THOUGHTS N FEELINGS

Downtown, Show Us a Sign!

Downtown Los Angeles has clearly changed a lot in the past decade. Major galleries anchor the Arts District alongside restaurants and shops, high-profile art spaces dot both sides of the LA River, and a shiny new museum triumphs on Grand Ave. But you wouldn't know this from any of the signage in the area. As a driver coming into Downtown or circling its freeways, little indicates the newer cultural offerings that people may be traveling to or could be learning about through informative signs. For pedestrians, it's a worse fate. Most signage is placed at car-height - so they aren't even intended for those walking. And the signs that do exist use antiquated neighborhood icons and haven't been updated since the early-2000s. Downtown boasts a few info kiosk-style maps, mostly on sidewalk-installed restrooms and bus shelters, but the newest addition to those maps is Disney Concert Hall - opened in 2003. With thousands of people alone coming every day to see The Broad, for example, how is it that not one sign makes mention of its location? Updated culturally significant signage is in serious need here.  •