LABJ FORUM: At the Center of the Sprawl
Staples Center, the Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels and the new Disney Concert Hall have spawned talk of a downtown revival. But it’s not just the big venues; bars, restaurants and major cultural attractions, including the Central Library, Music Center and the Museum of Contemporary Art, are also part of the mix. So the Business Journal asks: Do you spend any of your free time downtown?
I do not, because getting down there is really quite an effort. Coming from the west end of the Valley, you don’t think of it as a place to go. I’m sure there are wonderful things out there and I don’t know about them. I have to mortgage my home to park. L.A. traffic is so difficult that by the time you get down there, you’re too exhausted to enjoy yourself.
Vice President/General Manager
I spend time downtown because I have twin daughters who are freshmen at USC. I meet them for lunch and dinner. But other than the restaurants or the theater, no, because I live in Westlake Village.
Very occasionally my wife and I will go to a concert at the Music Center, or I might have a business appointment downtown but otherwise it’s not a place I ever go to. I have a lot of things to do closer to home and easier to get to. I always worry about whether there’ll be a parking space, whether it will cost a fortune.
Vice President of Political Affairs
Adelphia Communications Corp.
I’m beginning to spend more time downtown. We’re seeing people living there, which makes the night happen. I’m seeing a more vibrant downtown today than I’ve seen in the last 20 years. I go for lots of things. I go down there to meet friends. Downtown now offers more than just the business day. It’s come a long way and we’re on the right path.
CNBC, L.A. Bureau
I work in the Valley and get lost when I go over the hill. The only thing I was over the hill for was the Emmys, and that was for work.
I don’t know much about downtown L.A. I’ve been there only a couple of times for happy hours. I was invited to look at a location that’s right on Fifth Street, by the Millennium Biltmore Hotel, but I was a little bit concerned because I didn’t see a lot of activity down there. It seems like a fun place to be in the afternoon but at night, besides dining, I don’t think there’s much going on.