Submitted by Charissa Chan, Jacqueline Nguyen, Alondra Rodriguez & Ruby Sanchez, Cal Poly Pomona Architecture
The park will focus on catering to the needs of the locals, providing entertainment, leisure, shopping and dining facilities. Our primary goal is to attract the residents that live in close range to the site. By making a park that primarily responds to the needs of the local community, the park should then also serve visitors and the high number of government workers that live in the area.
Downtown Los Angeles is remarkably diverse, and is an area that is constantly changing. Housing types range from low-income weekly hotels to expensive lofts. The area has a large number of homeless, but also has a number of wealthy residents. Restaurants vary from inexpensive food trucks or food courts/ market stalls to expensive 4-star restaurants. Entertainment varies from operas, to movies, to street performers. Shopping varies from small kiosk boutiques to department stores. There are many local artists and nationally acclaimed museums. The fabric of downtown is defined by the diversity of its population and establishments.
The increase in housing around the site points to a need for more public interactive spaces. From interviews with locals and our observations of the site, we came to the conclusion that we should provide a space that will attract a greater diversity of patrons. We discovered that lower-class housing and ?popular? shopping areas have a high street usage and livelier atmosphere than the wealthy ?loft? areas. From our interviews we discovered that wealthy ?loft? dwellers tend to leave downtown for leisure activities, while the lower-income community stays in downtown.
Every group/class/ethnicity within downtown is looking for something different, but the areas that appear to be most successful are those that provide ?populist? forms of entertainment and shopping. Given the diversity of city residents we have divided the space into four main areas: art, food, shopping and entertainment. All inhabitants will use the various sections, but each was designed with a specific group in mind like Olvera Street and Broadway. The success of the park will depend on attracting interest by those who reside outside the community. In order for a park to be successful it needs to be able to adapt to the changing needs of the community and be popular with locals, which will in turn draw outsiders to the area.