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Los Angeles Searches for Improvements to the Much-Maligned Pershing Square

A series of public outreach events are being held in Pershing Square to determine how to make the park more engaging. Live music and fewer physical barriers to entry are among the ideas suggested.
May 17, 2015, 9am PDT | Philip Rojc | @PhilipRojc
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Located downtown, Los Angeles' Pershing Square has been roundly criticized for its user-unfriendly design, in part an attempt to keep the homeless away. Raised over a parking garage, a collection of barriers and planters makes the space hard to see from street level. Entry is counterintuitive and, at certain hours, can be unsafe. 

The Los Angeles City Council has secured an initial $2 million to improve the design, and has now turned to the public for suggestions. "For four hours on April 17, passersby [...] gave their answers by posting blue, purple and yellow sticky notes on a seven-foot-tall board, and by scribbling notes on chalkboards. The suggestions included having art, literature and cultural events and, overwhelmingly, live music." 

"More significant, and more expensive, changes could follow. Pershing Square Renew is working with the city to raise money, conduct community outreach and launch a design competition to reimagine the five-acre park built that was built in 1866, but has gone through many changes."

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Published on Friday, May 8, 2015 in LA Downtown News
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