LA’s first prefab tiny home village for the homeless opened this year as a ‘test case’ for the city – see how it’s doing now

Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.
Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

  • Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission’s Chandler Street Tiny Home Village first opened in February.
  • The village was created to temporarily house North Hollywood’s unhoused residents.
  • See how the Los Angeles’ first tiny home community is doing now, and how it’s inspired similar developments.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.
In February, an unassuming and “forgotten” corner of North Hollywood, Los Angeles, was transformed into a colorful village of tiny homes run by nonprofit Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission.

Chandler Boulevard Bridge Home Village
The Chandler Boulevard Bridge Home Village.

Source: Insider

City officials first scouted the teardrop-shaped infill lot when they were looking for a place to build “bridge” homes, or shelters meant to aid in finding unhoused residents a permanent home.

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The entrance to the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village

Now, 43 residents call the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village their (temporary) home, just a few months after the community’s February grand opening.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Lehrer Architects, which designed the tiny home community with the city’s Bureau of Engineering, had a $3.49 million budget for the project. But foundational work – including street leveling and sewer lines – became the most expensive component of the project.

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The laundry facility at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Despite this cost, the beta project’s shelters “add real value” to the once vacant lot, according to Lehrer Architects.

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The entrance to the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Source: Lehrer Architects

Chandler Village was the first tiny home community Hope of the Valley had planned for Los Angeles.

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The bed inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

It’s since served as a “test case” for the city, Rowan Vansleve, CFO of Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission, told Insider.

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A tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The nonprofit has already opened its second tiny home village, pictured below, about two miles away from the initial community, riding off of the success of the Chandler site.

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The Alexandria Park Tiny Home Village.

Source: Insider

The new site, the Alexandria Park Tiny Home Village, is much larger than the original “test case” Chandler site pictured below. It’ll have 200 beds, a significant uptick from Chandler’s 75 beds

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Source: Insider

“They had taken another piece of unused land that had encampments on it and they used the learnings of that to build [the new Alexandria Park village],” Vansleve said.

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A peek through the fence into the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

By starting with the Chandler site, the nonprofit learned that the village’s bright colors worked well, but that any upcoming villages would need more on-site offices for case managers.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

These learnings were then applied to the new Alexandria site, and will dictate how the nonprofit’s future tiny home villages will look.

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The entrance into the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

This includes upcoming communities in the San Fernando Valley region of Los Angeles, which will be open in the next two months.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

But now, let’s take a closer look at the first tiny home village that started it all.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

In April, I took a tour of the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village, which has 40 tiny homes and 75 beds.

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The window of a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Source: Hope of the Valley

After being temperature checked by a guard at the entrance of the community, I walked past a series of lockers into the fenced village.

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The entrance into the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The lockers are meant to secure the residents’ items that aren’t allowed inside of the village, whether it be drugs or personal defense weapons, Vansleve told me while we toured the Alexandria Park location.

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The entrance into the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

An outdoor smoking area and the restroom facilities with showers sit right across from the entrance.

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The smoking area at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

From there, I turned the corner and was immediately greeted by the line-up of tiny homes, an outdoor seating area, and shipping container-like buildings.

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Outdoor communal areas at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village

The shipping container-like buildings make up the communal facilities, which include a laundry room. It’s also where the case workers are located.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The village also offers its residents three meals a day here.

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A cup at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The outdoor communal tables are located right next to these facilities and in front of the small dog park, which sits at the center of the village.

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The dog park at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Surrounding these public amenities are the tiny homes.

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The outdoor tables and a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Several of these tiny homes have already been personalized with flowers, flags, and posters.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Each tiny home has an entry door that can be locked, a luxury some of the residents might not have had prior.

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The lock on the door of a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“Achieving this level of privacy and security is not possible in a traditional shelter,” Michael Lehrer and Nerin Kadribegovic, Lehrer Architects’ founding partner and partner, respectively, told Insider in an email interview in February. “The evocation of a child’s drawing of a ‘house’ and even Monopoly’s homes reinforces the idea of ‘home.'”

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The bed inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The interior has all of the basic amenities needed to live in a tiny home in Los Angeles, including a bed, a heater …

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Inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

… an air conditioning unit, windows, shelves, and a desk.

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The air conditioning unit inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The units were all created by Washington-based Pallet, which specializes in creating prefab tiny homes that can be quickly assembled to create homes for people who may have been unhoused due to natural or personal disasters.

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Inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“What we felt was really missing from the housing spectrum was a dignified shelter option that honored their individuality and allowed them to have autonomy in their rehabilitation process,” Amy King, founder and CEO of Pallet, told Insider in January.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Source: Insider

Parts of the community, including some of the tiny homes, have been painted bright reds, yellows, and blues to keep the village feeling colorful and non-“institutional,” according to Vansleve.

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The smoking area of the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Source: Insider

However, it wasn’t the community’s bright colors that caught my attention. It was the people.

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Two people at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The village’s residents were friendlier than my own neighbors: almost every person I walked by smiled and said “hello.”

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

And before I left, I had a chat with someone in the village who told me about their daughter, son in college, and interest in other cultures.

