Tomorrow, another breakaway Valley neighborhood will have its hearing downtown and most likely, the Posoville (Part of Sherman Oaks) District of Van Nuys will become “Sherman Oaks”.
The “victory” that the slick, script-reading, angry ladies of Posoville desire is to completely drop out of the Van Nuys community, and join a richer, better regarded area. Their tireless efforts have not included petitioning the City for more police protection, or to clean up the streets, or to stop cars from driving dangerously as they run red lights at the corner of Kester and Burbank. They want a new name, not a new city, and they surely will get it.
In their mythical story line, this orphaned neighborhood was somehow left out of Sherman Oaks even though it literally abuts the downtown area of Van Nuys (established 1911). Posoville is two miles north of Ventura and Van Nuys Blvd. and shares nothing in common with the tony, shaded, wealthy Sherman Oaks that crawls up to Mulholland and into BelAir.
Just north of Posoville, in old Van Nuys, the corner of Kester and Victory is a good place to observe what decay and neglect mean, and to ponder the real efforts of residents to live normal, healthy lives in an environment where filth reigns supreme.
I have written for several years, and alerted Tony Cardenas’ office, about the slum mall on the NE corner of Kester and Victory. A $10 broom and a $3 dustpan would work wonders here, but the owner has adamantly refused to do anything to clean his dirty curbs. Every morning, dozens of unemployed men wait here for work, and there are also businesses that pay rent here, and an enormous billboard sign generating income…so Mr. Fogel has no excuse for his civic indifference. This property is “Exhibit A” in why people like the Posoville contingent are so disgusted and willing to run away from Van Nuys rather than speak up to change the conditions that embarrass us all.
Just a block north of the slum mall, is Van Nuys High School. On a recent summer evening, there were tennis lessons going on, a basketball game, and people-playing handball. On the track, women and men who live on a daily diet of orange soda and fried plantains, were walking briskly, trying to fight the effects of their regular nutritional diet.
I spoke to a friendly, smiling man named Jorge, age 35, who came here to jog and recalled the “glory days” of Van Nuys High School in the 1980’s. “Hey, I like your camera,” he said. “Do you come here to take photos of Van Nuys High School?” he asked. I told him I published a blog about the area. “Hey, have a good night!” he said as he ran off.
There are facilities here, mostly run down, but very utilized and appreciated by the community.
This is Van Nuys: good and bad.