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SoCal Explorer Partner Highlight: Central City Association

If you’ve lived in Los Angeles long enough, you likely have noticed DTLA’s dramatic transformation in recent years into a much more inviting and dynamic area. Much of that is due to efforts by the Central City Association (CCA), which advocates, influences, engages, and enhances DTLA’s vibrancy by acting as the region’s thought leader on issues that impact urban areas. In order to create a better downtown atmosphere, CCA leads, convenes and collaborates with business, government, elected officials, residents, educational institutions, nonprofits and others to form strong partnerships within the city. This includes tackling important policy issues and building coalitions surrounding local transit, housing, homelessness, economic development and livability for the DTLA area.   

“I’ve seen incredible resilience and proactiveness from our team, Board of Directors and members. Despite all of the crises we face, we are all working together to continue advocating for a mobile, equitable and vibrant Downtown Los Angeles — and a strong public transportation network plays a key role in achieving this goal,” says President & CEO Jessica Lall, who shared her thoughts about the organization’s mission and the role that its partnership with Metrolink plays into the community.  

“Public transit has played a key role in Downtown Los Angeles’ transformation – it is what makes shopping, work, recreational and cultural institutions and entertainment so accessible. And not only is it a critical investment that attracts people around the region and world, it is a sustainable practice that decreases our carbon footprints and improves air quality.” She says of the accessibility of public transit downtown. Public transportation is key to a vibrant region where employees, workers and tourists can come and go as they please. Plus, Downtown is the transit hub for the city. I am proud to say that Downtown residents are more likely than others to commute without a car.” 

Lall described CCA’s additional efforts to improve the community. “I am proud of our business and city leaders who continue to partner with us in our virtual events to share important information on the pressing issues we face to intensify our advocacy efforts,” she says. “It’s great to see residents, visitors and businesses finding some relief through initiatives such as the ‘LA Al Fresco’ initiative. It shows how receptive our city is to opening our streets to more than just cars. Our members are thinking creatively to design workplaces that accommodate safe distancing for offices and creating tools like fever detection, contact tracing, touchless utility tools and more. It’s also been inspiring to see the Convention Center offer 8,000 meals per week for people in need.” 

Lall described CCA’s future efforts to work toward a safer, cleaner downtown Los Angeles. “Having safe streets means being less car-centric, which is incredibly important to the health of Los Angeles. Public transit leads to less traffic congestion and increased walkability so people can truly take advantage of what LA has to offer. It allows people to meet all their needs which will create a more equitable and sustainable city.” She concluded.  

Read more about CCA’s contributions to the city of Los Angeles.

Learn more about Metrolink’s SoCal Explorer program. 

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