Notes and Notices

On art, architecture and design

6/07/2012

The Tangle of LA's Public Infrastructure Agencies

Posted by Carren Jao Pineda |



A regular Joe might think it's easy to change something on the very streets they walk on, but they would be mistaken. Before anything happens, a proposal and a plan has to go through multiple layers of bureaucracy, as graduate planning student Huma Husain's visual clearly shows above.

During the recently held Urban Planning Capstone Presentations at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, Husain presented this revelatory infographic in answer to the question, "What is the institutional capacity for implementing Complete Streets in Los Angeles?" As you can see, the answer is: it can be done, but not without an uphill battle.

The shared role of agencies in street design makes it difficult to institute change precisely because anyone who wants to change anything has to deal with so many people even on one small part of the road. Seeing this, one begins to have a renewed appreciation for the triumph of Sunset Triangle Plaza, LA's first street-to-plaza conversion, which "demanded a series of meetings between the departments of transportation, public works and highways and building and safety," not to mention the full support of City Planning Commission President Bill Roschen. It also gives one a sense of just how much it takes for advocates like Deborah Murphy, to introduce change in the city. Cheers to our complete streets advocates!

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