Tag: pedestrians

Construction Begins On N. San Vicente Boulevard And Rosewood Avenue

February 8, 2024 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Wednesday, February 7, the city of West Hollywood announced on its website that construction has started for pedestrian safety improvements on N. San Vicente Boulevard and Rosewood Avenue.

The project includes new curb ramps, pedestrian/bicycle refuge islands, re-grading and re-paving of existing asphalt pavement, striping and signage improvements, EV charging station relocation, and pedestrian/bicycle crosswalks with a pedestrian hybrid beacon that is activated by pedestrians and/or bicyclists. Construction activities started in February 2024 and are expected to be completed by July 2024, weather permitting.

The city of West Hollywood indicated in a press release the crosswalk improvement effort is part of a commitment to explore a mix of measures to address safety. The constant movement of dense vehicular traffic and pedestrians in close proximity is a challenge not only in West Hollywood but in cities across the country. The enhanced crosswalks join a variety of improvements as part of a comprehensive plan with three unique areas to improve pedestrian safety: Engineering, Enforcement, and Education. Read about other pedestrian safety updates in the City here.

For additional details about West Hollywood’s engineering efforts to improve safety, contact the Department of Public Works at (323) 848-6375. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing call TTY (323) 848-6496.

By Trevor

SMPD Bike/Pedestrian Safety Operation For February 8

February 7, 2024 ·

SANTA MONICA—On Tuesday, February 6, the Santa Monica Police Department (SMPD) will conduct a Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation with focused enforcement efforts on primary collision factors involving motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists on Thursday, February 8 from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The SMPD identifies locations where pedestrian and bike collisions are prevalent, along with the violations that led to those collisions. Traffic officers will be on duty patrolling areas where bike and pedestrian traffic and collisions occur in an effort to lower deaths and injuries. Officers will be looking for violations committed by drivers, bike riders and pedestrians alike that can lead to life changing injuries. Violations include speeding, making illegal turns, failing to yield or provide right of way to bicyclists or pedestrians, or failing to stop for signs and signals.

“We all have places to be and not everyone gets there by car. Bicyclists and pedestrians have the same rights to the road but face even more risk without the protections vehicles have. We should all be looking out for one another,” said the SMPD.

Pedestrians
· Be predictable. Use crosswalks, when available.
· Take notice of approaching vehicles and practice due care.
· Do not walk or run into the path of a vehicle. At 30 mph, a driver needs at least 90 feet to stop.
· Be visible. Make it easy for drivers to see you – wear light colors, reflective material and carry a flashlight, particularly at dawn, dusk or at night.
· Be extra careful crossing streets or entering crosswalks at night when it is harder to see, or when crossing busier streets with more lanes and higher speed limits.

Drivers
· Follow the speed limit and slow down at intersections. Be prepared to stop for pedestrians at marked and unmarked crosswalks.
· Avoid blocking crosswalks while waiting to make a right-hand turn.
· Never drive impaired.

Bicyclists
· Obey traffic laws, use hand signals, use lights at night (front white light and rear red reflector), and wear a helmet.
· Bicyclists must travel in the same direction of traffic and have the same requirements as any slow-moving vehicle.
· Avoid the door zone: do not ride too closely to parked cars.
· If there’s a bike lane, use it, unless making a left turn, passing, or approaching a place where a right turn is allowed.
· Yield to pedestrians. Bicyclists must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians within marked crosswalks or within unmarked crosswalks at intersections.

Funding is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

By Trevor

Input Wanted For Pedestrian, Bicycle Improvements Around Potential Metro Stations

January 11, 2024 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—The city of West Hollywood announced on Tuesday, January 9 that Metro is studying the proposed Northern Extension of the Metro K Line, that could provide new rail connections to, from, and throughout the region, including up to three stations in the city.

According to a press release from the city of West Hollywood, they are complementing that effort by conducting a Rail Integration Study (RIS) to ensure all future rail service is carefully integrated into the region, while supporting sustainability goals and community expectations.

