Biking Around Echo Park Lake Was Never Legal, City Says

A Parks spokesperson says it would take approval by the Parks Commission to change that.

Should bike riding be allowed on the new Echo Park Lake path?

Echo Park-Silver Lake Patch

Most chimed in with "Sure."  Some even remembered doing so on the old Echo Park Lake path, removed during the current rehabilitation.

This comment was typical:

I grew up in Echo Park and have very fond memories of riding my bike around the lake with my cousins.

But, according to Andrea Epstein of the Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, people riding on the path were doing so illegally.

In an email she pointed us to Los Angeles Municipal Code Section 63.44B16 that reads:

No person shall drive or ride any cycle or vehicle, whether powered by a motor or human power, except on paths, roads or drives designed and provided for such purposes

A similar ordinance governs throughways designated as trails.

According to Epstein, it would take a vote by the commissioners of the Recreation and Parks Department to change that.

Epstein pointed to Lake Balboa in Encino as an example of where a special lane for bikes is designated.

A motion could conceivably be initiated by a community group, she added.

The new path planned for Echo Park Lake would be made of a "pervious" material, which could present special issues.

Readers commenting on Echo Park-Silver Lake Patch represented a range of views on how to solve the problem.

One reader suggested a completely different path be constructed for the bikes.

Others thought a commited lane would do the trick.

Still, others thought a lane OUTSIDE the park would be the way to go.

What do you think?

Should bikes be brought back to Echo Park Lake?

Will Campbell September 14, 2012 at 03:13 PM
Personally, I'd like to see an on-street Class II Bike Lane surround the entire park, rather than a separate outer bike path (like the one at Balboa Lake) in the park. Having said that, there were times in the past when I'd detour my bike onto the water's edge path and slowly ride around Echo Park Lake as a respite/breather from wherever I was going on-street. I had no idea I was breaking the law. One could argue that the appropriate signage prohibiting bikes from the path around Echo Park Lake -- and any city park for that matter -- should be required.
Joan Kramer September 14, 2012 at 04:40 PM
I both bike and walk and would prefer they are kept separate. I always knew it was illegal at the lake and it was one reason I liked walking there. I hope bikes can have their own space -- on the streets where they belong. I have stopped biking on the LA River because I've been almost knocked over by speed bikers. Please keep the path free of speed. And yes, I am 65 years old and a 36 -year resident of Echo Park. I have felt the unfriendliness towards old people recently.
Kathleen September 14, 2012 at 05:32 PM
I totally support bike riders in any way I can, but my son was almost run over on the old path around the water by some cyclists who just didn't see him, it was actually really terrifying and a very close call! So I'm not sure that a dedicated lane on the same path as pedestrians would be safe enough. Hopefully someone will have a thoughtful solution so that both bikes and pedestrians can enjoy equal access to what promises to be an amazingly revitalized and much needed park!
EMI SHIINA September 14, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I strongry agree with Will. I would have ridden out side of the park if it is safe to ride Glendale. ( I hope they can do a good bike pass around freeway entrance before the Temple. ) When I was riding inside of the park, I was very slow and carefull. Why can't we share and just have a speed limit of 5 or something inside of the park? And I hope there is a way to teach young fixers or bad manner cyclists how to ride bike. They give us (all cyclists) bad name.


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