Under Metro’s proposal, 12 different CicLAvia open streets festivals will take place in various cities throughout Los Angeles County. Photo: Joe Linton/Streetsblog LA
It is not fully approved or completely finalized, but a document has circulated that shows Metro’s staff recommendations for open streets events for FY2015-16. Open streets events, or ciclovías, are car-free festivals primarily for bicycling and walking, more or less the same as Los Angeles’ popular CicLAvia.
So far in L.A. County, cities, primarily the city of Los Angeles, have partnered with the CicLAvia nonprofit organization to host these events. The new Metro list shows the popular event spreading out to new cities and new neighborhoods, and new cities working with new organizational partners.
Metro has become a major sponsor for open streets events, allocating $2 million in event funding for each of the next two fiscal years, July 1st through June 30th. The agency is allocating the funding to cities that apply. Metro received about two dozen applications, ranked them, and recommended funding twelve upcoming events.
Nearly all the planned events connect with Metro’s rail system. Two open streets events are projected to coincide with the grand openings for Metro’s Gold and Expo rail line extensions under construction.
Metro’s guidelines, as stated in the document, prioritize “funding one event per city before funding multiple events.” Proportionally, this puts larger cities–Los Angeles and Long Beach–at somewhat of a competitive disadvantage.
The city of Long Beach applied to host three “Beach Streets” events, but only received funding for one, to take place in northwest Long Beach.
The city of Los Angeles applied for funding for both San Fernando Valley and South L.A. events, but only received funding for SFV. The city of Los Angeles also found a way to squeeze in a third CicLAvia event. L.A.’s “Heart of Los Angeles” route centered on downtown L.A. is being extended east into unincorporated East L.A., so it is hosted by the County of Los Angeles, despite the event being mostly within L.A. city limits.
In future calls, perhaps there could be prioritization of limited funding using some sort of per capita criteria.
Map of upcoming FY 2015 and 2016 Los Angeles County open streets event. From Metro document
The upcoming open streets events list was
made public on the Metro website and circulated by @Calwatch via Twitter. The “open streets recommendations” document is posted here. Update: Per Metro, the document was not officially made public yet, and the full report, which may differ from what was posted, will be released in early June. While the document includes a map (above) it is not easy to tell exactly what streets are included in each event.
The document represents the Metro staff recommendations. The funding list will still need to be approved by the Metro Planning and Programming Committee, then the full Metro Board. These approvals are expected in June 2014. Though there are maps and dates specified, open streets events go through a lot of changes, so consider these tentative.
Below is the full list of upcoming open streets events slated for approval, listed in date order. Read more…