As Downtown Los Angeles plans for the future, artists and locals have mixed feelings about its gentrification.
The buildings are timeworn, left over from L.A’.s industrial past —years of labor, now shadows dancing behind modern street art that offer backgrounds to selfie-taking hipsters. Film crews push carts of lighting and camera equipment through a sidewalk past a man sleeping against dirty bricks. Broken glass sparkles on the asphalt like the invisible stars above the skyline, all while the smell of urine and freshly baked bread fills the air like a yeast infection baking in the sun.
What once was a center for wholesale and manufacturing became an inexpensive yet dicey destination for artists, is now turning into something just the opposite; A highly desirable area full of a vibrant collection of industrial chic-lofts, one-of-kind shops, world-class restaurants, coffee shops and bars. Some fear or criticize the gentrification that is displacing the people who originally made the Arts District so amazing.
These photos are just a small example of the transformation the neighborhood has undergone, for better or worse.