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L.A.'s First Approved Bike Corral in Highland Park?

An unofficial bicycle corral outside Bike Oven on Figueroa | Photo by ubrayj02 via Flickr
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[Update: The corral pilot program was approved on Tuesday, April 27. Read about it here]

Portland has bike corrals, but will Los Angeles? Tomorrow the City Council will take up a motion by Jose Huizar asking for the city to implement a bike corral pilot program along York Boulevard between avenues 50 and 56 in Highland Park. "Without some accommodation, cyclists are often forced to compete with trees, pedestrians, outdoor diners and newspaper racks for sidewalk space," reasoned the councilmember in his motion. "Bike corrals are one solution that they give bikes a desiqnated place, acknowledge their importance and keep the sidewalks clear for safe walking."

By taking away one on-street parking space, corrals allow room for 12 to 14 bicycles. For safety reasons, other cities dot the space with reflective flexible poles. Huizar says the parking meter should be left so cyclists could donate money to a bicycle parking fund.

At a council transportation committee meeting last week, where the motion was recommended for approval, a city attorney said that municipal code already allows for bicycle racks in the public right of way. A Department of Transportation representative added that they support the project, but indicated that the fastest way to see a corral to reality is for a property owner to apply for a permit to install one.

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In addition to the York Boulevard corral, Huizar's motion asks the city to look into outside funding streams for bicycle parking and for the city to develop an "expeditious permit process" for private owners wishing to take a public parking space for a corral.