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With LAPD Gone, What Will Become of Welton Becket's Parker Center?

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In all the excitement over the fancy new LAPD headquarters, set to open this weekend, everyone sort of forgot about the Parker Center, the LAPD's soon-to-be former home. The City Council is just getting around now to figuring out what to do with the 1955 Welton Becket building--the Downtown News reports that the Board of Public Works is expected to approve a consulting contract in the next few weeks for Tetra Design to prepare an environmental impact report evaluating options for Parker.

The city's Municipal Services Committee has suggested five options to be evaluated in the EIR:

1. Adaptive reuse
2. Partial demolition and renovation
3. Total demolition, replacement with a parking lot
4. Demolition, replacement with a million square foot building and 500 parking spaces
5. Demolition, replacement with a million square foot building and 1,000 parking spaces

So the stats are on the side of the wrecking ball. The building needs seismic retrofits, and the LAPD gently says a 1990s analysis found it "had reached its service life." Downtown News notes that an empty lot where the Parker Center once was would join downtown dead zones just west of City Hall, a downed office tower plot; the "massive hole at First Street and Broadway" made for a stalled federal courthouse; and the darkened County Hall of Justice.

Earlier, the LA Daily News reported on what cops will miss about their old HQ, including "the scent of unburned confiscated marijuana that sometimes wafts up from the downstairs evidence room after a productive weekend for the narcotics squad." Aw.

The city has allocated $1 million for the Parker Center's EIR, which is expected to be completed in June 2011. [Image via USC Geography]
· What's Next For Parker Center? [Downtown News]
· Cops say they'll miss old building [LADN]
· Inside Downtown's New LAPD Headquarters [Curbed LA]

Parker Center

150 North Los Angeles Street, , CA 90012 Visit Website