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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.
September 14, 2015, 8am PDT | Irvin Dawid
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Medgar Parrish

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."

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Published on Wednesday, September 9, 2015 in Los Angeles Times
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