Just six blocks from Eco-Village, Seventh Street is a route that a lot of us Eco-Village residents ride to get to downtown Los Angeles. Over the past weekend, the city began installing new bike lanes on 2.2 miles of Seventh Street. The initial phase of Seventh Street bike lanes will extend from Catalina to Figueroa. The city has currently finished the lanes 0.7 miles (Catalina to Rampart), with the remaining 1.5 miles (Rampart to Figueroa) to be completed within a couple weeks. An additional 2.8 miles, from Figueroa to Soto, have been approved but with no timeline for implementation.
Though a portion of these lanes downtown were approved as part of the city’s Downtown Street Standards, as recently as 2009 in an early draft of the L.A. City Bike Plan, the Seventh Street bike lanes were declared “unfeasible.” Due to pressure from the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition and other bike activists, the lanes were re-examined… and are now painted on the ground!
Bicyclists are definitely using the new lanes, though they’re not quite completed yet:
Unfortunately, a few cyclists were still riding on the sidewalks today:
Though it’s legal to ride on L.A. sidewalks (unless one endangers a pedestrian), faster moving cyclists are generally safer when riding in the street – as that avoids conflicts at driveways. And riding in the street leaves the sidewalks free for folks walking.
For more information on the Seventh Street bike lanes, read this article I posted earlier at the CicLAvia blog – and follow the links therein.