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Curbed Cup Round 1: Historic Core (3) vs. Boyle Heights (14)

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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!

The Historic Core is the two-time Curbed Cup juggernaut that can't stop gentrifying (A damn Starbucks!) and 2012 saw the usual glut of adaptive reuse projects, new development, and restaurant openings, but really this was Broadway's year. The street has long been the laggard in the fancifying of the HC, but it's almost hard to believe how action-packed it was this year. The Downtown Streetcar, which will run along the street, is moving ahead; Clifton's Brookdale is getting a hipster rehab; four historic theaters are getting nightlife-friendly makeovers; work is underway at LA's first Ace hotel; Umamicatessen opened; and there's rumormongering about an Urban Outfitters moving into the old Rialto.

A little boy named Caine and his cardboard arcade put Boyle Heights on the map this year, but Blacked Eye Pea Will.i.am also brought a little attention (and, he promises, a car company?) to his native 'hood. Meanwhile, the city decided BH was so happening that it got back on track with a community plan for the area, the refreshed Boyle Hotel reopened, work started on the conversion and redevelopment of the creepy old Linda Vista Hospital, and in a few years the neighborhood'll be partial-home to an iconic and swoopy new bridge.

Poll results