Los Angeles – Downtown Crenshaw, the broad coalition that secured the support of over 280 community organizations and leaders, and over 10,000 signatures to stop the sale of the Crenshaw Mall to CIM Group, is hosting a half-day community design workshop as a part of its community-driven process of asking stakeholders what they want in the redevelopment of the iconic Black community asset. Downtown Crenshaw seeks to acquire the Crenshaw Mall to stabilize the existing merchants, and reimagine/redevelop the property using the principles of community wealth building and neighborhood sustainability.
WHEN: Saturday, August 15, 10 am – 2 pm
WHERE: Online. Participants must register at: https://us02web.zoom.us/
WHAT: Hundreds of mostly Black and Brown residents, merchants and stakeholders, coming together to reimagine a Black community icon. There will be presentations from national and local leaders in urban planning, and breakout sessions.
Dwayne Wyatt, a retired L.A. City Planner, who is a leader in the Downtown Crenshaw project said: “Typically, developers come into communities like Crenshaw with a preconceived plan to make their investors a lot of money and push out and ignore the existing stakeholders. At best their community engagement is performative. Saturday’s workshop will give the community the time and space to discuss what the Crenshaw Mall reimagined as Downtown Crenshaw – a mixed-use center of the Black community – can be that serves the interests of the community.”
“It is time someone asked the people what we actually want and need. And it’s time the community actually be given the chance to make that happen. This Downtown Crenshaw process is about self-determination, collective work and responsibility, and community control,” said Jackie Ryan, past president of the Leimert Park Village Merchants Association.
“There are a lot of big developers out there who are trying to buy our mall and have their bad ideas for our community,” said Damien Goodmon, executive director of the Crenshaw Subway Coalition and, founder of the newly established Liberty Community Land Trust. “They don’t seek to build for the Crenshaw community. They seek to push out our long-time residents and seniors. By the community taking ownership of the process, and eventually the mall itself, we are establishing a new paradigm. The key principle of this effort is community control. The community is going to own the mall at every stage of the process and that begins with planning.”
“The Downtown Crenshaw effort is the most positively transformative community planning process I’ve witnessed in all my years,” said former 8th District City Councilmember Robert Farrell.