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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

LA Funds “Vision Zero” Traffic Study

LOS ANGELES – In dramatic action that will vastly increase the amount of money the City of Los Angeles invests in Vision Zero – a program designed to end all traffic fatalities, including those involving bicycle riders and pedestrians, in LA in the next decade – the Los Angeles City Council today approved an allocation of more than $27 million for Vision Zero projects.

In an unanimous vote, the Council supported a motion authored by Councilmembers Mike Bonin and Paul Krekorian to allocate money the City of Los Angeles will receive from various sources — including the recently approved Measure M sales tax increase, as well as a gas tax increase passed by the State Legislature, to Vision Zero. The Bonin/Krekorian motion brings the city’s investment in Vision Zero for the coming fiscal year to a total of $27,242,062 – much more than the $3,000,000 allocated in the current year’s budget.

“Budgets are statements about our priorities, and I know of no higher priority than saving lives on our streets,” said Bonin. “Today’s exciting progress was made possible by the clarion call from Mayor Garcetti to make Vision Zero a strategic priority, as well as the hard work and collaboration of my colleagues Paul Krekorian, Nury Martinez, Marqueece Harris-Dawson and Jose Huizar. Today’s vote shows that the City of Los Angeles is going to step up to make our streets safer and our communities better places to live, work and enjoy.”

“Reducing pedestrian and traffic fatalities is something we urgently need to work toward,” said Krekorian, who serves as the Chair of the Council’s Budget and Finance Committee. “By funding Vision Zero projects for the coming year, we are taking a big and necessary step forward, one that Angelenos will appreciate because these resources will make our streets and neighborhoods safer.”

“I was proud to join Councilmember Bonin in advocating for important Vision Zero funding. Resurfacing streets is important, but if people are dying or being seriously injured on our streets, what good is a resurfaced street?” said Councilmember Nury Martinez. “Too many people are killed and injured on our streets, so funding Vision Zero is an absolute priority for me – we must stop talking about reducing traffic accidents and actually put resources behind this goal.”

“Today’s vote is not just about Vision Zero, we are creating a better Los Angeles. Right now, LA is the car capital of the world. As we fight to redefine our City, pedestrian safety will be more important than ever,” said Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. “However, parts of the City, like South LA and the North East Valley, have a serious problem: the basic infrastructure was never built and residents are paying with their lives. In parts of the City, the simple act of walking can become a life or death decision. Our kids can’t wait and our seniors can’t wait. We need to build for the future today.”

“After years of effort, we now have a Mobility Plan that will prioritize pedestrian, cyclist, and public transit use as much as automobiles with a big focus on safety,” said Councilmember José Huizar. “Direct funding to Vision Zero in this and future budgets is critical to saving lives and honoring the goals and aspirations of Vision Zero and our Mobility Plan. I thank the Mayor, Transportation Chair Bonin and all our City Council partners for their work on this effort.”

Every year, more than 200 people are killed while trying to move throughout Los Angeles. Nearly half the people killed on LA streets are those who were walking or bicycling, and an alarming number of them are children and older adults. In fact, traffic collisions are a leading cause of death for children in Los Angeles, and during this year’s budget hearings, Los Angeles Police Department Chief Charlie Beck revealed that more people have died in LA so far in 2017 after traffic collisions than have been killed by gun violence.

Vision Zero is LA’s commitment to eliminate all traffic deaths by 2025. As directed by Mayor Garcetti, this citywide effort brings together transportation engineers, police officers, advocates, and policymakers to work together towards creating safer streets, with a focus on protecting the most vulnerable road users, including children, older adults, and people walking and bicycling. Vision Zero focuses on engineering, enforcement and education, with equity and engagement driving all Vision Zero improvements. The money allocated in this year’s budget will be focused on engineering solutions to “lead by design” on the sections of roadway statistically proven to be the most dangerous in the city.

Since launching Vision Zero in 2015, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation has identified a network of streets, the High Injury Network (HIN), where strategic investments will have the biggest impact in reducing deaths and severe injuries. Despite making up only six percent of our city streets, nearly two-thirds of all deaths and severe injuries involving people walking occur on the HIN. The budget allocation approved by the City Council today will provide enough funding for “Phase 1” improvements to be made on priority corridors on the high injury network, allowing for lane striping, roadway painting, the installation of bollards and traffic signs, as well as signal timing.

Comment (1)

  1. Anonymous

    What a waste of money. Instead, make streets safer by repairing, paving and striping them well and spend some of the moola on more traffic cops, drivers education, bicycle riders education, and a media campaign promoting safer and more courteous driving. The end is near for widespread personal car use in urban centers anyhow because of the high cost of car ownership, finding parking or paying dearly for it, and the plain aggravation of driving. Uber et al and whatever the taxi business turns into will take up the slack. Like most things these LA politician’s projects – study and plan for some sort of expensive pie-in-the-sky vision, instead of looking at the various futures and let that guide programs that will show improvement immediately.

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