Recap from our "Zoomposium" on Boulevards of Equity and Opportunity

Our first foray into virtual programming was a huge success with our "Zoomposium" on Boulevards of Equity and Opportunity. With 600+ unique viewers and 13 panelists that included CEO, founders, executive directors, and industry leaders, we had a robust conversation on a strategy to address the housing crisis without displacement, gentrification, and neighborhood disruption. 

The conversation started with presentations on opportunities to build transit and affordable housing by Metro CEO Phil Washington, UrbanFootprint co-founders Peter Calthorpe and Joe DiStefano, and Southern California Association of Governments Executive Director Kome Ajise. Vince Bertoni, Director of Planning for the City of LA, spoke about opportunities related to the built environment, as well as the history of redlining and top-down decisions made by the City of LA; and Metro's Countywide Planning and Development Senior Director Lauren Cencic spoke about Metro's vision for countywide Bus Rapid Transit (BRT). Other speakers and topics included:

  • Dr. Destiny Thomas addressed the issue of equity vs. justice and how we must not only address equity in the current system but replace an unjust system that resulted in the current inequities in housing, transit access and municipal services.
  • Nancy Pfeffer highlighted the challenges of bringing much-needed housing, public infrastructure, and public transit to the resource-poor Gateway Cities.
  • Tunua Thrash-Ntuk discussed the lack of funding and financing for affordable housing and the necessary conversation around minority ownership along these corridors.
  • Joan Ling spoke about the incredible funding gap we have to actually build all the affordable housing we need so that residents are no longer rent-burdened and aren't being displaced or made homeless by rising rents.
  • Romel Pascual talked about the joy he's witnessed during CicLAvia's events in so many LA communities, and how our quality of life is improved when streets are no longer just to serve cars but also serve people who can enjoy and thrive in their communities.
  • KeAndra Cylear Dodds offered her perspective on equity and how Metro's evaluation of transit projects can both help and harm those who live in the communities where they are built.
  • Cecilia Estolano provided a sum-up, saying that a more just and equitable society providing opportunity for all those in need must involve less D.A.D. (Decide, Announce, Defend) planning from government agencies and more M.O.M (Meaningful Organizing and Mobilizing).

We want to thank our fiscal sponsors: Community Partners, the Durfee Foundation, LA Metro, the Southern California Association of Governments, and UrbanFootprint. CLICK BELOW for links to the PPTs by the six speakers listed at the top of the page.

Presentation Slide Decks

  1. Phil Washington - Metro Update
  2. Peter Calthorpe - Scenarios Concept and Analysis (Part 1)
  3. Joe DiStefano - Scenarios Concept and Analysis (Part 2)
  4. Kome Ajise - SCAG Presentation
  5. Lauren Cencic - Countywide Bus Rapid Transit Vision & Principles Study
  6. Nancy Pfeffer - Arterial Corridors


  • Denny Zane, Executive Director, Move LA
  • Phil Washington, CEO, LA Metro
  • Cecilia Estolano, CEO, Estolano Advisors; Former Executive Director, Los Angeles Redevelopment Agency
  • Peter Calthorpe, Founder of UrbanFootprint
  • Joe DiStefano, Founder and CEO of UrbanFootprint
  • Kome Ajise, Executive Director, Southern California Association of Governments
  • Destiny Thomas, Founder & CEO, Thrivance Group
  • Vince Bertoni, Director of Planning, City of Los Angeles
  • Lauren Cencic, Senior Director, Countywide Planning and Development, LA Metro
  • Nancy Pfeffer, Executive Director, Gateway Cities Council of Governments
  • Tunua Thrash-Ntuk, Executive Director, LA’s Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC)
  • Joan Ling, Lecturer, UCLA Urban Planning; Former Executive Director of Community Corporation/affordable housing developer;
  • Romel Pascual, Executive Director, CicLAvia 
  • KeAndra Cylear Dodds, Executive Officer, Equity and Race at Los Angeles Metro
  • Eli Lipmen
    published this page in Blog 2020-07-23 13:26:23 -0700

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