Tuesday morning, Sheriff’s officers, acting on behalf of Apartment Investment and Management Company (AIMCO), which owns Lincoln Place, an apartment complex in Venice, locked 52 residents out of their apartments.
The lock-out was the latest turn in the long-running struggle between the residents and AIMCO.
The tenants alleged that the evictions are illegal as “they are in clear violation of the tenant protection conditions of the only approved development plan for the site, the Vesting Tentative Tract Map 51337 (the ‘VTT’).”
L.A. City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, who represents Venice, issued the following statement in the wake of the lock-outs: “Earlier today, AIMCO, the owners of the Lincoln Place Garden Apartments in Venice, locked out more than 50 families from their homes.
“These evictions are a travesty, an injustice, and a great shame. They represent an assault on affordable housing, a slap in the face to renters everywhere, and insult to the community of Venice and its elected representatives.
“For months, I have called on AIMCO to halt these evictions. I reiterate and underscore that statement today, and I urge AIMCO to allow tenants to return to their homes:
“AIMCO, do the right thing. Unlock those doors. Return to the bargaining table and negotiate in good faith with these tenants.
“Earlier this fall, my office and the office of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa brokered a proposed settlement that would have preserved 242 units at Lincoln Place, and allowed every tenant to remain there for life at below-market rent. Sadly, that deal fell apart. I still believe it is a solid deal, and hope that it can be the basis for a renewed round of negotiations.”
Some Lincoln Place tenants, community activists and historic preservationists oppose the “deal” that Rosendahl refers to, preferring a plan that would preserve the historic complex and all of its remaining affordable housing.(see related editorial, page 6)