How About a Half Dozen CicLAvias in 2011?

The CicLAvia team met last night to review the lessons learned from last Sunday’s amazing open street festival in Los Angeles. Apparently, the committee was as happy with the results as everyone else that attended the event because they’re hoping to program between four and six CicLAvias for 2011. One of those would mirror the route from last Sunday, but the others would be in other areas around the city.

So here’s the deal, instead of a StreetPoll for this Friday, I’m challenging you to come up with your own CicLAvia route.  You can leave your comment here, or at the CicLAvia blog (or both).  I’m going to be on a light publishing schedule on Monday, but we’ll have a Streetpoll up with the best suggestions and you all can vote on your favorite suggested route.  The winner wins either a Streetsblog t-shirt or a “Best of L.A. Streetfilms DVD.”  Of course, I’ve developed my own Westside Route, which you can see after the jump.

Screen shot 2010-10-15 at 10.40.12 AM

Damien’s suggestion : CicLAvia to the Sea

Santa Monica is on record that they want to do their own Ciclovia style event sometime next year.  So why not encourage them to get involved by planning one with the CicLAvia team by having a route right down Venice Boulevard that starts at the Culver City border, runs through West Los Angeles and cuts through Culver City all the way to the Ocean.  If people don’t think this four and a half mile route is long enough, we can add a spur up Abott Kinney, but I think that this would probably be challenging enough.

Or, we could ask Culver City to get on board and extend the route east through Culver City.  If Culver City would get on board, we could theoretically extend the route all the way to Downtown Los Angeles.

But for now, I’m sticking with my simple 4.5 mile  short route suggestion: Culver City to the Ocean on Venice Boulevard.  If you’ve got a better idea, prove it below.

  • Kevin

    Access to the route, whatever it turns out to be, should be a large consideration when planning. One of the things that made the first CicLAvia so great was the easy access to the route via the Metro. We came from the San Fernando Valley and didn’t have to drive a car at all… just took the subway to downtown. Getting to Culver City would be tougher (not just for me but for a lot of folks with families, etc.) so parking might have to be a big consideration. I do, however, like the idea of a route to the beach…

  • Community outreach and community input is key. The CicLAvia folks approached me in early 2009 and did presentations to the East Hollywood NC in the Fall of last year, which is one of the reasons the route’s western terminus was in our community (plus we’re accessible to everything :)).

    I’m all for a rotating cycle (no pun intended) of 4-6 or so regional routes, that way no one gets tired of the event and it’s exciting for everyone. I do want to see a more interesting route for the Westside; a straight line is kind of boring, not to mention the fact that Venice already has a bike lane. I would wager the one of the “hidden agendas” behind CicLAvia is to promote potential corridors for permanent bike infrastructure.

    As for accessibility, why don’t we have CicLAvia Westside AFTER the Exposition Light Rail line opens!

    Thanks for the video embed, Damien!

  • View Untitled in a larger map

  • Joseph E

    The Expo Line should be opening to at least Crenshaw & Exposition during 2011.

    I propose that one of the events should follow the first phase of the Expo light rail line, and continue thru Downtown LA to Chinatown. This will provide access from the Harbor and El Monte busways, the Gold Line, the Blue line, both subway lines, and of course the Expo Line, and will get people to experience South Park and some of the nicer parts of South LA.

    Assuming the route should be 7 miles long, here is my suggestion: LA Historic State Park (Spring at Elmyra), turn south on Alameda, then west on 1st, south on Broadway, west on 7th, South on Figueroa to Exposition, west on Exposition to Western (7 miles):

    If I can expand to about 10 miles, extend the route west to Crenshaw & Exposition, and from Downtown go straight up broadway to Pasadena, and end at Hertiage Square (near Flying Pigeon / Bike Oven):

  • My ‘My Maps’ Google Maps feature has a mind of its own today and is insisting on its own CicLAvia route no matter what I put. Please ignore the link above.

  • I like Joseph E’s idea. This would be a great way to celebrate the opening of both the Expo Line and its parallel bikeway.

    I like the idea of iconic routes and so for westside route, I’d start at an existing rail station like Wilshire/Western and see how far west you can go. Maybe we can do a Subway to the Sea CicLAvia?

    Alternative: UCLA to the beach via Westwood and Pico. Both streets have character and lots of businesses to patronize, but wouldn’t destroy traffic if closed.,-118.4290982+to:34.0168606,-118.4744974+to:Pico+Blvd&hl=en&geocode=FQjIBwIdqKrw-A%3BFSxoBwIdVurw-CkVm-vborvCgDF2Exii-2fLFQ%3BFVwOBwId_zjw-ClffgWMJbvCgDGyte3vcktyoA%3BFerpBgIdWPvv-A&mra=dpe&mrcr=0&mrsp=2&sz=15&via=1,2&sll=34.01521,-118.472185&sspn=0.019707,0.038581&ie=UTF8&ll=34.035591,-118.460598&spn=0.078809,0.154324&z=13

