When is a roundabout not a roundabout?
Evidently, when it’s located roundabout the beach in Santa Monica.
It’s not that the city by the sea hasn’t made great strides in recent years, particularly in justifying its designation as a Bicycle Friendly Community. The new Green Street on Ocean Park Blvd. shows Santa Monica’s commitment to re-imagining streets to accommodate all road users, as well as the environment.
On the other hand, some of the legacy streets could stand to see some improvement. Like tiny Bay Street between Neilson Way and the beach, for instance.
One of the problems for those of us who ride our bikes to the beach from points further inland is how to access the popular Santa Monica and Venice sections of the beachfront Marvin Braude bike path (pdf) that runs along the coast from Pacific Palisades to Palos Verdes.
The bluffs that protect the city from the sea also limit direct access to the coast, as does the dangerously high-speed traffic that careens along PCH all day and night throughout the week.
For some, the answer is the walkway that runs under the coast highway at West Channel Drive, allowing riders to walk their bikes down a flight of stairs and underneath the speeding traffic. Assuming they don’t mind traversing a dark and secluded walkway, completely hidden from public view.