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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Venice Gets No. 4 Scrambled Crosswalk in Los Angeles — Washington and Pacific Blvd

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(Photo courtesy of David Graham-Caso, Chief of Staff to Councilman Bonin.)

(29 Aug 2018)Councilman Mike Bonin, LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds, and Glabe Hartley, Cow’s End owner walk abreast with other dignitaries behind to celebrate the Venice Scrambled Crosswalk opening early Tuesday morning.

Other people had tried it and loved it as cars that had normally been allowed to make a right on a red light honked.

Bikes and Scooters are considered vehicles in California; therefore, they can cross when pedestrians cross only if they walk their bikes or scooters. If they ride, they must go with the cars.

This is one of the most used and confusing intersections in Venice. Not all corners allowed pedestrians, and there were right turns that could turn into walkers. Also there is a bike path in the middle of Washington Blvd, going west,  with cars turning right and cars going forward. All that was confusing is eliminated in the “scramble.” Now it is all stop and cross.  Bikes in the middle can walk their bikes or wait for the light. Getting to the light for bikers is still done carefully.

Several groups engaged the councilman in conversation regarding the MTA lot for a “bridge housing” site. Part of the conversation was recorded but everyone was talking and questions and answers are not distinct.  Just a bad recording.

Westchester/Playa Neighborhood Council to Hold Special Meet Tuesday to Ask Bonin to Reverse Playa “Road Diet”

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Westchester/Playa Neighborhood Council will meet specifically Tuesday (15 August), 6:30 pm at the Westchester Municipal Building Community Room, 7166 Manchester Ave 90045, to discuss a letter written to Councilman Mike Bonin requesting him to reverse all roads on the “road diet.”

Work to revert Vista del Mar back to four lanes from present two will commence 21 August. Eastbound lane of Culver Blvd was changed back to four lanes in July.  A lawsuit was filed by KeepLAMoving last week to put all lanes back to where they were before the “Safe Streets” touted by Councilman Bonin started.

“Safe Streets” or Mobility 2035 is the brain child of Mayor Eric Garcetti.  This year he hired Seleta Reynolds of San Francisco to be program manager of Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) to implement the new street culture. Reynolds, 38,  spent the last three years leading teams in the “Livable Streets” division of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency.  She sees LA as “just a much bigger canvas and has so many wider streets.” 

The recent “road diets” on the west side of Los Angeles have left commuters waiting in lines of traffic to get home.  Needless to say, the commuters are mad and want their roads back.  It has been so unpopular that Recallbonin.com was started by Alexis Edelstein.

The six-page letter concludes with this summary statement:

There was no sudden need to close down lanes on Pershing and Culver. Indeed, as noted above, the City of Los Angeles identified that these streets are not the priority for attention. The irony is that some of the support for the Road Diet has been from those who want a vital thriving downtown Playa del Rey yet the changes made are having the immediate and opposite effect. The reversal of Vista del Mar lane closures addresses the concerns of the South Bay while leaving your own constituents adversely impacted. However, the cut-through traffic on residential streets because of lane reductions remains a significant and dangerous problem. There is an overwhelming groundswell of opposition to the PDR pilot project as expressed to the NCWP. There is simply no question that the majority of the local community does not like it as it stands and wants the lanes restored without delay.

We are confident that you and your staff will respond to our questions and requests and facilitate other City agencies in being timely and responsive. More urgently, we hope that the flexibility you have already shown will be extended to reversing course and improving the planning, evaluation (both pre- and post-intervention), and proactive and transparent communication regarding the PDR Safe Streets initiative. The NCWP and your constituents look forward to collaborating with you in an alternate improved and comprehensive means of addressing safety, efficiency and accessibility other than the current pilot project reduced lanes.