pedestrian planning

Inglewood First/Last Mile Plan Adopted by Metro Board

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After a year-long planning and design effort, Here LA is excited to announce that the Inglewood First/Last Mile Plan was adopted last night at the Metro Board meeting with a special shout out for the Plan from Inglewood Mayor James Butts. The Plan is a joint effort between Metro and the City of Inglewood and lays out first/last mile streetscape design improvements around five stations in and adjacent to the City. Here LA led a team of consultants for the Plan.

The Inglewood First/Last Mile Plan is LA County’s first first/last mile project that has received committed implementation funding from a City partner (City of Inglewood).

Read more about the project here

Volunteers Needed for a Walk Audit around Future Purple Line Stations

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First / Last Mile planning for the Purple Line Extension has begun for the Wilshire/Rodeo, Century City/Constellation, Westwood/UCLA and VA Hospital rail stations. We invite you to participate in a Walk Audit, which is part of Metro’s First / Last Mile program to develop plans and implement strategies to ensure safe, accessible, and pleasant trips to and from transit for all riders. A Walk Audit is an in-the-field analysis of the streets surrounding a transit station.

Here LA will lead the walk audits on the days specified, training auditors in the field about best practices for auditors and how to use the mobile App that we helped to develop. We will take all of the information from the audits and compile results into a proposed set of streetscape projects and designs.

Hope you can join us!

Saturday, January 12th: 10:00am – 12:00pm  
Wilshire/Rodeo Station & Century City/Constellation Station                            

Saturday, January 12th: 2:00pm – 4:00pm  
Westwood/UCLA Station & VA Hospital Station

Monday, January 14th: 10:00am – 12:00pm  
Westwood/UCLA Station & VA Hospital Station

Monday, January 14th: 2:00pm – 4:00pm  
Wilshire/Rodeo Station & Century City/Constellation Station

Listening to Each Other: The Long Beach Safe Streets Story Bench

Coming Soon to your Neighborhood: the Safe Streets Long Beach Story Bench!

Do you have a story about how traffic violence or street conditions have impacted your life or the life of someone you know? Please come and share your story at the Story Bench. You will be able to record your story and make a pledge to ensure safer streets in Long Beach. Your stories will inform the City’s Safe Streets Action Plan. The Story Bench has been roaming around Long Beach and will continue to do so, through November 2018. Check out the Safe Streets website to learn more. Can't attend a Story Bench date? Go here to record your story and send it directly to the Safe Streets team.

Here LA designed the Story Bench, as part of the Safe Streets project. The goal is to gather stories to personalize traffic violence and put a human face on the problem.

We are Too Accepting of LA's Hostile Urbanism

Photo of Vernon by: Dave Bullock, June Gloom Series 

In LA and in so many cities across the country we've grown too used to hostile forms of urbanism that make it unpleasant to walk, bicycle, and generally hang out outside.  'Hostile urbanism' refers to streetscaping elements or design moves in the public realm that are generally unfriendly to the human being. As an example, think about what it's like to walk next to a freeway edge or through an underpass with chain link on all sides and no light.  Think about the noise and smells that we've gotten used to, as we walk along the edge of a 10 lane arterial street.  Good design, thoughtful urban design needs to be prioritized and needs to be funded to avoid these mistakes, these inhumane moments all around our city. It's a matter of respect - respect for the human, respect for our city, respect for ourselves. (Picture: Flickr Oatsy 40)

Read about Hostile Urbanism here, in a recent article from LAist, with insights from Here LA's Amber Hawkes.

Getting People to Parks on Transit

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This week, Here LA kicks off the Transit to Parks Strategic Plan for LA Metro.  The physical and psychological benefits of urban parks are well documented.  Benefits range from reduction in obesity, depression, and air quality-related health issues, to support for healthy brain development and overall healthy living.  But for so many people living in the LA region, accessing a park is not easy.  Most of our neighborhoods aren't built around a local park; we can't walk out of our front doors and bike or walk to meet our friends for a pick-up game at a nearby basketball court or the like.  Fewer than one-third of Los Angeles children live within walking distance of a park or playground. 

