Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Dare to be great (active transportation): Los Angeles edition

ciclavia, los angeles
Photo: Genaro Molina, Los Angeles Times / April 10, 2012 ) Riders make their way east down 7th Street near MacArthur Park during the 4th Annual CicLAvia on April 16, 2012. Inspired by Ciclovia, the original weekly street closure event in Bogota, Columbia, CicLAvia opens LA streets to bicyclists and pedestrians, creating a temporary web of public space. .

For years I've "critical analysis-ed" (some people consider it "criticism" and negative) DC's rather timid attempts to copy the Bogota Ciclovia program of closing off streets to the car on the weekend, in favor of activities favoring walking, cycling, and health/wellness generally. Many communities in North America have developed such events, including Baltimore, New York City, and Los Angeles.

See the past blog entry, "Speaking of Sunday Streets."

Apparently, about the best we've done is a couple hundred people at the event that has been held in Fort Dupont.

Yesterday, CicLAvia in Los Angeles had about 100,000 attendees! See "CicLAvia draws some 100,000 cyclists, skaters, pedestrians:
The car-free event, closing 10 miles of streets in downtown Los Angeles and beyond, brings people outdoors to explore different neighborhoods and enjoy the spirit of a citywide block party
" from the Los Angeles Times.

That's 100,000 people!

500 times greater than DC's results.

That's huge.

In a conversation a few weeks ago with the lead bicycle planner for the LA MTA, she mentioned that CicLAvia is a big event for the transit agency, because people--with bikes and without--use the transit system to get to downtown for the event, and that CicLAvia has become an important event in terms of marketing transit.\

Another way to leverage such events.
CicLAvia logo

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