Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.

News

Will LA's 'Central Park' be a Downtown Freeway Park?

Before you read more...
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.

View Larger Map

Vaughan Davies of EDAW, an urban planning and design firm, has a good idea: to cover up an 100 acre portion of the 101 Freeway, or as he calls it, the "Big Trench, in downtown:

On top of the "Big Trench" -- that unsightly two-thirds of a mile of the 101 Freeway, just east of the 110 interchange between Grand Avenue and Alameda Street -- that brutally slices through the historic heart of Los Angeles. The Big Trench separates some of our most prized and appealing landmarks -- Olvera Street, Chinatown and Union Station on one side; Disney Hall, the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels and City Hall on the other -- creating isolated pockets of activity rather than what we need: a livable, walkable and unified downtown district.
Support for LAist comes from

He's right, there's nothing more boring than that "dead zone" walk between Chinatown/Olvera St./Union Station and the rest of downtown. It's like exiting a nice cool jungle into a hot desert of pollution and noise.

Work has already begun to explore the idea: twenty-five urban design students from around the country have been studying the project for the past week and next Friday, the best ideas will be displayed at Caltrans' downtown building's plaza across from City Hall.

See Also: Hollywood's Freeway Park (Part I, Part 2)