Friday, December 14, 2018

VSA Joins with Venice Historical Society to Return Gondola to Windward Circle

After a long absence, the Venice Gondola is now back in Venice.

Some time ago the Venice Historical Society had to pull the gondola off the Windward Circle due to the extensive damage it was suffering from vandalism.

It had been sitting in storage near LAX until the beautification of the Venice Post Office environment by the VSA and Neighbors of Grand suggested a new home for the gondola.

As part of beautification project, the VSA raised the funds to remove the over-grown foliage from the small garden at the west end of the Post Office parking lot and then welded steel plates atop the old I-beams that once held up a huge Safeway sign at that location.  The steel plates provide a secure pedestal for the gondola.

Then the VSA and Historical Society retained a fencing firm to install a wider gate from the parking lot to the garden to accommodate the gondola (seen below on the right).

Stewart Oscars, who is restoring the gondola, Historical Society president Jill Prestup and VSA president Mark Ryavec. 

Critical to the project was the support of Post Mistress Brittani Cephas and the financial assistance of Hama Sushi owner Esther Chiang and resident Grant van Every.

Today carpenter (and former VNC Board Member) Stewart Oscars finished the repairs and painting of the bottom and it was moved into an upright position.  Next, Oscars will replicate and install several deck fixtures that were lost over the years and re-paint the remainder of the hull.  Current plans are to re-paint the gondola in traditional black with gold trim.  Other plans include landscaping and possibly Italianate fencing.

Many thanks to all those who have supported this project.