The current phase is looking to improve multimodal transportation and delivering safe routes to and from planned stations to maximize access, ridership, and use of future stations in West Hollywood.

A half-mile region was audited by West Hollywood near each potential station to examine pedestrian and wheeled access improvements.

West Hollywood audited a half-mile area around each potential station to explore potential pedestrian and wheeled access improvements. Input is being requested from the community via the Engage WeHo digital engagement tool to confirm the findings and to provide suggestions to the project team.

The project team will evaluate community feedback and suggestions to inform a draft first/last mile plan, which will be presented to West Hollywood advisory boards, commissions, and the West Hollywood City Council. They will transmit the approved plan to Metro and incorporate it into future updates to the City’s Capital Improvement Plan and other mobility planning documents that guide future infrastructure investments.

Residents, businesses, and frequent visitors are encouraged to share their feedback and suggestions on Engage WeHo to inform the plan’s development.  The survey is open and will remain open through Wednesday, February 7. Participants can provide input through an online form on any of the three stations proposed in West Hollywood as well as the Citywide bicycle network.

Interactive online maps are available for participants to place suggestions for improvements directly on online maps.

A specific number of stations have not been determined by Metro to serve the WeHo area. Pedestrian and bicycle improvements identified for any of the proposed station areas may be relevant regardless of the final route Metro selects as West Hollywood works to improve safety and mobility.

For more details about the survey go to engage.weho.org/metroFLM or contact David Fenn, Senior Planner, at (323) 848-6335 or dfenn@weho.org. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing call TTY (323) 848-6496.

By Trevor

Pedestrian And Bicycle Safety Operation January 4

January 4, 2024 ·

SANTA MONICA—The Santa Monica Police Department is conducting a Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation with focused enforcement efforts on primary collision factors involving motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.

The Police Department identifies locations where pedestrian and bike collisions are prevalent, along with the violations that led to those collisions. Traffic officers will be on duty patrolling areas where bike and pedestrian traffic and collisions occur in an effort to reduce deaths and injuries.

Officers will be looking for violations committed by drivers, bike riders and pedestrians alike that can lead to life changing injuries. Violations include speeding, making illegal turns, failing to yield or provide right of way to bicyclists or pedestrians, or failing to stop for signs and signals.

The extra enforcement efforts will take place on Thursday, January 4 between the hours of 6 a.m. and 9 p.m.

“We all have places to be and not everyone gets there by car. Bicyclists and pedestrians have the same rights to the road but face even more risk without the protections vehicles have. We should all be looking out for one another,” the SMPD stated.

Pedestrians· Be predictable. Use crosswalks, when available.· Take notice of approaching vehicles and practice due care.· Do not walk or run into the path of a vehicle. At 30 mph, a driver needs at least 90 feet to stop.· Be visible. Make it easy for drivers to see you – wear light colors, reflective material and carry a flashlight, particularly at dawn, dusk or at night.· Be extra careful crossing streets or entering crosswalks at night when it is harder to see, or when crossing busier streets with more lanes and higher speed limits. Drivers· Follow the speed limit and slow down at intersections. Be prepared to stop for pedestrians at marked and unmarked crosswalks.· Avoid blocking crosswalks while waiting to make a right-hand turn.· Never drive impaired.

Bicyclists· Obey traffic laws, use hand signals, use lights at night (front white light and rear red reflector), and wear a helmet.· Bicyclists must travel in the same direction of traffic and have the same requirements as any slow-moving vehicle.· Avoid the door zone: do not ride too closely to parked cars.· If there’s a bike lane, use it, unless making a left turn, passing, or approaching a place where a right turn is allowed.· Yield to pedestrians. Bicyclists must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians within marked crosswalks or within unmarked crosswalks at intersections.

Funding for the program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Photo by Gunnar Madlung.

By Trevor

Traffic Signal Synchronization Project On PCH Starts

December 5, 2023 ·

MALIBU—On November 29, the city of Malibu indicated in a news release that work will start on Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) starting between Topanga Canyon and Big Rock Drive in Malibu the week of December 4 on Malibu’s Traffic Signal Synchronization Project, which is a significant measure to date to improve safety and mobility on PCH.

