I’m joining PlaceWorks as Principal of Urban Design. I’ll be responsible for growing the firm’s urban design practice from the Los Angeles office while also playing a key role in marquee projects throughout California. After 15 years of practicing urban design in the public sector, I’m looking forward to applying the knowledge and experience I’ve gained in Santa Monica, Glendale and Pasadena to a wider range of communities in California.
State Senate Bill (SB) 827 would densify housing along transit; Alan Loomis explains the debate for the Los Angeles Forum for Architecture and Urban Design.
Archinect hosted their 5th Next Up podcasting event at the inaugural Arroyo Seco Weekend festival inside Bureau Spectacular’s “Field House.” Conversations focused on temporary architecture, installations, festival design and planning, and the festival’s host city of Pasadena, CA. Archinect spoke with me about the current state of urban planning as a profession, my experience of working in different parts of LA County and the evolving architectural identity of Pasadena.
After a $15 million renovation, the Glendale Central Library re-opened to the public this past Monday, May 1. Originally designed by Welton Becket Associates in 1973, the renovation by Gruen Associates modernizes the Library’s technology infrastructure for the 21st century. The renovation is also part of a multi-phased strategy to redevelop the Central Park, bringing both the Library and Park into a the urban design framework of the Downtown as a whole.
I am excited to announce that I will be joining Santa Monica as their new City Urban Designer beginning in April. Santa Monica’s outstanding commitment to urban design is an opportunity too compelling to ignore – I am honored that the City has challenged me to expand this reputation and legacy.
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.
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.
“‘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.
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
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.
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 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.
The Glendale Community Development Department received the Distinguished Leadership Award for a Planning Agency from the California Chapter of the American Planning Association at the annual conference in Anaheim.
Fronting for UNIQLO, or how Godzilla inspired me to make great cities.
Glendale’s local TV channel, GTV6, asked me to talk about Space 134, our plan to cover the 134 Freeway with a series of parks. This is the result.
This week Hal Eisner interviewed me about “Space 134,” a concept to build a series of parks over the 134 Freeway as it cuts across the middle of Glendale.
Last week the Glendale City Council approved two mixed-use projects, each located at significant infill sites within the city’s urban centers. The Triangle will anchor the Tropico Station district surrounding the Glendale Metrolink/Amtrak stop. The second will fill a vacant lot and chronic hole in the middle of the Brand Boulevard downtown retail district.
“Consuming the City,” my editorial to the Winter 2002/2003 LA Forum Online Newsletter on Shopping, was featured in Unfinished Business: 25 Years of Discourse in Los Angeles.
“We are challenging the architects who work here to produce better work than they might have been accustomed to when they came to Glendale five or ten years ago,” said Loomis. “We’re trying to push Glendale into that echelon of cities like West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Pasadena, where architects want to do their best work.”