South Bay Commuters Irate Over L.A. Councilman’s ‘One Lane Madness’ in Playa del Rey

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South Bay commuters looking to avoid the 405 Freeway have long taken an alternate route through Playa del Rey, passing the coastline and the Ballona Wetlands to reach Santa Monica.

Traffic in the Playa del Ray neighborhood
on June 15, 2017, after the city added bike lanes and reduced traffic lanes to remedy complaints about high-speed traffic. (Credit: Christian K. Lee/ Los Angeles Times)

The route is popular – with more than 24,000 vehicles per day – but some residents complained that harried commuters speeding through the neighborhood put pedestrians and children at risk.

The friction came to a head this month, when Los Angeles officials eliminated 9.4 miles of traffic lanes and added 4.3 miles of bike lanes in an effort to reduce collisions.

The restriping led to bumper-to-bumper traffic, sending drive times and tempers soaring. Opponents have drafted an online petition calling on City Councilman Mike Bonin to reverse the “one-lane madness,” as well as a fundraising campaign for a formal appeal to the City Council — and a lawsuit to reverse the project, if it comes to that, organizers say.

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