Serendipity for Downtown L.A.?

At a recent event in Los Angeles, Cecilia Estolano, CEO of the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles, presented her vision for the Downtown of the future in one of the country's most notoriously diffuse urban centers.
March 7, 2009, 9am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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The articles features excerpts from Cecilia Estolano's presentation:

"Thus, the question is not whether we need a downtown-we have a downtown-it's what is the downtown that we want? We're trying to rebuild a downtown of angels, not of demons, a downtown that is economically diverse, that is not just about the corporate elite, and that is about the aspirations of the immigrants and entrepreneurial spirit that made this a great city and has always made it a great city..."

"The other thing I want to say about Downtown is we also need to worry about the space itself. We've overly master-planned it. There is not a single spontaneous site along Grand Avenue. We need to focus now away from the mega projects into spontaneity. What are the interesting little places we can create-the little bookstores, the little funky houses, the little cool retail spaces? One of my jobs is to keep those retailers in business. All those cool retailers keep people living Downtown, wanting to stay in Downtown."

"A downtown should be filled with experimentation, public spaces, opportunities for new industries, places where creative classes come together, and cultural and entertainment venues that aren't exclusively corporate. As much as I am appreciative of the jobs created by L.A. Live and the tremendous spirit and energy that comes out of having the brands there, I still think it would be wonderful to have more serendipitous and authentic spaces for Downtown."

Thanks to James Brasuell

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Published on Friday, February 27, 2009 in The Planning Report
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