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research

natural habitat

170
research
natural habitat

171
natural habitat
unlined stretch:
Sepulveda Flood Control Basin

Chavez Ravine

downtown site

iver
geles R
Los An
unlined stretch:
Glendale Narrows

unlined stretch:
Los Angeles River unlined
south of Willow Street,
Los Angeles River channelized Long Beach

dams and reservoirs

debris basin

Los Angeles River


river length: 51 miles
infrastructure
natural habitat

172 websites:
research

lalc.k12.ca.us/target/units/river/riverweb.html channelized river length: 47.9 miles


lacity.org/councilcmte/lariver
organizations.oxy.edu/lariver
folar.org

description
The 48 miles of the concrete viaduct that stands in for As the city grew exponentially, the Department of As a result, in the late 1930s local politicians with the
the Los Angeles River was once a thriving natural body Water and Power viewed the river as an insufficient Army Corps of Engineers initiated the bold decision to
of water capable of sustaining a population of 250,000 source and tapped and built the famous aqueducts to control and revise the purpose of the Los Angeles River.
—about 6.25% of the current population. Discovered the High Sierras. It became a flood-control channel, an urban amenity.
and settled by colonists from Mexico in 1781, the river This industrial usage begat similar development along
continued to nurture and feed a growing Los Angeles Additionally, in the 1930s the river flooded, killing 50 its banks, negating any potential for it becoming an eco-
from its early colonial period to its days as an emerg- people and damaging huge swaths of property. It was logically sound and green recreational destination.
ing metropolis. apparent the river had neither the ability to sustain or
control its water capacity.
1880

earliest documentation of the L.A. River

1900

downtown Los Angeles


1914

1815–1825 1825–1889
Rapid urbanization of Los Angeles con-
flicts with the ecology of the river. City
1938 begins to receive water remotely from
200 miles north.

Army Corps of Engineers complete


the channelization of the river.

modern flooding

1889–1930 (pre-channelization) 1938 (channelized)–today

1995

6 project site
2003
0 1 2 4 8 10 miles
1/2

Los Angeles River Los Angeles River


historic routes timeline
natural habitat

173
websites: website:
research

lalc.k12.ca.us/target/units/river/riverweb.html deliriousla.net/lariver
organizations.oxy.edu/lariver
folar.org
now:
1. lacity.org/councilcmte/lariver
2. Jose Cardenas, “Bureaucratic Shoals Slow River Effort, Multiple Jurisdictions Complicate Efforts to Revitalize the 51-mile Los Angeles River,” Los Angeles Times, January 9, 2003, sec. B.

now
1. A resurging interest in revitalizing the Los Ange- vitalization efforts on our historic river; opportunities 2. Attempts to revitalize the Los Angeles River are ham-
les River as a natural and cultural amenity in the city for parks, trails, recreation, nature, neighborhood pered by too many agencies with jurisdiction, including
has emerged. Various academic and non-profit groups identity, jobs, community development, tourism, civic the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles County
have initiated a grass-roots effort to open discussion pride and much more.” Department of Public Works, Northeast Trees, and the
with policy makers and developers on a viable, eco- The following are the Committee’s case studies: Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy. Ironically, these
logical, and economically sound model for the river. Guadalupe River, San Jose, California agencies are not responsible for preventing or clean-
The Los Angeles City Council has formed the Ad Hoc Platte River, Denver, Colorado ing the graffiti and other eyesores that plague the river.
Committee on the L.A. River: Rio Salado, Tempe, Arizona Sound visions may emanate from politicians, but the
“The Ad Hoc River Committee will focus on major re- San Antonio River, San Antonio, Texas river’s immediate needs are maintenance and security.
Chavez Ravine
Los Angeles River watershed downtown site
land coverage: 834 sq. mi.
northern watershed: 360 sq. mi.
(forest or open spaces)

iver
southern watershed: 474 sq. mi.

eles R
(urban development)

g
Los An
200-year flood plain

flood plain: city


websites:
ladpw.org/wmd/watershed/LA
lalc.k12.ca.us/target/units/river/riverweb.html
lacity.org/councilcmte/lariver
organizations.oxy.edu/lariver
folar.org

average
year 0 inches 10 20 30 40
1880
1890
1900
1910

1920
1930
1940
1950
1960
1970
1980
1990

rainfall: 1880–2000 2000


natural habitat

Los Angeles Times, 2003


research

174 description:
Ingersoll, Raymond. Bringing Water to Los Angeles: A Guidebook to the Los Angeles Aqueduct and the Sierra Nevada (UCLA, 1996).
now:
1. Louis Sahagun, “Cutback Allows Aqueduct Overhaul,” Los Angeles Times, March 3, 2003, sec. B.

