River LA and Disney Break Ground On Three "Rio Vista" Parks In Elysian Valley

Los Angeles, Calif. (April 15, 2016) – River LA and The Walt Disney Company today transformed street-ends into vibrant community access points along the Los Angeles River as part of the Company’s $1 million commitment to LA River’s “Rio Vistas initiative.” The project will give kids and families public access to the riverfront via three new green spaces and natural landscapes, providing opportunities for them to engage with their neighborhood and enjoy nature.

"Today is truly a great moment for the Los Angeles River community made up neighbors, school administrators, and industry professionals who joined together to design, develop and now break ground on three iconic Rio Vista Parks along the river in Elysian Valley," said River LA Executive Director Omar Brownson. “At River LA, we are proud to be a part of a greater effort to co-create sustainable projects that convert neglected street ends into vibrant access points to the Los Angeles River."

River LA collaborated with local high school students and the community to design and develop outdoor parklets in Elysian Valley where 27 dead end streets bridge into the Los Angeles River. The students applied their ideas to the design of these sustainable public spaces, which converted the neglected street-ends into community assets or “Rio Vistas”. These improvements to the street-ends will re-orient neighborhoods towards the LA River, opening up access to existing bike paths, installing green infrastructure, enhancing pathways, and contributing to the overall enjoyment of waterfront open space.

"We are proud to support River LA in this effort to connect families with nature and improve neighborhoods in the community,” said Kevin Callahan, vice president of community and engagement, Corporate Citizenship at Disney. “Our hope is that these new parks will encourage children to build an appreciation for spending time outdoors and will inspire them to protect the environment.”

River LA works to improve the quality of life for Angelenos in four key areas:

  1. Creating of social and economic value along the LA River;
  2. Connecting neighborhoods to the LA River, while accelerating the corridor’s role as an alternative transport route;
  3. Bringing people together for recreation, learning, and public engagements; and
  4. Enhancing habitat restoration by incorporating green infrastructure improvements.

River LA, formally Los Angeles River Revitalization Corporation, was established by the City of Los Angeles through its LA River Revitalization Master Plan as an entrepreneurial, non-profit whose mission is to ensure that the 51-mile Los Angeles River integrates design and infrastructure that bring people and nature together. 


About River LA

River LA is a nonprofit whose mission is to ensure the 51-mile Los Angeles River integrates design and infrastructure to bring people and nature together. We champion river-oriented policy and sustainable public spaces, while creating innovative models for community benefit and participation. Visit RiverLA.org to learn more. 

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