Commuting to downtown L.A.
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  1. #1
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    Commuting to downtown L.A.

    I'm planning to start commuting into downtown L.A. soon from Santa Monica. Does anyone else commute to downtown from the west side? If so, any route suggestions? I'm planning to take Olympic most of the way. I've done the ride a couple times. There are no bike lanes, but the pavement is relatively nice and the lanes are pretty wide most of the way. My major complaints are the stoplights and the traffic.

    And, I'm not crazy for trying to commute into downtown, right?

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    no youre not. but i think olympic is the wrong route. (i dont live in SM so i cant give you better advice) but do a search, this has been discussed several times. also check out the LA bike way map i think its on metro's website.

  3. #3
    Sooper Dooper Moderator!
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    Venice Boulevard would be better.

  4. #4
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    I commute several times a week from Santa Monica to Downtown. I used to do Olympic. If you go super early, it's ok. Then again, all streets are fine when it is that early. (Coming home it is a warzone on Olympic... don't do it.)

    It gets crazy in K-town on Olympic. The pavement is jacked and I can't even count the number of close calls I've had.

    Truth be told, I've tried so many different routes (Pico, 4th street, 3rd Street...). But, the one I return to over and over again is Venice Blvd to Broadway. It adds an additional mile. However, Venice has some stretches with fewer stop lights that makes up for it. The bike lane is a huge plus.

    If I were to rate routes by the number of near misses with crazy drivers, Venice is the way to go. Good luck out there. I'll probably see you sometime if you decide to take Venice.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by il sogno
    Venice Boulevard would be better.

    And that ain't sayin' much.

    LA needs at least one 20 to 30' wide east/west bicycle freeway from downtown to the beach... sandwiched somewhere between Wilshire and Santa Monica. I'm convinced it would highly transformative.
    Last edited by rocco; 11-24-2009 at 07:02 AM.

  6. #6
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    Thanks guys. I had thought Venice would be out of the way since it's father south. But, I'm surprised to find Google maps says it would only add 1 mile onto my ride each way. Venice it is. Thanks for the advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by rocco
    And that ain't sayin' much.

    LA needs at least one 20 to 30' wide east/west bicycle freeway from downtown to the beach... sandwiched somewhere between Wilshire and Santa Monica. I'm convinced it would highly transformative.
    That would be amazing...

  7. #7
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    I ride from the Beverly Hills and pass through downtown Mon-Fri. I hate Olympic. In the morning going east I take Pico. But that's like at 6:00am so traffic isn't bad. On the way home (westbound) I take Venice. Been doing this route for like 5 years. Best I've come up with.
    Good luck
    TY (northcoast)

  8. #8
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    Venice is a lot better then Olympic IMHO.

  9. #9
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Have you ridden Olympic during rush hour? Those comfy parking lanes become traffic lanes and there's not much room for a bike. So you gotta take the lane and endure the wrath of road-raging lunatics who are pissed off you're in their way.

    I agree that taking Venice is probably the best. Be forewarned that the bike lane ends just west of Crenshaw. There are some tight spots but it's mostly OK from there into Downtown.

    What exactly are your start/end points? I have a great route that takes me through Westwood, Century City and then basically residential streets through Beverly Hills and almost all the way into Downtown via 8th. But it only makes sense to do that if you're destination is more north than south.

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  10. #10
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    Thanks!

    I keep looking for another route to try. Do you have a version that can be uploaded onto a Garmin?



    Quote Originally Posted by DrRoebuck
    Have you ridden Olympic during rush hour? Those comfy parking lanes become traffic lanes and there's not much room for a bike. So you gotta take the lane and endure the wrath of road-raging lunatics who are pissed off you're in their way.

    I agree that taking Venice is probably the best. Be forewarned that the bike lane ends just west of Crenshaw. There are some tight spots but it's mostly OK from there into Downtown.

    What exactly are your start/end points? I have a great route that takes me through Westwood, Century City and then basically residential streets through Beverly Hills and almost all the way into Downtown via 8th. But it only makes sense to do that if you're destination is more north than south.


  11. #11
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    Hey I am one of the co-founders of ridewithgps.com -- I never expected that live embedded map to work in a forum! Super cool, I never thought to even try it, since most forums don't allow that sort of thing. I will have to try it out on a couple other forums as well and see what happens.

    Thanks everyone for enjoying the site!

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