Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Contested urban space: Competing discourses of urban development and environmental conservation in Playa Vista, California
by Page, Jason A., M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2009, 133; 1481757
Abstract (Summary)

The Playa Vista land use story serves as a portal into the internal dynamics of how strategically constructed discourses help shape the events and outcomes of highly contested urban spaces. Originally proposed in the 1970s, Playa Vista is a massive mixed-use residential and commercial development built on coastal wetlands west of Los Angeles. Employing critical discourse analysis in a case study of the Los Angeles Times coverage of the Playa Vista land-use conflict, this study examines pro-development discourses employed to justify, normalize, facilitate, and legitimize efforts to build the project, as well as alternative, anti-development discourses reflecting concerns of local residents and opposition groups. Findings reveal that developers utilized a wide variety of tactics to win approval for their project, and that anti-development groups successfully navigated through pro-development rhetoric and won considerable concessions in their favor. An analysis of dominant discourses during 1987-2007 reveals that powerful anti-development interests can significantly affect the quality and outcome of development; a local development coalition comprised of developers and government officials materializes only when the potential for luring capital investment becomes great; and despite successful efforts of anti-development interest groups to stall the project, development gets built in the end.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Jocoy, Christine L.
Commitee:
School: California State University, Long Beach
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 48/04M, Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Geography, Environmental management, Land Use Planning, Urban planning
Keywords:
Publication Number: 1481757
ISBN: 9781109669947