The Eastsider L.A. has been following efforts to “calm” Echo Park traffic at the spot where an environmentalist was killed nearly six years back while trying to cross the street. Instead of placing a traffic light at Sunset Boulevard and Portia Street, however, this week the city went with those flashing, street-level lights that we first noticed on Glendale's Brand Boulevard some years back. (There's also a strip of these Christmasy lights on Glendale Boulevard below the Sunset Boulevard traffic bridge.)
Today's Eastsider quotes a local's harrowing account of trying to work those flashers on Echo Elysian Forum: “I had to use it twice, both times practically no one slowed and I
was almost run over by a bus.”
The Portia Street crosswalk is located in a pedestrian no-man's land that's roughly midway between red-green lights at Laveta Terrace and Douglas Street, and can be a bear to traverse even during non-rush hour periods. Peds are best advised to keep swiveling their heads to spot oncoming cars — otherwise they might next be seeing quite another kind of flashing lights.