The "innovation"-focused Goldhirsh Foundation has put up $1 million to give away to the 10 best ideas that will make LA a better place in the year 2050, and opened the door for applications in their LA2050 project. Turns out people have a lot of ideas for improving this city--279 of them to be exact--some kookier than others. The winners will be chosen by popular vote, and polls close a week from today. Here's a quick look at 14 of our favorite contenders:
Antigua Coffee Shop: Convert an abandoned underground pedestrian walkway into "a flourishing community art walk gallery" in Cypress Park.
LA Currents: Build a data-rich, mobile-friendly map of LA that could tell you "where you could find out how much green space is available to your kids, what the teacher-to-student ratio is at your local high school, what building permits have been issued for construction," and a bunch else besides to better bring neighborhoods together.
River LAnding Collective: Create a temporary park by the LA River in the Elysian Valley to serve as a model for other river-adjacent areas and help people "develop a relationship with their river."
Green Octopus Consulting: Develop five bicycle-friendly neighborhoods using bike maps and destination guides, community rides, donated bikes, and bike valets to create "a socially connected community anchored by vibrant local business districts."
TRUST South LA: Buy foreclosed homes and build new "backyard homes" on the property, putting both in a community trust to provide new affordable housing options for local families and "create a model that can be replicated throughout South Los Angeles and other parts of the City."
Skid Row Housing Trust: Make Skid Row a "thriving and sustainable neighborhood" with the creation of a development plan that would incorporate neighborhood outreach and policy workshops.
Affordable Living for the Aging: Launch a social media campaign to extol the virtues of shared housing, which allows people to remain "integrated in their community while accessing affordable housing."
cityLAB-UCLA: More backyard homes! This one wants to create a flatpack prototype as a "public demonstration of new housing technologies."
Urban Applications: Document, analyze, and transform blighted areas using social media and other online tools. The project will empower people "to accept their responsibility and the opportunity to facilitate change with their neighbors."
Hive Lighting: Put state-of-the-art lighting in a city park in a low-income neighborhood "where better lighting, more park access and increased after school activities can make a significant difference in the public safety of the community."
Bike LA 2050: Install counters in high-traffic locations that would display the number of bicyclists on the road to improve bike safety and "lead to more people feeling comfortable choosing to commute via bicycle."
Pacoima Beautiful: Encourage businesses along a 1.6 mile stretch of Van Nuys Boulevard in Pacoima to make environmentally friendly updates to their buildings. The project would promote green issues and bring "businesses into our culture of environmental justice."
Pershing Square Advisory Board: Build a playground in Pershing Square to "improve the quality of life for the downtown community."
The LA Riverside Country Club: The LARC "is a situation where a series of popup events will be held." More specifically, they want turn an old rooftop cistern into a swimming pool where Eastsiders can cool off in the summer.
· LA2050 [Official Site]