DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES - A large, golden container at Grand Park in downtown Los Angeles may look simple on the outside, but inside the structure is a free link to people across the globe.
The container is called a portal and it's a public art project. It uses immersive audiovisual equipment to connect people from all around the world. The one in downtown was linked live about 2,000 miles east of Southern California.
Mexico City portal director Tomas Ramirez said more than 20 cities across the world have their own golden portal. Some of those cities are in countries such as Germany, Iraq, South Korea and the United Kingdom.
"It's social intentions to connect strangers in a time where I think we all need to basically hear what everybody else in the world has to say," Ramirez said.
The portals are set up to be the same in every city so that it feels like callers are in the same exact place. People are using the portals to share everything from unique cultural traditions to common pastimes and even different takes on the Oreo cookie.
Reservations to connect across the planet are first come, first served.