Garcetti Announces “Great Streets” to Be Named After Current Councilmembers
(UPDATE 2:03 p.m.: Yes, this is an April Fool’s story. No streets, Great or otherwise, were harmed in the writing of this satire. – DN)
Celebrating some of the successes of the Great Streets program, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced a new program to honor the collaborative efforts with the fifteen City Councilmembers that have driven the program. Now every Great Street will be officially renamed on the map for a current City Councilmember.
The Great Streets program seeks to transform a portion of L.A.’s iconic boulevards into “Great Streets” that accommodate all modes of transportation and make the best use of public space by increasing access to shops, restaurants, schools, and parks.
“People have called Great Streets a legacy program,” Garcetti stated. “Think of how proud these leaders will be when these beautiful boulevards become the centers of their districts. Their children and grandchildren will remember the great work they did to make their city a better place.”
Of course, the opposite is true for recalcitrant Councilmembers who have used their offices to block progress in the name of, well, we have yet to figure out why.
“Think of how embarrassed generations of Koretzs will be every time someone is killed by speeding traffic on Paul Koretz Boulevard,” opined Eric Trojans with the Los Angeles City Coalition of Bicycle Coalitions.
For their part, Koretz and other Councilmembers are pushing back against the mayor’s renaming proposal, seeking to block it at the City Council. Koretz spokesperson April Feuel writes, “This proposal flies in the face of the Councilman’s plans to be forgotten 20 minutes after he leaves office.” Curren Price just asked if maybe they could name a parallel street to Central Avenue after him instead.
Street renaming proposals have an uphill fight in the City Council. A proposal by former 4th District Councilmember Tom LaBonge to rename every east-west street in his district “Tom” and every north-south street “LaBonge” was passed by the Council last June. However, the Council overturned its decision in its first meeting in July.
Which is not to say the street-renaming-proposal doesn’t have its supporters. Felipe Fuentes and Mike Bonin just gave the project a thumbs-up. Joe Buscaino proposed an amendment to rename every street along his entire 25-mile bike commute after him instead. Jose Huizar asked that they just rename the butterfly bicycle racks on 1st Street “Huizars.”
Councilmember Mitch Englander also expressed support for the proposal.
“Reseda Boulevard now has the city’s best protected bike lane and has regular programming by business on all the space that’s been reclaimed,” stated Englander on the Council floor. “And I’m supposed to be the conservative in the Council. What the heck is taking the rest of you so long to get your acts together?”