“Since 2010, 58 individuals have died in accidents on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, and it is no surprise that improving safety on this iconic highway has been a top priority for our City,” said Mayor Steve Uhring. “Our signal synchronization project is a major step toward our goal of a safer PCH. Once completed it will make PCH safer for our residents, for the 40,000 commuters who pass through Malibu every day and for the 15 million visitors who visit Malibu every summer.”

The goal of the project is to make PCH a safer “Smart Corridor” by installing communication lines between the existing traffic signals on PCH from Topanga Canyon Boulevard to John Tyler Drive to synchronize the signals to existing traffic conditions. It will allow signals to be controlled remotely by the Caltrans Traffic Management Center to lower traffic speeds and decrease congestion.

New equipment will capture real-time traffic data and send it to the traffic signal controllers who will be using state-of-the art software to adjust the traffic signal timing to actual traffic volume. Vehicles going the speed over the speed limit will run into red lights, while those going the speed limit will encounter green lights. The project has new closed circuit TV cameras at each intersection; replace existing signal poles, street improvements and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility upgrades, Adaptive Traffic Control System (ATCS) sensors, and changeable message signs.

The project was approved by the Malibu City Council in 2017 and is a step toward achieving the top priority of Malibu’s PCH Safety Study.

According to CalTrans, PCH at Malibu Canyon Road sees roughly 4,600 cars per hour, or approximately 40,500 vehicles per day during peak hours during the summer months. About 1,215,000 vehicles pass through Malibu on PCH every month during the summer.
In the past 10 years, Malibu had more than 4,000 traffic collisions, 1,600 of which involved injuries and more than 100,000 traffic citations have been issued.

On October 17, 2023, four students from Pepperdine were killed by a speeding motorist while walking along PCH. Excessive speed is a commonly cited violation every year.

Speeding and improper turns are the most common contributing factor to collisions, both ofwhich will be directly addressed by the Traffic Signal Synchronization Project. The system will be used to enhance emergency evacuations and keep traffic moving rapidly and safely.
The $34.6 million project is fully funded through Measure R funds administered by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and is expected to take about one year to complete.

Work hours will transpire Monday through Friday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. with alternating lane closures in both directions, mostly on the right-hand lanes. Summer work hours (Memorial Day to Labor Day) will be Monday through Friday 7 a.m. – 4 p.m., with some nighttime work.

Residents can expect noise, lights, vibrations, and dust while work is being complete. Individuals are sked to look for workers and work vehicles in and around the roadway and altered traffic patterns. Under California law, traffic citations are doubled in construction zones. For more details visit www.MalibuCity.org/PCHSignalSynch.

By Trevor

Santa Monica Celebrates Bike And Pedestrian Safety Improvements

November 28, 2023 ·

SANTA MONICA—The city of Santa Monica announced in a press release on Monday, November 27 that on Saturday, December 2, the city will celebrate the completion of the newest addition to its protected bike network with a ribbon cutting event and activities throughout the morning.

The celebration starts at 9 a.m. and will run until 12 p.m. at the 17th St./SMC Metro E Line parking lot at 1610 Colorado Avenue.

According to a news release from the city of Santa Monica, improvements to bike and pedestrian safety have helped the city’s goal of focusing on a Sustainable and Connected Community. The project elevates foundational city initiatives in the community and feedback that came from the adopted Bike Action Plan Amendment, Pedestrian Action Plan, the Michigan Avenue Neighborhood Greenway (MANGo) Plan, and the city’s Land Use and Circulation Element.

“I’m thrilled to see such a robust, thoughtful and important multi-modal project come to completion,” said Mayor Gleam Davis. “By increasing separation from moving traffic and connecting neighborhoods, this project helps make walking and biking easier, encouraging sustainable practices that lead to healthier communities.”

