One of the reasons I decided to run for Wilshire Center Koreatown Neighborhood Council was because of how unsafe the streets are in this neighborhood, particularly for pedestrians and cyclists. I want to do everything I can to get infrastructure improvements like scramble cross walks, bike lanes, and removal of slip lanes.
I’ve been creating Facebook Live videos throughout my campaign where I discuss the specific changes I will make to our streets. Here is a compilation of all those videos, along with a brief description of the changes I want to make.
Scramble Crosswalk at Wilshire & Vermont
This proposed infrastructure improvement has by far received the most community support. This redesign would allow pedestrians to cross to all corners, even diagonally, by stopping vehicle traffic in all directions. This intersection would be the perfect candidate for a scramble due to its high level of traffic from both vehicles and pedestrians. Several bus and rail lines stop at this intersection.
Connected & Protected Bike Lanes
Bike lanes face strong community opposition, but they are desperately needed. The safety they provide to cyclists, scooter riders, and skateboarders strongly outweigh the minimal impact they have on vehicle congestion. Koreatown lacks a network of bike lanes that are connected, the the few we have don’t have protected barriers to protect cyclists from rogue cars. The first street I think should get a bike lane is Western Ave. The wide street, flat terrain, and bustling business corridor would make Western the perfect candidate for a road diet. In the first video, I discuss the need for bike lanes in general. In the second video, I give my support to Western Avenue.
Left Turn Arrow onto Alexandria Ave from Wilshire Blvd, Facing East
It’s not at one of the more major crossings on Wilshire, but this intersection is a hidden hotbed for accidents. It’s heavy with pedestrians from Robert F Kennedy High School and folks grabbing a bite at one of the restaurants at Brown Derby Plaza or Alexandria Plaza. The line to turn onto Alexandria backs up, and impatient drivers are quick to make their move. It can be a rather harrowing experience for pedestrians. A left turn arrow from Wilshire to Alexandria would ensure cars can make their turn without resorting to dangerous maneuvers.
Slip Lane Removal at Wilshire & Commonwealth
Drivers are given a slip lane for making right turns from Wilshire onto Commonwealth without reducing their speed. This creates a dangerous intersection for pedestrians as they cross on Commonwealth to or from the skate park that’s on the corner. This lane needs to be removed for the safety of pedestrians in the cross walk.
Stoplight at Mariposa & 3rd
This busy intersection is about to get even more slammed with traffic. This block in Little Bangladesh is one of the densest populated blocks in Los Angeles. A large development slated to open this fall is going to inject hundreds off new cars onto the streets of this block. Many drivers use 3rd street as a regular east-west corridor, and crossing it on Mariposa is nearly impossible. That doesn’t stop people from trying. I’ve witnessed first hand several accidents from vehicles trying to cross this intersection. A stoplight which is timed with the lights at Normandie and Alexandria would go great lengths to keep 3rd street safe.
Speed Humps on Oxford Ave.
In just the last few weeks, pedestrians have been struck on Oxford near 8th and 5th streets. Drivers take Oxford to avoid the traffic lights of Western Ave., but won’t drive down it like it’s a residential side street. Cars frequently speed and run stop signs. On May 1st, the City of LA will open requests to have speed humps added on certain streets. I will be applying for them to be added on Oxford.
If you’re a stakeholder of Wilshire Center Koreatown Neighborhood Council, please vote on April 4th! Elections are 2-8pm at Seoul International Park.