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A desk and chair inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The conversation reminded me of something Vansleve told me during our chat at the new Alexandria Park location: “I look at people on the street [in their late 60s, early 70s] and some of them could be my mum. They’ve experienced incredible amounts of trauma and they’re left on the street. I think it’s a moral issue.”

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Communal areas at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Think of Chandler Street Tiny Home Village as a transitioning place for its residents.

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A tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The goal of the village, and Hope of the Valley’s upcoming sites, is to provide its residents with stability and a temporary home while helping them eventually transition into more permanent housing.

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Inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

When a new resident arrives, the community’s employees, which include case workers, will help the new individual with a list of personal needs.

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The Pallet logo on a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“Here it’s more supportive, more in-depth,” Priscilla Rodriguez, a case manager at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village, told Insider. “When somebody comes in, they could be at the very beginning.”

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

From there, case workers will help the residents receive necessary paperwork like an ID, a social security card, or a birth certificate.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The team will also help its residents find income. This could be unemployment benefits at first, but will hopefully lead to a job or Supplemental Security Income.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The case workers even help with life skills, which could include teaching them how to keep their tiny homes clean or encouraging them to bathe everyday.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Workers will also connect the residents to doctors and physicians for both mental and physical healthcare.

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The laundry facility at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“Some of them wanted to bring their tents into their home because they’re not used to coming out of that setting and transitioning back into permanent housing,” Rodriguez said.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

This is the “transition” case workers like Rodriguez are trying to help with.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“They are going to be housed on their own one day, and we want to help support them in every way so that way when they get there, they feel confident to be there and to keep that house on their own,” Rodriguez said.

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A window inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The program lasts for 90 days, but can be extended for an additional 90 days if they find the resident is making good headway and improvements, and is “actively working” with the case managers to meet goals.

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The outdoor tables and tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“All we need from them is just to connect with us,” Rodriguez said. “Just tell us what you need.”

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The dog park at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Every resident in this current batch has already received an extension because the village and program is so new. But moving forward, the goal is for residents to meet the 90-day timeline.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Each resident gets to dictate the pace at which they move, and right now, many of them are showing “tremendous progress.”

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The majority of the 43 residents currently being housed at the Chandler site are on track to be housed independently, which is the ultimate goal of the program.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“We really are showing that the program is working,” Rodriguez said.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

In order to qualify for a bed at the village, an outreach worker, often from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, has to verify that the potential resident is homeless and resides within a few miles of the village.

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Inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The Chandler site has been so popular there’s already a waitlist for the beds.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The team will accept anyone into the village, even if they have substance abuse or mental health issues, physical disabilities, or legal problems.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“We’re just people who were trying to help these participants better their life,” Rodriguez said. “They’re not trying to harm the community in any way, they’re trying to get themselves back into that community.”

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

And despite the ongoing pandemic, the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village hasn’t had any COVID-19 outbreaks.

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Communal areas at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The tiny homes each typically shelter up to two people, but due to the virus, only couples are allowed to share a unit.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

And every one to two weeks, the village offers COVID-19 testing on-site.

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The fence and a sign at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Several residents have already received their first round of vaccines as well.

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Inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Many of the residents have also been complying with face mask wearing, social distancing, and sanitizing protocols, according to Rodriguez.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Despite the work Chandler Street is doing for the homeless community, the program has experienced some protests and hecklers.

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Tiny homes and outdoor tables at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The hecklers “just want to cause a scene saying we’ve got drug addicts and criminals in here,” according to Rodriguez.

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“It’s sad to see the pushback because any one of us could be here at any point,” Rodriguez said. “You never know what it’s gonna take to make you homeless, especially during a covid year.”

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Tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

Despite this, the village and its program has so far been a success, and has already attracted international attention.

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The tiny homes at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

As a “test case” for future tiny home communities, and since most residents are on track to be permanently housed, the concept has served as an inspiration for people around the world.

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Communal areas at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

The Chandler site has even seen out-of-country visitors who have been interested in incorporating a similar idea in their own city or state.

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A tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

“It’s making a big impact,” Rodriguez said. “They see that we have had a lot of success with this program, so I definitely see it expanding … hopefully all over the country and in other nations as well.”

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Inside a tiny home at the Chandler Street Tiny Home Village.

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Los Angeles County could reach herd immunity by end of July, health officials say

covid vaccine
A medical assistant administers a COVID-19 vaccine dose to a woman at a clinic in Los Angeles on March 25, 2021.

  • Los Angeles County could reach herd immunity by mid to late July, public health officials said.
  • At the current rate of vaccination, roughly 80% of adult and adolescent county residents could have at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Though there isn’t a specific percentage of the county population needed to reach herd immunity, officials have estimated it to be about 80%.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Public health officials predicted Monday that Los Angeles county could reach COVID-19 herd immunity by mid-to-late July.

Barbara Ferrer, the public health director of Los Angeles County, made the prediction during a press briefing on Monday, saying the county could hit herd immunity when roughly 80% of LA County residents ages 16 and older will have at least one shot.

At least 400,000 doses are being administered each week in LA County. At least 2 million more first doses must be administered before 80% of adults and adolescents in LA County will have at least one shot.

