Entertainment Complex Sells for More then $200 Million
Maguire Properties (PARA) sold the Lantana Media Campus which is located in Santa Monica, on Olympic Boulevard in the eastern section of the city. The buyers of the property were Lionstone Group, out of Houston and the Recording Academy, which facilitates the Grammy Awards. This was the largest Real Estate deal in Los Angeles County for 2009.
Checkmate on Chess Program at Fairview Library
For the past five years, each Thursday afternoon at the Fairview Branch Public Library, a diverse group of people met to play chess. The chess program is ending, reportedly due to budget cuts which reduce the money for staff hours. The program will be moved to the­­ Ocean Park branch, despite its own 5 percent budget cut.
Graffiti Attack in Sunset Park
A late-night graffiti attack in the Sunset Park neighborhood Sunday night/Monday morning left 11 cars vandalized, one of them burglarized, and another one the victim of attempted burglary, according to the Santa Monica Police Department. The cars were defaced with spray paint, as were signs in the neighborhood and the street pavement; no homes were “tagged,” but a wooden fence and a cinder block wall were, said SMPD Sgt. Jay Trisler.
There was no indication as to the motive for the crime or the selection of the particular location.
First Federal Bank of California Closes
On Friday, December 25 the First Federal Bank of California joined the list of 16 Californian banks that have closed this year, ending its 80 years in business. The bank opened its first Santa Monica office in 1929.
First Federal and its parent company, FirstFed Financial Corp., were staples of the Santa Monica financial community for years, with corporate headquarters in the building that bore their name at Wilshire Boulevard and 4th Street. The company was a frequent sponsor of local nonprofit endeavors, including the Westside Shelter and Hunger Coalition’s Super Bowl-a-thon for which it has been the “Perfect Game” title sponsor for six consecutive years.
The bank reportedly was shut down by federal regulators due to their continued poor performances. OneWest Bank, which was formed earlier this year from the remains of failed mortgage lender Indy Mac. and already generating hefty profits, purchased First Federal and its 6.1 billion in assets. According to FDIC documents, OneWest paid $401 million or a 6.6% premium for First Federal’s assets.
The first downside signal came earlier in the year when the First Federal was forced to halt lending. The deposit will continue to be insured by FDIC; therefore the customers can retain their deposit insurance coverage.