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LA now is nothing like New York of the 1920's and never will be, nor will LA ever reach the culture and development of great global cities like New York, LA, Paris, Berlin, Moscow, Sydney, etc. Plain and simple, LA is not that great...San Francisco will always be better.

How do you figure?

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Well then, either your imagination sucks, or you have a terrible understanding of New York and history. I assume its a mix of both.

LA now is nothing like New York of the 1920's and never will be, nor will LA ever reach the culture and development of great global cities like New York, LA, Paris, Berlin, Moscow, Sydney, etc. Plain and simple, LA is not that great...San Francisco will always be better.

LA is only good for the Olympics and Hollywood.

So, is it LA great or not? re-read your post.

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"Always" being twice. Let's not pretend this is a more commonly recurring theme. Especially since LA bid multiple times before winning which isn't the case here.

More than that, the United States and LA may or may not be asked to save the Olympics here. Paris might be the city to accomplish that. Again, it's circumstance and a matter of timing that leaves us with LA over Chicago and New York. For better or worse, maybe there is some truth to the idea that it simply is the most ideal host for an Olympics in this country, even though there are more cities out there the United States has to offer.

The Olympics have only been in serious danger twice. Now there is danger for a third time, and again, we see LA being the most realistic "savior". I hope Paris can do it though so that maybe a new US city can host.

So, is it LA great or not? re-read your post.

Notice, my more recent post when I addressed that typo.

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LA now is nothing like New York of the 1920's and never will be, nor will LA ever reach the culture and development of great global cities like New York, LA, Paris, Berlin, Moscow, Sydney, etc. Plain and simple, LA is not that great...San Francisco will always be better.

LA is only good for the Olympics and Hollywood.

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Edited by paul
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I'm asking the same question.

Yeah, I'm wondering what he's basing this on.

That's an interesting comment. Los Angeles at that time was a city of over 500k at that time. Very young still. It's a long way from there now. It's history is loaded with adversity yet continually has grown into a region of almost 18 million long eclipsing its rivals both in terms of population and GDP. It has the distinction of its bid rivals of not being a Capitol, not a financial center and not the center of Fortune 500 companies in the region. By those accounts LA is unlike its rivals and every top 10 global city, yet, it's a top global city. It's very existence is owed to imagination, ingenuity, and creativity. There's a lot to be said about LA in that regard. It's a one of a kind top 10 global city.

In the Global Cities Index, Los Ángeles ranks #6, above Sydney (#15) and well above San Francisco (#22).

Source: A.T. Kearney Global Cities Index 2015

I've mentioned it before on this thread, but LA is a major manufacturing center with a very diverse economy. It's also very ethnically diverse, and a major cultural center, education center, etc.

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Yeah, I'm wondering what he's basing this on.

In the Global Cities Index, Los Ángeles ranks #6, above Sydney (#15) and well above San Francisco (#22).

Source: A.T. Kearney Global Cities Index 2015

I've mentioned it before on this thread, but LA is a major manufacturing center with a very diverse economy. It's also very ethnically diverse, and a major cultural center, education center, etc.

The global index, as has been discussed to death on these forums, is not a real indicator of cities and their "greatness".

Everything I've said is completely subjective, for me personally, and I should've said this earlier, I do not believe that LA is currently, ever was, or ever will be at the same status of other great cities like New York, London, Paris, etc.

For me, much of this stems from LA's lack of history. This bridge will of course close over time, but the sense of history and purpose overflows in cities like New York and London. In part this is because these cities were and are the centers of vast global empires. Their streets have seen not just their own history play out, but the history of their nations. Their citizens have come to define the identities and histories of their nations, and I personally do not think that LA will ever be able to compare to those other cities in this regard.

Please do not get me wrong, LA certainly has its fair share of influence and is undoubtedly America's current pop culture heart beat, but it is New York that is truly and iconicly 'American' in the same way London is 'British' and Paris is 'French'.

Thirdly, from an architectural/physical perspective, LA can not compare to other cities. Rather than being a city filled with monuments to history and everyday people, or filled with iconic buildings with backstory's as rich as their paint, or even areas where people can really live the good life. LA is simply a massive version of your typical American city with a few buildings here and there that are iconic, but hardly natural. Their backstory is one of yearning greatness rather than cold ambition or historical anecdotes.

