Frogtown doesn’t want to let market forces shape its future

The Los Angeles neighborhood of Elysian Valley is being roused awake. It’s often called Frogtown, a nickname from the days when the amphibians from the L.A. River frequented the neighborhood’s streets and fell prey to lawnmowers on a daily basis.

The community of nearly 9,000 primarily working class and largely Latino and Asian residents is experiencing the same real estate development pressures experienced throughout L.A., but with an increased urgency because of an upcoming billion-dollar reinvention of the L.A. River. In addition to external forces, an emerging DIY arts community is implicated in the neighborhood’s integration into L.A.’s hipsterfied ecosystem.

Amid this change, the community design organization LA-Más has a released a report, Futuro de Frogtown, which re-centralizes the goals and values of long-term residents into the future strategic planning process for the neighborhood. From the report’s executive summary: “Rather than have market forces shape the community, this project provides recommendations that would direct market forces to incorporate social and community goals into the development process.

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