Saturday, February 13, 2010


The UCLA Bicycle Academy and the Bicycle Coalition at UCLA invite all interested cyclists, staff and representatives of UCLA Transportation Services, Office of Sustainability, the Campus Architect, UCLA Government and Community Relations, the Transportation Deputy for Councilmember Rosendahl, the Westwood Neighborhood Council, and other stakeholders and interested parties, to attend a meeting with Lisa Pinto, District Director for Congressman Henry Waxman.
The topic of the discussion is the Re-Opening the National Cemetery for Bicycle Traffic

The meeting will take place at 5:15 pm on Wednesday February 17, 2010  in 6282 Bunche Hall, The Graduate History Lounge. If you take the elevator, turn right and you will find the room on your left. Map here
If you are unable to attend the meeting, we would be happy to read out and hand over any statement you may want to put together. Please send to velocipedus at gmail

History: Previous to 9/11 the National Cemetery was a preferred bicycle route between Brentwood and Westwood and helped cyclists to avoid the worst intersection in LA, the bottleneck where Wilshire and I-405 meet. Back then, the support of Senator Cranston ensured bicycle access through the VA cemetery. In the aftermath of 9/11 this route has been closed with reference to National Security. More recently, the Veterans Administration has spoken about the pastoral nature of the grounds. The current ban of cycling is articulated as part of a more general ban of recreational activity, failing to draw a distinction between cycling for recreation and cycling for transportation

Re-opening the cemetery for bicycle traffic would add a significant attraction for current car drivers to use the bike. It will reduce car traffic congestion in this area, which will improve air quality and reduce travel times. It is in accordance with a number of established policies and priorities, both locally and nationally. In short, the decision to close the cemetery has deprived UCLA of a Safe Route to College and lead to increased environmental impacts. Alternative routes (Ohio, Montana) discourage cyclists because of length and terrain. The widening of the I-405 currently underway will further limit the ability for cyclists to use the Wilshire corridor.

The aim of the meeting is to discuss judicial and political avenues to lift this closure.

1 comment:

goober said...

I think this is a great thing to advocate.
If no one has thought of this one: Might I suggest a nice compromise?

Open a small gate (ie turnstile-like)
that will allow the dismounted rider and bicycle through. This, along with clear signage, would encourage bikers not to ride through the cemetery.

These measures may address the VA's concern for security and groundskeeper's concern for maintaining serenity.

I can't make it, but I hope this idea will help along the advocacy process!