LA simply is too new to really be a 'great' city. The vibe I get when I go to LA is a longing to be like others or to copy or an obsession with being great. It's a far cry from the self confidence of Paris, the determination of London, or the "no-stops on the train to the sky" ambition of New York. Maybe it will be there one day, but I would hardly say it is their now or that it is truly comparable to the other 'greats'.

San Francisco is just San Francisco. Rich in history, culture, architecture, and in some places; natural-untouched beauty. Same with Sydney.

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In the Global Cities Index, Los Ángeles ranks #6, above Sydney (#15) and well above San Francisco (#22).

Source: A.T. Kearney Global Cities Index 2015

I've mentioned it before on this thread, but LA is a major manufacturing center with a very diverse economy. It's also very ethnically diverse, and a major cultural center, education center, etc.

Good for LA. What does that mean for them in terms of an Olympic bid, especially considering the city they're up against is higher on that list than LA?

I'm with bernham.. let's not get into these discussions of global cities lists because they mean little to nothing when it comes to Olympic bidding.

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I think LA is a "great" city.

It's an

The global index, as has been discussed to death on these forums, is not a real indicator of cities and their "greatness".

Everything I've said is completely subjective, for me personally, and I should've said this earlier, I do not believe that LA is currently, ever was, or ever will be at the same status of other great cities like New York, London, Paris, etc.

For me, much of this stems from LA's lack of history. This bridge will of course close over time, but the sense of history and purpose overflows in cities like New York and London. In part this is because these cities were and are the centers of vast global empires. Their streets have seen not just their own history play out, but the history of their nations. Their citizens have come to define the identities and histories of their nations, and I personally do not think that LA will ever be able to compare to those other cities in this regard.

Please do not get me wrong, LA certainly has its fair share of influence and is undoubtedly America's current pop culture heart beat, but it is New York that is truly and iconicly 'American' in the same way London is 'British' and Paris is 'French'.

Thirdly, from an architectural/physical perspective, LA can not compare to other cities. Rather than being a city filled with monuments to history and everyday people, or filled with iconic buildings with backstory's as rich as their paint, or even areas where people can really live the good life. LA is simply a massive version of your typical American city with a few buildings here and there that are iconic, but hardly natural. Their backstory is one of yearning greatness rather than cold ambition or historical anecdotes.

LA simply is too new to really be a 'great' city. The vibe I get when I go to LA is a longing to be like others or to copy or an obsession with being great. It's a far cry from the self confidence of Paris, the determination of London, or the "no-stops on the train to the sky" ambition of New York. Maybe it will be there one day, but I would hardly say it is their now or that it is truly comparable to the other 'greats'.


San Francisco is just San Francisco. Rich in history, culture, architecture, and in some places; natural-untouched beauty. Same with Sydney.

Gotta love it when people turn subjectivity into objectivity.

LA is indeed a "great" city.

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It is rather weird that the most distinctive feature of LA is the remains of a defunct real-estate advertising sign.

You obviously don't know much about LA, if you think that a sign is its most distinctive feature. Reminds me of a girl I used to work with, who has never been to San Francisco, and after a recent trip I took there, she asked me "so what's the big deal about San Francisco? So it has a bridge, so what." I didn't even bother telling her that there's more to SF than just the Golden Gate Bridge.

The global index, as has been discussed to death on these forums, is not a real indicator of cities and their "greatness".

Maybe not to you, and frankly not to me either, but it's an indicator of its economic and cultural global outreach/importance/influence. It's an indicator of how it contributes to the global economy.

For me, much of this stems from LA's lack of history. This bridge will of course close over time, but the sense of history and purpose overflows in cities like New York and London. In part this is because these cities were and are the centers of vast global empires. Their streets have seen not just their own history play out, but the history of their nations. Their citizens have come to define the identities and histories of their nations, and I personally do not think that LA will ever be able to compare to those other cities in this regard.

Please do not get me wrong, LA certainly has its fair share of influence and is undoubtedly America's current pop culture heart beat, but it is New York that is truly and iconicly 'American' in the same way London is 'British' and Paris is 'French'.

LA simply is too new to really be a 'great' city. The vibe I get when I go to LA is a longing to be like others or to copy or an obsession with being great. It's a far cry from the self confidence of Paris, the determination of London, or the "no-stops on the train to the sky" ambition of New York. Maybe it will be there one day, but I would hardly say it is their now or that it is truly comparable to the other 'greats'.