description now
The original aqueduct intercepted the Owens River Aqueduct (completed in 1941), and local groundwater 1. The Colorado River Aqueduct saw its most exten-
within the Owens Valley and brought water, driven sources. Complex ecological and societal consequenc- sive overhaul by the Metropolitan Water District in fifty
only by gravity, 231 miles south to L.A. In 1970, a sec- es have resulted from this human intervention of the years. Today they began refilling the entire system af-
ond L.A. Aqueduct was constructed south of Haiwee landscape. The most obvious include the desertifica- ter shut down and draining.
Reservoir in the Owens Valley; this increased water tion of parts of the Owens Valley, the complete drying- Colorado River Aqueduct performance:
delivery by 50%, so that the combined L.A. Aqueduct up of Owens Lake, the lowering of Mono Lake, and the capacity: 1 billion gallons / day
today supplies approximately 70% of L.A.’s water. The rapid development of the Los Angeles area. population: 10 million people
remainder comes from the California aqueduct (State length: 242 miles
Water Project; completed in 1973), the Colorado River cost: $8.2 million
California Aqueduct

iver
L.A. R
filtration plant

er
Colorado River Aqueduct

Riv
aqueduct

na
ta A
watershed boundary

San
river / creek
groundwater basin / sub-basin

lake

water infrastructure
websites:
lalc.k12.ca.us/target/units/river/riverweb.html
lacity.org/councilcmte/lariver
organizations.oxy.edu/lariver
folar.org
deliriousla.net/lariver
iver
L.A. R

er
Riv

dam
na
ta A
San

river
100-year flood plain

200-year flood plain

historical flood plain

flood region: metro


natural habitat

websites:
research

organizations.oxy.edu/lariver
175
deliriousla.net/lariver
now:
1. Tim Quinn, “Plan Alters Water Flow to L.A.,” Los Angeles Times, August 9, 2003, sec. B.
2. Miguel Bustillo, “Giant inflatable rubber dams would create an artificial lake downtown that could serve as a centerpiece for urban renewal,” Los Angeles Times, January 24, 2003, sec. B.
3. George Ramos, “Cleaner Water on Tap at City’s Echo Park Lake,” Los Angeles Times, March 2, 2003, sec. B.

now
1. A 15% drop in water coming from the Colorado 2. A local artist has generated buzz with his idea to 3. Initiated by a search for a missing girl, public
River has resulted in a new proposal to review how create an artificial lake in downtown Los Angeles us- attention focused on the continually stagnant murky
Southern California can receive more water. Part of ing giant inflatable rubber dams strung along the Los quality of the Echo Park lake water. The girl was located
the project involves altering existing infrastructural Angeles River. Politicians are attracted by the notion; but concerns over water quality persisted. To address
systems in Northern California that will free up more it could form the centerpiece for an urban renewal the concern, biofilters will be used to clear the water in
water for Los Angeles and San Diego. The operation plan that would unite neighborhoods currently discon- Echo, Machao, MacArthur, Debs, and Reseda Parks.
is a joint effort by the State Water Project and the nected by rail yards and warehouses. Biofilters utilize live wetlands plants and air pumps
federal Central Valley Project. below the surface to aerate and oxygenate the water.
The lake cleanup will cost $1 million.
1,200 sq. ft.
average size of yard per
x 1,287,679 homes
in City of Los Angeles

= 34,482 acres
single family house (R1 zone)

total size of residential front and back yards

= 41 Central Parks in New York City

total residential yard acreage


City of Los Angeles
natural habitat

websites:
research

factfinder.census.gov (2000 U.S. Census)


176 Los Angeles Almanac, 2001
lacity.org/lahd/curriculum/gettingfacts/infrastructure/parks.html

Central Park, New York City Griffith Park, City of Los Angeles
843 acres 4,217 acre

The City of Los Angeles


has 15,600 acres of parkland,
including the largest municipal park
in the United States—Griffith Park

description
New Yorkers champion Central Park as the cultural found nature rather than a designed piece of land- space per person. As with automobiles and transporta-
heart and physical lung of Manhattan. Its location and scape. Unfortunately, many residents bypass the larg- tion, the individual trumps the collective. Rather than
design serves as the perfect antidote to the hyper- est municipal park in the United States serving instead a collective enterprise, the green spaces are the actual
dense urbanity that envelopes every individual.. It is as a more visual and acoustic backdrop for freeways back and front yards of each resident, their own slice of
everyone’s yard and collective shared space. and the neighborhoods that encircle it. Griffith Park the public park pie.
also suffers from a less exportable mythological iden- In Los Angeles, the average single residential plot is
Los Angeles’s geological response is Griffith Park. tity than its more popular local rival, the beach. 5,000 sq. ft. offering aproximately 1,200 sq. ft. of green
Centrally located and offering a more rugged and hilly landscape to tend, enjoy, and hold dominion over.
exodus from the metropolis, it represents a piece of One has to recalibrate an understanding of green
Las Tunas Topanga Will Rogers
Malibu County Beach Beach State Beach
Point

Santa Monica
State Beach

low tide
high tide

Venice City
Beach

155 feet
average depth
x 45 miles
approx . length of beach
of beach
Dockweiler
State Beach

