clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

GQ Declares Downtown LA The "Next Great American City"

New, 57 comments
Ruben A Martinez /

Hey, guess what: GQ—the twelfth coolest print magazine based in New York City and the only one to name Abbot Kinney The Coolest Block in America—has declared Downtown Los Angeles either The Coolest Downtown in America or the Next Great American City. Those guys love saying stuff is the coolest! And we love taking the bait! (Here's how they gauge cool, so you can adjust your cool-o-meters accordingly: "Downtown has approached a critical mass of cool that even the most hard-core resident of Venice or Santa Monica or West Hollywood or Silver Lake would find impossible to deny." Soooo: rich and whitebread.) For the Angeleno or anyone paying attention to Angeleno things, the only real news-news you'll find in the article is that Downtown booster Brady Westwater "traveled the world as a mixed-martial-arts fighter." Wild! (There's also the suggestion that perhaps New Girl has popularized the Arts District, which is not unintriguing.)

But obscured among the East Coasty rhapsodizing about how French dips really help you get LA (the author declares Philippe's the winner) there's a surprisingly accurate understanding of what's going on Downtown: "Downtown isn't a bet on hipsterism, not on dumplings or cocktails or cool shops or food trucks. It's a bet on urbanism itself, a conviction that the past fifty years of outward, sprawling cul-de-sac development was just that: a dead end. That this is how we want to live, amidst the spark and jangle of humans pressed up against humans. Even in L.A." Ok, well, maybe we should've told you to stop before you got to that "Even in LA" part. Also, Cedd Moses owns a lot of bars.

· America's Next Great City Is Inside L.A. [GQ]
· Downtown [Curbed LA]