San Francisco is just San Francisco. Rich in history, culture, architecture, and in some places; natural-untouched beauty. Same with Sydney.

How are San Francisco and Sydney any more historic, rich in culture, etc., than LA? LA was founded as a Spanish Pueblo in 1781, and prior to that, was a collection of native Tongva villages. Saying LA has no history is like saying Florida has no history.

It's obvious that that really is your subjective opinion, which is fine, we're all entitled to our own opinions. But like the other guy and his "sign" comment, it leads me to think that you don't really know much about LA.

Edited by ejaycat
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Good for LA. What does that mean for them in terms of an Olympic bid, especially considering the city they're up against is higher on that list than LA?

I'm with bernham.. let's not get into these discussions of global cities lists because they mean little to nothing when it comes to Olympic bidding.

But uh, looking at these threads, isn't that often brought up when cities want to bid for a summer Olympics, namely how well-known a city is globally? Isn't this why everyone was kind of surprised when the USOC initially put up Boston as its candidate city? It's like you guys contradict yourselves. Someone condescendingly dismisses LA, yet when someone else points out that it's actually an economically and culturally significant city, then all of sudden, that's irrelevant to a conversation that was initially brought up by the people that were dismissing it in the first place.

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But uh, looking at these threads, isn't that often brought up when cities want to bid for a summer Olympics, namely how well-known a city is globally? Isn't this why everyone was kind of surprised when the USOC initially put up Boston as its candidate city? It's like you guys contradict yourselves. Someone condescendingly dismisses LA, yet when someone else points out that it's actually an economically and culturally significant city, then all of sudden, that's irrelevant to a conversation that was initially brought up by the people that were dismissing it in the first place.

Most here were surprised because Boston was a terrible candidate for an Olympic bid. And everyone other than the Boston organizers and apparently the USOC knew it. Which is why few were surprised the way the bid completely flamed out. But none of that has anything to do with where Boston sits on lists ranking global cities or the city's international recognition. It's all the technical details that should have made it a non-starter in the first place and should have made LA the pick from the start. Look at the list and ask yourself if it has any bearing at all on a city's prospects for hosting an Olympics. Not really. New York is a more well-known city globally than LA, but which is better suited for an Olympic bid? Not even a contest, and I say that as an arrogant New Yorker.

So yea, someone here condescendingly dismissed LA. That's 1 person who thinks LA is blah. LA's economic and cultural prestige is anything but irrelevant, but why is it the nature of this forum for people to get so defensive when 1 person makes a comment like that and the rebuttal is "here, look at these statistics that show that LA is great and you're full of crap." Either way, getting into the minutiae of lists and other nitty gritty like that says little about LA's prospects of hosting an Olympics. They've hosted twice before. They are very much a known entity with the IOC and don't need to prove their worth to be considered. Nor would a head-to-head contest against Paris (speaking of world-renown cities) be decided on the basis of those details.

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You obviously don't know much about LA, if you think that a sign is its most distinctive feature. Reminds me of a girl I used to work with, who has never been to San Francisco, and after a recent trip I took there, she asked me "so what's the big deal about San Francisco? So it has a bridge, so what." I didn't even bother telling her that there's more to SF than just the Golden Gate Bridge.

But "most distinctive" pretty much by definition means "what people who don't know much about a place think of when asked to name something distinctive about it". It's up to LA to change that perception for the global market.

Just saying...

Screen-shot-2012-02-22-at-18.51.50.png

But the Eiffel Tower was already several decades old when that sign was put up, and probably nobody would remember that there had ever been an advert on there for a few years if it hadn't been the largest in the world.

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Maybe not to you, and frankly not to me either, but it's an indicator of its economic and cultural global outreach/importance/influence. It's an indicator of how it contributes to the global economy.

Houston ranks high on that list, but that doesn't mean it's a 'great city'. Hell, Houston is the nations third largest city and next to the Port of Louisiana it is second in shipping...doesn't mean it's 'great'. People, history, art, culture, etc. are what make a city 'great'.

Though, as Quaker said, the IOC does not really look at that. I was adressing the comment someone made about LA being the next New York or some BS.

Do not get me wrong, the IOC knows and loves LA, and LA will host in 2028. However, that doesn't mean LA is the next New York or that it is currently stuck in the same position as someone's fantasy of 1920's New York. LA will never be New York.

