CicLAvia Iconic Wilshire Boulevard 2017 – Open Thread

People of all ages enjoyed yesterday's CicLAvia event. All photos Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.
People of all ages enjoyed yesterday's CicLAvia event. All photos Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.
This article supported by Los Angeles Bicycle Attorney. Click on the bar for more information.
This article supported by Los Angeles Bicycle Attorney as part of a general sponsorship package. All opinions in the article are that of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of LABA. Click on the ad for more information.

Yesterday, the final CicLAvia of the year opened Wilshire Boulevard. The roughly four-mile route extended from downtown Los Angeles to Koreatown. Tens of thousands of cyclists, runners, walkers, skaters and more enjoyed quiet car-free streets.

Businesses along the route were crowded with parked bikes. Lots of families were enjoying stress-free bicycling, scootering and skating.

The cool crisp late fall day was conducive to outdoor activity, in contrast to recent unhealthy air quality due to forest fires. The nearly-winter shorter days meant a 3 p.m. end time, a bit earlier than the 4 p.m. end that Angelenos have become accustomed to. Some cyclists were surprised to see LAPD and LADOT reopening the route earlier than expected.

Wilshire Boulevard showcases some of Los Angeles' most iconic landmark architecture, including Bullocks Wilshire (now Southwestern Law School)
Wilshire Boulevard showcases some of Los Angeles’ most iconic landmark architecture, including Bullocks Wilshire (now Southwestern Law School)
Yesterday's CicLAvia route extended from Koreatown to downtown L.A.
Yesterday’s CicLAvia route extended from Koreatown to downtown L.A.
Spotted along the CicLAvia route for the first time: dockless bike-share (see early SBLA coverage)
Spotted along the CicLAvia route for the first time: dockless bike-share (see earlier SBLA coverage)
The CicLAvia route included this stretch where Wilshire cuts through MacArthur Park
The CicLAvia route included this stretch where Wilshire cuts through MacArthur Park

Yesterday was the fifth CicLAvia of 2017, though that is just official CicLAvias run by cities partnering with the non-profit CicLAvia. With Metro’s open streets program funding events throughout L.A. County, it has become difficult to keep track of the roughly a dozen open streets events this year. 2017 saw CicLAvias in Culver/Venice, Glendale/AtwaterSan Pedro/Wilmington, Heart of L.A. and Wilshire, plus other great open streets events in Long Beach (University and Uptown), SGV, Downey, Whittier, and Santa Monica. Did SBLA miss any?

Readers, how was your CicLAvia yesterday along Wilshire? How was your 2017 in terms of open streets events?  What should CicLAvia, Metro, and local municipalities focus on as they plan for future open streets festivals? Do you prefer new or old routes? Long or short routes? More or less programming? More or less frequent events? What would you like to see? What could take L.A. County open streets to a new level?

  • Walt Arrrrr

    I didn’t go, but if I had I would have told Eric Garcetti to go #$@&% himself. I mean, at what point does CicLAvia go from being inspiration to pacification? Here Los Angeles, enjoy this car-free street with your friends and family for six hours while we rip out bike lanes, re-direct sidewalk funding, prevent road diets, give motor traffic signal priority over train traffic, reduce bus service, install buttons so you can beg to walk across wide stroaderific intersections, and do everything we can to maintain Los Angeles’ cars-first paradigm while giving lip service to Vision Zero as the death toll continues to rise.

  • Cali_Patriot

    Took the entire family, great job Ciclavia! I have lived/watched San Francisco and Portland revitalize after accommodating bikes as serious transportation. So only comment would be to schedule more of these. At least once a quarter. My daughter was here from Oregon and grew up in Orange County, this was the only time she’s actually seen L.A. because of this event. Only other L.A. experiences for her are The Staple Center.

  • Joe Linton

    You’re welcome to make whatever statement you want… but, as someone who was involved in getting CicLAvia going, I would assert that its roots very much included pacification. In 2010, after jerking cyclists around with a crappy drawn-out bike plan process, and under a lot of criticism (arguably most vocally by Stephen Box and the Bike Writers Collective – but also from others), the city was under pressure to “do something” for cyclists. My reading between the lines is that city staff preferred doing a “special event” which they figured would probably fail miserably. Instead it blew up on them, and the city got a lot of kudos for doing something good… and that generated some momentum for facilities, plans, etc. So… the question for me is how we can, today, make these events more inspirational?

  • senorroboto

    >So only comment would be to schedule more of these. At least once a quarter.

    There were 5 CicLAvia events this year and 4 the last two years

  • calwatch

    I thought it was good turnout, although not as much as three or four years ago when these events were more novel. The Downtown core is one that should be done twice a year, with one in each outlying area. In LA County, the areas that haven’t seen open streets events are Santa Clarita, the West San Fernando Valley, the Pomona Valley (that is being fixed next year), Southwest Los Angeles (Westmont, Athens, etc.) and the South Bay beach cities.

  • calwatch

    Not to mention all the independent events, which generally don’t get as good turnout but may get more people from the local areas. Ciclavia is a regional organization and their events draw regionally, as evidenced by all the times the Metrolink is clogged with bikes due to it. But a Viva SGV or Whittier Walk and Roll does not get the regional turnout.

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