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“Road Diet” proposed to boost safety along Temple Street in Echo Park & Historic Filipinotown

ECHO PARK — Many savvy commuters know that Temple Street west of Downtown is a relatively speedy alternative to other congested east-west boulevards and the 101 Freeway. But traffic on Temple could be slowing down soon as the city officials propose reducing lanes for cars and trucks — a so-called “Road Diet” — and making more rooms for bikes to improve safety along an approximately 2-mile-long stretch of the street.

The proposal to reduce the number of vehicle lanes comes as the developers have targeted the Temple Street corridor for high-density residential development, which would likely mean that more cars and trucks — as well as pedestrians and cyclists– will be hitting the streets in the area. More than 2,000 housing units have recently been built or are in the works on or just off Temple between the 110 Freeway on the east and Beverly Boulevard on the west.

Temple Street Safety Improvement Meeting
Wednesday, July 12: 5 pm – 7 pm
Echo Park Recreation Center, 1632 Bellevue Ave.
Reducing traffic speeds by removing lanes for cars and trucks will help improve safety, transportation officials have said. Five people have been killed and nearly 30 have been severely injured on Temple Street between Beverly and Beaudry Avenue since 2009, according to the L.A. Department of Transportation.

A Wednesday night public meeting will review some of the traffic safety measures and changes being considered for Temple Street under the city’s Vision Zero  program to reduce traffic injuries and fatalities. The changes include:

  • Reduce vehicle lanes from one 2 to 1 in each direction
  • Add a center turn lane
  • Add bike lanes in each direction
  • Install  new speed feedback signs, crosswalks with flashing signals, protected left turns
  • Give pedestrians a head start over vehicles when traffic lights turn green

Last month, city agencies teamed up with other groups to host  Temple Street Slow Jams, which included several events to raise awareness of the safety problems along the street and potential solutions.

Screenshot 2015-12-10 at 3.10.51 PM

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56 comments

  1. These ideas sound great. Why doesn’t the city start with them before removing traffic lanes?

    Install new speed feedback signs, crosswalks with flashing signals, protected left turns.

    Give pedestrians a head start over vehicles when traffic lights turn green

    • Seriously, the city is making ridiculous decisions that only benefit a very very very small minority. If the city wants to entertain ridiculous ideas how about they require bicyclist to have a special licence to ride on city streets. In order to get the license THEY need to prove that THEY are capable of following basic safety rules that don’t put drivers in dangerous situations. Garcetti needs to get his head out of the sand and face the reality. This is Los Angeles not New York or San Francisco. If Garcetti is so interested in density and self transportation then why didnt he run for mayor of NY or SF where the culture and infrastructure supports it? Instead, he’s destroying the landscape and culture that shaped southern California chasing a dream that’s not meant for here.

      • Lol are you kidding? The “landscape and culture” of SoCal is trash, smog and cheap suburban sprawl. SF is a dream goal, if Garcetti can get us anywhere near the quality of life of SF we’ll all be way better off.

        • Why do you live here?

        • If Frisco (yeah, I said it – FRISCO) is the dream goal then we are screwed. You either don’t understand or don’t care that the population of L.A. includes a lot of elderly people, mother’s with kids and commuters who have no choice but to drive. It is unrealistic to think they will abandon their vehicles to bike or take inadequate public transportation to be good sports. That you and the yahoos running this town think they will is shortsighted and stupid. Furthermore, the very “landscape and culture” of SoCal is that of the automobile – be it lowriders, hotrods, or any other dream wheels – car culture is part and parcel of L.A. (not that you would have had a ride cool enough to roll with Klique). There are way more people who oppose “road diets” than support them, so I don’t know why we allow ourselves to get bullied into these schemes. A soon as I figure out who my councilman is, he’s getting an ear full.

          • You seriously don’t think there’s elderly people, mother’s with kids and commuters who have no choice but to drive in SF?

          • The part of LA I live in has already adapted most of these things, bike lanes and all, so it’s not really an issue for me. But most importantly I’m required to live in LA for a little thing called “my job” which you may be familiar is a thing people tend to have these days.

        • Exactly, why do you live here?

      • In a city full of alcoholics, you condemn the sober for closing liquor stores..

        As human being that walks and buses around this city, I see far far more infractions from motorists even in places like downtown and santa monica where numbers are more comparable.

        And the reason bikes dont require licenses, is because bikes don’t kill people. Meanwhile Los Angeles is on the rise for car related fatalities.

        Lastly, look at Los Angeles pre-car then post-car. The suburban sprawl begat by car dependency, killed any “landscape and culture” as it literally paved through neighborhoods.

