Missing the Mark: Better Intersection Design Needed Around Glassell Park Target

The stretch of Eagle Rock Boulevard between Avenue 42 and El Paso Drive frequently causes confusion, frustration, and near-misses between various road users. Poorly placed bus stops and driveways, an off-set intersection, a driveway that double as pedestrian accessibility curb cut, high demand for left turns, and an unusual yellow yield traffic signal, these are some of the issues that make the area so dreaded by motorists and pedestrians alike.

There was some hope that when Target announced it was going to replace the vacant Fresh and Easy market that fronts the intersection that the company might kick in some money to address the awkward traffic situation. The Glassell Park Improvement Association (GPIA), a local non-profit community group certainly made it clear they wanted some traffic mitigation but their wishes appear to have fallen on deaf ears as the Target has opened and no changes have been made to the area.

The most viable suggestions to bring some order to this area have included calls for a traffic signal at Eagle Rock Boulevard and Avenue 42, or a change to the signal at Eagle Rock Boulevard and El Paso Drive. We believe the area needs some re-thinking that is a little more comprehensive if the situation is to be made safer, more predictable, and more pleasant. Below is our attempt at something at is both realistic and meaningful:

TargetArea1.jpg

Eagle Rock Blvd between Avenue 42 and El Paso Dr as it looks today

TargetArea3.jpg

Same area imagined with modifications to create a “normal” intersection

The elements we propose changing include:

  1. Relocating the existing bus stop in front of Target to be south of Avenue 42. (It might also be possible to move the bus stop slightly north of El Paso Dr)
  2. Restricting parking between Avenue 42 and El Paso Dr on Eagle Rock Blvd (this would only affect a few spots in the northbound direction)
  3. Closing the 7/11 driveway on Eagle Rock Blvd closest to El Paso Dr (there would still be one 20 feet south of the closed driveway)
  4. Closing the driveway to access Target from Eagle Rock Blvd (there would still be the entrance/exit on Avenue 42)
  5. Signalizing the area to make a “normal” square intersection. Green lights on Avenue 42 and El Paso Dr would be synchronized to both be green while Eagle Rock Blvd has a red light.

The intersection functions poorly because bad decisions have been permitted one by one over the years with little regard to the surrounding context. So far, only ad-hoc solutions that address very specific problems have been applied but collectively the neighborhood has been left with what feels like at times an incoherent jumble. Our proposal would not be cheap and certainly is not the most visionary. However, we believe it reflects an investment at the scale necessary to change the area given the present circumstances that make the intersection so peculiar, confusing, and harrowing.

If you have ideas to address traffic in this area, or critiques of our design, feel free to let us know in the comments.

1 thought on “Missing the Mark: Better Intersection Design Needed Around Glassell Park Target

  1. Pingback: Today’s Headlines – Streetsblog Los Angeles

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s