But uh, looking at these threads, isn't that often brought up when cities want to bid for a summer Olympics, namely how well-known a city is globally? Isn't this why everyone was kind of surprised when the USOC initially put up Boston as its candidate city? It's like you guys contradict yourselves. Someone condescendingly dismisses LA, yet when someone else points out that it's actually an economically and culturally significant city, then all of sudden, that's irrelevant to a conversation that was initially brought up by the people that were dismissing it in the first place.

Boston shocked us because Boston, from an Olympic/technical perspective was not the right choice, especially compared to the superiority of Los Angeles. Keep in mind I say this from an Olympic hosting perspective.

How are San Francisco and Sydney any more historic, rich in culture, etc., than LA? LA was founded as a Spanish Pueblo in 1781, and prior to that, was a collection of native Tongva villages. Saying LA has no history is like saying Florida has no history.

It's obvious that that really is your subjective opinion, which is fine, we're all entitled to our own opinions. But like the other guy and his "sign" comment, it leads me to think that you don't really know much about LA.

You've been to those cities before right? Or at least San Francisco? Their history survives, LA didn't really become a city until the 20's and nothing really remains of its previous history.

Go to San Francisco or Sydney or any of those other cities and the history survives, you can see it and touch it. You can't really do that with LA.

My current living city is Baton Rouge. It has a 300 year history, but much of it is gone and the city, despite its economic influence in the Gulf Coast is hardly a 'great' Southern city.

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Houston ranks high on that list, but that doesn't mean it's a 'great city'. Hell, Houston is the nations third largest city...

Not that it matters in the context that this is being discussed, but Houston is the nations fourth largest city, not third.

Though, as Quaker said, the IOC does not really look at that. I was adressing the comment someone made about LA being the next New York or some BS.

And that's really the crux here. It's not a matter that someone "condescendingly dismisses L.A." (though that's exactly what some in this thread actually do with Paris. Talk about "contradicting"), but it's all the L.A. hyperbole that goes on here.

We all don't need to be "sold" on how economically & culturally significant L.A. is. And if we did, then is L.A. really isn't any of those things TBW. We already know what L.A. has to offer. The IOC already knows what L.A. has to offer (It's not like we're talking about a Tulsa here)!

But will any of that mean diddly squat come vote time, cuz I seriously doubt that any of those attributes would be the primary reasons why the IOC would vote for a certain city. It helps, but it's so much more than that when it comes to the fastidious IOC (& especially when we're talking about a two-time host that last hosted as recent as 1984). And THAT'S what will really count, & what some won't understand cuz they're all too busy standing behind all of the L.A. bombastic rhetoric.

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And that's really the crux here. It's not a matter that someone "condescendingly dismisses L.A." (though that's exactly what some in this thread actually do with Paris. Talk about "contradicting"), but it's all the L.A. hyperbole that goes on here.

We all don't need to be "sold" on how economically & culturally significant L.A. is. And if we did, then is L.A. really isn't any of those things TBW. We already know what L.A. has to offer. The IOC already knows what L.A. has to offer (It's not like we're talking about a Tulsa here)!

But will any of that mean diddly squat come vote time, cuz I seriously doubt that any of those attributes would be the primary reasons why the IOC would vote for a certain city. It helps, but it's so much more than that when it comes to the fastidious IOC (& especially when we're talking about a two-time host that last hosted as recent as 1984). And THAT'S what will really count, & what some won't understand cuz they're all too busy standing behind all of the L.A. bombastic rhetoric.

Exactly. I'll say it again.. this is why it's almost futile to measure up these cities in a vacuum. For all that attributes that LA possesses that may or may not make it a great city or a worth Olympic host, what's the point in trying to justify what LA is or isn't? Or where it ranks on some list? At the end of the city, LA will be up against the other cities in the running and they'll get measured up. Is LA's back-story on their place in the world a part of that evaluation? Absolutely. It does little to no good though to compare LA to New York or San Francisco or Sydney or London or whoever else is NOT bidding for the 2024 Olympics. And again, for all the minutiae about what makes for a great city or how they measure up to each other, the most important thing (aside from the usual geo-politics which can't really be avoided) is how does it measure up as a potential Olympic host. For better or worse, their position on that one is largely unrivaled in this country.

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I wouldn't really call the Hollywood sign a "feature." I mean, the thing's been closed to public access for years now.

