My Bicycle Route: NoHo to UCLA

My bicycle route is mainly on neighborhood streets, providing a lower-stress and more pleasant experience.

Jose Tchopourian, LADOT Bike Program.

The Los Angeles region is vast and challenging to navigate by any transportation mode. Some residents, like myself, find it more enjoyable and oftentimes faster to commute using a bicycle alone or in combination with public transit.

Before guiding you through my “hybrid commute”, which combines bicycling and transit, I would like to point you to some helpful resources for making trips by bicycle: bike maps and infrastructure, transit maps and timetables, bike rules of the road, and fun bike rides and education.

Since September, I have been commuting from my home in the NoHo Arts District to class at UCLA’s Urban Planning Department. My trip combines a bike and Metro’s underground Red Line subway. The total commute is 14 miles long and takes about 1 hour door to door.

I start my trip on the Metro Red Line at the North Hollywood station in the direction of Union Station. I ride the train two stops, departing at the Hollywood/Highland station. The train ride takes about 9 minutes. If you are riding Metro Rail with your bike, keep the following in mind: 1) use elevators or stairs to enter and exit stations 2) if the train is full, wait for the next one 3) give priority to passengers in wheelchairs, and 4) stand with your bike in the designated area for bikes, which are clearly identified with a yellow decal adjacent to the car doors.

Holding my bike while riding the Red Line Subway into Hollywood.

Holding my bike while riding the Red Line Subway into Hollywood.

The second part of my commute, an 8-mile bicycle ride, takes about 45 minutes and allows me to experience the sights and sounds of multiple neighborhoods.It is important to follow the rules of the road while operating a bicycle. Obey all traffic signals and stop signs, yield to pedestrians, and use lights to be visible at night. I find that riding predictably and communicating with other road users makes my ride safer.

The route I have selected avoids steep mountainous terrain. Instead, I experience slight inclines during my trip. In addition to elevation, I also consider the type of streets I will be using to get to my destination. Eight years of using a bicycle for moving through Los Angeles have taught me that safety comes first. Even if riding on arterial streets might bring me to my destination a few minutes earlier, I prefer to trade time saving for the lower-stress experience of riding on residential and neighborhood streets. When I do ride on arterial streets, I pick those that have bike facilities on them.

Here is my route. If you see me on the road, say hello!

If you would like to share your favorite route, send it to bike.program@lacity.org.

San Fernando Road Bike Path: Phase 2 Now Open!

Councilmember Felipe Fuentes leads the way

A new stretch of bike path on San Fernando Road is here! Last Thursday morning, Councilmember Felipe Fuentes of the Seventh District, City agencies, and community partners announced the installation of a new bike path on San Fernando Road from Branford Street to Wolfskill Street, opening the bike path for its inaugural ride.

LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds joined representatives from Metrolink, Metro and LAPD, along with local families and friends to check out the new installation.  Reynolds says, “This section of the San Fernando Road bike path increases opportunities for people to unplug and spend time with friends and family.  LADOT looks forward to working with our partners, city leaders, and the community to connect this system to the City of Burbank in the near future. ”

Councilmember Fuentes cuts ribbon with LADOT GM Seleta Reynolds.

This 2.75-mile segment of the path connects Angelenos to the existing San Fernando Bike Path. This addition is the second phase of the planned bike path that sits adjacent to San Fernando Road. Phase 1, completed in 2011, included 1.75 miles of bike lanes on San Fernando Road from Hubbard Street to Roxford Street.

LADOT Engineer Tina Backstrom says that the bike path is a challenging design, as it involves a lot of coordination and partnership with agencies like Metrolink and Metro.  The long-awaited Phase 2 improvements include lighting, striping, traffic signs, and landscaping. Metrolink also enhanced the safety of the Bike Path project by making railroad and traffic signal improvements. Specifically, the bike path design has taken the opportunity to upgrade all the pedestrian crossings that intersect with the railroad.  Backstrom says, “We’re looking at safety for everyone,” with the new path making things safer for people on bikes, walking, driving, or riding the train. Read more

The Bike Blog visits Brown’s Creek Bicycle Path

The LADOT Bike Blog visited the Valley yesterday to give you a first-hand look at the freshly refurbished Brown’s Creek Bicycle Path. The 1.6 mile path picks up where the Orange Line Bicycle Path terminates at the Chatsworth Metrolink Station, off of Lassen St. From there, the path travels north along Brown’s Canyon Wash, through quiet neighborhoods, past small pocket parks, murals, and resting ponies (no, really) before ending just north of Rinaldi Street near Stoney Point Park.

In October, we announced that the path would be undergoing major repair work. Since then, the entire path has been covered with new asphalt including portions where overgrown tree roots caused serious damage to the pavement. In the near future, LADOT will add additional path signage and gates at access points to prevent motor vehicles from entering the path. During our visit, with the December sun shining and repair work complete, the path looked as good as new.

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A bright mural greets path users.

More photos after the break:

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Planning for the Northvale portion of the Expo Bicycle Path moves forward

Back in September, we had our first public meeting with residents of Cheviot Hills and other members of the public about the Northvale segment of the Expo Bicycle Path. The purpose of the meeting was to gather public input from the community before LADOT begins to design the bicycle path. Receiving public input before designing the path allows us to better address the comunity’s concerns about the bicycle path. LADOT’s preliminary design will be communicated at a future public meeting.

About the Northvale portion:

The Northvale segment of the Exposition Bicycle Path will be on the north side of the Expo Light Rail line between Overland Avenue and Motor Avenue, as shown in the image below. This path is being funded and constructed separately from the Expo Line and is projected to open in 2017. Many factors including steep hills, convenience, and cost were considered when locating the bicycle path at this site. This path will not go under the freeway with the Expo Train because the existing tunnel is not wide enough for both. Widening the tunnel would be prohibitively expensive for the project.

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A site plan of the Northvale segment of the Expo Bicycle Path.

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Browns Creek Bicycle Path undergoing major repaving

Demo 10-28-13

Much needed repair work is finally underway.

Exposed Root

One of the smaller exposed roots

Portions of the Browns Creek Bike Path are closed as the bicycle path undergoes major repair work. Most notably, the path will be receiving new paving. Currently, portions of the path are obstructed by large tree roots and broken pavement that render the path almost un-useable.The repair work will also include the addition of access gates. In the future, these gates will be used to restrict bicyclists, pedestrian and other trail users from accessing the path during heavy storms when the creek overflows the channel.

The Browns Creek Bike Path is a 1.4 mile muilti-use trail that runs along the concrete-lined Browns Creek. The bicycle path starts in Northern Chatsworth near Stoney Point Park and continues south to connect users to the Orange Line Bike Path at the Chatworth Metrolink Station.

This project will be completed in early February, when it is expected to reopen just in time for some nice spring and summer bicycling. Expect to see an update and some more pictures of the renovated path then.