The Curbed Cup, our annual award for the neighborhood of the year, is kicking off with 16 neighborhoods vying for the prestigious (fake) trophy. We’ll reveal each of the neighborhoods this week, and polls will be open for 24 hours so you can cast your vote as to which ones should advance. Let the eliminations commence!
(1) San Pedro
The Elite Eight round of the Curbed Cup kicks off today with two old neighborhoods on the cusp of change. The first seed, San Pedro, is overflowing with charm. There’s a an idyllic park on the bluffs from which you can take in panoramic views of Catalina Island. There’s a quaint downtown, a must-visit fish market, an historic theater, a photogenic bridge, a flourishing beer scene, and a year-round marketplace for locally-crafted goods.
This year, San Pedro’s lovely Hey Rookie swimming pool reopened after a makeover; the Growlers brought their two-day music festival to town; and Metro introduced bike-share to the Battleship IOWA, the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, Wilmington Waterfront Park, and the Ports O’ Call Village.
Though the town is slowly shedding its reputation as a blue-collar maritime town, many of the changes are happening right on the waterfront—namely a $100-million redevelopment of the kitschy Ports O’Call Village, set to get underway soon.
As one nominator wrote: “Imagine how big a hit San Pedro will be when visitors are at the waterfront enjoying their day and watching cargo ships sailing into the bay. San Pedro is a rising star in Los Angeles.”
Chinatown’s big year included numerous proposed developments and one that’s already materialized: the reopening of the Los Angeles State Historic Park. Long anticipated (it was a couple of years later than initially expected), the gorgeous, drought-friendly park includes new seating, a little public orchard, permanent restrooms, and a bridge with stunning views of the Downtown skyline.
The neighborhood’s also seen a significant uptick in planned projects—including the long skinny project just north of the park that would bring over 900 units of housing to Chinatown and new park-adjacent mixed-users.
Oh, and David Chang of Momofuku fame is opening his first LA restaurant here. No big deal.