Complete Streets Networks, Part 2: Meet Our Draft Transit-Enhanced Network

We discussed the idea of Complete Streets Networks in our previous post. Today, we will explore our proposal for one of its components, a connected network of streets that are enhanced to advantage performance for transit – the “Transit-Enhanced Network.”

LA Mobility Element Transit Enhanced Preview Dec 12

Click on the image for the full Transit-Enhanced Network.

Through our outreach, we heard about several factors that deter Angelenos from using public transit. The most frequent concern was that our transit system simply is not fast enough due to slow travel times, infrequency of service, uncoordinated transfers, and lack of direct access to destinations or transit stations. Other outreach participants noted that using transit was often difficult to navigate and could be more expensive than driving and parking.

LA Mobility Element Arterial Network Oct 12

Our city has over 1,300 miles of arterials, all optimized for vehicle movement.

The Transit-Enhanced Network, as proposed, consists of 230 miles of arterial streets that collectively will improve the performance and reliability of existing and future bus service. Improvements along these streets—such as infrastructure, signal timing, or stop enhancements—aim to provide reliable, safe, and convenient transit service. Enhancements also aim to increase transit ridership, reduce single-occupancy vehicle trips, and integrate transit infrastructure investments with the identity of the surrounding street. The transit technology on these streets would primarily be high-capacity buses. Bus service would be improved through the following:

1. Right-of-way infrastructure improvements: Transit-Enhanced Network streets may receive treatments within the right-of-way to allow for exclusive traveling space for high-capacity bus service. However, the type of considerations, such as peak hour or full-time lanes, or median or curb-side, will be determined upon further community outreach and analysis.

2. Signal timing infrastructure improvements: Transit-Enhanced Network streets may also receive signal timing features that benefit high-capacity bus performance: signal prioritization, signal pre-emption and queue jumps.

3. Stop enhancements: Bus stops along the Transit-Enhanced Network may receive the following enhancements to improve the transit experience for system users: Off-board fare collection, bulbouts for boarding ease, wider sidewalks, shade, bicycle parking, shelters and benches.

We should note that improving transit service in the City requires the ongoing coordination between the City, Metro and other municipal transit operators. We are coordinating with Metro as we develop our networks, and municipal operators from Culver City Transit, Big Blue Bus, and Foothill Transit have been brought into the conversation as well. Ultimately, because the City owns the roadway and sidewalks used by buses and their patrons, the right-of-way is the responsibility of the City. In this way, the City has a big role in improving transit service by changing the way our streets are used.

CANDIDATE STREET SELECTION

The streets within the Transit-Enhanced Network were selected by evaluating existing transit services across the City. The initial criteria included:

• Ridership load
• Presence of Rapid service today
• Rapid service headways in the peak hour
• Presence of evening service.

We also analyzed demographic and land use information along with major destinations in a heat map, using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software. The attached map shows that analysis – the “hotter” the map, the more likelihood that there is a presence of factors that would benefit from enhanced transit service.

LA Mobility Element Transit Suitability Dec 12

The “hotter” the map, the more transit suitable.

Using the information from the heat map, the analysis of existing services, and comments received through the public outreach, we identified the candidate streets for the proposed Transit-Enhanced Network. The level of transit enhancements that will be implemented for each street will vary, and we’re relying on you to tell us what type of improvements, if any, these candidate streets should have. It is neither feasible nor practical to put a full bus-only lane on every street of the network; however, by strategically implementing different transit improvements on different streets, we can build a transit network that is comprehensive and efficient as a whole.

The transit enhancements that are appropriate for these candidate streets could vary among type of service, infrastructure, station/stop design, information, safety and interconnectivity.  We’ve put together sample packages of “moderate” and “comprehensive” enhancements for these streets (adapted from the ITDP “BRT Standard” Report). A glossary of Complete Streets terms is available here. Let us know what enhancements package, if any, should be made to these candidate streets on our online town hall here. If your favorite street is not on this list, tell us in the comment section as well.

