Mayor Announces New Westside Route for CicLAvia
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villagairosa presented the new Westside route for the city's next CicLAvia, a recurring event that blocks cars from local streets for the enjoyment of byclists and pedestrians.
For the first time, it will run from downtown Los Angeles to Venice Beach by way of Venice Boulevard. The next CicLAvia is scheduled for April 21.
Ciclavias first began in Bogota over thirty years ago as a response to the congestion and pollution of city streets. The first Los Angeles CicLAvia was held in October 2010.
"If we can have a marathon to the ocean, then we can have a CicLAvia to the ocean," Mayor Villaraigosa said during a news conference Thursday outside City Hall.
This Westside route is CicLAvia's longest and most ambitious plan to date. It will span 15 miles from El Pueblo to Venice Beach, connecting two parts of Los Angeles that residents usually travel between by car.
"I live by campus and avoid going to the Santa Monica area because I hate sitting in traffic," complained USC junior Jennifer Li.
"I've never thought about biking - or walking - out to the Westside."
Thursday's press conference was also held to provide updates on the city's "Master Bicycle Plan."
The plan, approved March 2011, calls for the creation of almost 2,000 miles of bikeway systems by 2042, with an average of 40 miles per year for the first five years.
Mayor Villaraigosa said LADOT exceeded expectations and has already built 123 new miles during the first two years of the plan's implementation. CicLAvia organizers hope this will diminish reliance on cars and encourage more biking and walking throughout the city.
"Our goal is bring CicLAvia to as many different communities as possible, and to reach all Angelenos regardless of where they live," said Aaron Paley, Executive Director of CicLAvia.
"And once again, Mayor Villaraigosa's leadership and support have made it possible for us to realize our vision."
Event organizers said additional funding secured by the mayor has made it possible for CicLAvia to be held three times in Los Angeles in 2013: April, June and October.