Los Angeles City Council approves bus-only lanes for 7.7 mile stretch, but urges Metro to consider more

Woman getting on Metro bus
Woman getting on Metro bus
UCLA Transportation/Flickr

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The Los Angeles City Council voted Tuesday to approve a plan for just over seven-and-a-half miles of bus-only lanes along Wilshire Boulevard, from MacArthur Park to West Los Angeles. Most council members wanted more.

The plan takes the bus-only lanes to Centinela Avenue, but does not include Beverly Hills or Santa Monica. It also exempts a one-mile stretch in Westwood. People there have argued that bus-only lanes don’t really help, but not everyone agrees.

Councilman Richard Alarcon compared the politics that created gaps in the route to the politics that kept Metro’s green line from stopping right at Los Angeles International Airport. "Some people complained. They had influence. They stopped the project. Millions of people since have asked, ‘What were they thinking?’"

The Federal Transit Administration has pledged $23 million toward the bus-only lanes, but the L.A. City Council, the county Board of Supervisors and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority must agree on a plan soon. Since the County and Metro have already approved the fragmented plan, the City Council voted to accept it too.