Plaza now open after years of petitioning
By Dolores Quintana
A pedestrian plaza right next to the Venice Boardwalk has now opened.
The area that is now closed to traffic is Westminster Avenue between Ocean Front Walk and Speedway and this new plaza was the idea of the local Venice residents who campaigned for it for many years.
Urbanize Los Angeles who first reported the news, quotes the Change.org petition started to generate support for the plaza.
“In 2011, community members Laura Lee (former owner of Zelda’s) and Alex from Venice311 amongst other community members starting [sic] re-envisioning Westminster Ave. between Ocean Front Walk and Speedway to be a more cohesive gathering space consisting of tables, chairs and umbrellas,” reads the petition.
The need for this effort to improve the area’s pedestrian safety was really brought home in 2013 when a man drove his car into the paved footpath Oceanfront Walk and killed an Italian tourist.
There was an earlier attempt to fund this project through the LADOT’s People Street Program which failed, but the subsequent attempt was successful. This attempt added a delivery loading zone, removable furnishing that could be used during the day and removed at night and by putting limits on the programming that was available to lessen the impact on the neighborhood.