Win:Win Journal – Re-Imagining Los Angeles


WIN:WIN “The Future, a Sustainable Los Angeles” – How does Los Angeles – its people, buildings and infrastructure establish a restorative, long-term relationship with the environment that hosts it and the financial systems that support it? Check out the inaugural issue at

Re-Imagining Los Angeles

“In this age of economic collapse, climate crises, addiction to fossil fuels, transportation failures and decaying infrastructure – thinking about the future might seem bleak. But smart planning today will ensure LA’s tomorrow. Though it is easy to imagine inventing new sustainable cities, the real challenge is how to adapt our existing ones. For a city like Los Angeles, perhaps the most unique city in the world, the question of HOW we get from here to our inevitably sustainable future is the most important question. How do we transform this sprawling network of freeways, neighborhoods, economies and people into a more responsible and livable future? This is an opportunity to reinvent Los Angeles. By building on the innovative and experimental attitude of Los Angeles, we could achieve some incredible results.”  – Eric Corey Freed, Guest Editor

LA city lights

The severity of urban issues in Los Angeles present a challenge, but they also provide an incredible opportunity. – Eric Corey Freed

As America’s first post war city, Los Angeles was an incubator and test bed for many of the most progressive infrastructure and architecture attitudes of the time. The city’s willingness to embrace and implement many of these ideas spanned and matured over decades, marking Los Angeles as the poster child for the realities of unbridled sprawl and establishing it as America’s cultural epicenter of the disposable and infinitely replaceable.

Both public and private projects—spanning architecture, transportation and the natural environment— in Los Angeles in the last half of the 20th century have taken massive financial and visionary bravado to execute; only now are we truly faced with their limitations and the reality of their capacity limits, environmental impacts and financial life cycle.

In the US less than 1 percent of all trips are made by bike compared to 13 percent in Germany. Even wet and hilly places, like San Francisco and Portland, have stronger bike cultures than Los Angeles where we enjoy year-round sunshine and mostly flat terrain. However, things are changing rapidly as evidenced by the number of new bike shops, the consistent massive turnouts for Los Angeles’ past three CicLAvia street closure events, the expansion of bike lanes and the inclusion of bike routes in every city’s long-range plans. — Ferris Kawar on “Bike Angels”

Los Angeles

The Cornfield Arroyo Seco Specific Plan uses transit and LEED-ND to create a sustainable neighborhood next to downtown. Photo By Jack Eidt

The Subway to the Sea and other public transit manifestations presage a mighty potential for Los Angeles: community-generator. Yes, they require billions of dollars in investment and years of construction dust and detours, and they never quite solve traffic congestion. Yet, alternative transportation that creates living, walking and working hubs can transform this unsustainable, fossil-fuel addicted, smogged-out polycentric megalopolis.  — Jack Eidt on “Polyhuman Los Angeles”


With a goal to foster the advancement of green building and healthy communities, the Westside Branch of the USGBC-Los Angeles is committed to the future of sustainability. Our journal, WIN:WIN, is dedicated to models and methodologies that inspire us to achieve transformative change in the built environment through the exploration of advanced levels of sustainability and a Beyond Platinum mindset.

We throw away the equivalent of 1,541 Rose Bowls full of fresh rainwater that drains through the LA River each year.  — George Wolfe and Thea Mercouffer on “Sustainability and the LA River”

Read more at Win:Win Journal for the New Sustainable City.

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Jack Eidt

About Jack Eidt

Writer, urban theorist, and environmental advocate, Jack Eidt careens down human-nature's all consuming one-way highway to its inevitable conclusion - Wilder Utopia. He co-founded Wild Heritage Planners, based out of Los Angeles, California. He can be reached at jack (dot) eidt (at) wilderutopia (dot) com.