Lincoln Boulevard Task Force Announce Results Of Its Two Surveys

Thursday, 14 Mar 2013, 8:25:00 AM

Brenton Garen

The Lincoln Boulevard Task Force has released the results of its two opinion surveys: a "Resident Survey" for all Santa Monica residents and a "Business Survey" for businesses along Lincoln.

Much of what the data shows was common knowledge: Lincoln is a congested roadway that appears to be neglected and over-represented by auto serving business. Much of the neglect is attributed to four high priority issues: public safety, weeds and trash, graffiti and homelessness.

Residents want more restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops, and other neighborhood serving businesses; they also would consider relaxing parking requirements for these businesses. Business owners want more off-street/shared parking and join residents in desiring a multitude of street amenities: “smart” crosswalks (with flashing lights), better street and sidewalk lighting, and more trash cans.

Fifty-five percent of residents support the Big Blue Bus priority lanes, while 74 percent of business respondents oppose them. This suggests that some additional parking and support from the City of LA and the County to extend the priority lane to LAX might change business opposition and also lead to reducing traffic congestion, the number one resident issue needing change: 77 percent are concerned with increased traffic.

Perhaps more parking funded by Transportation Impact Fees, or by community benefits from current development north of the Freeway that adds to Lincoln traffic, might be prudent.

Adding trees and landscaping in general, adding landscaped medians, and adding bus and biking amenities, all received strong support, as did adaptive re-use of existing buildings for new businesses.

Perhaps the most important data addresses building heights along Lincoln: While 64 percent of residents support the proposed three story limit, only 37% support more affordable housing on Lincoln. More than 70 percent of businesses and residents favor limits of two and three stories on the proposed Activity Center at the Albertsons site and the Transit Center at Pico and Lincoln. If the City finds traffic solutions, opinions might shift.

The Task Force’s goal is to facilitate the transformation of Lincoln into an attractive, pedestrian-friendly, neighborhood-serving street that reflects the needs and desires of the neighborhood residents and local businesses.

The Task Force, which is supported by the Ocean Park Association, Friends of Sunset Park, Pico Neighborhood Association and Borderline Neighborhood Group, was formed in February 2012 to help make Lincoln Boulevard “Safe, Clean, Beautiful, and Green.”

Link to the Survey Summary presentation: http://www.opa-sm.org/

According to Task Force Chair Roger Swanson, there was littlee data to guide the organization’s effort until these surveys were completed.

“Now, thanks to 638 residents, 91 percent residing south of the Freeway, representing a total of 1,524 household residents, and 15 percent of the businesses along Lincoln (south of the Freeway) we have data to support the transformation,” Swanson said.

For more information, contact Roger Swanson at rogercswanson@gmail.com.

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