downtown los angeles

Buffered Green-Painted Bike Lane Coming Soon to Spring St in Downtown LA

A conceptual rendering of what the protected bike lane down Spring St may look like as the design is being close to finalized with a ground breaking planned for early December 2011 (Photo: DLANC)

Valerie Watson, the At-Large Director of DLANC (Downtown LA Neighborhood Council), who has been heavily involved with making the Historic Core in Downtown LA a much more pedestrian and bike friendly community, sends me this rendering (and more info) of a fully separated bike lane down Spring St that will also be painted green (like those coveted ones in bike-friendly Portland or New York).

With a ground breaking coming as soon as December (as in this year 2011!), the 1.5 mile bike lane will stretch from Cesar Chavez to 9th Street and be 6 feet wide with green paint to mark very clearly for motorists to see, and there will also be a 4-foot stripe buffer zone between the bike lane and car lane for further cyclist protection. Full time loading and parking will be available on the west side of the street next to the bike lane (as you can see in the rendering).

Here are some benefits of having the bike lane down Spring St:

  • Better access to businesses along Spring St by patrons walking, biking, using transit, and driving
  • Full time parking and loading will be added on west side of Spring St
  • Increased crossing safety for pedestrians

The design of this project can still be tweaked and refined by the community’s input and feedback is encouraged.

And even more good news. After further studies, a second phase with another bike lane on Main St (parallel to Spring St) may be implemented from Cesar Chavez to Venice Blvd.

For more information you can contact:

Paul Habib, Planning Deputy
Councilman Jose Huizar, CD14
213-473-7014 |

Marie Rumsey, Senior Deputy
Councilwoman Jan Perry, CD9
213-473-7009 |


  1. This is terrific. Painting the lane green is not only symbolic, but is practical, as the bright color will draw attention to the lane, both from motorists (for safety) and from pedestrians (to encourage use). This is a step in the right direction towards MULTI-modal transport, in which the auto isn’t deemed the pre-eminant mode of transportation (mono-modal transit). Rather, pedestrians, transit-users, & cylcists are given equal or preferred status.

  2. Awesome. Great to see the positive changes we’ve all been asking for

  3. Lawrence says

    Completely agree with Jonathan. This is a great example of multi-modal transport done well. Hopefully this same treatment will be applied to Figueroa which is in desperate need of a road diet and other parts of L.A that are well setup to receive it. I think this will be the first example of these type of bike lanes outside of Long Beach, which is great to see!

  4. Jerell says

    What about put the bike lane closest to the sidewalk and then add a concrete buffer and then next to that buffer will be the parking for the cars.. its a double buffer.. and the concrete island buffers could have the parking meters. Check this website out.. its a lot smarter and makes sense. A painted buffer on the street wont stop cars from entering the bike lanes.

  5. Illithid Dude says

    We have the cars park on the inside of the bikelane? Why not have cars park on the outside of the buffer, and have the bikelane next to the curb? It seems like that would make more sense.

  6. There are driveway entrances on Spring Street, I including one in the rendering. You can’t put concrete buffers and block driveways.

    Besides, people don’t bike in LA. This waste of taxpayer money will be largely unused, so it’s unlikely that the cars will be any danger.

  7. Concrete buffers? no one bikes in LA? clearly you have no idea what you are talking about

  8. Lawrence says

    Jon – speak for yourself. Plenty of people bike in L.A and more would do it if there was necessary bike infrastructure in place. People generally don’t want to ride with mixed traffic – protected lanes like this are the best way to encourage people to consider biking as a viable mode of transit. I for one would bike more if there were more lanes like this. What is a waste of taxpayer money in my mind are the many subsidies that go to exclusively to roads at the expense of multi modal infrastructure such as bike lanes and wider sidewalks for pedestrians, especially in more pedestrian oriented districts like downtown. Not everybody wants to drive everywhere.

  9. Jon, Spring Street already has a large number of cyclists, despite heavy traffic. I have no doubt this lane will have tremendous ridership. I do wonder if it would make more sense on the East side of the street, to avoid buses constantly crossing the lane to make stops.

    I hope the Main Street lane follows very shortly afterwards, since a one-way bike lane isn’t nearly as useful as one that goes in both directions.

    In any case, great work Valerie, DLANC and LADOT!

  10. Jerell says

    I was just reading i think on DTLA News or Blog about these painted lanes will be temporary until enough funding is gathered to transition to the separated and divided lanes. It looks very European i think.. if you watch the video i posted, it shows it all. It’s a lot safer too.

    Sidewalk => Bike Lanes => Planters, Bollards, or Short steel fence divider => Street Parking

  11. All I can say is … “groundbreaking” … I’m shocked that the LADOT is going for this, but I’m glad that they are finally thinking this way. This will have an enormous positive impact on Downtown. This along with Spring Street Park will attract new residents to the area who would never have considered it previously. With this project happening so quickly, prepare for many great things to come.

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