= 845 acres
total beach surface

Manhattan
Beach

= aproximately
1 Central Park in
New York City Hermosa
Beach

Redondo
Beach

beaches in Los Angeles


natural habitat

websites:
research

usc.edu/org/seagrant/beach/beach.html
beaches.co.la.ca.us/BandH/Beaches/Main.htm 177

now
city park ratio City of Los Angeles
Los Angeles River Basin 152 sq. ft. per person 382 public parks 28 senior citizen centers
(non-mountain area) 123 recreation centers 13 golf courses
Los Angeles 130 sq. ft. per person
Chicago 115 sq. ft. per person 52 centers 18 child care centers
Boston 166 sq. ft. per person 52 pools 7 camps
New York City 300 sq. ft. per person
Minneapolis 756 sq. ft. per person
97.61 acres total acreage of downtown
parks and open spaces

9
14
10
400
380 7 11
12
360
13
340
4
+400
320 5
300 15
6
280 3
8
260
2 16
240

1
220

+225
parks and open spaces area (approx.)

1. Grand Hope Park 162,863 sq. ft.


2. Pershing Square 225,002 sq. ft.
3. Central Library 76,686 sq. ft.
4. Bunker Hill steps 17,786 sq. ft.
5. California Plaza 264,997 sq. ft.
6. Angels Flight 108,267 sq. ft.
7. MOCA Grand Avenue 432,681 sq. ft.
8. Biddy Mason Park 41,469 sq. ft.
9. Music Center 59,255 sq. ft.
10. Paseo de los pobladores 236,806 sq. ft.
11. Court of Flags 101,434 sq. ft.
12. Criminal Courts Building 116,864 sq. ft.
13. Los Angeles City Hall 339,413 sq. ft.
14. El Pueblo Historic Park 592,757 sq. ft.
15. MOCA Geffen Contemporary and 87,770 sq. ft. Bunker Hill Financial District
Japanese American National Museum
16. Little Tokyo 83,314 sq. ft.
17. other 1,304,596 sq. ft.

total green space 4,251,960 sq. ft.


(97.61 acres)

parks and open spaces topography


downtown Los Angeles downtown Los Angeles
natural habitat

websites: websites:
research

navigatela.org navigatela.org
laparks.org/info.htm nationalmap.gov

=
178 now:
1. interenvironment.org/pa/trzyna-smmc.ht
2. Martha Groves, “Making Parks Work So People Can Relax,” Los Angeles Times, July 20, 2003, sec. E.
3. Li Fellers, “244-Acre Development Dies,” Los Angeles Times, April 1, 2003, sec. B.

now
1. “Los Angeles has . . . the least accessible park sys- 2. Edwin Schlossberg, disciple of Buckminster Fuller 3. 244 acres of vibrant nature with 2,300 trees were
tem of any major city in America. Only 30 percent of and reknowned advocate of interactive projects, plans slated for a secluded luxury housing development.
Angelenos live within a quarter mile [0.4 km] of a park, a $2.7 billion communal spirit in Playa Vista with “a After 10 years of community and environmental
compared with between 80 percent and 90 percent in number of ceremonial rituals throughout the year.” opposition by a Glendale group, the developer sold the
Boston and New York. Here in Los Angeles more than The project is supported by Steve Soboroff and pro- land for $25 million to the Santa Monica Mountains
700,000 children do not live within walking distance of motes empowering ideas such as competitive gar- Conservancy, City of Glendale, and the State of
a park,” Mayor Villaraigosa, 2005 dening. Schlossberg says, “It’s such a great opportu- California to be converted into a park. The purchase of
nity to create tools for a woven, integrated community. this park came through Governor Davis’s Urban Parks
There’s something epic about it.” Initiative.
parks and open spaces area (approx.)

1. Taylor Yards 30 acres

2. Elysian Park 575 acres

3. The Los Angeles State Historic Park 33.2 acres

warehouse district Los Angeles River

0 100ft 500ft 1000ft

0 1/3mile 1/2mile 1 mile

parks and open spaces


Chavez Ravine and Elysian Park
natural habitat

websites:
research

navigatela.org
laparks.org/info.htm
Los Angeles Almanac, 2001 179
nationalmap.gov
description:
Elysian Park Master Plan. City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation & Parks. August 2005. downloadable from laparks.org

description
Elysian Park: Originally part of the Spanish land grant the west. Bisected by narrow neighborhood and park protect the natural resource. According to the Master
from King Carlos III of Spain to El Pueblo de Los An- roads, as well as wide arterial streets including Sta- Plan, “revitalization of Elysian Park is a key component
geles in the late 18th century and officially declared a dium Way, Academy Road, and Elysian Park Avenue, in the city’s strategy to create and maintain a desirable
park in 1886, Elysian Park is the city’s oldest park. The the park is accessible from local neighborhoods and quality of life in Los Angeles.”
park’s 604 acres comprise urban trails, panoramic downtown Los Angeles.
overlooks, picnic spots, and green recreation areas.
In 2005, the Department of Recreation & Parks drafted
Elysian Park is bounded by Dodger Stadium to the a new Master Plan to revitalize the park, based on the
south, the Los Angeles River to the east, the 5 Free- desires of the community and the city to preserve and
way to the north, and residential neighborhoods to
= 1,273 x