  2. We in this community are NOT going to be lab rats for elites! We are blue collar folks who use and drive these streets every day. We are surrounded by other “slow down the traffic till they can’t stand it anymore” experiments like on Virgil and the added stop signs on hoover. We the community who live on the side streets between Bev and Temple are NOT going to have our quiet streets overrun by wazers who’ve lost their minds (rightfully) due to lines of traffic that go as far as the eye can see. Add crosswalks, trees and make the sidewalks more walkable YES. If i were to try and do my grocery shopping on foot or bike it would be impossible even if they banned a cars altogether. If you look at a map this area east of Hoover is the old spanish layout and this would trap us in a noose. These elitist experiments need to STOP NOW!

    • wtf_is_a_hispter_anymore

      Um… what does this have to do with elitism at all?

    • Actually that’s happening everywhere these diets occur. It’s madness that has nothing to do with class.

    • Most pedestrians on Temple are about a million miles from being elite… makes me wonder if you even live in the neighborhood.

    • You are correct, this benefits developers as its been proven to raise housing prices around high density areas. Also in their own whitepapers their stated goal is to get people out of their cars and eventually restrict private car ownership, you cant get anymore control freak than that. Apple, Tesla, Uber etc are all moving toward driverless robot cars. Look up Agenda 21 and road diet, you’ll find a lot.

      • Link to these whitepapers. “You’ll find a lot” – like what? Seems like it’s much easier to make vague fear-mongering statements than point to actual evidence. I don’t even care what’s in Agenda 21 – but I know that NAME ALONE is scary!! eeeeh.

        Plus, if you’re worried about social engineering and policies restricting private car ownership, shouldn’t you be equally worried about social engineering and policies that encouraged sprawl and debt for the benefit of… developers?

    • hmm who’s more likely to be an elitist, someone who drives or someone who walks and bikes??

      Seems like you’re barking up the wrong tree pal.

    • Yes, the people who actually live in the community need to continue to voice their opinions. The city council is in place to serve the community so they need to start acting like it! The community does NOT want road diets!

  3. “Five people have been killed and nearly 30 have been severely injured on Temple Street between Beverly and Beaudry Avenue, according to the L.A. Department of Transportation.”

    Over what period of time. One year would be concerning, 20 years not so much.

  4. There isn’t any traffic issue to fix on Temple, they just make up fake excuses.

    They want to slow traffic — why? Why not just post a lower speed limit? Well, the reason is because under state law, they are not allowed to post a speed limit less than that determined under scientific standards to be safe. The speed limit on Temple is already posted at as low as it can go, that speed, and possibly even faster, is safe.

    But there is no law about manufacturing traffic jams to bring traffic to a crawl, so they are doing that. So, why do they want to do that? Well, it has to do with catering to the big-money campaign and other contributors, the developers, the construction unions, and all the other people associated with that. You see, there are state requirements about parking for developments, as well as the city requirements. They want to eliminate the space set aside for parking and let the developers build even more crap on that too, providing less or no parking. So, they say everyone wants to ride a bike, and we’re building a train system too — of course, the trains won’t be built for a number of decades to come, and will be obsolete before they are even built as we are building the wrong system, a light rail system instead of a heavy rail system that can actually handle the loads of people they way they will have to handle — but so what, there are campaign contributions and other even better money to be had right now if we let them build more by not having to provide parking.

    Think, they are planning how much development along that corridor, so any realistic and honest person knows it means lots more traffic. By doing that, and coupled with this fake argument about everyone riding a bicycle and a train that doesn’t even exist for decades to come, they can set up a smoke screen to get around the state laws requiring they be responsible about development. These fake arguments, lies, are the legal justification for that.

    So, they eliminate the traffic lanes, that will solve everything. Because everyone wants to ride a bicycle, just look at the hordes and hordes of people using all the bicycle lanes they have put in all over in the the past two decades, they are having traffic jams in the bicycle lanes there are so many of them; nobody wants to have a car. Oh, wait, the people telling us this, such as Mayor Garcetti, who lives a short walk about from the Red Line to City Hall, never rides any sot of transit or a bicycle, he goes by car — transit is for the little people, to get them out of the damn way of the wealthy, kind of like what Leona Helmsley said about taxes.

    Can you see a catastrophe in the future of this city, because of this crop of corrupt politician taking money hand over fist from all the developers in this city for every size project — really? Just look at the campaign contribution reports. This has only been going on, and put on steroids by Garcetti, since this new crop of politicians came into office at the turn of the century.

    • Hilarious tin foil hat conspiracy loons truly have nothing better to do then come up with these fantasy plots? Every major city in the world has all the things you claim to hate and are better off for it. They’re just trying to bring LA up to the modern standard we’ve been embarrassingly lagging behind. If you want to live in a third world hell-hole that’s fine, just stay out of the way of progress.

      • LA is not Amsterdam, Stockholm, Paris, etc. we need solutions for our city……..

