Should cars be banned on Broadway in downtown L.A.?

By Laura J. Nelson : latimes – excerpt

Banning cars from downtown streets is beginning to catch on in major U.S. cities, with New York and San Francisco moving to free up space for transit vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists.

But the trend hasn’t come to Los Angeles — yet.

A proposal introduced by Los Angeles Councilman Jose Huizar could change that. The councilman asked city officials last week to study the feasibility of a ban on driving and parking along a 1.5-mile stretch of Broadway between 1st and 12th streets…

Broadway was the heart of pre-World War II Los Angeles, and later became the region’s premier shopping destination for Latino families before falling into disrepair at the end of the 20th century.

If the changes were approved, city planners face the challenge of redesigning a street long oriented toward the automobile, while still retaining the energy that families remember, said James Rojas, an urban planner who worked at the May Co. department store on Broadway in high school.

“Broadway is part of the cultural DNA for people whose families have been here for generations,” Rojas said. “You have to find a way to make this major change and still keep the vibrancy, the interest, the activity.”(more)

The push to gentrify“other peoples” neighborhoods continues to spread.