Here are the original 18 goals of the Wilshire Center/Koreatown Redevelopment Area passed by the City Council in 1995. Getting to know these goals in greater depth will be helpful as we begin to envision and plan more for the next five years.
WILSHIRE CENTER/KOREATOWN REDEVELOPMENT AREA PROJECT GOALS
1. Eliminate and prevent the spread of blight and deterioration in accordance with the Redevelopment Plan.
2. Encourage the involvement and participation of property owners, residents, business persons, religious and community organizations to meet the diverse needs.
3. Promote the economic, social, educational and cultural and physical well-being through the revitalization of the residential, commercial and industrial areas.
4. Promote the livability of the Project Area as a cohesive and sustainable neighborhood.
5. Encourage the development of housing in a wide range of types, prices, rent levels and ownership options.
6. Enhance the safety and security of residents, businesses, employees and visitors.
7. Encourage the employment of Project Area residents [in the Project Area].
8. Promote educational and job training opportunities for Project Area residents by working with the LAUSD, public and private employers and institutions.
9. Provide for an efficient circulation system coordinated with land uses and densities and adequate to accommodate traffic. Also, encourage improvement of public transit services in coordination with other public transportation.
10. Promote programs that recognize and support the diverse cultures.
11. Provide additional open space and recreational activities and facilities.
12. Enhance and beautify the major thoroughfares, particularly the north/south streets that link the freeways.
13. Promote and encourage artists, crafts people and entertainers to live and work within the Project Area.
14. Develop a cultural and entertainment district to establish a regional identity for a significant commercial, retail, and residential center.
15. Preserve historical buildings and monuments, where feasible.
16. Establish sign standards and controls to avoid clutter and communicate a sense of hospitality.
17. Coordinate the revitalization efforts and take advantage of other programs in the City of Los Angeles and other local, state and federal agencies.
18. Promote and encourage the development of bicycle-friendly streets and a full range of amenities, where feasible.
Below Are Additional Thoughts
By Gary Russell, AIA, Chair of Urban Design Committee
The following comments may help move the redevelopment process forward and represent the interest of the Community.
Using the 1994 original 18 goals should be a foundation to build our future. At the same time that we ask the City to fill the potholes, solve the traffic congestion, deal with the details, and yes, solving one problem at a time is important but we need to also begin the remaking our community, making of our future, looking at the big picture and the interconnections of the details and problems. We need to start thinking big, creating the vision for our future.
"…must have a vision for the future and a plan for getting us there." Councilmember Antonio Villaraigosa,
"…shared vision that provides a strategic framework for imagining, analyzing, judging, and implementing each step along the way." Urban Land Institute
"Reaching a shared vision requires facing the tough questions upfront, making sure everyone understands the realities of the situation, and setting short-, medium-,and long-range goals that are realistically attainable." Urban Land Institute
"Why Vision? Size and significance are not automatic guarantees of continued prosperity. There is great power here to achieve a more sustainable community and more livable community as part of it if we can align our energies in support of a commonly shared vision. The key is to understand what this Community would look like and how it would function if a set of growth principles were to be broadly applied in shaping the future. If a desirable outcome can be defined, then the steps to get there can be embraced by any public or private agent of change who endorses the vision." Southern California Association of Government
So, how do we begin to act in concert within the community in creating a Vision? We start by exercising leadership. CAC has stepped forward to begin the process by approving a "Vision and Strategy Discussion" program last spring. We then use the structure of key "players" to explore the possibilities and develop the necessary information. We need to proceed wisely; to benefit from the experience of others while acknowledging our special community characteristics and challenges. With the principles (the 18 goals) originally stated in 1995 by the CAC we move to look at expanding, refining and debating and applying in different combinations in scenarios for the Community's future. We now have a set of principles/goals to use, through the work of the Vision and Strategy Discussion process. An element of the process is to refine the Principles/Goals through a series of "feedback loops" between CAC and the other community stakeholders. At the same time, growth related data will be compiled and put in a form that can be easily understood. With this in hand we investigate the issues and recommend ways to achieve our aspirations. Then we state the Vision for our community. This allows us to go on to the second step
Step two, the framework, is a list of goals; objectives and policies that will help people make the community vision a reality. We have a beginning with the existing 18 goals. We need to include agreement on the things we all value in our community and believe are important to preserve and protect. It will not only document these values, it will provide recommendations on the things we can do if we want to change our future. Then we move on to the third step.
Step three, the action plan, the strategy, is a detailed list of specific tasks that must be carried out in order to achieve the objectives that have been agreed upon in the framework. The action plan will provide citizens, government, and neighborhood and community groups with specific direction regarding things they can and need to do in order to make the vision a reality. The action plan will also provide the basis for evaluating our progress in achieving the vision. The fourth step then follows.
Step four, the benchmarks, is specific "measurements" that describe important characteristics of our community. For instance, the average duration of a commute to work, the average amount of open space area per person, average family income, or number of years of school attained is all examples of benchmarks. Taken together, these can provide a picture of our community's "health" at a given point in time. From that point forward, they can be used to gauge if our community's health is getting better, worse, or staying the same.
Creating a shared vision and strategy which is created by the community stakeholders, we get a plan that the community stakeholders can buy into that is a living plan and not another document that sits on the shelf.