Think LA has too many issues? Then start voting in the My LA2050 Challenge, a competition handing out $1 million in grants to some of the most innovative and creative ideas meant to tackle the city’s biggest problems. Voting, which is all online, began on April 2nd and lasts until April 17th.
More than 275 ideas have been proposed. One is AN West Coast Editor Sam Lubell’s exhibition, Never Built: Los Angeles, which brings to life more than 100 innovative, often unbelievable, unbuilt schemes—many dashed by LA’s inability to embrace innovation—and challenges the city to change its culture of public timidity and banality. Another favorite is Farm on Wheels, by LA-Más, in which food trucks will serve as citywide “hubs of healthy food.”
The Hammer Museum has proposed Arts ReSTORE LA, in which the museum would curate an artisanal pop-up village in Westwood and offer a long term strategy to turn the neighborhood around permanently with long-term work and retail spaces for artists. Then there’s TRUST South LA 2050, a group that would create affordable homes for our local families, placing land under community control, and building green, healthy neighborhoods. And given AN‘s 2010 competition, we of course have a soft spot for the Cleantech Hub, which proposes expanding the La Kretz Innovation Campus—an incubator for clean tech companies—and putting together a plan to develop the entire Cleantech Corridor east of Downtown LA.
The challenge is part of a larger LA2050 initiative that’s looking at the long-term health of the city through workshops, discussions, research reports (making projections about where we’ll be in 2050), and a whole lot of online feedback. The “indicators” that LA2050 is studying, and hoping to improve are: education, income & employment, housing, public safety, health, environmental quality, social connectedness, and arts & cultural vitality. Not a small task, but we’re impressed that they’re trying.