LA Times, KPCC, ABC, NBC & more: BRU victory on Wilshire bus lanes makes a media splash
by Crystal McMillan on Wednesday, June 15, 2011
After six years of campaigning, the Wilshire Boulevard Bus-Only Lanes project took an important step forward, with the Los Angeles City Council voting to approve the project and move it forward.The story was widely covered across LA's print, broadcast, and online media.
LA Times quoted Lead Organizer Sunyoung Yang: "It's a real breakthrough. The city has taken a huge step forward to prioritize transit over single-passenger automobiles."
NBC local news quoted Organizer Crystal McMillan on what the bus-only lanes will mean for regular bus riders who right now sit in gridlock on Wilshire Boulevard.
KABC local news highlighted the story with interviews from bus riders as well as Councilmember Tom LaBonge on the importance of a bus-only lane "on the busiest street west of New York."
LA Weekly celebrated the victory for bus riders in the face of arguments "from stuffy homeowners' associations across the Westside."
Streetsblog quoted Council member Tony Cardenas on the possible truncation of the project: "Anything short of 8.7 mile routes is too much politics"
LA 18 Prime News Korean TV interviews Sunyoung Yang and NRDC's Morgan Wyenn
Korea Daily gave both sides of the Wilshire BRT project
Quick facts about the Wilshire Bus-Only Lanes:
- This project will create the longest dedicated bus lanes on surface streets in Los Angeles, running 7.7 miles from Parkview Street b Macarthur Park to Centinela Avenue where LA meets the City of Santa Monica. It will not run through Beverly Hills or through a one mile stretch from Comstock to Selby in Westwood's "Condo Canyon."
- Wilshire Boulevard is one of the most heavily traveled in the entire country, with 80,000 bus riders daily.
- Bus-only lanes will save bus riders as much as 30 minutes a day - 130 hours per year - in travel time.
- The bus-lanes are predicted to spur 10% of drivers on Wilshire to leave their cars at home and switch to the bus, a reduction of 2,000 cars during rush hour.
- The lanes will produce an annual reduction of 22,000 tons of carbon emissions and 2,500 tons of criteria pollutants annually.
- The lanes will operate only during commute hours - 7-9AM in the morning, 4-7PM in the evening.
- As part of the construction, the streets will be repaved and an additional lane will be built on the West Side from Federal to Barrington close to the I-405 entrance to mitigate traffic impacts.