June 29, 2016
By Dennis Kaiser
The Downtown Center Business Improvement District just launched its ‘InnovateDTLA’ Initiative, a collaboration between the renowned Brookings Institution and the Project for Public Spaces. The group is working to establish DTLA as a leading center for innovation – much like Kendall Square in Cambridge and the Cortex District in St. Louis. Connect Media caught up with DCBID’s Carol E. Schatz to find out why the initiative is important for the city’s next chapter.
Q: What is this new initiative about and why was it launched?
A: Having emerged from a transformative Renaissance that has completely reshaped the area’s economic and social landscape, Downtown Los Angeles is rapidly and organically becoming a hub of creativity and innovation. To better support and maximize this dynamic evolution, the Downtown Center Business Improvement District, along with key public and private sector partners, is collaborating with the renowned Brookings Institution and Project for Public Spaces on the Innovate DTLA project: a series of workshops and research culminating in a report on Downtown’s future as an “Innovation District,” to be released in October of 2016 during LA Innovation Week. The main goals of the Innovate DTLA initiative are to:
- Promote downtown as a place of innovation and creativity
- Nurture the existing innovation ecosystem
- Attract more creative and technology companies, organizations and individuals to DTLA
Q: How will it impact the CRE market in DTLA?
A: The DTLA Innovation District has the potential to strategically push revitalization to the next level, and across all industries, providing diverse and inclusive growth, opportunity, and job creation. Downtown continues to be the location of choice for leading international and national finance, legal, insurance, and service firms, and when you combine the increasing number of creative and technology firms and business incubators and accelerators that make DTLA home, you create a dense urban synergy you find only in the leading cities of the world. A healthy real estate market, across all sectors, is a natural byproduct of that growth.
Q: What are some examples of industries or companies expected to participate?
A: Innovation Districts are highly valuable hubs of economic creativity across diverse industry sectors and vibrant populations of residents and workers. The DCBID is pursuing this goal with the nation’s foremost experts in the field: The Bass Initiative for Innovation and Placemaking, the Brookings Institution, and Project for Public Spaces.
Innovate DTLA already is benefitting from the participation and collaboration of the City and County of Los Angeles, LAEDC, USC, FIDM, Brookfield, LADOT/Metro, NationBuilder, Hyperloop One, LA Cleantech Incubator (LACI), Grid 110, WeWork, Whole Foods, The Last Bookstore, FIGat7th, Startups in the Sky, CrossCampus, MakerCity LA, Oblong, Holland Partners, Ratkovich, AEG and more.
It is this incredible spirit of collaboration that Innovate DTLA can guide this vibrant ecosystem of innovation and take the next step in DTLA’s maturation into one of the world’s leading centers for innovation.
Connect with Downtown Center Business Improvement District’s Schatz