The development of the city block now known as Plaza Escuela began with a discussion of how this key piece of real estate could integrate with the pedestrian-friendly zones to the North and the East. With the extension of an existing city street through the center of the project, and the creation of pedestrian retail storefronts along the perimeter of the site, the block became a new ‘magnet’ for pedestrian activity. Central to this magnetism was the design of a new urban crossroads at the intersection of Locust Street (the street which was extended to create the ‘Main Street’ pedestrian character of Plaza Escuela) and Olympic Blvd (which ties directly into Broadway Plaza, a large development). This intersection, anchored by a large high-end grocery store, serves as a new urban plaza for this growing portion of the downtown, incorporating amenities such as a large fountain, and plenty of outdoor seating.
The development is additionally served by two multi-level parking structures, both integrated seamlessly into the urban fabric of the block. These garage structures incorporate ground level retail, and allow for a through-flow of vehicular traffic. As part of the downtown retail overlay district, these garages add to the overall available reciprocal parking for the pedestrian environment, as provided for in the zoning guidelines of the city.