It's a new year and a new Wilshire Boulevard. The long-in-the-works Wilshire Bus Rapid Transit project, which converts curb lanes into peak-hour bus-only lanes, kicks into high gear in 2014 (a 1.8-mile section of the busway opened last year in Koreatown). A construction notice indicates work starts this month on "reconstruction of the existing curb and four middles lanes of Wilshire Boulevard" from Western Avenue to San Vicente Boulevard. "Overall improvements include constructing curb and gutter as well as paving and striping the street." The Los Angeles Department of Transportation is overseeing the bus lane work through Mid-Wilshire and Miracle Mile; the lanes abruptly end at Beverly Hills because that city wanted no part of a project that improves public transit (shocker). Condo canyon in Westwood also opted out, but the bus lanes will also be added near the VA hospital and in West LA, up to the border of Santa Monica.
Construction will last a year and one to two lanes of traffic will be open in each direction during the work. Reps for the project tell us they'll be attending neighborhood council meetings and briefing residents near the construction zones. When all is said and done, in winter 2015, travel times on crosstown Wilshire buses—which carry more people than cars do—will improve by a whopping 24 percent.
· Reconstruction of Wilshire Boulevard Starts Soon: Roadwork Through Winter 2015 [Larchmont Buzz]