In coordination with City departments and civic and community organizations, DTLA Forward is an initiative launched by Councilmember Huizar to improve traffic flow, pedestrian and bicyclists’ access and safety, as well as increase green and public space in Downtown Los Angeles.
DTLA Forward uses a neighborhood connectivity approach to ensure that our city, community groups, business stakeholders, and strategic partners work together to create new and innovative strategies to achieve healthy and complete streets and improve DTLA’s living environment in a way that truly does move Downtown Los Angeles forward.
Recent DTLA Forward partnerships include: Pedestrian Headstart Crosswalks; Los Angeles Street Bike Traffic Signals; Spring Street Community Garden; Bikeshare LA; Pedestrian access during construction policy; MyFig; Little Tokyo Street and Sidewalk Improvements Protected Bike Lanes coming to Spring and Main St., and much more.
MAIN AND SPRING FORWARD
Project Limits: Spring Street from 1st Street to 9th Street; Main Street from Cesar Chavez Avenue to 9th Street
Project Intent: Improve intersections and crossings for people walking, upgrade the existing buffered bicycle lanes to protected bicycle lanes, reduce bus-bicycle conflicts, maximize parking/loading, and increase bus efficiency
In partnership with Councilmember Jose Huizar’s DTLA FORWARD Initiative, this Vision Zero project will better organize Main and Spring Streets to improve intersections and crossings for people walking, upgrade the existing buffered bicycle lanes to protected bicycle lanes, reduce bus-bicycle conflicts, maximize parking/loading, and increase bus efficiency.
The City has prioritized this project as part of its Vision Zero initiative. Portions of Main and Spring Streets fall along the Vision Zero High Injury Network, those streets in the city with higher numbers of severe and fatal traffic crashes affecting people walking and bicycling. From 2009-2013 in this project area, traffic crashes killed 2 people walking and 1 person driving, and severely injured 1 person walking, 3 bicycling, and 5 driving. Four of these crashes involved older adults and children.
Main and Spring Streets are also the heart of public life and vibrancy in Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA), connecting multiple neighborhoods. A more organized street will help all road users be more visible and predictable to one another, and allow buses and vehicles to travel more efficiently, improving the safety, comfort, and quality of the public realm.
People walking must cross long intersections while vehicles turn across their path. The bicycle lane is sometimes blocked with buses or vehicles and their doors. Parking and right turns are challenging.
Phase One has improved safety, comfort, and predictability for everyone, creating a healthier, more organized street. Upgrades include: crossing improvements for people walking; flexible, reflective posts; protected bicycle lanes; bicycle signals; dedicated left-turn pockets; and less conflicts for buses.
Phase Two will further enhance the street and provide more physical protection for people walking and bicycling. Proposed upgrades include: concrete islands at intersections; and concrete curbs for the length of the block.
Current construction timeline:
- Spring FWD phase 1 southbound bike facility was completed October 2018.
- Spring FWD phase 1, part 2 two-way bike facility implemented April 2019.
- Main FWD phase 1 construction is currently underway.
- Phase 2 construction for both Spring & Main FWD is estimated for 2020.
MyFig is the City’s most extensive Complete Streets project. The infrastructure improvements along Figueroa Street include the installation of protected and buffered bicycle lanes, new traffic signalization (including pedestrian head start signals), bus stop platforms, pedestrian and cyclist-oriented wayfinding signage, street trees and planting areas, high visibility continental crosswalks, transit furniture, public art, and sidewalk repairs.
ARTS DISTRICT ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENTS
Thanks to a lengthy application process spearheaded by Councilmember’s Huizar office with the support of the Arts District Business Improvement District, Bureau of Engineering and Metro, the Arts District has been recently awarded $15 million in Active Transportation Program (ATP) funding to build sidewalks, enhance intersections and install bike lanes and street lighting.
Councilmember Huizar added $150,000 in CD14 funds as a local match, which improves projects’ ability to secure ATP funding. The ATP funds are state allocated ($263.5 million statewide for 2017), with approximately $33.6 million going toward projects in Los Angeles County. The DTLA Arts District Pedestrian and Cyclist Safety Program was ranked first in the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) six-county region’s award list.
