A plan to turn a small section of Griffith Park Boulevard in Silver Lake into a traffic-free zone for pedestrians and bikes is moving forward. Under a City Council motion introduced by Councilman Eric Garcetti, nearly two blocks of Griffith Park Boulevard between Sunset Boulevard and Edgecliff Drive will be off limits to most motor vehicle traffic to create additional a public space with seating areas. It’s part of a pilot project under Streets for People, which consists of a coalition of planning departments, public health agencies and other groups seeking to transform underused streets into public spaces.
Roughly the same section of Griffith Park Boulevard that runs north of Triangle Park is already closed a few hours a week for the Silver Lake Farmer’s Market. While concrete bollards will seal off westbound Griffith Park at Sunset, one, east-bound lane of Griffith Park would remain open as an access road, according to the rendering above presented to the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council.
The project, which has been championed by Silver Lake resident Anthony Crump, would transform the road into a pedestrian plaza with moveable tables and chairs, said Garcetti spokeswoman Julie Wong. The road would be closed for at least one year but that closure could be extended if the pilot project work out. “It just seemed like a good place to try this out,” Wong said.
Closing off Griffith Park Boulevard to traffic is the most recent Silver Lake project designed to make streets more pedestrian and bike friendly while reducing access to motor vehicles. A portion of Sunset Junction, for example, would be turned into a bus transit plaza and public gathering space while some Silver Lake residents want to put Rowena Avenue on a road diet and reduce traffic lanes.
It’s not certain when Griffith Park Boulevard will be closed off but the city has already accepted a $25,000 grant to help pay for the project.