        • “eastsidearts” has the time to post 300 comments every time someone says the word “road diet” like a strange jobless version of “beetlejuice”. Say the word “road diet” and he shall appear! There are so many hit and runs in LA where they never catch the driver, maybe they should look over his record. He sure does like defending cars rights an awful lot over humans

      • I really don’t understand your rational for living in Los Angeles. You seem like you would be much happier somewhere else. You really should consider moving.

    • This is happening worldwide, its a UN sustainability plan signed in 1992. Look up Agenda 21 and road diet.

    • “So, they say everyone wants to ride a bike.” No, no one is saying that. You’re making stuff up. You just spent a bunch of paragraphs arguing against this thing you made up. And you seem to have little awareness of the many functions of streets (hint: the efficient movement of vehicles is not even close to the only function of a street).

      “speed limit less than that determined under scientific standards to be safe.” That’s not true, either. Speed limits are set/adjusted via the 85th percentile, with little regard for safety. The speed limit is often determined by how fast most people drive.

      If there “isn’t a traffic issue” on Temple, then this road diet should be no big deal. If there’s no traffic issue, then that means the road is over-engineered, with more capacity than it needs.

      If you desire no traffic during rush hour, you’re living in the wrong city. Try moving to a place with no economy. The roads will be open and free there.

  5. If only there were a high capacity route that paralleled Temple for commuting motorists to use instead… free from pedestrians, pesky cyclists, and traffic signals every other block. A “freeway” if you will.

    • Not everyone needs to get on a freeway to arrive at their destination. The idea that all roads need to accommodate all forms of transportation is a delusion. Major arteries should not try to accommodate all forms any more than freeways do. Route cyclists thru other streets where there def will not need to obey traffic laws. Perfect!

      • Take a look on google for pictures of Barcelona. A city with much less money and resources then LA that has completely perfected public transit. Deaths are down, happiness is up, and every road has spots for cars, trains, bikes, and pedestrians. And before you start screaming about how LA is awful and needs to stay that way for some reason, remember that the next generation of people moving into LA are highly motivated to make this city a better place.

        • Barcelona is literally a retarded comparison. Barcelona covers 39 square miles while the city of Los Angeles alone covers 503 square miles. The county of Los Angeles as a whole covers over 4,700 square miles so i’m not sure how one could try and compare the two? Also, You bring up a good point about the “next generation of people moving into LA”. Maybe they should make it a point to understand Los Angeles first instead of trying to impose their way of life at any and all costs.

          • Nice use of the “r” word, bud, you one of the Trump snowflakes I keep hearing about? Yes Barcelona is way smaller, but it’s also thousands of years old and was ruled by like 10 different countries. They manged to sort their problems out just fine, but then again they don’t have the aging fat american baby boomer population to contend with, desperately clinging to cars because clearly the current system of every day murders and deaths in LA has clearly worked SO WELL. Let’s be honest, this anti change movement is being led by Conservative boomers, old people, and probably trumpsters too. It’s painfully obvious. Many of the conspiracy theories posted on this thread alone are core theories from alt-right politics.

    • Bravo comment corner soul.

  6. Weird how people want dangerously fast traffic and no bicycles, as if that is part of LA’s cultural heritage, to pollute and be inhospitable. Saying things like “this isn’t amsterdam.” so just throw your garbage out the windows, cuz this ain’t amsterdam? More seriously, many kids and grandmas, poor people, are crossing Temple at the schools, library, etc. And yet, I cannot imagine there are more fatalities on that stretch of Temple than there are on that stretch of Sunset. Sunset and Alvarado? How many fatalities? Anyone know? They seem to happen all the time. Can we have a road diet on Sunset, first? Please? There are parts where cars go 70 mph and I’m sick of it actually. If the real issue is safety, and not a plan devisded by developers, why not work on Sunset first? More cars there, much higher volume of traffic, more stores, more density, way way way more pedestrians. And bicyclists.

  7. The pedestrian death stats for LA are a ruse. 50 a year in a city of over 14 million isn’t even a blip of a blip. And dig deeper. half of them were probably intoxicated. This is all about making life miserable for drivers so they stop driving.

  8. Why do car people get so butt hurt all the time? Maybe you guys should get out of your cars and enjoy life a little instead of complaining all the time?

  9. I live off of Temple in Echo Park and I drive most of the time. I definitely get steered onto Temple when heading home when it’s super trafficky and I’ll be the first to admit that I drive pretty dangerously on that stretch. I support this measure. The density coupled with the hills and curves haven’t been a good combination in the past, as there have been several hit-and-runs over the past few years. And if you even want to bother with biking on this stretch, you have to have a death wish.

    When driving gets unmanageable and parking gets difficult to find or really expensive, it definitely does impact my choices and I do opt to not drive. I have a feeling that the people complaining most about this road diet only commute through the area to or from downtown or Hollywood. The lot of you are lucky you have a goddamned subway and multiple train lines that head to both places, so why don’t you think outside of the box for a change and take advantage of that?

