Allan Abshez
Partner
Irell & Manella LLP
Background:

Land-use attorney worked on Getty Center and Farmers Market Appro-ached by planning commissioner Roger Landau to come up with downtown revitalization idea He and Landau came up with initial concept of Nighttime on Broadway last summer while out at dinner and a movie with their wives Concept similar to San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter Proposed concept to City Council.

Role in Makeover:

"We're creating a situation where, if you're trying to locate a club in L.A., this part of town becomes more attractive" Plans to make it easier for entertainment venues like bars, clubs and restaurants to relocate downtown by completing extensive permit requirements for them beforehand Said downtown would be first area in Los Angeles to offer incentives like already-completed permitting Would make sure new venues would not have to have parking requirements since parking already exists Wants to re-zone 500,000 square feet of upper-floor along Broadway between Third and Ninth streets for commercial uses as part of Nighttime Broadway Initiative Working with Building & Safety Department to renovate historical buildings.

Ultimate Vision:

Downtown nightlife like San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter, San Antonio's Riverwalk, South Beach in Miami or Denver's LoDo district To create L.A.'s first area where people could walk from entertainment venue to entertainment venue, parking their car only once for the evening A downtown with nighttime and weekend activity, in addition to jobs and residences.

Ed Avila
President
Project Restore
Background:

Lifelong Angel-eno Longtime political operative forU.S. Congressman Ed Roybal Los Angeles' Commis-

sioner of Public Works under Mayor Tom Bradley Deputy mayor in 1990-91 Administrator of the Community Redevelopment Agency Senior vice president/L.A. of Lockheed Martin's IMS division in the mid- to late-'90s Bachelor's degree from Cal State L.A. in political science Twice did post-graduate work in Sweden.

Role in Makeover:

In 1984, founded Project Restore, a non-profit organization dedicated to the restoration and redevelopment of downtown Took over as operational head of group in 1999 He and his group have been deeply involved in the $300 million makeover of City Hall, including placement of grand chandelier back in hall's rotunda, and locating and putting back the beacon that sat atop the building until the day after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor Has used political clout to help expedite the Caltrans, Court House and Hall of Justice projects, among others Instrumental in implementing Civic Center development plan Principal player in renovation of the old Broadway building into government office space and in efforts to bring a full-service supermarket to downtown.

Ultimate Vision:

Seeing downtown transformed into "a place where people live, go to movies, go to the supermarket, shop all the things that it used to be" Sees continued effort to restore historic buildings and renovate movie palaces downtown.

Pat Barber
Senior Vice President of Real Estate
Ralphs Grocery Co.
Background:

Twenty-four years at Ralphs, during which time downtown has not had a single full-service grocery store Has enlisted services of real estate firm NAI Capital Commercial to find space either in existing buildings or empty lots for a new downtown Ralphs Says recent boost in number of residents from newly completed loft construction has created enough demand for a 58,000-square-foot grocery store Has not indicated a timeframe for opening a Ralphs downtown store.

Role in Makeover:

Grocery store would fit the needs and demands of residents as population increases Los Angeles Downtown Center Business Improvement District estimates that 18,400 residential units are going to exist downtown in next four years L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency, which is working with various supermarket chains, says a new store, to be financially feasible, would require 10,000 households in area.

Ultimate Vision:

To establish at least one successful Ralphs supermarket in downtown.

Eli Broad
Founder
The Broad Foundation
Background:

Perhaps L.A.'s leading public citizen Built and sold two separate companies Kaufman & Broad Home Corp. and SunAmerica Inc. creating a personal fortune estimated at $6.5 billion Has been actively involved in downtown affairs for decades, including as founding chairman of the Museum of Contemporary Art in 1979 Perhaps greatest civic achievement has been raising the Disney Concert Hall from the dead after ballooning costs and lagging fundraising led to the project being temporarily shut down in 1995 At Mayor Riordan's request, Broad stepped in and raised the funds necessary to finish the $274 million hall, which is now under construction The Brentwood resident is still chairman of SunAmerica but has officially launched a new career as a "venture philanthropist" Spreading his wealth around to improve public school education and the local biotech industry, among other efforts Chaired L.A. effort to woo the Democratic National Convention, though goal of having convention privately funded fell short Driving force behind proposed renovation and expansion of Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Role in Makeover:

Newest downtown endeavor is an ambitious plan to recreate the Civic Center district into an attractive, pedestrian-friendly area that would complement its newest structures, the Disney Concert Hall and Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels Initial plan calls for transforming Grand Avenue with wide sidewalks and a pronounced curve, giving the Music Center a much-needed facelift, and expanding an existing park in the area all the way to City Hall, thereby creating a large mall Later phases of the vision would extend improvements down to Fifth Street, creating a connection to the Central Library.

