1. What role do you see for walking, transit, and biking in the getting residents and students in Council District 12 to and from local businesses, parks, and schools?
As a 30 years Civil Engineer at the City of Los Angeles, I have worked on hundreds of projects involving the design-build of streets, traffic systems, crosswalks, safe routes to school, bikeway routes, bikeway lanes, bus stops & shelters and all aspects involved in the transit system.
My design team proceeds in accordance with the extensive environmental studies we have, community impact, business impacts, wilderness impacts and traffic mitigation (both vehicular & pedestrian) we put forth multiple scenarios and models to select the best design that scores the highest on all these critical criteria and delivering a World Class Street Services.
Next, I take these concepts and discuss monthly with our planning group committee with the Mayor’s office to set the goals for the years 2030, 2040 and up to 2050 to account for the increasing flow of new Angelinos arriving the City and create models of the added services required to accommodate this population increase. No idea or energy efficiency product or safety measures are left without through investigation to evaluate every single angle and item.
With all this above taken, I have delivered to the City 15 final products “Great Streets” that enhances and increase walking with increased pedestrian side street lighting, solar powered street lighting for bus shelters, improved facilities at bus stops, safe crossings zones and newly designed ADA ramps at corners.
Further, today, and for 18 years I lead the design-build of the Transit Lighting Division and currently working Citywide on 35 active projects involving trains, buses, bikeways along tracks and so forth.
In CD 12 I did that concept design along Reseda Blvd. to enhance the business district and if the Council allowed me the street lights would have actually even provided WiFi along the sidewalks. Also, I have designed an enhanced bikeway route along the orange line itself all the way to Chatsworth station with environmentally friendly lights and solar lights.
In summary, I understand the problems; I have studied the options, put forth ready to implement solutions, however, lack of support and understanding by the council prevented me from completing the delivery of these services to CD 12 and that is why I am running for office now so that I provide my district and community the best facilities not only in transportation but in quality of life.
2. Thirty-eight percent of Cal State University, Northridge students do not have access to a car for their daily commute. What actions can Los Angeles take to make the CSUN campus more accessible for students, staff, and faculty including better bike, pedestrian, and transit connectivity around the campus? Additionally, do you support implementation of protected bike lanes on Parthenia Street to connect Metrolink Northridge Station to existing protected bike lanes on Reseda Boulevard?
During my 30 years as an Engineer for the City of Los Angeles I designed and delivered thousands of Street Lights to enhance the vehicular traffic, bikeways and pedestrian traffic. Further, I have designed multiple Solar Units to enhance visibility of riders along Reseda Blvd.
When I designed complementary concepts for Reseda Blvd. including street enhancements, improved parking, safe bikeway and added street lighting as part of the Great Streets projects I had advocated to utilize the available extra funds to extend the scope of work to include Parthenia Street and other CSUN paths as part of the improvements. However, this expansion was challenged by various Councilmembers preventing us the engineers from delivering a reasonable needed solution.
I support the implementation of protected bike lanes to connect to Metrolink Northridge Station comparable to the bikeway we designed along the orange line connecting Pierce College, Topanga Mall all the way to Chatsworth Metro Station.
If our engineering designs and signed plans are allowed to be built and not resisted by current politics, I would have delivered a complete well thought bikeway system throughout the whole valley.
On a special note here, the Solar Bikeway Lights are smart enough to detect bikes and adjust the illumination levels accordingly to enhance efficiency.
3. CD12 sees some of L.A.’s worst speeding and street racing, with three out of the top five most dangerous intersections in all of California located within the District. In response to the condition of dangerous streets across the city, Los Angeles adopted a ‘Vision Zero’ program with the goal of significantly reducing the 240+ annual roadway deaths that the City currently sees. Do you support prioritizing safety on L.A.’s High Injury Network streets in CD12 such as Reseda, Roscoe, and Balboa Boulevards, even when there may be trade-offs in terms of automotive travel time or on-street parking?
This specific item is on my 10 priorities to resolve within my first 100 days plan to address traffic issues and prioritize safety.
As a member of the Porter Ranch Neighborhood Council and the Chair of its Safety Committee and as a C-PAB LAPD volunteer I currently work since 2017 very close with LAPD to address the street speeding along Sesnon and Reseda and other CD 12 streets and continuously plan traps to catch these individuals. We had many challenges because of the lack of funding, but once elected I will advocate and deliver increased LAPD funds for more law enforcements on the street and expand the special forces we trained to fight the speeding and racing.
Further, through my regular job at the City of LA, I allocated funds close to $1M for trimming over 10,000 trees in CD 12 to enhance the delivery of the street lighting illumination at night and increase the safety level for vehicular and pedestrian traffic in the district.
Unfortunately, many of our streets in CD 12 has speed limits set by ordinances adopted by Councilmemebers depending on very old traffic data and hence causing the state of traffic chaos in terms of posted speeds and travel time. Vision zero will not work till we re-engineer the ordinances and utilize fresh traffic studies that reflects real time traffic today.
