Though a sometimes cyclist himself, CD5 CM Paul Koretz angeres a lot of riders by vetoing bike lanes on Westwood Blvd. Photo:KPCC
Yesterday, Streetsblog’s Damien Newton broke the news that plans for bike lanes on Westwood Boulevard between National and Santa Monica, were, in effect, dead in the water.
According to the story, CD5 Council Member Paul Koretz had unexpectedly come out in opposition to the lanes. And given the exceptional power LA councilmembers have over what does or doesn’t get built in their districts, his opposition alone is probably enough to kill the plans.
Last night, Koretz’ office released a statement confirming his stand against the lanes, which was forwarded in an email from the Westwood South of Santa Monica Homeowners’ Association, most of whose members have strongly opposed the project. While the statement came through a third party, a representative from Koretz’ office has confirmed its accuracy and authenticity.
November 13, 2013
As I announced early this year, I support exploring the option of bike lanes along Sepulveda Blvd. north from National Blvd.
At that time, I also stated my opposition to a proposal for bike lanes on Westwood Blvd.
I was subsequently approached by representatives of the cycling community, who requested that the City investigate a second and possibly less intrusive floating bike lane concept, to be employed on Westwood Blvd.
I appreciate that the cycling community has been contemplative and creative in arriving at such a suggested
option, but I have come to the realization that even this concept would have substantial negative impacts on the movement of traffic, and would cause significant changes for parking conditions along this corridor. I have also received critical input from many in the community who are certain that a floating bike lane along
Westwood Blvd. would prove far too confusing and disruptive for motorists and cyclists alike, and is therefore untenable.
Consequently, I will not be supporting the exploration of the floating bike lane concept nor other options for bike lanes along this crucial commercial corridor.
I will support further investigation of the viability of Sepulveda as a corridor for bicycle infrastructure,
and/or the exploration of other north/south residential corridors if they can be made viable.
However, many supporters of the Westwood bike lanes have questioned parts of that statement, particularly the conclusion that the lanes would be disruptive to traffic.
Which traffic, he does not say, since bike lanes would only enhance bicycle traffic on the boulevard.