Today’s L.A. Transportation Committee: Speeding, Bikes On Parking Meters

Flowchart on addressing speeding issues. Image via Strong Towns
Flowchart on addressing speeding issues. Image via Strong Towns

This afternoon the Los Angeles City Council was scheduled to hold its first hearing on motion 15-1006 aimed to reduce speeding and curb unsafe speed limit increases. Unfortunately the item was postponed to a future Transportation Committee meeting. 

Longtime readers of Streetsblog will recall that the city of Los Angeles is, to a large extent, at the mercy of car-centric California laws (outlined in the Department of Transportation – LADOT – staff report [PDF]) that essentially mandate ever-increasing speed limits. For L.A. to enforce speed limits, it must study existing speeds and raise speed limits to align with any speeding behavior encountered.

From the motion [PDF] put forward by City Councilmembers Mike Bonin, Mitch Englander, and Joe Buscaino:

The current mechanisms for setting speed limits and conducting speed enforcement were developed in an era that did not have Vision Zero as a guiding principle. Additionally, technology has evolved since the traditional methodologies were developed. Speed enforcement should reflect modern policy objectives and technological tools.

I THEREFORE MOVE that the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) in consultation with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) report to the Transportation and Public Safety Committees on the current impediments to agile and effective speed enforcement and recommendations for how to enhance Los Angeles’ ability to enforce safe travel speeds; and

I FURTHER MOVE that LADOT in consultation with LAPD report back on potential pilot projects that can be implemented quickly to reduce speeding. The analysis should include but not be limited to: innovative speed zoning practices, signal timing, enforcement practices and changes to state legislation.

The committee did approve preferential parking districts, no-vehicle-sales areas, and motion 15-0701 which will allow bike parking at parking meters in Westwood. Parking meter bike parking is currently against the law in Los Angeles. Bicycle Advisory Committee chair testified that the scope of the motion should be expanded to just allow bikes to park at all meters citywide.

Committee items will need to be approved by the full City Council before taking effect.

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LADOT: Good at Increasing Speed Limits, Bad at Installing Crosswalks

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An article in yesterday’s City Watch perfectly illustrates exactly what is wrong with the Los Angeles Department of Transportation.  It seems the Department is nigh powerless to install pedestrian safety amenities, even when the funding is available, but can move with swiftness and dedication when it comes to raising speed limits. The City Watch article […]