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Old 08-17-2009, 10:51 PM
Location: Albuquerque
2 posts, read 37,095 times
Reputation: 13


Hi, I'm moving from New Mexico to LA for a job downtown and I need a place that's pretty cheap nearby. I need some help on safety in different areas.

I'm looking at this area that's just west of the 110, at South Columbia and 3rd Street:
369 South Columbia Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90017 - Google Maps

I've heard so far that Westlake (not westlake village) is pretty awful, but also that that western part of downtown is really nice. The specific building I'm looking at is called tuscani villas, but there are also other places in that same vertical strip by the freeway. How safe is that area?

I've got a pretty tight budget so there's only so much nice-ness I can afford...I'm not planning to walk around for miles in the middle of the night with my ipod buds in or anything. But it would be nice to be able to come home late and not worry about walking from my car to my apartment.

Thank you.
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Old 08-17-2009, 11:01 PM
Location: Los Angeles
56 posts, read 230,954 times
Reputation: 21
This looks like a very sincere post so i'll answer accordingly. I'm 23 and have lived in urban areas my whole life, i grew up in san francisco and also never have owned a car so i'm pretty much at the mercy of any city i'm in. I go out to spots downtown and in east hollywood like silverlake and echo park mostly at night and from my location in koreatown near wilshire and kingsley everything is ok within judgement. The area your considering is rough. I could be wrong, but I wouldn't recommend that area for somebody that's relatively concerned for their safety. Check more spots in koreatown, or even downtown has some cheaper deals on nice neighborhoods.
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Old 08-18-2009, 06:41 AM
4,261 posts, read 9,011,313 times
Reputation: 3262
I drove by to check it out tonight after work.

Its not a great area. You will not have to worry about walking to your car as you will always be parked in the garage at the building. There is no street parking as the whole area is apartments and there will not be a place to park most of the time.

Its an area thats trying to gentrify, but isn't half way there. If I were you, I'd stay at a motel for a few days and check the place out at around 7pm. You should find out who most of your neighbors are. Wierd thing is just a couple blocks away are very nice apartments....same area, but self contained, and unattainable to the shady and the poor. Also less than a couple blocks away is the LAPD Rampart Station.
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Old 08-18-2009, 09:25 AM
Location: South Bay
7,141 posts, read 19,532,036 times
Reputation: 3402
the building looks ok and since you are from new mexico, you must be pretty familiar with latin culture, so I'd venture to guess that you would be just fine. however, before heading out for any walks after dark, i would certainly get a good feel for the neighborhood just to see what kind of (if any) characters are in that area. it also looks like you might be able to walk to work if you work off of fig or flower.
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Old 08-18-2009, 11:48 AM
5,409 posts, read 11,543,356 times
Reputation: 2251
the further north you go the nicer it is. since you are closer to 3rd then its nicer. but the further west you go the uglier. the tuscan and the medici or whatever they are called are nice. but once you pass those few buildings the neighborhood is a sketch. plenty of people live in those buildings. they are even building new ones. the people that i have visited seem very happy. they only venture west during the day, but head east at all hours of the day. the areas west of those buildings are pretty dense. if you dont mind tons of people then check it out.
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Old 08-18-2009, 11:54 PM
Location: Albuquerque
2 posts, read 37,095 times
Reputation: 13
Hey everyone, thanks for your replies...thanks John for checking it out personally. I do like the building so I think I'll check the area out.

You all seem to know what's what so can I get your opinion on some areas downtown? I'm working at Spring and 3rd and so I've started looking at places around there. So here's what I know (or what I think I know) so far: The western part of downtown is nice, while skid row is not so good, and Main street is a good guideline to stay west of. I've also heard that the northwestern area around the Disney concert hall is great, but that the southwestern area around staples center is a little more sketchy.

Is any of that right? Thanks for your help.
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Old 08-19-2009, 12:54 AM
4,261 posts, read 9,011,313 times
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Downtown is rapdily changing, even with the depressed economy. If you like urban living, the area surrounding Spring and 3rd can be fine. So is much of the area around Staples Center actually. They just built a huge entertainment complex down there and it also has the only chain grocery store downtown(Ralphs).

There is actually quite a mix right now. So it sort of just depends. Spring and 3rd is near city hall and a block from the new police headquarters. A real mix of government buildings, restaurants, bars, and some homeless and low lifes.

FYI, if you live anywhere along the subway route its very easy to get to work as long as you don't mind walking 2-3 blocks. You can live near staples(subway station at Fig/7th), Los Feliz(subway station at Santa Monica/Vermont), and North Hollywood(Station near Burbank Bl/Lankershim Bl). You would exit at the Hill/1st subway station(I think called the civic center station) and walk two blocks east to spring and two blocks south to third. Or something like that

Anyway, much of downtown is pretty nice and lots of bars and nightlife, esp on weekends. It behoves you to check it out first though. Theres some nice lofts and still some sketchy areas.
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Old 08-19-2009, 04:17 PM
Location: Los Angeles
1,632 posts, read 2,398,522 times
Reputation: 1413
There was obvious drug dealing on 5th street between Broadway and Spring when I was in the area on July 18th. Again, last Saturday I walked from the Pershing Square station to Rite Aid (which was closed) at 7:45 and someone singled me out and not too quietly or discretly let me know he had Vicodin and Klonopin. Leif Garrett was arrested in the Pershing Square station after buying heroin and Brad Renfro was arrested buying heroin close by.
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Old 08-20-2009, 12:40 PM
Location: LA
304 posts, read 841,407 times
Reputation: 98
Welcome to LA!

Downtown LA is going to be way different from NM. But having said that, LA is vibrant and toward the Staples center is rapidly changing.

Lofts are appearing right and left. Cool buildings are going up. Developers are buying while property is cheap. There is a boatload of cash flying around this city these days due to the good prices. Try to get a security building at first so you dont scare yourself needlessly. Then explore!

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