Rosendahl Streetscast Part II: Goals for the Council Transportation Committee

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Yesterday we introduced the first in our three-part interview with Los Angeles City Council Transportation Committee Chair Bill Rosendahl.  Today, Rosendahl discusses his goals and agenda for the committee he now chairs from buses, to bikes to taxi drivers.

In the first segment, Rosendahl  discuses what needs to be done to empower and protect four transportation groups that are often ignored: cyclists, pedestrians, bus riders and taxi drivers. 

[audio:http://la.streetsblog.org/wp-content/pdf/Rosendahl4priorities.mp3]

While he hasn’t ridden a bicycle in years, Rosendahl has become a go-to Council Member for cyclist issues, even more so than avid cyclists such as Tom LaBonge and Ed Reyes.  In this segment, Rosendahl discusses his goal of having what he terms "safe paths" that would connect all parts of the city with safe bike routes, trails and lanes. 

He also reveals how some high-profile bicycle crashes, such as the Mandeville Canyon incident in July of 2008 and the Downtown "Bicycle v Hummer" crash last April should open everyone’s eyes to what’s happening on the road.

[audio:http://la.streetsblog.org/wp-content/pdf/Rosendahlbikes.mp3]

As for buses, Rosendahl acknowledges both the importance of the Wilshire Bus-Only Lanes and improving bus service in general.  In this segment Rosendahl seems very concerned with the state of the bus system and outlines some ideas on how to improve on-time bus service and crowded conditions.  Of particular interest, Rosendahl discusses the politics of the bus-only lanes and how he hopes to eventually earn the above-board support of Fifth District Councilman, and Transportation Committee Chair, Paul Koretz for the project.

[audio:http://la.streetsblog.org/wp-content/pdf/Rosendahlbusesrapidandotherwise.mp3 ]

He also has a few words for pedestrian safety and the rights of cab drivers.  There’s nothing too specific here, but a concern for the safety of those who walk is expressed.

[audio:http://la.streetsblog.org/wp-content/pdf/Rosendahlpedtaxismisc.mp3]

Last, Rosendahl gives a brief, positive, description of his "team" on the committee and discuses the relationship they all need to have with the Metro Board and our federal delegation.

[audio:http://la.streetsblog.org/wp-content/pdf/rosendahltmetroboardandfed.mp3 ]

Tomorrow we’ll be back with the third, and last, part of the series, a discussion of local issues in the Eleventh Councilmanic District.

  • It would be nice to have Rosendahl draft a motion moving the Bicycle Coordinator out of the LADOT and into the Mayor’s office or the Planning Department. LA has a lot of “bicycle” employees paid through State and County grants and funding sources – but very, very, little to show for it.

  • Very few paid for by County grants, actually. And I’m not sure I would retain Michelle Mowery as the Bicycle Coordinator, either, especially considering the amount of staff she has.

  • Thanks calwatch, you’re right about the County not giving much money to the city. I should have said “MTA” – which does fund a good chunk of bikeways stuff in LA.

    The City gets a total of $7 million annually that goes towards cycling (which could be more if we cut out the Environmental Affairs Dept and used the AQMD money they get to build bike facilities). Most of that pays for staffing, with a solid chunk getting spread around in different city projects as part of the City’s “Capital Improvement Expenditure Plan” (or something like that).

    Whether Mowery stays or goes, the Bicycle Coordinator for the city needs to be in a de jure position of power – that’s why I suggest the a deputy to the mayor or a more-than-a-staffer position at the Planning Dept. LADOT is designed to ignore the interests of non-motorized user groups (a few enlightened staffers aside). They need to be consulted on bike facilities, but not be tasked with grant applications, design, construction, political will, community outreach, etc. as they obviously can’t do the job even with a couple of million heading their way each year for bikes.

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