Grand Intervention: Sparking Engagement

Grand Avenue Intervention:
Submission Gallery

Sparking Engagement with Downtown Los Angeles 

Submitted by Amy Altomare, Jasmine Evains, Ryan Fowler, Sergio Ibarra, Kim Newstadt, and Jason Neville

Located within blocks of world-class cultural institutions, nestled between diverse neighborhoods and working class commercial districts, and at the hub of the region?s transit network, the barren space currently occupied by the civic plaza has the unique opportunity to become a space that connects, integrates and engages the diverse people, events and places of Los Angeles.

Our plan is more than just a redesign of spaces; our goal is to facilitate the active engagement of Angelenos with their participation, activity, or simply their presence.

The civic park becomes a Dynamic and Diverse Space for nighttime as well as daytime uses with Opportunities for activity as well as solace.

The Civic Park as an Ephemeral Space
The lawn as an ephemeral space provides a broad array of options. Instead of a barren lawn, the space becomes a blank canvas. The ample seating space would be ideal for a night of movies or concerts in the park. During the day, the space would serve as a recreational field.

Social Engagement
Shopping and dining are crucial to luring patrons to the civic park. The welcoming expanse of the civic plaza is ideal for food kiosks, farmer?s markets, and swap meets.

Art as a Community-Building Tool
Semiannual public art competitions will encourage artists to create cutting edge interactive works of public art. Our goal is for the public art to engage the community in the process of creation and with the art itself. An artistic community of interest will strengthen the community of the space. With education as a primary focus, outreach initiatives will help visitors to make unique connections with the art and the space.

Public Space as a Requisite of a Functioning Democracy
The open plaza of the Civic Plaza serves as a multi-use public space, able to accommodate large gatherings, yet comfortable for everyday usage, and designed as a transit node for full integration.

Conclusion
?Good environments are not designed but evolve and are only part of a comprehensive and integrated community development strategy. . . . Multidisciplinary linkages are needed to integrate physical, social, economic, environmental and political concerns. . .? (Sherri Blake, Time Saver Standards for Urban Design)

And good environments are necessary to empower citizens to shape their own futures democratically.