If every bit of Downtown LA were built out to its maximum density, it could support 4.3 million people--nearly 10 times the current number. But don't get too excited; if that did happen, most of those people would be sitting in the dark, thirsty and surrounded by piles of garbage. This is according to architecture firm Gensler, which just released an eight-minute video on the neighborhood's capacity, looking not just at what the city rules allow to be built, but also at the resources (water, electricity, natural gas) available to support more people. A design director at the firm told Downtown News that "the bottom line is that maximum density as defined by the city is really unachievable." At our current level of conservation, for instance, Downtown could only support 1.36 million people. Maybe something to consider as LA's zoning code gets rewritten?
This is the firm's third report on Downtown's future since they moved their headquarters to the 'hood a few years back--you may remember their gondola-heavy view of a car-free core from back in 2011.
· Why Downtown Growth Hinges on Water [DN]
· Gensler Going to Make Downtown Carless but Gondolafied [Curbed LA]