“At the rate we’re going, we expect that we can reach this level somewhere in mid to late July, and that assumes that we continue to have at least 400,000 people vaccinated each week that will include both first doses that people need, as well as their second doses,” Ferrer said during the briefing.

In a press release on Monday, county health officials also noted they do not have the exact vaccinated percentage of the county’s population needed to achieve community immunity, but estimate it would be around 80%.

Late last year, top US infections disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci previously estimated that the US would need to inoculate between 75% to 85% of Americans to reach herd immunity, but in a White House briefing in late April, he shifted attention away from the figures of herd immunity to just getting people vaccinated.

“Rather than concentrating on an elusive number, let’s get as many people vaccinated as quickly as we possibly can,” Fauci said.

The announcement that LA County could reach herd immunity by the end of July comes after the Food and Drug Administration authorized the use of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in adolescents ages 12-15. An advisory committee will review clinical trial data of the vaccine in teenagers before affirming the FDA recommendation, which could come as early as later this week.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Los Angeles County reported zero COVID-19 deaths for the second day in a row

Los Angeles Coronavirus
A Covid-19 warning sign in Los Angeles, California.

  • Los Angeles county reported no new COVID-19 deaths for the second day in a row on Monday.
  • The last time the county reported no new deaths twice in a row was in March 2020.
  • COVID-19 cases and deaths in LA county have slowly been decreasing as vaccine efforts ramp up.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Los Angeles County reported no new COVID-19 deaths for the second day in a row, county health officials announced Monday.

This is the first time the nation’s most populous county had reported no additional deaths from COVID-19 for two consecutive days since March 18, 2020, according to county data. County health officials said in a statement that the number of cases and deaths could be impacted by reporting delays.

Coronavirus cases and deaths in LA County have slowly been decreasing as vaccine efforts ramp up in the county and in the state of California as a whole. As of April 30, the county has administered more than 8 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine – 4,988,031 were first doses and 3,045,115 were second doses, according to a press release.

“With ample supply, our efforts are now focused on making it as easy as possible for everyone 16 and older to get their vaccine,” the release read.

Residents ages 16 and older became eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine in mid-April. In late March, Pfizer requested authorization from the Food and Drug Administration for use in adolescents ages 12-15 after clinical trial data suggested their vaccine was highly effective in a trial of more than 2,000 adolescents. Data also suggested the vaccine was “well tolerated” among those ages 12 to 15.

The FDA is set to authorize the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for those ages 12-15 by next week, The New York Times reported, though the agency has yet to confirm its authorization plan.

Ahead of the FDA authorization, LA County public health officials are “urging providers to consider expanding the range of vaccines they are delivering to include Pfizer,” according to the LA County press release.

“Our ability to maintain low numbers of cases, and correspondingly low numbers of hospitalizations and deaths, can be attributed in large part to the increased number of people vaccinated,” Barbara Ferrer, LA County public health director, said in a statement. “There will be a time in the not-distant future when many of our children will be eligible for the vaccine.”

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Billionaire Eli Broad, who reshaped Los Angeles’ landscape, dead at 87

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In this Sept. 16, 2015 file photo Eli Broad poses for a photo at his museum, “The Broad” in downtown Los Angeles.

  • Businessman and philanthropist Eli Broad died Friday at the age of 87 after a lengthy illness.
  • The self-made billionaire helped shape the city of Los Angeles, building museums and funding cultural institutions.
  • Broad built two Fortune 500 companies during his lifetime, and Forbes estimated his fortune at $6.9 billion.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Eli Broad, a philanthropist and self-made billionaire who used his fortune to reshape the culture of the city of Los Angeles, died Friday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles at the age of 87.

Broad built two Fortune 500 companies during his lifetime and played a role in funding and shaping institutions like the Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art. The businessman went on to build his own museum in the heart of LA, a city he loved and helped transform into a cultural capital.

A spokeswoman for the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation told The New York Times his death came after a lengthy illness.

The New York native chose California as his home and found massive success in the home construction and insurance industries. Forbes estimated his fortune at $6.9 billion.

Broad bought his first real estate at 20, before co-founding Kaufman & Broad in 1957 with a $12,500 loan from his in-laws, according to Forbes. The home builder became one of the biggest in the nation to provide affordable housing. Broad also found success when he bought Sun Life Insurance, then later sold it for $18 billion in stock in 1998.

In the 1970s, Broad was named fouding chairman of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, and in 2008, he saved the institution from collapse with a $30-million grant.

He worked with developers to transform Los Angeles’ Grand Avenue into a cultural hub, alive with hotels, restaurants, a park, and his own museum.

Broad and his wife, Edythe, were avid art collectors and enthusiasts. They opened the Broad Museum in LA in 2015, which offers free admission to fellow art appreciators to view works from the couple’s collection of more than 2,000 works.

Through two foundations, the couple supported medical research, public education, and the visual and performing arts. Their foundations have pledged and given away over $4 billion in grants, Forbes reported.

“There’s no curtain you can’t get through in Los Angeles – no religious curtain, no curtain about where you came from,” Mr. Broad told The Times in 2001. “It’s a meritocracy, unlike some other cities. If you have ideas here, if you have energy, you’ll be accepted. I love LA.”

