Monthly Archives: January 2013

Lots of fun events and important meetings – here’s a list

IN  SEQUENTIAL ORDER: Click titles for more information.

Venice Neighborhood Council meeting

Tuesday, January 22nd give input and help build out the bike network at the southern end of the new Main Street bike lane

Expo Phase 2 Update

Wednesday, January 23rd Community update meeting, SM and WLA/Palms

Pedestrian Action Plan – yes please

Monday, January 28th EVERYONE WALKS ! Lets help create a safer city

SM Spoke meeting, Grand Opening Ocean Park Blvd Complete Green

Saturday February 9th,  Celebrations, BAP 1st year in review & input for the feature, Project launch Michigan Avenue Neighborhood Greenway, Ocean Park Blvd Complete Green Street ,


Saturday, February 23rd Your chance to do it up right… on your bicycle!


 to the Sea! Downtown to the Venice Beach

Sunday, April 21st the route to the sea will use Venice Boulevard from Figueroa to the Venice Beach

and more…..

May is Bike Month

June 1st Santa Monica Festival

13th Annual LA River Ride, Sunday June 9th

Pedestrian Action Plan: Lets help make our streets safer for all users!

 Pedestrain Action Plan

Although we don’t always identify ourselves as pedestrians – unless you have a disability, EVERYONE WALKS !

All of our trips include walking, even if at the start or end of a car, bike, or bus trip. Streets that are safe for pedestrians are safe (or safer) for everyone! In 2011 we approved an award winning Bike Action Plan. It is time to take the next step implementing the LUCE and a safer City of Santa Monica. Will you join us as we start the process to improve our streets and make them safer?

Your input is needed to shape the Pedestrian Action Plan

Monday, January 28th

7:00-9:00 PM

Civic Auditorium East Wing
1855 Main Street Santa Monica, 90401

Please come and participate with us on January 28th to discuss:

  • What Santa Monica can do to improve pedestrian safety and comfort, and encourage people to walk in Santa Monica
  • How walking can create independence for youth and seniors
  • Improving health of residents by walking

RSVP to ensure accurate accommodations or 310.458.8341

Big Blue Bus Lines 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, and 9 serve the Civic Center.
Bike and car parking will be available.

Can’t make it to the meeting but still want to participate? Want more information? This is a really cool crowd source site where you can give input and get info – visit

Ped Plan Meeting Jan 2013

Venice NC Meeting: More Venice Area Bike Lanes?

The Venice Neighbor Council will be considering bike lanes and back-in angled parking along Venice Way, Grand Avenue, Market Street and Windward Avenue. Those streets that are currently 4 lanes would get road diets to make room for bikes and additional parking. We join LACBC to help build out the bike network at the southern end of the new Main Street bike lanes. We hope folks will show up and express their support for the project.

Date:       Tuesday, January 22nd
Time:       7:00pm to 9:00pm
Where:    Westminster Elementary School Auditorium, 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice (map)

Bike lanes on Main Street from Navy to Windward Circle, extended the Santa Monica bike lanes and road diet into Venice.

CicLAvia to the Sea is happening!! April 21, 2013

********** It’s Official!! **********


to the SEA,

Sunday April 21, 2013

CicLAvia from Downtown LA to Venice Beach!

Save the date, Mark your calendars, Plan your vacations (in LA) because CicLAvia is coming to the Beach!

The April 21st CicLAvia route to the sea will use Venice Boulevard from Figueroa to the Beach from 8 am to 3 pm (eastbound auto traffic will be allowed from Abbot Kinney to Crenshaw).
Santa Monica Spoke and our partners are planning lots of fun stuff around this event, with feeder rides (as usual) and LOTS more fun for the whole family.  We will have updates, information and opportunities to volunteer and help us make this the best CicLAvia ever! (until the next one)
CicLAvia will be celebrated three times in 2013, unveiling two new routes in the upcoming year.
——April 21st CicLavia will go from downtown Los Angeles to Venice Beach
——June 23rdCicLAvia will go from downtown Los Angeles to Fairfax along Wilshire Boulevard
——October 6th CicLAvia will be centered in Downtown with routes extending to Boyle Heights, Chinatown, Expostion Park and Westlake.
I don’t know about you – but WE ARE EXCITED!!!!

CicLAvia is recognized as one of the city’s most innovative initiatives – It’s a large-scale, public celebration that has come to symbolize Los Angeles’ civic, cultural, and environmental resurgence.  With more than 100,000 participants each time, CicLAvia is one of the nation’s most inclusive urban events. And this next one will make it to Venice Beach!
CicLAvia is Los Angeles’ adaptation of ciclovía, a phenomenon that began more than 35 years ago in Bogotá, Colombia, where every Sunday 80 miles of streets become closed to car traffic with the goals of reducing pollution and encouraging a healthy lifestyle.
To get more information, you can visit the CicLAvia web page or become a fan on Facebook to receive weekly posts.

About CicLAvia:  CicLAvia is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting public health, active green transportation, public space, economic development, and community building through car-free public events. With the full support of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Metro, the Los Angeles City Council, Police Department, Fire Department, Department of Transportation, the Department of Public Works, the Department of Water and Power, the Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, CicLAvia is an innovative model for creating new public space and enriching civic life.

