Curbed Cup 2014: Curbed Cup Round 1: Santa Monica (7) vs. Fairfax (10)

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Here it is: the 2014 Curbed Cup race for the Los Angeles Neighborhood of the Year. Round one of our tournament features 16 ‘hoods vying for the coveted golden jpeg—we’ll have two matchups every day through Thursday, then take a look at our tournament bracket on Friday. Voting for each poll ends 24 hours after opening (and will be watched closely for any shenanigans). Let the neighborhood on neighborhood carnage begin!

The Third Street Promenade turned 25 this year and that was just the start of the car-free triumph in Santa Monica. The Expo Line has now been extended into SaMo (though it’ll be a while before it’s running), and there are all varieties of transit-oriented development popping up around the route, including a big makeover for the Bergamot Art Center. The city also got tired of waiting for Metro to move on a regional bike plan and decided to make their own, but meanwhile the Big Blue Bus decided it didn’t want people sitting at its stops. The Bergamot Transit Village continued to be a total shitshow. But the city that hasn’t gotten a new movie theater in decades will be getting two Arclights, and, in unrelated news, it now has the flagship Lululemon store that it just could not have possibly deserved more. Still not weed though.

LACMA is at the epicenter of Fairfax excitement, with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences moving swiftly ahead with their plans for a movie museum in one corner and starchitect Peter Zumthor designing a Wilshire-spanning new museum building in another. On top of all that, LACMA head Michael Govan, possibly the single most ambitious man in Los Angeles, wants to put up a museum/hotel/condo tower across from the museum, possibly designed by Frank Gehry. It’s all in anticipation of the Purple Line subway, which started construction this year after decades of delays.

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