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Unable to Raise Funds for Courthouse, Feds Shift Course

By Eric Richardson
Published: Saturday, January 12, 2008, at 12:28PM
Civic Center Lake Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Downtown's green space will be expanding in the upcoming year, but it won't be the city's Parks and Rec doing the planning. With the upcoming 2009 U.S. budget unlikely to include funds needed for construction of a new Downtown Courthouse, the federal government has decided to shift course on the land it holds at 1st and Broadway and create Downtown's first lake.

Master plans released in the 1960s and 1970s showed a lake as part of South Park, but this new federal plan instead sites the body of water on the block encompassed by 1st, Broadway, 2nd and Hill. While the land has already been dug out, budget issues and a tight water situation in Southern California have forced the Feds to rely on seasonal rainfall to fill the as-yet unnamed lake. Once filled, operation will be handled by the National Park Service.

Officials from Related Companies were unavailable for comment on how the new space would integrate into plans for their $2 billion Grand Avenue Project. The project sits on two blocks just north of the lake site.

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