with Mike Davis and students from the Southern California Institute of Architecture



A 100 Acre New Town Center in South Gate, California was proposed on the site of a now obsolete General Motors Plant, which contains toxic residue from chemicals used by the factory. The site lies on the edge of South Gate, an incorporated city and Alameda Street, an industrial corridor commonly referred to as Los Angeles' Rust Belt District.



The planning study began with a regional, local, and site specific planning analysis to study alternative uses which would be appropriate for the site and become an amenity to the city of South Gate, Watts and the region. Transportation networks were analyzed; streets, alleys, freeways, public paths, mass transit and traffic routes as well as; adjacent industrial, residential (typologies), commercial/retail, municipal/ civic, and educational uses. A large commercial/ retail gap in the area was identified as well as the need for educational facilities, higher density housing and a community focused jobs base. Local community needs were incorporated onto the site such as a new retail commercial center which included office, shops and restaurants, public facilities such as a junior high school, day care, church and a medical center, community college extension facilities, post office, bank, public open space community recreational areas, theaters, a regional whole sale/ retail produce market, and industrial small and medium scale facilities. The Master Plan is focused around large public open recreational spaces which are surrounded by retail, commercial, civic, educational, higher density residential units and entertainment uses. The regional produce market and industrial facilities were located on Alameda Street and on the periphery of the Master Plan. Pedestrian and vehicular links to existing and future adjacent public transit systems and streets were highlighted in the planning as was the need for a pedestrian scale community focus. Retail uses are located at street level with office and apartments above activating the street and encouraging neighborhood security.