Enduring in the City: Creating a More Connected L.A.
May 2, 2012 Leave a comment
It’s no secret that I love Los Angeles. But at the same time, there are clearly problems with this (or any) city. There are problems with the physical space, the economic equality, the spiritual well-being, the race relations, and much more in the city. Sometimes, these problems make it difficult to endure, but I believe that Los Angeles is a great city and is getting better. And I believe it’s no accident that we’re here.
Most of what I write on this blog, even the more technical posts, are really all about connecting people as a means to improve Los Angeles. By better connecting people, enabling them to move between neighborhoods quickly and easily,and interact with local businesses and each other, I think there is a better chance to right many of the wrongs in the city.
Whether it’s a pedestrian plaza that brings commuters from Union Station to local businesses, a Metro Rail connection to bring tourists and businessmen from LAX to Downtown, or a new rail line that connects to some of the city’s major cultural, educational, and business institutions, my writings on this blog are mainly focused on improving connections in the city. Similarly, events like CicLAvia, film screenings in historic theatres, and ideas about improving parks and education all contribute to the lives of the people in this city…
At the end of the day, however, a city is about much more than buildings, parks, and trains. A city is about people. It’s the people in a city who truly make the identity of that place.
I’m encouraged greatly by the city-focused ministry of Reality LA. Last weekend, the message was specifically about the city, with particular focus on the city of Los Angeles. It’s not often (or ever, other than here) that you hear William Fulton’s The Reluctant Metropolis quoted in church. It’s more often a book reserved for discussion on urban planning blogs and master’s theses. I was probably one of the few people who had ever even heard of it. And yet, Fulton’s points about Los Angeles’s development as short-sighted, separated, and segregated make a great spiritual metaphor.
It’s my hope that by working rather with an eternal, connected, and integrated view for Los Angeles, I can help to create a better city physically, economically, spiritually, relationally, and in many other ways: a city that serves as a reflection of the city to come.
I encourage you to listen to this message, as it deeply relates to working in and for a better city in all of these ways.