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06/12/2012: "Two Rivers, Two Cities"
I've been musing a bit over the photos I took while in Denver with borrowed Bromptons, and another I snapped today on my way home from South Pasadena. I realized I had a good comparison set in these pix of riverside bike paths running through the middles of western cities.

Here's the Los Angeles River bike path in the Elysian Valley section closest to downtown that it gets for now:

Los Angeles River bike path in Elysian Valley

And here's the Cherry Creek bike path in Denver, in the vicinity of Union Station, where the warehouse district is undergoing a shift to lofts and work/live spaces, much as our own Old Bank District has done:

Cherry Creek bike path in Denver

I can't help but think that Denver has treated its central watercourse, and the bike path along it, with much more respect than LA has given its own. Denver's is a central feature of the central city, while ours looks like an afterthought.

It wouldn't be so bad if Denver weren't a sprawling automobile-centric city itself...for now. It's certainly not San Francisco or New York.

LA's administrative culture hates to admit that it could learn anything from other cities, and that's been holding us back. Still, that may be changing...we actually let a Dutch delegation show us a thing or two about urban bikeway design last year, lessons that seem to have stuck. So there's hope.

And there's Amtrak, to carry us to places where bikeways and street culture work, and we can relax and enjoy life without always battling cars and civic inertia.

I do love LA, but I've been feeling frustrated lately....

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