Last month, Streetsblog introduced a six-part series by Mark Vallianatos looking at how city leadership can start truly integrating land use and transportation in the six geographic zones he outlined: parks, hills, homes, boulevards, center and industry. First, he outlined the series and wrote about parks. Later, “The Hills”, “Homes Zone”, “Boulevard Zones” and “Centers” got their turn.
Each section includes a “ preferred mobility” that the land use and transportation networks should support, a description of the land type and Vallianatos’ prescriptions.
Vallianatos is a professor at Occidental College and the Policy Director of the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute, Board Member for Los Angeles Walks, and regular contributor to Streetsblog.
Without further ado…
Preferred mobility: zero-emissions freight
“So many [people] unneeded, unwanted in a world where there is so much to be done… Once upon a time, visitors could take a guided tour and see how tires were made, just as today, they can take a studio tour and see how movies are made.”
Thom Andersen, Los Angeles Plays Itself
The Industry zone refers to portions of Los Angeles zoned for manufacturing and other industrial activities. I will be considering how the products and inputs and waste of these sites are moved throughout the city and beyond and how industrial land uses can fit with the rest of the urban fabric. As I wrap up this series, thanks to Damien for running it on Streetsblog Los Angeles and to many colleagues, experts, advocates & my students for talking to me (and teaching me) about land use & mobility in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles has grown by producing improbable things: a Mediterranean climate in North America; oranges without seeds; pictures that move; distant water; oil from the ground; weapons for the sky; a new relationship between cars, people and places. These and other industries attracted millions of people to the Los Angeles region and helped shape the economy, built environment and transportation in and around LA.
In a previous post about single family residences , I implied that the house + car relationship was the dominant factor in giving Southern California its distinct, pioneering role in sprawl and auto-dependence. Industry created patterns in this sprawl. Historian Greg Hise used the metaphor of the magnet to describe how the region was planned as a multi-nodal area and how major industrial facilities attracted large scale residential developments.
As an example, Wade Graham in his contribution to the book Blue Sky Metropolis highlights how aerospace companies shaped the physical form of Greater L.A.
“The Big Six aircraft manufacturers, all of which had started out in tiny rented spaces in districts within a few miles of downtown Los Angeles, soon spread out to locations near outlying airports where there was room to grow: at Burbank, Santa Monica, Inglewood, and El Segundo… The postwar Los Angeles that emerged was a regional city, with its nodes sown from the principal aircraft plants and grown into surrounding, purpose-built communities: North Hollywood–Burbank–Glendale (Lockheed, Vega), Santa Monica–Mar Vista–Culver City (Douglas, Hughes Aircraft), Inglewood–Westchester–El Segundo (North American, Douglas El Segundo, Northrop), Downey (Vultee), and Long Beach–Huntington Beach (Douglas Long Beach). These spreading clusters traced a ring roughly fifteen miles in radius around Los Angeles City Hall, linked by an emerging system of freeways.” Read more…