Wednesday, November 20, 2019 the South Pasadena City Council will vote on a $200,000+ contract to install new bicycle parking citywide. The good news is this grant-funded project -- first awarded to the City back in 2012 -- is finally moving forward after years of extensions and delays. The not so good news is that several important public requests are not in the latest implementation plan. These include focusing new bicycle parking in the downtown business districts (rather than parks or recreational trails with limited demand for bike parking) and making inverted U-style racks the program default (rather than the less functional "hitch" style racks pictured above).
In advance of the meeting City staff has issued an updated Staff Report, which includes photographs of every proposed location for new bike parking in the City. In a nutshell, staff is recommending that the City move forward with the grant as originally envisioned, utilizing 100 Hitch-style racks (rather than inverted-U racks) and placing most bicycle parking outside of the City’s central business districts.
To help sift through all this information, ActiveSGV staff put together a Google Map of the locations where the City currently proposes bike parking be installed (green icons), where bike parking currently exists (orange icons), and where bike parking was requested by the public over the past few years (purple icons). Click here to view the map.
Project Recommendations1. Remove a minimum of (25) proposed bike racks from park and other locations with limited demand and/or existing, underutilized bicycle parking. Staff’s current plan proposes installing 75% of new bike parking in areas that do not directly serve local businesses (map). ActiveSGV recommends that at least 50% of new bike parking be placed adjacent to businesses, given strong community preference for bike parking in these areas.
4. Install a “Cycle Corral” on Mission Street near the Gold Line. Multiple businesses on the block of Mission Street between Meridian and Diamond have requested but not received bicycle parking over the past two years, including Jones Coffee, Munch Company, Oculus Optometry, Mission Ten Eleven, and Rosebuds and Rosestuds. Since sidewalk space is limited, we strongly recommend converting red curb and/or a space of street parking to a bicycle parking corral.
5. Purchase generic, easier-to-use “Hitch” racks in a higher-visibility color, if there is no way to purchase inverted-U racks. While far less accessible for users, a Hitch rack without a complex design in the center would be easier to lock to. It would also cost an estimated $100-$200 less per unit to fabricate, saving the City limited grant funds. We recommend the use of a brighter, city-consistent color such as orange to make it easier to identify new bicycle parking.
Wednesday’s meeting may be the final opportunity to encourage the City to address these issues. As always, public input is critical. There are two primary ways you can weigh in.
1) GREATEST IMPACT: Attend the meeting Wednesday 11/20 and provide public comment directly. There are only two Action/Discussion items currently on the City’s agenda, Item #21 - Adoption of the City Green Action Plan and Item #22 - Bicycle Parking. We are hopeful the item will be discussed by 8:30pm.
2) ALSO HELPFUL: Email the South Pasadena City Council and let them know you support secure, convenient, and accessible bicycle parking. Short, personal emails are generally most effective. A sample email can be found below. Emails should be sent to the City Council:
Sample Email (please personalize)
Dear Members of the South Pasadena City Council,
As a local [resident/stakeholder/shopper] who supports a more sustainable, multimodal South Pasadena, I am writing today to encourage the City to improve the latest draft proposal for citywide bicycle parking.
Downtown South Pasadena continues to lack bicycle parking, an overlooked barrier to using a bicycle or scooter as a means of healthy, active mobility for short trips around town. The City’s current proposal for new bicycle parking would only partially address this issue by focusing most new bicycle parking in parks and other sites not conveniently located by businesses.
This oversight could be easily addressed by shifting some proposed bike parking from areas where ample parking already exists -- such as Garfield Park and the Arroyo Seco Trail -- to the City’s key downtown corridors, especially Fair Oaks Avenue and Mission Street.
ActiveSGV Comment Letters
Metro Los Angeles is (still) studying options for a new, high-quality, "Bus Rapid Transit" line connecting the communities of Pasadena, EagleRock, Glendale, Burbank, and North Hollywood.
Implementation of the new service is fully-funded and planned to be high-frequency (i.e. buses at least every 10 minutes). You can see a video about the project below and map of potential route options above.
Unlike the Metro 501 bus service, which largely traverses the 134 freeway (and misses many destinations along the corridor), the proposed project would mainly run along City streets in order to connect each community's downtown district.
At this stage in the process public input and support is critical if the new line is to be convenient and comfortable.
HOW CAN YOU PARTICIPATE?
1) ATTEND A MEETING and provide comment in person! Meetings include a presentation by staff and opportunities to share feedback in person or via comment card. You may attend any meeting to provide comment on the entire project. Register here.
