L.A. Derby Dolls Season In Jeopardy Due To Safety Concerns After Oakland Fire
The future of Los Angeles' "premier all-female, banked track roller derby league" is in jeopardy. In the wake of the December blaze that killed 36 people in Oakland, the L.A. Derby Dolls say they are unable to obtain the necessary permits to continue operating out of their space in El Sereno."Over the last year and a half the Derby Dolls have been working with the City of Los Angeles in order to get a change of use/variance permit filed and approved for our facility, The Dollosseum," reads a GoFundMe campaign started by the roller derby league. "In the wake of the 'Ghost Ship' tragedy, the L.A. Derby Dolls are no longer able to obtain temporary special event permits from the Los Angeles Fire Department and the Los Angeles City Department of Building and Safety."
The Dolls moved into the Dollosseum in El Sereno in May of last year, after their home in Historic Filipinotown was demolished to make way for development. The move was made possible by a successful Indiegogo campaign that raised over $100,000. This time, they have started a GoFundMe to raise over $119,000 to cover the cost of a zone variance permit, construction and improvements to bring the Dollosseum into compliance, and general operating costs.
Due to the burden of these costs, the Derby Dolls already canceled their first match of the year, originally scheduled for January 7. They add that "all of our public events scheduled for 2017 hang in the balance."
Founded in 2003, the Derby Dolls are a volunteer-run roller derby league with 150 members.
LAist has reached out to the Los Angeles Fire Department, Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety, and the Derby Dolls about the permits and will update when we hear back.