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Preparations for LAPD gala block downtown traffic lane, close sidewalks

Downtown denizens who thought the high fences and blocked sidewalks and traffic lanes at the new LAPD headquarters were a memory now that the building (and its, um, interesting public artwork) is complete were wrong.

To prepare for the True Blue gala, a benefit for the Los Angeles Police Foundation, a lane of Spring Street has been shut down, and sidewalks along Spring and 2nd streets are off-limits.

The gala, which will be held Nov. 7, will commemorate the LAPD’s 140-year history and pay tribute to departing Chief William Bratton. About 800 people are expected at the event, which will take over the entire city block, including the grassy one-acre park, which has been tented with a large white canopy.

Intended to invoke the 1940s and the famed Cocoanut Grove nightclub, the event will by emceed by "Tonight Show" host Conan O’Brien. Guests will nosh on cuisine from Wolfgang Puck and tour the 11-story headquarters. The $5,000 table sponsorships are sold out, but pricier packages are still available, up to the $100,000 platinum star sponsor package. Individual tickets go for $600.

-- Seema Mehta

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Comments () | Archives (2)

So what? Organizations block streets and sidewalks all the time for special events. Think Disney Concert Hall. So just because it's the police department they aren't allowed to do this? This is a pointless story.

It's unseemly for the police to put on a public display of such extravagance celebration given that the city, county and state are broke, have one of the nation's highest unemployment rates, and that the police have engaged in numerous unnecessary use of force incidents such as their recent thugish tactics at McArthur Park. Is any of it funded by the taxpayers?

Perhaps a more low-key celebration might be appropriate and equally appreciative of the police.


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