News Ticker


Latest Post

Back To The Future Series

Celebrity Real Estate

Architecture and Real Estate


Filming Locations

Recent Posts

Taking A Very Long Break

Wednesday, May 18, 2016 / 4 Comments

When I first started blogging in March 2011, I had no idea what I wanted to do except simply talk about the SFV since I felt it needed a voice that wasnt being expressed elsewhere. 

In the ensuing posts that followed, the format and structure started to evolve into a "location stalking" theme where I would visit a specific location of interest like the former Valley Music Theatre in Woodland Hills and discuss its past, present, and future. Doing so would require a lot of time to research history, search for every and any photo available, visit the location, and compile into a readable and hopefully entertaining post. Sometimes the research was already there and it was just a matter of summarizing and posting pics. Other times the research was ambiguous like the actual location of the Desilu Ranch in Chatsworth which was rumored to be in three different locations where I was the first to confirm the true location and that it no longer existed.

But it didnt stop there as I would also scan and post my massive postcard collection. And then there was the celebrity real estate which would not only include the home being purchased or sold but past residences that no one else discussed especially if they were in the SFV. 

Also cant forget TV shows and movies filmed in the SFV where I would watch the movie, collect image stills, spend several minutes locating the scenes, and finally posting. If the actual locations of the scenes were not already found by another blogger, I would make the attempt to find it on my own which was quite the challenge when  the scenes offered very little clues. I essentially I had to dig into my "driving around the SFV memory banks" to match a location or clue to that scene. One movie that comes to mind that I have not seen anyone else discuss is the iconic Van Nuys Blvd from 1979 that really showcased the teen car culture emblematic throughout the nation at that time.

Lastly, the hidden and rarely discussed real estate and architecture side of the SFV. Like much of L.A. there is a lot of great architecture out there but its hidden from the general public tucked away in some hillside or neighborhood. My goal was to alert readers whenever one of these masterpieces was hitting the selling block. Or as of late, the continuing trend to demolish and build new, like the almost demolished Lautner designed "spaceship" rehabilitation center in Woodland Hills. I was the first to alert the good folks at the LA Conservancy who filed an appeal with the City literally a day from being a memory. Today, it has been preserved by a Jewish organization which will hopefully stay for generations to come.

Aside from the "location stalking" theme I mentioned above, my other primary goal was to demonstrate how the SFV was connected to the world. How you can be in any other part of this world and find some unexpected connection to the SFV. Like a space enthusiast who loved the Apollo missions where the Rocketdyne engines were built and tested in the SFV. Or a Michael Jackson fan who lived in Encino but his family now resides in Calabasas. Or a Guns 'N' Roses fan where the Appetite for Destruction album was recorded in Canoga Park. Or a Karate Kid fan with its story based and filmed in the SFV. Or a Neutra architecture fan. And the list goes on and on. 

I believe I accomplished some of that but as I researched more, I found more topics that I wanted to cover but there just wasnt enough time. The advertising you see here was an experiment on how much money Google makes and the peanuts I get in return. So ideally, it would be nice to hire a staff to accomplish my daily goals but that is not in the budget right now. 

Everyday a new story development would pop up that needed my time at the end of a long working day and attending to other priorities after work that would leave me burning the midnight oil to ensure the story was completed and ready for the following day like as if I was a true newspaper organization. This consistency and persistence paid off as I have accumulated over 1000 posts ranging in the various topics mentioned above. 

But that clock-like process also took me away from other matters that was more important like my health and family. Healthwise I am doing okay but my family is a different story. And as a result I cannot continue hurting myself and the others around me. 

Which brings me to the image above. It was from a scene in The Simpsons but I forget which one. Again using the "connected" theme, 3 of the items on the list are from the SFV where the writers could have used any other locations in this massive city of L.A. but managed to use some from the SFV that was featured on a worldwide popular TV show viewed by both adults and children.

So I dont know when I will return. Maybe next year or my retirement in 30 years. I definitely need to be in a position where I am comfortable and have time. The good news is that I am not shutting down the blog because there is too much good reference material plus I spent way too much time just to see it erase from the internet in one click. My email will still be active at for any inquiries. 

Its been a labor of love and pleasure. Thanks to my 5 loyal readers,

Marty McFly

Celeb R.E Everybody Loves Ray Romano Lists Woodland Hills Gated Home at a Loss

Friday, April 15, 2016 / 2 Comments

Image courtesy Teles Properties/Romano pic courtesy Wikipedia/SAMHSA
Everybody Loves Raymond star, Ray Romano has quietly listed his Woodland Hills gated home for $975,000 on March 2, 2016. The use of this home is not known but must be for family or an investment property as Romano lives in Encino and Malibu discussed below. At the time of writing this post, this home went into a pending status about 6 days later after being listed. 