That's what it was. I couldn' for the life of me recall what JMark was referring to in the first place.

LA is OK; especially in the winter. And the West side, Beverly HIlls, Westwood, Santa MOnica are all real nice communities any time of year. But just personally speaking, the vehicular, horizontal lifestyle w/ things so far apart, is just not my cup of tea.

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You've been to those cities before right? Or at least San Francisco?

I've been to San Francisco, dozens of times, and still go there on the occasional long weekend. Sydney, I've never been.

Their history survives, LA didn't really become a city until the 20's and nothing really remains of its previous history. Go to San Francisco or Sydney or any of those other cities and the history survives, you can see it and touch it. You can't really do that with LA.

OK this statement is absolutely false. The other things you said were your opinion, which is fine. And for the record, I don't give a flying turd if LA hosts the Olympics in 2024 or ever again.

But you can indeed see and touch LA's history. And, LA didn't just instantly become a city in the 1920s.

After LA became an incorporated American city in 1850 after being a Spanish, then later a Mexican, pueblo, LA developed like the typical small American town, growing into a small city of a little over 102,000 people by 1900.

LA circa 1900. See the Hamburger's Department Store? It's in a building that was built in 1887. Hamburger's is what later became The May Company.

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USC Archive

LA in 1900 looked like it could've been Cleveland in 1900. But Cleveland had a bigger population at that time, over 381,000 people

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Not a highrise city, but a dense downtown circa 1900. A lot of those structures would be demolished for various reasons... earthquakes, street widenings/street grid realignments, to create parking lots, or simply because the buildings were considered old and outdated.

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USC Archive

Hollingsworth Building, circa 1906.

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Circa 1900. See the wooden Victorian structure on the right? That was replaced by the Hollingsworth Building. The Jevne Company building and the Hayward Hotel still exist. The Methodist Episcopal Church is long gone.

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Metro Library Archive

City Hall under construction, circa 1927. 19th Century LA is giving way to 20th Century LA. Old Victorian-era structures would be demolished, the street grid would be realigned and straightened, streets would be widened, all because of the automobile. By 1920, LA had around 576,000 people, and had taken to the automobile a lot earlier than most cities.

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By the time LA hosted the 1932 Summer Olympics, it had a population of well over 1.2 million people, according to the 1930 Census. This building still exists, by the way.

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A rainy day downtown, 1940s.

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USC Archive

The same intersection.

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The Continental Building, on the left, was built in 1903. In fact, downtown contains a lot of buildings circa turn of the 20th Century, 1890s-1910s. Since around 2000, a lot of these old buildings have been turned into housing. Downtown LA's population has significantly increased since then, not including the homeless.

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The Alexandria Hotel was built in 1906. This was taken downtown on a Sunday morning, during the Historic Core Farmers Market.

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This area used to be so sketchy just even 10 or 12 years ago.

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Sorry for the photo overload, but I have insomnia right now, so I thought I may as well keep myself busy to help me fall sleep. :P But anyway, though a lot has indeed been torn down in LA, a lot of old buildings still do exist downtown, pre-1920s and post-1880s.

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If that LA exists, they need to market that rather than the modern overload that is typically marketed.

Though FYI and Quaker are right, none of this really matters when the IOC votes. It's all going to come down to who has the best plans and offers the most benefits to the IOC. At this point in time, Paris is shaping up to be that city and LA will host in 2028.


I'll be honest though, didn't realize that much survived in LA during the 50s and 60s post-modern architecture boom. Very beautiful pics, thanks for sharing them.

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Olympic boss Thomas Bach says Donald Trump presidency wouldn't hurt LA bid for 2024 Games.

https://twitter.com/LATimesWharton

That kind of depends doesn't it?

If Donald Trump wins the Presidency in November and it turns out he was actually serious about his ban on Muslims entering the country, then LA's bid will be dead in the water.

Edited by Rob.
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When Versailles was built (the equastrian venue for the Paris 2024 bid), LA didn't even exist. King Louis VIX went from Paris to Versailles, because Paris was becoming too busy of a city, too dangerous, too noisy (well back then people had already been living in Paris for more than 2000). So please, don't even bother about "LA history" here. That's not going to make them win. An american bid is NEVER going to win over a European bid based on their history.

And anyway, if you really think the IOC voters vote according to the city's history.......

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