The community conversation on the future of Larchmont Blvd., Larchmont 2021, continues next week on Monday, July 12 at 7 p.m. with a discussion on placemaking, a planning term that describes how our thinking about public spaces like Larchmont can improve them so they become a places everyone wants to go and hang out. Of course, there’s a lot more to it than that, and Larchmont’s already pretty great, but there have been a lot of changes lately, and some of them seem to threaten the historically local serving nature of the street. Placemaking conversations have been happening all over the world for decades, but the recent pandemic has really underscored the value of shared public space and the importance of community. Plus, there’s a role that each of us can play, even if we don’t own a business or property on the street.
The next conversation is an opportunity to learn more about some of the most effective examples of placemakin,g which is why organizers (including the Larchmont Buzz) are excited to have two national experts join the conversation on Monday. Leading off is Howard Blackson, an urban designer in both the private and public sector, with a background in neighborhood development and advocacy. His experience is as an urban design educator who has worked throughout Southern California and, in particular, San Diego. Then Lindsay Wallace, who serves as Director of Strategic Projects and Design Services for Main Street America Institute, part of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, will share her perspective on successful national efforts. Wallace is an expert in placemaking initiatives and content, and the mission of Main Street America is to bring economic vitality to neighborhoods while celebrating their historic character and bringing communities together.
The first conversation hosted by Larchmont 2021, took place on June 28 and focused on issues facing retail businesses (including restaurants) on the street, and presented insights from a local architect, a real estate consultant who specializes in retail planning, and the director of the Westwood Village Business Improvement District. If you missed it, you can read our coverage of the meeting or listen to a recording of the nearly two-hour meeting.
To sign up for the Monday’s conversation, visit Larchmont2021.com, Larchmont 2021 is organized by a consortium of neighborhood-serving organizations, including the Larchmont Buzz, the Larchmont Business Association (LBA), the Larchmont Business Improvement District (BID), and the Windsor Square Association.