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Mall With Latino Theme Could Lure Tourists

March 08, 1992

I agree with Christopher Leinberger ("Tourism Might Be the Key to Reviving Downtown L.A.," Feb. 2) that the key to "revive" downtown would be to start with tourism. Too many local people seem to be "proud" of the fact that they rarely go to downtown.

Our downtown is the heart of our city, our city is the heart of our county and the county is the heart of our state. Anybody who feels proud of not visiting downtown should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.

However tourists do not have the anti-downtown biases or prejudices that locals have. I agree with Leinberger that we can "build" from the attractions that are already there.

I may be dense but I think some builder is missing the boat when he doesn't build a $100-million shopping mall on Broadway, perhaps on 2nd Street or near Olympic Boulevard. Have it built with a Latino theme like those ultramodern emporiums in Mexico City and Caracas, Venezuela.

Yes, I know there are a lot of poor people on Broadway but a mall of this magnitude and significance would certainly bring many tourists (who usually go to Olvera Street) and also many thousands of middle- and upper-class Latinos from as far away as Mexico City.

How about it, city fathers?

JOHN F. MENDEZ

Los Angeles

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