now that my schedule has calmed down a little bit i’ve been able to start doing the ‘i live in l.a but i’m still a tourist’ things that i’ve wanted to do for a while now.
today my ‘i live in l.a but i’m still a tourist' agenda involved going to the architecture and design museum on wilshire to see the 'unbuilt los angeles' exhibit. it's a remarkable exhibit for a lot of reasons.
one of those reasons is, of course, that a lot of what had been planned for l.a was idealistic and kind of random and, in some cases, deeply flawed (like the idea of extending the 10 freeway out into the ocean in front of santa monica and malibu). but it’s also remarkable, and sad, in that a lot of the grand and amazing and inspired designs and plans that would’ve made l.a a much better place (like, say, more municipal parks and an amazing subway system) were killed off before they could even be fully considered (the frederick law olmstead plan for an amazing inter-connected urban park system hadn’t even been seen publicly after the chamber of commerce killed it off almost a century ago).
the third thing that makes it remarkable is that some of these plans and buildings could still be fairly easily built and realized.
the one that really caught my eye was john lauthner’s proposed griffith park nature center building. to wit:
- the a&d museum have all the plans (including soils reports..)
- the land is currently empty
- it’s not a very expensive project
so maybe we could all rally together to get the lautner griffith park nature center built because:
- it’s great architecture
- john lautner is now rightfully seen as the patron saint of l.a architecture and this would be a fitting tribute to him
- it could remind people that it’s still possible to design and build great public buildings
just a thought. but a practicable thought. anyway, here’s hoping.