The Transit to Parks Plan investigates how we, as a region, can get better access to parkland and open space areas, including the 75 miles of LA County coastline.  Solutions will likely include a full range of access improvements, like public shuttles, bike lanes, greenways, programmatic incentives, creative partnerships, non-traditional or shared ride possibilities, and others.  The focus will be on providing solutions for car-less, transit-dependent Angelenos and on getting people to the specific types of parks that they want to explore. 

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Map from the recent LA County Park Needs Assessment. 

Glendale Speaks: Turning Community Feedback into Art

This past week, Here LA installed a temporary art piece that illustrated a year's worth of feedback from community workshops in the City of Glendale, as part of the City's Pedestrian Plan.   Since 2016, the design and planning team has been speaking with people who live, work, and play in Glendale about what it's like to walk in the City.  Each triangle in the community mural represents one person's answer to the question, "What would make you walk more in Glendale?" 

Each color is a specific response. You can see frequency and patterns of response and read the community sentiment through color.  Blue tones indicated safety-related responses - people who said they'd walk more if they felt safer walking, or if vehicles would slow down, for example.  Pink indicates an accessibility-related reason (more space on the sidewalks or more destinations within walking distance) and green/yellow tones indicate aesthetics and comfort issues (better lighting, more shade, more people out walking, or better sidewalk condition).

The temporary mural will be up for a little while in its current home in the plaza in front of the Museum of Neon Art on Brand in Glendale and then will be roving around to various sites around the City.  

Join theconversation and check out the evolving Pedestrian Plan!

See you at the California American Planning Association (APA) Conference this weekend!

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Here LA will be at the California APA conference, September 23 - 26 in Sacramento.  Come say hi at our panel as Here LA's Amber Hawkes, AICP talks about creative open space and parks planning strategies:

"Lean, Green, Park Planning Machine: Strategies for More Equitable Parks and Open Spaces"

How can cities equitably plan for parks and park systems that serve the needs of all residents? This session will explore ways in which park planning professionals, representing a diversity of expertise, have aligned community needs and desires with innovative funding and design strategies to achieve more impactful open spaces.

Moderator: Connie Chung, Director, HR&A Advisors, Inc.

Speakers: Eduardo Santana, Executive Director, Pershing Square Renew; Pauline Louie, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco; Amber Hawkes, AICP, Co-Director, Here Design Studio (Here LA); Scott Jordan, ASLA, Principal, Civitas, Inc.  CM | 1.5

 

 

Blue Line Summer Events Are Coming...

Be sure to join us on August 6th for a pop-up event for the Metro Blue Line First/Last Mile Summer Series! The pop-up event will include a community "Bike to the Beach" coupled with an interactive area for feedback and ideas. Here LA will be there with a kit of Blue Line temporary street furniture, talking about the First/Last Mile.  Music, food, and giveaways too!

The Bike to the Beach event is part of a series of events, happening in August and September along the Blue Line, aimed at getting feedback about what sorts of walking and biking improvements would be best for the areas surrounding the Blue Line, from Downtown Los Angeles, to Downtown Long Beach.

Can't make it to the Long Beach Event? August 3rd, 6pm - 9pm, the First/Last Mile Summer Series will be at the Parks After Dark, at Roosevelt Park, right near the Florence Blue Line Station.

See you there!

Two Awards for Here LA and the City of Santa Monica

Here LA is proud to accept two new awards along with the City of Santa Monica for the Creative Crosswalks Pilot Project: the 2017 APA LA Award of Excellence for Urban Design and the 2017 Westside Urban Forum Award of Merit for Public Open Space.

The project is a precedent setter in the region, state, and nation.  Catch up with the story of “Embrace” here.

The success of the project is due to strong collaboration and bold ideas from the City of Santa Monica, the project team, and the engaged Santa Monica community. 

