On Tuesday, March 7, Los Angeles residents will vote on Measure S: a controversial proposal aimed at reforming the planning system by ceasing certain developments until particular changes to the code are made. In the interest of conveying the complexity of Measure S, and exploring its potential implications for a future Los Angeles urbanism, The LA Forum for Architecture and Urban Design interviewed two planning professionals: Alan Loomis, Deputy Director for Urban Design & Mobility at City of Glendale, and Richard Platkin, a former LA City Planner now teaching at USC.
The Downtown Mobility Report Card seeks to better understand the impacts of the Downtown Specific Plan and Mobility Study through tangible outcomes and metrics. The findings of the Report Card creates benchmarks for the City to track mobility trends over time, and offer recommendations for improving data availability.
It’s January in a new year and so it’s back to school. As I have for the past ten years, I will be teaching Urban Design Theory at Woodbury University School of Architecture. Programmed as a “study aboard” course at home, students will document, investigate, analyze and map a district in greater Los Angeles as a means of illustrating their understanding of the themes, issues, trends and urban design theories outlined in the lectures and readings. This year my fourth year students and I will be examining North Hollywood, Downtown Burbank, Downtown Santa Monica in addition to the Arts District and South Park districts of Downtown Los Angeles.
Glendale Connected is a proposal advanced by the City of Glendale for a series of regional transit routes that individually and collectively integrate Glendale into the larger regional transit system and link the City to nearby destinations such as Burbank Airport, Union Station, Pasadena and the Media Center.
“‘The erosion of Exposition Park’s public open space continues.’ So wrote urban planner Alan Loomis nearly 15 years ago, in an essay published by the Los Angeles Forum for Architecture and Urban Design.” LA Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne leads off with this quote in his evaluation of the proposed Lucas Museum of Narrative Art. Reading Hawthorne’s essay is a case of deja vu all over again.
“Being in city government is exciting in that you have the opportunity to invent projects. You can see a need or opportunity to fix a problem, figure out how you approach that problem, and then craft a project around it.” – Looking back the projects completed and initiatives started in 2016.
Last month Glendale launched its new pedestrian safety campaign, “Be Street Smart Glendale.” This program consists of three components: the Safety Education Initiative, Safe Routes to Schools, and Citywide Pedestrian Plan. Glendale residents and visitors will start seeing “Be Street Smart Glendale” branding in various locations throughout the city. GTV6 produced a short video to introduce the program.
This course surveyed affordable housing programs and projects around Southern California, as a means of illustrating how certain urban policies and financing tools can result in very specific architectural outcomes.
Glendale’s first Green Streets Project is the result of a competitive Proposition 84 Urban Greening Project Grant application. Funding from this grant offers the City its first opportunity to combine multi-modal infrastructure improvements with enhancements to water quality and stormwater management.
Commentary on the LA Forum’s Dingbat 2.0 competition, written for the publication: Dingbat 2.0: The Iconic Los Angeles Apartment as Projection of a Metropolis
I am pleased to be associated as a contributing author to the recent publication Dingbat 2.0: The Iconic Los Angeles Apartment as Projection of a Metropolis from DoppelHouse Press and the Los Angeles Forum for Architecture and Urban Design. Join me and other authors at the launch party for the book: Saturday, April 30, 2016 Jai & Jai Gallery in Chinatown 648 North Spring Street, Los Angeles 90012 6pm to 9pm
Space 134 has been trending in the local media since we presented the latest vision plan to City Council on March 1, 2016.
“Being in city government is exciting is that you have the opportunity to invent projects. You can see a need or opportunity to fix a problem, figure out how you approach that problem, and then craft a project around it.” Discussing urban design in the public realm on Archinect’s One-to-One Podcasts
The Museum of Neon Art (MONA), adjacent mid-block pedestrian paseo and the beautification of the parallel alley and parking lot represents the first phase of the Central Park Master Plan.
Patience is a necessary character trait for the urban designer, as it can take many years, if not decades, for your plans to be realized. 2015, however, was the year in which many of the elements in the plan we proposed for downtown Glendale came to started to come together. Plans do come to fruition.
In a short ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday December 9, Glendale officially opened the mid-block paseo adjacent the Museum of Neon Art connecting Brand Boulevard and the Central Park, completing the first phase of the Central Park Master Plan.
As Principal Urban Designer for the City of Glendale, from 2005 to 2015 Alan Loomis was responsible for design review of approximately 5000 units of urban housing and over 750,000sf of commercial space, providing design direction to architects through submittal process.
The California Chapter of the American Planning Association recognized Glendale on October 4 during their 2015 Annual Conference in Oakland. The honor, an Implementation Award (Large Jurisdiction), recognizes the past ten years of planning in Glendale’s Downtown.
The Pedestrian Safety Campaign will focus on improving pedestrian safety in Glendale through a continuing education program teaching residents the proper rules of the road for every transportation mode, creating and promoting events that will promote safe walking and bicycling, and launching an awareness campaign through a variety of media sources.
The Citywide Pedestrian Plan, funded by a Caltrans Active Transportation Program (ATP) grant, will consolidate existing pedestrian policies, recommend new policies, identify viable pedestrian corridors, assess intersections with high pedestrian/bicycle accident rates, and recommend improvements and programs through an action plan.
This course will illustrate how certain urban policy goals and regulations can result in very specific architectural outcomes, by investigating Pasadena’s pioneering “City of Gardens Ordinance.”
The South Glendale Community Plan is the second in a series of comprehensive plans for Glendale, and will address the urbanized heart of the City south of the 134 Freeway.
Glendale’s Small Lot Ordinance aims to encourage development of infill lots and preserve units with historic character in order to catalyze neighborhood investment, provide greater housing choice and expand the opportunities for affordable home ownership.
The Los Angeles Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA) recognized the City of Glendale with the Implementation Award of Excellence for the Glendale Downtown Specific Plan (DSP) & Mobility Study.
Patrick Healy of NBC4 News profiled the “freeway cap park” movement in Southern California on the 6 o’clock news yesterday. He and I spent some time discussing Glendale’s Space 134 project.