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AIA|LA Legislative Day at City Hall 2020

December 3, 2020 @ 8:00 am - 5:00 pm PST

AIA LA Legislative Day at City Hall: Connecting Architects & Designers with Civic Leadership

This year, we will be meeting virtually with our civic leaders at City Hall.

Historically, AIA LA’s premier annual advocacy event has been our annual Legislative Day at City Hall, which began in 1999 when Michael Lehrer, FAIA was President-elect of AIA Los Angeles. With greater emphasis going towards promoting initiatives that highlight best-practices and underscore AIA|LA’s core values of inclusion, mobility, social equity, housing affordability and resilience, and as a direct result of our recent strategic planning process, we are revitalizing this important day at City Hall to make it as inclusive as possible for all AIA members to participate.

The primary objective of AIA LA Legislative Day at City Hall is to highlight the leadership of the architecture & design profession, as well as, to help advance planning and land-use goals, zoning and building code innovations, urban design guidelines and other regulatory concerns that impact the built and natural environment of the Los Angeles region, including ensuring that we are able to build more housing opportunities for all Angelenos while preventing further displacement.

AIA LA Legislative Day at City Hall will also serve as a way to celebrate programs and strategies that are working well to ensure that neighborhoods are complete communities with a well-balanced housing-to-jobs ratio and integrated with a diversity of incomes and cultures.

Available to join us?

Register to each meeting that you’d like to join.

AIA LA Legislative Day at City Hall

Our annual Legislative Day at City Hall is scheduled for Thursday, December 3rd and will be transformed into a virtual event this year.  We will also be organizing additional meetings on November 30, December 1, and December 4.   If you’d like to get more involved in helping to shape our biggest advocacy event of the year, then please reach out to me at will@aialosangeles.org.  The complete list of confirmed meetings to date include:

Monday, November 30 (2pm) – Councilmember Kevin De Leon – Council District 14, City of Los Angeles


Tuesday, December 1 (3pm) – Councilmember Gil Cedillo – – Council District 1, City of Los Angeles


Thursday, December 3 – (several concurrent meetings)

9am to 10am – Mayor’s Office of Planning & Real Estate Development


9:30am to 10am – Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell – – Council District 13, City of Los Angeles


10am to 11am – Osama Younan – General Manager, Los Angeles Department of Building & Safety


10:30am to 11:30am – John L. Reamer, Jr. – Inspector of Public Works, Bureau of Contract Administration


11am to 12pm – Office of Councilmember Joe Buscaino – Council District 15, City of Los Angeles


11am to 12pm – Ann Sewill – General Manger, Housing + Community Investment Department (HCIDLA)


12:30pm to 1:30pm – Councilmember Curren D. Price, Jr. – Council District 9, City of Los Angeles


1:00pm – 2:00pm – Councilmember Bob Blumenfield – Council District 3, City of Los Angeles


2:00pm to 2:30pm – Ron Galperin – Controller, City of Los Angeles


3:00pm to 3:30pm – Office of Councilmember Paul Koretz – Council District 5, City of Los Angeles


3:00pm to 4:00pm – Gary Lee Moore, P.E. & Deborah Weintraub, AIA  – Bureau of Engineering, City of Los Angeles


Friday, December 4

10:00am to 11:00am – Adel H. Hagekhalil, P.E., BCEE – Executive Director, Bureau of Street Services, Department of Public Works


11:00am to 12:00pm – Councilmember Paul Krekorian – Council District 2, City of Los Angeles


2:00pm to 3:00pm – Office of Councilmember Mike Bonin // Krista Kline – Deputy Chief of Staff, Council District #11


3:00pm to 4:00pm – Councilmember-elect Nithya Raman – Council District 4, City of Los Angeles


Monday, December 7 (4:00pm – 5:00pm) – Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson – Council District 8, City of Los Angeles


Tuesday, December 8 (1:00pm – 2:00pm) – Vince Bertoni – Director, Los Angeles City Planning


Wednesday, December 9 (12:00pm – 12:45pm) – Office of Council President Nury Martinez – Council District 6, City of Los Angeles


Thursday, December 10 (1:30pm – 2:15pm) – Mayor Eric Garcettimore details forthcoming


Thursday, December 10 (3:00pm – 4:00pm) – Councilmember John S. Lee – Council District 12, City of Los Angeles


Tuesday, December 15 (9:15am – 10:00am) – Mayor’s Office of Sustainability


and more meetings to be announced….


