Friday, May 04, 2007

Principle #6: Locate Jobs Near Housing

Last week, the Los Angeles City Planning Commission unveiled a 14-point policy agenda to set the city on a course towards sustainability, using Planning Director Gail Goldberg's mantra--DO REAL PLANNING--as an acronym for the platform. Each day, on this blog, I am sharing my thoughts on each of these planning principles through the lens of my own district work and the potential for citywide direction along these lines.

One of the reasons that Los Angeles spends more time in traffic than any other American city is because we stopped locating jobs near housing, and vice-versa. Many communities that have seen significant job growth have not witnessed a similar rise in housing. One of the best ways to reduce traffic is to build mixed-use communities, where people can live, work, and play in a localized area. I have strongly supported the mixed-use boulevard designation for transit corridors in my district and introduced legislation allowing mixed use projects that incorporate retail, commercial, and residential spaces in regional centers like Hollywood. The development at Hollywood and Vine is a great example of this mix, with housing for residents of all income levels located near jobs atop a subway stop. Imagine how much less traffic we would have if we could all walk or use public transit to get to work near where we live, shop, eat, and play.