The adoption of this program will bring two signalized intersections, pedestrian lighting, four pedestrian crosswalks, and one mile of bike lanes, connecting the Little Tokyo/Arts District Regional Connector Station with the new Sixth Street Bridge, which will ultimately improve pedestrian and bicycle access in and around the Arts District, Downtown and Boyle Heights, as well as the future LA River bike path.
Scope highlights include:
- New signal at Santa Fe Ave. and Mateo St. intersection.
- Pedestrian Plaza at Merrick St. and 4th St.
- Controlled pedestrian crossing at 4th St./4th Place split.
- Bike lanes on Santa Fe Ave. and Mateo St. down to 7th St.
- Bike lanes on Traction Ave.
- Pedestrian walkway and plaza space on 6th St Bridge frontage road (between Mateo and Santa Fe on south side of bridge).
- New crosswalk on Santa Fe by the 6th St. Bridge to create safe passage to future Arts Plaza.
- Pedestrian lighting on Santa Fe, Mateo, 4th St. and Traction.
- Part of $100 million in additional funds Councilmember Huizar has helped to secure for the 6th Street Bridge, the park space and areas around the bridge.
LITTLE TOKYO ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENTS
Councilmember Huizar, Chris Komai, chair of the Little Tokyo Community Council, the Bureau of Engineering, the City’s Department of Transportation, the Bureau of Street Lighting and community members broke ground on $5.3 million in street improvements coming to Little Tokyo.
The improvements are part of Councilmember Huizar’s DTLA FORWARD initiative and include extending the pedestrian plaza by the Japanese American National Museum and connecting it to the Go For Broke Monument. Additional enhancements will close the slip lane at 2nd Street and Alameda Street for public art.
The scope of the project encircles Little Tokyo, from Alameda on the east, 3rd Street and San Pedro to 4th on the south, to Main Street and Judge John Aliso Street on the west, and First Street and Temple Street on the north.
Once completed, the project will bring 50 curb ramps, 56 pedestrian lights, 104 planted trees, continental crosswalks at six intersections, two new traffic signals and more than 22,000 square-feet of sidewalk repairs.
“Little Tokyo is a historic neighborhood, rich in tradition and Japanese culture,” said Councilmember Huizar. “For generations it has been one of the City of Los Angeles and DTLA’s premier destinations. These upgrades will vastly improve the pedestrian experience so that locals and visitors can continue to enjoy Little Tokyo, a true Los Angeles’ treasure.”
Funding for the improvements comes from about $3.1 million in Active Transportation Program funds and $2.2 million in Prop. C funds. The City’s Bureau of Engineering estimates the improvements will be completed by early 2020.
3RD & OMAR NEW CROSSWALK AND SIGNAL
Council District 14 worked closely with LADOT to get a new crosswalk and signal installed at the intersection of 3rd St. and Omar St. in Little Tokyo. The crosswalk was officially unveiled in March 2017 and will provide a much-needed pedestrian crossing for the elderly citizens of Little Tokyo. The Little Tokyo community has been asking for a new crosswalk at the intersection located directly in front of the senior apartments. With the help of the Little Tokyo community, Councilmember Huizar worked with LADOT to ensure that a traffic light was installed to maximize safety since many of the seniors cross the street for medical appointments and other daily trips.
LOS ANGELES STREET STREETSCAPE
Councilmember Huizar helped bring $1.77 million in streetscape improvement to Los Angeles Street in Downtown’s Fashion District.
The upgrades include 20,000 square-feet of sidewalk improvements, as well as pedestrian-friendly curb extensions, bus station lighting, high-visibility crosswalks, 26 new street trees and new ADA curb ramps. As a creative community feature and nod to the local area, the tree grates will be adorned with the Fashion District BID logo on them.
With funding from Metro’s 2007 Call for Projects, the upgrade is a key part of Councilmember Huizar’s DTLA Forward initiative. The plan and design was a collaboration among the Bureau of Street Services, the Board of Public Works, the Fashion District BID and Councilmember Huizar’s office with a project scope that encompasses Los Angeles Street, between 7th Street and Olympic Boulevard.
