Scooter Revenue, Empty Streets Allow for Quick Construction of Bike Lane in L.A.

A busy corridor, popular with bike and scooter riders, is gaining a new protected bike lane in Los Angeles.

May 26, 2020, 10:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority

vesperstock / Shutterstock

"With automobile traffic down due to the COVID-19 stay-at-home order, the City of Los Angeles took the opportunity to resurface the stretch of 7th Street between the Financial District and the Historic Core," reports Steven Sharp. "When that fresh pavement is restriped in the coming weeks, it will come with a treat for cyclists."

That treat will come in the form of a new protected bike lane--still a rare sight in Los Angeles. Though the new .6-mile-long protected bike lane will be installed with temporary fixtures like plastic bollards, the street improvements will include other features like bus stop consolidation and a parklet (the latter will be installed in August, according to the article). The bike lane will be made permanent in 2021.

Funding for the project came from the city's dockless mobility pilot program, which was once a promising revenue model for alternative transportation infrastructure. Bird canceled its infrastructure funding program in 2019 and the city of L.A.'s one-year pilot program has exceeded that window of time, but revenue generated by this still relatively new mode of transportation is still paying off.  Sharp notes that the 7th Street corridor sees the highest rates of electric scooter ridership in the city.

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