The Future of the Arroyo Seco Parkway | KCET
The Future of the Arroyo Seco Parkway
Although the construction of the Arroyo Seco Parkway birthed both L.A.'s freeway system and a moment of free-wheeling cultural optimism, it was also the beginning of a chain of events that would culminate with the current failure of mass transportation in Southern California.
The Parkway was originally designed as a hybrid between a (then) modern roadway and a scenic route, inviting motorists, albeit theoretically, to "smell the flowers" and enjoy the view. The 8.5-mile artery that links Los Angeles to Pasadena, now one of America's National Scenic Byways, has long stretches that curve unexpectedly, forcing drivers to slow down and pay attention to the landscape. In an era of powerful cars whose top speeds double and triple those common at the Parkway's birth, this high-minded bit of design not only creates potential safety hazards, but also fails to address today's transportation needs.
The construction of the much anticipated Gold Line, which on average transports more than 50,000 commuters a day through the same transportation corridor, along with the greater use of the 2 freeway and the rise of commuter bike trails along the Arroyo Seco, are slowly replacing the highly trafficked and rudimentary parkway. Just as the Highline in New York City was re-purposed as a city park once it had outlived its usefulness, infrastructures such as the Arroyo Seco Parkway could potentially be re-imagined to respond to changing needs and behaviors in the city.
The area got a glimpse of one such possible re-imagining in 2003 when Professor Robert Gottlieb and neighborhood activists, such as Nicole Possert, were able to have the Parkway shut down for a one-day event, the Arroyo Fest, and reclaim the Arroyo corridor. The event was a success, and it signaled that real alternatives existed for the reuse of our old motorways. It also provided a glimpse of what Highland Park once was: a destination, not a thruway.
Designation as a Parkway
The Arroyo Seco Parkway, a pioneering transportation structure, was designed differently than most of the freeways we use today. It has recently been designated a National Scenic Byway and appeared on the National Register of Historic Places in 2011.
Future Direction on Freeways
Linda Taira believes that if neighborhoods increase the number of local businesses, drivers will spend less time in their cars.
The Arroyo Fest
Robert Gottlieb uses the Arroyo Fest as an example to encourage new thoughts and purposes for city roads.
Repairing the Car Crux
Robert Gottlieb believes the codependency on cars in Los Angeles is a root problem that affects other civic issues.
For the last 30 years, El Nopal Press has intentionally been a studio where artists can experiment with printmaking. Some of the most provocative artistic pieces and innovations have come from the studio’s collaborations with women.
What truly matters? Ali Behdad, professor of literature; Kristy Edmunds, artist and curator; and Michael Eselun, chaplain for the Simms-Mann/UCLA Center for Integrative Oncology discuss the important things in life.
‘Bombshell’ Exposes Media Mogul’s Toxic Sexual Harassment Culture at Fox News on Screen at the KCET Cinema Series
After the screening, KCET Cinema Series host Pete Hammond sat down with director Jay Roach.
The U.S. currently incarcerates more people per capita than any other nation in the world. Police forces and school systems are beginning to use diversion tactics to redirect young people away from criminal records.
- 1 of 225
- next ›