Thread started by Girl Power
at 06.16.11 - 4:13 pm
Imagine a car-free Los Angeles. Instead of sitting in a car in grid lock imagine traveling LA and the rest of Cali via bike lanes, quaint trolly cars, e-trains, under frwy subways.
Imagine taking a ski/bike lift up over Mulholland Drive.
Imagine spending an hour riding home at a leisurely pace in street clothes on safe streets and freeways surrounded by other bicyclists along beautifully landscaped, parks, rest stops, mini eateries, cafe's, and flower shops. People in Europe do it every day. Or for longer commutes relaxing on a comfortable and affordable e-train or subway for commuters.
I am talking about a (virtually) CAR-FREE LA. Read my letter to Sgt. Krumer on the Driver slams into group article. Notice how in the news report they omitted the testimony of an eye-witness who saw her see the riders and reve up her engine prior to hitting them. She was not on her cell, her bill will prove that. What else was se going to tell a group of furious cyclists? That she wanted to hit them? Of course she lied about being on the cell.
Thanks, Sgt. Krumer,
I will stay optimistic, but, I think cars are too dangerous to be used on the road by the general public. A person should not get a DL until age twenty-five becasue it takes a long time to become a good driver. I drove big rigs for Fed Ex for ten years I've seen fwys and roads from here to San Frisco, to Memphis to San Diego and non-class A drivers in cars are by FAR the worst drivers.
I studied social anthropology and this monolithic car infrastructure is the primary cause of civil disobedience, social deterioration and urban blight.
Instead of spending 55 million so that rich people in Westwood can take a direct rout via a new bridge over the Sepulveda to their multi million dolor Mc Mansions off Malholland Dr. is probably the most outrageous misuse of public funds I've ever witnessed. It makes Marie Antoinette's lavish purchase of a necklace seem like a child's toy.
We need to re-purpose our fwys.
1. Build subways underneath them to move people long distances faster and more safely.
2. Use the top of the freeways for bike lanes, electric trollys and location specific e-trains. Same with large streets like Ventura Blvd, Venice, Washington, Sunset, Santa Monica.
3. Install ski lifts for bicycles for passage over the Santa Monica Mountains at Highland, Sepulveda and Topanga Cyn. It's not rocket science or expensive - people have been using ski lifts to surmount Big Bear Mountain in the summer with mountain bikes.
3. Allocate ONE two-way lane for cars on streets and a freeways.
4. Use extra public land available on very wide freeways (405, 5 in LB, 170, 134 etc.) for small elongated rest areas, shops, parks, restrooms and other businesses.
This would create community, encourage motorists to use public transportation and bicycles, build revenue and put an end to urban blight.
A study conducted by an independent contractor concluded that in Colorado the GNP (Gross National Product) Tax that everyone pays into is where the car infrastructure costs come from, not the DMV, at the tune of an average of 3,000.00 per person per car on the road per year.
Bicycle infrastructure costs the GNP $28.00 per person, per bike, per year.
I'm tired of hearing bicycles being blamed for accidents and told to ride to the right when they are the ones footing the bill for cars to be on the road in the first place. DMV registration does not even begin to cover the coasts, those funds are mostly for the DMV itself and perhaps, in some counties, addition funds for the Highway Patrol. None of it makes it to road building and maintenance and the cost of lives to police who have the scary job of enforcing good driving and countless innocents killed by cars.
would be nice, but too many angelinos would be against it. great idea and would be a wonderful dream to actually have.
+1 for girl power!
06.17.11 - 12:33 am
I am with you on this!
I think it would be nice if at least bicyclists were the majority in LA.
06.17.11 - 10:31 am
You may be surprised, I feel that most Angeleno's would embrace it. It would be a huge enhancemant to the city. A tourist attraction in and of itself. There could be sustainably landscaped elongated miniparks. We could use extra space on the frwy to build petite single owner businesses (no franchisesed mega stores Starbucks, McDonalds, etc.)
And we could organize it like Disneyland, have commuters travel through picturesque (scaled down size) mini China, Tokyo, Mexico, Amsterdam, England, sections depending on where they were on the route. It could be very beautiful, for Mexico we could have tiny little adobe shops that look like mini adobe homes with appropriate landscaping and a rest area, etc, etc.
I think the trick is to get some great planners on board and simply "do it" using the "If you build it they will come." mentality. Meaning once it's in place most motorists will abandon their cars, overnight, for public transportation and bicycles.
The cars are a huge health issue too. Recent studies showed that babies who live with in three miles of a fwy, and who doesn't (?), are 80% more likly to be born with autism.
Never mind what that does to the rest of us. So it's a health issue too.
Big rigs could ride a track in the subway where they simply drive onto a large platform, get clamped on, and sit back and relax as an electric powered train takes them to their destination.
And we could put the single two-way car lane under ground with the subway as well, further encouraging people to use the re purposed frwy and fwy trolleys.
This would improve ever urban neighborhood that the fwy passed through, people would not feel anxious about escaping their urban blight for relaxation and entertainment, exercise, relaxing and entertainment would be part of their neighborhood and commuting experience.
responding to a comment
06.17.11 - 2:05 pm
I love the idea, but urban planning as it is practiced today is more about mediating and maintaining the status-quo, never to be truly visionary, and when there are visionary plans, they are never allowed off the drawing table by politicians.
Besides the momentum building already, I do think we are potentially on the cusp of some fundamental changes in the world economy and resource dynamics that will force some changes, and rapidly accelerate change, but not without great hardship as well.
One of the best explanations I have heard about the pending economic reset coming is on the Strong Towns Blog. Their Growth Ponzi Scheme series on how suburban auto-centric development patterns shows how they are inherently unable to finance their own infrastructure cost without A) building and selling more houses to boost tax base or B) taking on debt or bailouts from other level of government taking on debt, both of which are at their limits. No one wants more McMansions in nowhereseville, and our debt both public and private is ballooning, with private debt insanely out of proportion to GDP as people took on mortgages and ran up credit cards.
Just on suburban infrastructure cost maintenance alone we are screwed, let alone the rising cost of fuel.
In other words things will change because they will have to, no unsustainable system goes on forever. The sooner we adapt to necessary change the better, but don't count on any top down change coming to the rescue, leaders at the top will be busy rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.
The Growth Ponzi Scheme, Part 5 (finale)
06.17.11 - 8:35 pm
Seems like we're the only two CDL holders in this department.
I'm completely with you on this one.
responding to a comment
by Girl Power
06.18.11 - 12:30 am
I agree it will never happen. HOw do you think roads,bicycle trails and bicycle line ge tbuild by people in car. I wp=ould put alot of people out of work. That's just one view. Don;t get me started.
I ride to work everyday not because I have to be cause i want too. I enjoy the bike path next to the Orange rail. Car are how I make mt living. Car are needed,but can be used less would be nice.........
just a small point
06.20.11 - 9:06 pm
" HOw do you think roads,bicycle trails and bicycle line ge tbuild by people in car."
Great question! :o) The answer to your question is in my OP towards the end.
06.22.11 - 10:05 pm