Metro

Metro Offers Update on Rail-to-River Bike/Ped Path Design; Project to Break Ground Mid-2018

From LA.Streetsblog.org

 

On June 29, Metro held a public update on the Rail-to-River bike and pedestrian path project slated for the Slauson corridor in South L.A.

The update was to showcase the design progress on Segment A (in green, above) thus far, get feedback on the proposed design, and advise the community of next steps.

For those unfamiliar with the project, the Rail-t0-River project is an Active Transportation Corridor planned for the Metro-owned rail right-of-way (ROW) along Slauson Avenue in South Los Angeles. The 6.4 mile stretch of Segment A was planned to facilitate transit users’ movement between the Crenshaw, Silver, Blue, and local bus Lines, while Segment B (in pink) would connect South L.A. with the Southeast Cities and, eventually, the L.A. River, expanding the regional bicycle network.

Because Metro must negotiate with Union Pacific to access the ROW along Randolph Street (the route chosen for Segment B) and work out plans with the cities the route will pass through, planning for Segment A has moved at a much quicker pace. Metro expects to see the preliminary (30 percent) design completed shortly and to hire a design/build construction contractor to finish the plans and break ground by mid-2018.

The project would be completed in late 2019, around the time that the Crenshaw/LAX Line would be opening.

 

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Metro’s Union Station bike hub

From Curbed.com

 

Cyclists looking for more bike parking options at Union Station will have a cool new bike hubbefore the year is over. Metro began construction on the hub earlier this year, and it’s starting to take shape on the north side of Union Station, near the Amtrak bus bay and the Mozaic apartments.

The bike hub would offer members secure, 24-hour bike storage in a freestanding building that would also offer bike repair services.

The hub would be a safe way to store bikes while people use the other transportation available at Union Station, and would theoretically reduce the need for hub members to take their bikes on Metro buses and trains.

Membership to the hub currently ranges from $5 for a seven-day pass to $60 for a yearlong pass, and each type of membership gives users round-the-clock access to all extant hubs, according to the Bike Hub site.

The Union Station bike hub is scheduled to open this fall. Metro already has hubs in El Monte and one at Hollywood and Vine, which just opened in May.

 

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The Hollywood + Vine bike hub is opening May 19 and here’s what you need to know about it

From Metro.net

The first Metro Bike Hub opened at El Monte Station in 2015, and now we’re gearing up to open the second at Hollywood and Vine on Friday, May 19. The public is welcome to come to the opening ceremony that morning at 9 a.m.

The Hollywood + Vine Metro Bike Hub has capacity for 64 bicycles and is located around the corner from the Red Line Hollywood/Vine Station. In anticipation of its opening, here’s a quick refresher of seven things you need to know about Metro Bike Hubs.

What is a Metro Bike Hub?

A Metro Bike Hub is a facility that offers bicyclists a safe and convenient place to park their bikes. The hub has controlled entry and 24/7 access for paid members. Attended hours vary by location and offer repair services and bike rentals. There’s a retail section for bike lights, bike locks and many other bike accessories. Metro Bike Hubs also provide free clinics such as Flat Tire Repair and Bicycle Commuting 101.

Why should I use a Metro Bike Hub?

When you park your bike at a bike hub, you’ll know that it is secure. The bike hub has CCTV coverage and a security alarm. Supporting amenities catering to bike commuters make it a one-stop shop for your bike transit needs.

Where are they?

There is currently one Metro Bike Hub located at the front of El Monte Station. The second will be opening in a few weeks at Hollywood and Vine

 

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Metro is Looking for input on where their bikeshare should go in LA County

Click below it inout your suggestions:

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Metro Committees Approve Union Station Bike Hub Budget

From StreetsBlogLA

 

Metro has big plans for upgrading L.A.’s historic Union Station to prepare for the 21st century. Future plans include run-through tracks (SCRIP), high-speed rail, expanded structures, and pedestrianization of station frontage. Construction is already underway on the new busway station. One small project that took a small step forward today is the Union Station Metro Bike Hub.

 

Metro had planned and budgeted to site the bike hub in an existing underground parking area below Patsaouras Plaza. The planned area was converted to ADA parking, so the bike hub was moved to a new stand-alone structure on the north side of the ticketing room in the historic station – near the Mosaic Apartments. Moving the site from within an existing building to a new freestanding building has increased the cost from $1.3 million to $2.5 million.

 

The Union Station Metro Bike Hub will be similar to the existing bike hub at the El Monte Silver Line BRT Station, which includes staffed bike parking, bike repair services, basic bike supply retail and some bike education materials.

 

Today, two Metro board committees (Finance, Budget and Audit, Planning and Programming) approved the $1.15 million budget increase. The item will now go to the full Metro board for likely approval at their February 23 full board meeting. If approved by the full board, construction would start next month, with an anticipated opening in Fall 2017.

