Is it visual blight distracting to drivers on nearby freeways or is it art? That's just one question raised by the LA City Council's decision today to light up parts of downtown just like Tokyo. We hear what's planned for two new skyscrapers that will be impossible to ignore. Also, California's three-year drought emergency may be over, but water conservation is as important as ever. We talk with the guy who measures the Sierra-Nevada snowpack. On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, Obama, Libya's Gadhafi and America's use of force.
FROM THIS EPISODE
The City Council took step today to make downtown's Figueroa Corridor look like Tokyo after dark. The Wilshire Grand project, a 45-story hotel and residence building and a 65-story office complex, will feature lighted advertising that changes every four minutes or every eight seconds depending on which floor it's on. Other floors will have streaming text and the floors in between will feature LED lights built into the buildings' surfaces showing giant flowers and vines. The Council approved the plan today 13 to 1, with Westside member Bill Rosendahl the lone dissenter. Today's City Council action overruled the City Planning Commission, which voted unanimously against the architectural lighting plan.
Segment image: Colored "architectural LED lighting" that will rise on the upper part of the Wilshire Grand hotel and office project, courtesy of AC Martin
Three years ago, former Governor Schwarzenegger declared a drought in California. Tomorrow, Governor Brown is expected to declare that it's over. The Department of Water Resources has measured the Sierra-Nevada snowpack at 159 percent of normal. Frank Gehrke is the Department's chief Snow Surveyer.
Frank Gehrke, California Department of Water Resources
In last night's televised address to the nation, President Obama said Moammar Gadhafi threatened a "massacre" in rebel-held Benghazi that would have "stained the conscience of the world." He said the US had a "unique ability to stop the violence… an international mandate…and a plea for help from the Libyan people themselves…"
Charles Kupchan, National Security Council (@CFR_org)
Salem Elhassi, Libyan opposition
Laura Rozen, Al-Monitor (@lrozen)
Michael Hirsh, Politico Magazine (@michaelphirsh)
Scott Althaus, University of Illinois
Scott L. Althaus