Downtown Los Angeles is the central business district of Los Angeles, located close to the geographic center of the metropolitan area. The area features many of the city’s major arts institutions and sports facilities, a variety of skyscrapers and an array of public art, unique shopping, restaurants, & clubs. There are numerous festivals and plenty of Free Culture to be found in downtown LA.
Downtown Los Angeles is bounded by the Los Angeles River on the east, the U.S. Route 101 to the north, the 10 Santa Monica Freeway on the south and the 110 Harbor Freeway on the west; however, some sources including the Los Angeles Downtown News and Los Angeles Times, extend the area past the traditional boundary to include the University Park neighborhood (encompassing the University of Southern California and Exposition Park, just south of the 10 Freeway) as a part of the downtown map.
Downtown Los Angeles is currently undergoing a major transformation, with many historic buildings being converted into lofts, several retail businesses and restaurants opening, many new high-rise residential buildings being built and are slated to be built. Downtown has a population of over 52,000 residents, and has experienced massive growth over the last decade. It is home to over 500,000 jobs. It is also home to the Staples Center, the LA Conventon Center, and the adjacent LA Live entertainment complex featuring 5,600,000 square feet of ballrooms, bars, concert theatres, restaurants, movie theaters, and a 54-story hotel and condominium tower. Check out our blog post about downtown LA’s Grand Central Market here!
Hancock Park area is about 15 minutes to the west, Pasadena is about 12 minutes north and LAX is probably 40 minutes depending on traffic. There are not a lot of good school options for children ages 5-18. You would have to head west for a good option. Downtown still has a big share of the homeless population in certain areas. Visit www.downtownla.com for free Saturday bus tours of new & converted lofts. Tours are usually 9 – 1 & well worth a Saturday morning! For a great map showing all the areas/pockets: Click here!
(See my blog post about Exploring Downtown via Metro and on foot!)