BY DAVID ZAHNISER : latimes – excerptTraffic on Masonic, one of SF’s most heavily traveled north-south corridors, is barely moving now. SFMTA wants to slow it down even more by removing traffic lanes and establishing bike paths. Last we heard, they are having problems designing the bike lanes to traverse driveways on the hill.
A Westside-based nonprofit group went to court Wednesday to overturn Los Angeles’ sweeping new 20-year transportation plan, saying officials failed to properly examine its effects on public safety, air pollution and other aspects of city life.
In its lawsuit, the advocacy group Fix the City said Mobility Plan 2035, which calls for the addition of hundreds of miles of new bus- and bike-only lanes, will lead to increased tailpipe emissions as drivers confront fewer car lanes and greater traffic congestion.
he plan, approved by the City Council last month, puts a major emphasis on safety, calling for key streets to be redesigned in ways that rein in traffic speeds. Fix the City contends that public safety would in fact be threatened, with emergency responders struggling to make their way through traffic.
“People don’t really know about this plan, and they’re going to learn the hard way when it comes to their neighborhood,” said Laura Lake, an activist who serves on the group’s board. The plan’s projects will bring “a huge sacrifice in air quality, a huge sacrifice in first-responder times, in lost time from work, lost time from family.”
Lake said the council should put the plan up for a public vote, saying it would easily be defeated…
The city’s environmental impact report said the plan’s projects would double the percentage of major streets that are heavily congested during the evening rush hour. Nearly 36% of major street segments would be heavily congested in 2035, up from 18% currently, the report said. The same analysis found that if the mobility plan were not approved, the number would reach only 22% in 2035… (more)