To the editor: Officials estimate that 47 seconds would be added to the morning commute along Figueroa Street if a "road diet" that includes bike lanes is implemented. ("Halted Figueroa bike lane project riles cycling activists," July 17)
The only way I've ever been able to safely pass through that area on my bicycle was by carrying a road map and following a circuitous route that avoided all the major streets. Something is wrong when streets that should be the lifeblood of neighborhoods are allowed to fester as open sores and exist as racetracks that allow motorists to vie for the pole position at the next red light.
It's time for all of us to go on a road diet and slow down enough to appreciate the communities in which we live, visit and do business in. Then we may see people dusting off all those bikes in their garages.
Brian Bennett, La Verne
To the editor: Expanding bike lanes has been one of the dumbest public policy moves of the last few years.
Streets like Figueroa are too narrow for bike lanes. Bicyclists do not move at the same speed as traffic — sometimes they're faster, sometimes slower. They are hard to see. They interfere with the ability of a motorist to make a right turn. The carved-out bike lanes make the traffic lanes exceedingly narrow.
Mixing bicyclists and motorized traffic is dangerous. Striping more bike lanes might make sense if there were large numbers of cyclists demanding access to the roads, but our aging population is not yearning to bike everywhere.
Erica Hahn, Monrovia
To the editor: Many other cities have shown that bike lanes and reducing car speeds on major city streets save lives and improve local businesses. As a property owner in City Councilman Gil Cedillo's district, where a promised bike lane on Figueroa might not happen, I see the poor quality of life that freeway-speed car traffic is causing.
Cedillo's lack of vision will lead to more preventable injury and death in my community.
Kathleen Smith, Los Angeles