Ultimate Vision:

Believes Los Angeles is the "city of the 21st century" Says downtown is already undergoing renaissance but believes all great cities need a vibrant center Says the rehab of Grand Avenue could turn the street into a "truly grand avenue rivaling the main boulevards of the world's great cities" Also thinks a new Civic Center mall would become the kind of public common space that L.A. has been lacking, a place where free concerts, Cinco de Mayo celebrations and other public festivities could be held.

Linda Dishman
Executive Director
L.A. Conservancy
Background:

Was a senior urban planner in Pasadena, involved in planning renovation of Old Pasadena... "Working on Old Pasadena and seeing how the pieces come together was important in learning how the L.A. Conservancy should approach preserving commercial historic centers, not only in downtown but in the rest of the county" Has served nine years as executive director of L.A. Conservancy Organization has been instrumental in saving the oldest surviving McDonald's outlet, which was opened in 1953 Worked to save St. Vibiana's, a Spanish Baroque-style structure built in downtown L.A. in 1876 St. Vibiana's had been headquarters of the L.A. Archdiocese until the 1994 Northridge earthquake shuttered it "During our efforts to save St. Vibiana's, we were under attack from many quarters. So we decided to be more proactive in our efforts to save buildings before the bulldozers were coming down the street" Currently trying to preserve a drive-in movie location in Azusa, as well as the historic downtown movie palaces on Broadway.

Role in Makeover:

Actively fighting to preserve many of the landmark buildings and historic movie palaces on Broadway and elsewhere in the historic core... Received $100,000 grant from Andy Warhol Foundation, $50,000 grant from J. Paul Getty Trust to identify historical buildings Focused on preserving historic movie theaters, such as the Orpheum Theater, built between 1911 and 1931 in a six-block area... Identified more than 50 historic buildings that could be converted into downtown housing "We have focused on being very market driven. We want to make it as easy as possible for developers to come in and develop the buildings."

Ultimate Vision:

Making downtown a 24-hour neighborhood where people live, work and play Wants historic buildings to become integral, active part of downtown, where people will want to go to shop, eat at restaurants and visit theaters "These beautiful historic buildings were basically untouched because the 1980s passed them by."

Judah Hertz
Chief Executive
Hertz Investment Group
Background:

Began converting old warehouses and industrial buildings in New York City into upscale residential lofts in the 1970s Moved to Miami in late 1970s and began investing in foreclosed properties across the country, from dorms at Wichita State University to apartment complexes in Louisiana and hotels in Baltimore Also converted buildings into condos in Miami Moved to Los Angeles about 10 years ago.

Role in Makeover:

Started buying downtown properties in mid-1990s when prices were at rock bottom Followed suggestion of fellow downtown developer Tom Gilmore and purchased the nearly half-vacant International Jewelry Center on Hill Street for $24.5 million in 1996 Later snapped up a number of downtown properties along Spring Street and elsewhere His current downtown portfolio of about 15 buildings is valued at $700 million and includes the California Mart and Union Bank Plaza, which he recently bought for $89 million Also owns Art Deco-style Oviatt Building, which he bought for $1.5 million in 1997 and recently put up for sale for $13 million Owns historic Wiltern Theatre building on Wilshire Boulevard and Park Plaza Hotel near MacArthur Park In 1999, sold the University Club, an empty 1960s-era building on Sixth Street, to a developer of telecommunications space for $5.65 million, twice the amount had he paid for the building two years earlier.

Ultimate Vision:

A 24-hour city More restaurants that will attract more people "Staples Center has already brought a lot of momentum to downtown"... Foresees new projects, such as Disney Concert Hall and the new Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, drawing more people to downtown and creating a vibrant area.

Ray Kappe
Founder, Chairman
Southern California Institute
of Architecture
Background:

Architect and urban planner In addition to role at SCI-Arc, owns and serves as president of Kappe Architects Planners Moved SCI-Arc from Playa del Rey to a former freight depot at Third Street and Santa Fe Avenue in downtown because the property was affordable Also felt school should be immersed in urban issues Longtime proponent of damming L.A. River "I've been at it for 50 years and always pushing and wondering when it would happen."

