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Scientology is pulling out all the stops for its next gleaming Clearwater landmark

[The future L. Ron Hubbard Hall]

Rod Keller has a great report for us today on David Miscavige’s next precious object, the planned performance hall in Clearwater right next to the Super Power building…

L. Ron Hubbard Hall is coming to downtown Clearwater, faster than most observers thought possible, but slower than Scientology has been telling its membership. For most of the year Scientology has been telling members that the new 3,600-seat theater and museum building will be breaking ground in November. They don’t need permission if they intend to have a photo op with golden shovels as a ceremonial groundbreaking. But Scientology has three obstacles to clear before they break ground in order to build a foundation and it can’t happen this month.

 

 
The property is 319 S. Garden Ave. In this overhead illustration, Franklin Street is to the left (north), Court Street to the right (south), and S. Garden (west) at the bottom. The corner of the Super Power building can be seen in the lower left. Scientology owns the parking structure on the east side and uses it to park their fleet of buses that circulate between housing units and the Fort Harrison, Super Power and many other downtown buildings. In 2013 the city objected when a large tent was erected over the site for the annual IAS festivities. The threat of fines of $250 per day didn’t seem to have their desired effect and the events were held as planned.

The original plan in 2014 was for a Mediterranean Revival building to match the style of the Fort Harrison Hotel, the Super Power building, nearby Peace Memorial church, the Post Office and other buildings in the downtown district. Scientologists were told that S. Garden street would be purchased from the city and renamed L. Ron Hubbard Street. The city planning office says that no street purchase proposal ever reached them, and Clearwater’s downtown plan is that the current street grid remain as-is.

 

 
In 2015 the plan for a Mediterranean revival facade was scrapped in favor of an angled glass facade. In May, 2018 Scientology completed a land swap with the city and now own the entire block between S. Garden and Fort Harrison Ave. That area will be named L. Ron Hubbard Park and will feature a large steel ball and 21 pillars, each bearing one of the precepts from Hubbard’s pamphlet, The Way to Happiness.

 

 
That’s the plan submitted by Scientology to the City of Clearwater. In October the development company met with Clearwater’s planning department to review the plan, and a number of changes are being requested to minor details such as curb placements, crosswalks and moving some utilities. The plan names two Scientology contacts – Glen Stilo and Alex Parodi. Both are Sea Org members posted with the Church of Scientology Religious Trust. This little-known Sea Org org holds mortgages and property on behalf of Scientology. Their contact is listed as “319 S. Garden Avenue, Clearwater. No phone, No fax.”

Once planning permission is granted they must seek zoning permission which could take a month before they are allowed to apply for building permits. It can’t all happen in November, but it could start as soon as January or February.

 

[Super Power Building, also known as the Flag Building]

How soon can we expect LRH Hall to be completed? The plan doesn’t say. The neighboring Super Power building began construction in 1998 and opened to Scientologists in 2013. Scientology denies that they deliberately delayed the opening in order to raise more money for the project. The pressure on Scientologists to donate in that period was intense and fundraising for LRH Hall is ramping up as the groundbreaking approaches. The very name of the new facility will help their efforts. This is being sold not as a donation to Scientology, but as a way to personally honor L. Ron Hubbard. Even those members with doubts or questions about current management will find it hard to refuse to honor Ron.

 

[LRH Hall donors at the L. Ron Hubbard house in Bay Head, NJ]

LRH Hall fundraisers and large donors have spent the last few years undertaking a pilgrimage, visiting various sites important in the life of Hubbard. It’s a way for them to have more “reality” on Ron and his life. Scientology is leveraging the heritage site properties they have bought and restored in the last few years including the Bay Head house above. Hubbard and his second wife Sara moved there in 1949 before the move to Elizabeth, NJ and the introduction of Dianetics in the magazine Amazing Science Fiction.

 


 
A stop on the tour not owned by Scientology is the Explorer’s Club in New York. Hubbard was elected to membership in 1940 after years during which he falsely claimed to be a member. Scientologists come for banquets, tours and to see the brick in the floor with Hubbard’s name, next to astronaut Neil Armstrong. Everybody stops to pose with the stuffed polar bear.

 

 
Ironically nobody will visit Hubbard’s residence in Clearwater where the LRH Hall will be built. It doesn’t exist. After the Sea Org abandoned the Apollo and bought the Fort Harrison Hotel he went into hiding in the King Arthur apartments in nearby Dunedin, Florida. Hubbard did “drive-by” inspections of the Fort Harrison but we have found no evidence he ever set foot in the building.

 


 
The L. Ron Hubbard Hall and adjacent park in Clearwater are becoming a key feature in Scientology’s overall fundraising efforts. Millions are being raised and as usual there is no reason to believe they will stop fundraising once the costs of construction are met. If the project remains incomplete for the same 15 year period as the Super Power Building relations with the city will suffer, and that relationship has never been pleasant ever since the days when L. Ron Hubbard operated from his hide-out in Dunedin.

 
— Rod Keller

 
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Scientology’s celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs’ — now with comments!

[Catherine Bell, Chick Corea, and Nancy Cartwright]

We’re building landing pages about David Miscavige’s favorite playthings, including celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs.’ We’re hoping you’ll join in and help us gather as much information as we can about them, in order to build a record and maintain a watch as Scientology continues its inexorable decline — and yes, we finally have comments working on these new pages! Head on over and help us with links and photos and comments.

Scientology’s celebrities, from A to Z! Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Scientology’s ‘Ideal Orgs,’ from one end of the planet to the other! Help us build up pages about each these worldwide locations!

Today’s Ideal Org: San Francisco, California!

 

 
——————–

Now on sale: Twice the Miss Lovely!

 
Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. What a pleasure it is for us to work with her on this after we wrote about her ordeal as a victim of Scientology’s “Fair Game” campaigns in our 2015 book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, which is also on sale in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions.

 
——————–

THE WHOLE TRACK

[ONE year ago] Read the police report for the 17-year-old injured at Scientology’s ‘Flag’ building
[TWO years ago] Trouble for Scientology in 1966: When the Daily Mail called L. Ron Hubbard’s degrees ‘bogus’
[THREE years ago] Hey, Mark Bunker, what’s taking that film of yours — ‘Knowledge Report’ — so long?
[FOUR years ago] Scientology’s own plans show it paid $37 million for a building to serve only 87 people
[FIVE years ago] Claire Headley Takes Us OT! Here We Go with Scientology’s Operating Thetan Level ONE!
[SIX years ago] Scientology Sunday Funnies: The Road to Clear!

 
——————–

Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 5,258 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 1,891 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,371 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 434 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 322 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,497 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,271 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,045 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,391 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 10,957 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 6,877 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,044 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 2,625 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 2,885 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 1,925 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 1,637 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,163 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,252 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,392 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 2,712 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 7,568 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 2,687 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,043 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,345 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,451 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 1,854 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 1,725 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,308 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 1,813 days.
Mary Jane Sterne has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,057 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,166 days.

——————–

3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on November 4, 2018 at 07:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2017 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Undergound Bunker (2012-2017), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates

Join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news

 

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