Los Angeles is known for its freeways, sure, but trying to make use of those four-lane traffic pileups as a cyclist could prove disastrous. That’s where a proposal from a cycling activism organization called the L.A Bike Working Group comes in. The group recently proposed a “Backbone Bikeway Network“–a system of bikeways that is comparable to a freeway for cyclists.
The Westside Bikeside blog writes:
The Backbone Bikeway Network will get you from Downtown to West L.A., Crenshaw to Valley Village, and LAX to Hollywood. The Backbone doesn’t have neighborhood level detail, because that’s not what a citywide system is for–this system gets you 5 and 10 and 20 miles across town. It goes on major streets–arterials–unlike the proposed Bike Plan, and it gets you within striking distance of major destinations like Dodger Stadium and City Hall.
Once cyclists exit the safety net of the Backbone, they can use regular neighborhood bike lanes. But the Backbone could quickly get cyclists from one major destination to the next.
L.A actually already has a draft bike plan for the next five years, but the Bike Working Group believes that controversy, lack of vision, and funding issues make it unfeasible. The Backbone Bikeway Network, however, has no backing from the government at all. But that doesn’t mean it will never come to fruition–the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has shown that local biking advocacy organizations can make big changes.