Thursday, July 14, 2011

LA’s Stealth Bike Plan

LA’s Bike Plan is of such importance to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa that on July 1, 2011 he issued Mayoral Directive #20 and instructed LA’s departmental leadership to make the Bike Plan a priority.

Little did he know, the Bike Plan that was approved earlier this year was nowhere to be found.

And then, quietly and without any fanfare, the Bike Plan appeared on July 11, on the City Clerk’s website and on the LA Bike Plan website. No notice, no email, no press conference, no fuss, just a simple and subtle appearance that makes one wonder, why the sleight of hand?

The Bike Plan Implementation Team has been meeting for six months to discuss outreach, priorities, funding, interdepartmental synchronicity and other issues related to the deployment of LA’s Bike Plan, a tough task to accomplish without an actual Bike Plan.

On July 5th, at the July BPIT meeting, I asked about the Bike Plan and when we could expect to see the final version, the one that was approved by City Council and classified as an amendment to the City’s General Plan. The one that included all of the corrections, modifications, changes and additions.

Crickets chirped and staffers made excuses including “It’s at the printers and these things take time.”

A digital document held up at the printer?

It may have been the BPIT debate, perhaps it was the Mayoral Directive #20, we may never know what prompted city staff to quietly replace the old draft version of the Bike Plan with the final official Bike Plan. But it’s out in the open now!

Mayor Villaraigosa has been bragging about LA’s Bike Plan. Take a look at the final version of the Bike Plan and take it to your neighborhood council and work with them on local priorities. Most of all, imagine the day when we can point to the streets and brag about the fact that LA is the City with a Backbone!

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