2.6 out of 10

Wholesale District / Skid Row

Ranked 59th best neighborhood in Los Angeles
34.0408066924956 -118.238033452691
Great for
  • Internet Access
  • Public Transport
  • Cost of Living
  • Medical Facilities
  • Lack of Traffic
Not great for
  • Childcare
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Schools
  • Clean & Green
  • Parking
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Professionals
  • Hipsters


4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 1/5
  • Childcare 1/5

"Rattlesnake, Villains, Gun Play and Prison Girls"

Sometimes a place has a name that no longer represents its true self. That is the reason why lots of places try to start anew by coming up with a new name for their areas that no longer carry the old connotations. That is why many people have come to call this area (or part of it—it’s a bit vague) the “Loft District.” Now, this definitely looks like Skid Row—it is filled with the industrial detritus of LA which seems to have accumulated here in these worn down warehouses and factories.

And yes, there are definitely a ton of homeless people and shady looking types here.

However, there are also a number of really cool nightspots in this area that capitalize on both the low rents of this down-and-out section of town and on the cache of being in possibly the seediest part of town. Among the places worthy of mention in this regard are Wurstkuche a sausage dog place with German craft beers. Definitely the place to be for Oktoberfest, Oktoberfest has the kind of unusual menu that appeals to hop head and sausage lovers. My suggestions in terms of food choices—the Classic Bratwurst and Kielbasa, unless you are in an adventurous mood, in which case, go for either the Rattlesnake and Rabbit with Jalapenos, or the Alligator and Pork. (To answer your question, the first tastes like chicken and I haven’t tried the second.) As to what to wash that rattler down with? Try the Aventius if you want a full pallet taste. And if you want something more straight forward go for La Chouffe—or any of the Belgian craft beers. (They also have wine and vegetarian dishes, but going for either one of those is a little like going to Idaho and not having the potatoes or going to Paris and eating at McDonalds every day.)

One of the places that plays off the reputation of the area is Villains Lounge at the far eastern end of the neighborhood. It pretends to be a sort of down-and-dirty biker lounge, though the crowd is more in it for laughs (mostly young college kids in sneakers) than you might expect at a real dive bar.

It’s not all about eating and drinking though if you want to channel your inner Dirty Harry while you are among the “scum” (I am quoting Harry, I obviously don’t think the down-and-out of LA are “scum”), then you might try the LA Gun Club on 6th. Being more of a First Amendment than a Second Amendment kind of girl, I haven’t ever been, but my NRA friend who thinks Sarah Palin is “the Bomb,” really likes this place and goes there to keep up her gun skills--just in case society ever falls apart and she has to shoot squirrels from helicopters or something along those lines.

Just to make sure you know where my politics are, you should know that this is also the neighborhood that is home to WriteGirl, an organization that pairs teen girls in prison with women writers, in an attempt to not only improve the girls’ writing skills but also to give them positive female role models that help them open up their vistas to what the world can offer. Definitely worth checking out if you are a local female author looking to make a difference.

You shouldn’t get the wrong idea about this place, however. It is still a functional industrial area with restaurant supply areas and trucking companies and the whole deal. Even though many of the newer establishments have started to cater to the local gentrified areas, having places like a Loft Supply store where you can get all the cool sorts of things you might want for you loft, to make it look rugged and lived in—or establishments like the Cirrus Gallery, hidden away behind a fence topped by barbwire fencing in a building that looks more like a factory than a gallery, the neighborhood is still actually an industrial area.
  • Cool Restuarants and Nightspots
  • Good Shopping
  • WriteGirl
  • Not for the Meek
  • Crime
  • Dirty
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Hipsters
1/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 1/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 1/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Lack of Traffic 1/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5

"Do not go here unless you want to have nightmares"