The December 2 event will feature music, performances and workshops, including:

-Santa Monica High School marching band

-LA Jugglers performing with vintage bicycles

-Academia de Danza Ballet Folklorico Flor de Mayo

-Guided bike rides

-Free bike repair and tune ups from Santa Monica College Bike Maintenance Class

-Helmet decorating with Santa Monica Spoke

-Bike basket and accessories workshop with reDiscover Center

-Remarks from Mayor Gleam Davis, Police Chief Ramon Batista, and Department of Transportation Director Anuj Gupta

-Remarks from Cynthia Rose of Santa Monica Spoke

-Free donuts, coffee and hot cocoa

An event schedule is available here.

The Safe Streets for 17th Street and Michigan Avenue advances Santa Monica’s commitment to a Clean and Safe Santa Monica, including the Vision Zero initiative, which has the goal of eliminating severe traffic injuries and deaths on city streets.

Project elements that promote safety include:

-A concrete curb protected bikeway

-Increased lighting to better illuminate sidewalks and bike lanes

-Curb extensions and upgraded accessible curb ramps

-Freshly painted crossings to better define space for bicyclists and pedestrians and increase yielding compliance

-Protected intersections to reduce crossing distances, slow vehicles and turns, and facilitate left turns for bikes and scooters without needing to merge into traffic

-Curb extensions and new curb ramps at 14th and 15th Streets

-Mini traffic circles on 16th and 18th Streets, bringing a calm and predictable flow with landscaping and new trees

-Signal timing adjustments to give pedestrians a head start when crossing the street

Additional projects upcoming and underway within the Sustainable & Connected Community priority include bike and pedestrian improvements on Stewart Street, 20th Street and Wilshire Boulevard.

“I want to thank our community for their patience during construction of these critical upgrades. Projects such as this make our streets safer and more inviting for all users, including pedestrians, cyclists and motorists alike, while fighting climate change by encouraging more people to bike, walk, and connect to transit,” said Anuj Gupta. “I look forward to continuing to advance the City Council’s ambitious agenda and working closely with community members to improve safety and the overall experience of getting around our vibrant city.”

For more details, visit www.santamonica.gov/mobility-projects/safe-streets-for-17th-street-and-michigan-avenue.

By Trevor

PCH Taskforce Meeting At City Hall November 14

November 14, 2023 ·

MALIBU—The City will host a Special Public Meeting of the PCH Taskforce on Tuesday, November 14, at 10 a.m. at Malibu City Hall (located at 23825 Stuart Ranch Road) with City, County and State elected officials and Caltrans to discuss ways to address dangerous conditions on Pacific Coast Highway in the region.

State Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin, 42nd District, will chair the meeting, and will be joined by State Senator Ben Allen, 24th District, Malibu Mayor Steve Uhring, LA County Supervisor, 3rd District, Lindsey Horvath, Malibu City Manager Steve McClary, Malibu-Lost Hills Sheriff’s Station Commanding Officer Captain Jennifer Seetoo, Rafael Molina, Deputy District Director, Division of Traffic Operations, Caltrans District 7 and Lee Haber, Chief Safety Officer, Division of Traffic Operations, Caltrans District 7.

Members of the public can attend, watch, and give public comment in person at Malibu City Hall or via the Zoom meeting. Join the Zoom meeting.

The meeting agenda is available online.

The fact sheet on the City of Malibu’s efforts to improve safety on PCH is available to review online.

The City of Malibu reported on its website that the PCH Taskforce is a coalition of law enforcement, traffic engineers, Caltrans, and local and state elected officials working for solutions to make PCH safer for all users, from the McClure Tunnel in Santa Monica to the Ventura County line. The taskforce serves to update residents on ongoing projects related to the highway. It is chaired by Assemblymember Irwin and Senator Allen.

On October 19, the city noted on its website they are working to improve the safety on PCH after 4 students at Pepperdine University were killed after a crash. There are 21 miles of PCH in Malibu.

