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Mixed-Use Proposal Could Add Development, Event Station Near Dodger Stadium

By Ed Fuentes and Eric Richardson
Published: Wednesday, July 21, 2010, at 05:34PM
BuenaVista Ed Fuentes

This narrow strip of land between the Los Angeles State Historic Park and N. Broadway could become a mixed-use development under the terms of a proposal before the Metro board tomorrow.

The thin strip of land that runs between Broadway and the Gold Line tracks north of Chinatown is hardly your prototypical development site. It is narrow, steeply sloped and cut off from the Los Angeles State Historic Park despite being immediately adjacent to it.

The family that owns the San Antonio winery hopes to turn those negatives into positives by partnering with Metro on a project that would add its land to the existing right of way, giving the transit agency much needed train storage capacity and allowing for development and linkages atop the tracks.

The Riboli family sent a letter to Metro on June 8 proposing the public-private partnership. The agency's planning committee last week approved a six-month exclusive negotiating period to develop general terms for the deal, and the full board should approve the proposal at its meeting on Thursday. That would allow agency staff to negotiate, but would not dictate that a project move forward.

The parcel in question features more than 3,000 feet of Broadway frontage, stretching from approximately Cottage Home Street to the L.A. River.

While the family declined to go into specifics on its proposal, it did say that it hoped to create a "win-win situation" for Downtown residents and a mixed-use development that would have a view of the park. Its proposal calls the deal a "once in a lifetime opportunity to enhance the community."

Along with space to store trains, a report by Metro staff indicates that the agency would also use the opportunity to more completely separate the Gold Line tracks from the park, which is commonly referred to as the Cornfields.

The report also raises the possibility that an "event station" could be constructed that would serve special events at the park and Dodger Stadium.

While not mentioned in the proposal or the report, the development could also the opportunity to mark and connect Los Angeles with a lost enclave. St. Peter's Italian Catholic Church, down the street at 1039 N. Broadway, is one of the few reminders of what was once a Little Italy in Los Angeles.

If it all goes through, a Gold Line Event Station named after Italian-American and former Dodger manager Tommy Lasorda would cover all the bases.

 

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