Skip to content

Posts from the LADOT Category

1 Comment

Pacoima’s Van Nuys Blvd To Receive Upgrade, Protected Bike Lane This Summer

xxx

Before and after cross-sections for Van Nuys Boulevard. Source: Great Streets concept proposal [PDF]

A stretch of Van Nuys Boulevard in Pacoima will receive an extensive safety upgrade this summer. Under the leadership of Los Angeles City Councilmember Felipe Fuentes, Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Great Streets Initiative, and the L.A. Department of Transportation (LADOT), the 0.8-miles of Van Nuys Blvd. between Laurel Canyon Boulevard and San Fernando Road will receive a road diet. Traffic will be reduced by one lane; bike lanes will be added, including a southbound parking-protected bike lane.

Councilmember Fuentes expects that the project “not only help address safety concerns for all users of the corridor but will hopefully bring new energy to the boulevard where people can come together to enjoy the food, art and culture that Van Nuys Blvd has to offer.”

The Van Nuys Blvd Safety Improvement Project concept proposal [PDF] was presented at a mid-April community forum. The proposal makes the case for safety improvements on Van Nuys Blvd, which is on the city’s Vision Zero High Injury Network: 6 percent of L.A. streets where 65 percent of all deaths and severe injuries take place.

According to statistics cited in the proposal, a city speed survey found 19 percent of drivers speeding. This contributes to higher rates of vehicle crashes resulting in death and severe injury to drivers and others. Since 2011, this stretch of Van Nuys Blvd. has experienced 57 crashes that injured pedestrians and/or cyclists, which is four times the citywide average.

xxx

Van Nuys Boulevard experiences unsafe levels of car collisions leading to deaths and injuries to drivers. Source: Great Streets concept proposal [PDF]

Max Podemski, Planning Director for Pacoima Beautiful, expects that the project “will go a long way in humanizing Van Nuys Boulevard.” Podemski echoes the safety issues highlighted by the city, stating “Many residents have been hit by cars trying to cross the street or know people who have. Most residents walk and wait for the bus along it. The changes proposed by the city will make the street more responsive to the ways people are currently using it.”
Read more…

11 Comments

Construction Getting Underway For Los Angeles Street Protected Bike Lanes

In about a month, Los Angeles Street will be a full-featured protected bike lane. Image via LADOT

Next month, Los Angeles Street will have full-featured protected bike lanes. Image via LADOT

Yesterday, a construction notice appeared on the official L.A. City Transportation Department (LADOT) Twitter account. It announced a “resurfacing and bike lane enhancement project” to include “protected bike lanes” on downtown L.A.’s Los Angeles Street, extending from First Street to Alameda Street. Construction is set to begin this weekend, and conclude by May 15. During the month-long construction, cyclists and drivers will share a single lane.

Los Angeles Street protected bike lanes will extend from Union Station to First Street. Map via LADOT

Los Angeles Street protected bike lanes will extend from Union Station to First Street. Map via LADOT

This 0.5-mile stretch of Los Angeles Street has existing buffered bike lanes that were striped in 2012.

A protected bike lane on Los Angeles Street was mentioned by LADOT bicycle coordinator Michelle Mowery in 2014. The project was planned to coincide with city Bureau of Street Services resurfacing of the street, which was delayed.

LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds describes the Los Angeles Street facility as a “laboratory” for testing out protected bike lane features. Though LADOT has implemented protected lanes in the Second Street tunnel and on Reseda Boulevard, Los Angeles Street will be the first L.A. protected bikeway facility to feature bike signals, and integrated transit stop islands.

Reynolds mentioned that Los Angeles Street is an easy site for trying out new features because it is surrounded entirely by governmental uses. The protected bike lane will run adjacent to Union Station, El Pueblo, the Edward Roybal Federal Building, City Hall East, City Hall South, LAPD, as well as crossing over the 101 Freeway. The high-visibility central downtown location puts the state of the art protected facility right under the eyes of city, county, state, and federal governmental staff and electeds. This should help familiarize governmental insiders with how protected bike lanes function.

Reynolds added that the new protected lanes will be completed in time to dovetail with implementation of Metro bike-share program coming to downtown L.A. this summer.

The existing Los Angeles Street bike lanes experience a significant amount of bike-car conflict, with right-turning drivers and parked law enforcement vehicles often occupying the bike lane. The new protected facility should minimize these conflicts. Delineator bollards will keep cars from parking or driving in the lane. New signals will give cyclists and right-turning drivers separate signal phases.

Rush hour drivers

Rush hour drivers crowd the existing Los Angeles Street bike lane, queuing to turn right onto the 101 Freeway. Photo: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

Cyclists can ride in the new lanes in just one short month; look for a grand opening in mid-May.

11 Comments

L.A. Moves Toward Returning Parking Meter Revenue To Neighborhoods

Pasadena parking meter revenue returns to neighborhoods where it is collected. Soon L.A. may implement a similar program.

Pasadena parking meter revenue returns to neighborhoods where it is collected. L.A. plans to implement a similar program soon.

