hyperion avenue between hyperion and tracy

The stretch of Hyperion between Tracy Street and Lyric Avenue offers no pedestrian crossings over its three tenths of a mile.

What might a safer, more welcoming Hyperion Avenue look like? That's the question a group of community members in Silver Lake and Los Feliz is looking to answer.

The Hyperion Street Safety Coalition is made up of local organizations, businesses, tenants, residents, schools, and students who want better access and safety on 1.5 miles of highway between Rowena Avenue and Sunset Boulevard.

On Saturday morning, about a dozen persons participated in a walkabout of Hyperion, looking at what ails the thoroughfare while discussing possible solutions.

Hyperion runs from its namesake bridge at Atwater Village south, dividing Los Feliz and Silver Lake. The road then splits, with most traffic continuing on Fountain Avenue to Sunset and beyond to East Hollywood.

What speed limit?

The posted 35 MPH speed limit is often ignored by drivers racing past local businesses, residential developments, including Gelson's and Trader Joe's, as well as Thomas Starr King Middle School.

The two lanes in each direction offer no reprieve for bikes, few crosswalks and fewer traffic lights. It's mainly inaccessible to the disabled.

"It's always struck me as a very unpleasant street," said Eric Brightwell, a Silver Lake Neighborhood Council member. "It's very loud. Cars move very fast. It's unsafe to bike on. It's like a car sewer. It's just terrible."

In January of 2019, Cristina Garcia, a 57-year-old mother of three, was hit and killed by a speeding Toyota Corolla that jumped a sidewalk in the 1800 block of Hyperion.

hyperion avenue sign

The drive to improve Hyperion originated with the Los Feliz Neighborhood Council's Transportation and Mobility Committee. But Siobhan Burke, a committee member and chair of the Hyperion Street Safety Coalition, saw the need to expand and involve others in the discussion. Hyperion runs through City Council Districts 4 and 13.

"We recognized that we needed to be an active community if we wanted to see positive change, and the active community needed to grow," Burke said.

Better Connections & Calmer Traffic

Ashle Fauvre works at Lehrer Architects on Hyperion. She has both biked and driven her 10-mile commute from her home in Alhambra and participated in the Saturday morning walkabout. Fauvre wants Hyperion to become a connection between people in the neighborhood while calming traffic.

"I'm very interested in seeing streetways and bikeways improved throughout the city, and this is a great chance to get involved in something that's very local to me," said Fauvre, who is originally from Ojai and has worked in Silver Lake since 2019

A second walkabout is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 11. For more information, visit www.losfeliznc.org or follow the council on Instagram.

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Robert Fulton is a freelance writer based in Silver Lake.

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