The home measures 4 Beds/3 Baths on 2,682 sqft on a total lot size of 21,778 sqft built in 1997. The listing description states: 
Fantastic single story located in the Gated Community of Penfield Estates. Open floor plan leads to a spectacular almost 22,000 Sq Ft lot with a beautiful pool, waterfall, Spa, Fire Pit and Pergola. Built-in BBQ area and covered patio perfect for entertaining. Cooks kitchen is open to family room with fireplace. Area is a convenient location to the new Village on Topanga Cyn, which is home to many restaurants and stores. Close proximity to the Orange Line Station, freeways and Pierce College.
Romano purchased this home at the height of the housing bubble on Mary 24, 2005 for $1.1 million which if sold at the asking price translates into $120,500 loss not including expenses. But that's like pocket change for Romano who has a net worth north of $130 million.

Image courtesy Bing Maps
In addition to the Woodland Hills home, Romano's main home is located in Encino (shown above) which was purchased on November 5, 1999 which was probably a land or tear down purchase as a new home was built in 2002. 

Image courtesy Berkshire Hathaway HomeService
In addition to the main Encino home, Romano owned another smaller Encino home (shown above) that must have been an investment that was purchased for $655,000 on October 20, 2009 and sold a year later for $990,000 on July 2, 2010 translating into $335K gain less than a years time. 

Image courtesy Bing Maps
And when Romano needs to get out of the suburbs, he hides at his Malibu Broad Beach home (shown above) that was purchased on February 12, 2004 for $8,395,000. 

You can view more SFV Celeb R.E. here

Karate Kid's Empty Field in Reseda to be Developed into 16 SFH's

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 / 2 Comments

Image courtesy Bing Maps
Image courtesy Google Maps

Remember that time in Karate Kid when "Daniel-son" played by Ralph Macchio was at the high school Halloween dance and to get revenge on the bully kids led by "Johnny Lawrence," "Daniel-son" quietly placed a garden hose above Lawrence's head while he was sitting on the toilet getting him soaking wet when he cranked the faucet on. Afterwards, "Daniel-son" ran as fast as he could back home towards an empty field where he was about one step from scaling the fence to the South Seas apartment to make it home. At that point, Lawrence and his cronies caught up with "Daniel-son" and beat the crap out of him before "Mr.Miyagi" saved the day and then proceeded to beat the crap out of Lawrence and his gang. 

Well, that location which has long remained an empty field since at least the making of this movie back in 1984 will soon be developed.  I am actually quite late on this story as a public hearing was held back on September 15, 2015 to build 16 single family home with a minimum of 2 covered parking spaces (see below). I am assuming this project will be fully approved but as of today, I have not seen any development activity. 

The project will take place at 19141 - 19215 Saticoy Street and 19140 - 19200 Lull Street in beautiful Reseda. The property is broken down into 6 parcels which consist of:
  1. 19215 Saticoy St; 22,643 sqft vacant lot owned by Bagstad Group One LP based in Seal Beach. 
  2. No Address (Parcel ID# 2104012026): 21,673 sqft vacant lot owned by WH Saticoy 16 LLC which acquired the property on December 26, 2014 for $1,680,000 from the Jakobovits Living Trust and Grossman Living Trust which also includes parcels #3 - #6 (more on the buying and selling parties below).  
  3. 19201 Saticoy St: 21,652 sqft vacant lot owned and acquired by the same entity as in #2. 
  4. 19155 Saticoy St: 21,662 sqft vacant lot owned and acquired by the same entity as in #2. 
  5. 19149 Saticoy St: 21,663 sqft vacant lot owned and acquired by the same entity as in #2.
  6. 19141 Saticoy St: 21,667 sqft vacant lot owned and acquired by the same entity as in #2.

The LLC links back to Williams Homes based in Santa Clarita. Another surprise during my research is that the previous owners of this land were the Harry Grossman and Jakobovits Trust who also owned that other massive open land on Winnetka and Parthenia that was sold to and is currently being developed by.....wait for it....Williams Homes that was discussed on this blog. 

On a historical note, it looks like there was at least one home on this propertywhere parcels #4, 5, and 6 are located. Dont know the history here but the property remained until 2005. Parcels #1, #2, and #3 appeared to always be empty.

And on a related note, the South Seas Apartments sold last year for $4,250,000 on June 5, 2015 which was also discussed on this blog. Lastly, you can read about the filming locations for this awesome movie here.

