The Housing Authority of the City of LA has big plans for Jordan Downs, 700 units of public housing in the heart of Watts where some families have lived for generations. Private developers have now begun plans to tear it all down to make way for a much larger "urban village," including subsidized homes and houses to be sold at fair-market value. The idea is to upgrade the neighborhood without the displacement of low-income people that comes with gentrification. Will all the current residents be allowed to move back in? Where will they go in the meantime? Can private operators protect the public interest while they're making a profit? On our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, long-term unemployment and the "American Dream."
FROM THIS EPISODE
Jordan Downs in LA's Watts district was begun as a shelter for factory workers during World War II. It was turned into public housing in the 1950's. After the Watts riots of 1965, it became known for gang violence and other forms of crime. Generations of families have been living there since, and they report that conditions aren't as bad as they used to be. Now HACLA, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, has authorized private developers to plan the tearing down of all 700 units, to be replaced with 1800 new homes they call an "urban village."
Saul Gonzalez, Host, 'There Goes the Neighborhood: Los Angeles' (@SaulKCRW)
Doretha Perkins, Motivated Mothers of Jordan Downs
Douglas Guthrie, Los Angeles Public Housing Authority
Jacqueline Leavitt, UCLA
Continued unemployment at 8.2 percent is not just a political story, but a measure of human misery. When formerly middle class workers are on the streets with their children, what's the future of the "American Dream?" We talk about the human cost of long-term unemployment for millions of Americans, the causes and potential solutions.
Peter Goodman, New York Times / International Business Times (@petersgoodman)
Peter Cappelli, University of Pennsylvania (@wharton)
Todd Thibodeaux, Computing Technology Industry Association (@CompTIACEO)
Cecilia Conrad, Pomona College
Peter S. Goodman
More From Which Way, L.A.?
Which Way, LA? The Question that Won't Go Away 23 years ago, the fires of the Rodney King riots were burning and the sirens wailing when KCRW first asked, WWLA? We've been through fires, floods, earthquakes and massive social, cultural and economic change. While this is the last program titled WWLA? the question still needs to be asked. We talk with a group of important and thoughtful people about what LA has become and about the challenges to be faced in the future…as we continue.
Then and Now: Is LA Still the Car Capital of the World? Urban planners got some bad news today. Ridership on public transit in Southern California is on the decline, despite the billions being spent in recent years to build light rail and subway lines. Why aren't more drivers leaving their cars at home, as traffic gets more congested than ever? Meantime, there's a shortage of money to repair aging roads, bridges and other parts of the infrastructure. We look at the impact on the state's economy.
Does California Have a Double Standard for the Public's Protection? Porter Ranch and Vernon are mirror images of each other. In one, schools have been closed and thousands of residents are being moved away by the polluter—just months after a natural gas leak was discovered. In the other, residents complained for years about health risks to school children from exposure to lead and arsenic from a battery recycling plant— until the federal government finally stepped in.
Is 'Warfare' a Thing of the Past at the LAPD? Video of police misconduct wasn’t as common 25 years ago as it is today. The spectacle of LAPD officers beating Rodney King was a wake-up call, but didn’t persuade a jury in Simi Valley. When the cops received not-guilty verdicts, the city exploded. We hear from veteran officers who say they’ve changed. What about their tactics? Have they gained the trust of marginalized communities and people of color?
LATEST BLOG POSTS
Substandard living in Santa Barbara Property owner Dario Pini houses thousands of low-income tenants throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties, but faces over 3,000 health and safety violations and three lawsuits by the city of… Read More
How to prepare for an earthquake Thursday is California’s Great ShakeOut drill. If you haven’t gotten your earthquake kit together and made sure you have a plan, do it today! What should be in your earthquake… Read More