What if Central Los Angeles could have a new park, 3.2 miles long?  That’s the vision for San Vicente Park, a replacement for much of the significant public land currently devoted to San Vicente Boulevard.  With the upcoming proposed Metro Crenshaw Line Northern Extension, a re-imagining of mobility and recreation will become available to consider public space for healthier communities.

Project Vision Summary

  • Convert approximately 3.2 miles of San Vicente Boulevard to public parks, plazas, and recreation facilities
  • Extend from Mid City (Lowe’s) to the West Hollywood Boundary (The Beverly Center and Cedars Sinai)
  • Maintain local access roads for homes and businesses
  • Encourage ridership in Metro Crenshaw Northern Extension
  • Provide alternative mobility routes for bicycles and scooters
  • Provide attractive first/last mile approaches and space devoted to new Metro stations

Before and After @ the “Fairfax Asterisk,” where San Vicente, Fairfax, and Olympic Meet

From Vehicles to Parks

The citizens of Central Los Angeles have a provable lack of access to quality public park and recreation spaces.  The upcoming proposed light rail project will connect this large swath of Los Angeles by light rail.  When overlaid onto the city’s street configuration, it becomes evident that the proposed mass transit line generally follows San Vicente Boulevard between Mid City and West Hollywood.  Historically, the boulevard was a major connector within the Pacific Electric Railway system (aka Redcars), and when the lines were removed, the street was widened for vehicular traffic, typically 3 travel lanes in each direction.

With the construction of the Metro, Los Angeles and its citizens have an opportunity to reengage with our public space and encourage the replacement of San Vicente Boulevard with a grand park, linking communities by providing alternative mobility options including pedestrian connections, dedicated scooter/bicycle lanes, and encouragement of mass transit ridership.

Without a transfer, the Metro line will link dozens of major LA highlights, including LAX, Inglewood, Crenshaw District, Mid City, LACMA/Academy Museum, The Grove/Farmers Market, Cedars Sinai, The Beverly Center, West Hollywood, Hollywood/Highland, and potentially the Hollywood Bowl.  Returning public space to citizens, away from vehicle use, is a gift to some of the most dense portions of the city.

Eliminate Confusing Intersections

As a diagonal street, San Vicente provides many instances of complicated intersections as it meanders against the general grid of Los Angeles.  Any frequent driver in Central LA will probably relate to how much emptier San Vicente is for traffic, but how it provides intersections too wide for pedestrians and too unsafe for alternative mobility options.

The project is conceived to have a northern terminus around Beverly Boulevard, as San Vicente Boulevard becomes a major thoroughfare for the City of West Hollywood.  Beginning at Cedars Sinai and The Beverly Center, the street links to the Melrose Design District, Pacific Design Center, West Hollywood Park, West Hollywood “Boystown,” and Sunset Boulevard hotels and attractions.

Before and After @ San Vicente, La Cienega, Burton Way, and W 3rd Street

History of Linear Parks

Many cities, including Los Angeles, have been re-imagining the public realm to be oriented away from dedicated vehicular use.  San Vicente Park would become a sister vision to ongoing efforts listed below within LA County.  An advantage of San Vicente Boulevard conversion is that it is a surface road, and won’t require any bridges or significant infrastructure beyond the already voter approved Crenshaw Northern Extension.

Around the world cities are enhancing their densest areas by providing an improved quality of life. The most famous is probably the High Line on Manhattan’s west side.  A coalition of community groups, developers, property owners, elected officials, and municipalities have coalesced around a common goal of improving the daily experience of urbanites.

Before and After @ Curson/Masselin Avenues, a somewhat typical stretch of San Vicente Boulevard where the median provides greenery but no amenities or access

Interested to learn more or become involved?  We are actively seeking community and professional partners to generate grassroots, corporate, and political support to make San Vicente Park a reality.

Email us at info@sanvicentepark.org

LA City and County Links

The historic Red Car line travelled up through San Vicente.  The proposed Metro Crenshaw Northern Extension will follow roughly the same path, allowing a possible conversion of public space from vehicles to people.