Role in Makeover:

Pushing to bring architects' and urban planners' viewpoints to downtown development Believes an educational facility devoted to architecture can look at land-use issues without being political.

Ultimate Vision:

Better linkages between various geographic sectors of downtown Eliminate separations between Bunker Hill and Broadway Having housing built over rail yards on Alameda Street A 24-hour city with far more entertainment opportunities "People come here and immediately go to Universal City and Disneyland. We have Dodger Stadium right here. I just don't think we're taking advantage of what the advantages are downtown."

Christopher G. Kennedy
President
Merchandise Mart Properties Inc.
Background:

Heads up Chicago-based Merchandise Mart Properties, a wholly owned subsidiary of Vornado Realty Trust Bought 12-story, 720,000-square-foot L.A. Mart building in downtown for $54 million, adding it to pre-existing portfolio of showrooms and office buildings Spent another $5 million to renovate Track record of successful trade show and property management activities in major markets, including Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C . Committed to Los Angeles in 1998 when MMPI launched NeoCon West, the West Coast's largest exposition and conference for commercial interior design and facilities management, held at Los Angeles Convention Center.

Role in Makeover:

Refining role of L.A. Mart in downtown, including establishing communication exchange between Chicago and Los Angeles Working with managers of California Gift Show and Los Angeles Convention Center to grow marketplace.

Ultimate Vision:

Sees Los Angeles, and downtown in particular, as unique, high-style, trend-setting marketplace for gift and home furnishings Wants to re-energize L.A. market and build bigger, better and busier conventions reflective of the biggest regional economy in the United States.

Wade Killefer
Principal Architect
Killefer, Flamming, Purtiull Architects
Background:

Has completed 30 projects in downtown Los Angeles 26 years in the business Renovated single-room-occupancy hotels and converted old office buildings into low-income housing Completed a survey last year with Degenkolb Engineers that identified 50 of 200 downtown buildings capable of being converted into housing, with an average of 100 apartments in each Met real estate developer Tom Gilmore in the late 1990s Chosen by Gilmore to be architect for Old Bank District project, which will have 1,000 loft-style residences at Fourth and Main streets, one of a handful of downtown loft-style projects.

Role in Makeover:

Gutting insides of old commercial buildings, adding a bathroom and kitchen but leaving most rooms open rather than separated by full walls Adamant about retaining airy 20-foot-high ceilings Hoping to create a style that will differentiate his projects from others downtown by allowing apartment dwellers the ability to decorate rooms according to their own needs "It's important to realize it's not one neighborhood but 10 neighborhoods" in downtown, he says "Downtown is a lot of different places, from the historic core to the artists' district to Pico Union to South Park."

Ultimate Vision:

Imagines 50,000 people living downtown within the next five years Sees an area with energy and spirit, like downtown New York, Boston and Chicago.

Roger Landau
City Planning Commissioner
Working on Nighttime on Broadway Initiative
Background:

Bankruptcy attorney serving on city planning commission came up with idea for Nighttime on Broadway last summer with land-use attorney Allan Abshez while at dinner and a movie with their wives Took idea to Jeff Walden, who heads Mayor Riordan's Business Team Decided they needed to revitalize historic downtown in much the same way that other cities such as San Diego, San Antonio, Denver and Cleveland have done.

Role in Makeover:

A facilitator Feels downtown has been too focused on tearing buildings down and building anew Pledged to convince city officials to change that by revitalizing vacant buildings Sees himself as "structuring a mechanism" that will help city officials like Mayor Riordan and city Councilman Nick Pacheco, who represents the district, to revitalize the area Plans to make it easier for entertainment venues like karaoke bars, clubs and restaurants to be established downtown by completing extensive permit requirements for their proprietors beforehand.

Ultimate Vision:

Wants downtown to be the "entertainment focus" of Los Angeles in five to 10 years Sees its buildings and roadways as providing a perfect infrastructure to bring people in on nights and weekends for entertainment, more so than areas like Westwood, which are jammed with traffic during those times Envisions a vibrant downtown.

