In true Cinderella fashion, what was once an abandoned rail yard in the historic heart of Los Angeles has been transformed into a beautiful park after sixteen years of budgeting and construction delays. Slated to open this weekend on Earth Day, April 22, Los Angeles State Historic Park offers Angelenos a grassy respite brimming with picnicking grounds, wildlife conservation habitats, and 1,500 newly-planted trees.
“You’re looking at a new place downtown for public gatherings, flying kites, kicking a ball and just getting away from it all,” park superintendent Sean Woods told the L.A. Times.
A mere 20-minute walk from City Hall, the new site sits between Chinatown and the Los Angeles River and has already begun to welcome “a wave of development around its perimeter” since news spread of the planned revamp in 2001. Totaling 34 acres, the park’s new features include two acres of wetlands, a Welcome Center, a Blossom Plaza, a large promenade, room for farmers’ markets, a meadow, a paved parking lot and a pedestrian bridge.
The reopen festivities begin on Saturday at 10 a.m and will include music, performances, family-friendly activities and food trucks. Arrive easily by bike or from the Chinatown Gold Line Station.