The 2020 AIA LA Advocacy Platform

Issue #1: Zero Code for Los Angeles, California

To advocate our support, along with AIA CA’s endorsement, of the 2022 Zero Code for California and to request that the City of LA adopt it as a reach code in 2021. This will align us with AIA CA advocacy and demonstrate LA architects’ desire to be leaders on climate action.

Issue #2: A True Streamline To Faster Housing Production

Part One: To advocate that LA City Council invest in software modernization for LADBS to facilitate 100% digital plan-check in the spirit of resilience, efficiency, cost-and-time savings, and greater compatibility with the tools and resources utilized by the private sector (architect, contractor, LADBS: all talking on the same interface).

Part Two: To advocate for very specific improvements to simplify and streamline LA City Planning’s entitlement and permitting process, especially for affordable housing.

  • Establish a Dedicated Unit of Affordable Housing Case Managers
  • Simplify the Process, eliminate antiquated or redundant requirements, raise the site plan threshold to 100 units, an allow for electronic versions of signatures and approval stamps in order to facilitate the Ready to Issue process
  • Allow for Alternative Compliance Approvals at the Staff Level

The 2019 AIA LA Advocacy Platform

The 2018 AIA LA Advocacy Platform

Strategic objectives include:

  • To change the nature of the architecture profession and inspire architects to become more civically engaged, i.e., to be a designer and a citizen are one and the same.
  • To change the culture of our City and our civic leadership: architects and system-wide design-thinking needs to become a more integral aspect of their mental landscape.

We aim to achieve this by creating:

  1. An open and inclusive initiative that is strategically programmed with relevant and progressive action-items and policy platforms, which will further connect the shared values of a multi-disciplinary group of architects, urban designers, city planners and policymakers to help make a healthier, more beautiful and more highly functional Los Angeles region.
  2. A committed group of task-force member volunteers (Political Outreach Committee) comprised of architects that establish an annual slate of issue briefs and policy recommendations.
  3. Targeted ‘virtual’ meetings with council members, deputy mayors, general managers, and commissioners. We aim to schedule the critical mass of these meetings on one day (December 3, 2020) at Los Angeles City Hall. However, additional meetings will be coordinated throughout the year with more public agencies throughout the region, such as METRO, Los Angeles County, LAUSD and the cities of Culver City, West Hollywood, Santa Monica, Inglewood, Beverly Hills, etc.

Will you join us?
To be successful, AIA|LA Legislative Day at City Hall will rely on a committed group of AIA members to serve as a critical leadership resource. If you’re interested in getting more involved, please RSVP to will@aialosangeles.org to receive more details.

To prepare for December 3rd, we will organize a virtual de-briefing roundtable discussion in advance to share our annual advocacy platform and bring everyone up to speed on how to best prepare for our annual Legislative Day at City Hall.

To discover which City Council District you live in, check online HERE.

Please note:  this is an exclusive opportunity for AIA members, AIA Associates, and AIA Allied Affiliated Members.  If you’d like to join the AIA, then please CLICK HERE for more details.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Will Wright

The Leadership of the AIA|LA Political Outreach Committee:


Jose Herrasti, AIA – Principal, MUTUO

Jose is one of the principals at M u t u o, established in Los Angeles in 2014. Jose’s professional experience includes work in small studios & large corporate firms both in Mexico & the United States, including the office of Roberto Sheinberg in Mexico City, HOK in Mexico City & San Francisco, and Eric Owen Moss Architects in Los Angeles. Jose moved to Los Angeles in 2001 to work at Eric Owen Moss Architects where he participated in several international cutting-edge projects, competitions & exhibits.

