Burbank Blvd was always light industrial. God bless it for that


Remember the radiator shop on Burbank Blvd near Dino’s that always had molten lead bubbling away in a little portable fire pit at its entrance? All day long that thing would just sit there 15 feet from the street happily smoking away, and the best thing about it was that no one ever complained or asked why it was there.

Tonight the council will be debating on whether or not they should allow a custom auto guy in that same general area to have an individual spray booth at his facility. Apparently some of the neighbors are up in arms because they forgot that they’re not living in San Marino.

Of course, we think the council should allow it. Everyone knows that Burbank was built on the backs of these great and useful cottage and service industries. This town was always where people from all over would go to get things done.

We’ve been losing way too many of these small businesses lately, and so let’s do what we can to keep what’s left of them around. They’re great to see and great to have.



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15 responses to “Burbank Blvd was always light industrial. God bless it for that

    • semichorus

      You should see the stuff we were forced to ingest around here in the 60s. These newcomers are wimps. We lived on asbestos and jet fuel.

      A spray booth’s not going to cause any problems.

  1. gridling

    It’s sick alright

  2. chad

    Semi, c’mon man, I grew up with lead paint, asbestos, and coal in our basement. I don’t think that’s necessarily a good thing.

    • semichorus

      One spray booth is no problem. In fact, these neighbors’ concerns are baseless. And those repair/restoration businesses were there first.

      Would people rather have big mixed use in these zones? Because that’s what they’re going to get if they keep harassing these businesses.

  3. Disagree, it’s way too close to homes and those schools. The business owners were already violating a number of regulations and were cited by the SCAQMD for one violation already. Since the city is completely lax in every type of enforcement these days from codes to parking tickets we cannot trust the business owners to do the right thing without oversight.

    • semichorus

      It’s just one spray booth, and what they got cited for was not having a proper spray booth.

      These small businesses are a vital part of Burbank. I have no sympathy either for people who knowingly move right next door to C and M zones, and then complain that there are C and M zones nearby.

      They want mixed use instead? I also detect more than a bit of phony elitism here. It reminds me of when Golonski and Stacy Murphy were going after car repair joints in the Flatland. They’re so dirty and ugly!

      • Large mixed-use is coming to the corridor eventually. The C3 in this case was not zoned for painting. The CUP had 42 conditions the business owner had to comply with in order to be able to use the booth. 42!!! And many of those as I mentioned, were not going to enforced. So no actually this is not zoned as an acceptable use in the neighborhood without the CUP. Industrial zones should not be next to schools anyway. Hopefully that will slowly start to change.

      • Al in SoCal

        Light industrial isn’t my favorite land-use – but it’s necessary for a town of about 125K like Burbank – for jobs and services.

        I also think you are absolutely right – that mixed use will be the “Plan B” – and all these people here will want to complain about that.

        • semichorus

          I agree– it’s either encourage small cottage industries and businesses, or make way for big mixed use.

          One spray booth isn’t going to hurt anything. There’s so much less going on now on Burbank Blvd when it comes to light industrial.

          • I agree that it’s a serious quandary we have to confront as a city. I’d be okay with mixed use with plenty of parking near neighborhoods but that’s always the issue isn’t it? I do want to say I think this one location was an outlier. It was just too close to Edison and Montessori as opposed to other body shops in town that are close to homes but not kids.

            • Al in SoCal

              Personally I like mixed use and while I think the Chandler bike path is a win for the city – It would be great it if a metro “line” would make its way into Burbank – Orange, Red, Purple – what-have-you.

  4. chad

    Absolutely. Small businesses, yes. I’m just concerned that this might be genuinely toxic.

    • semichorus

      It’s not. It’s just one spray booth. And that’s what spray booths are for– to keep it in.

      In the old days there was no such thing as spray booths. And there used to be so much such work going on in Burbank. These are dying trades around here.

      At one time Burbank had five different Jaguar repair agencies. And a Jaguar and Porsche dealer. Sad the loss. I miss that Burbank.

      This is all about snobbish hostility to blue collar trades and artisans. The alternative is big mixed use. People in Burbank need to take their pick.

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