LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – With many streets across Los Angeles empty due to the safer-at-home orders brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, and some sidewalks cramped making it difficult to social-distance, there’s now a push to close some roads to cars and open them up to pedestrians.
According to Elijah Chiland with Curbed LA, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin has asked the L.A. Department of Transportation too look into the possibility of closing some streets to traffic.
“There’s a firm proposal now from the Del Rey Neighborhood Council to close some streets in that area on the Westside of L.A. And some other neighborhood councils are looking to do the same thing now,” Chiland told CBS2 Monday.
The streets under consideration would mostly be in residential areas.
Chiland said the discussion revolves around how the closure would be enforced, and how many neighborhoods it could potentially be implemented in.
“That’s important, because if you only do it in some places, it’s possible that people hear about it and then, all of a sudden, you have more people coming to walk in those neighborhoods, and that sort of defeats the purpose of making more room for social distancing,” Chiland explained.
L.A. officials could examine the city of Oakland as a possible model. Earlier this month, Oakland’s mayor closed 74 miles of residential streets to vehicle traffic.
It’s also unclear what would happen to the closures when the safer-at-home orders are lifted.