 

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Metro’s Measure M Passes with Overwhelming Support

WHAT IS MEASURE M?

 

Measure M, known as the “Los Angeles County Traffic Improvement Plan,”  is a half-cent sales tax ballot measure that L.A. County residents have the opportunity to vote on this November. The measure will provide approximately $120 billion over 40 years for transportation projects. Of that money, over $4 billion is set aside for walking and biking. Measure M will give Los Angeles County its first sustained source of funding for walking and biking projects.

Measure M will take Los Angeles County to the next level of bicycle infrastructure. For example, bicycling from the Valley to Long Beach on the Los Angeles River will finally be made possible, by connecting through the downtown section of the Los Angeles River from the Elysian Valley to Maywood.

With Measure M, communities will become more livable with better amenities for people who walk and bike. With sustainable local funding, cities will be able to make streets safer for all people who want to age, live, work and play in place. More livable communities means better quality of life for you and everyone you love.

Not only will Measure M further connect Los Angeles County by expanding our rail network, but it will link communities to each other. You will have more reliable and efficient options to get to the people and places that matter. Measure M will bring Los Angeles County together.

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Metro approves $4.14 million for more open streets events like CicLAvia

Every couple of weeks, cars that usually clog the streets of Southern California are replaced with residents on bikes — and now, folks will have more chances to participate. Metro announced Monday that it’s setting aside over $4 million to fund 17 open streets events, like CicLAvia, across Los Angeles County.

The purpose is to get people out of their cars and onto another form of transportation, Metro spokesman Dave Sotero told KPCC.

“They may be riding these streets for the very first time. Because unless there’s a bike lane on a particular street, these streets are taken up by automobiles on a daily basis,” he said.

Metro already funds the biggest open streets program in the country, he added.  This would be the second round of events that they’ve backed. The first round funded 10 events that covered a total 68 miles.

While giving Angelenos an opportunity to see the city through a new lens, Sotero said, the decision to provide these funds also tries to address some of the congestion and pollution that the city faces.

Whether the increase in these events tangibly alleviates pollution numbers is unknown — but it does boost ridership on local light rail trains and buses.

During previous open streets events, ridership has increased an average of 10 percent, according to Sotero. They’ve also seen a slight surge in the sales of single and 30-day passes when the streets are car-free.

“We do see a tangible benefit from introducing open streets that connect well with the transit system within the county,” he said.

The new events are set to happen by December 2018 in West Hollywood, Glendale, Whittier, San Pedro and other communities. Here’s a map of all the planned events:

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Metro’s first bike-only on-ramp to San Gabriel River bike path

The paved bikeway plunges into the buckwheat-and-sage-scrub-covered spreading grounds of the San Gabriel River, projecting an unobstructed view of the San Gabriel Mountains beyond the curved, concrete spillway of the Santa Fe Dam.

But the spectacular views are not the new bike path’s only firsts.

The 1.1-mile, $1 million path is the first bike-only on-ramp to the existing 28-mile San Gabriel River bike path stretching north-to-south between the mountains and Long Beach.

It’s also the first car-less bicycle-train connection in Los Angeles County, joining bike rider with train rider at the Metro Gold Line Duarte/City of Hope Station on Duarte Road and Highland Avenue.

“Connecting the Metro Gold Line to 28 miles of the San Gabriel River Bike Trail: that in and of itself is an accomplishment,” said county Supervisor Hilda Solis on Thursday at the trail’s grand opening.

In truth, the bike trail is only half completed. The Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation say the first section of the trail from the Gold Line station to the river area is scheduled for completion in 2021, at the earliest.

Also, there are no signs pointing to the new bike path. Train passengers have to walk their bikes across a busy section of Duarte Road, then find the unmarked, decomposed granite trail that leads northward to the new paved bike trail that cuts across the river grounds.

This first phase of the new bike path took 11 years to complete.

The process began in 2005 with the city of Duarte City Council asking and receiving in 2007 a $460,000 grant from the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Agency (Metro), said Karen Herrera, Duarte deputy city manager.

But the city is trying to complete the trail from Duarte Road, along the City of Hope auxiliary parking lot that will connect to the paved bike trail, Herrera said.

Some say the county’s stated goal of building more protected bike lanes is moving at a snail’s pace, slower than other cities.

“We need to get faster,” said Wes Reutimann, executive director of Bike San Gabriel Valley, who pointed out New York City has committed to building 15 miles of protected bicycle lanes in 2016.

Supervisor Michael Antonovich, who did not appear at the ribbon-cutting, sent his chief of staff Kathryn Barger, who is running for his spot in November. Barger agreed that 11 years is too long to build a 1 mile bike path without a true connection to the Gold Line station and with no signs pointing the way.