Simon Lee
Managing Partner
L.A. Pacific Plaza LLC
Background:

Family emigrated from South Korea in 1976 when he was 10 Moved first to East L.A. and then to Monterey Park... Father had been in apartment construction business in South Korea, but family was unable to take much money with them Family arrived in U.S. with only $2,000... Father ran small grocery store in East Los Angeles... Remembers not being able to speak English very well when he was in elementary school and children made fun of him... Received B.A. from Cornell University and law degree from Harvard... Practiced law for one year, but realized it wasn't for him... Worked four years for U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in Washington, D.C., as legislative officer assigned to West Coast issues... Helped coordinate HUD money for earthquake victims in Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley following 1994 Northridge earthquake... Returned to L.A. in 1996 to start his own development company Has two bids in with Metropolitan Transportation Authority to develop vacant areas over two subway stops one at Wilshire Boulevard and Vermont Avenue and the other at Wilshire Boulevard and Western Avenue into mixed-use commercial and residential complexes.

Role in Makeover:

Working to see Belmont Learning Center finished as a school and to develop the project... Exploring various ways the center could remain on target as a school... Owns five shopping strips near downtown, Koreatown and South Central Los Angeles... Interested in buying up value-added properties in downtown, if the right opportunities become available... Dropped plans recently to buy two downtown L.A. commercial buildings, including former Union Bank building on Hill Street because of lack of on-site parking.

Ultimate Vision:

"Downtown is the heart of Los Angeles, if you have a bad heart, you have a bad city"... Believes downtown has a lot of potential to be a happening place with more residents living in the area and mass transportation choices... Would like to see more schools in downtown area to provide better educational opportunities for everyone and relieve overcrowded conditions.

Charles Loveman
Former Partner
Gilmore Associates
Background:

Undergraduate degree from Stanford Master's degree from Harvard MBA from UCLA Planner with Los Angeles' Community Redevelopment Agency from 1982 to 1988 Worked with development consultant Larry Kosmont in 1988-95 Struck out on his own in '95, first with his own firm and then joining Tom Gilmore in downtown loft development Serves or has served on several boards, including West Hollywood Community Housing Board.

Role in Makeover:

Financial force behind such downtown historic site renovations as the Rowan building loft project and the 230-unit, seven-building Old Bank District redevelopment on Fourth Street from Main to Spring streets Used expertise in public-sector financing gained while a member of the CRA to help fund the projects Old Bank District was backed by a HUD-financed mortgage with historic tax credits, the Rowan building by tax-exempt bonds with historic tax credits Financing formula used in those renovations is being followed by other downtown developers Having recently parted company with Gilmore, Loveman is thought to be involved in a current downtown project of some kind, but he is unwilling to discuss it.

Ultimate Vision:

Foresees a continued move toward market-rate housing, with homes "popping up where you would have never imagined," like on South Broadway Predicts an upsurge in "creative" businesses, such as graphic arts and design firms, media companies and ad agencies "It will give the Westside a run for its money in attracting creative businesses. It's definitely becoming a hot place to be."

Chris Martin
Co-Chairman, Chief Executive
AC Martin Partners Inc.
Background:

Native Angeleno whose family goes back six generations in the Los Angeles area Third-generation architect in company founded in 1906 by his grandfather, who helped design L.A. City Hall Family firm has long history of involvement in downtown construction, dating back to the early 20th century Received architectural degree from USC.

Role in Makeover:

Came up with idea of a downtown development plan in the early 1990s Plan became the Civic Center plan that is being used as basic blueprint for downtown renovation His company drew up plans for renovation of City Hall. "(My grandfather) designed it, I'm fixing it." Firm also designed Sanwa Bank Building, the 600,000-square-foot Caltrans headquarters and new downtown high school on Grand Avenue that has yet to be named Working on design for new Los Angeles Unified School District headquarters building An adviser on a new federal courthouse project "We have been working in the downtown area for almost a century now, and we feel a responsibility for downtown. If the city does well, everyone does well."

Ultimate Vision:

Downtown emerging as one of the major world cities, an area "based on art, culture, government, commerce, housing and recreation. We're starting to hit all those numbers right now, but there is still a long way to go."

Richard Meruelo
President
Alameda Produce Market
Background:

Started working as shoeshine boy outside parents' dress shop downtown Hoped to convert rundown area into bustling produce market With family, spent $35 million to buy 38 acres and several buildings Switched gears in late 2000 to focus on high tech Tech Campus project would allow tenants to sign up for buildings of up to 100,000 square feet Owns property adjacent to proposed prison site near Washington Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue Plans to expand produce market there, as well as develop tech park.

