Investing in Place Friendraiser: Whose Streets? Our Streets.
What’s stopping the region from implementing transformational transportation and housing projects that center environmental and social justice?
Hear from Investing in Place honorees Romel Pasucal from CicLAvia, Laura Raymond from ACT-LA, and Hector Ochoa from Southern California Resources for Independent Living – on what they see going on at the Investing in Place Friendraiser on Wednesday November 20 from 6-8 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Then at 6:30 p.m. a 30-minute panel discussion with the honorees will begin.
For a sneak peak of the discussion we asked Hector, Laura and Romel to share some of their thoughts in advance…
- Hector shared, “To be frank, likely ableism, in my opinion. I want to believe ableism is usually unintentional, but when you design with accessibility in mind, when access is at the forefront of any concept or process, I truly believe everyone wins. Who doesn’t benefit from curb ramps at the end of most sidewalks? Who doesn’t benefit from elevators? Who doesn’t benefit from large stalls in restrooms?”
- From Laura’s perspective, “The city’s development has been geared towards those with money and cars. There has not been a real commitment by decision-makers to build a city for the majority of Angelenos who cannot afford the new apartments going up and are losing their precious days to traffic or excruciatingly long bus commutes.”
- Romel believes, “We need to build active transportation infrastructure that is SAFE, and make people using it feel safe”.
And what is giving them hope?
- Laura is inspired by, “When community groups and L.A.’s labor movement joined together to write and pass Measure JJJ, that was a great step in the right direction. Rather than waiting any longer for the city government to do the right thing, we built a movement of residents and workers to get the job done.”
- And Romel, “Of course I would say… CicLAvia. It truly has been the most impactful and joyful project I have had the pleasure to work on. But in addition to that, I would say the other project would be – working to bring the Space Shuttle Endeavour through the city. That was such a historic and once-in-a-lifetime moment for the city and for people watching the Shuttle move through the streets of L.A., it created a lasting impression.”
- Hector shared, “Every time I get to work with non-disabled organizations such as Investing In Place, Los Angeles Walks, and others, this brings joy to my heart, especially when they are open-minded and intentional about full inclusivity in their day to day work. We absolutely can live in a City, County, State that’s full of green, full of innovation, conscious of our environment, safe and at the same time be accessible to all.”
Come hear more about their ideas and strategies to build an interdisciplinary team of community and advocacy groups organizing to build power and hold leaders accountable. After the panel meet and connect with more than 75 other people working on these issues as well. There will be plenty of food from Todo Verde, beer, wine, agua frescas, music and more.
Investing in Place has collaborated with partners to successfully advocate for hundreds of millions of dollars of public investment in accessible sidewalks, crosswalks, bicycle lanes, bus operations and improvements, safe routes to school and more. Now we are doing the hard work of ensuring that these dollars benefit the communities that need them most, and to support other goals related to housing, education, economic opportunity, and public health, among others. Because of this and the work of many of our partners, the L.A. region is seeing a surge of public investment in its transportation network. We want to make certain that our tax dollars are used to transform our communities instead of ensuring that business as usual marches on. To pursue this inclusive vision, we need a supported, community-grounded constituency – one that is lead by community based organizations and supported with policy, research and legislative advocacy. That’s why we’re having this party!
And that’s why this party is a friendraiser – a place to connect, celebrate, and look to the work ahead. It’s also an opportunity to connect with new allies and partners, to network, and to expand our collective impact. Let’s get inspired together to double down with partners as we work to collaborate to change our streets, promote safe access for all, and demand better buses, sidewalks, barrier protected bike lanes, and more over food and drink.
Hope to see you there!
The party is at Cross Campus, 800 Wilshire Boulevard, 2nd Floor, in downtown Los Angeles. It is right by the 7th/Metro train station – entrance to the building is on Wilshire just west of Flower Street. Take the bus, train, scooter, walk, or roll. If arriving by bike, use secure bike parking on P1. To take Lyft, use the code Friendaiser19 for $5 off two trips. If driving, Joe’s Parking Garage at 746 S. Hope Street ($6 after 4:00 p.m.) is recommended.