The project also increases pedestrian access to regionally significant bus stops and businesses and residences in the Fashion District, creating a direct link with the previously constructed Fashion District Streetscape Phase I improvements along Olympic Boulevard and Santee Alley, approved in 2001 Call for Projects, which provides similar pedestrian improvements within the Fashion District’s core area.
Project Scope – Los Angeles Street between 7th Street and Olympic Blvd
- Repair over 20,000 square feet of sidewalk along Los Angeles Street between 7th Street and Olympic Blvd
- Construct 2 curb extensions at existing mid-block crosswalks on Los Angeles Street between 7th and 8th, and 8th and 9th respectively
- Construct new ADA curb ramps and upgrade crosswalks to continental markings
- Install/upgrade pedestrian lighting at 6 bus stops (18 lights total) along the corridor
- Plant 26 new street trees (36” box) with tree grates with the Fashion District BID logo
LOS ANGELES STREET CYCLETRACK
The Los Angeles Street Cycletrack adds protected bike lanes between Alameda Street and 1st Street. It also created the first bicycle signals in the city, giving cyclists their own time to cross the intersections along the corridor. Councilmember Huizar assisted with the design to maximize access for El Pueblo and ensured that the street was resurfaced before the new lanes were put in.
The Broadway Streetscape is currently a semi-permanent phase one implementation of the road configuration called for in the full Broadway Streetscape Master Plan. The Dress Rehearsal draws precedent from other such projects across the country and in LA, including Times Square in New York City as implemented by the New York City Department of Transportation and Sunset Triangle Plaza in the Silver Lake area of Los Angeles.
The current implementation uses cost-efficient and quickly installed materials to create traffic-calming pedestrian enhancements and reconfigure the road to three traffic lanes while funding is secured to achieve the permanent build-out of the full-scale project on a block-by-block basis.
Phase one reconfigures Broadway from 4 traffic lanes to 3 traffic lanes between 2nd Street and 11th Street. LADOT will implement the Dress Rehearsal, using pavement treatments and physical indicators to delineate publicly accessible space within the roadway. These semi-permanent treatments leave flexibility to update configurations before the cost of a full construction build-out is undertaken if modifications are desired or necessary.
The phase one “Dress Rehearsal” treatment along Broadway:
- Reduces crosswalk widths for pedestrians
- Reconfigures the roadway for more efficient, predictable and streamlined vehicular travel
- Promotes calmer traffic and increased pedestrian activity
- Provides 24-hour curbside parking and loading to support Broadway businesses
- Creates an iconic destination for residents, visitors, and tourists
- Enhances pedestrian amenities – expands public realm for gathering and public activities
- Sets the stage for the future Downtown L.A. Streetcar
- Streamlines MTA bus service
- Bolsters economic vitality
The Broadway Streetscape Master Plan is one of L.A.’s first large-scale examples of a “Complete Streets” project. The plan will implement numerous pedestrian-oriented, traffic-calming tools for the historic Broadway corridor to provide greater pedestrian comfort and security along one of the city’s busiest pedestrian streets, and make Broadway a more enjoyable place to walk, shop, and spend time.
The Streetscape Plan / Broadway Road Diet will be achieved in two phases. Phase one is the “Dress Rehearsal,” which will use cost-efficient and quickly installed materials to create traffic-calming pedestrian enhancements and reconfigure the road to three traffic lanes while funding is secured to achieve the permanent build-out of the full-scale project on a block-by-block basis.
Aspects of the Broadway Streetscape Master Plan’s full-scale build out include:
- Widened sidewalks and curb extensions
- Reduced crosswalk widths
- Enhanced pedestrian crosswalk treatments
- Reconfiguration of the street to three lanes of traffic
- Curbside 24-hour parking
- Loading and valet areas to support Broadway merchants
- Transit stations
- Enhanced lighting
- Bike racks
- Wayfinding signage
- Trees and plantings
- Stormwater retention and recycling system