Eyes On The Street: Second Street Tunnel’s Semi-Protected Bikeway

The sorry state of L.A.'s only protected bike lane. Sahra Sulaiman/LA Streetsblog

Down. Missing. Missing. The sorry state of L.A.’s first and only protected bike lane. Sahra Sulaiman/LA Streetsblog

Sahra Sulaiman, SBLA’s Communities Editor for Boyle Heights and South L.A. took this photo last Sunday, showing the flattened and missing pylons in the Second Street Tunnel in Downtown Los Angeles. This is Los Angeles’ first and only protected bikeway.

Just last night, she spotted two cars that had collided parked in the westbound bike lane, with a tow truck parked just ahead of them and a cop car parked behind them. They were able to stay out of car traffic that way, but it made things a little dicey for anyone biking westward. There was a substantial trail of reflector and other debris left in their wake later that night, but, miraculously, the pylons in that vicinity remained upright and in place.

Sahra’s email alerting us can be found after the jump.

Readers: Let us know your ideas! Is there something that the city of Los Angeles can do to keep the Second Street “candlesticks” in place? Video surveillance? Razor wire? Air bags? Concrete barriers? relocate some Metro turnstiles? A traffic study? Relocating the Great Wall of Los Angeles? Emotionally intelligent signage? Maybe just build a protected bikeway elsewhere to take the debilitating pressure off of this brave tunnel?

From Sahra:
I saw a bunch of missing pylons in the 2nd St. tunnel Sunday afternoon. One was bent over (almost like it had been backed over except that there was gravel and signs of a possible crash), and the two in front of it were completely gone (on the westbound side). Their carcasses weren’t even laying around.

Elsewhere in the tunnel, it looks like 3 or 4 are missing, one or two on each side about mid-way through. I find it so odd…It’s a tunnel. Drivers have just one job and one lane that they can only move forward in. That’s it. So, it has to be drunks, distracted drivers, or impatient drivers trying to get/see around those in front of them. Maybe LADOT knows what is behind these crashes? Or has info. about when they will be fixed? The tire from the last collision we wrote about is finally gone…

That said, I see a lot more bike traffic in the tunnel. I have rarely been in there of late that there isn’t someone else either in my lane or headed in the other direction. Sometimes there is more than one, which is a pretty significant uptick.