Quick Hit: How Bad Is the City’s Pothole Problem?


Last December, I was taking my Flying Pigeon bucket bike back to its nest for some baby-preparedness upgrades by taking it down Beverly Boulevard on its way to the Downtown. I’d probably ridden on Beverly going east once or twice, preferring the "4th Street Bike Boulevard" so I wasn’t expecting the poor state of the road to literally cause a bungee chord on the bike to snap and end up getting wrapped in my bike chain. The wounded pigeon ended up returning to my house for repairs before we could get it fixed.

I vowed to do a piece on the city’s pothole efforts. I haven’t gotten it done yet. However, here’s a quick hit from a CALPIRG press release on the state of California’s roads:

The region’s repair backlog is so extreme that in 2008, Los Angeles filled 800,000 potholes in 2008, yet still has the "bumpiest roads in California."

I’m not certain I could make a better case that our region’s transportation priorities are messed up if I tried.

  • I don’t know if you’ve started to ride buses much, but this is one of my biggest gripes. Of all the changes you could make, for example on Wilshire, to the bus system (including bus only lanes or better TAP cards), I would choose fixing the potholes first. I really think it detracts from the riding experience that much.

    And of course, it’s not just Wilshire.

  • A British cyclist was killed last month when he swerved to avoid a big pothole; it’s only a matter of time before that happens here: http://road.cc/content/news/15998-army-officer-killed-bike-he-swerved-avoid-pothole