Parking expert Donald Shoup has long asserted that one cornerstone of smart parking policy is to return parking meter revenue to the neighborhoods where the revenue is generated. When parking meters feed an anonymous city general fund, as much of the city of L.A.’s meter revenue does, then parking meters are perceived as burden to communities. When local meter revenue goes to fund local improvements, then neighborhoods tend to welcome the meters.

There is a much-repeated Pasadena anecdote showing the power of revenue return. When the city of Pasadena wanted to install parking meters in its Old Pasadena neighborhood, there was resistance from local merchants. When Pasadena proposed using the meter revenue just to improve Old Pasadena, merchants responded: can we run the meters at night and on weekends!?

Revenue return is key to generating the political will to implementing meters and charging appropriate rates for parking.

Under a suite of parking reform motions by L.A. City Councilmember Bonin, the city and its Department of Transportation (LADOT) are moving toward a pilot program where a portion of parking meter revenue will be returned to neighborhoods. Bonin’s very Shoupista motion 15-1450-S4 calls on LADOT to begin a “pilot program that would return a portion of local meter revenue to the locations where it was generated” and for that funding to go to “transportation improvements.” LADOT is interpreting “transportation improvements” very broadly to include sidewalk repair, bike corrals, beautification, parking, etc.

At today’s Transportation Committee meeting, LADOT appeared poised to begin the program in FY2016-17 in three pilot areas, with probable expansion citywide in FY2107-18.  Read more…

No Comments

LADOT People St Program Wins National Planning Award

Folklorico dancers at the openign of People St's Bradley Plaza. Photo by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

Folklorico dancers at the 2015 opening of People St’s Bradley Plaza. Photo by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

This week, the national American Planning Association (APA) awarded its National Planning Achievement Award for a Best Practice to the city of Los Angeles’ Transportation Department (LADOT) People St program. SBLA readers are likely familiar with People St, which is responsible for over a dozen new community friendly spaces—including plazas, parklets, and bike corrals—on the streets of Los Angeles. People St is an ongoing program wherein LADOT partners with local stakeholders—businesses, nonprofits, others—who request these facilities.

In a press statement, LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds wrote:

We are so proud to have won this prestigious award from APA. People St represents a collective and collaborative lift from the City staff and consultants who worked tirelessly to create this innovative program, to our community partners who rally their expertise and resources to partner with the City to bring the projects to life. This recognition is a testament to the power of working hand-in-hand with communities to unlock the potential of their streets.

More details on the best practice award is available at People St and APA websites. Kudos to everyone involved in making these People St projects such great successes. More please!

41 Comments

Eyes on the Street: New Green Bike Lane Merge Zones on Vineland Avenue

New green bike lane merge zones on Vineland Avenue just south of the 134 Freeway. All photos: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

New green merge zones on Vineland Avenue at the 134/170 Freeways. All photos: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

The Vineland Avenue bike lanes got a little greener this week. The L.A. Department of Transportation (LADOT) gave several merge zones a coat of “fresh Kermit.”

The Vineland Avenue bike lanes run from Ventura Boulevard to Burbank Boulevard in the southeast San Fernando Valley neighborhoods of Studio City, North Hollywood, and Toluca Lake – just east of the North Hollywood Red Line Station. There have been some issues with these lanes in the past, especially in the freeway-infested area where the 101, 134, and 170 Freeways intersect. In a 6-block stretch, between Aqua Vista Street and Hortense Street, the Vineland lanes cross two freeway on-ramps and two freeway off-ramps, with three additional freeway ramps just a block or two away on Moorpark Street and Riverside Drive. Drivers merge into the bike lane and drive in it for blocks before turning; this results in clogging the bike lane, generally at commute hours.

According to Streetsblog reader Melissa Federowicz, LADOT had recently experimented, apparently unsuccessfully, with installing plastic bollards. This week the bollards came out and green paint went in.  Read more…

6 Comments

DTLA Pedestrians Get Expanded Head Start Signals

Red light plus walk signal means a leading pedestrian interval. Photos by Joe LInton/Streetsblog L.A.

Red light plus walk signal means a Leading Pedestrian Interval. Photos by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

Downtown L.A. is getting a little safer for walking with some new traffic signals that give pedestrians a head start. Officially, these are called “Leading Pedestrian Intervals.” The concept is that when pedestrians get the walk signal a few seconds before drivers get a green light, they can walk into the intersection and be more visible, and therefore safer.

The new signals are part of an initiative by Los Angeles City Councilmember and livability champion José Huizar. Huizar and LADOT incorporated them as a feature in street improvements that are accompanying Metro’s Regional Connector construction. Huizar, via a press release, touted the new signals: “Complete Streets improvements, like Pedestrian Headstart Signals, make our streets safer for pedestrians while encouraging foot traffic in Downtown Los Angeles’s increasingly dynamic urban environment.”

In 2014, the L.A. Transportation Department (LADOT) installed Leading Pedestrian Intervals on Broadway at 3rd and 4th Streets.

