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Los Angeles Gears Up for its First Green Bike Lanes

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The Los Angeles Department of Transportation announced this month that it will be implementing a green bike lane project in Los Angeles to help motorists avoid bicyclists and increase safety.

The city's first green striped lane will be installed along the 1.6-mile bike lane on 1st Street between Boyle Ave. and Lorena St. in Boyle Heights. The pilot project will mirror models from other cities such as Portland, New York and Long Beach.

Transportation department officials said that the effort is relatively cheap to implement, and the green colored pavement used to identify bike lanes will be skid- and slip-resistant, according to the Los Angeles Times.

"They're very innovative," said Allison Mannos of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition. "It raises a lot of attention to the part of the street cyclists are in."

While green bike lanes have gone on without a hitch in Long Beach and Portland, residents in New York last year complained about the removal of street parking spaces while business owners had new difficulties getting to truck deliveries.

The New York Transportation Department responded to such criticism by pointing out that the bike lanes increased pedestrian safety and decreased the amount of fatal crashes on the streets.

Proponents in Los Angeles support the belief that not only will bicyclists feel safer in the green lanes, but it will help increase motorists awareness of bicycles in the area.

"More than half-a-million people in L.A. get around without a car so it's important that our roads are safe for everyone," said Joe Linton from CicLAvia.

A date has not yet been set to begin the project.

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Aja Dang is a graduate student at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, which has partnered with KCET-TV to produce this blog about policy in Los Angeles.

The photo used on this post is by Flickr user urbanbicyclist. It was used under a Creative Commons License

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