Eric Richardson at Blog Downtown has noticed the disappearance of construction cranes, where the city center had once teemed with them. The falloff in construction is as clear an economic indicator as the daily Dow Jones figures.

“Today,” Richardson writes, “the construction crane at Concerto is stepping itself down, leaving Downtown with just one remaining crane at L.A. Live's Ritz Carlton tower.”

Which is why the recent news about South Korean-financed skyscrapers going up in the Figueroa Corridor is causing so much chatter in the L.A. Times and on Curbed L.A. Have the Koreans found a way to buck the global recession? (Or are they just out of their minds?)

Curbed L.A. meanwhile, is explaining another mystery — the mass sidewalk-stenciling of ads for LACMA's Pompeii and the Roman Villa

opening. Seems the chalking crew, possibly inspired by Shepard Fairey,

went guerrilla on the streets, starting their cultured tagging before

an accompanying banner campaign had unfurled. Curbed reports that LACMA

has ordered all the stencils to be wiped clean, presto!

LA Weekly