With my 30 years engineering experience in the transit field, and my knowledge in the pitfalls of the current ordinances, I am the only candidate that can deliver quick prompt solutions to re-engineer the speed limits and expedite the deployment of the new traffic timing given I understand the design aspects, the roots of the problem and the weakness and lack of understanding of traffic rules by Councilmembers that adopted the current faulty ordinances.
4. LADOT has determined that speed is the predominant factor in whether traffic collisions are deadly. Despite this fact, Los Angeles recently increased speed limits on 100 miles of local streets to abide by state law, including raising the speed limit to 45 mph on Winnetka Ave., Wilbur Ave. & Reseda Blvd. in CD12. Would you support implementation of lane reductions and other traffic calming infrastructure in order to reduce vehicle speeds on surface streets in CD12?
I totally support immediate traffic mitigation plan and as I stated earlier it is within my first 100 days plan.
As I previously explained, the speed limit problem goes back to 2010 with LADOT usage of very old traffic count data and creating expedited ordinances for these speed limits without any consideration to the design recommendations set by “Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) – FHWA”. These faulty ordinances that up to date control our traffic flow and speed limits need to be re-engineered given it was adopted by councilmembers whom did not understand traffic engineering. Today some streets such as Mason have different speed limits every couple miles ranging from 35MPH to 45MPH and causing driving confusion.
I am very familiar on redesigning these streets and intersections to minimize accidents and provide a smooth flow of well timed traffic while incorporating traffic calming infrastructure. In the early 90’s I worked within my teams on thousands of projects for ATSAC (Automated Traffic Surveillance and Control) and today with my knowledge & experience I can direct LADOT through my ongoing involvement with vision zero to have these solutions implemented immediately rather than sitting on the shelfs collecting dust for many years.
Once elected, I will amend these adopted ordinances and instruct LADOT to utilize and use newly conducted traffic data studies in compliance with MUTCD and only adopt if the design reflects the existing problems we face.
CD 12 traffic problems even expands to include the need for safe routes to schools’ crosswalks, midblock crossings at Reseda North of Rinaldi, traffic mitigation at Reseda and Sesnon and my list of re-engineering is too long to list. Keep in mind, funding is available for all these improvements.
5. Los Angeles’ traffic woes are compounded by the reality that many parents, students, and workers don’t feel safe commuting even short distances or performing school drop-offs walking, rolling, or by bike. What would you do as Councilmember to improve active transportation options around schools, public transit, and in commercial districts to provide better mobility options for CD12 residents?
I have the past 30 years been working as a Civil Engineer in the City of Los Angeles and have been working since 1989 to date on many projects to:-
- Enhance safety and lighting at intersections with special attention to crosswalks.
- Design mid-block crosswalks as part of Safe Routes to school program.
- Provide increased lighting for the sidewalks that has high volume of pedestrian traffic
- Design improved bus shelters with Solar Energy Street Lights
- Design Safe bikeways parallel to newly designed rapid buses and along long stretches of wide streets to provide safe lanes for cars, buses and bikes to coexist on the same street.
- Provide safe crossings at the tracks of the transit system with increased level of lighting at night to enhance train driver visibility
- Allow multi-use drop off zones to streamline traffic without causing delays or disruption to bikelanes
- Implement the City Planning recommendations of 2030 today to benefit of the proposed Transit system solutions and facilities
As an elected Councilmember, I will have the authority to direct adequate funds to LADOT, SreetsLA and Street Lighting to design-build the best green street solutions and I will with my engineering experience and knowledge be able to request solutions based on realistic deliverables rather than a wish list to be shelfed as has been happening. My current work designs will be built and enhance once elected.
6. While one of Los Angeles most recently developed districts, CD12 also has the largest senior population by percentage in the city. What improvements to mobility options would you implement to empower CD12’s senior population to comfortably age in place?
Current mobility solutions for seniors are very limited for many reasons. The main reason being the lack of understanding of the councilmembers to this rapidly increasing problem and hence render difficulty to deliver solutions.
The current transit system is not adequate enough to provide full mobility to seniors and even though the City Transit Division works diligently on the design build of the network still construction challenges slows down the progress.
On a personal level, my mother had mobility problem because she is at the age that cannot walk far nor drive anymore and hence cannot use the bus system given that the bus shelter is at least 2 blocks away, however, the federal Metro Access program came to the rescue and she is 100% mobile today with subsidized transportation today that takes her to all her desired destinations thanks to this program.
Once elected I would extend a partnership between our current City DASH bus program and the Federal Metro Access Vans to provide a new level of service that provide adequate mobility transportation system to all qualified seniors. I believe the merger of these 2 great programs will be the best solution for seniors and is a win-win both on the federal level and city level.