Farmlab Public Salon
Friday, December 5, 2008 @ Noon
About the Salon
Mr. David Riccitiello of the Community Redevelopment Agency, City of Los Angeles (CRA/LA) will discuss the Agency's efforts to create more walkable, pedestrian-oriented streets in Downtown Los Angeles. The CRA/LA, together with the Urban Design Studio of the City Planning Department; the Los Angeles Department of Transportation; the Bureau of Engineering; and other City agencies, are currently developing new street standards and urban design guidelines that will 1) reduce street widening that would result in wider sidewalks to support pedestrian-oriented activity and street life, and 2) provide guidance for street-level improvements to create a livable, walkable Downtown. The "Design for a Livable Downtown Downtown Design Guide" will include both standards (requirements) and guidelines (suggestions).
The Downtown Design Guide encourages Downtown Los Angeles to develop as a more sustainable community. To achieve this goal, good choices must be made at all levels of planning and design – from land use and development decisions to building massing and materials choices – with a emphasis on walkability and the making of great streets, districts and neighborhoods. The focus of the Downtown Design Guide is on the relationship of buildings to the street, including sidewalk treatment, the character of the building as it adjons the sidewalk, and connections to transit. The successful treatment of these key features, coupled with particular attention to the details of a project in the first 30-49 vertical feet, form the basis for continuing high quality development at a human scale.
Other topics covered in the Downtown Design Guide include parking and access; on-site open space; architectural detail; streetscape improvements; signage; and public art.
About the Salon Presenter
Mr. Riccitiello is the Regional Administrator of the CRA / LA. He joined the staff of the CRA/LA in 1985. His early accomplishments as a member of the planning staff included the Convention Center Expansion project and the AB283 residential rezoning for downtown. He has received a number of promotions during his tenure, becoming a project manager in 1991. His project assignments included major commercial and residential developments and public improvement projects. Examples of his accomplishments include the 801 Tower, 777 Tower, Renaissance Tower Apartments, Grand Hope Park, FIDM, and most recently Metro Lofts. He is particularly proud of the affordable housing projects he has had the opportunity to work on, including Villa Del Pueblo, Villa Esperanza, Villa Flores, Metropolitano, Young Apartments, Ninth Street Housing and Grand Avenue Apartments, currently under construction. He was also the lead on the new downtown supermarket being developed by the CIM Group. His most visible accomplishment is Staples Center. He was responsible for securing the entitlements, design approval, and the assemblage of the land for the project. He was also responsible for developing the design standards for the Staples Center II master plan. Since August 2003, he has been responsible for establishing the East Valley Regional Office and has been instrumental in resolving problems with several major developments such as NoHo Commons.
Before joining the agency, he served three years as community development and planning director for the City of Gallup, N.M. Prior to that, he was a project planner for the McKinley Area Council of Governments. Mr. Riccitiello has a BA in Environmental Design from the University of New York at Buffalo, a BS in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and a master’s of management from the Robert O. Anderson Graduate School of Management, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque. Riccitiello is the CRA/LA Regional Administrator for the Downtown Regional Area. The Downtown Region is responsible for the Bunker Hill, CBD, Central Industrial, Chinatown, City Center, CD9 and Little Tokyo project areas.
Photo by Pat Smith, Landscape Architect