Tag Archives: public transportation

CSUN’s pedestrian safety examined

An intersection near CSUN. Courtesy of the Daily Sundial. Photo Credit: Jonathan Pobre / Executive Editor

While still a journalism student not too long ago, one of this blogger’s last projects included an investigative story about the lack of pedestrian safety near Cal State University, Northridge.  Recent hit-and-run accidents — including that of Chinese exchange student, Yao Lu, who was seriously injured and in a coma for eight days after being hit by a car as she crossed a painted crosswalk — spurred the investigation, which was printed in CSUN’s Daily Sundial (Full disclosure: I’m a former EIC!) as a four-part series earlier this October & November.

For those interested, the article can be found here:

Part 1, posted Oct. 12: Student journalists investigate traffic accidents and injuries on and around CSUN campus

Part 2, posted Oct. 19: Intersections near campus dangerous, community says

Part 3, posted Nov. 8: Examining busy CSUN-area intersections

Part 4, posted Nov. 14: Drivers, pedestrians on both sides of safety coin

After working on this story, I noticed one particular accident-prone intersection in my North Hollywood neighborhood.  Those familiar with the madness that is the Lankershim/Vineland/Riverside intersection often feel pity to L.A. newcomers confused with any left-turn making within that triple-threat spot:

Just south of that intersection is one of our favorite local Italian restaurants, Little Toni’s — which is impossible to get to legally by foot or bicycle.  Anyone have similar not-so-pedestrian-friendly spots in their neighborhoods?

Coming in 1960: The monorail in L.A.

Imagine that it’s 1959: Fidel Castro has just risen to power, doe-eyed Barbie wins the hearts of millions of little girls, and Alaska and Hawaii have just become the last two stars on the American flag.

In the following year of 1960, Los Angeles would have looked forward to a 75-mile monorail that would have stretched from Santa Monica to San Bernardino, as well as through the Valley and Alhambra.

Unfortunately, “the plan for an elevated monorail on Wilshire upsets corridor stakeholders, and the plan was scrapped,” according to Metro, which recently uploaded some of their historic transit maps and plans as old as over 100 years their online library via Scribd.

The monorail would have cost $529,700,000 and eventually would ‘ve expanded to 150 miles from San Fernando to Inglewood and other areas throughout L.A., notes document’s caption.

Users can also check out Mad Men-era bus routes back when Metro was still Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (LAMTA), or the streetcar routes of 1906.

In modern transit news, Metro just OK’d long-range transportation plans that would expand their bus, rail and subway services.  Steve Hymon, formerly of the L.A. Times, writes on Metro’s “The Source” blog the $300 billion project spanning over the next 30 years will extend the Foothill Gold Line.  I’m hoping the “subway to the sea” plan will finally get me from NoHo to Santa Monica car-free sometime within the next decade.

Rain 101: Car-less destinations for a not-so-sunny day

The Grand Central Market, seen from Angels Flight

The Grand Central Market, with its sawdust-covered floors, is a great place to get fresh produce or sit down for a variety of food. Seen here from Angels Flight, you can get to the market from the Pershing Square Metro Red line stop.

It’s been not-so-sunny lately, and sometimes I wonder whether my fellow citizens are lacking adequate access to the Weather Channel, the Internet, or a newspaper in the morning (or…a window).  Not because I feel uncomfortable in elevators and need something quick to babble about for 45 seconds until all riders part for their separate floors, but because regardless of Dallas Raines’ forecast, I’m terrified of the drivers who missed the memo about 150% chance of pouring rain.  No matter if its 75 or 57, sweltering hot or cats & dogs, there are those who drive 95 mph on the 101 as if slip-and-slide season were all year.

When the rain comes out, I try to avoid driving as much as possible.  The Metro Red line is conveniently located less than a mile from where I live, and in honor of my favorite, often hassle-less mode of transportation, here are some things to do off the Red line route when it’s just sprinkling outside.  Please note that some of these destinations require walking (I still think Missing Persons were missing something when they sang, “Nobody walks in L.A.”), an umbrella might be useful, so long as it’s not pouring out.

Museum Row in the Miracle Mile District off Wilshire Boulevard gets an honorable mention because they’re not subway-accessible (yet!).  The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Natural History Museum & La Brea Tarpits and several other museums are located off Wilshire Boulevard between Fairfax and Curson Avenues.

Go here for a Google Map I’ve made of the Metro Red line route, Museum Row and the following destinations.

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