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Curbed Cup Round 1: Civic Center (8) vs. Culver City (9)

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Here it is: the 2012 Curbed Cup race for the Los Angeles Neighborhood of the Year. Round one of our tournament features 16 'hoods vying for the coveted golden jpeg--we'll have two matchups every day through Thursday, then take a look at our tournament bracket on Friday. Voting for each poll ends 24 hours after opening (and will be watched closely for any shenanigans). Let the neighborhood on neighborhood carnage begin!

Most of the big action in the Civic Center this year was dirt and/or greenery related--we've just now heard that Skidmore, Owings & Merrill will finally fill up the weedy lot at First and Broadway with a new federal courthouse; the huge new Grand Park opened and quickly became LA's town square; that park could annex a former home to feral cats at First and Broadway; the City Hall park reopened with lots of new native plantings (and some rather restrictive rules); the area got even more bike lanes; and the LAPD may have even finally figured out its dying park problem.

The Expo Line opened this year with a phase one terminus in Culver City, and that's where almost all of the action in the city has sprung from. Demo work has already started at the Expo-adjacent Legado Crossing mixed-user and is set to start soon at retail project The Platform. The NMS@Culver City mixed-use project (not technically CC, but we're calling it close enough) broke ground this year and two big-deal architecture firms moved into new homes in the city (Clive Wilkinson Architects, which brings fancy coffee with it, and Morphosis). Plus culture as always in Culver: Frank Gehry will be designing a new permanent home for the Jazz Bakery and the Wende Cold War museum is moving into an old National Guard armory. Oh, and there's also that 94-foot-tall rainbow.

Poll results