A Revived DTLA Attracts Attention and Esteem
Once a lonely ghost town of skyscrapers after sunset, Downtown Los Angeles now boasts a vibrant, sprawling community that lasts through the night. This is an introduction to the current state of Downtown Los Angeles and how the city developed over the last ten years.
During the 1990s, Downtown Los Angeles, also known as DTLA, seemingly only served as a commuter location for working professionals. The majority of professionals who worked in DTLA did not reside there due to the substandard living conditions of the community. When people thought about DTLA, Skid Row, the area that acts as home to thousands of homeless people, usually came to mind. This affiliation seemed to follow the unsought-after center of the city. From the 1980’s through the late 1990’s people who resided in Los Angeles would also rarely visit downtown because there was not much to do or see. Additionally, the traffic commuting into DTLA was rough, which made it less desirable to Los Angeles residents.
Now, this vibrant community is a place where people not only work, but live and socialize as well. What factors have lead to this tremendous growth? We take an in depth look at the revival of DTLA.
Nicolas D’Amico, a Regional Planner for Los Angeles County, explains the changes witnessed over the last ten years. D’Amico says the opening of Staples Center in 1999 had a huge impact to the growth of downtown. New luxury housing developments, restaurants and bars were introduced to accommodate the new residents. Public transportation also improved to make DTLA more accessible to everyone. The new Metro Expo Line, which opened in 2016, has a direct route from Santa Monica to downtown. The city evidently evolved into a diverse, dynamic community that all are coming to explore.