This morning, Streetsblog enjoyed the ribbon-cutting for the newest stretch of Los Angeles River Bike Path, located in the West San Fernando Valley. In 2011, Streetsblog covered the project’s groundbreaking.
Councilmember Blumenfield hosted this morning’s ribbon-cutting, celebrated by a crowd of about 50, mostly city staff and river and bike advocates. Seleta Reynolds mentioned that this was her first ribbon cutting as Los Angeles Department of Transportation’s new General Manager.
The new bike path goes along the south side of the river from Hartland Street (just west of Mason Avenue) to Winnetka Avenue. It connects to the existing city bike path downstream (east), extending to the Vanalden Avenue footbridge for a total of 2 miles of continuous bike path. The path was part of six interconnected public works projects that included bridge retrofits and extending bike path crossings under refurbished bridges. At the upstream end of the bikeway, west of Hartland Street, is an also newly-opened section of county L.A. River greenway, which is somewhat bikeable but lacks a paved surface and below-grade crossings.
Omar Brownson of the Los Angeles River Revitalization Corporation (LARRC) emphasized that this new path represents one small piece of a larger vision. LARRC is campaigning for Greenway 2020 – the completion of bike and walk paths for the entire 51-mile river by the year 2020.
The new path features off-the-grid solar-powered lighting, native landscaping, decorative gates, benches, and undercrossings below bridges.