Vermont Median Park Vision Study


The Vermont Median Park Vision Plan exemplifies a new way of thinking about parks for Los Angeles: demonstrating a transformative attitude that puts people before cars and providing an innovative model for the City to acquire land, at minimal cost, for parks. The Vision Plan redefines and reconfigures Vermont Avenue, a major transportation corridor and existing public right-of-way into a multi-modal, multi-functional street with a 9-acre linear park down its center. 

Despite having one of the most temperate and conducive climates for outdoor recreation, the Los Angeles metropolitan region is considered a park-poor area with roughly 10% of total city land dedicated to parks, which breaks down to 4.2 acres per 1000 residents. Within the South Los Angeles Planning Area, where the proposed park will be constructed, this statistic drops to 1.2 acres per 1000 residents. Additionally, within the immediate vicinity of the future Vermont Median Park, there is only 0.1 acre of open space per 1000 residents. The project, once complete, will remove nearly 400,000 square feet of asphalt paving,  reduce by 50% the existing and excessive supply of parking spaces along the corridor, illuminate a crime-ridden street, add nearly 3.5  miles of dedicated bike lanes, enhance 16 transit stops, add 600 new trees to the urban forest, collect, filter and/or infiltrate gallons of dirty storm water from 360 acres of surrounding developed area, and add 8.8 acres of park—all while having minimal impact on the existing and forecasted traffic volumes.    

The Vision Plan proposes a design that promotes regional identity and a sense of place, highlighting the use of native plants, local materials, and water conservation techniques.  Many visible, sustainable technologies are proposed for the site, including the use of water efficient irrigation systems, permeable surfaces for two-thirds of the site, locally-sourced and 10% recycled materials, dark-sky compliant lighting, light-colored, and low-albedo paving. Additionally, a large sub-surface storm water treatment basin is proposed beneath the park. All these features strive to educate residents about their landscape, culture and history.

The Vermont Median Park Vision Plan and Feasibility Study provides the City of Los Angeles with a strategic action plan for implementing the proposed project, including outlining possible funding mechanisms and phasing strategies, and provides a vision, developed through community and inter-agency collaboration.  This project has the full support of stakeholders and the community, building a continuous momentum towards a vision that can be made into reality.