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

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Los Angeles could offer thousands of poor residents $1,000 a month, ‘no questions asked’

california homelessness los angeles
Echo Park Lake Thursday, March 25, 2021 in los Angeles, CA.

  • Poor residents in Los Angeles could receive $1,000 direct monthly payments as part of the city’s budget.
  • LA Mayor Eric Garcetti outlined the $24 million proposal during his annual “State of the City” address.
  • The payments will “begin to tear away at poverty in our city,” Garcetti said.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Over one in five residents of Los Angeles live in poverty, making it one of the poorest big cities in the nation – a fact most visible in the tens of thousands of people who sleep on its streets every evening. But some could soon receive a cash infusion from their government.

“$1,000 a month to 2,000 households for an entire year,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said Tuesday, “no questions asked.”

In his annual “state of the city” address, Garcetti outlined a $24 million proposal to lift up the city’s poor residents without the bureaucracy of traditional welfare programs, which tie assistance to specific goods, such as food or housing. The aid, according to LAist, will be directed to families that live at or near the federal poverty line.

The “direct help,” Garcetti said, will “begin to tear away at poverty in our city and show this nation a way to fulfill Dr. King’s call for a basic income once and for all.”

In the 1970s, Dr. Martin Luther King advocated for a guaranteed income equivalent equal to the median wage, which would be over $30,000 today. Garcetti’s proposal will only make a dent in a region where hundreds of thousands of people live in poverty.

But, the Los Angeles Times reported, any city-wide effort will be supplemented by district-level initiatives, including one in South Los Angeles to provide $1,000 annual cash assistance to single parents.

Last year, Garcetti also announced that thousands of out-of-work food service employees would receive a one-time payment of $800, using private funds raised by his nonprofit organization.

Humanity Forward, the nonprofit of former presidential candidate Andrew Yang who was a major proponent of universal basic income and ran his campaign on the platform, partnered with the $1K Project last August to bring $1,000 direct monthly payments to struggling American families amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“If Congress had its s— together, we’d all be getting direct, recurring payments throughout this pandemic, and something like what we’re doing with $1K Project would be less vital,” Yang, who is now running for mayor of New York, told Insider in August. “In the absence of congressional action, then what we’re doing seems even more immediate and vital.”

Have a news tip? Email these reporters: cdavis@insider.com and lfrias@insider.com

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The US is facing a supply-chain crisis as 21 cargo ships float off the coast of LA waiting to dock

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  • 21 ships were anchored off the coast of Los Angeles and Long Beach waiting to dock on Wednesday.
  • The California ports are congested and account for about one-third of US imports.
  • The delays are just the latest in a host of supply-chain issues.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A supply-chain crisis is quietly brewing off the coast of Southern California as massive freighters wait for dock space to open up.

California ports in Los Angeles and Long Beach account for about one-third of US imports. These ports operate as a primary source of imports from China and have been heavily congested for months.

On Wednesday, 21 ships were anchored off the coast waiting for a spot to open up to unload at Los Angeles and Long Beach ports, according to data from the Marine Exchange of Southern California.

Anchorages PM 1 Jan 2021

The Southern California ports are facing more congestion than ever, Kip Louttit, executive director of the Marine Exchange of Southern California, told Insider.

“The normal number of container ships at anchor is between zero and one,” Louttit said.

Some of the container ships have been waiting off the shore for weeks. One of the vessels has been at berth since April 3. Of the ships waiting to dock, half of them are what Marine Exchange calls “mega-container ships” or ships with the carrying capacity of 10,000 TEUs.

“Part of the problem is the ships are double or triple the size of the ships we were seeing 10 or 15 years ago,” Louttit told Insider. “They take longer to unload. You need more trucks, more trains, more warehouses to put the cargo.”

The ships carry millions of dollars worth of popular imports, including furniture, auto parts, clothes, electronics, and plastics, according to data from the Port of Los Angeles. Supplies of these materials could be heavily depleted in the US due to the backlog of ships.

Read more: The Suez Canal won’t be the last supply-chain fail. Here are 4 things your small business can do to benefit from the next one.

Louttit said increases in consumer spending and, as a result, a spike in imports, have overwhelmed the ports.

“The ports are setting records moving cargo,” Louttit said.

California port backlogs are already helping drive shortages and delivery delays in the US

California’s port delays seemed to have peaked in early February but have persisted in recent months.

On January 30, Southern California port congestion hit a record high when 38 container ships were waiting along the coast for room to open up to dock and unload.

Gene Seroka, a Port of Los Angeles executive, warned the Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners in February that high import levels caused by increased spending during the pandemic were driving port congestion.

A video from the US Coast Guard shows dozens of ships anchored off the coast.

California port delays are just one of many factors piling onto a global supply-chain crisis

The boats waiting outside of the port, which can carry tens of thousands of shipping containers, are adding to a global container shortage, and, as a result, shipping delays.

Customers are already seeing the impact of shipping delays. During a third-quarter earnings call in February, La-Z-Boy executives said customers should expect delivery dates that are five to nine months out from the purchase date.

February’s Texas freeze and a shortage of computer chips have already pushed companies to increase prices and delay production. Several companies including Nike, Honda, and Samsung have already said they have been hampered by supply-chain issues.