Role in Makeover:

Owns several properties downtown, including the 300,000-square-foot former Yaohan Plaza in Little Tokyo and a former S.E. Rykoff facility Proposed tech campus would include several four-story buildings for industrial and telecommunications tenants Project's scheduled completion would be simultaneous with completion of Alameda Corridor Corridor's rail tunnel would bisect tech campus.

Ultimate Vision:

To create a 1.5 million-square-foot Los Angeles Tech Campus at Washington Boulevard and Santa Fe Street Project could create as many as 2,500 jobs.

Geoff Palmer
Owner
G.H. Palmer Associates
Background:

Got law degree at Pepperdine in 1975, but never practiced Jumped into development and formed own company three years later Company built more than 9,000 houses, condominiums and apartments in Southern California and elsewhere Owns and manages portfolio of 7,500 apartments worth $1 billion In final phase of 2,500-unit master planned community in Santa Clarita Urban infill projects include 198-unit apartment complex in Chinatown completed in 1988 and 760-unit townhouse complex completed two years later in Woodland Hills Both projects are high-end luxury ventures that have become company's signature.

Role in Makeover:

With Medici apartment complex on Seventh Street just west of the Harbor (110) Freeway, became one of the few developers in the last few years to take a stab at the downtown housing market Said the project has been met with heavy demand: 335 units are built and leased, with the remaining 297 units set for completion next spring Complex features jogging track, full spa, golf driving cages, library and 24-hour security Monthly rents match high-end amenities up to $1,500 a month for a studio and $3,000 for a two-bedroom unit Now seeking final approvals on three similar apartment projects with a combined 1,122 units just outside the city's inner core: The Orsini on Sunset Boulevard, The Visconti on Third Street and The Piero on Wilshire Boulevard Explains that his projects' Italian names reflect the renaissance he is trying to create downtown.

Ultimate Vision:

Upbeat about downtown's future, citing strong demand for Medici complex as "Exhibit A" Says downtown naysayers like to cite high office vacancy rate, but forget that 26 million square feet of office space is occupied, where 375,000 people work everyday "You build the right projects and people will respond. We are targeting the professionals that get up every morning and go to work downtown." Thinks the area will be a very dynamic place to live and work, partially because outlying cities are opposing new housing, forcing developers to retreat to the inner city where density is welcomed Says successful development will involve "regentrifying" downtown with upper-income people "The only way you are going to make the city more vital is to have the people with the biggest stakes to live where the decisions are being made."

Wayne Ratkovich
President
Ratkovich Co.
Background:

Born and raised in San Gabriel Valley Received degree in political science from UCLA Worked with Coldwell Banker for eight years in sales and management Worked with developer Jack Samuelson in the 1970s before forming his own company in 1977 Present incarnation of the Ratkovich Co. was formed in 1985 Has long been a force in L.A. redevelopment circles Resume includes major historic rehabs of Chapman Market, the Pellissier Building (Wiltern Theater), Ladera Center and a variety of high-technology complexes One of his prize projects was the renovation of Wiltern Theater at Wilshire Boulevard and Western Avenue A member of several influential professional and social organizations, including the Central City Association, the Pershing Square Management Association, the mayor's transportation committee, UCLA Foundation, Urban Land Institute and National Trust for Historic Preservation Received Medici Award from the Greater Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce for his contribution to the arts and the Parkinson Award from the USC School of Architecture for contributions to L.A.'s urban environment.

Role in Makeover:

One of first developers to discover opportunities presented by upgrading existing buildings downtown Initial downtown project was the Oviatt Building at 617 S. Olive St., followed by rehabilitation of the Fine Arts Building on Seventh Street between Flower and Figueroa Did rehabilitation of Terminal Annex in downtown, transforming into the Infomart building An affiliate company, the Ratkovich Villanueva Partnership, manages the entitlement and disposition of the 500,000-square-foot historic Infomart building His company built the Fashion Institute Design and Merchandising structure downtown Firm also concentrates on "urban infill," creating more density on properties that already have been developed, such as putting a multistory parking facility on what had previously been a surface parking lot.

Ultimate Vision:

A city center where citizens can live and enjoy a stimulating quality of life that focuses on what is achievable Newly released figures showing a shrinking number of households with traditional families (married with children) indicates more and more people may find urban living preferable to suburban life, creating the opportunity (with the proper planning) to draw them into the downtown area to live and work Sees housing as "the critical component" that will eventually determine the extent to which business and entertainment expands downtown "It's the perfect time to stimulate the housing market. If we do, then the future of downtown is bright."