metropolitan Los Angeles project site

5,958,581,000 gallons/day 4,680,739 gallons/day


(9 Silver Lake Reservoirs) (1% of Silver Lake Reservoir)

water consumption
website:
mwdh2o.com/mwdh2o/pages/yourwater/ywater01.html
lacity.org/ead/EADWeb-WNR/drinking_water.htm
Los Angeles Almanac, 2001
electricity generated
by DWP plants
3 coal 50%

1 natural gas 25%

nuclear 12%
7
6
2 hydroelectric 11%
8
green 2%
(solar and landfill gas facilities)

13

4
= 1,270 x
11
5
9

10

metropolitan Los Angeles


12 project site
10.54 quadrillion BTUs/day .0083 quadrillion BTUs/day
power plants
power plants
local power plants 1. Big Creek Hydroelectric System 8. Mojave Generating Station, Nevada
2. Castaic Power Plant 9. Navajo Generating Station, Arizona
3. Columbia River Power System, Oregon 10. Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station, Arizona
energy consumption and sources 4. Harbor Station 11. San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station
natural habitat

5. Haynes Generating Station 12. Scattergood Station


websites:
research

6. Hoover Dam, Nevada 13. Valley Station


factfinder.census.gov (2000 U.S. Census)
Los Angeles Almanac, 2001 7. Intermountain Power Project, Utah
now:
180 1. Nancy Rivera Brooks, “Setting Up a Windmill in County Is Almost Quixotic, Builders Say,” Los Angeles Times, February 11, 2003, sec. C.
2. Penelope Grenoble O’Malley, “Ex-Builder Now Battles ‘Killer Sprawl’,” Los Angeles Times, April 21, 2003, sec. B.

now
1. Los Angeles County’s conservative approval process One homeowner in Acton cut his power bills in half 2. The Nature Conservancy hired E. J. Remson three
is at odds with state law that supports backyard wind by installing three windmills on his five acre property. years ago to create a parkway along the Santa Clara
turbines. Many homeowners and builders complain However, it took him nine months to gain approval River in Ventura County. Using money provided by the
of the regulatory difficulties in installing turbines in from the county. Coastal Conservancy, Remson and his team identify and
backyards. County officials defend their approach as acquire the biological and strategically significant land
they regulate the proliferation of turbines relative to the parcels needed to execute the project. The Nature Con-
density of a region’s population. Turbines are banned servancy’s seeks to find a balance between burgeoning
in the City of San Francisco and other environmentally development and preservation concerns, and to suc-
sensitive areas. cessfully combat what it calls “killer sprawl.”
more than 1,000
400–1,000
100–400

fewer than 100


chances of getting cancer
from toxic air pollution

air pollution
website:
losangelesalmanac.com

number of acres moved 5


10 + acres
100 + acres
1,000 + acres 3
moderate landslide event major landslides
high landslide event La Canada debris flow (1,920 acres),1983 2
1.
agglomeration 2. Portuguese Bend slide (270 acres),1956 4
3. Big Rock Mesa slide (200 acres), 1983
4. Anaheim Hills slide (60 acres), 1993
high ground agglomeration Northridge slides (2,560 acres), 1994
5.

landslides
Michael Dear and Heidi Sommer, eds., Atlas of Southern California, vol. 2
(Los Angeles: Southern California Studies Center, University of Southern California, 1998).

San Andreas fault zone

Santa Suzanna fault zone San Gabriel fault 1


3
Northridge fault
Verdugo fault San Antonio fault
Chatsworth fault 5 Sierra Madre fault zone Stoddard Canyon fault
Hollywood fault
San Fernando fault zone Eagle Rock fault Clamshell-Sawpit Canyon fault
fault line Beverly Hills fault Red-Hill fault
Raymond fault Cucamonga fault
Puente Hills fault San Jacinto fault
Malibu Coast fault
magnitude 1–6 Santa Monica fault SanJose fault
magnitude 6.1–7 Newport-Inglewood fault zone Whittier fault
major earthquakes 4 Chino fault
Los Alamitos fault
magnitude 7.1+ 1. San Juan Capistrano-Wrightwood (7.5), 1812 Peralta Hills fault
Redondo Canyon fault El Mondeno fault
2. Long Beach (6.4), 1933 Ensinore fault zone
agglomeration 3. Sylmar (6.6), 1971
Cabrillo fault Newport-Inglewood-Rose Canyon fault zone
4. Whittier Narrows (5.9), 1987
high ground agglomeration
5. Northridge (6.7), 1994
2

faultlines
Palos Verdes fault zone
natural habitat

websites:
research

geopubs.wr.usgs.gov/fact-sheet/fs110-99
Southern California Earthquake Data Center (scecdc.org)
now:
1. Gary Polakovic, “Smog Fighters Out of Weapons,” Los Angeles Times, July 16, 2003, sec. B. 181
2. Miguel Bustillo, “Californians Are Willing to Pay for Cleaner Air, Poll Finds,” Los Angeles Times, July 10, 2003, sec. B.
3. Usha Lee McFarling, “Major Threat Seen in L.A. Quake Fault,” Los Angeles Times, April 4, 2003, sec. A.

