Dangers of Wishing Upon a “Star-chitect”

This coming Thursday, January 11, there is a community meeting regarding a project that could have a major impact on Santa Monica’s future. As an involved group of architects, planners, and city commissioners, we feel this project, as designed, is not necessarily one that will be beneficial for our city or its citizens. A few … Continue reading Dangers of Wishing Upon a “Star-chitect”

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In the Spot…light: Creative Zoning in Santa Monica

Santa Monica’s new DCP (Downtown Community Plan) identifies three sites as “Established Opportunity Sites,” although the addition of the word “established” seemed to have appeared from nowhere in the final version presented to the Council for approval. The phrase “Opportunity Site” only appears once in the Land Use Circulation Element (LUCE) of the General Plan … Continue reading In the Spot…light: Creative Zoning in Santa Monica

Urban Thinkers and their Words, Part 2

Continuing last week’s article, this week we present additional quotes from architects, designers, and philosophers who have thought deeply about the city environment. “City life is not the only environmental option; a regional solution can offer a range of lifestyles and community types without compromising our ecology. A well designed region, when combined with aggressive … Continue reading Urban Thinkers and their Words, Part 2

Urban Thinkers and their Words

For this week’s article, and in the context of the Downtown Specific Plan, we provide a few thought-provoking observations by well-known architects and urban philosophers. Peter Calthorpe “Traditional urbanism has three essential qualities: (1) a diverse population and range of activities, (2) a rich array of public spaces and institutions, and (3) human scale in … Continue reading Urban Thinkers and their Words

SMart and Final

Santa Monica is at a crossroads. Will speculators or residents determine our city’s future? Since developers tend to think short term, focusing on profitability, it is important that residents, with their emphasis on the city’s livability, also weigh in to balance the discussion. At present, it appears that our City leaders have chosen to put … Continue reading SMart and Final