How would you stimulate the Eastside economy?

Congress got closer to approving a $789 billion economic stimulus package Wednesday. But our City Hall leaders already had some ideas on how to spend some of that money weeks in advance. All they want is about $7 billion to fund all or part of what are called “shovel-ready” or “ready-to-go” public works projects that can get started and people working within 180 days.

This wish-list (an early version in PDF format) includes citywide projects, like street improvements, as well as requests from the school district (didn’t they just get billions from another bond?). Also included are some neighborhood specific requests, like $17 million for something called the Taylor Yards Transit Village near Cypress Park; $8.4 million to rebuild the Lincoln Pool and Bathhouse in Lincoln Heights; $3 million for the L.A. River Bike Path through Council District 13; $2.3 million to repair and renovate the basement at the Echo Park Recreation Center; and $27 million for the First Street Viaduct and Bridge in Boyle Heights.

It’s not clear how much of the $7 billion the city is seeking will ever come our way. But, since no one asked me or any other residents that I know to propose some shovel-ready projects, I might as well start my own wish-list. Feel free to add others to the Eastside Pet Peeve Economic Stimulus Program:

* Repaint/demolish the “Los Feos” McMansions across the street from me.

You can also vote on individual projects on a website called Stimulus Watch.

Top photo by Richelle Antipolo via Flickr

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