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City Seeks Feedback on L.A. Surface Street Transit

The project LA2b offers online survey for different L.A. regions to engage in developing transit enhancement policy over the next 25 years.

Attention truck drivers, motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians on the Westside: Los Angeles' planning and transportation departments want to know what city surface streets are your go-to for travel.

The departments' project LA2b seeks feedback in this online survey about transit upgrades to specific thoroughfares most needed over the next 25 years. The survey links to other LA2b transit-enhancement surveys for other L.A. regions, and is garnering feedback through March 30.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa introduces the project in this short video, also attached to this post.

"We did it because we find, as a city this large, it's really challenging to get in touch with 4 million people, especially spread out over 460 plus square miles," said City Planner Claire Bowen, who's spearheading the project and its outreach. "It asks how streets should be used in L.A. - what's working and what's not."

Bowin said they are also trying traditional methods of outreach to solicit feedback, and did four thinklabs across L.A. in the spring of 2012 in the San Fernando Valley and central L.A. About 700 people turned out in total of the four meetings. The online survey, powered by MindMixer, expands to not only more geographic diversity but also age structure, Bowin said.

"We were seeing a lot of common ground that people cared about," she said.

Given L.A.'s high rate of accidents, safety is the biggest trending concern from residents about traveling city street and planning their weekly commutes.

With all the transportation projects lining up to help residents not use their car, Bowin said it's likely in 25 years, Angelenos will still be getting around by making a drive.

"One day you drive and the next day you're taking the train or bus," she said, noting that some residents do not know where to find where to get on the bus, some fearful of riding in a certain bike lane and pedestrians concerned about walking in a bike lane.

"We talked to Metro about what streets make the most sense," Bowin added. "Which streets have lay problems, which streets have a dedicated lay for transit and improve transit reliability on those streets."

Bowin hypothesized one aggressive solution would be to allow dedicated transit lanes on certain streets, or a moderate approach of offering "preboarding payment platforms" to help move buses along faster.

"Wilshire [Boulevard's] an important corridor," she said. "Does it get a bus hour-only lane during peak hours?"

Other trending feedback received by LA2b so far are making main arteries more public places, including increasing bike connectivity and developing more "parkways" and "parklets." Discouraging cut-through streets to traffic and better maintaining streets and sidewalks were also discussed.

For more information on LA2b, visit its website.

Alan Latteri January 16, 2013 at 09:50 PM
right hand lanes of sunset and all of pico/cotner
John Sandeen January 17, 2013 at 10:17 PM
Right hand lanes on BOTH Wilshire and Santa Monica Blvds., and NOT just during "peak hours", but all the time.

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