Locals are gearing up for tonight’s presentation of a new parking and traffic proposal for Griffith Park that aims to ease traffic and circulation around the massive 4,300 acre park.
The presentation, held at Riverside Drive’s Friendship Auditorium at 7 p.m., is hosted by the Department of Recreation and Parks and Councilmember David Ryu’s office. Attendees will hear more about the plans for much of Griffith’s free parking to be consolidated at the base of the park, with shuttles ferrying folks up to the further reaches of the green space. The hope is to have people utilize the free buses to reach places like the Western Canyon and the Griffith Observatory. Early proposals indicate that people could still park closer to those attractions, but they would have to pay for the privilege.
That idea has rankled some, including Zachary Rynew, the founder of bike activist blog CiclaValley. “While Mr. CiclaValley isn’t normally too opposed to parking fees, this will hurt locals who use the park regularly,” Rynew wrote in a post on the CiclaValley site. “Also, somewhere in the park’s charter it was stated that the land should be free to patrons.”
Rynew is also concerned about the increased number of shuttles moving around the park, which he thinks will endanger cyclists and pedestrians. He’s also not too keen on shuttles bringing people to the “Hollywood Sign Viewing Area,” which Griffith officials hope will cut down on tourists congesting up the canyons for the perfect selfie. Rynew thinks the bus stops and tight turns will also put walkers and bikers at risk.