As a result of California port delays and the global container shortage, customers will likely face rising prices and limited options as commodities become increasingly difficult to obtain and produce and companies are forced to compete for containers and delivery dates.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The iconic mansion from ‘The Godfather’ is back on the market at a $105 million discount. Look inside the Beverly Hills estate.

godfather mansion hearst estate
  • The iconic mansion seen in 1972 classic film “The Godfather” is back on the market for $89.75 million.
  • That’s a roughly $105 million discount from its $195 million asking price in 2016.
  • In the movie, the mansion was the home of movie producer Jack Woltz, who woke up with a severed horse head in his bed after crossing the Corleone family.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.
The historic Los Angeles mansion where the classic 1972 film “The Godfather” filmed scenes is back on the market for $89.75 million – a $105 million discount from its original asking price – after the owner declared bankruptcy on the property.

godfather mansion

The estate’s owner, attorney and real-estate investor Leonard Ross, put the property on the market in 2016 for $195 million. Over the past several years, it’s seen price cut after price cut, down to $135 million in 2018 and $125 million in 2020

Now, the Mediterranean-inspired estate is listed at a 54% discount from its original asking price.

The new price comes after Ross was recently ordered to sell the property by a bankruptcy court following a petition from Fortress Investment Group, which said it’s owed more than $52 million in unpaid loans and interest, according to the Wall Street Journal. Ross had placed the LLC that owns the estate into chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2019.

Ross and his attorney did not immediately respond to Insider’s requests for comment for this story.

The nearly 30,000-square-foot mansion, built in 1927, sits on 3.5 acres of prime Los Angeles real estate in Beverly Hills.

godfather mansion

Once owned by media titan William Randolph Hearst, the property was formerly known as “the Beverly House” but is now being rebranded as “the Hearst Estate,” according to a spokesperson for colisting agent Marguleas of Amalfi Estates.

In 2013, the property was available for rent for $600,000 a month, per The New York Daily News.

With its latest foray onto the market, the estate is now colisted by three brokers: Anthony Marguleas of Amalfi Estates, Gary Gold of Hilton & Hyland, and Zizi Pak of Rodeo Realty.

The Hearst Estate was used in several scenes from “The Godfather,” where it portrayed the home of the character Jack Woltz, a movie producer who makes the mistake of crossing the Corleone family.

the godfather woltz mansion

Source: IMDb

It’s been widely reported that the mansion was the setting for one of the film’s most iconic scenes in which Woltz wakes up to a bloody, severed horse head in his bed.

the godfather horse head

But Marguleas’ spokesperson told Insider that scene was in fact filmed inside an estate on Long Island in New York.

Paramount Pictures, which produced the movie, did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for confirmation on the filming location of the scene.

The mansion was also seen in Beyonce’s 2020 visual album “Black Is King.”

beyonce black is king

The Hearst Estate is first shown when Jay-Z rolls up in a vintage Rolls Royce, and the film features multiple additional shots of the interior and exterior of the property.

Visitors to the estate will have to go through a wrought-iron gate and up the 800-foot driveway.

godfather mansion

Source: Amalfi Estates

The home was designed by Gordon Kaufmann, an architect who designed many other lavish mansions in the Beverly Hills area.

godfather mansion

Several additions were made to the home in the 1990s, expanding it significantly, according to a former listing.

Source: Amalfi Estates

The home, which has two swimming pools, once belonged to publishing mogul William Randolph Hearst.

godfather mansion

In addition to the pools, the home also has a private tennis court.

Source: Amalfi Estates

It’s surrounded by pristine, manicured gardens and hedges. Landscape architect Paul Thiene designed the gardens.

godfather mansion

Source: The Beverly House

Before it was listed for $195 million in 2016, the property was up for rent for $600,000 a month in 2013.

godfather mansion

Source: New York Daily News

The interior of the mansion is just as impressive as the exterior. Like the outside, it’s mostly decorated in warm, natural tones.

godfather mansion beverly hills

Source: Amalfi Estates

It includes a two-story library with hand-carved paneling and a detailed ceiling.

godfather mansion beverly hills

Source: Amalfi Estates

The furnishings are opulent, with gold tones and touches throughout many of the rooms.

godfather mansion

Source: Amalfi Estates

The living room, with its 22-foot-high arched ceiling, was sometimes used as a ballroom.

godfather mansion beverly hills

Source: Amalfi Estates

The mansion was well known even before its appearance in “The Godfather” – Jacqueline and John F. Kennedy spent part of their honeymoon there in 1953.

godfather mansion

SourceNew York Daily News

A stroll through the house would take you through its grand hallways, one of which is 82 feet long and the other more than 102 feet with a 40-foot wide mural.

godfather mansion los angeles

Source: Amalfi Estates

The 32-foot billiards room is open to the main hallway.

godfather mansion

Source: Amalfi Estates

The pool area was also used in scenes from “The Godfather.”

godfather mansion

Source: IMDb

In the film, it doesn’t look too different from today.

the godfather woltz mansion

Source: IMDb

If the 19 bedrooms in the main house aren’t enough, there’s also a separate five-bedroom house on the property near the entry gate.

godfather mansion guest house

Source: Amalfi Estates

The terrace can reportedly seat up to 400 guests.

godfather mansion

Source: Amalfi Estates

The Hearst Estate is not the only sprawling Los Angeles estate that’s gotten a massive price chop recently.

godfather mansion california

Another Beverly Hills estate, known as Villa Firenze, once listed for $165 million, just sold at auction for roughly $60 million.

