places I was interested in. That I'm doing a post about it now suggests that I'm either running out of material, or I've dropped my standards a bit, or both.

The land for the park was purchased, landscaped, and then donated to the city in 1951 by what was essentially the local HOA, for a playground, initially restricted to kids under high school age. Maybe that was intended to exclude the "juvenile delinquents" everyone was so paranoid about back then, although the article doesn't explicitly say so.

All snark aside, though, I'd rather have rich people living up in the hills next to the city and using public parks along with everyone else, rather than clustered in gated communities in a distant exurb, viewing the city with raw, boundless malice, which is what you get in most cities.


Anonymous said...

I was wondering if you knew anything about the Richfield sign that was located nearby from 1928 until the early 1940's? The letters were 60' tall and illuminated by orange neon lights. It was said to be visible for 50 miles and legible for 10.
There's a photo of it on Facebook. Search: dead council crest and hills sw.

brx0 _ said...

My understanding is that it was located somewhere off SW Carl Place, near where the KGON radio tower is now. I found a photo of it here, although it's not a great photo and just shows the sign off in the distance.