Eyes on the Street: Downtown L.A. Bikeways on 1st, 3rd, and 7th Streets
Downtown L.A. has one of the best bike lane networks in Southern California, and it’s gradually getting better. The city recently added new bike lane stretches on First and Third Streets, while continuing construction underway on curb-protected bike lanes on Seventh Street. Streetsblog checked out the new facilities yesterday.
The new First Street bike lanes are located between San Pedro Street and Alameda Street. These connect with existing bike lanes on First Street along City Hall and over Bunker Hill, and also connect to the recent bike lane that extends east across the L.A. River.
The First Street bike lanes are part of Metro’s larger Eastside Access Improvements which makes walking and bicycling connections to Metro’s under construction Regional Connector Little Tokyo subway station. The new connector subway is nearly completed and expected to open in early 2023.
Readers can check out the new First Street lanes on this Sunday’s CicLAvia route. When CicLAvia debuted in 2010 on a variation of route known today as “Heart of L.A.,” that original 7.5-mile route had no bike lanes at all. Since then, the city has added bike lanes along much of the original route: 7th Street, Spring Street, and now the entire CicLAvia stretch of 1st Street.
Along the south end of Little Tokyo is 3rd Street, where the city of L.A. City Transportation Department (LADOT) recently announced bikeway upgrades. That project upgrades the existing westbound 3rd Street bike lane to parking-protected, and closes a network gap by extending that lane to connect to the Main and Spring Street bikeways. Construction appears to be more-or-less complete, with plastic bollards added this week.
Between Main and Spring Streets, the 3rd Street project upgraded the formerly one-way protected lane into a two-way facility.
Lastly, a few blocks south, in Skid Row, construction is continuing on curb-protected bike lanes on 7th Street – the city’s first significant length curb-protected bike lanes. The curb work is done for just one block (between San Pedro Street and San Julian Street), but now a couple more blocks appear nearly done. Ultimately, the facility will extend from San Pedro Street to Figueroa Street.