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Little Tokyo Motion Highlights Downtown's Lack of Specific Plans

By Eric Richardson
Published: Thursday, January 31, 2008, at 11:40AM
Little Tokyo Eric Richardson [Flickr]

This morning Curbed notes a motion filed by Councilwoman Jan Perry asking the Planning department to come back with options for how to keep Little Tokyo's identity. The motion expresses a concern that "Little Tokyo wil be overtaken by the development activity in the rest of Downtown - eventually losing its distinct characteristics and becoming lost as part of Downtown proper."

As discussed in our recent primer on the Industrial Land Use debate, planning in Los Angeles has multiple tiers. First, there's the General Plan for the city, followed by thirty-five Community Plans. Inside these Community Plan areas can exist Specific Plans, documents governing a smaller discrete chunk of space. The recently discussed LAESD Specific Plan is one example, in fact one of only three in the Downtown area (the Alameda district is around Union Station, and the Central City West plan is just across the 110).

Highlighted out of all of this is the fact that "Downtown" is not one thing that can be planned for in a single way. Different neighborhoods have different attributes that are worth considering and sometimes worth enforcing. That may Specific Plans or some other zoning / land use tool, but the important thing is that a careful look is being taken at letting Downtown neighborhoods stay as neighborhoods.

Update (2pm): After the jump, a bit of a "Where's Waldo" factoid about this photo.

So hidden in the photo attached to this post is a bit of a "Where's Ed?" Below is a crop of a tiny bit of the photo. The two people standing together are meekorouse and Ed Fuentes. Ed, typically, is wearing shorts. And yes, he's looking up at me as I take the photo.

Zoom of Ed

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