According to a document from the Los Angeles City Council, yet another mixed-use development may be in the works for El Pueblo. A motion authored by 14th District Councilmember Jose Huizar directs the various city departments to prepare and release a request for proposals for the development of El Pueblo’s Lot 2. The two-acre parking lot, bounded by Cesar E Chavez Avenue, Spring and Main Streets, currently serves visitors to Olvera Street and several nearby museums.
Last week, a development team consisting of the Trammell Crow Company (TCC), the Cesar Chavez Foundation and La Plaza de Cultura y Artes quietly broke ground on a $140-million mixed-use complex near Olvera Street. La Plaza Cultura Village, slated for two Los Angeles County-owned parking lots at the intersection of Broadway and Cesar E Chavez Avenue, will consist of five- and eight-story buildings featuring 355 residential units and 43,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and restaurant space.
The effort to improve efficiency and capacity at Union Station has taken another step forward, as Metro begins preparing an environmental impact report for a long-planned series of upgrades to the historic rail terminal. Link Union Station, formerly known as the Southern California Interconnector Project, would allow Amtrak and Metrolink trains to pass directly through the station by creating as many as ten new tracks running south across the US-101 freeway trench, as well as a new loop track for operational flexibility.
You pretty much couldn’t look anywhere without seeing news about the LA River revitalization efforts today. With the Army Corps of Engineers set to release their feasibility study in August, the LA Times laid out the three most likely results in today’s front page article: 1. Alternative 13, which calls for strategic removal of concrete and restoration of the natural ecosystem at various points of the river between Griffith Park and LA Union Station.
In light of Metro’s series of workshops on their Master Plan for Union Station, I thought it would be nice to really take stock of what the future holds for the centerpiece of Los Angeles’ rail and bus network. Metro has made it clear that transit will be the main emphasis of this study, but the future of Union Station also holds implications for the surrounding neighborhoods. From a developer’s standpoint, there is a lot of land potentially up for grabs depending on the options chosen.
According to a memo from an upcoming meeting of Metro’s Service Councils, construction will begin in April on a new center-median bus platform linking the El Monte Busway to Union Station’s Patsaouras Transit Plaza. The $31 million project, funded in part by a discretionary grant from the Federal Transit Administration, will improve vertical and horizontal pedestrian circulation within the historic transportation hub. Currently, passengers on Metro’s Silver Line buses must disembark on Alameda Street, before crossing a freeway on-ramp and walking a quarter-mile to access trains and buses at Union Station.