Los Angeles' Mobility Plan 2035 Slapped with Lawsuit

The group, Fix The City, sued the city on September 9 on its visionary plan that emphasizes transit, biking, and walking, claiming the traffic lane reductions will create more air pollution, imperil public safety, and add to traffic congestion.

2 minute read

September 14, 2015, 8:00 AM PDT

By Irvin Dawid


Protected Bike Lane Los Angeles

Medgar Parrish / Flickr

David Zahniser of the Los Angeles Times writes that Fix The City claims that the bold plan to reshape the city's streetscape, with its road diets, bus-only lanes, and protected bike lanes will:

  • "Lead to increased tailpipe emissions as drivers confront fewer car lanes and greater traffic congestion. 
  • "Threaten emergency responders struggling to make their way through traffic."
  • Increase congestion for the public, the vast majority of whom will continue to drive their own vehicles and be delayed by the the increased congestion caused by the plan.
On that last note, they can look to the "city's environmental impact report (which) said the plan's projects would double the percentage of major streets that are heavily congested during the evening rush hour," writes Zahniser.
  • "Nearly 36% of major street segments would be heavily congested in 2035, up from 18% currently, the report said. 
  • "The same analysis found that if the mobility plan were not approved, the number would reach only 22% in 2035."

The group is suing under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), claiming the city's environmental review and public outreach is insufficient, and that it doesn't abide by the city General Plan. Click here [PDF] to view petition.

Fix The City and other groups that have opposed city land use decisions that increased density have won several cases lately, according to Zahniser:

Fix the City's lawsuit amounts to a "battle for the future of Los Angeles," writes Dennis Romero of L.A. Weekly. "One month ago the L.A. City Council voted to adopt a visionary plan that would guide the transformation of the city from a car-crazed metropolis to one much more dependent on bikes, trains, buses and your feet."

The plan is the new blueprint for L.A.'s so-called Third Wave of growth in which the city is repopulating its core and focusing on more vertical, dense, public transportation–friendly housing and retail

Romero adds that the group "seeks to halt implementation of the plan until it's made consistent with the General Plan and its requirements for public feedback."

Wednesday, September 9, 2015 in Los Angeles Times

Aerial view of homes on green hillsides in Daly City, California.

Depopulation Patterns Get Weird

A recent ranking of “declining” cities heavily features some of the most expensive cities in the country — including New York City and a half-dozen in the San Francisco Bay Area.

April 10, 2024 - California Planning & Development Report

Aerial view of Oakland, California with bay in background

California Exodus: Population Drops Below 39 Million

Never mind the 40 million that demographers predicted the Golden State would reach by 2018. The state's population dipped below 39 million to 38.965 million last July, according to Census data released in March, the lowest since 2015.

April 11, 2024 - Los Angeles Times

A view straight down LaSalle Street, lined by high-rise buildings with an El line running horizontally over the street.

Chicago to Turn High-Rise Offices into Housing

Four commercial buildings in the Chicago Loop have been approved for redevelopment into housing in a bid to revitalize the city’s downtown post-pandemic.

April 10, 2024 - Chicago Construction News

Walkways and escalator at crowded transit station, with one person walking a bike in foreground.

Best Practices for Outsourcing Transit Operations

Contracting with private sector vendors can help transit agencies improve efficiency and provide better service.

April 14 - Smart Cities Dive

White sign with No Camping - Violators Subject to Arrest and municipal code in red text with snowy trees in background.

Opinion: Unhoused People Need Housing, Not Law Enforcement

The sharp increase in the unhoused population calls for urgent action, not criminalization.

April 14 - The Hill

Google street view of grassy lot next to brick church with elevated freeway on other side in Houston, Texas.

Houston Supportive Housing Development Sparks Debate

Critics say a proposed apartment building would negatively impact the neighborhood’s walkability.

April 12 - Houston Chronicle

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.