And in December, a contemporary Bel Air home that was once asking $180 million dropped its price to $99 million. 

Read the original article on Business Insider

The US has its own supply-chain crisis brewing as dozens of cargo ships remain stuck off the coast of LA as they wait to dock

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  • 28 ships were anchored off the coast of Los Angeles and Long Beach waiting to dock on Thursday.
  • The California ports are congested and account for about one third of US imports.
  • The port delays pile on a host of supply-chain issues.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

While the Suez Canal jam may have captured public attention before the cargo ship Ever Given was freed, the US is quietly facing its own supply-chain crisis as dozens of freighters float off the coast of Los Angeles, waiting for dock space to open up.

California ports in Los Angeles and Long Beach account for about one third of US imports. These ports operate as a primary source of imports from China and have been heavily congested for months.

On Thursday, 28 ships were anchored off the coast waiting for a spot to open up to unload at Los Angeles and Long Beach ports, according to data from the Marine Exchange of Southern California.

The Southern California ports are facing more congestion than ever before, Kip Louttit, executive director of the Marine Exchange of Southern California, told The Wall Street Journal.

“Under normal conditions, container ships rarely anchor,” Louttit said.

The ships carry millions of dollars worth of popular imports, including furniture, auto parts, clothes, electronics, and plastics, according to data from the Port of Los Angeles. Supplies of these materials could be heavily depleted in the US due to the backlog of ships.

Read more: The Suez Canal won’t be the last supply chain fail. Here are 4 things your small business can do to benefit from the next one.

Louttit said increases in consumer spending and, as a result, a spike in imports have overwhelmed the ports.

“The ports are setting records moving cargo,” Louttit told The Journal.

California port delays are already helping drive shortages and delivery delays in the US

California port delays seemed to have peaked in early February, but have persisted in recent months.

On January 30, Southern California port congestion hit a record high when 38 container ships were waiting along the coast for room to open up to dock and unload.

Gene Seroka, a Port of Los Angeles Executive, warned the Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners in February that high import levels caused by increased spending during the pandemic were driving port congestion.

A video from the US Coast Guard shows dozens of ships anchored off the coast.

California port delays are just one of many factors piling onto a global supply-chain crisis

The boats waiting outside of the port, which can carry tens of thousands of shipping containers, are adding to the global container shortage, and, as a result, shipping delays.

Customers are already seeing the impact of shipping delays. During a third-quarter earnings call in February, La-Z-Boy executives said customers should expect delivery dates that are five to nine months out from the purchase date.

The Texas freeze, as well as a shortage of computer chips, have already pushed companies to increase prices and delay production. Several companies including Nike, Honda, and Samsung have already said they have been hampered by supply-chain issues.

As a result of California port delays and the global container shortage, customers will likely face rising prices and limited options as commodities become increasingly difficult to obtain and produce, and companies are forced to compete for containers and delivery dates.

Read the original article on Business Insider

California healthcare workers didn’t know they were fighting a new variant this winter. Their trauma should be a warning.

coronavirus covid hospital chaplain patient intubated
Chaplain Kevin Deegan places his hand on the head of a COVID-19 patient while praying for him at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Los Angeles on January 9, 2021.

  • Southern California’s winter surge of COVID-19 infections overwhelmed hospitals.
  • A new variant of the virus became dominant there, which may have partially spurred the surge.
  • Four healthcare workers in San Diego and Los Angeles share their stories from the winter.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Shawna Blackmun-Myers grasped her patient’s hand, called the woman’s family, and held up the phone. As everyone said their goodbyes on the other end, the patient couldn’t respond: A tube down her throat was feeding oxygen from a ventilator into her lungs.

Blackmun-Myers, an ICU nurse at the Jacobs Medical Center in San Diego, told Insider that the woman was in her 50s and had been bubbly when she came in weeks earlier. Normally in the ICU, Blackmun-Myers said, “people are so sick that that energy and that light is dimmed, but even her being in that situation, she was still just such a bright light.”

“We were dancing and listening to music, and we were watching some soap opera drama stuff on TV and, you know, talking tea about everybody,” she added.

But the woman’s condition worsened quickly. Hospital staff readied a ventilator.

“She’s crying and telling me, you know, ‘I just don’t want to be alone. And I just know that once this tube goes in, I don’t think it’s coming out. I think this is going to be it,'” Blackmun-Myers said.

“I did my best to let her know, you know, obviously she’s not alone. I was there with her. I had her back,” she added.

Then the virus brought heart and kidney problems. The woman went on dialysis. Eventually, there was nothing more the hospital could do to restore her quality of life, and her family knew she wouldn’t want to live this way.

In January, Blackmun-Myers oversaw the woman’s death as hospital staff disconnected the ventilator. The sound of crying family members echoed through the phone.

coronavirus covid patient death hospital chaplain healthcare worker
Chaplain Kristin Michealsen holds the hand of a deceased COVID-19 patient while talking on the phone with the patient’s family member at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Los Angeles on January 9, 2021.

