Building a Message: Transforming This Vacant Lot for the Benefit of the Community

Youth Voices is working with students from the Los Angeles River School to re-imagine the L.A. River and the surrounding communities as part of the Northeast Los Angelels Riverfront Collaborative. The students have formed teams to explore and investigate their communities, map assets, collect and share stories, data and community input for their projects. All the while they are learning and expanding their knowledge of digital media and civic engagement. Follow their work here and on Instagram and Twitter by using #kcetyv.

We selected our community cause of revitalizing a vacant lot, because it is near to where we live and we want to make our community look better and help the community to get know each other better in a beautiful space. The overall response has been that people do want to see a community garden in their neighborhood and are excited about it.

The process of working on our cause was hard in the beginning, but when the group started to make progress the project started to get easier. We learned that there are many people interest in doing something about that empty lot.

The focus of our project changed because at first we wanted to do a dog park but after we did our community interview and got some comments from people, we decided to do a community garden instead because the community wanted that instead of a dog park. One of the comments we got was "The community garden seems like a great idea".

The main thing we learned was that the community does care about what goes on in their neighborhood and want to see it change for the better. We also learned that using social media can have a big effect in helping to change something.

Our next steps are to do more outreach and use social media to spread information about the issue. Other members of the community can get involved by helping to keep the lot clean and by calling the Bureau of Street Services - Lot Cleaning Division to request that the trash, rodents, and overgrown weeds get cleaned up.

(Update: Sizzle Sizzle Uh Uh took part in the Northeast Los Angeles Placemaking Design Competition and won for their re-envisioning of the Glassell Park-Chapman St. vacant lot. Their winning design is below.)

Vision for vacant lot


Building a Message: The L.A. River Represents Los Angeles


Mapping Community: Claudia E.