As part of National Community Planning Month, APA's (American Planning Association) Great Places in America program recognizes streets, neighborhoods, and public spaces in the United States demonstrating exceptional character, quality, and planning-attributes that enrich communities, facilitate economic growth, and inspire others around the country.
The national designation will be given to Olvera Street at the Kiosko Plaza at El Pueblo De Los Angeles Historical Monument during the National Community Planning Month celebration.
The Great Neighborhoods, Great Streets, and Great Public Spaces of 2015 are places that are unique and exemplary in their amenities and infrastructure, cultural identity, and use of sustainable and innovative practices.
A small pedestrian path lined with shops and food stalls, Olvera Street is located in one of the oldest sections of Los Angeles and an emblem of the city's diverse cultural heritage.
Originally a Mexican farming and ranching community centered in Los Angeles, Olvera Street and its adjacent plaza gradually became neglected. In 1930, Olvera Street was renovated and reopened as a Mexican marketplace and symbolic birthplace of the city.
The City of Los Angeles has continued to work at preserving Olvera Street through careful planning, zoning, and classification of the street as a historic resource. Ongoing preservation funding continues the efforts of restoring the surrounding area and supporting the small businesses on the street. Olvera Street represents a core part of the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historic Monument, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The street hosts a number of cultural events, including the annual Blessing of the Animals, Dia de los Muertos, and Cinco de Mayo celebration.