“We want to work with City of Hope to getting better connectivity right here. You want it to be accessible. You want people to know where it is,” she said.

Delays have come from many sources, Herrera said.

First, the project was stopped in June when a California gnatcatcher was discovered on the spreading grounds. The endangered bird species requires that habitat is not destroyed and any work must wait until after breeding season.

Second, the Army Corps of Engineers was concerned about putting a bikeway through a flood zone and moved very slowly. “The Corps was very concerned about safety and maintaining their flood infrastructure. That’s been the holdup,” said Zach Likins with the county Department of Parks and Recreation.

This is only the second crossing of the San Gabriel River connecting walkers and bikers to the San Gabriel River Bike Trail. The other is north of Huntington Drive on the Puente Largo Bridge, Herrera said.

Duarte is trying to add sidewalks to the south side of Duarte Road to make it easier to ride a bike to the decomposed granite trail. That project will cost $21,000, she said.

Metro Explores Alternative Rail-to-River Routes Through Southeast Cities

From Streetsblog.org

 

In thinking about the potential routes the eastern segment (B) of the Rail-to-River (R2R) active transportation corridor might take, stressed Mark Lopez of East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice, it was important that the needs of workers, youth, and community members of the Southeast Cities be put front and center. Connectivity to job centers and schools should therefore be the first priority.

Through that lens, Lopez said, the bike path project could offer momentum for the creation of other potential “job trails” EYCEJ had already been thinking about, including connections to Vernon, and Commerce, a path along Slauson that would facilitate connections across the L.A. River and the 710 Freeway to the Bell Cheli Industrial area, and routes enhancing greater access to the river and green spaces like Riverfront Park.

 

I had reached out to Lopez for feedback after attending Metro’s mid-afternoon session on the R2R project held last Wednesday in Huntington Park. The R2R project – a dedicated bike and pedestrian path that will stretch between the Crenshaw and Blue Lines, and to (or through) the Southeast cities to the east – is much-needed in the park-poor and truck-dominated corridors of the communities of South Central and Southeast Los Angeles.

Class i bike facilities. Source: Feasibility Study

Class I bike facilities separate and protect cyclists from cars. Source: Feasibility Study

But many of the participants, I realized as we gathered around the tables to decide how to serve Southeast residents’ needs best, were not from the area and/or not very familiar with where people worked or how they got there. All of which made speaking to Metro’s purpose for the meeting – discussing and ranking the four alternatives for Segment B of the active transportation corridor – somewhat difficult.

Metro’s own 2014 feasibility study had determined that the Randolph Street option should be prioritized. It would not necessarily be the easiest choice – the rail right-of-way (ROW) is owned by Union Pacific, meaning that the cost of acquisition could be quite high and the negotiations involved in acquiring the ROW could take some time. But factors in its favor included the length the route would cover (4.34 miles), user experience, connectivity, safety, transit connections, ease of implementation (see p. 76), and the fact that it would allow cyclists to continue on a dedicated Class I bike path (a separated and protected path, at right). And because the ROW is as wide as 60′ in some sections, it would allow for the inclusion of many or more of the amenities present on the western and central segments of the path.

Users would not have to move back and forth between busy streets and dedicated Class I facilities or lose the bike and pedestrian paths altogether, as they would with the Utility Corridor or Slauson routes. It would also offer users a safe, protected, and lengthy east-west connection through a densely populated and semi-industrial section of Los Angeles usually dominated by heavy traffic and large trucks.

Although, like Randolph Street, the Malabar route would be able to provide users with a dedicated and protected path, it narrows considerably (which would push pedestrians aside) as it makes its way north toward Washington Blvd. It would also move users through less secure industrial areas with fewer connections to transit, residential neighborhoods, commercial corridors, or educational centers. Also, as in the case of Randolph Street, the use of the Malabar Yards ROW would require negotiations with BNSF to get it to abandon its rights to the ROW east of Santa Fe Ave.

All that said, it was still not 100 per cent clear to me which route would better connect residents with their jobs.

A form of demand modeling that summarized the total population and jobs within three miles of the segment and divided that total by the segment length suggested that the Malabar route might serve approximately 100,000 more bicycle trips annually than Randolph Street.

 

Read more here.

10 things to know about Metro Bike Share

1. What is bike share?

Bike share is a public bike system for short trips. You can use any of the bikes in any dock any time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all year. The system uses special bikes that lock into docks placed around in many locations throughout downtown Los Angeles — every couple blocks.

2. Where is it?

The first pilot phase of Metro Bike Share is in downtown Los Angeles, where there will be up to 65 stations. The above map shows the location of stations; a dynamic version of the map is here.

Download our Metro Bike Share app for a real-time map of available bikes and locations of docking stations.

