Sunday, October 23, 2016

Road diet planned for Fletcher Drive; shots fired in Highland Park; growing up amid the gangs of Boyle Heights

Boyle Heights | Daveed Kapoor

Boyle Heights | Daveed Kapoor

MOrning Report

  • A road diet and new bike lanes are planned for Fletcher Drive between San Fernando Road and Eagle Rock Boulevard in Glassell Park. Streetsblog
  • Northeast Division police received numerous calls reporting shots fired on Monte Vista Street in Highland Park at around 10:20 p.m. on Sunday. Officers searched the area and did not find the people responsible for the shooting or anybody injured, police said.
  • An L.A. Times writer describes what it was like growing up in Boyle Heights in the 1980s as gangs tightened their grip on the neighborhood. L.A. Times

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  1. The reminiscence by Hector Becerra in the LA Times is really good. Atypically for the LA Times, as of about 9am Monday, the comments are worth reading also. It will probably go downhill fast, because they have really uninformed, racist trolls in their comment threads.

    Editor: Incidentally, the link above does not actually point to the LAT article.

  2. Anyone who drives on Fletcher Drives knows this plan to eliminate traffic lanes is nothing but an effort to intentionally make the street bumper-to-bumper traffic. That street is already very heavily traveled, overloaded even in off-peak hours. To take a traffic lane out, rather than add one, will make it a pure horror — which of course is the intent.

    And to do this as they are planning to be closing off lanes on the Hyperion Bridge for constructions there, so traffic having to re-route to Fletcher, if downright criminal, unbelievably ill conceived! In fact, one of the arguments of the bike advocates for demanding lanes on the bridge be permanently taken out of use by cars involved that they could use Fletcher instead!

    This all revolves around overdevelopment,l not safety or that people want to ride bikes and get rid of their cars. This is designed to circumvent the CEQA requirement to consider the impact of overdevelopment on the surrounding ara, which means including traffic. They are basically seeking to redefine that, but pretending that people will be happy to have no car, so overde3veloonent is perfectly fine ad does not spark CEQA considerations.

    Not surprising that O’Farrell is pushing this, as nearly 100% of his unbelievably huge intake of campaign funds comes form developers and constructions unions and their related people such as architects and development lawyers.

    If everyone wanted the bike lanes, as we keep being told, there were actually be a lot of people using them. They are all over now and have been in for 15+ years. Anyone can see nearly no one uses them — because they don’t want to bike everywhere. Yet they keep trying to bludgeon people into the idea they want to ride a bike.

    There is nothing wrong with driving a car, especially now that polluting ones are being phased out with the advent of the fuel cell hydrogen cars that spew only steam and water, and electric cars. The idea that going forward cars are an environmental danger is obsolete and anachronistic.

    • I disagree. While it negatively affects my commute since I drive through here 5 days a week this is the least busy section in that area. Which means cars drive fast. And this area already has fairly dense housing which means there are quite a few pedestrians. Literally the other day I was driving and noticed a bicycle having to take that blind curve and was really concerned.

      Traffic is NEVER going to get better in LA unless the population drops off significantly. Making roads and adding lanes won’t make it better, or at least not much. What we do have to do is prepare for other modes of transportation. Maybe you won’t use it but the option needs to exist. I’ve ridden my bike and it’s terrifying because while there are sections of bike lanes, you have to use some stretches where there aren’t any. This makes the existing bike lanes in LA still hard to use. I have a strong suspicion you don’t know the people that actually live in those apartments. You know, people that can’t afford your exciting fuel cell hydrogen cars.

      You’re right. There’s nothing wrong with driving a car. Congrats, you can keep driving and nobody thinks your bad for it. You’re not a martyr. You may not realize it but that’s what you sound like.

    • Car owner outrage is the new white male outrage.

    • Pure Horror!

    • Incorrect on every front:

      – The intent is to make this a safer street. Currently, many many drivers speed through this school zone.
      – The daily vehicle volumes absolutely support a road diet. The city doesn’t implement road diets on streets with an ADT over 25,000. It is definitely not overloaded on off-peak hours. Do you get tired of making stuff up?
      – “They are all over now and have been in for 15+ years.” No and no.
      – “There is nothing wrong with driving a car.” Safety impacts; health impacts; environmental impacts.

      Bottom line: this is a safety project. This is a school zone (with two schools on it), and too many drivers speed through it. Those drivers are to blame for this.

      This has nothing to do with “no cars.”

  3. More bike lanes for NON EXISTENT cyclists. Talk about making stuff up. City seems to be intent on making it increasingly difficult for people to get to work and do productive things. Ease traffic at the bottlenecks and help folks during their morning/evening commutes. Pedestrians, use crosswalks, cross at signals and use common sense. Driver slow down. If the LAPD actually did traffic enforcement in NELA folks would stop speeding and obey stop signs. That would be a real improvement!

    • Actually, the city was intent on making it increasingly difficult for cyclists throughout most of the 20th century. Only recently have planners started considering cycling and walking as modes of transportation – this is LONG OVERDUE.

      For L.A. to remain economically viable in the future, it will need to get denser. Our housing prices and poor transit are already scaring away some businesses. Greater density and a cars-first approach are not compatible. Driverless cars might someday help the situation for a little while, but this is a big city, folks, and more roads and more cars are not the solution.

      • To piggyback on to your response: I agree with eastsidearts that more enforcement for speeding is needed (I recently saw someone fly around the bend on Fletcher, cross over the double yellow line AND kill a cat), but enforcement is not the solution. It’s a band aid. Enforcement mostly works AFTER someone has made a dangerous/illegal move. People make dangerous/illegal moves so frequently for a number of reasons, and engineering is the big one. Following the “passive safety” advocates of the ’60s (e.g. Ralph Nader) roads were increasingly designed to be as sparse as possible, so that when people inevitable crash they crash safely. Trees were removed, benches removed, roads widened, etc. But the result is that this just encouraged people to drive faster because every road resembles a freeway.

        So basically, enforcement doesn’t get to the root of the problem. Engineering got us into this, engineering can get us out.

        • I disagree. People would modify their behavior if they felt an increased likelihood of getting a traffic ticket. Imagine if expired meters were tickled only 10-15 percent of the time. People would most likely choose not to put $$ in much more of the time. Parking meters are successful because everyone feels they are likely to get a ticket. When we had red light cameras folks also responded by modifying behavior based on increased enforcement.

      • More cars may not be the solution, but making it more difficult for drivers to get around isn’t either. Los Angeles is simply too spread out for bikes to be a reliable means of transportation for most. Not to mention the topography. This isn’t Amsterdam, Stockholm or a dense city such as San Francisco. IMO bikes lanes are great, but they are used by recreational riders not commuters.

  4. I’m concerned about LA’s ability to thoughtfully apply road diets, but this is the reach of Fletcher north of San Fernando. This seems like an appropriate location. Hopefully they will pave the street so cyclists have an actual smooth surface to use.

    However – are they going to install left turn signals at San Fernando and Fletcher? This intersection is a mess because there is so much traffic, no one can move. Left turn arrows would help clear the left turn pockets.

  5. And having commuting bicyclists in the rush hours blowing threw the traffic light at the school at 25 mph is safe? I’m tired of seeing these lycra clad guys with large backpacks blowing through stop signs and lights. They don’t need lanes because they are already aggressive driving.

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