Skid row is a part of downtown and it has one of the highest homeless populations in the country. There are, literally, thousands of homeless people in this little area. They are camped out, mostly, in cardboard boxes and tents. The area perpetually smells like urine and it is disgusting. Needless to say, there's a lot of drugs and violence in skid row. There was a big problem a few years ago where hospitals got busted for dumping people in this area -- adding to what was already a huge problem. This is one of the most dangerous parts of Los Angeles. Let's face it, these people have nothing to lose. And, drug addicts aren't the most sound of mind people.
People keep trying to say that because of gentrification downtown, that this area has cleaned up a bit. But, seriously, it's still awful. A number of my friends have gotten into some scary altercations with the homeless whilst passing through this area. One of them grabbed my friend by the hair and threatened to rip it out for not sparing any change. And, another actually had to punch a crack addict to get her off of him. These incidents both happened in the middle of the day.
There are rats everywhere and feces . . .it's just gross. If you can, at all, avoid this area, you should at all costs. Circus freakshows after dark are less scary than this place.
  • Crime
  • Dirty
  • Dangerous

"Not a place to visit, unless you want to help"

The official boundaries of Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles are Third Street on the north, Seventh Street on the south, Alameda Street on the east and Main Street on the West. That represents about half of this neighborhood, the rest, on the east, being the Wholesale District.

Some 7,000 to 8,000 people homeless people live on Skid Row. They are legally allowed to sleep on the sidewalks between 9PM and 6AM, at least until 1,250 units are built to house these homeless people. This was an agreement settled between the City of Los Angeles and the ACLU.

Since 2006, conditions on Skid Row have improved. The missions, the LAPD, the Mayor of Los Angeles and the ACLU have all worked to better the situation in the area. The Safer City Initiative aims to clean up Skid Row.

Hospitals have been prevented from “dumping” their homeless patients in the area. Nearby parts of downtown Los Angeles have been renovated, improved, and “gentrified,” all of which helps to clean up Skid Row.

As of 2000, there were some 17,000 people living in the neighborhood, representing approximately 2,400 households. Around 50% of the residents were Hispanic or Latino. 25% of the neighborhood was White, 17% African-American, and 6 % Asian. Over 40% of the residents had incomes below the poverty line. Although some 10% of the population is under 18, there are no schools inside of Skid Row.

The fire trucks and ambulances that are assigned to Skid Row have the name on their sides. They do not want to remove it.

The Wholesale District is to the east of Skid Row. It used to be called the Warehouse District because it is home to a group of industrial warehouses near area rail lines. Very few people live in the Warehouse District. There are people who work in the area.

The main reason to visit Skid Row is if you volunteer for one of the groups helping the impoverished people there. These include, among others the Union Rescue Mission, L.A. Mission Community Clinic, Volunteers of America, and the Downtown Women’s Center.
1/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 1/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Schools 1/5

"One of the Most Dangerous Areas in LA"

It's name speaks for itself. Skid Row is actually defined as " a run-down or dilapidated urban area with a large, impoverished population." Most presumably how this area got it's name. Skid Row is located near 3rd to 7th Streets and Alameda to Main Street in LA. The area around it has beautiful architecture and some great restaurants with city locals making their establishment serve quality, affordable food. The work ethic is great around that area at all the establishments but it is just not safe. it's a shame, as there are some great hotels in the area and some beautiful buildings that are fun to visit but it's just not safe. You have the convenience of the subway nearby which cuts down on travel times due to high traffic but with an unsafe neighborhood, is it worth it? Especially avoid at night.It is home to some of the most dangerous gangs, and highest crimes in the Los Angeles area.

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Best Streets in Wholesale District / Skid Row

"Great street in the Little Tokyo Area, but scary near 6th St."
34.0450989340273 -118.243372686295

Unranked Streets in Wholesale District / Skid Row

East 3rd St

"Quiet artist colony street."
34.0464262331354 -118.240388033716
"This street is lined with homeless people and drug addicts."
34.0427479625629 -118.241527028338

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