Yesterday, I snuck into Northridge to have my first look at the near completion of the city’s first Great Streets project on Reseda Blvd.
Well, not really sneak. That just sounds cooler. I joined Brian Oh from Mitch Englander’s office and Elizabeth Gallardo from DOT along with a couple of other eager valleyites to see what a complete street would bring.
While this is going to be a fantastic project, it’s going to be a brave new world the first couple of months as people acclimate to their new surroundings. I thought back to the Orange Line opening, when the addition of new traffic signal caused people to loose the ability to stop at red lights.
You get that vibe here too as lane striping was still in progress. More drivers than not ended up parking in the bike lane rather than the new buffered zone. Enforcement is light, giving people some time to become acclimated, but people will get a greater sense once all the bollards are installed.
The great feature about the street furniture is its mid-century styling, chosen in part by the community. Obviously, your eye gets drawn to the variety of bright pieces that appear straight showroom ready that hipsters will drool over.
If I’m going the be valley nitpicky guy, I would have liked to see some red and black colors to reference CSUN just a block away(disclaimer: I’m a sucker for that regal looking Matador mascot!).
For this being the first project in the mayor’s Great Streets program, it needed to set a high standard and I’m sure the other council districts will want to get on board following the sensational example this sets.
Here’s some of the pics I took that will give you an early idea of things to come!
The rumors are untrue that the new street furniture appears in the final episode of Mad Men
The first Great Streets bike rack installed just minutes before
In order to keep neck and neck with Streetsblog LA’s coverage, I hired the same cyclist to appear in my photos too!
You don’t need a map! You’ve already here!
I wish I could say this is a London cycletrack, but it’s a guy riding the wrong way.
Just adding King’s Burgers/Got Sushi? to add to my valley street cred!
Take your pick over who can’t read signage more!