Sherman Oaks News
Chabad Project Reapproved
By Ivetta Babadjanian
Jun 28, 2012 - 12:27:33 PM
Abend and his congregation rejoiced on Wednesday, June 27, as the City
Council re-approved the Chabad project to be constructed in Sherman Oaks
on Chandler Boulevard.
City Councilman Paul Koretz
The city council voted 10-0 in favor of the continuation for the
12,000-square-foot synagogue. Wednesday's meeting was much like the
meeting held the day before regarding the construction of the synagogue.
city's Planning and Land Use Management Committee (PLUM) voted in favor
of the expansion of a synagogue in Sherman Oaks on Tuesday.
The new building will accommodate
up to 200 worshipers and is about eight times the size of the former
building. The building will include a Hebrew school, synagogue, lecture
area and playground.
Residents were allowed to attend and speak up one-by-one in order to
share their viewpoint of the building's construction before the
councilmen placed their votes. Residents living near the Chandler Boulevard property spoke up about their opinions regarding the
synagogue. Julia Granovitz explained that the larger building is
necessary as the population of their worshipers grow. She said that her
daughter refused to go to Sabbath because she had to stand in the back. "Families should be able to sit together to pray,'' Granovitz told committee members.
"Given that the project has largely been constructed... and has community support, this seems to be the correct way to
proceed," said City Councilman Paul Koretz, who currently represents the
Some residents found the building to be too
large for the residential area and feared the traffic it will bring into
their neighborhood. Rudy Nunez, who opposes the expansion, stated that she has no problem
with the growing presence of Orthodox in her community but she does have
a problem with the size of the temple. "I welcome them to my
neighborhood,'' said Nunez, who has lived on
Chandler Boulevard for 37 years. "But I oppose the size."
Those who opposed the plan appealed the council's
first approval of the project, which was granted. Thus, the council had
to reevaluate its decision and go through the process again of voting
whether or not the synagogue should be allowed to expand its former
Some have accused the decision of being influenced by backroom deals,
first with City Councilman Jack Weiss in 2007 when the building was
first approved, and again with the council's approval under the
influence of Koretz.
Koretz, who is running for re-election in Council District 5, has
denied these allegations and points out that he is going against Reznik
in the Bel Air development dispute.
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