Developer Defeats Planning Expertise in Downtown Los Angeles

The Los Angeles City Council recently approved a pedestrian footbridge for a large development west of Downtown. The approval came suddenly and despite the protests of advocates, planning professionals, and the volunteer City Planning Commission.

May 25, 2014, 11:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Los Angeles Smog

12x / Flickr

"The Los Angeles City Council on Friday approved a controversial downtown pedestrian bridge that a developer said was needed to protect his tenants from homeless people living nearby," reports David Zahniser.

The unanimous council decision came after Planning Department staff and the City Planning Commission rejected the proposed bridge in February, "saying the project conflicts with downtown design guidelines and planning policies. They warned the bridge could make the sidewalk less safe by sending foot traffic above Temple."

For examples of how universally derided the idea was (except by the City Council, of course) among planning staff and design advocates, read all-for-naught editorials here and here and the soundbites from an earlier article by Zahniser.

The developer's name, Geoff Palmer, might be familiar to those following the planning discussion in Los Angeles. He's the very same who won a lawsuit against the city in 2009 effectively throwing out the city's inclusionary requirements, which had implications for the entire state.

Friday, May 16, 2014 in Los Angeles Times

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