now
1. Supplemental smog-control measures are under 2. Environmental issues and lifestyle preferences have 3. Downtown Los Angeles sits on the Puente Hills
review as California still struggles. Despite vehicular come to a head when it comes to Californians and their system, which has the capacity to be 15 times stronger
regulations controlling smog, other sources emerge attitude toward cleaner air. In a poll taken by the Pub- than the Northridge earthquake. Capable of a 7.5
as culprits. Though vehicular exhaust accounts for lic Policy Institute of California and the Hewlett, Irvine, earthquake, this faultline is more dangerous due to
75% of emissions, household consumer products, and Packard Foundations, Californians will sacrifice the basin’s soft silt and its ability to magnify and orient
including anti-perspirants and perfume, rank sec- for air polllution but not with their vehicles. The big- the energy towards downtown. The ground will thrust
ond. Additional measures range from saving 2 tons of gest culprits are the SUVs owned by smog-concerned upwards between three to eight feet. But the fault can
emissions daily from idling diesel trucks electrically to drivers. remain inert for another 1,000 years.
a 30 cent tax on California processed oil.
47

15 47
29
50
24

32 30 150
50
100

100

145

approximate depth to bedrock 100

actual depth below surface to bedrock


measured via boring 145 125
* approximate depth to bedrock measured in
feet below ground surface

Arts District bedrock level


Amended Little Tokyo Redevelopment Plan
Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles

157

1. numerous drums with unknown contents observed 8


2. underground storage tank observed 6
6 10
3. tank pit and processing equipment observed
4. processing equipment observed 11
6 6
5. possible underground storage tank observed
6. former gasoline service station and industrial site 3
6
7. oil and grease storage 9
8. vista ern site- hydraulic oil spill 2000 4

9. former Lockheed Aircraft Company site


10. former City of Los Angeles auto service repair site
11. former Moline Alley 5
6
6

drilling hole
6

completed oil well 7


1
2

plugged and abandoned dry hole

Arts District site contamination


natural habitat

Amended Little Tokyo Redevelopment Plan


research

Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles

182
20

30

40

50

60

70

80

90

approximate historically highest ground water


contours (measured in feet)

Arts District water table map


Amended Little Tokyo Redevelopment Plan
Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles

L
L

PL

PL

LL

liquefaction zones LL

L liquefiable: ground water to <40 ft. below ground


PL potentially liquefiable: ground water to 40 to 50 ft. below ground
LL low liquefaction potential: ground water to >50 ft. below ground

Arts District liquefaction zone


(liquefaction potential map)
natural habitat

Amended Little Tokyo Redevelopment Plan


research

Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles

183
research
people & culture

184
research
people & culture

185
people and culture
518,296 persons 3,668–10,000 homeless*
500,000

3r
d

ain
201,000 private Skid

M
Row

Alameda
2
nd

400,000

more people sleep


on the streets each night than
the combined capacity of
Los Angeles Cathedral (3,000 seats) and
Walt Disney Concert Hall (2,265 seats)
300,000
* Reports on the number of homeless have varied from a one-night
“official” count of 3,668 by LAHSA to informal estimates of 7-10,000
Downtown
downtown daily
249,734 government homeless population
Donald R. Spivack, History of Skid Row Series, Paper 1,
weingart.org/institute/research/colloquia/pdf/HistoryofSkidRow.pdf
2005 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count
Steve Lopez, Los Angeles Times, Points West
motherjones.com
200,000

40,000 visitors
50

40
100,000
thousands of people

30

20
40,000

23,894 10

3,668
0
Los Angeles
Zoo
Universal
Citywalk

Sea World

downtown

Disneyland
visitors *

workers
residents
homeless

downtown * Based on estimate of


14.6 million per year
downtown daily
daily population visitors population
The Los Angeles Downtown Center Business Improvement District The Downtown Los Angeles Market Report & Demographic Survey Of New Downtown Residents,
research

California Employment Development Department ES202 Data January 2005


The Downtown Los Angeles Market Report & Demographic Survey Of New Downtown Residents, website:
January 2005 themeparkinsider.com
2004 Downtown Economic Overview and Forecast, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation
people & culture

