Published on: April 28, 2017by Kevin Coupe
I am intrigued by a Los Angeles Times story about a garage owner in the Arts District who is doing something that every businessperson needs to do - planning for a potentially radically different future.
Not just talking about it.
The developer is "working on plans for a grand residential complex in downtown Los Angeles that includes what appears to be an ordinary garage. There will be row upon row of lined stalls at street level and two floors underground to store nearly 1,000 cars of tenants and visitors to the trendy Arts District, where parking is relentlessly hard to find."
But ... that garage is being designed with the possibility in mind that even Los Angeles - as car-centric an economy as one can imagine - could become a different place "when ride-sharing services such as Uber and self-driving taxis whittle down car ownership until parking places become expendable."
The garage's design has been developed so it could be "converted into shops, a gym and a theater" with a minimum of fuss.
This strategy, the Times writes, "reflects a consensus among some developers and planners that California’s vaunted car culture is inevitably going to run out of gas — as inconceivable as that might be for many adults who have spent decades controlling their own destiny behind the wheel."
For the purposes of this Eye-Opener, the precise business model is less important than the very important instinct to plan not for tomorrow, but for the inevitable changes that tend to remake businesses. Even in California, where most people probably think that car culture is forever.
That strikes me as very smart ... and worth emulating.
- KC's View: