Looking for Safer Footfalls PAGE THREE Recycled Materials Reworked With an Artist’s Touch PAGE 8 | lIMelIGht Self Portrait Reflects Perfect Casting PAGE 12 | a&e Arts Foundation Funds School Program PAGE 18 | schools / sports “Our Town-Our Paper” lbindy.com August 24, 2012 | Volume XI, Issue 34 photo by andrea adelson Survival of the Fittest in Laguna Canyon By Daniella Walsh | LB Indy Laguna College of Art and Design took the wraps off its newest housing expansion for its freshman class last Friday, a near doubling of housing for 40 students at least 100 miles from home. Adjacent to the Tivoli Too grounds and controlled by the owners of event space Seven Degrees, the 8,000 square feet structure less than a mile from the main Laguna Canyon campus is more akin to compact apartments than a typical dormitory. It features tiny double bunked bedrooms with streamlined common kitchen areas, a laundry room and an outdoor patio and living area. Even so, the extra student suites displace studio space used by seniors and graduate students and not unex-pectedly stir up some town and gown friction over the college’s continuing expansion. Mushrooming in recent years beyond its original campus to accom-modate additional academic depart-ments, the college now has leased or purchased seven outlying buildings throughout Laguna Canyon and continues to hunt no further than its Nandi Hildebrand, 8, a third-grader at St. Catherine’s school, shows off her haul of homegrown carrots. More at Stake in Imperiled Garden By Justin Swanson, Special to the Independent Two Carlsbad residents, John Deane and Erin McGrath, visited Laguna Beach on Monday, finding the South Laguna Community Garden on their way to Pedro’s Tacos. Both were impressed by the neatly ordered beds overflowing with tomatoes, chard, basil and lettuces. Deane described it as an “urban retreat” of sorts. Yet, the property that is home to the town’s only communal garden recently was put on the market, jeopardizing the garden’s continued existence and, consequently, a plethora of benefits it provides. All hope is not lost for the garden that sprang from local initiative. The South Laguna Civic Association, which has sponsored the garden since its begin-ning, is seeking 501(c) 3 non-profit status to ensure a tax benefit should potential donors be found to pay the $1 million asking price. Property owner Paul Tran originally wanted to build on the two-tiered lot at Eagle Rock Way and South Coast Highway. A resident of Louisiana, Tran felt removed from the land and ultimately allowed it to be cultivated as a community garden at the sugges-tion of South Laguna resident Morrie Granger. Tran visited the garden since and called the transformation “really nice.” Over time, however, the property tax began to take its toll, prompting Tran to sell, as he explains it. He is GarDen, page 16 Gala Donor Suspected in Scam By Andrea Adelson | LB Indy Police investigators say they will seek multiple felony charges against a phony donor suspected of writing bad checks for more than $11,000 in auc-tion items at a Laguna Beach gala and reselling some of them on Craigslist. On Thursday, Laguna Beach police seized some of the remaining auction items after conducting a probation search at the home of a 34-year-old Cypress resident, who is already on felony probation for fraud related charges, according to Capt. Jason Kravetz. The suspect was identified from a photo taken of guests arriving last September at the Aids Services Foundation’s Red Ball II, Kravetz said. Donor, page 22 colleGe, page 22 To compete for top students, the art college continues to add amenities such as student housing and a common patio area, visited last week by supporters.