Northeast Los Angeles Placemaking Competition: Cypress and Division Lot

Project submitted by Vince Caldera

Project designed for Cypress Park


Project Summary and Scale

This is a team effort from a few students attending the Los Angeles River School.

The project is an attempt to convert and revitalize the empty lot located on the corner of Cypress and Division into a rest area for the students that normally wait for the bus.

We hope to convert this empty lot into a rest area that will provide students with a safer and more convenient alternative to waiting on a crowded street after school. The rest area will provide a series of covered benches that serve to protect students
from heat, rain, and other elements while they wait.

In addition to the planned rest area, we hope to convert the empty lot into a green space with trees and native plants. There will also be some recycling bins and trash cans placed along to reduce the amount of waste .


Why are you committed to this project?

I am currently attending school at the Sonia Sotomayor campus and have been a long time resident of the area. On a daily basis I see my fellow students crowding along the sidewalk anticipating the next bus arrival. I am committed to creating a safer and bigger rest area.


What are the most relevant characteristics of project site and scale?

The most relevant characteristics of the project site are its location (Cypress and Division). This empty lot has been empty for far too long and takes up a majority of
the sidewalk and collects litter.



Describe how this project will reinforce a sense of place or enhance the built environment.

The project will enhance the built environment by minimizing the amount of waste that is normally generated with the presence of recycling bins
and trash cans, neither of which are in any sort of close proximity to the site. It will also create further enhancement with the green space such as trees and native plants.

As for the sense of place, the converted area will make it possible for individuals to share ideas and come together.


Provide a description of the project's necessary planning activities.

1. Create an event that brings awareness within the community about the efforts to convert and revitalize this empty space.
2. Test Soil
3. Gather Volunteers
4. Clean up, and plant


What is a rough estimate of your project budget?

$100,000. (Soil testing, bulldozing, excavation, secure property, trees, plants).


7. How does this project leverage existing resources and efforts?

This project uses every resource we have been lucky enough to have and receive. We use the various amounts of feedback from both community residents and community experts to
help guide us through our efforts. We have received strong support from eager and excited individuals, as well as many insightful suggestions that we feel will definitely benefit our efforts. Our strongest resource is that of the local residents, supporting architects, and even support from another lot revitalization group that converts vacant lots into green space.


What community need is your project serving?

This project serves the community necessity of unity, safety, and place among both students and residents.


If your project is realized, what does success look like?

Success will present itself in the form of use. If students, residents, and community members, use the rest area often and we receive positive feedback in regards to how the lot has had a positive effect on individuals then we have truly succeeded.


How to Vote for the People's Choice award: On the bottom of each submission page, is a ballot. Click the titles below to explore the submission, and once you've decided on your favorite, cast your vote. Feel free to vote for more than one (select several at once) and you can submit one vote per day until end of day February 27. See all submissions here.


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