Downtown L.A.

Public Access 101: Downtown L.A.


**watch our new video below!**

L.A. River Ramble
Bunker Hill Expedition
Critical Campout
Vista Trail Hike

Hike the Downtown L.A. trails, and explore the ecology of public spaces in the elusive civic heart of our favorite megalopolis. You can ascend the peaks of the Bunker Hill financial district, and enjoy the high-altitude public easements on all the corporate meadows. Would you like to explore the interplay between art, habitation, and gentrification in the ecotone between the temples of culture on Grand Avenue and the streets of Skid Row? Or get a backcountry permit to access the concrete L.A. River, which is America’s most famous forgotten waterway!

 (Originally produced with support from Engagement Party series, MOCA and California Biennial, Orange County Museum of Art. Continued support for L.A. River Ramble & Water Bar from Play the LA River, Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority and L.A. Department of Cultural Affairs)


Los Angeles Urban Rangers: Therese Kelly, Nicholas Bauch, Sara Daleiden, Ron Milam and Jenny Price. Not pictured: Emily Scott.
Hikers begin ascent of Bunker Hill in the shadow of the Bonaventure Hotel.
Ranger Jenny discusses air rights in Banker Canyon.
Hikers trail-blaze a rarely traversed corporate meadow.
Perched atop a pedestrian bridge, Ranger Ron discusses pedestrian easements.
Bird’s-eye view of "Eckbo Meadows" at Union Bank (1968).
In Maguire Gardens, Rangers Jenny and Nick introduce the complexities of public and private space.
Hikers find a rare pedestrian path in Downtown L.A.
Ranger Therese directs hikers to the L.A. River and provides Backcountry Permits.
On the L.A. River Ramble, hikers gain rare access to the river under the 6th Street bridge.
Ranger Cathy leads hikers across the 1st St Bridge to view the infrastructure of forgetting.

Downtown Adventures and Hikes

Vista Trail Hike, Bunker Hill Expedition, L.A. River Ramble

A hiker logs observations in the Downtown LA. field notebook.
Hikers track usage in Maguire Gardens to identify public-private spatial behavior.
A hiker's log of Downtown Sightings and Observations in two vastly different Corporate Meadows.
At the Riverside Ranger Station, participants contribute their ideas about how to re-connect Downtown to its river.
Tasting notes from the Water Bar, sampling L.A.'s local and imported tap waters.
With the official L.A. Urban Rangers Backcountry Permit, participants acknowledge the River as a major public space.
The topographic model of Downtown L.A. orients hikers to the expedition trails.
Results of the Bonaventure Adventure scavenger hunt and orienteering activity.

Field Notes and Activities


Public Access 101: Downtown L.A. (2016). LA Urban Rangers, Cooper Hewitt

Public Access 101: Downtown L.A.

L.A. River Ramble, MOCA Engagement Party, Los Angeles Urban Rangers

L.A. River Ramble MOCA Video

Meet the Rangers (2011 )

Bunker Hill Expedition (2011)


(Places Journal)
(Stad 18: Debnatt och reflexion om urbana landskap)
(Boom: A Journal of California Fall 2016)
(Cooper Hewitt)
(Critical Landscapes: Art, Space, Politics)
(MOCA Engagement Party)
(American Studies, Ecocriticism, and Citizenship: Thinking and Acting in the Local and Global Commons)

Did you know?

Los Angeles is not located in a desert as is commonly believed. In fact, LA has a Mediterranean climate.