Friday, March 18, 2011

Driving Green: LA flush with freeway cap park proposals

Plans to develop four so-called freeway cap parks have recently been announced in Los Angeles. The cap concept, which essentially covers a portion of a freeway with a planted concrete lid, has gained popularity in the last decade as an urban “greening” solution. The multibillion-dollar projects are meant to knit together previously disparate neighborhoods, theoretically creating cohesion and larger-scale community gathering places without having to destroy or displace existing infrastructures.
The four projects are spread across Hollywood, downtown LA, and Santa Monica. Hollywood Central Park would be built atop the 101 Freeway on a proposed 44-acre site between Santa Monica Boulevard and Bronson Avenue. Park 101 would be built atop the “Big Trench” over the 101 Freeway downtown. Santa Monica is hoping to cap portions of the 10 Freeway between Ocean Avenue and 4th Street, and between 14th and 17th streets, creating five- and seven-acre parks.
The cap park frenzy here can largely be credited to Don Scott, an investment banker and former chairman of the Hollywood Central Park coalition, also former chairman of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. Scott said that his inspiration for the Hollywood Central Park cap came from an article he read about Boston’s Big Dig. “I remember driving over the Hollywood freeway and thinking about the connection between the two environments.”

more about LA:

The LA City Bike Plan: Addressing Equity and Low-Income Folks’ Needs

The Invisible Cyclists: Immigrants and the Bike Community

Integration of landscape fragmentation analysis into regional planning: A statewide multi-scale case study from California, USA

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