Jose is interested in blurring the lines of our profession’s boundaries to proactively create meaningful impact through architecture. Through M u t u o, he has been searching for opportunities to foster collaborations and expand the traditional roles of the architecture firm into a more dynamic role with bigger influence on creating built environments and solving complex city challenges.
One of Jose’s interests is to use design as a catalyst for social impact, believing that small, organic interventions have the potential to alleviate big social challenges.

Jose graduated with a Master in Science in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University, New York in 1997 and Bachelors of Architecture from Universidad Cristobal Colon, Veracruz, Mexico in 1993.

Jose is a registered architect in Mexico, California, and Texas and taught at Cal Poly Pomona from 2015 to 2017.

Sarah Lorenzen, AIA – Principal, TOLO Architecture & Professor, CPP ARC

Sarah maintains one foot in practice and one in academia. She is a partner at TOLO Architecture (previously Peter Tolkin Architecture), architecture professor and former chair at Cal Poly Pomona (2013-2017), and resident director of the Neutra VDL Studio and Residences.

Sarah spent her first eighteen years living in Mexico City. At 18 she left Mexico to attend college in the U.S. to pursue a BFA in Drawing at Smith College and at the Atlanta College of Art. After graduating art school, she broadened her interest to architecture, receiving an M.Arch I from Georgia Institute of Technology and later an M.Arch II in Metropolitan, Research & Design from Sci-Arc. During her early career, Sarah worked on the design of research and technology buildings at Lord, Arch and Sargent Architecture in Atlanta and at MBT Architecture (now Perkins + Will Architecture) in San Francisco. Sarah has taught urban design and architecture courses at Cal Poly Pomona (2005-present) and at Georgia Tech (in 2000). In 2011-12 Sarah spent a sabbatical at TU Delft in the Netherlands conducting research on the influences of technology on mapping and urban development. In 2015 Sarah was honored by AIA LA with educator of the year.

Douglas Hanson, AIA, ASID – President, Hanson LA

Douglas Hanson is a Los Angeles based architect who has worked with some of the world’s leading architectural firms designing major cultural, commercial, and residential projects in Asia, Europe, and North America. With over three decades of professional experience, Hanson launched his eponymous firm, HansonLA, in 2010.

Early in his career at Skidmore Owings and Merrill, Hanson collaborated on major European projects from design through construction. In Barcelona, Hanson managed Vila Olimpica, a collaboration between SOM and Frank O. Gehry & Associates. Hanson then joined Frank O. Gehry & Associates in 1992 as a Senior Associate and Project Architect for the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao. He worked closely with the Guggenheim Foundation and the local Basque developer as the project took shape. Hanson then had the opportunity to collaborate with the Renzo Piano Building Workshop on the California Academy of Sciences. In 2004, Hanson became principal at DeStefano & Partners, and led the Los Angeles office in designing and building a number of cultural, commercial, and residential projects. In Hanson’s current role as President of HansonLA, he is the Design Principal on various residential and commercial projects, and the Master Plan Architect for City Market of Los Angeles, a 10 acre, mixed-use development in the Fashion District, and the Mail Order District, located in Boyle Heights.

Hanson’s commitment to the arts is evidenced by HansonLA’s Support DTLA Arts campaign. Proceeds from merchandise sales go to non-profit organizations; Heidi Duckler Dance Theater, City Ballet of Los Angeles, District Gallery, and Arts for LA. Hanson has served as an AIA|LA board member since his nomination in 2015. He was also recently nominated to become a part of the leadership group for AIA’s Knowledge Community—The Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art, and Architecture. Hanson remains an active member of the NDSU alumni with a seat on the Advisory Board for NDSU’s Department of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. Hanson has also spoken on multiple panels.

For more information, please contact:

Will Wright, Hon. AIA|LA
Director, Government & Public Affairs
American Institute of Architects | Los Angeles Chapter
3780 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 701
Los Angeles, CA 90010
(213) 639-0764


December 3, 2020
8:00 am - 5:00 pm PST
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