Dan Rosenfeld
Principal Partner
Urban Partners LLC
Background:

Born in Victorville Raised in Portland, Ore. Undergraduate degree from Stanford, MBA from Harvard Came to Los Angeles area in 1979 with Cadillac Fairview Corp., which won the hard-fought battle to build the $1.2 billion Bunker Hill downtown renovation project, now known as California Plaza I and II Site also includes Museum of Contemporary Art Worked in Europe for three years on a project that created what was then Europe's tallest building, a 70-story structure in Frankfurt, Germany Ran State of California's real estate buildings division from 1992 to '94, helping to consolidate government office leases across the state, saving taxpayers millions of dollars Tapped by Mayor Richard Riordan as asset manager for city of Los Angeles' General Services Department soon after Riordan was elected Joined Urban Partners in late 1990s.

Role in Makeover:

In addition to his work on Bunker Hill, was a key player in renovating the old Broadway building on Fourth Street into state office space, providing a cornerstone for continued redevelopment in that area With Riordan administration, worked to consolidate city departments into downtown Is a bidder with Clark Construction to restore the Hall of Justice Also bidding to renovate a 240,000-square-foot historical building downtown, won't divulge the site because negotiations are still underway Lends support to other downtown projects, even if he isn't involved, saying "even though I don't get paid, I do it because it's a personal satisfaction to see something that I was involved with at the beginning grow."

Ultimate Vision:

"Downtown cannot and should not compete with the suburbs. It should be the center link for unique activities you can't find in the suburbs, a place appreciated by the suburbs" Foresees more demand for public transportation as more people move into the city center to live or come there to attend civic, cultural, sporting and other social events "Every time I see an umbrella on a sidewalk table downtown, I see it as a step in the right direction" Predicts continued residential development throughout downtown.

Izek Shomof
Manager
Spring Towers LLC
Background:

One-time owner of Pacific Development Co... Built tract homes in San Fernando Valley... Renovated Premiere Towers on South Spring Street... Turned 1920s-era home of Los Angeles Stock Exchange into apartments with gym and roof garden... Units rent for between $700 and $1,200 per month... Newer Spring Tower Lofts, also on South Spring Street, are more expensive... Both buildings 100 percent occupied with waiting lists.

Role in Makeover:

Providing live-work space downtown... Rehabilitating dilapidated and empty buildings, and filling them with residents paying market-rate rents... Premier Tower had been struggling with nearly 20-percent vacancy rate when he bought it from Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency Now fully occupied, with waiting list.

Ultimate Vision:

Not so much interested in gentrifying as in making downtown more appealing to middle class... New movement is for lofts... Looking for other buildings to rehabilitate or convert and increase downtown population... Sees it going in the right direction... There is no reason for downtown not to be at high occupancy because of the beautiful buildings... No reason for it not to be like downtown Denver, Manhattan, San Diego and San Francisco... In two or three years, it will be a completely different place.

Stephan Smith
Partner
Los Angeles Center Studios
Background:

With partners, bought former Unocal headquarters campus on West Fifth Street from oil company in 1988 Spent five years getting entitlements to build on the property Planned a 5 million-square-foot office and hotel complex Market went bust, plans put on hold Planned a basketball and hockey arena on the site and explored buying the Kings hockey franchise Preempted by Philip Anschutz, who bought Kings and built Staples Center near L.A. Convention Center In 1996, started talking about location shooting for motion pictures at the site Opened first movie/TV production studio to be built in Los Angeles in 50 years in 1999 Twelve-story development includes 150,000 square feet of sound stages and 450,000 square feet of office space.

Role in Makeover:

Planning two more phases of sound stage development Ultimately plans to have close to 1 million square feet of sound stage and office space Bringing the entertainment business downtown Filmmakers come in, do their work and leave L.A. Center Studios brings a new element to downtown Films bring in workers who use downtown restaurants, hotels and apartments.

Ultimate Vision:

Plans envisioned 10 years ago are not going to come to pass Will not be a significant increase in high-rise office buildings Downtown will become a place to work, play and worship Bottom line: It will become a much "healthier" place.

