LOS ANGELES, CA (August 30, 2018) – Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis, world-renowned architect Frank Gehry, and President of Nonprofit River LA, Omar Brownson, and COO of Nonprofit River LA, Angela Barranco, yesterday, met with Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom to discuss the state of the Los Angeles River. Convening at the Confluence of the river, where the Rio Hondo and Los Angeles River meet in South Gate, the Lieutenant Governor was able to tour the space and better understand what the reimagination of the river might mean for the region, county, and state at-large.
During the visit, Brownson and Tensho Takemori, Partner at Gehry Partners, led a presentation that highlighted key areas relevant to the reimagination including flood control, open space initiatives, water supply, and health impacts. The Supervisor, Gehry, Brownson and Barranco engaged the Lieutenant Governor in a productive discussion about what the County is currently doing, and what the State of California could be doing to support all 51 miles of the river.
(From L-R) Supervisor Solis, Lieutenant Governor Newsom, Architect Frank Gehry, and President of Nonprofit River LA, Omar Brownson convene at Confluence of the Los Angeles River in South Gate.
“I strongly believe that regions rise together — that local leaders working collaboratively can tackle big issues, create opportunity and improve quality of life for their residents,”Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom said. “The reimagination of the LA River is a great example of that region-focused approach. Leaders across Southern California - representing both the public and private sector - are using ingenuity and outside-the-box thinking to upgrade existing infrastructure, enhance communities, improve public health and make progress on priorities like water use and environmental restoration. That’s the kind of innovative problem-solving we need more of across this state.”
“The Los Angeles River is a County gem connecting millions of residents throughout its corridor,” Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis said. “The stretch of the Los Angeles River that runs through my District was, at one time, comprised of many cities and businesses that served as Los Angeles County’s industrial belt. However, today the LA River is surrounded by communities that lack convenient access to parks and open spaces. These local neighborhoods deserve quick access to open green spaces where people can gather, walk or bike. I am determined to work with leaders across our state to breathe new life into our communities. With the Los Angeles River Master Plan as our guide, my hope is that we will continue to collaborate with partners, like the nonprofit River LA, so that we can strengthen and empower these communities as we continue to preserve and protect our environment.”
“We all have the right to be happy and healthy and the Los Angeles River provides this opportunity for residents across Los Angeles County,” Architect Frank Gehry said.“Over the course of the past four years, Gehry Partners has studied the Los Angeles River in hopes of better understanding its limitations, and more importantly, its abundant potential. Based on our research, Gehry Partners has explored meaningful possibilities that we believe could create and enhance open space along the river, and capture water to address issues of health and quality of life. Today’s visit is another step forward in uncovering the river’s potential.”
“The great challenge of our time is determining how we can create enough space for everyone to participate in all the world has to offer,” Omar Brownson, President of River LA said. “The transformation of the Los Angeles River is a true opportunity for us to come together as a community to deliver progress that includes everyone. The Confluence of the Los Angeles River in Southeast Los Angeles is at the heart of the reimagination we have envisioned for all 51-miles of the river. Together we can implement innovative, thoughtful solutions that will have a positive impact on communities across Los Angeles County for generations to come.”