2018-2019 Catalog

UEP 308 (Re)Designing Los Angeles

 At the city and county level, Los Angeles is investing in new infrastructure, transit lines, housing, open space, and civic architecture to a degree rarely seen and arguably unprecedented in American urban history. The total public monies already earmarked through ballot and bond measures and other means is approaching $200 billion all told over the next several decades -- with a significant portion to be spent before 2028, when L.A. will play host to the Summer Olympics for a third time. What will these investments mean for the urban fabric, architectural character, and civic identity of Los Angeles? How can they be made in a coordinated, complementary, and efficient manner? How can they promote innovation while also guarding against displacement and the loss of affordable housing and/or the erasure of neighborhood culture and history? The course will be led by Christopher Hawthorne, professor of the practice at Occidental, who after spending 13 years as the architecture critic at the Los Angeles Times was appointed in 2018 by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti as the city's first Chief Design Officer. Along with reading deeply into the urban and architectural history of Southern California, students will meet regularly with Hawthorne's colleagues in city government and hear from key figures involved in shaping L.A.'s built environment and civic future at this pivotal, transitional moment.


4 units


UEP 101 or permission of instructor

Core Requirements Met

  • United States Diversity