Donald Spivack
Deputy Administrator
L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency
Background:

Eighteen years at the L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency has participated in projects downtown as well as in other areas such as San Fernando Valley and Hollywood helped with projects including expansion and rehabilitation of the Central Los Angeles Public Library, expansion of the downtown Los Angeles Convention Center in past few years primarily worked on residential development in downtown, as well as cultural and entertainment venues such as Staples Center, which was completed in October 1999 worked with Council members such as Nick Pacheco and the City Planning Department on simplifying the permit process for businesses wanting to relocate to downtown helped start the Downtown Rebound Program to encourage residential units for the downtown historic core

Role in Makeover:

Oversees the agency's initiatives in providing financing and other incentives to bring new private sector projects downtown "The role of the agency is to provide an environment where the private sector can invest in economically depressed communities and create affordable housing and jobs," he says the agency acquires property with lighted buildings and clear sites and sells them at reduced prices to developers incentives come from a portion of property taxes collected on the site various redeveloped sites have collectively brought in $1 billion in public investment over the past 25 years and created $10 billion in private investment in the form of 3,000 affordable housing units, 2,000 market rate units, 2,500 hotel rooms and 25 million square feet of office space.

Ultimate Vision:

Sees an increase in numbers of people living downtown and vacant or under-utilized buildings being put to economic use for residential, commercial and institutional purposes envisions a very pedestrian-friendly downtown with jobs, recreation and education within walking distance

Ted Tanner
Senior Vice President
L.A. Arena Land Co.
Background:

Registered architect Former city planner in Philadelphia Taught urban planning at university level Worked in Mayor Tom Bradley's economic development office from 1978 to 1986, managing $95 million redevelopment of the Los Angeles Wholesale Produce Market Vice president at Catellus Development Corp. in 1990s Worked on Union Station redevelopment, $310 million Gateway Intermodal Transit Center, development of MTA and MWD headquarters, among other projects Later, as vice president of Landrum & Brown consulting firm, worked on LAX master plan, assessing proposed airport expansion in relation to area land use and the community Joined L.A. Arena Land Co. when Staples Center project was already underway Tackled property acquisition, property and traffic issues Point man for second phase proposed for area surrounding Staples Center.

Role in Makeover:

Overseeing development of Staples Center II, formally known as the L.A. Sports and Entertainment Center Design calls for 33-acre, 4 million-square-foot mixed-use project Viewed by many downtown observers as a key component of downtown revitalization Project to be anchored by 45-story, 1,200-room hotel Other components include smaller hotel, 800 residential units, entertainment, retail, restaurants, office space, outdoor plaza Project just given unanimous thumbs up by L.A. City Planning Commission Final approval expected to soon be considered by City Council Potentially thorny issue of city subsidies for hotel remains unresolved.

Ultimate Vision:

Many parts of downtown that currently don't "hang" together well would become better integrated Realization of need for some cohesion among downtown's disparate parts grew out of his involvement in Union Station and other redevelopment projects Sees Staples Center project as "an opportunity to begin weaving and knitting and connecting up those wonderful parts of L.A." Final outcome will be a "living and breathing" downtown with a balanced living, working and recreational environment.

Rita Walters
City Councilwoman
Los Angeles City Council
Background:

Former English-as-Second-Language teacher in Watts Was on Los Angeles Unified School Board for 11 years before running for City Council following death of councilman Gilbert Lindsay in late 1990... Was a champion for school desegregation and a watchdog for the city's black youth Elected to City Council in July 1991... Represents Ninth District, which includes much of downtown Set to retire on June 30.

Role in Makeover:

Has been instrumental in developing downtown district... First project was to establish a long-awaited DASH shuttle service through the area, helping residents get to stores and community centers... Led fight against over-concentration of liquor stores in downtown area... Various projects in Ninth District under her watch include Disney Concert Hall, Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, Staples Center and expansion of the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Ultimate Vision:

A revitalized, vibrant downtown where people can walk around safely at night and enjoy a number of restaurants, shops and entertainment venues Plentiful affordable housing in the area and more job opportunities for downtown residents... A better mass transportation system that would ease traffic and help low-income residents to get around.

Mark Weinstein
President, Chief Executive
MJW Investments
Background:

San Fernando Valley native Bought first rental property while still attending Loyola Law School in 1982 Pooled money with law school buddies, personally kicking in $5,000 in student loan funds to buy house and four rental units for $148,000 Sold for $240,000 Rehabbed three century-old buildings a former jail, hotel and warehouse in Old Pasadena from 1988 to 1992, creating mixed-use projects with ground-floor retail shops, offices and housing Now owns and manages $150 million real estate portfolio that includes 1,000 apartment units and 2 million square feet of commercial and industrial space in downtown, Koreatown and other parts of Los Angeles, as well as in Reno, Fresno, Sacramento and Oakland.