Sample Moderate Enhancements
Mixed flow curb adjacent lane
Less than 8 minute peak hour frequency (all routes on street combined)
Late night and weekend service
Signal priority and queue jumps
Shade, benches, lighting and shelters beyond existing standard
Real time passenger information
Intermodal connections (bike and car share, taxis and local circulators)
Safe pedestrian and universal access
Secure long-term and short-term bike parking

Sample Comprehensive Enhancements (differences in bold)
Two-way center running or curb adjacent exclusive corridor
Off-board fare collection
Less than 3 minute peak hour frequency (all routes on streets combined)
Late night and weekend service
Signal priority, queue jumps and turn prohibitions
Level boarding
Shade, benches, lighting and shelters beyond existing standard
Multiple-door boarding
Real time passenger information
Intermodal connections (bike and car share, taxis and local circulators)
Safe pedestrian and universal access
Secure long-term and short-term bike parking

Here’s the complete list of streets we want you to consider. If a street has more robust facilities planned for it than today, such as Wilshire or Van Nuys, we want you to consider enhancements beyond what’s already planned. Click here for information regarding how each line fared in our analysis. Launch a map of the networks here.

Alvarado St/Hoover St (Sunset Blvd to Venice Blvd)
Broadway (near Chinatown Cornfield Park to I-105 Green Line Station)
Crenshaw Blvd (Wilshire Blvd to Florence Ave)
Fairfax Ave (Hollywood Blvd to La Cienega Blvd)
Florence Ave (West Blvd to to Metro Blue Line)
Hollywood Blvd (Fairfax Ave to Sunset Blvd)
La Brea Ave (Hollywood Blvd to Rodeo Rd)
La Cienega Blvd (Santa Monica Blvd to Expo Line Station)
Lincoln Blvd (City of Santa Monica Limits to Sepulveda Blvd)
Martin Luther King Jr Blvd (Rodeo Rd to Central Ave)
Pico Blvd (City of Santa Monica Limits to San Vicente Blvd)
Reseda Blvd (Ventura Blvd to Nordhoff St)
Roscoe Blvd (Topanga Canyon Blvd to Van Nuys Blvd)
Santa Monica Blvd/Sunset Blvd/Cesar Chavez Ave (Santa Monica border to Mission Rd)
Sepulveda Blvd – Valley (Rinaldi St to Ventura Blvd)
Sepulveda Blvd – West LA (Sunset Blvd to Lincoln Blvd)
Seventh St (Vermont Ave to Soto St)
Slauson Ave (Crenshaw Blvd to the Metro Blue Line)
Third St (La Cienega Blvd to Broadway)
Van Nuys Blvd (North of Foothill Blvd to Ventura Blvd)
Venice Blvd (Lincoln Blvd to Broadway)
Ventura Blvd (Lankershim Blvd to Topanga Canyon Blvd)
Vermont Ave (Los Feliz Blvd to Vermont Green Line Station)
Vernon Ave (Crenshaw Blvd to Blue Line Station)
Western Ave (Santa Monica Blvd to Florence Ave)
Westwood Blvd (UCLA to Expo Station)
Wilshire Blvd (City of Santa Monica border to Valencia St)

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4 Responses to Complete Streets Networks, Part 2: Meet Our Draft Transit-Enhanced Network

  1. Pingback: Calling All Transit Users: LA/2B Needs Your Feedback (That Means YOU, South L.A.) | Streetsblog Los Angeles

  2. Pingback: Complete Streets Networks, Part 4: Meet Our Draft Bicycle-Enhanced Network | LA/2B

  3. Pingback: Task Force Meeting Update | LA/2B

  4. keaswaran says:

    The most used buses definitely need as much enhancement as they can get. Those would probably be Vermont, and Wilshire. There also need to be some further north-south connections and east-west connections through Hollywood. I would probably aim for Fairfax as the other north-south route, and Santa Monica as the other major east-west route, but it would be nice to have Hollywood Blvd enhanced, so that the 780 can have great service on an even larger part of its length.

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