“The City was shocked and saddened by the loss of the four Pepperdine University students on October 17. Our hearts are with all of those who have been impacted by this tragedy. While the City does not control PCH, since its incorporation, Malibu has worked closely with Caltrans, the LA County Sheriff’s Department and our other partner agencies to find ways to make PCH safer for residents, motorists, pedestrians and cyclists. We will continue to push for resources to achieve a higher level of safety for our community,” said the City of Malibu in a statement.

The city is focused on enhancing safety on PCH, and will continue to do so with the following projects and programs:

CITY-FUNDED TRAFFIC SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS ON PCH

To date, Malibu has allocated and spent approximately $39 million dollars on traffic safety improvement projects on PCH, including:

-PCH Bike Route along Zuma Beach

-PCH and Kanan Dume Arrestor Bed – The project was built to stop runaway vehicles from crashing into PCH

-La Costa pedestrian crosswalk signal

-PCH and Big Rock traffic signal improvements

-PCH traffic signal synchronization project

-PCH median improvements project

-PCH Las Flores and Rambla Pacifico intersection improvements

-PCH and Trancas Canyon Road intersection improvements

The City currently has $8 million dollars of funds obligated towards future PCH safety improvement projects, including:

-PCH median improvements near Paradise Cove and Zuma Beach

-Traffic safety improvements at PCH and Big Rock Drive

-Pedestrian undercrossing at Corral Canyon Beach (by Malibu Seafood)

PCH TRAFFIC SIGNAL SYNCHRONIZATION PROJECT

-Work started in summer 2023 on the City’s most significant measure to date to improve traffic safety and mobility on PCH. Completion expected in 2025.

-Communications lines will be installed between traffic signals on PCH from Topanga Canyon Blvd to John Tyler Drive to synchronize them to existing traffic conditions, and they will be controlled by the Caltrans Traffic Management Center.

-According to CalTrans, during the past 10 years, there have been more than 4,000 collisions on PCH in Malibu. Speeding and improper turns are the most common contributing factors to collisions, both of which will be directly addressed by the Signal Synchronization Project. The system can also be used to help emergency evacuations move quickly and safely. The $34.6 million project is fully funded through County Measure R transportation funds.

PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING, COLLABORATION WITH PARTNER AGENCIES AND LEGISLATION

PCH is a state highway under the jurisdiction of Caltrans, so Malibu has very limited ability to make changes to PCH. The city does as much as possible to improve safety on PCH within its ability.

-The City dedicates 28.2% of the General Fund, $16.4 million, toward public safety, of which $15 million goes toward our contract with the LA County Sheriff’s Department. The City puts additional funds every year for the Sheriff’s Department to do saturation patrols every weekend.

-Sheriff’s Volunteers on Patrol Program. The City funds the program, including their patrol vehicles – they patrol and report incidents to the Sheriff’s Dept, direct traffic after collisions, offer aid to motorists who have been in collisions and more.

-Sheriff’s Summer Beach Team. The city also funds the Beach Team every summer, which patrols Malibu’s beaches, focusing largely on alcohol consumption on the beach, which is illegal. Their work helps prevent drunk driving on PCH, and last summer they issued more than 1,000 alcohol citations.

-Automated License Plate Readers. The city started installing these tools in 2023 to offer an additional enforcement tool for Sheriff’s Department to address theft, property crimes, and other public safety and crime issues in Malibu by helping to identify suspects in fleeing vehicles, stolen vehicles, suspects with outstanding warrants, etc. The cameras are solar-powered and have backup batteries, can operate day or night, and during a variety of weather conditions.

-PCH Taskforce. For nearly two decades, the City has participated in this active coalition of community representatives, pedestrian and bicycle advocates, law enforcement, city and traffic engineers, Caltrans, and local and state elected officials. Includes cities of Santa Monica, Los Angeles, Malibu and unincorporated Los Angeles County. Collaborating and advocating for traffic safety funding, studies, etc.

-The PCH Taskforce Safety Corridor grant. The grant was awarded to the City on behalf of the PCH Taskforce, funded the purchase changeable message signs for posting traffic safety and emergency messages, three pedestrian and bicycle safety assessments and training events, and educational outreach aimed at all users of the highway, including the PCH Safety Video PSA.

