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Old 12-23-2011, 10:51 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,655
Walking around near LAX - how safe is the area?

I'm planning to attend Gallifrey 23, the big Doctor Who convention in Los Angeles by myself next year, and I wont have my car with me. I'll be staying at a hotel about a five minute walk from the convention hotel and since a) I've never been to a con and b) I've haven't spent much time at all in LA, I'm not 100% sure how these thing work. The con will be letting out after dark, and I want to know if it's safe for me to walk back to my hotel. The area is about a block or two east of LAX. I assume other people will be leaving the con at the end, and at least a few are bound to be in my hotel, so I could walk with them, but I hate to base my safety on assumptions. Any advice?

Last edited by Small Hen; 12-23-2011 at 10:52 PM.
Old 12-23-2011, 10:59 PM
Corellian Nerfherder
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Brookfield, IL
Posts: 11,431
I've been in that neighborhood a few times (having stayed at LAX hotels). ISTR that it can get a bit sketchy once you get a few more blocks east of LAX.
Old 12-23-2011, 10:59 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: NoWA
Posts: 58,751
I used to work in the building just east of the Raddison on Century and Sepulveda. Due to the nature of the program I was working on, I was on the mid-watch for a while. For 'lunch' I'd walk the circuit of the airport. Never had any worries. (This was in the early-'90s.)
Old 12-24-2011, 01:28 AM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: 7th Level of Hell, Ca
Posts: 16,630
I used to work a block away. The area directly surrounding the airport is fine. If you head east, past the 405 freeway, you will hit Inglewood, or south past the 105, you will hit Hawthorne. Then all bets are off.

Last edited by Typo Negative; 12-24-2011 at 01:29 AM.
Old 12-24-2011, 09:14 AM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,655
So one block east of me and one block south of me = scary gang death. Good to know.
Old 12-24-2011, 10:19 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: An East Hollywood dingbat
Posts: 7,845
Originally Posted by Small Hen View Post
So one block east of me and one block south of me = scary gang death. Good to know.
Well, more than one block. East of the 405, in addition to Inglewood, is the unincorporated area called Lennox, and south of LAX is the city of El Segundo. You won't be anywhere near those places, nor will you have any reason to be (unless you visit the giant donut, by the freeway). If you're really concerned about street crime, go to the Los Angeles Times neighborhood crime mapper. Enter the neighborhood around the airport (it's called "Westchester"), and you'll see that in terms of street crimes it's a pretty quiet place--probably mostly home burglaries in the surburan houses just north of the airport.

The real issue is that the area around LAX is extremely unpedestrian-freindly, and actually just really boring. The only reason why most businesses (including hotels) are in that neighborhood in the first place is because of the airport. (Businesses that ship a lot, etc.--and strip clubs.)

In my opinion, having a convention at a hotel near LAX is totally pointless--stupid, in fact. There's nothing organically interesting about that area. You might as well have the convention at a business park in some God-forsaken suburb of Orange County.

If you have any free time, get a transit day pass and take the Metro downtown and to Hollywood, so you can actually see some of the real city.
Old 12-24-2011, 11:21 AM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 14,000
Inglewood's always up to no good
Old 12-24-2011, 11:30 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Southeast Florida USA
Posts: 21,035
This would have been a bit easier if you'd told us which hotel you're staying at.

Google sez the convention is at the Airport Marriott, 5855 West Century Boulevard. I've stayed at that hotel many times and explored the area extensively on foot.

Walking North on Airport Boulevard (just West of the Marriott) is fine for farther than you're likely to walk. There's some interesting mid 50s LA commerical Main street architecture from 1/4 mile north to about 1-1/2 miles north. Along that strip is a decent variety of shops & eateries. Upper working class, but safe. Conversely, Aviation Boulevard (just east of the Marriott) is all industrial fading to residential. Nothing there to see.

I would not walk East much past the 405 freeway. There is a great Mexican restaurant a block or so past the 405 on the South side of Century. Other than that, it gets scruffy quickly.

There is nothing South of Century Boulevard you need to see. Pure industrial area & any pedestrians are likely to be folks you'd rather not talk to. Or are tired workers waiting for a bus.

And West of the Marriott is just the airport terminal and roadways.

Greater Los Angeles is a city of micro neighborhoods. Wealth & poverty, scruffy & nice, safe and dangerous abut each other closely in a crazy patchwork. Some named suburbs are homogenously good or bad. But many are not. Statements like "El Segundo is safe" (or is unsafe) are not real meaningful when you're on foot and want to know about a 1/2 mile radius of a particular place.

Overall I'll second guizot's point that the Airport Marriott area is not ideal tourist territory. If you have a chance to check out some other parts of LA you'll be well rewarded.

Last edited by LSLGuy; 12-24-2011 at 11:34 AM. Reason: Out! Out Foul typos!
Old 12-24-2011, 12:07 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Van Nuys, CA
Posts: 11,663
Last time I was out walking in that area was to meet my Aunt who was staying at an LAX hotel for a training seminar. We walked around several blocks to go to lunch and chat. I didn't feel unsafe in the slightest.
Old 12-24-2011, 01:27 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,655
LSLguy, I'm staying at the Travelodge, one block east of the Marriott.

Thanks for the info, everyone. Guizot, my younger sister lives in Hollywood, so Friday and Saturday will be reserved for general Doctor Who geekery, with Sunday and Monday free for the city sites. And, if you're wondering, the reason I didn't ask her about this is because she tends to be somewhat overly paranoid and cautious - she probably wouldn't feel safe walking our downtown riverwalk alone.
Old 12-24-2011, 02:10 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: SoCal
Posts: 1,878
I go to Anime Los Angeles in one of the nearby hotels every year. Since I have no car, I usually take the Green Line and then a connecting bus to the street where the hotels are. I concur that the area is rather pedestrian-unfriendly. I also recommend not wandering south of the 105 freeway if you can help it. Directly south of the Green Line station is a strip club, where they wouldn't let me use the bathroom unless I paid the cover charge, so I waited till I got home.

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