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Let's Talk Sidewalks

By Eric Richardson
Published: Thursday, January 11, 2007, at 09:25AM
Olive Street Eric Richardson [Flickr]

It doesn't take a lot of time spent walking around Downtown to realize that we've got some serious issues with sidewalks. During his presentation to DLANC on Tuesday Captain Smith mentioned spots on 6th street where you could lose a small child into the sidewalk potholes.

There's a lot of interesting facts about the sidewalk situation, but too many to list here. After the jump I'll get into it a little bit. But first, the fun part:

A few of us from DLANC were just talking about sidewalks and the idea came up to get some suggestions on really rough spots where we can push for repair. So I ask you, where are the worst sidewalks of Downtown?

Name some good ones and I'll go take photos of them so that we can revel in their dangerousness.

More details on LA's sidewalks after the jump...

Walking around Downtown you'll see sidewalks that jut this way and that, seemingly doing anything but staying level. Sidewalk repair, though, is an expensive proposition and the City doesn't have a big budget for upkeep.

This is particularly true in the Historic Core, where many buildings have basements that sit under the sidewalk (the reason for the glass tiles you'll see many places). Those basements often aren't strong enough to support the weight of a rebuilt sidewalk.

The City just spent $1.7 million reconstructing sidewalks on the southwest corner of 3rd and Broadway, and is asking MTA for $2 million more to do the northwest corner of 4th and Broadway. In the case of Grand Central, much of that money went into filling in the edges of the building's basement in order to sure up the sidewalk foundation.

How much work can we get done? Well, not much through the City's normal channels. Back in 2004 I mentioned that the waiting list for sidewalk repair is 82 years long, comprised of 4,600 miles of damaged concrete.

Because of the heavy transit traffic Downtown, though, we are eligible for some funds that other places are not. If we identify specific problems and really make noise about them there's certain to be money that can be found.

So again, let's hear it: Where are Downtown's worst sidewalks?

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