Committee presents alternative residential housing opportunities in L.A.

Committee presents alternative residential housing opportunities in L.A.


AIA|LA here


AIA|LA Urban Design Committee presents By Right/By Discretion/By Design: Alternative Residential Housing Opportunities in Los Angeles.


When: Wednesday, March 20, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Where: AIA Los Angeles, 3780 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 800, Los Angeles, CA 90010


Guest Speakers:

Ric Abramson, AIA - Workplays studio architecture 

Liz Falletta - USC Price School of Public Policy


For the past half-century, Los Angeles residential housing has been driven by complicated interactions between design, planning and development interests operating in isolation.  Led by desires for ease of approval using strict adherence prescriptive zoning and building code requirements (“by-right”) or for negotiated solutions that seek development relief from perceived economic forces (“by-discretion”) both have resulted in less than desirable outcomes.     


This discussion re-examines some of the long-standing assumptions and conventional drivers often associated with infill housing solutions and instead proposes alternative “trade-off” typologies by-design that begin to link these interests as well as neighborhood interests in a more comprehensive manner.   


The two-part discussion will  be led by Liz Falletta, assistant professor at the USC Price School of Public Policy, and Ric Abramson, AIA architect and current board secretary of the AIA/LA Chapter.  In Part A, Falletta will contrast a historic example of urban infill multi-unit housing through the lens of “by-right” and “by-design” approaches.  In Part B, Abramson will look at the developer’s “by-right” or “by discretion” mindsets that can be reshaped using “by-design” strategies that allow for more effective residential neighborhood solutions.


By-right, by-discretion, and by-design need not be understood as three disparate approaches to developing the built environment.  Urban neighborhoods can evolve through an expanded field of options within which propriety trumps expediency and environmental responsiveness upends pure convenience.   


For more information, please contact:

Will Wright, Hon. AIA|LA

Director, Government and Public Affairs

RSVP to There is a limited capacity.


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