Below is 2017 City Council District 5 Candidate Mark Herd’s full questionnaire response to Bike The Vote L.A.:
1. What role do you see for walking, biking, and transit in improving the lives of Angelenos?
Ending gridlock is one of my goals and walking, biking and transit infrastructure improvements are part of the solution.
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 provides a vision for a transportation system composed of safe and quality transit, bicycle, pedestrian, and automotive options. Do you support the goals of this plan, and how would you like to see the plan implemented in CD5?
I support the goals and would like to see it implemented with the blessing of the community where changes would be made.
3. Mobility Plan 2035 enacted a ‘Vision Zero’ for Los Angeles, with the goal of eliminating traffic-related deaths within 20 years. In order to meet this goal, LADOT identified a “High Injury Network” to prioritize safety improvements on L.A.’s most dangerous streets. However, after a year and a half, we still haven’t seen much action to reduce transportation-related deaths on City streets. What do you see as the hold-ups for improving safety on Los Angeles streets, and how would you work to address these impediments in reducing speeding to save lives?
Infrastructure spending or lack of it is probably the biggest holdup. Reckless over-development also turns safe intersections into death traps yet our leaders continue to favor developers over the needs of the community. I will put the community first always.
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 how Angelenos get around? Given that Measure M will return millions of dollars directly to the City of Los Angeles each year, do you support increasing the funding the City allocates to making it easier and safer for Angelenos to walk and bike?
Measure R and Measure M both help L.A. tremendously and we must continue to improve and expand our transportation infrastructure and transportation options. I will continue to push for more improvements if elected.
5. There is universal agreement that Westwood Boulevard is a dangerous street for people walking and bicycling. Westwood Boulevard is identified as a corridor on LADOT’s High Injury Network, bike lanes were considered a priority in the 2010 Bike Plan, and the project has wide community support, including from UCLA and the Westwood Village Improvement Association. However, implementation of continuous bicycle infrastructure on Westwood has stalled for years. Prioritization of safety improvements for the street was removed from the Mobility Plan 2035 by an amendment co-authored by Councilmember Koretz. Will you commit to implementing quality bicycle infrastructure on Westwood Boulevard during the next Council term? (If not, what specific alternative do you support to improve the safety of people walking and bicycling in the area, and to address the high rate of crashes related to speeding on Westwood Boulevard?)
Yes, I will commit to implementing quality bicycle infrasture on Westwood Blvd during the next Council term if that is what the community wants.
6. Bike share systems have started to be installed across Los Angeles, but as systems expand to different areas of Los Angeles and neighboring cities, experts foresee two major obstacles: stations that are discontinuous/too far apart and stations with unsafe walking conditions that limit access. How would you envision the growth of bike share in the City of Los Angeles and regionally?
I would like to see more funding to make access safer and stations more abundant. I’d like to see L.A. as the greenest, cleanest and easiest city to get around in. Building out quality bicycle infrastructure is important as we strive to make L.A. the cleanest city in the nation.