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Home / News / Politics / City Council moves motions addressing LA River bike path project

City Council moves motions addressing LA River bike path project

by City News Service
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The Los Angeles City Council Friday advanced two separate-but-related motions in an effort to close a $100 million funding gap for a bike path project from the 2007 LA River Revitalization Master Plan.

In a 12-0 vote, council members instructed several city departments to report back with recommendations on how to best proceed with identifying funding and completing the LA Riverway — a continuous off-street multi-use active path along the banks of the river, connecting the headwaters in Canoga Park through downtown and other pathways outside of the city.

Specifically, the motions seek to fund the portion of the project known as the Valley LA Riverway, traversing through Council Districts 2, 3, 4 and 6 — from Vanalden Avenue to Forest Lawn/Zoo Drive.

In a separate vote, the council passed a second motion seeking to address a short-term financial gap, focusing on the western part of the project and the intersection of Forest Lawn and Zoo drives. Another report back will focus on solving a gap traversing the 134 Freeway and improvements off the westbound offramp and Forest Lawn Drive intersection.

The city anticipates working with Caltrans, the Department of Water and Power, and the city of Burbank to finalize that section of the project.

The LA River revitalization plan is aimed at developing more open space, parks, trails, recreation, environmental restoration, riverfront living and commerce, jobs, while also fostering neighborhood identity, economic development, tourism and civic pride, officials said.

Council members Nithya Raman, Bob Blumenfield, Paul Krekorian and Imelda Padilla introduced the motions in 2023 — the Valley LA Riverway will run through their respective areas.

“I just wanted to rise and say how excited I was that this was coming through the council, and how delighted I am to stand with my other Valley LA River colleagues,” Raman said prior to the vote.

She said the motions will help complete “an off-street path for walking, running and biking,” a goal of the city.

“We’ve put together a lot of money to do this,” she added. “Now we have approximately $126 million to put this together, but there are still very real gaps. So this motion(s) really directs us to look for that funding and to complete those gaps.”

In regard to the motion seeking additional funds for the extension project from Forest Lawn to Riverside Drive, she said the project will provide space for equestrian activities on top of use for bicyclists and walkers.

This project will include maintaining a 10-foot minimum width for equestrian segments where feasible, designing any path intersections in a way to slow down people biking, adding protection from freeway noise, visual blight and pollution, as well as buffering and separation of path types.

“If we need to go and work with Caltrans for an easement, this motion will help us get prepared to make that ask,” the councilwoman said. “This is an exciting, details-oriented motion, and both of these together I think can help us do the work that the city needs to the long term planning and finally help us get that beautiful river pathway that everybody can use safely.”

According to city officials, they are aiming for 2028 and 2038, respectively, as goals for completing “essential connectivity” and “full build out” of the Valley LA Riverway.

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