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Downtown L.A. Is Going To Get Two Fully Protected Bike Lanes 🚴🚴🚴

chicagolane.jpg
A protected bike lane in Chicago. (Courtesy People For Bikes)
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About a year from now, if you so choose, you’ll be able to ride your bike all throughout downtown Los Angeles without worrying about traffic. By then, the city will have completed work on fully protected bike lanes on Spring and Main Street, according to KPCC.

The new lanes will run the length of downtown Los Angeles, from Cesar Chavez Boulevard all the way down to Olympic. Instead of riding with flowing traffic to the left and parked cars to the right, the new bike lanes will move curbside, protected from flowing traffic from a line of parked cars. Though the image above is from Chicago, it shouldn’t be too hard to imagine a similar set up in downtown L.A.

Both Spring and Main Streets already have large bike lanes striped on the pavement, though downtown’s noxious traffic means motorists frequently pilot their vehicles through the lanes to bypass traffic despite, you know, the law. Aside from impatient drivers, heavy bus traffic and parked delivery trucks often render the lane nothing more than a glorified double-parking arena.

This video from Streetsblog L.A. gives you a bit of an idea of what the lanes are like right now:

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Considering these are some of the most heavily used lanes in all of Los Angeles, councilman Jose Huizar’s office proposed a change as a part of his DTLA Forward initiative, dedicated to improving pedestrian and cycling infrastructure in Downtown.

Also on the list of improvements to infrastructure in downtown is the long delayed myFigueroa project, adding a fully protected “cycle track” to Figueroa between 7th street and Martin Luther King Boulevard. Originally supposed to open years ago, the project has been riddled with delays and challenges. Supposedly, construction will start this year followed by a 2017 opening.

Throw in an operational bike share, scheduled to open this summer, and 2017 will probably be the year downtown L.A. asserts itself as one of the most bike friendly neighborhoods in the whole city.