Expo Line Phase 2 Update Community Meetings


The Exposition Construction Authority invites us to a construction update community meeting for Phase 2 of the Expo Line project. Stakeholders will receive information on upcoming construction activities and timelines.

The format will include a short presentation followed by an Open House session to facilitate dialogue and community input.

Santa Monica meeting will be on January 23rd. For WLA residents or if you cannot make that date see the flyer below. Both presentations are identical.

Planned Agenda for Community Meetings

6:30 – 7:00 pm: Formal Presentation
7:00 – 8:00 pm: Open House Session

Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Crossroads School

Community Room
1715 Olympic Boulevard Santa Monica, CA 90404

Parking available on campus off 18th Street

get more information and sign up for updates at

Expo January 2013

Ocean Park Blvd: More than just beautiful GREEN BIKE LANES

YES! The first “Green Bike Lanes” in Santa Monica are beautiful but Ocean Park Blvd is much more than just green paint.

Ocean Park Blvd from Neilson Way to Lincoln Blvd has been turned into a “Complete Green Street”. Upon completion it will be the longest complete green street in Santa Monica and one of the longest in Southern California.
Let’s start with the obvious, these green lanes are gorgeous!

Ocean Park Blvd Green Street

Click image for photo gallery

However, green lanes alone wouldn’t be enough to transform this once wide auto-centric street if other aspects of the boulevard hadn’t also been addressed, so let’s go back. From what I gather this project has a history that dates back to 1993. Yup that is a LONG time ago. Initiated by the Ocean Park Association (OPA) with lofty goals to improve walkability, calm traffic and make Ocean Park Blvd more of a neighborhood street. Before “Green” or “Complete Streets” started gaining world wide acceptance as a way to improve livability in our cities and neighborhoods this group was already looking at the environment and towards sustainability with an interest in making the street a watershed and a green street. Robert Taylor, a Santa Monica architect, and countless others participated and led the community based effort for many years. What you see going in on Ocean Park Blvd today is the result of that group’s imageable plan that served as the basis for the City’s later efforts as the project moved forward. A plan emerged that not only gained consensus in the community but met Santa Monica’s evolving green streets and storm water retention program goals. These are now prominently joined with multi-modal goals outlined in the Land Use and Circulation Element (LUCE) and the Bicycle Action Plan (adopted Nov 2011). Central to the principals outlined in the LUCE, a “Complete Green Street”  is one that is

Ocean Park Blvd Green Lane pedestrian scaled, landscaped to provide shade and canopy, conserves water and reduces urban run-off, calms traffic, and provides for all modes of travel including pedestrian, bicycle, automobile, and public transit. The project demonstrates the commitment we see in Santa Monica to prioritize non-motorized travel, and increasing the size and biodiversity of the urban forest. While beautiful, the project also plays a key roll by contributing to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and increased carbon dioxide (CO2) capture.
A win win in my book.

The design objective of this “Complete” Green Street is to gain a better performing, enhanced streetscape environment that is pedestrian and bicycle orientated, attractive, green and provides several environmental benefits such as capturing and preventing significant urban run-off from reaching Santa Monica Bay. Incorporating storm water bioswales and underground bioretention chambers along with storm drain improvements the project will capture 55 acres of watershed and significantly reduce unwanted run-off by instead infiltrating it into the ground water. Peter James who was and still is the City’s project manager for the Ocean Park Boulevard Green Street is credited for “really pushing this thing harder than anybody”. Lets look at what ended up in the project (besides the beautiful green lanes).

From the project web site Ocean Park Boulevard Green Street
To achieve these goals the key project elements include:

  • – Wider sidewalks.
  •  – Parkway/storm water biofilter swales and infiltration areas, and a drip irrigation system.
  •  – Over 100 new trees, new landscaping, and medians.
  •  – New marked crosswalks with enhanced overhead flashing beacons.
  •  – More visible, painted bike lanes and traffic striping, new bike racks.
  •  – Street furniture, trash and recycling cans, and 75 pedestrian-scaled light poles.
  •  – Traffic signal improvements.
  •  – Los Amigos Park storm drain improvements.

This project is most certainly a vision for change, it clearly demonstrates how streets designed for automobiles can be transformed into inviting and livable urban landscapes. This Ocean Park Boulevard “Complete” Green Street can serve as a model for future green street projects like Broadway, the Michigan Avenue Neighborhood Greenway and even Lincoln Blvd . For this the City must not only continue its commitment to the principles in the LUCE but also allocate funding needed if we are to re-envision our streets as beautiful public spaces that serve all users,  residents and visitors. We can and must affect the change we want to see.

Construction started in December of 2011 and is quickly reaching completion.
Save the date February 9th, we are currently working with OPA and the City to celebrate this grand street with a ribbon cutting.

Ocean Park Blvd, Green Lanes in progress

Additional Info:

I’ve seen project construction cost listed from 3.8 to 4.4 million with the funding for the project made possible through a combination of resources, including Measure V (the Clean Beaches and Ocean Parcel Tax), Proposition 1B, Proposition C, and the City’s General Fund.

This project has a long list of talents that have contributed:

Mollenhauer Group Fehr and Peers Kimley-Horn and Associates Urban Studio  Lawrence Moss and Associates,
Designed by John Kaliski Architects, City of Santa Monica project manager Peter James

Many thanks to all the visionaries at City of Santa Monica, the Ocean Park Association and the community that really brought this dream to reality.