River LA, formerly the Los Angeles River Revitalization Corporation, has posted a video interview with Frank Gehry about his work on the LA River revitalization project. The nonprofit organization works to build public support for the project.
“I think when I started it I had trepidation,” Gehry begins. “I had the feeling that it was more major than I was thinking of it.”
He goes on the explain that “the river is a complicated organism”, and therefore the project has mainly comprised in-depth research up to this point. “Like any design problem I had to really study it,” he states.
According to Gehry, a quarter of Californians live within 30 miles of the river, which underscores both its importance and potential. “To ignore this is to ignore one of the great resources of the region,” he states.
The appointment of Gehry as the lead architect of the LA river revitalization has been controversial. Long-time advocates for the project have expressed feeling left out of the decision, which some believe is more a PR-move than anything else. Likely in part in response to this criticism, Gehry and his studio have published their research, which is available here, and worked hard to gather community input.