DOWNEY - A barber school is slated to open in an Imperial Highway retail strip after gaining approval from the Planning Commission on Wednesday.ABC School of Barbering will lease a 1,200-ft tenant space inside the shopping center at 8828 Imperial Highway. According to owner Kresha Crawford, the school will offer training in haircuts, facials and "scalp manipulations" to students as young as 16 1/2 years old. The school will also cater to retirees and adults with "too much time on their hands who may get into trouble." "We would like to help rehabilitate people," Crawford told planning commissioners. Crawford said her family has owned and operated a barber school in Los Angeles for more than 30 years. They're moving the business to Downey, she said, because many of their students are from the Downey, Norwalk and Lakewood area. Crawford said her classes are 1,500 hours long and can be completed within 9-12 months, depending on whether the student attends classes part-time or full-time. The barber school will be open five days a week, Tuesday through Saturday. Residents will be invited to receive free or discounted haircuts by students, Crawford said, adding that she plans to market the school through Downey Adult School and advertising in the PennySaver. The Planning Commission was unanimous in granting Crawford's request for an operating permit, which is required of all schools that open in the city. "I think it's great you're coming out here and giving to the community," planning commissioner Ernie Garcia told Crawford. Planning commissioner Michael Murray agreed, saying, "I'd like to see more of this in our city. I'm in favor of this 100 percent." The barber school will be located in a retail strip on Imperial Highway and Lakewood Boulevard. The only other tenant is a karate school, and city officials said parking will not be an issue even if the remaining tenant spaces are rented. The school will feature 14 barber chairs, two shampoo bowls, a classroom and waiting area.
********** Published: May 19, 2011 - Volume 10 - Issue 5