By Caroline Park, 15, South Pasadena HS
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Purple couches, pink tables, cool music, tons of high-tech computers and laughing teens. Where can this be? It’s Teen ‘Scape, the newly renovated teen area at the Downtown Central Library. This great place is the spot to study, do homework, surf the Web, or just lay back and read with friends.

When I arrived, I was amazed at how much cooler it looked than the last dull Teen ‘Scape. The surroundings are hip as a teen would want it, with sky-blue and purple walls. The space is a lot bigger and teens there are happy. School pictures from Roosevelt High and other schools hang on the walls with banners and T-shirts. There are also mini-conference rooms at the back where friends lazily sit talking to one another. A huge wide-screen TV dominates the lounge, for movies and other viewing programs.

The computers, with state-of-the-art flat-screen monitors, are marveled at by the teens that come in. When I went, you didn’t have to sign up to use the Internet. You just found an empty spot and used it. (I didn’t like that method as much. I prefer signing up because then everyone gets a turn and it’s more orderly.)

There are also CD players on the side wall. At the front entrance, word processors wait to be used. You have to sign up for these.

There are plenty of books to choose from. Books for the SAT, PSAT, ACT and other helpful resources are there while on the other side, comics and fiction books cover the wall, Spiderman hangs from the ceiling as Sarah Michelle Gellar poses at the corner. Yoda wisely sits on top of the comics section, staring at the teens who pass by. I asked some teens what they thought about the new Teen ‘Scape:

"Why are there adults in here?"
—Richard, Culver City HS

"It’s cool!"
Mary, Bravo HS

"The computers are way better than the slow ones at the other teen area."
—Margaret, LACES

"I don’t know. It’s the same,"
—Drew, Los Angeles HS

"I guess it’s OK. I never really thought of it. I just come here because I want to get out of the house."
—Brian, LACES

The Downtown Central Library is located at 630 W. Fifth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071.

Teen ‘Scape is on the second floor. For directions, hours, or more information, call (213) 228-7529 or visit the Web site at