Re-imagine Ventura Blvd. & Bike with Bob

ReimagineVent

Ventura Blvd. is arguably the Valley’s most iconic street.

It’s configuration and activeness varies, but you can never take away its prestige.

The far west portion is what I’d consider the sleepiest section in terms of foot traffic.

It’s also no coincidence that this is the widest Ventura gets and has more traffic lanes than are needed.

Last year, Council Member Bob Blumenfield held a community meeting along with some charrette action asking people how to make the street more useful.

 

ReimagineVentMeet

It was friendly talk at this community meeting last July.

 

It was a productive session where opposing viewpoints held civil exchanges even (gasp) listening to each other’s viewpoints.

A couple of weeks ago, Blumenfield’s office released their report to Re-imagine Ventura.

 

VenturaScheme

 Schematics.

 

Quite simply, if I was a Roman Emperor reading this, I’d turn my thumb in the upward direction.

There are a few shortcomings, but in terms of the types of progress made in the Valley, there are some bold steps.

The true eye grabber for me is not just the diagonal parking, but the fact that it’s back in.

I’m trying to think where else parking is configured like this in LA City and I can’t think of any off the top off my head (San Pedro?).

 

VenturaSam

Nice work here Sam Schwartz.

 

Backing in takes a little more time and skill than coming in from the front, but it also gives road users more clues to your intent.

On the other hand, coming out of the spot after backing in is way easier to maneuver than the other way with better sightlines and a clearer way out of there.

As part of this configuration, at least one lane will be eliminated in each direction and really, the street ain’t going to feel trafficky.

The reduction is a bit of a chicken and the egg thing because the roadway needs to narrow now that the diagonal parking takes up more horizontal real estate or is it the other way around?

 

VenturaParking

But locals will complain about the loss of parking…Wait, what?

 

Regardless, merchants should be happy because there’s a 30% increase in parking spaces and a couple extra crosswalks to get people across.

Plus, this should really cut down people from speeding

Does the fact that buffered instead of protected bike lanes are being added infuriate me?

Meh, not really because I think these improvements will benefit the safety for ALL users of the road.

I’d rather see another stop light at Ponce Ave. and bump outs to shorten the distance for people to walk across Ventura.

Another thing I’d like to see: this getting built.

Hopefully, this will be a sooner than a later project, but funding is still needed to push this ahead.

 

BlumenfieldBike2018

..and the 5th Bike with Bob is this Saturday!

 

Regardless, you should come out this Saturday for the 5th Annual Bike with Bob ride (if the rain holds up) and thank him for getting this process started and to encourage more in the future.

Keep it rolling West Valley.