  10. The funniest thing about all this is LA had a great public transit system that was destroyed by the car companies using their monopolies to buy their way into city influence. They literally tore up train tracks on sunset blvd to make way for more roads. They tore of trains tracks all around LA. They paved over Victorian homes in Angelino Heights to build freeways. While every major city developed public transit infrastructure, LA built more roads. And now we have the worst traffic of any city in the world to show for it and the lemmings keep barking for even MORE roads? Will they never learn? The car corporations brainwashed the citizens of LA many years ago and we can only hope the new generation can carry LA away from that brainwashing.

    • If the sole argument for the road diets is safety, id be interested to know the stats on deaths caused by public transportation. It seems like at least once a month the news is reporting a pedestrian that was fatally struck by the metrolink, amtrak, etc. If we are gonna be fair and rational here, we should also be implementing track diets cause they sure are dangerous.

      • Streets and cars are directly next to pedestrians. Metro tracks are underground or elevated behind fencing and are almost never close to where people walk. I feel like you’re just trolling me at this point because no one can be this dumb.

    • The really funny thing is how so many people buy into the myth the car and oil companies destroyed the LA public rail transit system. The users (or lack of them…) killed it. Over the years I have personally had numerous conversations with old timers who used it. People hated it and couldn’t wait to get a car and stop using it. By the late 30s many lines already had such low ridership they were becoming poorly maintained and beginning to be abandoned. Fact is, If WW2 hadn’t happened the system would have been declared dead a decade earlier.

      • Bob, its my understanding that Firestone and the tire industry and GM had a lot to do to move to towards more road improvements in the LA area. The early Red Car trolley lines were primarily developed for real-estate sales in areas outside metro LA like Pasadena and these lines later became public transportation trolley lines. Once outlying areas started to become populated (due to real-estate development assisted by trolley lines) and the rise of individual cars became popular, there were conflicts with on grade conflicts with trolley lines and road traffic, and some deadly collisions. I am sure you can understand the interest in the auto industry to have LA become a motor city, our climate was so well suited for early automobiles which were not very weatherized. There was a bond issue for voters to provide funds to create grade separation between autos and trolleys. That bond issue failed and it was the a big moment in the demise in public transportation in the LA area. I ve never read that the system lacked riders, but that could be true as more affuence was developed in LA and more people were able to buy autos.

        As far as “road diet” is concerned, I think there are many ways to slow traffic and create a better urban environment on the street for all those who use the street. I dont think reducing lanes is the only solution. I think this is a fad for transpiration engineers and it too will come to pass. LA is not like most cities , its unique in its size and its history of development. I have experienced the “bike lobby” and they are a political force in our local politics. LA will never be Amsterdam, but I agree it could be more urban and with beautiful streets. Just my thoughts.

  11. We need more road diets. It’s the only way to break the car culture.

    • Good luck with that. The car culture will never be broken in L.A. – too many cars, too many people and too many people with cars who will act politically if they have to endure continued traffic nightmares due to road diets. They will organize and heads will roll. The majority of people do not share this future without cars that you envision. The idiots running this city will realize it soon enough.

      • I imagine 100 years ago when LA was first built they said “nothing will ever replace the horse and buggy! These confangled horseless carriages are witchcraft!” and now look at what happened lol. The nice thing about the future, is it arrives whether people want it or not.

  12. I’m all for road diet, but there is a way to make both sides happy. Get rid of street parking, widen the sidewalk and make raised bike lanes on the sidewalk. All the chicken littles will start crowing about parking now, but both sides consistently point to the usability of roads for the majority of users. 20 or so cars parked for hours at a time mean just a few people are using an entire lane for car storage for a big chunk of the day. How is that making a street fair and usable?
    Developers would never go for this because then their schemes involving less parking in their buildings wouldn’t fly. But if you buy or rent in a building with no parking, those units are cheaper, so it’s up to you to find/pay for parking, not up to the city of L.A. to subsidize it for you.
    Bike lanes on sidewalks would force cyclists to ride at safer speeds too.

  13. I have lived on Temple St for 25 years. My first question is why was this not posted until after the meeting. I suppose those in favor did receive such notice.

    The problems on Temple St and nearby areas have to do with excessive development, apps that divert traffic to Temple from other roadways and probably things like AirBNB rentals which increase traffic and make it extremely difficult to park. I lost my original off street parking (first 12 years) when my landlord, illegally broke the terms of my lease.

    I am 1000 percent opposed to any road diet on Temple!!!!!

    I think the real purpose oF all this is to make life so miserable here that everyone who is not in the top 10 percent and can afford to pend lavishly will be forced to leave LA!

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