-PCH Safety Study (2015). The study, in collaboration with SCAG, examined road conditions, accident patterns, and proposes strategies to improve safety on PCH in Malibu. The study recommended safety improvements for motorists, cyclists, transit riders and pedestrians. It was funded by a Caltrans Partnership Planning Grant, with a contribution from the City.

-Overnight parking restrictions of RVs and oversized vehicles. The City restricted overnight parking of oversized vehicles on multiple sections of PCH. RVs and oversized vehicles jut out into lanes, reducing visibility, forcing traffic over into the middle of the road, making it hazardous for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.

By Trevor

Improvements To Wilshire Boulevard To Enhance Safety, Transit Service

April 19, 2023 ·

SANTA MONICA—The city of Santa Monica reported on its website that construction for safety enhancements on Wilshire Boulevard on the corridor between Ocean and Centinela Avenues is slated to begin on Monday, May 1. Developed as part of the Wilshire Safety Study, which evaluated the 2.4-mile corridor, incorporated community feedback and crash data analysis to determine the most effective and high-impact approach to enhancing transportation safety and transit service. The modifications aim to enhance safe routes to schools while also promoting pedestrian and bicycle travel to nearby establishments such as grocery stores and health care facilities.

“I am thrilled about the upcoming safety improvements to Wilshire Boulevard,” says Santa Monica Mayor Gleam Davis. “These changes will enhance the safety of our residents and visitors while promoting a more walkable and livable community. Santa Monica is committed to intelligent street design that promotes safety, equity, and accessibility for all modes of transportation.”

Planned Wilshire Boulevard improvements include:

-Infrastructure Upgrades: Complete repaving of Wilshire Boulevard followed by improved road markings, refreshed crosswalks, and painted areas to make it clearer where pedestrians can cross.

-Pedestrian Visibility: Highly visible flashing beacons at five intersections will signal to motorists that they must yield to the pedestrian crossing the street.

-Hot Spot Solutions: To reduce the number of collisions at 14 intersections without traffic signals, the side streets will be restricted to right turns only. Although few vehicles continue straight or turn left at these intersections, they are involved in a disproportionately high number of collisions. Approximately one out of every five collisions at these locations occurs when drivers make a left turn or continue straight.

-Transit Improvements: Bus stops will be marked with bright red pavement to discourage private vehicles from blocking them. Loading zones will be installed next to bus stops so that vehicles have a space to pick up and drop off passengers without creating blockages. Bus stop enhancements will improve transit service for Big Blue Bus Route 2, and Metro Routes 20 and 720. Transit ridership is expected to increase in the Wilshire Boulevard corridor upon completion of the Metro Purple (D Line) subway extension to Westwood, scheduled to open in phases between 2024-2027.

-Better Bike Connections: Special markings at four intersections will create dedicated space for cyclists to safely cross Wilshire Boulevard.

“With these changes, the community is taking a major step toward realizing our Vision Zero goal of eliminating fatal and severe injury crashes from our streets by 2026. Additionally, we will be able to provide faster and more reliable bus service for our customers, ultimately making it easier for them to access all that Santa Monica and the Westside has to offer,” said Ed King, Director of the Santa Monica Department of Transportation. “We are committed to creating a transportation network that meets the needs of our community, and these improvements are an important step towards that goal.”

The commu

nity engagement process which lasted over a year, included close to 20 presentations to neighborhood groups and schools, stakeholder meetings, on-the-street canvassing, digital outreach, and a comprehensive social media campaign. Forty percent of public comments identified difficult crossing conditions as a concern on Wilshire Boulevard.

The improvements are part of a comprehensive initiative to make the street more accessible for pedestrians and will continue with Phase 2 next year. Phase 2 improvements are in the design stage and will focus on more permanent changes like concrete curb extensions, and improved lighting.

For more details about the Wilshire Boulevard Safety Enhancements, visit santamonica.gov/mobility-projects/wilshire-boulevard-safety-enhancements.

By Donald