City/Locals Clash on Pico-Olympic Plan
1:38 AM PST on January 10, 2008
Actually, every speaker except one testified about the cost to the community and businesses of losing the parking along Pico Boulevard in some form or another. Much of the concern comes from the lack of parking in the neighborhoods surrounding these corridors. Thus the argument goes, if you take away their street parking, you eventually take away the businesses. If you take away the businesses and speed up the traffic flow...well, then you're just turning these boulevards into a mini-highway.
The other two phases are improving directional signalization (a two day experiment with better signal timing along Pico Boulevard yielded a 45% "more efficient" commute) and "peak directional flow" where the adjacent lane to the "preferred" lane is changed to a peak lane. In layman’s terms, one westbound lane on Pico would be made an eastbound lane and the opposite would happen on Olympic. The total cost of the project is relatively low; $2.1 million would cover all three phases of the project. Currently, LADOT is asking for only $600,000 to pay for Phase I and Phase II.
Councilman Bill Rosendahl, claims neutrality over what the plan should look like although he is enthused by any thinking outside the box on this issue and was doubly enthused by the turnout and testimony at this event. "This town hall tonight is my effort to bring together the Mar Vista neighborhood council, the West LA neighborhood council and my (local and appointedby the Councilman) empowerment Congress," said the Councilman.
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