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Sherman Oaks Could Grow, Leaving Van Nuys Smaller

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A home displays a campaign sign for the annexation | Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist

A home displays a campaign sign for the annexation | Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist
A motion that is likely to pass in the City Council will take a chunk of Van Nuys and plop it within Sherman Oaks' boundaries. This will be the second time that Van Nuys has lost parts of its neighborhood--Valley Glen and Lake Balboa are also post-Van Nuys 'hoods.

Despite both the Van Nuys and Sherman Oaks neighborhood councils opposing such a move, outgoing Councilmember and Conroller-Elect Wendy Greuel showed her support in an open letter. "I have considered all possible courses of action and possible alternatives. Neither the city's previous decisions on similar cases nor city policy on community naming provides any grounds for denying this request." Greuel said she received overwhelming support for the move.

It's really not the end of the world if the neighborhood name change happens, but it does open up dialogue for future cases like this.

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Not only does the city have sketchy records on community names and maps, the process allows the will of the people to dictate their neighborhood name. Should the Sherman Oaks residents of Mulholland Drive become part of Bel Air because they share the same zip code and have the will to be part of Bel Air? Should parts of Studio City that share the famous 90210 zip code be annexed into the City of Beverly Hills just because the media and residents historically refsue to properly identify it as Studio City? The list could go on and on.

Disclosure: Editor Zach Behrens is a member of the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council. He voted against the annexation because there was a lack of compelling evidence for the needed shift.