See the full list of APA LA Awards and join us at the Gala on June 22nd.

Also: Join us at the Westside Urban Forum Awards Luncheon on June 9th.

West Hollywood's Pedestrian & Bicycle Mobility Plan Approved by City Council

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This week, the West Hollywood City Council approved the Pedestrian and Bicycle Mobility Plan, which Here LA has been working on for the past year.  The Plan is organized around the principle of a “Complete Network.”  Given the dense urban context of West Hollywood, not all streets can serve all modes of transit - like buses, walking, cycling.  The Plan achieves a Complete Network, prioritizing some streets for certain modes and other streets for other modes. This means that no matter what mode of travel you choose, there will be safe and comfortable options for you in West Hollywood.

Congratulations to the City of WeHo!

SAMO's MANGo Project is Moving Along

Come out for the Community Forum tomorrow, Monday, January 9th, between 6:30PM – 8:00PM - to give your input about the next phase of the MANGo (neighborhood greenway) project on Michigan Avenue in Santa Monica.  The project is transforming a residential corridor into a walkable, bikeable, and beautiful green street.

Here designers Amber and Shannon oversaw the initial planning phases of the project in 2014, which included conceptual design, a pilot installation along the corridor, and a community festival that drew hundreds.  In 2015 the first phase of the project was constructed - a series of traffic circles, as envisioned and tested in the pilot.  Now regarding the eastern end of the route, the Forum will discuss the planned improvements near the Edison Language Academy.

See more information and Forum location here

 

Santa Monica Crosswalks Art getting Installed This Week!

This morning, two of the three Here LA designed art crosswalks in Santa Monica - at Ocean and Broadway - were unveiled after an all-night install by the awesome install team! The final full-field art crosswalk will be painted tonight 9pm - 6am, so look out for the new colors at Arizona and 2nd tomorrow morning.  The crosswalks pilot is part of the City's Pedestrian Action Plan and Vision Zero goals adopted earlier this year. The crosswalks will be in place for up to 12 months.

Join us for the ribbon cutting opening ceremony, Wednesday 9am during the Santa Monica Farmers Market, at 2nd and Arizona.

The colorful hands at 2nd and Arizona are a welcoming embrace, a message of inclusion, openness, and hope, welcoming people to the Santa Monica beach community - a hand shake, a physical touch, the barter and trade of fresh vegetables, fruit, and flowers at the Farmers Market. 

The sunsets at Ocean and Broadway are an ode to the City's orientation to the west, looking out high over the Pacific Ocean. They also nod to the Camera Obscura adjacent to the crosswalks with their simplified, almost projected horizontal landscape drawn on the street. Be sure to take a look at the crosswalk art on Ocean from the Camera Obscura itself!

All of the crosswalks celebrate the City and the Downtown, while also raising the visibility of pedestrian-ism and the walking culture in Santa Monica, encouraging people to slow down and take a look.  

Having Fun Walking in Glendale

Check out our new temporary pedestrian wayfinding signage around Glendale, which were installed this weekend.  We designed the signs as part of the City of Glendale's Citywide Pedestrian Plan. They help point people to destinations around Glendale and also provide facts and ideas about walking.  The idea is to improve the walking experience around town and to encourage people to provide input to the planning process. #GlendaleWalks and GlendaleWalks.com

LA Times Article


See Here LA's Amber Hawkes talk to My Glendale TV about the project, below:

Re-imagining 10th Street in Long Beach

This week Here Design is 're-imagining 10th Street' in Long Beach as part of the the 2nd Council District's push to improve some of the main corridors in the District.  The District has earmarked funding for a pilot project to test out some of the ideas in the Plan, which is expected to be complete in July, 2016.  So far we are looking at temporary solutions like "bus stop-lets" or temporary sidewalk extensions at bus stops, artful crosswalks, and a community-initiated utility pole painting project to beautify the north side of the street.