  • Joseph E

    Actually, it’s possible the Expo Line will open to La Cienega in mid to late 2011 instead. In that case, I would do a route from Union station thru Downtown along Figeuroa, around USC, west on Jefferson: (for a 10 mile route; 7 miles would not reach 7th Street)

  • Joseph E

    If we can double the length to 14 miles, we could go all the way from Highland Park to La Cienega, via N Figueroa, Pasadena, N Broadway, Alameda, 1st, S Broadway, 7th, S Figueroa, USC, and Jefferson, :

  • Joseph E

    North East LA: Metro Center to Highland Park (7th, Broadway, Pasadena, N Figueroa). This is the north half the of the last route. Map:
    Okay, that’s my last idea. ;-)

  • I suggest a future route that spans Wilshire all the way. I believe Ciclovia closes down the main artery or Bogota, so it seems sensible to do likewise here, especially considering some of the parks and businesses along the way.

  • Joseph E

    @ Eric B: You can make a 7 mile route from Westwood to Santa Monica if you extend it to the center of the UCLA campus, and to the Santa Monica Pier:

  • Erik G.

    Hopefully LA Metro will run the same single-car service on the Expo Line that they did on the Gold Line on CicLAvia Sunday morning.

    Of course the Expo Line will use the same Light Rail cars which have no seats removed for bicycles, strollers, etc. unlike the Subway cars that do now have such accommodation.

  • Studio city/ North Hollywood route

    One of many configurations I can think of

    Red Line/Orange line Location Friendly

  • Carter R

    I vote for Wilshire from Ocean Ave to Grand Ave. All 17 miles of it.

  • Joseph E

    For comparison and planning, Bogota (8 million people, 16 x 8 miles) has 80 miles of routes, mainly on huge boulevards and expressways, as well as major streets, opened for Ciclovia every Sunday and Holiday from 7 am to 2 pm:

    Ciclovia on Google Maps:,-74.092827&spn=0.259042,0.237236&z=12

    Compare to this map of central Los Angeles at the same scale:,-74.092827&sspn=0.259042,0.237236&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Los+Angeles,+California&ll=34.040427,-118.253403&spn=0.21536,0.237236&z=12

    Los Angeles has a few million more people than Bogota, but spread out over 6 times the urbanized area. Bogota’s urbanized area is about 60,000 people per square mile.

  • Spokker

    They should open up the Red Line for subterranean cycling and walking. Enough of these trains hogging our tunnels.

  • It’s great to see the ideas flowing! A few suggestions – from one of the folks involved with CicLAvia. The routes won’t have to do all of these all the time… but they’re things to keep in mind:

    – connect multiple communities (we pushed hard not to have just an East Hollywood cicLAvia – as much as we dig East Hollywood! Think about routes that span multiple communities and can bring them together. Think of this as a city event – for all!)

    – avoid hills (These are both daunting for beginners to go uphill, and potentially a bit dangerous for beginners to go downhill. I think Wilshire between UCLA and Beverly Hills would be very difficult for this reason)

    – connect with parks and other public spaces (MacArthur and Hollenbeck Parks really helped make 101010 CicLAvia great. We can’t set up things that impede flow in the street – so think about hub spaces – destinations along and at the ends.)

    – connect with underserved communities – places where there are fewer parks and fewer opportunities for physical activity (I’d love to see more ideas that connect with Leimert Park, Pacoima, Wilmington, etc.)

    – connect with transit (including trying to minimize our negative impacts on transit – ie: bus lines)

  • Adam Bray-Ali

    My suggestion is to use Crenshaw or Vermont from one end to the other. Think of it as connecting mid-city with the South Bay.

  • Erik G.


    So long as they turn off the Third Rail!

    How about a double-header? Two CicLAvias in one day?

  • Haha, even with the third rail turned off, the tunnels are dangerous if not impossible to ride/walk through. The fire extinguisher and water drainage infrastructure is located in between the rails. Lots of tripping, falling and lawsuits. And the emergency walkway on the side is way too narrow.

  • I am enjoying the ideas!

    Regarding distances: there’s nothing definitive about 7.5 miles – and there’s no hard-and-fast rule. My hunch is that we wouldn’t do less than ~2-3 miles because it becomes a sort of Farmers’ Market type of closure – which is wonderful, but might not really draw bikes (maybe that’s good, though – a more walking-oriented CicLAvia?) Bogota does 80 miles every Sunday – so it can certainly go longer… though I suspect that, as one time 2011 event, costs could become prohibitive if it gets too long… but 10-20 miles (maybe more) certainly isn’t out of the question. It doesn’t have to be one line either – could be a loop, a Y, a P (loop with tail), or some other configuration.

    Here are some half-baked ideas of mine… though I am one of the organizers, these are just some ideas… not officially from the CicLAvia committee, but from the head of Joe: (sorry – these are rough – I tend to start with some points/destinations/communities, not so much with specific streets.)

