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City of Industry - Greed and Sleaze Forbes Article

Brief Highlights from October 2, 2000 Forbes

"City of Greed -The secret behind the wealth of Las Vegas' newest mogul is found in the murky history of a smelly little California city called Industry."

"The City of Industry is not a place tourists frequent when they visit Los Angeles. With its low-slung, monotonous industrial buildings, crisscrossing railroad tracks and cheesy commercial strip featuring topless bars, liquor stores and bodegas, it's the ugly stepsister to Tinseltown's more glamorous haunts.

One of the only bright spots among the industrial detritus is a six-story white building surrounded by immaculate lawns. This is the baronial headquarters of the aptly names Majestic Realty, a real estate developer owned by two-year Forbes 400 member Edward Roski Jr. that lords over a 38 million square-foot empire in nine states."

The article tells how those homely boxes of industrial buildings helped him earn a fortunate used to acquire stakes in the LA Kings, and LA Lakers, recently purchased for $365 million the Las Vegas Hilton and plans to spend much more to overhaul it to attract more conventions.

Ed Roski is unique among developers since he so masterfully exploited the special circumstances of 15-square-mile City of Industry to become one of the nations richest men.

City of Industry was created 43 years ago under a quirky LA county law that was meant to discourage overbuilding in residential areas. Industry was set up to take on the messy development others didn't want in their own backyards. The founders were short of the minimum 500 residents needed to incorporate, so they added the 169 patients and employees of a local mental hospital to the count.

Industry is still run by a tight group of insiders who rarely disagree. The town has a long tradition of manipulating rules to benefit insiders, most notably Roski.

Industries "blighted" properties were undeveloped ranches and cow pastures, but after development of Industry, it would no longer be considered blighted by today's standards.

Dave notes, interesting timing of this article since I read it on the airplane to Los Angeles where I was updating reviews of many Hostess Clubs mostly in the City of Industry. I found the city very modern, not at all low-slung, ugly and the only smell I noted was nice breath smells from dancers kisses. Most areas I've been in were new and modern and the industrial areas such as on the way to Sugar Honey was very upscale. OK.. Sugar Honey Club might sound sleazy to a Bush Republican but the buildings were all newer and nice!

BTW, as I mention in my detailed review of one Hostess club, it is 3 doors away from a Republican and Bush Campaign Headquarters! So even the Republicans aren't ignoring City of Industry! Maybe they are secretly enjoying all the great strip clubs and hostess clubs or even Sun Massage!

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