Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Support for Return of Venice Taffic Lanes

This letter was sent to the Board of the Mar Vista Community Council:

Dear Neighbors,

I am writing on behalf of Venice Stakeholders Association (VSA) to urge you to vote to restore the two traffic lanes which were lost on Venice Blvd. due to Mike Bonin's misguided and dangerous reconfiguration of that boulevard in central Mar Vista.

The VSA is a non-profit organization dedicated to civic improvement.  The VSA supports slow growth, protection of the limits of the Venice Specific Plan, neighborhood safety, better traffic circulation, increased parking for residents, neighborhood beautification projects, historic preservation, habitat restoration and protection of coastal waters.

The ill-conceived re-configuration of Venice Boulevard and the loss of two traffic lanes has had an immediate and detrimental impact on the life of Venice residents.  As you know, traffic is at a standstill during early morning and early evening drive times.  There has been a corresponding increase in cut-through traffic on other streets such as Palms, which are narrower and thus less capable of absorbing this east/west traffic.

Your residents have counted more accidents with this bizarre street/parking/bike lane layout than before it was installed.

As a long-distance cyclist I can attest to its highly unsafe design.  With the bike lane hidden behind a lane of cars, those on bikes cannot see if drivers are intending to turn right and drivers cannot see whether a bike is approaching as they start a right turn across the bike lane.

I frequently ride south to Redondo Beach and north to Cross Creek.  I know of no areas along those stretches (about 30 miles) which have a hidden bike lane such as one Bonin installed in your community.

And as you know, there was a perfectly acceptable bike lane on the boulevard before this change was made.

As the first-runner up in the recent Council District 11 race, I want you to know that I would not have supported the loss of two traffic lanes at this location.  Our east-west traffic infrastructure simply cannot afford any lane losses, however noble the cause.

If driver speed is an issue, we would suggest that it be addressed in the old fashioned way, with the frequent placement of motorcycle police officers along the boulevard to cite speeders.

Thank you for your consideration of our views.


Mark Ryavec, President