Read LACBC’s LA Bike Plan Comments to CityNovember 10, 2009 at 3:43 pm | Posted in Bike News, Get Involved | 5 Comments
Tags: LA Bike Plan
LACBC submitted their official letter and comments to the City on Friday Nov.6. Here is the letter and list of comments.
We would like to convey our appreciation to you and the Bike Plan update team for all of the work that has gone into bringing the document to this stage. We are pleased that the plan proposes numerous new and innovative policies to improve the cycling environment. Nonetheless, the new Bike Plan needs to do much more too effectively guide the creation of a pervasive bikeway network with a better mix of bike facilities to meet the needs of all types of cyclists. The 2009 Plan must provide significant improvements compared to the 1996 Plan to justify its adoption. Below are our recommendations.
1 – Set goals and monitor progress
One of the primary flaws of the previous Bike Plan was the lack of targets to motivate implementation. It is crucial that our new plan include goals and a process for evaluating the progress on fulfilling them.
City Council should approve annual or biannual bikeway mileage goals and Planning/LADOT should report progress on these goals to the BAC and Transportation Committee.
Specific goals should be set for all categories of bikeways (bike paths, bike lanes, Bicycle Friendly Streets, bike routes).
Annual mileage goals should also be set for implementing Potential Bike Lane Projects.
2 – Implementation
Strategies the Plan should incorporate to accelerate implementation of Potential Bike Lane Projects:
• Review a specified amount of roads listed as Potential Bike Lane Projects within a given time period to identify projects for priority implementation.
• Examine road capacity and streets standards for projects identified. If ADT is lower than capacity, downgrade the road standard to allow implementation of bike lanes.
• If the ADT is at capacity, determine if the level of service can be downgraded (expectations for LOS should be lower for streets listed for Potential Bike Lane Projects).
• On streets where on-street parking might be needed to free up space for bike lanes, perform a parking survey to assess if there is sufficient off-street parking or the ability to reduce the amount of on-street parking to provide room for bike lanes. (Note that the Cornfields and Arroyo Seco Specific Plan provides examples of how street standards can be modified.)
Numerous streets listed in the Potential Bike Lane Project category should instead be listed in the Proposed Bike Lanes category. See attached list.
Develop a list of specific pilot projects for Non-Standard treatments described in Chapter 5.10 and provide a schedule in order to follow through with implementation.
Whenever roads are scheduled for repaving and restriping, integrate bikeways whenever possible, regardless of whether they are listed in the planned bikeway network.
Adopt a new method of measuring level of service that considers the flow of pedestrians, cyclists and transit in addition to automobiles. We need to recalibrate our priorities so that LOS measures oriented predominantly for automobiles do not skew the ability to implement bikeways.
3 – Prioritization
The weighting of criteria in the Prioritization List needs to be rebalanced and take into account local retail destinations and level of bicycle usage as factors.
Final prioritization should be reviewed by local Council offices, Neighborhood Councils and the BAC.
The Plan should include the methodology, criteria and weighting used in the Prioritization List.
4 – Special Study Areas
The Draft Plan does not propose adequate bikeway networks for some of the densest districts and areas of high demand. The Plan should designate Special Study Areas to improve bicycle access to and mobility within:
– USC vicinity
– UCLA vicinity
– Other college and university adjacent districts as needed
5 – Process
When updating documents, old versions should remain available online.
Any changes should be included in an errata list, available online, with revisions dated.
6 – Policy
Policy 8.1.4 – “Conduct bicycle counts along corridors in the Bicycle Plan before and after the implementation of bicycle improvements.”
If bike counts are not available for a corridor, this policy should not preclude the timely implementation of planned bikeways.
Policy 2.5 – Add language to assure that planned bikeways are not preempted by road projects. A public hearing should be required before any planned bikeway is precluded by a road project (such as peak hour lanes).
LADOT should hire or assign a Bikeways Coordinator for each of the 5 LADOT planning districts in the city.
The Bicycle Plan Implementation Team’s meetings should be open to the public and their documents, including lists of planned roadway projects and pavement maintenance schedules should be available online. The BPIT should include representatives from BAC, Bureau of Street Services and other relevant city departments.
Planning Department and/or LADOT should provide BAC and the Transportation Committee with a list of streets they are reviewing in Community Plan Updates.
7 – Mountain Biking
Parks in the City of Los Angeles should include opportunities for mountain bicyclists; mountain bikes should not be excluded from all dirt roads and trails in the city.
Trail access for mountain bikes, in areas where appropriate, opens up transportation corridors as well as recreational opportunism that are desirable alternatives to urban road riding for some cyclists. Expanding mountain bike opportunities and access to off-road trails are necessary and appropriate Bike Plan elements for any city with parks/open space that truly aims to become bike-friendly.
The 2009 plan should incorporate the 1996 Bicycle Plan language that called for pilot projects and a gradual increase in mountain bike opportunities in the parks.
Thank you for your consideration of these recommendations in the next revised draft.