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Posted by Wes on Thursday, November 6, 2014
On Monday, November 3rd at about 10pm, the Pasadena City Council bid farewell to auto Level of Service (LOS), a transportation metric that is a driving force behind auto-centric street design. In doing so, Pasadena became the first city in Southern California (to our knowledge) to retire LOS as a transportation measure.
With the City in the midst of updating its General Plan for the first time in 10 years, this reform simply makes sense. Auto LOS is not compatible with the City of Pasadena’s Guiding Principles or the Goals and Policies of both the previously ratified, and proposed updated General Plan.
Even the State of California has recognized that LOS is at odds with “…modern state goals such as emission reductions, development of multi-modal transportation network for motor vehicles, infill development, and even optimization of the roadway network for motor vehicles,” and has mandated that cities institute reform by passing SB 743 in September 2013.
LOS prioritizes the speed at which cars move through intersections, and completely ignores multi-modal alternatives. Pasadena’s Guiding Principle #5 (“Pasadena will be a city where people can circulate without cars”), and the entirety of the Mobility Element, require a metric that makes room for additional modes (such as walking, biking, and transit).
What’s more, LOS actively impedes those additional modes, because the mitigation measures that result from an LOS analysis typically increase road speeds and widths, making it easier for people to drive at high speeds, and less convenient and more dangerous for people walking, driving, and riding transit. Staff therefore worked for several years to research and develop a set of new metrics that would better accommodate the diversity of road users in Pasadena - holistic metrics that have now been vetted by an exhaustive review process in a year-long series of community, committee, and commission meetings.
In place of Level of Service, the City has adopted a collection of 5 new transportation metrics that should together make it easier for people to get around using any mode of transportation. 3 metrics look at the ease and safety of walking, biking, and riding transit. 1 metrics look at the ease of driving - not in terms of speed, but in terms of encouraging shorter, more direct routes. And finally, 1 metric incentivizes changes that make it actually easy to walk, bike, or take transit as an alternative to getting in the car.
Pasadena CSC applauds the alignment (finally!) of these proposed Transportation Metrics with Pasadena’s General Plan and Green City Action Plan. Phasing out LOS will help tip the scale towards a healthier, safer and more vibrant Pasadena. Many thanks to all those stakeholders and local residents who as a whole devoted countless hours of their free time to supporting positive change in the City!
Posted by Wes on Tuesday, October 28, 2014
It’s been a long road since PasCSC founders attended the Municipal Services Committee in July 2013 to respectfully ask City leaders and staff to strengthen the City’s draft Bicycle Master Plan by including a network of protected and buffered bicycle lanes. Over that period of time, City staff convened a Bicycle Advisory Committee, commissioned a Protected Bikeway Feasibility Study by KOA Corporation, convened a series of public meetings, and even had a consultant develop a “Level of Traffic Stress Map on Existing and Proposed On-Street Bike Routes.”
The result: the below mapped and listed “priority recommendations” to add to the existing draft bicycle master plan. In red are Class I on-street protected bikeways, purple Class II on-street buffered bikeways, and gold Class III low-traffic “greenways.” Highlights include:
Staff’s recommendations were made public and presented to the City’s Transportation Advisory Commission on October 23rd. In general, the Transportation Commissioners were very supportive of ongoing efforts to improve bicycle access and safety in the City, including staff’s proposed priority strategies. The Commissioners did, however, have 3 specific asks of staff:
Staff plans to solicit further public input on the updated recommendations, and then return with a fully updated Bicycle Master Plan for formal consideration by the Committee and City Council in Spring 2015.
Posted by Blair on Saturday, June 7, 2014
This Sunday, June 15, we’ll be walking and riding to commemorate the one year anniversary of the death of Phillip O’Neill. Phillip was riding his bicycle on Del Mar on June 15, 2013 when he was struck from behind and killed by a motorist. Phillip was an amazing person who had already accomplished a tremendous amount at a young age. We mourn his loss.
We also gather to pledge to work together make our streets safer for people like Phillip and all the pedestrians and bicyclists in Pasadena. We want Pasadena to be a place where this never happens again.
DATE: Sunday, June 15, 2014 SCHEDULE:
RIDE INFORMATION: Ride gathers at Pasadena City Hall, Garfield steps (100 N. Garfield Ave., 91101). Rides to Grant Park via Del Mar (past ghost bike on Del Mar and Wilson). Please bring your bike with lights and in good working condition.
Pasadena City Hall: 100 N. Garfield Ave., 91101
WALK INFORMATION: Walk gathers at Grant Park. Walks west on Blanche Street, south on Wilson, east on Del Mar, and north on Michigan to return to Grant Park. Grant Park: 232 S. Michigan Ave., 91106
TO RSVP and LEARN MORE: https://www.facebook.com/events/664199610324547/