And the actual movie clip from that location:

You can view more SFV Architecture and R.E. here

Another Mixed-Use Project Planned for Warner Center Behind Fry's Electronic's

Saturday, March 26, 2016 / No Comments
Image courtesy Bing Maps
Image courtesy Google Maps
The always first to know folks at Urbanize.LA first blogged about this project on January 13, 2016 which calls for the construction of a five-story, 328,000 sqft building containing about 275 residential units in the first phase. The second phase would consist of a 12-story, 180 ft tower with 80,000 sqft of commerical space. Also included are 480 parking spaces with 401 spaces for residents and 79 spaces for office tenants. This project will be located at 6041 - 6045 Variel Ave just behind Fry's Electronics and the Panavision Offices near Oxnard St. 

This project was initially presented to the Woodland Hills Warner Center Neighborhood Council back on January 7, 2016 with plans for filing to the City's Planning department in February. I have not seen or heard anything since so I am assuming that this project is too going through iterations. One thing to keep in mind is that this project is inline with the Warner Center 2035 Plan so it will most likely get approved. The timeline for the project and the developer are unknown at this time. However, the number of mixed-use projects in this area is staggering and by 2035, this area will truly be unrecognizable. 

The current property measures 53,320 sqft on a total lot size of 130,781 sqft built in 1973 which is owned by Selective 6041 Variel LLC. The LLC purchased this property from Toluca Moorpark LTD on May 9, 2007 for $11,575,000. 

You can view more SFV Architecture and R.E. here

Luxury Apts. Planned for Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse Formerly Tower Records in Warner Center

Image courtesy Google Maps
Image courtesy Bing Maps
I am about a month late reporting this one but the SFVBJ revealed back on Feb 18, 2016 that California Home Builders of Canoga Park purchased the property at 6263 Topanga Canyon Blvd (currently the home of Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse) for $27,880,000 on February 9, 2016 from PCQ Woodland Hills Topanga LLC which links back to El Segundo's Paragon Commercial Group. 

There are no specific details about the apartments aside for the planning of 300 units and common areas including a pool, barbeque pits, a rooftop lounge, and co-working office space. The new apartment building is in a prime location with walking distance to the new Village, the Topanga Plaza, the Orange Line, and other nearby shopping centers. 

The property also has addresses of 6325 and 6323 Topanga Canyon Blvd and 22010 Victory Blvd. I believe the property records include the office building next door but I dont believe this was part of this transaction. The building measures 28,433 sqft on a total lot size of 118,927 sqft built in 1966. 

Long time residents will remember this location as being the home of The Good Guys! (an electronics store before Best Buy) where I purchased many audio equipment and later became a Tower Records where I also purchased many records. I posted the only pics I could find below of these former sites including one postcard I own. 

Tower Records can be seen on the left. Image courtesy
You can see back of postcard here
Some may recognize the name California Home Builders who are active developers in the area who are currently building 90 homes at the former Rocketdyne Fitness Center at Roscoe and Fallbrook (which I blogged about here), 200 apartments at the former Panavision Office on De Soto, and a number of smaller projects throughout the SFV which can be seen here

You can view more SFV Architecture and R.E. here.

14 Small Lot Home Planned for NoHo's Art District

Friday, March 25, 2016 / No Comments
Above image courtesy Bing Maps
11027 Morrison St
11035, 11037, or 11037.5 Morrison St
11035, 11037, or 11037.5 Morrison St
11035, 11037, or 11037.5 Morrison St. Above images courtesy Google Maps
This latest development proposal is located at 11027 - 11037.5 Morrison Ave in North Hollywood in between Lankershim Blvd and Vineland Ave within prime walking distance to the Red Line and NoHo Arts District. The proposal is the construction of 14 small lot homes with an attached 2 car garage and a laughable three guest parking spaces. I apologize for posting this late as the hearing was held on March 15, 2016. My guess is that everything was approved. 

11027 Morrison St is a 7,509 vacant lot. 11035 Morrison St (including  addresses 11037 and 11037.5) is a 2 Bed/1 Bath on 894 sqft on a total lot size of 8,912 sqft built in 1939.  There are multiple buildings on this property not included in the above details. All buildings and trees will be demolished. Both properties were acquired by Noho Morrison LLC on September 11, 2015 for $1.4 million. 

You can view more SFV Architecture and Real Estate here.

12 Unit Apartment Building Planned for Canoga Park's Owensmouth Ave

Thursday, March 24, 2016 / No Comments
Image courtesy Bing Maps
Image courtesy Google Maps
This latest development proposal is located at 6936 Owensmouth Ave in Canoga Park near CP high school, LA River Headwaters, and Vanowen St. The proposal is a 3 level 12 unit apartment building with 24 automobile parking spaces in a subterranean level and 14 bicycle parking spaces. 

One single family home exists on the property which will be demolished. That home measures 3 Beds/2 Baths on 1,070 sqft on a total lot size of 8,000 sqft built in 1952.  The property was acquired by Owensmouth Properties LLC on August 18, 2010 for $250K. The LLC links back to Shahriar and Souzan Rostami of Calabasas. 

You can view more SFV Architecture and Real Estate here.