How We Roll, March 10: potential ballot measure talk, ped safety and hiking near the Gold Line

Art of Transit

One of my favorite photos from Saturday's opening of the Gold Line to Azusa. I gave this image a run through Analog Efex Pro for the vintagey look. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

One of my favorite photos from Saturday’s opening of the Gold Line to Azusa. I gave this image a run through Analog Efex Pro for the vintagey look. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

Video of Transit

The Militant Angeleno grabbed some good video on the Gold Line’s opening day.

Pedestrian deaths make up a rising share of U.S. traffic fatalities (Streetsblog) 

The numbers from the first half of 2015 aren’t good — showing deaths up 10 percent from the same time period in 2014. Why? Perhaps both distracted drivers and distracted pedestrians has something to do with it, Streetsblog ruminates — a rumination that sounds right-ish to me.

But what about enforcement? I spend a lot of time walking my pitty bull mix around Pasadena and surrounding hamlets and NEVER see police pull anyone over for driving through a crosswalk with people in it (which, btw, is a no-no). Of course, many pedestrian-involved accidents don’t happen at intersections, but still. I’ve had far too many close calls.

So let’s try a poll, as I’m curious about this and I was just standing on the sidewalk last night screaming pottymouth-type allegations at a car that left-turned while I was in the middle of a crosswalk:

 

Addendum: looks like ped deaths are up in California, too, reports KPCC.

Addendum2: if the internet is being truthy today, a citation for failing to yield in a crosswalk will cost $234 plus the cost of traffic school or an increase in your car insurance. I bet if that fine was increased to $1,000 and partnered with a smart social media campaign — video of a guy standing around office cooler telling his colleagues he just got gobsmacked with a $1,000 ticket — a lot more motorists would think twice before California rolling through an intersection.

Addendum3: Then again, no one has asked me.

Fourth sales tax hike faces uphill climb in the SFV (Daily News)

Key excerpt about the potential sales tax ballot measure that Metro is considering to put before voters in November:

The two-thirds requirement remains a big challenge. How can officials persuade 66.67 percent of county voters to pay a higher sales tax for transportation — for the fourth time?

They probably can’t. They need the support of San Fernando Valley voters, but Valley residents want actual transportation, not fantasies and promises. People at the summit asked for buses that run more frequently than once per hour, on a schedule that accommodates early-morning and late-night jobs, in locations where a lot of people need transportation.

What will the future of L.A. transit look like? (LAWeekly)

Gene Maddaus considers some of the transit projects that might be funded by the aforementioned ballot measure. The spending release will be released by Metro soon.

Editorial: Questions linger about L.A.’s transit future but for now enjoy the new Gold Line (LAT)

Here’s the questions part:

Yet critical challenges and decisions lie ahead. Why is ridership in a slump and can it be reversed? Can the cash-strapped agency raise fares without losing passengers? Can the region’s political leaders reach consensus on whether to put another half-cent sales tax on the ballot to build more transit lines? And would voters support it?

Answers: Probably, maybe, maybe and maybe. I certainly know how to stick my head out, eh?

Seven hikes near the Gold Line (Curbed LA)

The West Fork of the San Gabriel River above Azusa is a popular spot for fly fishermen. The trout tend to be small. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

The West Fork of the San Gabriel River above Azusa is a popular spot for fly fishermen. The trout tend to be small. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

Good roundup of hikes that can be accessed by walking, biking or taking transit from the Gold Line between DTLA and Azusa. Of the San Gabriel Mountains hikes, Eaton Canyon is the most transit friendly. But expect to see plenty of other people.

Question: why the heck aren’t there any Zipcars in Azusa, home to both Azusa Pacific U and Citrus College? The Gold Line plus a Zipcar in Azusa would make it really easy to reach Fish Canyon or drive into the San Gabriel River canyon, where I highly recommend going for a walk or pedal along the West Fork or a hike on the East Fork to the Bridge to Nowhere.

The Bridge to Nowhere on the East Fork of the San Gabriel River. Perhaps not the greatest place in the world to build a highway between Azusa and Wrightwood, thus the reason the highway was never finished -- much of it washed away in floods in the 1930s. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

The Bridge to Nowhere on the East Fork of the San Gabriel River. Perhaps not the greatest place in the world to build a highway between Azusa and Wrightwood, thus the reason the highway was never finished — much of it washed away in floods in the 1930s. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

 

 

 

7 replies

  1. “But what about enforcement? I spend a lot of time walking my pitty bull mix around Pasadena and surrounding hamlets and NEVER see police pull anyone over for driving through a crosswalk with people in it (which, btw, is a no-no).”
    True, but nor have I ever seen any pedestrian pulled over for walking against a flashing red hand or “count-down” numbers, both of which are also no-nos. The safe movement of everyone — pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit, automobiles, etc. — only happens smoothly when everyone obeys the laws.

  2. Again we see the question as to what the San Fernando Valley wants but not metropolitan Los Angeles where most of us live. As I have pointed out previously the Sunset Bl. /Santa Monica Bl. corridor is in complete grid lock during the AM and PM rush hours. This is not grid lock extending a couple of miles but ten to fifteen miles on both streets. When are we going to get relief? The City of West Hollywood is already pursuing alternatives and will be opposing any tax increase unless the grid lock problem is addressed.

  3. And if the sales tax measure is written to serve as a Trojan Horse to spend Billions on a 710 toll and truck tunnel, the motivated taxpayers in Pasadena, So. Pasadena, La Canada-Flintridge, Sierra Madre and Glendale will circle their Beemers, etc. and shoot down the sales tax measure as they did the last time.

    • Metro has already said that the 710 North project would not be part of a potential ballot measure.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  4. Please do some research and enlighten us. Unless things have changed, when there’s a street with a double yellow separator in the middle, a car can make a turn through a cross walk as long as the pedestrian(s) have not yet entered, or have already exited, the same side of the crosswalk that the car would cross.

    Failing to yield the right of way to a pedestrian is an expensive ticket and carries more points on your DMV record than most moving violations.

    • From the state — don’t drive through a crosswalk with a person in it and certainly don’t come within three or four feet of that person, as is often done by motorists:

      21950. (a) The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to
      a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or
      within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection, except as otherwise
      provided in this chapter.
      (b) This section does not relieve a pedestrian from the duty of
      using due care for his or her safety. No pedestrian may suddenly
      leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path
      of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.
      No pedestrian may unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a
      marked or unmarked crosswalk.
      (c) The driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any
      marked or unmarked crosswalk shall exercise all due care and shall
      reduce the speed of the vehicle or take any other action relating to
      the operation of the vehicle as necessary to safeguard the safety of
      the pedestrian.
      (d) Subdivision (b) does not relieve a driver of a vehicle from
      the duty of exercising due care for the safety of any pedestrian
      within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an
      intersection.

      There’s more here: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=veh&group=21001-22000&file=21949-21971

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source