It was the middle of winter in Southern California. Coronavirus cases were at an all-time high, and ICUs were above 90% capacity. Blackmun-Myers’s unit was losing multiple patients every day.

“I ugly-cry, and then I get angry, and I accept the fact that I did everything I could,” she said. “And just move on so I can take care of the next person and their family.”

Blackmun-Myers didn’t know it at the time, but a new coronavirus variant had been overtaking the region.

The CAL.20C variant was first identified in Los Angeles in July, then disappeared from the record until October. But by January, it accounted for 44% of Southern California coronavirus samples in one study, and more than half of California samples in another.

Several other factors contributed to Southern California’s winter surge – holiday travel, crowded housing, pandemic fatigue – but many researchers think the variant played a role.

Two studies that aren’t yet peer-reviewed suggest that the variant is more infectious than the original virus strain. The research also found it to be associated with a higher incidence of severe illness and partially resistant to antibodies developed in response to the original virus or vaccines.

Although California cases have dropped from a peak of about 40,700 per day in late December to about 4,000 now, experts warn that CAL.20C or other variants could still change the course of the pandemic.

“Now is not the time to relax the critical safeguards that we know can stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities,” Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the CDC director, said at a White House briefing last week.

“Please hear me clearly,” she added. “At this level of cases, with variants spreading, we stand to completely lose the hard-earned ground we have gained.”

Blackmun-Myers and three other Southern California healthcare workers say what they saw this winter should serve as a strong warning.

Struggling to be heard

Kristine Chieh nurse hospital face
Kristine Chieh during a COVID-19 shift, with marks on her face from wearing protective gear.

The ICU was loud. Given the influx of coronavirus patients, the Sharp hospital network in San Diego had to jerry-rig negative-pressure systems to prevent virus particles from wafting out of patients’ rooms. The makeshift tubing roared overhead, so nurse Kristine Chieh had to yell over it – and through several layers of PPE – for patients to hear her.

Chieh isn’t normally an ICU nurse, but in January, the COVID floors needed all the help they could get. Two days before her first ICU shift, Chieh’s friend, a man in his late 40s, died from COVID-19 after more than two weeks in the hospital.

“I walked through the ICU, looking at the windows, and I swear I see my friend over and over and over again in those beds,” she said.

Chieh recalled stopping to help a man video chat with his family. A mask covered his face, pumping oxygen from a BiPap machine. Chieh lifted the mask for short intervals so he could speak to his family. After a few seconds, he would run out of breath, and Chieh would put the mask back down. Family members would speak up to fill the silence.

“There’s all kinds of people on that iPad, like he must have a large family,” Chieh said. “They thought it was so awesome to be able to hear his voice, and I think he was really excited to use his voice.”

bipap machine covid patient coronavirus hospital healthcare breathing mask oxygen
A healthcare worker places a BiPAP machine on a COVID-19 patient at United Memorial Medical Center in Houston, Texas, December 28, 2020.

She spent about half an hour like that, lifting and lowering the mask.

“The other ICU nurse was in the process of intubating somebody at the same time that this is happening, so there’s no way she would have been able to do that for him,” Chieh said. “I clocked out for the day and I don’t know what ever happened to him, long term. Hopefully he made it out okay.”

‘It almost overtook my vocabulary and my mind’

Chieh works as a float nurse across three locations in the Sharp hospital network, going wherever she’s needed. Typically, she works in progressive care units – the level before intensive care. But during the winter, even the COVID-19 patients there were severely ill. Chieh would dash from room to room, changing in and out of protective gear to help patients who suddenly found themselves struggling to breathe.

“Throughout my shift, I’ll get patients who are off and on just being like, ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe.’ And then I go in and I do breathing exercises with them. I adjust their oxygen. I have the respiratory therapist come in, do breathing treatments, whatever is needed,” Chieh said.

They would calm down and be fine for about an hour, she said, before it happened again.

kristine chieh covid ppe hospital
Kristine Chieh, in full PPE, stands in front of a negative-pressure room for COVID-19 patients.

Robert Bang, a floor nurse in Los Angeles, spent his winter days the same way. Alarms were constantly sounding through the computer system, he said, to alert him that a patient’s oxygen levels had dropped too low. He would rush to the patient’s room, sometimes to find that they didn’t even realize they were losing oxygen.

“If you’ve been short of breath for so long, you just start developing fatigue from breathing so hard. So it might be like your new normal,” Bang told Insider.

Even when he went home, Bang said, he would still hear the alarms in his head. Work followed Chieh home, too.

“My husband gave me this feedback: I talked about COVID too much at home. Talked about math too much, talked about every news article,” she said. “It almost overtook my vocabulary and my mind.”

That hasn’t fully subsided – Chieh said those winter days still haunt her.

“I feel like I can remember every single COVID patient,” she said. “I imagine what it must be like to have this astronaut person come into their room to work with them. They must be terrified.”

‘I’ve never seen something infect people so easily’

nurses covid coronavirus ppe donning hospital
Dania Lima, right, helps fellow nurse Adriana Volynsky put on personal protective equipment in a COVID-19 unit at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Los Angeles, December 22, 2020.

