Mayor Eric Garcetti recently announced a $35 million Transformative Climate Communities (TCC) grant from the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC) for the South LA Eco-Lab, a collection of environmental and economic development projects in South Los Angeles. 

The funding will be leveraged with additional $24.6 million from the City of Los Angeles, Metro, and non-profit partners – totalling nearly $60 million for mobility, clean energy, and green job development projects in South Los Angeles.

“South Los Angeles is the heart of LA, and this investment will set our sights on what tomorrow should look like in a community with big dreams for the future,” said Garcetti. “This grant is a big step toward building the South LA that residents have envisioned for years – with improved quality of life, public health, and access to economic opportunity.” 

With a final project budget of nearly $60 million, the South LA Eco-Lab will invest in infrastructure projects such as LADOT Stress Free connections and EV Car Share, StreetsLA Cool Pavement, Metro free monthly pass program, home solar installation through GRID Alternatives, street trees, and school greening that will provide open space and stormwater capture benefits. 

The South LA Eco-Lab project area includes 3.9 square miles bordered by Vernon Avenue, 60th Street, Western Ave, and Central at its northern, southern, western, and eastern limits respectively. The project is expected to be completed in 2028. 

The grant was put together by a coalition of community based organizations, including SLATE-Z, Community Partners, CicLAvia, Climate Resolve, Coalition for Responsible Community Development, GRID Alternatives, LACI, LA Neighborhood Land Trust, SAJE, SCOPE, TreePeople, and TRUST South LA, who were able to secure the funding in partnership with the City of Los Angeles, LA Metro, LADOT, LADWP, and Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, and with support from the Broad Foundation.

The South LA Eco-Lab is the product of intensive, multi-year community engagement to bring healthier air, cleaner energy, new mobility options, and economic opportunity to a community with a history of racial injustice, disinvestment, and disproportionately high levels of pollution. The South LA Eco-Lab will also leverage or connect to other climate related investments and programs within South Los Angeles and throughout the SLATE-Z area, including LADOT’s Universal Basic Mobility Program, Metro’s Rail-to-Rail, and expansion of the Baldwin Hills Conservancy.

“Our community has been working to address poverty in South Los Angeles by revitalizing the economy in environmentally sustainable ways,” said Zahirah Mann, president and CEO of SLATE-Z. 

“The South LA Eco-Lab will result in deep transformative change for South Los Angeles, launching our community as a leader in climate mitigation and preparing our businesses, residents, and students for the climate resilient economy,” Mann said.

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