Sharrows Dissapear from Westholme Boulevard (Updated, 2:54)

Screen_shot_2010_08_31_at_12.21.52_PM.pngWestholme and Le Conte, a formerly Sharrowed intersection.

Last night, UCLA Planner Madeline Brozen tweeted that the Westholme Sharrows, which have been on the street for nearly five weeks, have been partially removed after Westholme Avenue had been repaved.  The Sharrows used to stretch from the corner of Westholme and Wilshire Boulevard all the way to the UCLA Campus area, but after a repaving project north of Santa Monica Boulevard, the Sharrows have been covered by a layer of asphalt.

Angered reaction is already coming from the twitterverse and other advocacy groups.  While I was out photographing the street, The Transit Coalition wrote about the removal in their newsletter and wondered whether departments talk to each other.

Screen_shot_2010_08_31_at_12.21.39_PM.pngCan you see the Sharrow? My camera’s autofocus couldn’t.

…but no criticism stung as much as that from the
City Bureau of Street Services
. Without even a whimper, the brand new
Sharrows on Westholme Ave.
were covered up when the street was
resurfaced. Do these City Departments not talk to each other? (Silos are
very popular at the City!)

Ironically, LADOTS Senior Bike Coordinator Michelle Mowery was unable to answer my query’s about the Sharrow removal as she is currently in the field monitoring drivers and cyclists reaction to the Sharrows pilot program with a group of LACBC volunteers.  Naturally, that group of volunteers happens to include Brozen who surely has some questions for the Bike Coordinator. 

When we hear back from LADOT on a timeline to put the Sharrows back, well let you know.

Update: Michelle Mowery, the LADOT Senior Bikeway Coordinator responds: "We have confirmed that a section of the Shared Lane Marking (Sharrow) on
Westholme north of Wilshire have been deleted with some sort of
resurfacing project.  Westholme does not appear on any of the current
resurfacing lists provided to LADOT from Public Works.  Rest assured the
pilot project is continuing; today we are in the field doing the After
test of the sharrow location on Westholme where the markings remain."

  • stats dude

    It looks like the stripes are missing as well. Allow me to hope that when the street gets striped, the sharrows will return.

  • “Where the sharrows remain”… last time I rode Westholme (last night, about 20 hours ago) the sharrows were still in existence only at the very beginning next to Hilgard and then on a short stretch towards Santa Monica. On the plus side, it shouldn’t take LADOT and LACBC long to do their field test.

  • Madeline Brozen

    Yes – I was out test riding with the LADOT crew this morning. LADOT seemed to be unaware that the street had been resurfaced, and thus the missing sharrows. Since this was a rush to get out, no cross-sectional street plans were created. It sounded as though this would be a semi-lengthly process, starting these plans “from scratch.” What was unfortunate is that it’s fairly clear that Dept of Transportation (DOT) and Department of Street Services (DSS) do not talk to each other. It is technically DSS responsibility to re-install the sharrows, but without a street plan, I do not know if that will be done. Even Mowery commented their absence happened “just in time for school.”

  • I noticed the incredible disappearing sharrows when I rode Westholme around noon today. You’d think that our new bike friendly mayor might insist that DSS check with LADOT before they cover up bike infrastructure. Or maybe like most Angelenos, they had no idea what those markings on the were — note the past tense.

    What we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.

  • Chris L

    While we struggle to keep a couple of sharrows, DC began implementing a 1,100-bike sharing system today. If the federal grant they applied for comes through, it will be tripling in size in short order.

    http://readysetdc.com/2010/08/capital-bikeshare-is-on-the-way/

    I don’t want to be jealous of other cities, but LADOT gives me no choice.

  • We just wanted to let you guys know that getting Sharrows back on Westholme are a top priority.

  • Hmmmmmm… perhaps we can get the city’s Bureau of Street Services to share their upcoming resurfacing schedule with the public… then we can alert the LADOT to things like this!

  • Erik G.

    Ever notice that when these streets are freshly repaved, especially if the parallel/concurrent parking restrictions are in place, the road becomes a speedway?

  • Erik, freshly repaved streets often result in speed increases. The roads are quieter, less bumpy (and now appear wider) and instill more confidence in drivers. I’m not advocating for potholes as a traffic calming measure, but they do slow cars down.

    The proper lane stripes, sharrow symbols and on street parking all make the street appear more narrow, giving drivers less confidence in their ability to safely drive fast.

  • Joe, the idea about the resurfacing schedule is great. My understanding is that there is a general maintenance pot they apply for every year. For more significant work, such as street widening or repaving (vs just new asphalt) it would be a distinct project with a project number and be identified in SCAG’s FTIP.