Notice of violation issued for mobile home park demo, SCAQMD investigation continues

A mobile home slated for demolition sits behind a metal fence amid termoil surrounding the circumstances of the Soledad Trailer Lodge's closure. Austin Dave/The Signal
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Legal counsel with the South Coast Air Quality Management District is looking to determine whether a Santa Clarita Valley-based construction company that started demolition at Soledad Trailer Lodge may face civil or criminal penalties, officials said.

On March 25, the district issued a notice of violation to Rick Franklin Construction Inc., located on Placerita Canyon Road, for infractions of at least four codes. Knock-down of the mobile home park has halted as a result.

An employee with the company said Thursday the company was hired to conduct the demolition, and could no longer finish the job, but could not confirm why.

The notice reads that the construction company failed “to perform an asbestos survey prior to demolition”; failed “to thoroughly inspect facility for the presence of asbestos prior to the commencement of demolition”; did not “notify the district prior to performing demolition activities at mobile home park”; and failed to notify the district 10 working days before demolition began.

The partial tear-down of the property, located at 18300 Soledad Canyon Road in Canyon Country, dates back to early-March. Demolition crews were seen commencing work toward the back of the 30-plus abandoned homes, piling up leftover mattresses, furniture and other household items.

Since then, security guards have kept watch over the property. None were seen Friday, but the area remained gated and with no trespassing signs. With a stop to demolition work, at least for now, the area has returned to its ghost town-like self, leaving passers-by questioning the worn-out conditions of the units and wondering what happened to former residents.

Soledad Trailer Lodge sits behind a metal fence that separates the property and the Santa Clara River. Despite its close proximity, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said it was not close enough to cause concerns in relation to demolition work.

“Our regulatory senior project manager says the park appears to be 300 feet set back from the river, so he didn’t see any permit issues associated with the demolition,” said Jay Field, with the Engineers’ L.A. District.

SCAQMD’s legal department has not yet determined “whether to proceed with a civil or criminal case,” said spokeswoman Nahal Mogharabi. She added that because each case varies, she could not comment on how long that process would take, but that “South Coast AQMD will continue to monitor the site.”  

Neither Pat Crellin, manager of the mobile home park, nor Ira Robb of Robbco Properties, owner of the property, have been available to comment on what the plans are for the demolition or thereafter.  

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