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Measure HLA - Healthy Streets

City Leaders Rally in Support of Measure HLA – the Healthy Streets Initiative

"Angelenos deserve to feel safe on our roads... it's important that we invest in the infrastructure that will foster safe streets for all - families, young people, our elders."

L.A. City Councilmember Nithya Raman speaking at Yes on HLA event. Photos by Joe Linton/Streetsblog

This afternoon, with an East Hollywood Yes on HLA billboard as a backdrop, Healthy Streets initiative supporters gathered to urge voters to turn out for safer streets. Four of the six pro-HLA City Councilmembers spoke on the urgency of approving Measure HLA to make L.A. streets safer.

If HLA passes, the city will be required to gradually implement walk, bus, and bike improvements that were already approved in the city's Mobility Plan nearly a decade ago. Improvements would be routinely included as the city resurfaces streets.

L.A. City Councilmember Eunisses Hernandez speaking in favor of Measure HLA

Councilmember Eunisses Hernandez spoke movingly of meeting a 29-year-old man who had barely survived a car crash. The victim's mother told Hernandez that "before, he was very active - he would ride his bike everywhere." When Hernandez met him, "he was in a bed in a hospital, having been there for months already... he got hit while he was riding his bike."

"His whole entire body was broken. From head to toe - broken."

Hernandez spoke further of visiting schools in her district with bike racks completely full, "yet you go out of the school" and there is "not a single bike lane around the school."

"Angelenos deserve to feel safe on our roads," Hernandez declared, "it's important that we invest in the infrastructure that will foster safe streets for all - families, young people, our elders." She foresees HLA helping lead to a future that addresses resource disparities between neighborhoods, "where we have more bike lanes and bus lanes, where our sidewalks and streets are regularly repaired, and where speed-calming measures are implemented - in all of our neighborhoods."

Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martínez spoke of the urgency of passing Measure HLA. "These High Injury Network streets happen to be in the most poor areas of our city - the ones that have historically been redlined - and it's mostly working class people that are biking, walking or taking public transit... who are being killed every single day," he said.

Both Councilmembers Nithya Raman and Katy Yaroslavsky spoke of their fears as mothers of young children, and how scary it is to cross unsafe streets just to walk their kids to school.

Raman drew attention to the need for Mobility Plan improvements to be implemented citywide, "in a way that is connected, that enables people to get out of their cars." She concluded by calling Measure HLA "smart public safety-oriented policy-making."

Councilmember Yaroslavsky began her remarks by saying, "I don't think that there's any one thing we as a city can do that would be more consequential around climate and sustainability than building out a protected connected bike network making it safe and easy for people to get out of their cars."

Yaroslavsky alluded to Los Angeles needing to go even further than HLA, terming the measure the "base level of what we need to do" and stressing the systemic change needed in the city, including ongoing "dedicated funding for capital improvements that prioritize bike and pedestrian safety."

Streetsblog endorses a yes vote on Measure HLA. The city firefighter union is opposing. Learn more and get involved by visiting the Yes on HLA website. Election day is Tuesday, March 5, less than three weeks from today.

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