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Smart Growth and Riding the Bus

[Grand Avenue study models via arcspace]

We caught a bit of Warren Olney's Which Way LA last night, where Smart Growth and Public Transportation were discussed. Among the luminaries featured were Curbed Ugliest Building Contest Judge Alissa Walker (also of Unbeige), the President of Related Companies Bill Witte, LA Weekly's David Zahniser, and political mastermind Eric Garcetti (CD13). All were in agreement that "smart growth" often gets lip service, and what typically gets produced just aggravates our existing traffic problems. Stupid developers.

As Warren explains it, "smart growth" combines retail and housing in big buildings near transit. Nice job Warren, we went to school for two years to learn that. David Zahniser explains that the City's bus system is generally unpleasant and slow, and development based on adjacency to bus routes is dumb. Bill Witte notes that density is being concentrated in some areas within the City, and this is part of the smart growth movement. However, he notes that there are no real incentives for people to use mass transit yet. Eric Garcetti, a proponent of all things good, says we need to plan for the continuing population growth of Los Angeles, and not preparing for it through increased density will doom us all. He also highlights the friendly sidewalks of Hollywood and the possible need for dedicated busways on streets in LA. Garcetti concludes that what we need are less horses and more Trojans, or something like that. That's what our notes say.
· Is Smart Growth a Dumb Idea for Los Angeles? [KCRW]
· Peddling Smart Growth [LA Weekly]