LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles City Council voted Friday to move forward on a citywide plan to address street takeovers, seeking reports and analysis for a multiyear work plan and funding strategy.
In the last eight months, at least six people have died during or near street takeovers in Los Angeles, according to a motion filed by several council members in August.
Prominently, there have been incidents on the Sixth Street Bridge, which opened July 10 to much fanfare but was soon overshadowed by those who came to perform street takeovers, spinouts and other activities blocking traffic — resulting in several closures.
The council members’ motion also pointed to issues with street takeovers in Council Districts 7 and 14. It suggested that the city could put in place traffic calming measures such as rumble strips and raised pavement markers as “effective and cost-efficient means of deterring intersection takeovers,” along with “Slow Streets” designs.
Among the council members who seconded the motion was Kevin de León, who represents the 14th District. De León and Councilman Gil Cedillo are facing calls to resign for their involvement in the City Hall racism scandal. Former Council President Nury Martinez has already resigned for her comments on the leaked recording. Several people who called into public comment blasted the council for continuing to conduct business with de León and Cedillo — who continued to be absent Friday — still on the council, pointing out that the council was considering items brought forward by de León, Cedillo and Martinez.
“In light of the increasingly dangerous nature of these activities, the city should continue to examine the feasibility and implementation of both temporary and permanent traffic calming measures for intersection takeovers and street racing,” the motion reads.
“Violent speeding and street takeovers have exploded over the past few years and it’s imperative that we continue to bring more resources to combat this sort of deadly behavior,” Councilman Bob Blumenfield said in a statement. “We not only need more law enforcement and speed reduction infrastructure, but we need more data to proactively stop dangerous driving.”
Councilwoman Monica Rodriguez said at a September council meeting that the motion “(builds) off of the work that many of us having been leading independently in our own districts for traffic calming and other mitigation efforts.”
The council called for:
— the Los Angeles Police Department to report back in 30 days on data related to intersection takeovers, including the locations with the highest volume of calls;
— the Los Angeles Police Department to also analyze these locations to determine if there are similarities and produce recommendations, and report on all street racing measures the city has implemented along with case studies of proven measures from other cities, and,
— the City Administrative Officer, LAPD and Department of Transportation to report back on a multiyear work plan and funding strategy to implement the measures to curb intersection takeovers and street racing in priority locations across the city.