Runyon Canyon, where Hollywood stars and their dogs go to hike, network, and dream, is closing its celebrated trails from April to July.
It’s hard to understate the impact this will have on Los Angeles. Dogs will get fat. Instead of hiking before they go to The Griddle for breakfast, people will do nothing. Sunglasses sales will plummet. Us Weekly will have to go somewhere else to snap pictures of walking stars walking for the “Celebrities — they’re just like us!” section.
When the trails close, the good people who sell water and granola bars by the Fuller gate, on the honors system, will have less walking-around money. Ditto the guy who sells pineapple with lemon juice and cayenne pepper for $6 on Fuller and Franklin. Deals will not get done. People will not fall in love. Dogs will not fall in love.
It is also hard to underestimate how much this will affect me personally. My dog and I fell in love hiking Runyon’s trails in 2004. I saw Ben Stiller jogging there — uphill. My ex-girlfriend saw Jessica Alba. I wrote a novel once, and not one but two crucial scenes take place at Runyon Canyon.
Also: Everyone who lives anywhere near Runyon has a million stories like this.
It is where Los Angeles goes to relax, and be beautiful, and perhaps a trifle narcissistic. That ridiculous picture above? It’s from Runyon’s official Instagram account.
The horrible news came from Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu, who had the guts to step up and announce the temporary closure that is breaking a city’s heart. Here’s his official statement:
Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu along with LADWP, The Department of Recreation and Parks, the Los Angeles Fire Department, and Friends of Runyon Canyon will announce a temporary closure of Runyon Canyon Park from April to July 2016 for pipe replacement work. The Runyon Canyon Park Yoga Field will remain open throughout the construction project. However, the hiking trails and all other areas will be closed to the public.
The Runyon Canyon Water System Improvement Project (RCWSIP) will provide the community with an improved fire protection system, reduction in pipe breaks and water quality improvements for surrounding communities. The project scope includes replacing approximately 1 mile of 6-inch pipe that runs through the park.
Yeah, he even had the guts to mention laying “6-inch pipe” in a public setting. Come on, dude.
There’s always Griffith Park, I guess.