Below is 2017 City Council District 13 Candidate Jessica Salans’ full questionnaire response to Bike The Vote L.A.:
1. What future do you see for active mobility, and public transit in the daily lives of Angelenos?
Our campaign would like to see an increase in active mobility. We’d like to see protected bike lanes, city sponsored bikes available for public use. We’d like to create more spaces for public congregation to be destinations for on foot and public transit. We’d like to create more local bus routes, more accessibility to current public transit and of course, expand and make sure it is utilizing sustainable practices.
2. In 2015, Los Angeles approved Mobility Plan 2035, the first update to the Transportation Element of its General Plan since 1999. Mobility Plan 2035 puts “safety first” in transportation decisions, and a presents a plan for a sorely lacking East/West quality bike routes through the 13th District. Do you support Mobility 2035’s recommendations of protected bike lanes on key connecting streets traversing CD13?
Absolutely. More protected bike lanes, everywhere.
3. Prevalent speeding on Los Angeles streets takes a deadly toll on people who walk and bike to get around, predominantly children and low-income residents. To address this danger, Los Angeles adopted ‘Vision Zero,’ with the goal of eliminating traffic-related deaths within 20 years. Do you support Vision Zero’s prioritization of safety for Los Angeles’ most vulnerable commuters, even when there may be trade-offs in terms vehicular travel times or available on-street parking?
Of course. We should be setting ourselves to the highest standards. Let me just add too, that this requires a cultural and conversational shift. Los Angeles, due to the solidarity of cars, functions on a certain plane of awareness for pedestrians and cyclists. We need to not just create the infrastructure but also break down our cultural / class barriers to this.
4. Angelenos recently approved Metro’s transportation funding plan, Measure M, with an impressive mandate of support from over 71% of voters. What opportunities do you see for Measure M to improve the options for Angelenos get around in CD13 and elsewhere? Given that Measure M will return millions of dollars directly to the City of Los Angeles each year, do you support increased funding to make biking and walking in the city easier and safer for Angelenos?
Measure M provides many new opportunities for greater public access to transportation. I do support increased funding for making biking and walking easier, safer and appealing for Angelenos.
5. In 2009, New York City initiated a major transformation of its central tourist hub, Times Square, resulting in a 40% drop in traffic injuries and significantly increased retail values. Some have called for Hollywood Blvd to be enhanced as a tourist destination with a similar pedestrian plaza between Highland Ave and Orange Dr. Do you support developing the central hub of Hollywood Blvd into a people-oriented public square in the next council term?
YES. Absolutely. We need more people-oriented public squares (hello, Europe), more destinations where people want to congregate. We need this for our residents and to make Hollywood appealing and exciting for tourists. We have so much rich history as a city, within Hollywood alone, and we must capitalize on that by making it inviting and lively.
6. Los Angeles is beginning to employ bike share as a new transportation option, but many barriers to access remain, particularly the cost of riding and the fact that a credit card is needed to use the system. Some cities have offered subsidies to low-income riders and cash payment options to address these issues. What can the City of Los Angeles do to help as many residents as possible enjoy the benefits that bike share will bring?
A few things. First of all, it’s 2017. We should be able to offer card, cash, coins, EBT. Second, it would be really interesting to set up a kind of resident card that you can fill up with “points” when you volunteer for something. So say for instance we had District 13 cards- when we host a homelessness count/feeding/drive, when we host an educational event, when we sponsor a clean up etc, volunteers can add points to their cards which can then be used to rent out bikes.
Bottom line- we want bikes/transportation to be as accessible as possible for our residents, period. 🙂