2) SUBMIT COMMENTS VIA EMAIL. Your comments can have an impact. A sample email is below for your reference. Just be sure to submit by 11/20!
3) SIGN A PETITION supporting Bus Rapid Transit on Colorado Boulevard
4) SHARE WITH FRIENDS. Amplify your impact by letting others know about this project.
SAMPLE EMAIL (Please personalize)
As someone who shops, dines, and visits communities along the project corridor including [Eagle Rock, Glendale, Burbank, etc], I support the development of high-quality transit service connecting the San Gabriel and San Fernando Valleys.
[Please personalize: why does better transit service matter to you?]
Frequent service (every ten minutes or less), shaded stations, and dedicated bus lanes along city streets are key components to making "Bus Rapid Transit" convenient and comfortable for people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities. The use of all of these components - in tandem - is critical for the proposed line to be successful.
Cities around the United States including Boston, Seattle, and Las Vegas have realized successful BRT projects over the past decade, and witnessed the benefits of better buses firsthand. Many of these cities have also done so at low-cost, trying out bus-only lanes with cones and paint, measuring their impacts, and modifying them as needed. This project is an opportunity for Los Angeles County to learn from others as well as act on its commitment to sustainable mobility, clean air, and public health.
I urge you to give BRT a chance to succeed with convenient service, a great user experience, and dedicated bus lanes on City streets.
Behind every great team is a dedicated and hard working leader who guides and inspires their team to achieve big things. At ActiveSGV, David Diaz, does that! As Executive Director he works every day to continue realizing the Active mission and inspires our team to work the hardest we can to create a more equitable and healthier San Gabriel Valley. As an involved community member and leader, he actively participates in building more resilient communities and is constantly thinking of ways we can better serve our community members. This month, he shares how he got started at ActiveSGV, what he loves most about it and what he's digging these days.
Stay connected with him on Instagram: @daveed_diaz
1. How did you get started working at ActiveSGV?
After failing to show up for my first scheduled interview at Day One (El Monte Nutrition Education and Obesity Prevention Coordinator position) I was fortunate enough to be given a second opportunity to interview by Christy Zamani. This time around I showed up and was fortunate enough to be offered the position! Shout out to Christy Zamani. I really wanted to work at Day One because it aligned with my passion and interests of serving the communities I grew up in, El Monte and South El Monte. I was born in Ensenada, Mexico, however I grew up in El Monte/South El Monte where I made some of my best friends, met my wife, and still live now. While in college I learned about how systemic racism impacts underserved communities, how zip codes determine life expectancies, how displacement and redlining have led to the toxic environments communities of color live in today. During my time at Day One I was able to connect with a lot of great people, including the all volunteer staff of "BikeSGV" Javier Hernandez, Andrew Yip, and Wesley Reutimann. I am fortunate enough to be one of the folks that made the transition from volunteer (since Jan 2014) to full time staff as of April 2018.
2. What do you like most about ActiveSGV?
Purpose and mission driven work. I wake up everyday thankful for the opportunity to make a difference in the SGV. The climate crisis is real, the planet is on fire and we must take action everyday to change the outcome. I firmly believe the work we're doing is making a difference today and for future generations. Other cool perks: - I get to my ride my bike to work everyday - Awesome colleagues - Flexible schedule
3. Favorite and/or memorable ActiveSGV experience?
626 Golden Streets, March 5th, 2017! After years of anticipation, it was great to finally see this event come true. Wes R came up to me and nearly tackled me with joy, it was the best! Post event folks surprised me with a birthday cake too, which was super cool. (Love good surprises**)
4. If a friend from out of town were to visit, which place in the SGV would you take them to and why?
An #Active day in the SGV (pretend it's a Saturday): -8:30am-9:30am: Run/workout at Legg Lake -9:30am-11am: Breakfast at Ajos y Cebollas -11:30am: Visit the only mural in SEM (10930 Central Ave) -12:00pm-4:00pm: Bike tour around the Emerald Necklace (with stops at Burritos La Palma, Progress Brewing, and the Jeff Seymour Family Center). -4:00pm-7:00pm- Rest (Visitors need rest time too) -7:00pm- ? : Gold line station tour starting from Azusa Station toward Union Station
5. What you're listening to/ reading/ watching/ digging right now?
Currently vibing with a few things: Quiet by Susan Cain (Learning about the less known Ambiverts. Google it!), A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway, and the MLS Playoffs (Go LAFC)!
Want to learn more? Check out ActiveSGV's new podcast, ActiveLab