Friday, February 17, 2012
Public spaces of L.A. are focused on its beaches: Venice, Ocean Park, and cosmopolitan Santa Monica. But inland across the basin the public commons are highly commercialized and unnatural. There is the spider web of freeways, golf courses and cemeteries; there is Dodger stadium, Staples Center, the Angels baseball stadium, and Disneyland; there is the Getty museum and Disney Concert Hall; USC and UCLA. But no river runs through it, and no Bois de Vincennes, Bois du Boulogne, or Golden Gate Park provide respite and balance. It’s cars, and motorcycles, speedways, and sports stadiums, tall buildings, all in filled with suburbia. It’s what gives LA it’s hard libertarian, motorized edge, and distinguishes it from San Francisco, a much more European city.