A traffic study by the City of Los Angeles Department of Transportation determined that over 627 vehicles from the southern beach cities make a right turn from Vista del Mar onto Napoleon and Waterview Streets in a three-hour peak period (7 to 10 a.m.) to cut through residential streets in Playa del Rey to avoid the intersection at Vista del Mar and Culver Boulevard.
The study was undertaken after concerned residents asked 11th District City Councilman Bill Rosendahl to work with the transportation department to install signage that prohibits right-turns between certain hours because of dangerous cut-through traffic where pedestrians are at risk and a dog was recently struck by a vehicle that didn’t stop.
Mo Blorfroshan, transportation engineer for the transportation department’s Western District of the Bureau of Traffic Management, had called for the study to be done and said the results are astounding.
Local residents said they’ve had enough of speeding cars not stopping at stop signs, cutting off other drivers, and putting pedestrians with strollers and pets at risk.
The study was completed on a Tuesday morning, counting vehicles that made a right turn from Vista del Mar to Napoleon and Waterview Streets to cut through the residential streets trying to gain access to Culver Boulevard and the Route 90 Marina Expressway and freeway access.
A “No Right Turn” sign at Vista del Mar Lane (just past the traffic light at Waterview Street) between the hours of 7 to 9 a.m. has been posted for some time, but the hours for the sign will be changed to 7 to 10 a.m.
In an attempt to shave off a few minutes in their efforts to reach the Route 90 Marina Expressway on Culver Boulevard to access the Interstate 405 (San Diego Freeway) and the Interstate 10 (Santa Monica Freeway), these commuters are a danger to the neighborhood, said one local resident.
Part of the influx of cut-through traffic is because of the existing construction of the high-occupancy vehicle lanes on the San Diego Freeway — which is only about 60 percent complete, according to Blorfroshan — and the construction on Lincoln Boulevard.
Blorfroshan said his office has issued work orders to install “No Right Turn, 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. except Saturday and Sunday” signs for northbound Vista del Mar at Napoleon and Waterview Streets and Vista del Mar Lane (in this case the existing signage hours will be changed from 7 to 9 a.m. to 7 to 10 a.m.), and these signs should be installed within two to three weeks.
In addition, Blorfroshan said that the Signal Timing Section is modifying the traffic signals on Culver Boulevard at Vista del Mar, Culver Boulevard at Nicholson Street, and Culver Boulevard at Jefferson Boulevard to provide more time for:
ß northbound Vista del Mar at Culver Boulevard during morning peak hours;
ß Nicholson Street at Culver Boulevard during morning peak hours;
ß eastbound Culver Boulevard at Jefferson Boulevard during morning peak hours; and
ß westbound left turns on Culver Boulevard at Nicholson during afternoon peak hours.
A stop sign is being installed for northbound Earldom Avenue at Rees Street to provide a proper right-of-way at this uncontrolled intersection, and an intersection red curb at the southeast corner of this intersection is also being installed, said Blorfroshan.
While cut-through traffic from Vista del Mar is a serious problem, commuter traffic on Pershing Drive also contributes to the congestion, with vehicles attempting to reach Culver Boulevard.
Commuters either turn right from Vista del Mar and then left onto Pershing Drive (which dead-ends at Imperial Highway) or traffic comes from Sepulveda Boulevard down Imperial Highway and turns right at Pershing Drive.
Blorfroshan said his department has not yet received peak hour traffic counts from the Manchester Avenue/Pershing Drive intersection, or from the Rees Street/Pershing Drive intersection, which will give him a better idea of the traffic circulation at these locations.
The issue of speed bumps being installed has also been discussed, and local residents with relevant backgrounds are offering their services to form a task force to work with Blorfroshan on this issue.