3. Where do I lock up the bike?

At the Metro Bike Share station nearest your destination — and there are stations close to most destinations. If you don’t dock the bike, the clock keeps running on your tab. If you’re not riding, just dock it.

4. How do I use Metro Bike Share?

To use a bike after purchasing a pass, simply tap a TAP card to the dock to unlock the bike. Ride to your destination and then return the bike to the nearest dock.

Make sure to follow the rules of the road like riding with the flow of traffic and stopping at stop signs. In DTLA, the following streets have bike lanes:

  • Main Street between Cesar Chavez and Venice Boulevard (the stretch between Cesar Chaves and 9th is for northbound riders).
  • Springs Street between Cesar Chavez and 9th Street (for southbound riders).
  • Olive Street between 7th Street and Washington Boulevard.
  • Grand Avenue between Wilshire Boulevard and Washington Boulevard.
  • Los Angeles Street between 1st Street and Alameda Street — the lane begins/ends right in front of Union Station.
  • 2nd Street between Spring Street and 1st Street.
  • 1st Street between Beaudry Avenue and San Pedro Street.
  • 3rd Street between San Pedro Street and Santa Fe Avenue.
  • 7th Street between Main Street and the 110 freeway (and beyond, all the way to Catalina Street).
  • Figueroa Street between Wilshire Boulevard and Cesar Chavez Ave./Sunset Blvd.
  • 11th Street between Broadway and Wall Street.

We strongly encourage riding on the street to be courteous to pedestrians on sidewalks. Remember, even if there is no bike lane, every lane is a bike lane. See this post from LADOT for more information about riding on sidewalks.

5. How much does it cost to ride a bike?

It depends!

For the first month of service, Metro Bike Share will only be open to Monthly or Annual Flex pass holders.

The Monthly Pass is the all-you-can-eat option. For $20 per month, you can ride the system as much as you want in 30-minute increments. This is the best deal for those who will be riding three or more times each week.

The Annual Flex Pass is the pay-as-you-go option for the occasional rider. For $40 a year, you get access to Metro Bikes for $1.75 for every 30-minute ride.

Pass holders must register with a credit card to use a bike (this discourages theft). Your TAP card is then used to quickly and easily unlock a bike at the docking stations. Please see this post for more about TAP cards and Metro Bike Share.

6. What if I don’t have a TAP card?

You can get a new one in the mail when you buy a Metro Bike Share Pass. Or get a TAP card at any TAP Vending Machine (at all Metro Rail and Orange Line stations) and then register the card as part of purchasing your Monthly or Annual Flex Pass.

After August 1, the Walk-Up option will become available. With Walk-Up, you don’t need a TAP card to get a Metro Bike. You access the system with a credit card at the kiosk at each station. Walk-Up rates are $3.50 per half hour. This is the best choice for very occasional users and tourists.

Pro Tip: If you are a visitor but you plan to ride six or more times during your stay, the $20 Monthly Pass is a better deal.

7. Do I need a helmet? What about lights? Where do I put my stuff?

In California, those riding bikes aged 17 and under are legally required to wear a helmet. If 18 or over, helmet use is up to you. If you want to use a helmet, please bring your own. Metro Bike Share does not provide them.

The bikes come equipped with lights and reflective paint for night riding. The bikes also have baskets in front behind the big Metro M that can carry a small grocery bag.

8. Are the bikes in good condition?

Yes. The bikes are frequently maintained so you don’t have to worry about chains breaking or under-inflated tires. Trust us — the bikes are built like tanks. They are heavy, sturdy, and ride smoothly so you even a novice rider can feel safe over a rough patch of road.

9. Does it work with Santa Monica’s bike share system?

Currently, the bikes and docks used by Metro Bike Share and Santa Monica Breeze Bike Share are not interchangeable. So the bikes can’t move between systems.

The key to moving between bike share systems is your TAP card. Register it with both systems and you can use a single TAP card to access bikes in both DTLA and Santa Monica. Long term, we’re working towards more integration, so that you don’t have to have multiple accounts.

Also, let’s be practical. If you’re intending to ride between Santa Monica and DTLA, you’re going to need a bike for more than 30 minutes. In that case, you’ll probably want a traditional rental bike and something a little more nimble and lighter. That are plenty of bike rental shops in Santa Monica as well as L.A.

10. Why should I ride Metro Bike Share?

Number one reason — it’s the most fun way we know to get around. Get on a bike and we dare you not to smile. But practically speaking, Metro Bike Share is meant to make it easier to get around downtown. Ever tried parking in the Arts District? It’s awful. Dining in Chinatown and then heading to the Staples Center? Such a drag. With a TAP card in hand, you can now seamlessly arrive in DTLA via Metro Rail and ride a Metro Bike to your favorite or yet-to-be-discovered dinner spots, coffee shops, art galleries, boutiques, and endless cultural offerings without a car.