Cool Places of LA: West Adams / by charles desrochers

The other day I visited this part of Mid-City I had never been in before called West Adams and never really venturing much into this part of town since most of my work and social life are limited to the edges of town I don't usually have an excuse. Because I'm all about free stuff I went to the Peace Awareness Garden and Labyrinth in West Adams, which was a nice trip and I suggest anyone who has the afternoon free go check it out. The multi leveled garden itself was extremely serene with some koi ponds and nooks for quiet sitting or meditation but what struck me most was the neighborhood this place was in.

Apparently the organization is held in a house that has stood since the 1910's, which is incredibly old for Los Angeles. The complex itself was a strange metamorphosis of all the building trends that have existed in the city since it's original construction. The main house is a beautiful Craftsmen style mansion with modern additions of giant windowed sunrooms from the 50's and 60's and then also on the lot are stucko style apartment buildings for members of the congregation that live on the grounds. All along Adams Boulevard are similar houses that are now taken over by fringe and mainstream religions alike and peppered amongst them are condos and apartment homes.

It possibly has the most striking diversity in the city for the sheer sake that the plots of land are so much bigger than say Silverlake or West Hollywood. One thing that's even more amazing about this neighborhood is that it experienced a transition of sorts from very affluent White Los Angeles, Wikipedia says this is one of its oldest neighborhoods, to affluent African-American and now Latino-American community. While Crenshaw and Watts and were burning in the riots of the 90's this neighborhood somehow managed to be untouched despite being next to Jefferson Park, which is considered one of the poorest neighborhoods in all of the city.