For the past half-century in Los Angeles residential housing has been driven by complicated interactions between design, planning and development interests operating in isolation. Led by desires for ease of approval using strict adherence prescriptive zoning and building code requirements (“BY-RIGHT”) or for negotiated solutions that seek development relief from perceived economic forces (“BY-DISCRETION”) both have resulted in less than desirable outcomes.
This discussion re-examines some of the long-standing assumptions and conventional drivers often associated with infill housing solutions and instead proposes alternative “trade-off” typologies BY-DESIGN that begin to link these interests as well as neighborhood interests in a more comprehensive manner.
The two-part discussion led by Liz Falletta, Assistant Professor (Teaching) at the USC Price School of Public Policy and Ric. Abramson AIA Architect and current Board Secretary of the AIA/LA Chapter. In Part A, Liz Falletta will contrast an historic example of urban infill multi-unit housing through the lens of “by-right” and “by-design” approaches. In Part B, Ric. Abramson will look at the developer’s “by-right” or “by discretion” mindsets that can be reshaped using “by-design” strategies that allow for more effective residential neighborhood solutions.
By-Right, By-Discretion, and By-Design need not be understood as three disparate approaches to developing the built environment. Urban neighborhoods can evolve through an expanded field of options within which propriety trumps expediency and environmental-responsiveness upends pure convenience.