RESCUING ELVIS : ROADWORK STEALS SHINE FROM ICON'S `FLAMING STAR'.Byline: David Bloom David Bloom (May 22, 1963 – April 6, 2003) was an NBC journalist (co-anchor of Weekend Today and reporter) until his sudden death in 2003 at the age of 39. Early life Daily News Staff Writer
Elvis Presley hasn't weathered well.
Millions of visitors' feet and years of subway construction have left the King's bronze commemorative star and those reserved for the hundreds of other music, television, film and radio celebrities along the Walk of Fame in tattered, battered, sometimes shattered shat·ter
v. shat·tered, shat·ter·ing, shat·ters
1. To cause to break or burst suddenly into pieces, as with a violent blow.
Some community activists say they're all shook up over neglectful ne·glect·ful
Characterized by neglect; heedless: neglectful of their responsibilities. See Synonyms at negligent.
ne·glect city, MTA (1) (Message Transfer Agent or Mail Transfer Agent) The store and forward part of a messaging system. See messaging system.
(2) See M Technology Association.
1. (messaging) MTA - Message Transfer Agent. and Hollywood officials who have consigned the singer's star - the most visited of them all - to the ``Heartbreak Hotel.''
``It's disintegrating. It's a mess,'' said Chris Shabel, a member of the Hollywood Project Area Committee. ``This is a great attraction and they don't take care of it.''
In fact, Presley's star looks like it should be returned to sender.
It tilts up on one end because of settling. The terrazzo terrazzo
Type of flooring consisting of marble chips set in cement or epoxy resin that is poured and ground smooth when dry. Terrazzo was ubiquitous in the 20th century in commercial and institutional buildings. surrounding the star is badly cracked and gouged, and the metal framing around the star is missing.
``It's cracking to pieces. It's looking pretty bad,'' said Jerry Schneiderman, whose building's basement at 6777 Hollywood Blvd., just east of Highland Avenue, underlies part of the Presley star.
Contributing to the sorry state of Presley's star, Schneiderman contends, is settling caused by underground construction for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Hollywood-Highland subway station.
The MTA plans to eventually replace or repair any stars damaged when construction is finished, but one agency spokesman disagrees that subway work has damaged the King's star.
``Some people in Hollywood say the crack happened when Lisa Marie
Lisa Marie Smith (born December 5, 1968 in Piscataway Township, New Jersey), more commonly referred to as simply Lisa Marie, is an American model and actress. married Michael Jackson Noun 1. Michael Jackson - United States singer who began singing with his four brothers and later became a highly successful star during the 1980s (born in 1958)
Michael Joe Jackson, Jackson ,'' said MTA senior public affairs Those public information, command information, and community relations activities directed toward both the external and internal publics with interest in the Department of Defense. Also called PA. See also command information; community relations; public information. officer Stephen Sawyer.
Fans seeking mementos from their visit to the star haven't helped its condition. Some have chipped away at a hole in the terrazzo. Years of footprints also have contributed ample wear and tear, officials said.
Hollywood Chamber of Commerce officials say the problem is bigger than just Presley's star, which was installed sometime between 1958 and 1960, with about 1,700 others added when the Walk of Fame was first created.
The Walk of Fame, created with an initial $1.25 million tax infusion from Hollywood merchants, draws about 9 million visitors a year.
And while chamber officials say they don't want to be cruel to Presley or other stars along the Walk of Fame, they only have a small amount of money to repair the tourist attractions.
After inquiries this week from the Daily News, chamber Chairman Johnny Grant Johnny Grant is a radio personality, television producer and the honorary mayor of Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, which is an unpaid and unelected ceremonial position with no legal status, given that Hollywood is not a city, but rather a district within the City of Los Angeles. said he has ordered the terrazzo company that installs new stars to fix the Presley star as soon as possible.
``It's the No. 1 attraction in Hollywood and we want to keep it that way,'' said Grant, the honorary mayor of Hollywood, who also is chairman of the Hollywood Historic Trust, which tries to preserve notable structures and attractions in the area.
Part of the problem is that star maintenance falls in a jurisdictional gray area. The chamber oversees the star application process and owns the copyright on the Walk of Fame, while the city owns the sidewalk the stars are cemented in, Grant said.
Both profit from the Walk's continued attraction to tourists, but both have held off major repairs in part because of ongoing MTA subway construction work, which has left large stretches of Hollywood sidewalks in bad shape.
Two years ago, the transit agency tried to avoid some problems by removing and storing more than 200 stars, including those of Charlie Chaplin, Milton Berle Milton Berle (July 12, 1908 - March 27, 2002) was an Emmy-winning American comedian who was born Milton Berlinger. As the manic host of NBC's Texaco Star Theater (1948-1955), he was the first major star of television. , Greta Garbo, Judy Garland, Fred Astaire and Ingrid Bergman, said chamber Publicity Director Ana Martinez-Holler.
The agency plans to replace those stars and repair any others damaged by its work when construction is done, said Sawyer. But that could take as long as three more years.
``We don't want to step in and do it while construction is still going on,'' Sawyer said.
In the meantime Adv. 1. in the meantime - during the intervening time; "meanwhile I will not think about the problem"; "meantime he was attentive to his other interests"; "in the meantime the police were notified"
meantime, meanwhile , fixing the sidewalks ``really is the city's responsibility,'' Grant said. ``But it doesn't look like they're going to do it,'' he said.
City Councilwoman Jackie Goldberg Jackie Goldberg (born June 16, 1937) is an American politician and teacher, and a member of the Democratic Party. She is a former member of the California State Assembly. , who represents the district, did not return calls.
PHOTO (color) Chris Shabel, back left, Dorothy Halper, Gerald Schneiderman, Jacquie Shabel and Hilary Carr stand in the faded gleam of Elvis Presley's star.
Tina Gerson/Daily News