Happy New Year, everyone! Before we move on to 2017, we thought we'd take a look back at 2016 to remember where we've been and what we've done. July 2016 marked the beginning of our third year as a coalition, and while that in itself is a reason to celebrate...we're surprised and proud to see how much we actually accomplished in this past year, in a variety of categories, with little more than our enthusiasm, the past two years of experience, and sheer determination.
Breaking it down into categories:
We made a parklet...
and then we made another.
On September 16th and October 21st, we transformed curbside public parking spaces into parklets, creating temporary public parks to mark PARK(ing) Day and Pasadena's Art Night. Our purpose was to invite passers-by to question and re-imagine how we use our publicly-owned spaces, and to demonstrate how much fun, creativity, and community participation can happen in the square footage and 2 hours that we normally use to store a car.
Photo: Kodama Taiko from the Pasadena JACCC performs in our very first Parklet, PasCSC x Distant Lands. (M. Anderson)
Policy and Advocacy
Vision Zero is a concept originated in Sweden and adopted by New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. These cities have pledged to improve their engineering, education, and enforcement to reduce serious vehicle-related injuries and fatalities to zero. On Monday, October 27, the Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition requested that the Pasadena City Council become a Vision Zero city. Council Members directed DOT staff to study the issue and return with a proposal. This is a great opportunity and a clear example of the CSC's leadership on the issue of Complete Streets in Pasadena!
Our advocacy succeeded in extending Transit-Oriented Development areas in Pasadena to include an optional additional quarter-mile radius, bringing the total radius to a half mile from all Pasadena Metro stations except Sierra Madre Villa. We also advocated for and won a reduction in minimum parking requirements, which encourages developers to build more public transit-friendly units, according to market demand.
Photo: We don't always take photos when we go to City Hall, so this one from the Mayor's proclamation of Bike Week will have to do. (J. Edwards)
Bike to Work Day
On May 19, we hosted a pit stop at the Arroyo Food Co-Op in support of all folks who chose to celebrate Bike to Work Day (by biking to work, of course!) In addition to scones, fruit, energy bars, bike lights, and other treats, we invited visitors to share their thoughts on ideas for beautifying the nearby Wilson Avenue overpass.
CicLAvia Feeder Rides
The only thing better than being able to comfortably bike to an Open Streets event is riding with friends, and thanks to new member Colin, we made it to the last two CicLAvias of this year with ample time to enjoy both events! With 18 scheduled events in 2017, including the rescheduled and much-anticipated 626 Golden Streets in our own backyard, we hope you'll have a chance to bike, walk, or ride with us this year!
For Walktober, the Coalition sponsored two excellent and well-attended walks.
On October 15, the Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition sponsored a Public Art Tour of Pasadena by Meriel Stern, Arts and Culture Commissioner. About 20 people enjoyed learning more about Pasadena's public art, with an emphasis on ceramics.
On October 22, the Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition sponsored a Pasadena Architecture tour, led by local architect Wade Frazier from PBWS Architects. Wade led an extensive walking tour through Madison Heights and Caltech. The tour was especially well-attended with over 35 attendees (including 3 dogs!)
Photo: Wade Frazier leads a group through an architecture tour of Madison Heights. (W. Reutimann)
North Fair Oaks
The North Fair Oaks Empowerment Initiative is a team of neighbors, businesses, and local advocates working to build people power and a safer environment - including a more complete street along N Fair Oaks between Woodbury and Howard. Together, we planned and held a community Complete Streets workshop on July 23. Staff members from Pasadena DoT, Public Works, and Planning presented the Complete Streets concepts and briefed the community how to engage the city in the improvements. CSC volunteers led attendees on a "walking audit" to identify and come up with concrete ideas for change. We're excited to see the team moving forward with their ideas!
Photo: N. Fair Oaks community members conduct a walking audit at the corner of N Fair Oaks and Montana. (C. Seu)
As part of an ongoing conversation with Art Center about their proposed Master Plan, we organized two informal walk-and-talk meetups in November and December with members of the Master Plan design team. We look forward to further fruitful discussions about the interactions between the Master Plan and the surrounding streets near South Raymond, Pas CSC's efforts to date, and the future of bike infrastructure all over the city.
Metro Bike Share
Metro Bike Share is coming to Pasadena! The Coalition sponsored a community outreach session, gave detailed feedback to staff on locations, and took a special tour of Downtown L.A.'s Metro Bike Share system with Metro staff.
Want to suggest a Bike Share station location? Propose your station on Metro's interactive map!
Alan Deane, Phillip O'Neill, and #WDR2016
Bicycling and walking are fun, healthy and sustainable modes of transportation, and we strongly believe that everyone should be able to ride and walk in comfort and safety. Unfortunately, too often people who walk and bike are vulnerable to collisions with people driving cars. As we move towards the goal of Vision Zero for Pasadena, we remember those we have lost. We held memorials for two Pasadena cyclists that were killed in the past five years (Phillip O'Neill and Alan Deane) and we held Pasadena's first Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims on a rainy November 20th evening at City Hall.
Photo: Lighting candles at City Hall for World Day of Remembrance 2016. (M. Anderson)
Other Activities and Accomplishments
Be a part of the action in 2017
If you love bikes, buses, trains, or walking, and are looking for a way to make a positive difference where you live, consider joining us this year! We engage in a wide range of activities, so with any luck, you'll find something that interests you. Whether you ride a bike, bus, skateboard, or car; whether you spend your days at school, work, or home; whether you're a seasoned professional or a curious beginner...
If you have a passion for learning, growing a community, and working toward safer streets in Pasadena, you are invited.
Our next meeting is on Monday, January 9, at 7:00 pm.
This one's especially important because we'll be tackling the big questions: What kind of organization do we want to be? What are our goals? And what kind of beautiful trouble will we make together this year? It's going to be an interesting discussion over delicious snacks, and we hope you can make it.
1280 Afton Street, Pasadena, CA 91103 (map)
Updates, agenda, and access info:
Families, children, teens, and well-behaved dogs are welcome.
Can't make it to the meeting, but still want to suggest a project or let us know what you think about what we're doing? You can send us your feedback using this form.
Want to stay updated on our meetings and events? You can join our one-monthly mailing list here (your email will not be shared).
Meeting Schedule for 2017
Our meetings are often (but not always) on the first Monday of the month at 7:00 p.m. They are often (but not always) at the offices of PBWS Architects, 234 East Colorado Boulevard, Suite 700.
February 6, Speaker: Pasadena Superintendent of Forestry Kenneth Graham @ PBWS Architects
March 6, Speaker: Alan Loomis, Deputy Director of Urban Design & Mobility for the City of Glendale @ PBWS Architects