Koreatown needs more green spaces and recreation parks

April 18, 2016

As more skyscrapers and high rise luxury apartments are built in LA Koreatown, parks and green spaces for Koreatown residents are in short supply.

More development to meet the increasing population may contribute to the rise in real estate prices, but the need for parks and green spaces in Koreatown is being neglected by both politicians and communities.

Proposed large scale park has been replaced by high-end apartment project.

A project to develope a large park in the corner of Wilshire-Hobart, supported by Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) had major funding problems as the agency abolished. A residential complex apartment, ‘thhe Pearl on Wilshire’ is currently being built on the space that the park was going to be developed. Proposed park was going to take half the space of the ‘the Pearl on Wilshire’ project.

The CRA originally planned to committ 5 million dollars and 1.6 million dollars of funds from the state of California to build a 30,000 square feet size of park that includes a fountain, green spaces, a basketball court, and a community garden.

In addition to the park, a small amphitheater and a picnic place called ‘Koreatown central park’ were planned to be built on 15,000 square feet lot but is also presumed to be cancelled.

The lack of green spaces in Koreatown issue is not new. According to ‘LA Koreatown Environment Report’ that Koreatown Youth and Community Center (KYCC) authored, the ratio between Koreatown’s green spaces and resident spaces is less than 1:150 compared to other parts of Los Angeles.

In order to improve resident spaces, expanding green spaces is urgently needed. According to the report, the total size of parks in Koreatown is only 9.9 acres and this is only about 0.6% of the town.

This means that 12,554 residents in Koreatown gets 1 acre of green spaces but in other parts of Los Angeles, 82 residents share 1 acre of green spaces.

LA Department of Parks and Recreation recommends 1,000 residents share at least 3 acres of park or green spaces but Koreatown barely has 0.07 acre that is only 1/500 of the recommendation.

The only two parks that Koreatown have currently are ‘Seoul International Park’ on the intersection of Normandie and Olympic Avenue and ‘Shatto Recreation Center’ on Shatto Place and the 5th Street.

Strong community voices to demand more green spaces and develop more parks and green spaces are urgent priority.

<Cheol-Soo Kim – The Korea Times Staff Reporter>

One Comment

  1. by haze

    April 18, 2016 at 9:13 PM

    Has anyone read USC 8 U.S. Code § 1182 – Inadmissible aliens?