And now, the conclusion of the 2014 Curbed Cup, our annual award for the Los Angeles Neighborhood of the Year. Because this is the most important decision of all time, the polls will be left open until noon on Friday, January 2, at which point we will declare the winner of the coveted golden jpeg. Let the final battle begin!
If there's one thing all Angelenos love, it's massive megaprojects and seven-story mixed-users in a soulless environment, we guess. How else to account for the continued Curbed Cup dominance of fifth seed South Park, which defeated first seed Koreatown in the last round. The neighborhood's been in a development boom since LA first started pulling out of the recession, but the neighborhood has outright exploded in mixed-users in 2014. And we're not just talking stubby seven-story apartment buildings, although there are plenty of those. We're talking towers like 1200 Fig, the 32-story building set to rise behind the Ace Hotel, and the 28-story one barreling along at Eleventh and Hope, and we're talking massive megaprojects like Fig Central, Metropolis, and Mack Urban's Millennial-friendly community. The neighborhood is so hot it's even starting to attract some decent places to eat and drink, and even old stalwarts like the Hotel Figueroa are being drawn into the fancification. Of course all that construction is making life difficult for the people who already live in the 'hood.
But for anyone who loves an underdog and an up-and-comer, there's eleventh seed Inglewood, which got rid of Los Feliz in the last round and has done improbably well throughout on the strength of community support and a number of big moves throughout 2014. Inglewood's fabulous Forum reopened after a big makeover just as the year dawned, and later the same month, news broke that Rams owner Stan Kroenke had bought a huge parcel in the city that would be just perfect for an NFL or perhaps MLS stadium. Meanwhile, work began on turning the old Hollywood Park Racetrack into an enormous multi-use development, and a few more development projects popped up in the same area. Plus, work started on the Crenshaw Line, which will run through the city.