Proposed South L.A. plaza mired in pride and politics

Long awaited District Square

Merdies Hayes Editor | 6/6/2019, midnight
For more than a decade, there has been a grandiose plan to increase the..

Perry has remained steadfast that she is not the one hindering the project. “I never wavered,” she said earlier this year, “but I was not the ultimate decision maker in this process.”

Wesson has said Perry never met with him or anyone from his staff to iron out the problems related to the project. Wesson has, however, admitted to the unexpected difficulty in bringing new development to the Crenshaw District. “When you invest so much time, you’d like to see a result,” he said last year.

Garcetti has defended the need for the project, but believes it would be better to work with the developers on a redesigned plan. He prefers something with more residential space more in line with Measure H in effort to include badly needed low-income housing in the community.

Residents watch and wait

All may not be lost with District Square. The city planning department is expected to grant approval—possibly as early as this summer—and officials at city hall believe the project should have no trouble in attracting tenants and investors, once the financial issues are straightened out.

“The market will deliver something to this site,” said Steve Andrews who serves as an economic aide to the Mayor’s Office. But residents remain apprehensive, having endured a series of failed promises to help modernize not only this neighborhood, but other under-served settings in South LA.

“We certainly need a new shopping center for the community, but this long wait has left a lot of doubt in people’s minds,” Richardson added. “With all of the new construction taking place downtown and across the city, this is the one area that needs it most. I just hope most of us are around long enough to see it happen.”