The NELA River Collaborative project builds upon the growing momentum of efforts already underway to transform the Los Angeles River into a "riverfront district" and to create a focal point of community revitalization. For more information visit www.mylariver.org
KCET Departures is the media partner of the Northeast Los Angeles Riverfront Collaborative.
On April 27, 2013, the Northeast L.A. Riverfront Collaborative hosted the River Bike + Walk Spectacular at Marsh Park in Elysian Valley. During the festivities, community members and visitors shared their stories and experiences of the river as part of the KCET Departures StoryShare event. Here are their stories.
Name: Ricardo Fiero
What has been your experience with the L.A. River?
Well I was born and raised right here in Elysian Valley, right next to the river. The L.A. River is kind of like my backyard, I used to come here most of the time.
When I was a kid I used to just play here in the river. At first I was kind of scared of it because a lot of people told me, the L.A. River is dirty, don't touch it or else you're gonna get sick or something. But that's what kept me from discovering what the river was all about. But afterwards, after I transferred from John Marshall High School, over there in Silver Lake, I was forced to join Sotomayor Learning Academies, and I had to pick one of the five schools there. One of the schools names caught my eye: it was L.A. River School. So I saw this as an opportunity to learn more about the L.A. River and the area that I grew up in. So a year passed, and I heard about this Rio Vistas Project. At first I was like, "Hmm this might be kind of lame." But then I got to know what it was about, and how it was about the L.A. River.
What is the Rio Vista Project about?
The Rio Vista Project is about taking, or targeting 27 or 30 cul de sacs along the L.A. River and revitalizing it, making it more beautiful for the community to visit. We narrowed it down to three cul de sacs. So what we do is we plot out the land, and we find out ways that we could bring the community together in places. We take community, we take the community's input and we transform them into ideas about what we could add to the cul de sacs and make it more beautiful.
How do you think these changes in the L.A. River will affect your community?
I think these changes would bring our community more closer. And get everyone to know each other better.
Fill in the blank: "I want my L.A. River to be..."
I want my L.A. River to be more alive.
Tell us your vision for a Riverfront District using the form below. Click here to see more interviews.