With all the attention that gets pointed at the downtown gentrification, nobody’s seems to have noticed similar problems brewing in Hollywood. With a number of homeless services providers already operating in the area around Hollywood and Vine, and more planned, local business owners and residents are worried about the effects of centralizing all of the services in one place:
“It’s ironic that while we’re on the verge of creating a vibrant new Hollywood, we’re at the same time creating a potential Hollywood skid row,” said Fran Reichenbach, founder of the Beachwood Canyon Neighborhood Assn.
Of course, they’re most concerned about the effect it will have on the gentrification process. But I have to say I agree to some extent with the wisdom of centralizing services like this. If you’ve spent anytime around, say, 4th and Los Angeles then you’ve probably seen what kind of environment that can lead to. Doesn’t it seem to make more sense to scatter service centers around town in order to integrate them into everyday, regular life?
By the way, even if you’re not interested in this topic, you have to click that link just to see the picture of the guy with the words “SPARE CHANGE” tattooed on his forehead.
UPDATE: If you’ve got Google Earth installed (thank god they finally released a Mac version!), here’s a Placemark where you can actually see a tent city in downtown, near 5th and Towne. You may need to “Save Linked File” or something to successfully download it. If you have trouble with that file download, here’s a link to the entry on Google Earth Community.