The Three Keys to Building an Effective Transit Network for L.A.

By comparing the city's density, scale, and distribution of employment nodes to other major cities, Kristin Eberhard makes the case for why and how transit can work in big, dense, polycentric Los Angeles.

"LA faces a public transit challenge," says Eberhard. "How to connect a disperse, evenly dense population with multiple jobs centers and residential areas in a seamless way that is competitive with cars? My answer: we can’t just do what other cities do and hope for the best."

She details how L.A.'s structure compares to other transit rich cities, and explains the three key attributes for building an effective public transit system for the city:

  1. We need a grid, not a spiderweb: "LA needs to cover a broad territory fairly evenly so that residents can get not just to a single downtown destination, but pretty much everywhere in the region."
  2. We need better first-mile / last-mile solutions: "Most people walk to transit, so streets need to be walkable, but they also need to be bikable, scooterable, and neighborhood EV-able (speed-limited to 25 mph so that it is only suitable for neighborhood streets) to really give everyone a good option."

  3. We need to have an ecosystem of options: "A combination of carpooling, biking, taking the bus, or driving an EV to a transit hub could vastly improve LA's transportation problems. LA’s solution needs to create an ecosystem where everyone has many options."

Full Story: How can transit work in big, dense, polycentric Los Angeles?

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