Built in 1925, the Bob Hope Patriotic Hall provides a wide array of services to Los Angeles County Veterans, active members of the United States Armed Forces, and their dependents and survivors. As a hub for military and Veteran services in the County, Patriotic Hall serves over 30,000 visitors and holds over 1,000 events annually – but only has 63 parking spaces. In an effort to alleviate both parking demand at Patriotic Hall and homelessness in the First District, today the Board of Supervisors approved a motion authored by Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis that launches a feasibility study to build affordable housing for Veterans and their families and expand parking options on Patriotic Hall’s existing parking lot.
“As homelessness continues to grow, LA County is leading the way in identifying innovative solutions to this multifaceted crisis,” said Supervisor Solis. “Today’s action represents another step forward in my effort to utilize and maximize County resources to their fullest. Bob Hope Patriotic Hall is a jewel of LA County’s service offerings, and tens of thousands rely upon the resources housed within this historic building. By building towards the future of Veteran services in LA County, we hope to address Veteran homelessness and parking issues at Patriotic Hall so that we can improve outcomes and opportunities for Veterans and their families.”
Bob Hope Patriotic Hall provides office space for the County’s Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, other County Departments, and nonprofits and organizations such as the Veterans American Jobs Center of California and U.S. VETS. Patriotic Hall also hosts trainings, conferences, job fairs, and ceremonies that create spikes in parking demand and force those seeking services to find off-site parking.
As an active resource center for tens of thousands of County residents, Patriotic Hall’s adjacent parking lot, which consists of 63 existing parking spaces and is located between Lebanon Street and Flower Street, experiences an overwhelming demand. On a daily basis, those seeking services at the Hall are often relegated to trying to find off-site parking.
“Ten percent of all homeless veterans in the country are on the streets and in the homeless shelters of Los Angeles County. The One-Stop Veterans Service Center established at Patriotic Hall is a life-saving resource to veterans who are in need of assistance, but lack of parking at the Hall makes access difficult to at-risk veterans who so desperately need these services,” said Stephen Peck, President and CEO of U.S. VETS. “This action by Supervisor Solis not only addresses the parking issue, but adds much needed affordable housing to the site. Combining the existing support services with affordable housing creates a powerful resource that will help Los Angeles reduce the number of veterans and their families who are living on our streets.”
Today’s motion directs the County CEO to complete a parking needs assessment at Bob Hope Patriotic Hall, and work in coordination with the County Departments of Public Works and Military and Veterans Affairs, the LA County Development Authority, the Homeless Initiative, and LAHSA, to examine the feasibility of building both a parking structure and affordable housing on the existing parking lot. The affordable housing opportunities would be available for Veterans and their families, who would have easy access to all the services offered by Patriotic Hall.