    1 – Leimert Park to Venice (maybe including Crenshaw, Pico, and ?? – could connect with Santa Monica)
    2 – Pacoima to North Hollywood (maybe including Van Nuys Blvd, Sherman Way, Lankershim ?? – feeder connections: Orange Line, Burbank-Chandler bike path)
    3 – Little Tokyo to Watts Towers (maybe including Central Ave, ?? – maybe also connect to USC neighborhood, maybe other south east cities – Huntington Park??)
    4 – Wilmington, San Pedro, Long Beach (including the big harbor bridges, ??)
    5 – Downtown Los Angeles River Bridges route (maybe including about half a dozen downtown bridges: North Broadway, Cesar Chavez, 6th, Olympic – includes Chinatown Downtown, Boyle Heights, Lincoln Heights – maybe connect with LA River bike paths in SE and/or NE??)

    Sorry that’s more ideas than we’re going to be able to do in 2011… and I love the East Hollywood to Boyle Heights route – and hope we do it three times in 2011.

  • NoHo to Glendale: Connect the NoHo arts district east on Magnolia, through Magnolia Park. Over the freeway to Downtown Burbank. Down San Fernando past farmers market and trader joes. Jog up Alameda to Glenoaks through a predominantly armenian comercial district (good eats!). Down Brand to Americana at Brand. North Hollywood, Burbank, and Glendale! I’m a little partial to the Burbank portion and am willing to facilitate whatever I need to.

  • UrbanReason

    I’m a little late to the game, but figured I’d share my fantasy route just for the fun of it. And by fantasy – I mean a “never gonna happen” type of fantasy – it’s 49 miles and connects nearly the whole city. But that’s never stopped me before.

    This route would provide a connection to virtually every corner of LA, including Downtown, China Town, Silverlake/Los Feliz, USC, Koreatown, Culver City & West Hollywood converging on Wilshire @ Robertson headed towards the beach.

  • The first CicLAvia was a smashing success, but lest it fall into the usual pattern of giving transportation options to the wealthy, while overlooking the poor — it is time for CicLAvia to plant its signs and its roots into historic South LA. Streets such as Crenshaw and areas of the Figueroa Corridor, to name a couple examples, speak to the existence of a rich, vibrant community of color that is often looked by transportation experts who decry Los Angeles’ car-driven culture. But the truth is that the most bus, walk, and bike-dependent communities are also the ones most often ignored by those who say we need to change the way we move L.A. This makes no sense. Shouldn’t we cater to the population that needs bike advocacy the most? Rather than the communities that already have the most options?
    Health is another reason to consider South L.A. Along with fighting against poverty and the inevitable food desert, Black and Latin@ populations in South LA are especially plagued with health risks such as diabetes and obesity — part of this is because the neighborhoods in South LA are not the most livable. Many blocks along South LA lack resources, and as such, the streets and areas aren’t made for healthy living; they aren’t conducive to exercise. By bringing CicLAvia to South LA we can assist the many existing bicyclists who are fighting crowded road conditions and dilapidated sidewalks. It’s dangerous to ride a bike in many parts of South LA, and not because of crime statistics, but because there isn’t room for a bike except on pot-holed/obstacle-filled sidewalks.
    Let’s consider environmental justice and full public participation by figuring out which communities need the bike stimulus package of CicLAvia. And I’m not talking trickle-down bikeonomics. A bicycle is a populist symbol and something many of us can own. It’s not as expensive as a car, but with the right road conditions it can bring us everywhere and give us a healthy outlook too. Through CicLAvia — we can encourage merchants and neighbors to interact, and bring richness to an area without bringing in high-end stores, displacing local residents, and gentrifying shamelessly. We can also do something far more valuable — we can open up the imagination and space of CicLAvia for local South LA residents who lack convenient transit access compared to the Westside and wealthier, whiter areas of L.A. South LA is the heart and pulse of L.A. — with a long history of both politics, art, and revolution. If CicLAvia represents change, then change should begin where it is most needed and where it can make the biggest impact.

  • Jerard Wright


    Since when has Westlake, Boyle Heights and Skid Row been wealthy yuppie enclaves that cater to the rich? About the majority of the CicLAVia route served the working class.

  • Jerard Wright

    Misread slightly, However the thing that needs to be kept in mind is that the strength of it is tied to where they tie into parks and plaza spaces. Leimert Park is a thought but I think strategically the next CicLAvia should be the S.F. Valley where the layout is all but auto-oriented and civic spaces lack there too.

  • Hi Jerard — Hope you’re well. For the record so that there are no misreadings of my post: Westlake, Boyle Heights and Skid Row are NOT wealthy yuppie enclaves that cater to the rich, and I am very happy that CicLAvia included these deserving areas! Also, I do think given our car culture and SFV’s place at the top of the pile — it wouldn’t be a bad idea to do it there as one option. Nevertheless, South LA still has my vote because of its history, its marked dearth of health resources, and the presence of connecting plazas such as Leimert Park. Thanks for reading!

  • David Galvan

    Ventura Blvd (and other streets) from Universal City to Warner Center!


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