186

Skid Row, also known as Central City East and “The are deaths by overdose and murder. ultimately failed to obtain the prosperity and good life
Nickel” because it centers on Fifth Street, is a 52- The history of this area began as downtown Los An- that Southern California seemingly promised. This at-
block area that houses some of the city’s most desti- geles segued from a predominantly agricultural to an traction was exasperated during the Great Depression.
tute residents. It is the largest skid row in the nation. industrial based economy. With the advent of the rail- In response to the rising population, the area developed
Each night, thousands sleep on the streets in tents and road on Main Street, a large, mostly male, transient an array of Single Resident Occupancy (SRO) hotels and
cardboard boxes, while others are able to take refuge population began arrivng looking for work and their social services to help those in need. In the 1970s, as
in emergency beds managed by a multitude of social future. The area surrouding the railroad station—the part of the urban renewal process, the city devised a
service organizations. Drug use, prostitution, and oth- main entry point to Los Angeles—quickly became a “policy of containment” that defined the boundaries of
er illicit activities are commonplace on the streets, as place of transition, embracing those who sought but Skid Row and concentrated on improving the SRO hous-
23,894 residents 450,734 workers
15,929 households 249,734 goverment
201,000 private
6 out of 10 residents are men 50%

40%

30%

20%
sex
10%

0%
30
L.A. County

wholesale
fire

service

manufacturing
retail

other
downtown
% of population

20

10 residents occupation

0 distribution of business
0–9

10–19

20–29

30–39

40–49

50–59

age
450450

400400

350350
number of employees

50 300300
thousands of workers
LA County

40 250250

200200
% of population

30
Downtown

150150
20
100
100
5050

0 00
white

black

Asian

Latino

2001

2002

2003

2004
1994

1995

1996

1997

1998

1999

2000

0%
1994

1995

1996

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004
race / ethnicity private sector government sector

downtown downtown daily


residential population worker population
The Downtown Los Angeles Market Report & Demographic Survey Of New Downtown Residents, The Downtown Los Angeles Market Report & Demographic Survey Of New Downtown Residents,
research

January 2005 January 2005


website: California Employment Development Dept., Labor Market Information Div. ES202
factfinder.gov (2000 U.S. Census) website:
factfinder.gov (2000 U.S. Census)
people & culture

187

ing stock, stabilizing social services, and encouraging unconfirmed reports of police from other jurisdictions
industrial development within the area. doing the same.
The concentration of development has had the adverse As downtown continues to resurge, the problem of
effect of attracting even more people and making Skid what to do with Skid Row and the homeless population
Row a human dumping ground. Recently released remains one of the most difficult and pressing issues
criminals from the county jail just a few blocks away facing developers and the city.
easily make their way to the Nickel. In late 2005, sev-
eral hospitals admitted to dropping off mentally ill pa-
tients in the area and, over the years, there have been
site

downtown Los Angeles

Pasadena

Los Angeles agglomeration

San Francisco
20 minute walking distance
New York
census track
persons/sq. mi. 0 5,000 10,000 15,000 20,000 25,000
persons/sq. mi.
downtown
1,000

5,000

10,000

15,000

20,000

population density
The Downtown Los Angeles Market Report & Demographic Survey Of New Downtown Residents, January 2005
research

California Employment Development Dept., Labor Market Information Div. ES202


websites:
factfinder.census.gov (2000 U.S. Census)
Los Angeles Almanac, 2001
people & culture

188

Downtown Los Angeles, like many other downtowns, Vital to the continuous “after hours” activity is a slowly
sees an enormous influx of people during the workday. burgeoning residential population. In 2004 (latest
Nearly half a million workers converge daily; more data), 3,500 units were under construction; almost
than half are government employees. In the evenings 5,000 were permitted or planned. A recent survey con-
the streets are sparse, but that has begun to change. ducted by the DCBID reveals the demographics of the
All neighborhoods throughout downtown are experi- newest residential developments (market rate and af-
encing an explosion of development. fordable). Occupants are generally young, white, pro-
New cultural, commercial, and entertainment venues fessional, and have high incomes—the median house-
attract diverse visitors at all times of day. An estimat- hold income is $90,000; nearly half work downtown.
ed 14.6 million people visit downtown each year.
Burbank
Pasadena
Pasadena
Hollywood Beverly Silver
Hills Lake
Latino population West
10
white population 10
Adams
(17,500 people) m
ileMontebello (10,300 people) Olympic
m
ile
ra Palms ra
di Village diu
us s
Inglewood

Lynwood

Pasadena Glendale
Pasadena
Hollywood
Hollywood
African American population Asian population Monterey
10 10
(6,600 people) Palms m
ile (6,400 people) m
ile
Park
ra ra
diu d iu
Florence s s

Compton

persons/sq. mi.

population density
1,000

5,000

10,000

15,000

20,000

by ethnicity
The Downtown Los Angeles Market Report & Demographic Survey Of New Downtown Residents, January 2005
research

