Living Streets LA applies the principle of “streets safe for all users” to the unparalleled vastness and complexity of Los Angeles. In this ethnically diverse, economically disparate metropolis ruled by the automobile, we take the concept of complete streets several steps further.
A steady, dramatic shift is occurring in the way Americans think about urban life—and the streets and highways that dominate it. We are moving toward cities that are more “livable” and streets that are more human-centered—and “complete.” Complete Streets are designed and engineered to be safe and convenient for everyone—not just drivers, but bicyclists, transit riders, wheelchair users and pedestrians of all ages and abilities.
In just a decade, the idea of complete streets has evolved from a trendy buzzphrase among bicycle activists and progressive planners to an increasingly visible and broad social movement. Transportation planners, street engineers, public health officers and elected officials—with a wide range of activist citizen groups in the vanguard—are talking about how to repurpose our city streets to allow everyone to get around safely and well, even if they’re not traveling by car.
We are concerned not just with creating roadways that fairly and inclusively balance the needs of walkers, bicyclists, transit riders and drivers. Because environmental restoration and economic equity are core values for us, we also are dedicated to revitalizing neglected neighborhoods. Working to transform streets in the City’s urban core into vibrant, inviting and green community spaces is a great place to begin.
Living Streets are designed to:
- Involve local residents in the street design and planning process, using their priorities and needs to bring improvements to specific streets;
- Enhance a neighborhood’s social and economic vitality without inviting “gentrification” and displacement of longtime residents and businesses;
- Improve residents’ health and quality of life: transform their key streets into enjoyable public spaces that are conducive to walking, biking, and social interaction;
- Be inviting: pleasing places, with appealing street furniture, landscaping and public art that reflect the neighborhood’s cultural uniqueness and diversity;
- Help restore our urban ecosystems by adding trees and green space, and incorporating features that capture rainwater and clean urban runoff.