Many of Dr. Kenny Pettersen’s patients in Los Angeles live in crowded homes with a combination of parents, kids, grandparents, or cousins under one roof. That made it difficult to make quarantine plans for the COVID-19 patients who weren’t sick enough to stay at the hospital.

In spring and summer, he told Insider, “when someone in the household would have COVID, usually like half or less of the rest of the household would get COVID.”

But this winter, Pettersen, said “it was almost universally 100%.”

Pettersen is a primary-care physician at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center. The change in LA’s outbreak was so noticeable to him during the winter that he assumed the virus itself must have changed.

“I’ve never seen something infect people so easily,” he said. “I felt like I was almost wasting my time talking to patients about the prevention of household transmission.”

More research on CAL.20C is still needed to confirm his suspicions, though, since the initial studies of the variant haven’t been peer reviewed, and the spike-protein mutation that characterizes it has not been thoroughly investigated.

Relief and grief after the surge

Pettersen’s grandmother died of coronavirus in August. Many of his patients died, too, and some left behind young children. One family is losing their home after the coronavirus-related deaths of two family members.

“Practically every one of my patients, either they’ve been infected, or many of their family members have been infected, they know somebody very well who has died or gotten severely sick,” Pettersen said. “I think the cumulative toll that takes on my patients is just really profound.”

vaccine nurse coronavirus covid los angeles california
Nurse practitioner Nicole Monk, 44, receives a coronavirus vaccination at the Los Angeles Mission homeless shelter on Skid Row, February 10, 2021.

Still, he said, the mood among his coworkers is more upbeat now. There are even days at the hospital when nobody dies of COVID-19.

“I think that we can start to breathe with a little bit more confidence,” Pettersen said. He and his wife have both been vaccinated.

Bang and Chieh say they feel safer these days, too. The volume of COVID-19 patients is much lower. They’ve been vaccinated, and more people are getting shots each day. But the winter memories persist. Some healthcare workers are now nervous about other variants. And there’s a strong possibility they or their colleagues will develop PTSD.

But Pettersen, at least, said he was finally able to go to an outdoor restaurant for sushi with his wife recently.

“We can, you know, be optimistic for the first time in about a year,” he said.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Spirit is launching summer flights between LaGuardia Airport and Los Angeles, but a decades-old rule is limiting them to 1 day per week

Spirit Airlines Airbus A320neo flight
A Spirit Airlines Airbus A320neo.

  • LaGuardia Airport is getting new flights to Los Angeles; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Flights to Los Angeles and San Juan will only run on Saturdays thanks to a decades-old rule.
  • Any flight longer than 1,500 nautical miles from LaGuardia Airport can only fly on Saturdays, with one exception.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Transcontinental flying between New York and Los Angeles is going low-cost.

Spirit Airlines plans to launch flights between New York’s LaGuardia Airport and Los Angeles International Airport this summer from June 12 to September 4. Flight NK2151 departs New York at 7:20 a.m. and arrives in Los Angeles at 10:30 a.m. with the return flight, NK2152, departing at 1:30 p.m. and arriving back in New York at 10:05 p.m.

The timing makes it possible to jet off from LaGuardia, have a quick meeting in Los Angeles (or a bite to eat and plane spotting at the In-and-Out Burger next to Los Angeles International), and make it back to New York in the same day.

The catch, however, is that flights will only operate on Saturdays.

A 1984 rule from the airport’s operator, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, limits how far flights from LaGuardia can be at 1,500 nautical miles. Denver is the only exception and flights can be flown to the Colorado capital any day of the week.

Countless airlines have tried to make Saturday-only flights to far-off destinations work with varying degrees of success. United Airlines once flew non-stop between LaGuardia and Montrose, Colorado and Southwest offered flights to Phoenix. Both routes have not returned to the airport.

American Airlines, however, currently flies to Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, and Aruba in the Caribbean on a Saturday-only basis.

The Airbus A320neo, Spirit’s flagship aircraft, will serve the new transcontinental route and feature the airline’s latest seat products, as Insider found on a recent trip from Newark to Boston.

Read more: Spirit Airlines’ low-cost model puts it in the perfect spot to be the big winner of the pandemic, a Deutsche Bank analyst says

Spirit will also fly from New York to San Juan, Puerto Rico on a Saturday-only basis starting on April 17, as well as daily to Nashville, Tennessee starting May 5. The ultra-low-cost carrier will be the only airline offering flights to San Juan and Los Angeles from LaGuardia, as of now.

LaGuardia will also see a terminal shakeup with Spirit flights for Fort Lauderdale moving to Terminal A, also known as the Marine Air Terminal, on April 28. Currently home to JetBlue Airways, LaGuardia’s smallest terminal is a holdover from the early days of New York City aviation and boasts short walking distances from the curb to any gate.

Flights to Los Angeles, San Juan, and Nashville, as well as Spirit’s existing destinations besides Fort Lauderdale, will still use Terminal C, home to Delta Air Lines.

None of Spirit’s flights will use the nearly-completed Terminal B which now features an entirely new Arrivals and Departures Hall and two new concourses.

Read the original article on Business Insider