California Employment Development Dept., Labor Market Information Div. ES202


websites:
factfinder.census.gov (2000 U.S. Census)
scag.ca.gov
people & culture

189

downtown residents: 53.8% males

49.8% between the ages of 23 and 34 56.8% single

46.1% work downtown 50.5% executives and professionals

57.9% Caucasian 11.0% writers/artists/entertainers

17.1% Asian/Pacific Islander 15.3% students


Oshogatsu Festival – Celebrating Japanese New Year
Los Angeles County $43,066
Downtown on Ice, Winter Wonderland
January
South Los Angeles $29,169
East Los Angeles-Eagle Rock $33,358 Chinese New Year Festival
Antelope Valley $33,358 Dinosaur Day
Santa Clara/Valencia $33,453 Symphony for Youth, the Evolution of the Orchestra
North Gateway $35,507 Feburary
San Gabriel Valley $36,543
Long Beach/Lakewood S Gateway $39,102
Crenshaw/Mid-City/Hollywood $43,192
March
West San Fernardo Valley $43,828
East San Fernardo Valley $45,234
South Bay/LAX $45,143
central/downtown Los Angeles $52,332
April
West Los Angeles $57,086 Pershing Square Summer Concert Series
Blue Four Festival, Queer History Festival Asian & Pacific Islander Older
20K 30K 40K 50K 60K Adult Festival
Family FunFest and annual Kodomo-no-Hi, Children’s Day Celebration
Performing Arts Concert Series, Very Special Arts Festival
average annual wage
May Cinco de Mayo Celebration
Grand Performances
Pershing Square Summer Concert Series
Los Angeles Kids Read Festival
<$150K 4%
ArtWallah Festival of South Asian Arts
$100K–$150K 6%
Macy’s Plaza Presents Kid’s Club
$75K–$100K 8%
June
$50K–$75K 13%
$35K–$50K 14%
Shakespeare in the Square, Los Angeles’s Romeo and Juliet
Grand Performances
$25K–$35K 7%
Pershing Square Summer Concert Series
0-25K 48% Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival

July
0 10 20 30 40
ALSO SWISS Arts Festival
percentage of households
Los Angeles Tofu Festival
household income Pershing Square Summer Concert Series
Grand Performances
August
Grand Performances
Pershing Square Summer Concert Series
Los Angeles County
downtown L.A.
thousands $

September
Grand Performances

October
Feria de Los Ninos Festival, Los Angeles Mariachi Festival
Downtown on Ice, Winter Wonderland Outdoor Skating Rink
November
per capita
income
households

families

Downtown on Ice, Winter Wonderland Outdoor Skating Rink


December
downtown
income $ festival and events, 2003
websites: websites:
research

downtownla.com downtownla.com
artscenecal.com artscenecal.com
csun.edu csun.edu
usc.edu/dept/geography/losangeles usc.edu/dept/geography/losangeles
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190

L.A. Live is a 4 million square foot, multi-billion dollar Mayor Villaraigosa has called complex’s four star, 50- Other components of the L.A. Live complex will include
sports and entertainment complex under development story, 1,100-room Convention Center hotel the linch- a 40,000 square foot outdoor plaza; ESPN broadcast
in downtown Los Angeles, adjoining the Staples Center pin of downtown’s revitalization. The city hopes that and restaurant facilities; a 14-screen cineplex; a 2,200
and the Convention Center. Anschutz Entertainment the hotel, estimated at $600 million, will bring signifi- capacity live music venue; a 7,100-seat state-of-the-art
Group (AEG), the company that owns the Staples Cen- cant business to the ailing Convention Center and has live theater; and other entertainment, restaurant, resi-
ter, is developing the complex with additional private offered nearly $300 million in public financing, includ- dential, retail, and office spaces.
partners and public financing. The complex will be ing a loan, tax breaks, and fee waivers.
built on 28 acres of parking lots surrounding Staples
Center. The first phase of the project broke ground in
September 2005, and construction is estimated to be
complete by 2014.
theaters educational institutions

museums sports and recreation centers

galleries religious institutions

civic centers

20 minute walking distance

cultural institutions
websites:
research

Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map


downtownla.com
artscenecal.com
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191
20 minute walking distance

1 Dodger Stadium
2 Ahmanson Theater
3 Mark Taper Forum
4 Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
5 Walt Disney Concert Hall
6 Laemmle Grande
7 East-West Players
8 Japanese American Cultural
and Community Center
9 Million Dollar Theater
10 Los Angeles Theatre Center
11 Palace Theater
12 Lowe’s State Theater
13 Orpheum Theater
14 Shrine Auditorium
15 Imax Theater

4
3

6 5

9
10
8

11
12
theaters and concert venues
websites:
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Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map 13


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14

15
20 minutes walking distance

1 The Brewery Arts Colony


2 MOCA Grand Avenue
3 MOCA Geffen Contemporary
4 Japanese American National Museum
5 Museum of Science and Industry
6 Natural History Museum
7 California African American Museum
8 California Science Center
9 INMO Gallery
10 China Art Objects
11 Instituto Cultural Mexicano
12 El Pueblo Gallery
13 Wells Fargo History Museum
14 Los Angeles Artcore Center
15 4th St. Gallery
16 Art Share
17 The Project
18 Cirrus
19 Gallery 835
20 Museum of Neon Art
21 Lindhurst Gallery

