In an effort to increase connectivity and improve the livability of the community, the transportation corridor must be integrated with transportation facilities and acknowledged as a major component of the public realm. The Lincoln Heights transportation corridor to the Gold Line can play an integral role in furthering the urban form of the neighborhood, future development patterns, and a sense of place.
The West Avenue 26 thoroughfare provides an opportunity to enhance multi-modal transportation and increase interconnections, particularly for pedestrians, bicyclists, transit riders, and people with disabilities, while preserving the inherent natural and cultural characteristics, of the neighborhood contributing to the character of neighborhood and business districts. In addition, this thoroughfare also offers the opportunity to balance transportation, community, and environmental needs.
The four-block focus area around the Cypress/Lincoln Gold Line Station looks to improve the pedestrian experience and build from the area's recent patterns of growth as a livable street. Future enhancements look to improve the identity of the neighborhood through continuous streetscape efforts including street tree planting to provide shaded walkway, clearly designated bike lanes, safe crosswalks, and space for both permanent and temporary art/cultural installations.
While West Avenue 26 serves a large volume of traffic connecting north and south through the neighborhood as well as access to Interstate 5 Freeway and the 110 Freeway, it has the capacity to become a livable street as well as continue to serve this capacity as a connector street. Presently, a few instances of life and vibrancy occur in an impromptu manner.
A local food vendor sets up an impromptu roadside grill on Humboldt Street at Ave 26 serving tacos. On the weekend the corner is utilized as a neighborhood "yard sale" selling used household wares. Both of these unplanned uses greatly aid to bringing life to this particular stretch of the street; drawing passerbyers on foot, bike and car furthering the day and night activity, and consequently safety, throughout the week. The identified opportunity areas, and in particular the large site across the Lincoln/Cypress Gold Line Station, could fulfill community resources that do not currently exist, offer employment opportunities accessible by Metro or can provide an opportunity for mixed-use development with residential above community serving retail, food and beverage, professional office, childcare and family health related services.
Extending further north, the connection to Figuerora Street is challenged by the underpass beneath the Gold Line as well as the series of fly-overs interconnecting the freeways, and finally the viaduct/overpass that connects over the Arroyo Seco Streamway and 110 Highway. Heading south, Avenue 26 connects in a five-point intersection with Pasadena Avenue and Daly Street; a geographically significant location for the Eastside community as well as a central node for the Lincoln Heights neighborhood itself. As a whole, the value of improvements made to the entire stretch of Avenue 26 would greatly foster vibrancy within the community and support safer pedestrian movement and a potentially culturally significant experience for the neighborhood.