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Broadway Will Be Losing A Lane Soon

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Broadway has always been a busy street for pedestrians, at least by day. But the city plans to make it even more of a haven for walkers by slowing down traffic, widening the sidewalks and narrowing the streets.

Some of the changes are small but welcome: planting more trees, improving the lighting and adding more bike racks. Some of the plans are bigger: eventually, the downtown streetcar is supposed to run through it—once we figure out how much such a project might cost and then figure out who will pay for it.

The street has already been undergoing some big changes. Earlier this month, the trendy Ace Hotel opened its doors at an old United Artists theater, and last month an Urban Outfitters opened up shop in a repurposed Rialto Theater.

But we're going to start seeing some more immediate changes to the street soon. The Bringing Back Broadway page has laid out plans for the street's "Dress Rehearsal." The idea is that the city is going to implement a bunch of semi-permanent changes while it awaits full funding and puts the final touches on plans for more permanent changes.

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One of the most dramatic differences will be removing one traffic lane. The four-lane street will become a three-lane street between 2nd and 11th streets. The crosswalks will become wider and there will be 24-hour curbside parking. The city has plans to streamline bus service and make sure the street is "more efficient, predictable and streamlined" for cars.

There's no exact start date, but let us know if you see changes afoot in your hood, downtowners. (And hopefully, once the city has spent all this time and energy bringing the crowds to Broadway, they will tell the LAPD will chill out and stop ticketing so-called jaywalkers!)

Broadway isn't the only street that will seeing more traffic-calming, pedestrian-friendly changes soon. The city just announced a new initiative called People St. The city plans to transform places meant for cars into an oasis for pedestrians. That means we'll be seeing more places like Silver Lake's Polka Dot Plaza and downtown's parklets.