This past march, the City of Los Angeles completed its $60-million purchase of the final 42 acres of the Union Pacific Railroad's former Taylor Yard.  The property is considered the "crown jewel," of the ambitious plan to restore 11 miles of the L.A. River between Griffith Park and Downtown Los Angeles.

However, due to the Taylor Yard's legacy as a railroad facility, transforming the brownfield site into river-integrated green space will require substantial soil remediation.  Rather than wait until an undetermined date in the future, the City is looking to activate portions of the property as open space in the near term by implementing a series of interim improvements that will not require full remediation.

A draft plan drawn up by the Bureau of the Engineering proposes features such as:

  • An access point for L.A. River kayaking
  • A one-acre dog park
  • An amphitheater
  • 8.2 acres for day camps, overnight camping, training exercise, nature programs, film screenings and music events.
  • Platforms for bird watching, picnicking, small concers and art classes
  • A parking lot that could double as space for a farmer's market or flea market
  • Elevated walkways, trails and bike paths

Additionally, the draft plan calls for 20 acres of phytoremediation plantings on contaminated areas of the Taylor Yard site.  This would allow for a natural decontamination of the underlying soil.

The Bureau of Engineering recently issued a task order solicitation for wastewater and engineering consultants to work on the project, with proposals due by mid-August.

Image via Bureau of Engineering

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Four-Story Development Tops Out at 1st & Fairfax

The project includes 45 apartments and ground-floor retail space.

The wood-and-concrete frame of a small mixed-use development near The Grove is now complete. The four-story development, which comes from local real estate firm Conroy Commercial, replaces an auto body repair shop at 1st Street and Fairfax Avenue.  City records indicate the building will feature 45 residential units atop 1,258 square feet of ground-floor commercial space above a basement parking garage. Ovalle Architects, a Long Beach-based firm, designed the contemporary low-rise structure.