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Guess What Will Occupy the City Hall Park Next

LANDSCAPING PROPOSALS TAKING ROOT - The folks from LA’s Rec and Parks Department introduced three landscaping options for the City Hall yard this week … resulting in mixed returns. Sustainability was the theme with all the offerings … some requiring more watering than others and each with a different maintenance cost price tag.
Here’s Emily Green’s report … suggesting the better of the landscaping proposals was the ‘fourth option’

Choices are best understood by those who make them. In the case of the decision about where to unveil schematic drawings of what new landscaping around Los Angeles City Hall might look like after last year’s Occupation, it may only be comprehensible to city hall’s caretakers at the Department of Recreation and Parks.

Choosing last night’s meeting of the Los Angeles Downtown Neighborhood Council was, procedurally, rather like the federal government unveiling new plans for the White House grounds at a meeting of a DC neighborhood association.

LA supports 15 council districts [link] and an estimated 90-plus neighborhood councils. [link] An internationally recognizable symbol for most of the city’s 500 square mile reach could be a gushing lawn sprinkler.

Depending on the location from cool coastal spots to hot valleys and foothills, from 40 to 70 per cent of our largely imported water is used outdoors. How fast and how seriously Los Angeles embraces water conservation is integral to the ultimate success of the city in the coming era of population growth and climate change.

If there is a single community that has the least understanding and the least at stake to do with landscape reform, it is the loft and apartment dwellers who comprise the Downtown Neighborhood Council. They live in one of the rare corners of the city free of what Joni Mitchell described as “the hissing of summer lawns.” One joked last night about attendees from the San Fernando Valley needing a passport.  (The rest of Emily Green’s account here)
And Haley Fox posted this take at BlogDowntown.com.

The Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks presented the public with three options for the future of the City Hall lawn, at an overflowing Downtown Neighborhood Council meeting last night.

The options aren't final but they may be good starting points for gauging community response to plans for the lawn's walkways, foliage and iconic preservation.

All three choices include a similar plan for the north side of the park, that includes a low water nature garden with drought resistant plants. Where the choices drastically differ is in the reconstruction of the south side of the park, the landmark grassy knoll that has served as a public forum and gathering space. Farmers markets, concerts, people on their lunch break and most recently, the Occupy LA protesters, have all utilized this space. (The rest of Hayley Fox on City Hall landscaping options here)


Tags: City Hall, City Hall landscaping, City Hall lawn, Occupy LA

Vol 10 Issue 4
Pub: Jan 13, 2012