Role in Makeover:

Spent $18 million a year and a half ago to buy 10 old buildings in the downtown Fashion District featuring ground-floor retail stores with upper floors dedicated to manufacturing and other uses Has entered into partnership called Flatiron Development Group that plans to convert eight of the buildings (seven are in the 700 block of Los Angeles Street) into residential/retail development at a cost of up to $90 million The 780,000-square-foot project is designed to feature 400 apartments, ground-floor retail, cobblestone courtyard, pool, fitness club Apartment rental rates envisioned to range from $800 to $2,500 a month Project still has a long way to go Has yet to be submitted to city officials for approval.

Ultimate Vision:

Downtown is on track to follow the same evolution as Dallas and Denver, where sports facilities sparked revitalizations that were picked up and expanded by other developers "In Denver, they took a place that was in a lot worse shape than we have (in downtown L.A.) and turned it around" See L.A.'s new downtown as a place where "everything is tied together" and residents can walk, shop, entertain themselves or whatever else they need to do But warns, "We should not think we are going to be New York."

Martha Welborne
Director
Surface Transit Project
Background:

Holds master's degree in architecture and city planning from MIT... As an urban planner at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, helped come up with a redevelopment plan directing major investments in downtown Boston, protecting that city's Chinatown and developing a plan for the Boston campus of Harvard University... Moved to L.A. in 1994 and became managing director of SOM in Los Angeles... Oversaw renovation of the Hollywood Bowl... Four years ago, created non-profit Surface Transit Project, which has been studying the feasibility of several dedicated bus lanes to ease transportation around L.A.

Role in Makeover:

With shortage of funds to expand subway line, has ushered several local and federal public officials, including Mayor Riordan, to Curitiba, Brazil, to see how that city uses dedicated bus lanes... Idea helped foster the Rapid Transit bus system that runs down Wilshire Boulevard, with devices to speed traffic flow by turning stop lights green as buses approach... Working to establish dedicated bus lanes that would alleviate traffic in and around downtown Also working to establish such lanes elsewhere One corridor is an old railroad right-of-way that crosses San Fernando Valley, starting where the subway ends at Lankershim Boulevard and traversing 16 miles to end at Warner Center... Another corridor is from Exposition Boulevard near USC, ending in Santa Monica... Also directing the public/private partnership formed to convert Grand Avenue between Temple and Fifth streets into a public park.

Ultimate Vision:

A downtown that is far less congested with traffic because more people are taking buses, subways and light rail to get to work... An architectural mecca, with the new Disney Concert Hall, Catholic cathedral and new federal courthouse capped by 16-acre park.

Ira Yellin
Partner
Urban Partners LLC
Background:

Formed The Yellin Co. in 1985 to develop projects Became one of the pioneers of downtown revitalization by acquiring historic Grand Central Market, Million Dollar Theater Building and Homer Laughlin Building With $44 million worth of CRA bonds, rehabbed the buildings, in the process creating 121 apartment units Also purchased and rehabbed nearby historic Bradbury Building at a cost of $16 million Created and directed international jury that helped choose Spaniard Jose Raphael Moreno as architect of the new Catholic cathedral being built downtown.

Role in Makeover:

Year ago, formed Urban Partners with Paul Keller and Dan Rosenfeld (who was in charge of L.A city real estate during Mayor Riordan's first administration) Name of the group connotes their commitment to urban infill projects Has entered into an agreement with the Hearst Corp. to evaluate redevelopment potential of Herald Examiner Building, where the newspaper was produced before it was shut down... Sees the building, designed by San Simeon architect Julia Morgan, as a space for architects, designers, foundations, etc. Also in negotiation to buy a "major undeveloped land mass" downtown for rental/condo project Exploring conversion of a group of warehouses into residential units in the artists' loft district east of Alameda Street Among bidders on the Hall of Justice project, the county effort to reopen the historic building that formerly housed the county jail and sheriff's offices.

Ultimate Vision:

Although Los Angeles, like other great cities, has competing high-density "nodes" such as Glendale/Burbank, downtown is the area's largest density center, and is an "interesting place to live and work" with unique architecture As such, downtown will sprout with new higher-density housing, fueled by the reluctance of outlying cities to approve such housing New housing, combined with an expanding public transportation system and beautification programs (including interesting lighting, trees and other streetscape amenities) will create real downtown neighborhoods "It has everything people want in a living environment."

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