Happy 20th Birthday, Los Angeles Eco-Village
This Streetfilm was shot shortly after the launch of SBLA in the Spring of 2008.
This Saturday, the Los Angeles Eco-Village is holding a birthday party for itself. The evening event is a fundraiser, details for which can be found at the bottom of the post. If you don’t have plans you should go to celebrate a community, and a movement, that has paid major dividends to all of Los Angeles.
Located on tiny Bimini Street in Koreatown, the Eco-Village is a scale neighborhood where people know their neighbors and care about them. People can live close to where they work and play and have access to other essential services without use of automobiles.
Together, neighbors try to minimize waste and pollution of all kinds. Residents and friends work together to create a healthy community socially, physically and economically. While that is pretty cool in its own right, what makes the Eco-Village stand out to many Streetsbloggers is its other reputation. The Eco-Village is also the incubator for modern bicycle advocacy in Los Angeles. Consider:
- It was at the Eco-Village where then residents Ron Milam and Joe Linton founded the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition. (Linton was also the first Editorial Board Chair for Streetsblog Los Angeles.)
- An unused community kitchen became the first home of the Bicycle Kitchen. That’s how L.A.’s first storefront bicycle co-op got its name. As you would expect it was an Eco-Villager, Jimmy Lizama, was the Kitchen’s first cook.
- Bobby Gadda and Adonia Lugo, both residents at the time, were two of the original members of a programming board of a small event known as CicLAvia. Maybe you’ve heard of it?
- And the Eco-Village housed, and continues to house, staffers and volunteers for the LACBC, CicLAvia, the Bike Kitchen, C.I.C.L.E., Streetsblog, the Bus Riders Union, and many many more worthy and deserving organizations.
Bimini Place is one of the city’s most Livable residential streets. In addition the the Eco-Village and the Bresee Foundation and Community Center, Bimini became L.A.’s first “shared street” through a mix of traffic calming and other road improvements in 2008. Covering the dedication was one of Streetsblog’s first big stories in L.A. Councilmember Eric Garcetti was there.
Of course, sometimes Eco-Village ideas lead to a little civil disobedience for the cause of completing the street. In 2009, Villagers barricaded the street to all but local traffic for a street painting and party. Back when CicLAvia was just a funny word that people couldn’t pronounce, the Eco-Village was showing all of us uses for street space beyond car driving.
And that’s something worth celebrating.
Happy birthday Eco-Village. See you on Saturday.
Donation: $25 to $100*
Make checks out to CRSP – Special Event and send to:
CRSP Special Event
117 Bimini Place #221
Los Angeles CA 90004
* Proceeds to benefit the nonprofit Urban Soil/Tierra Urbana Limited Equity Housing Cooperative in the Los Angeles Eco-Village.