9 1

10

11
13 12

14
4
16

museums and galleries 21


17
websites: 20
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19 18
Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map
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22

5
6
7
8
1

20 minute walking distance

1 primary
2
2 primary
3 primary
3
4 primary
4
5 primary
5
6 secondary 6
7 primary
8 primary
9 primary 7
10 secondary
11 primary
12 primary
8
13 secondary
14 secondary
15 Evans Community Adult School 9

16 secondary
17 secondary
18 Colburn School of Performing Arts
19 primary
20 primary
21 Golden Gate University
10
22 Los Angeles City College
23 primary
24 primary
11
25 primary 13
12
26 primary
27 SCI-Arc 16 15
14
28 secondary
29 primary 17
30 Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising
19
31 Loyola Law School
32 primary
18
33 secondary
34 Mount St. Mary’s College
35 Los Angeles Trade Tech College
20 23
36 University of Southern California
22
37 primary
38 primary
31 21

32
24

educational institutions 30 27

websites:
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Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map


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artscenecal.com 25
csun.edu
usc.edu/dept/geography/losangeles
people & culture

33
194 29

28

36
26
34

35
37

38
20 minute walking distance

1 Cypress Park Branch Library


2 La Biblioteca de Lincoln Heights
3 Los Angeles Police Academy
4 Chavez Ravine Arboretum
5 U.S. Naval Reserve/Armory 1
6 Echo Park Branch Library
7 Chinatown Branch Library
8 Los Angeles County Jail
9 Metropolitan Transit Authority
10 Metropolitan Detention Center
11 Federal Building 3

12 Los Angeles Police Department


Parker Center
13 Federal Courthouse
14 Hall of Justice 4
15 Hall of Records
2
16 Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration
17 Department of Water and Power
18 county courts
19 law library
20 City Hall
5
21 Caltrans District 7 Headquarters
6
22 (new) Los Angeles Police headquarters
23 state offices
24 Central Library
25 Ronald Reagan State Building
26 Central Police Station

17 8
16
15
18
14 9
13
19
23 10
20 12 11
22
24 21
25

26

civic institutions
websites:
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Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map


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1

20 minute walking distance

1 Elysian Valley Recreation Center


2 Cypress Recreation Center
3 Montecito del Lio Politti
4 Elysian Park Therapeutic Recreation
5 Los Angeles Youth Athletic Club Center 2
6 Dodger Stadium
3
7 Alpine Recreation Center
8 YMCA
9 Staples Center
10 recreation center
11 recreation center
12 recreation center 4

13 Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum


The Staples Center in downtown Los
Angeles is a multipurpose, state-of-the- 5
art sports arena that also hosts enter-
tainment events, concerts, and awards
shows, including the Grammys. The are-
na is located adjacent to the Los Angeles
Convention Center complex, near the
intersection of the 10 and 110 Freeways.
With the nearby Pico Metro Rail Station
6
on the Blue Line, many Metro bus routes,
and 8,900 parking spaces within four city
blocks, the arena is easily accessible by
car and public transit.

Designed by the architecture firm NBBJ,


the 950,000 square foot, 20,000-seat
arena was completed in 1999 at a cost
of $375 million. Staples, the office-sup-
ply chain, paid $100,000,000 for twenty
years of naming rights. Owned and oper-
ated by Anschutz Entertainment Group
(AEG), the Staples Center is part of the
planned 4-million square foot L.A. Live
entertainment, retail, and residential de- 7
velopment.

The Staples Center is the home of five


professional sports franchises: the NBA’s
Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles
Clippers, the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings,
the AFL’s Los Angeles Avengers, and the
WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks.

In 2003 the city controller released a re-


port that declares the Staples Center a
successful and positive contributor to
both the South Park business and to the
city. The city receives more than $3 mil-
lion annually from business generated by 8
the Staples Center.

10

sports centers 9
website:
research

Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map


downtownla.com
artscenecal.com
csun.edu
usc.edu/dept/geography/losangeles
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196

12

11
13
20 min walking distance

1 Sung Ji Korean Baptist Church


1
2 Khandakapala Buddhist Temple
2
3 Brosnan John St. Ann Catholic Church
4 Unity Church of Truth
5 San Conrado Catholic Mission 3 3
6 Golden West Christian Church
7. Ukranian Orthodox Church of St. Andrew
8 Holy Hill Community Church
9 Chinese Catholic Church
10 St. Peter
4
11 First Chinese Baptist Church 4
12 Chinese United Methodist Church
6
13 Croatian St. Anthony Catholic Church 5
14 Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels 7
15 Mission Church
16 Higashi Honganji Buddhist Temple
17 Japanese Catholic Center
18 St. Vibiana’s
19 United Church

9 10

11
8

12
13

14 15

18

16
17

religious institutions
website: 19
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Automobile Club of Southern California Street Map


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197