Over the last two weekends, LADOT added over a dozen new head start signals, bringing the total to 16 downtown L.A. intersections, all in the Historic Core and Civic Center areas. Leading Pedestrian Intervals are currently installed at these intersections:  Read more…

10 Comments

Garcetti, LADOT and Xerox Announce New GoLA Multi-Modal App

Mayor Garcetti announcing the GoLA app this morning. Photo: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

Mayor Garcetti announcing the GoLA app this morning. Photo: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

Los Angeles has a new transportation app that helps Angelenos choose ways to get around. The GoLA “Mobility Marketplace” App shows various transportation modes, including bicycling, transit, taxi, ride-hailing, driving, and parking and allows users to compare modes to see what is fastest, cheapest, or greenest. The app is a collaboration between Xerox and the city of Los Angeles, shepherded by the Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Chief Innovation Technology Officer, Peter Marx.

Mayor Garcetti demonstrated the new app this morning at a press event in the city’s Automated Traffic Surveillance and Control (ATSAC) bunker, four floors below City Hall East. City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield described the app as a “magic blender” combining transit schedules, Thomas Guide maps, traffic, and more.

 

Xerox Senior Vice President David Cummins stated that the app includes a broader spread of multimodal options than typical transportation apps, such as Google Maps. Cummins expressed enthusiasm about future features planned, including not just viewing multi-modal trips, but booking and paying for them via GoLA. Cummins also announced anticipated future features including gamification, “comparing your carbon footprint with your Facebook friends,” and possible Vision Zero features.

No Comments

Eyes on the Street: Parklet Underway on Motor Avenue

xxx

Under-construction parklet spotted on Motor Avenue in Palms. Photos by Jonathan Weiss/Streetsblog L.A.

Last week, a new parklet opened in downtown L.A.’s South Park. The next People St parklet installation is already underway on Motor Avenue in Palms. The parklet pictured is in front of C&M Cafe at 3272 Motor Avenue, a block south of the Metro Expo Line Phase 2 and the Expo bikeway’s Northvale gap. Motor was improved with a road diet and bike lanes in 2012.

Motor Avenue will be receiving two parklets; the second (and larger) parklet will be at 3370 Motor Avenue.

More early construction photos after the jump.  Read more…

13 Comments

Open House Showcases Expo Bike Path Gap Closure Options

Last night's Expo Bikeway meeting. Photo: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

Last night’s Expo Bikeway meeting. Photo: Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

An overflow crowd of more than one hundred people showed up to last night’s Expo Bike Path meeting at the Palms-Rancho Park Branch Library. A representative from Councilmember Paul Koretz welcomed the boisterous crowd before turning the open house over to L.A. City Transportation Department (LADOT) Senior Bicycle Coordinator Michelle Mowery.

The crowd appeared to be about half from L.A.’s bicycling community about half from the adjacent Cheviot Hills neighborhood. Many Cheviot Hills neighbors have actively opposed to both the Metro Expo rail line and the Expo bike path.

Mowery stressed that “no decisions have been made” about how to close the 0.7-mile “Northvale gap” in the Expo bikeway. She stated that the meeting would be just an open house, and requested that all concerns be submitted in writing. As Mowery directed attendees to speak with city staff at an array of poster stations, disparaging comments were uttered by attendees: “this is ridiculous” and “we’re like sitting ducks”  – apparently by neighbors opposed to the bikeway.

In mid-2016, when the completed portions of the Expo bike path open, LADOT plans an “interim detour” sharrowed bike route on Northvale Road from Overland Avenue to Motor Avenue. This route avoids nearby heavily-trafficked streets, but is not great for bicycling as it is rather hilly close to Motor Avenue.

The final gap closure bikeway will run in a relatively flat alignment, just north of the Metro Expo Line tracks. There were three design options presented, described after the jump below. Read more…

3 Comments

Downtown L.A. Celebrates New Parklet On Hope Street

Ribbon Cutting

This morning’s Hope Street Parklet ribbon cutting. Left to right: Tony Chou of CoCo Fresh, Mack Urban CEO Paul Keller, L.A. City Councilmember Jose Huizar, LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds, and Jessica Lall Executive Director of the South Park BID. Photos by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

People Street meets Hope Street.

Just over a hundred people attended the grand opening of Los Angeles’ newest parklet, located on Hope Street just below 11th Street in the downtown L.A. neighborhood of South Park.

In case you are not familiar with the term, a parklet is a mini-park that replaces a parking space or two. Though it is an informal practice all around the world, the concept got its start in San Francisco. L.A. County’s first parklet was in Long Beach. Now they have spread to Huntington Park, East L.A., Northeast L.A., and other parts of downtown.

The latest parklet is actually the first to come to completion under the official LADOT People St program where communities can request parklets, plazas, and bike corrals. People St projects require a community partner; this one was shepherded by South Park Business Improvement District.

South Park is changing dramatically, with a great deal of new high-rise residential development open, and more on the way. The parklet’s Hope Street block has undergone a dramatic transformation in the past couple years. What had been just an anonymous parking structure added ground floor retail. The BID repaired the sidewalks and replaced the street trees. Now the parklet extends the already walkable, inviting atmosphere.

Enjoy the photo essay of today’s opening celebration – after the jump.  Read more…