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LA's Notorious Traffic Would Get Worse With Proposed 'Green' Transportation Overhaul

LOS ANGELES ( — The Los Angeles City Council is trying to get drivers to ditch their cars and take alternative modes of transportation.

The "Mobility Plan 2035" would L.A.'s streets safer for pedestrians and bicyclists and public transportation more efficient for riders.

That includes new protected bike lanes, bus-only lanes and better ways to access bus schedules/alerts through smartphones and signs.

It also paves the way for "green" mobility, such as converting 100 percent of city maintenance vehicles – city fleet vehicles, trash collection trucks and street sweepers – to renewable fuels by 2020. The plan's creators say they want to increase the 'role of low-tech 'green street' solutions to treat and infiltrate stormwater."

Lawmakers hope this long-term solution will positively impact how future generations of Angelenos interact with their streets.

But it may get worse before it gets better. Some critics say creating the infrastructure needed – which includes 300 miles of protected bike lanes and 117 miles of bus-only lanes, and, thus, fewer lanes for cars – is setting the stage for a traffic nightmare.

"Cars are just going to sit there. So labeling it a mobility plan is just not reflective of what the plan actually does," Don Parker, a board member with Fix the City, told the Los Angeles Times.

Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Sherman Way and Van Nuys Boulevard would be some of the major thoroughfares affected, according to the Times. The newspaper says Lankershim, Sunset and Venice boulevards would add bus-only lanes and protected bus lanes.

Connie Llanos, spokeswoman for Mayor Eric Garcetti, who supports plan, told the Times: "A paradigm shift of this kind often causes growing pains. But the long-term benefits outweigh the impacts."

The L.A. Planning Commission approved Mobility Plan 2035 in April. The proposal will be reviewed by the City Council on Aug. 11.


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