Mayor Garcetti unrolled his "Great Streets" program today to improve neighborhoods that may have been great in the past but have "lost their swagger" as the city has increasingly prioritized automobile traffic. Garcetti told the audience at the Urban Land Institute's TOD (transit-oriented development) Summit that during his campaign he became convinced that what people are looking for the most in Los Angeles is community, and that he wants to create great streets that can anchor communities, "with places to eat, places to shop, places to downward dog. Places accessible by car, bike, foot, and transit."

He noted that LA was built around local shopping and services on a people-oriented scale but that as soon as we began building for the automobile "pedestrians were cut off from storefronts, separated by acres of parking lots. And neighborhoods were separated by freeways." He said streets make up 13% of the land in our city, totaling 60 square miles -- roughly the size of St. Louis -- which makes streets our largest open space resource.

He promised a list of candidate streets across the city in 90 days, and said the city would be "moving dirt along these corridors" in 18 months. And he announced a new "People Street" program that gives neighborhood groups the opportunity to apply for new parklets, plazas and bike corrals -- like the "polka dot plaza" in Silver Lake.

LA is about to get more walk, bike and transit-oriented! And for that the mayor got a standing ovation!

Read the speech here.

Donate Volunteer Find an Event


get updates