LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Nobody walks in L.A., as the saying goes, but city officials are trying to make it easier to ride a bike through the City of Angels.
Two-way bicycle lanes opened in downtown Los Angeles for the first time Monday along North Spring Street, giving bicyclists a place to safely avoid being hit by a car without taking up the sidewalk from pedestrians.
“As long as they keep continuing to increase the safety and efficacy of bike infrastructure, I’m sure you’ll see a lot more individuals getting out of their cars and engaging in the community,” bicyclist Joey Skeate said.
The newly minted bike lanes are part of the $2.3 million Main And Spring Forward Project, which is slated to improve intersections and crossings for pedestrians, create protected bicycle lanes, and reduce the possibility of bus-bicycle crashes, while still increasing bus efficiency.
Still, old habits die hard, and downtown residents like Anna Soto has her misgivings about how safe the new lanes will be for bicyclists.
“I saw one the other day, a car came in back of him and swiped him off,” Soto said as she walked her dog. “He fell onto the curb, and he was like, ‘hey, didn’t you see me?’ They should put a barrier at the end to prevent a car from coming in.”
Skeate, who ditched his car years ago, says mutual respect on the road would go a long way to help keep everyone safe.
“People’s perception of how we move in the city needs to change,” he said.