O’Farrell Moves to Implement Mobility Improvements, Protected Bicycle Lanes on Major Corridors
Transformational multimodal safety upgrades proposed for Sunset Boulevard and Riverside Drive, more than four miles in total
LOS ANGELES — Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell today introduced two motions that aim to vastly improve safety and mobility on two major corridors in the 13th District (CD13), Sunset Boulevard and Riverside Drive, including the implementation of protected bicycle lanes and better connectivity to Elysian Park, a beloved, 600-acre regional park that is currently difficult to access via multimodal forms of transportation.
“Since taking office, I’ve worked to improve mobility and enhance safety for pedestrians and bicyclists in the 13th District and beyond,” said Councilmember O’Farrell. “I want to ensure all City departments are coordinating and prioritizing dignified multi-modal transportation safety improvements, including protected bicycle lanes, on Sunset Boulevard and Riverside Drive, and I am proud to support these concepts.”
O’Farrell’s first motion would direct City departments to coordinate on and recommend improvements related to the “Sunset4All” concept, which calls for protected bicycle lanes, enhanced shade structures, bus shelters, and additional improvements on a three-mile stretch of Sunset Boulevard and Santa Monica Boulevard through East Hollywood, Silver Lake, and Echo Park. Notable places in this area include the Santa Monica/Vermont Metro station, Sunset Junction, Micheltorena Street Elementary School, Edendale Library, and the popular Sunset Triangle Plaza, the City’s first “People Street,” a project completed in 2012 under the leadership of O’Farrell and in partnership with many area stakeholders. Since 2016, O’Farrell’s office has supported Sunset4All’s work to build community support for its vision of a safer, multimodal Sunset Boulevard, an effort that is supported by more than 1000 local stakeholders, as well as over 50 local businesses, schools, and non-profit organizations. Sunset Boulevard is located on the City’s High Injury Network.
“There is broad excitement within the local community for Sunset4All,” said Terence Heuston, former 13th District Bicycle Advisory Council appointee and board member, Sunset4All. “We are grateful to Councilmember O’Farrell for his partnership, and are proud of the support Sunset4All has received from stakeholders, including the business community.”
“Improvements such as protected bicycle lanes, safer pedestrian crossings and better transit have been shown to benefit local businesses,” said Natalie Freidberg, President, Silver Lake Chamber of Commerce. “We are very pleased that Councilmember O’Farrell is supporting Sunset4All.”
O’Farrell’s second motion would direct the installation of protected bicycle lanes on Riverside Drive, linking the existing bicycle lane northwest of Fletcher Drive and connecting directly to Elysian Park via Stadium Way. O’Farrell is also calling for the construction of a new, ADA-accessible sidewalk on Stadium Way, where no sidewalk currently exists, as well as the installation of a pedestrian-activated signalized crosswalk to allow pedestrians and cyclists a safe crossing from the Elysian Park Arboretum to the popular “City on the Hill” overlook at Angels Point.
“LACBC is thrilled about the bicycle infrastructure upgrades proposed for CD13. Our partners at Sunset4All have worked tirelessly to shine a light on Sunset Boulevard in Echo Park, Silver Lake, and East Hollywood as an essential corridor that needs to be made more accessible and safe for cyclists, pedestrians, and transit riders,” said Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman. “These upgrades, along with safety upgrades to the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the newly-proposed protected bike lane network to connect the Los Angeles River and Elysian Park, are important steps toward building a Los Angeles where families, commuters, and recreationists do not have to put themselves in harm’s way in order to embrace the many benefits of bicycling, walking, and using transit.”
Since 2013, O’Farrell has prioritized mobility and pedestrian safety and accessibility, working to improve more than 10 miles of sidewalks across the 13th District. O’Farrell has also installed various new improvements, including: three multimodal, non-vehicular bridges across the Los Angeles River; over 150 curb ramps; more than 30 Metro Bike Share stations; over 30 new traffic signals; and nearly 300 STOP signs. O’Farrell has also worked to install or upgrade nearly 600 crosswalks across the district.