Compiling the Evidence: Solutions to the Vacant Lot

The empty lot on Chapman St. in Glassell Park | Photo: Sizzle Sizzle

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 (@Burnthesnail) or by using #kcetyv.


Our community cause is an empty lot located at 3324 Chapman St, in Glassell Park. This lot has been empty since the late 1980's. This vacant lot has been making the neighborhood look bad and we would love to change it to a community garden/park because it would encourage people to interact with each other, make new friends and it would give the neighborhood a good image.

We selected this lot to work on because we wanted to revitalize it. Many people in the area have complained that the lot brings rats to their homes. It is also unsafe for people to go in because of broken glass, needles, snakes, and dead animals. The lot is also used as a giant trashcan with golf carts, wheels and large trash scattered all around.

We have learned that this lot is 9,610 sq ft. and has been empty since 1985. This lot used to have a duplex on it but after a fire the structure burned down. The lot has been empty ever since.

We interviewed one of our group members father, Raul Serrano, and landscape architect Michael Hee from Los Angeles SWA Group. Mr. Serrano said, "Yes, having a garden or a resting place sounds like a good idea." Michael Hee told us that he would help us make a plan.

Community members we spoke to also agreed that the garden/park was a good idea. They thought it would bring neighbors and people from other communities together where they could meet and make new friends.

This garden will be unique from other gardens in the area, including the one on Drew St. It will have more plots and a playground. People can bring their children to play while they tend to their plants.

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Building a Message: Let's Remodel this Vacant Lot

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