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This may be California's worst intersection. There are no plans to fix it.

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--- Quote from: The Ghostbuster on September 22, 2023, 10:57:20 AM ---What would any of you suggest to fix this intersection? It may be unfixable without significant property relocation.

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It wouldn't be cheap, but create a grade separation for San Vicente.  Since SV has four lanes in each direction and an extra wide median, take the two inside lanes in each direction and have them drop below grade under Fairfax and Olympic. The outer two lanes would still go through the intersection(s) as now to enable turning movements on to/off of SV, but at least one through traffic conflict would be removed from the equation.  A somewhat analagous situation exists for West MacArthur Boulevard where it goes under Peralta St and San Pablo Avenue in west Oakland:,-122.280096,204m/data=!3m1!1e3?entry=ttu

Plutonic Panda:
I traveled through here every day. Most of the locals get it right it’s the tourist that fuck it up. Though I’m not mad at them for that I understand that some people simply just don’t realize how quick the intersection will back up.

I’m not sure what a timing of lights would do other than just shift the problem to somewhere else.

My ideal solution would be to remove street parking on Fairfax, and convert that to a travel lane. Construct parking garages to substitute for the removal of street parking. Remove the middle turn lane and restrict turns except at intersections. Then add a two-way cycling on one side and bus lanes on each side. Construct the small median to plant trees.

Yes, my plan would require acquisition of property, but no demolition other than trees. Plant new trees, and thank where, in the future, they would grow and become big again as they are now.

Of course, that will never happen.

Only other solution I could think directly addressing the intersection would be a massive roundabout, but we don’t seem to understand how to use those, and I’m not sure that would really fix any sort of congestion. My first proposal would alleviate, but not solve it and it would add extra forms of transportation as an alternative to cars.

So the best solution would be to leave it as it is, because if anything were to be done, it would simply be to remove parking lanes and convert them into bus lanes like LA loves to do.


--- Quote from: webny99 on September 22, 2023, 12:51:38 PM ---There's a somewhat similar configuration in Brighton, NY, at the intersection of Monroe Ave, Elmwood Ave, and Winton Rd. It's known locally as "Twelve Corners". Satellite view here. I'm not aware of any significant or recurring congestion problems at this junction. However, there are a few prohibited turn movements. (WB Monroe: no left turn on Winton. SB Winton: no left turn on Elmwood. EB Elmwood: no left turn on Monroe)

The main difference in the LA example is the extreme angle at which San Vicente crosses Olympic. Ideally, the mid-intersection markings would be removed, but that might be impractical because of the sheer size of the intersection.

Even so, I don't see why it creates such a bottleneck unless there's something else downstream that backs traffic up into the intersection. Is there a specific turn movement that causes issues?

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It appears that there are arlready some prohibited turns at this mess. In looking at the GSV, it looks like left turns are prohibited from SB Fairfax to EB Olympic, NB Fairfax to WB San Vicente, WB San Vicente to SB Fairfax, left turns from Olympic to SV are prohibited (which makes sense for a 315-degree turn), and from EB SV to EB Olympic.

A lot of good ideas already posted.  Good job guys.

Fairfax Ave widening.  Absolutely.  The whole street maintains two lanes of traffic in each direction, except between Olympic and Venice.  If this section were either widened or parking restrictions put in place to provide two lanes of traffic in each direction (ideally at all times, minimally at extended rush hours 7-9:30 and 3:30 - 7) it would do wonders for that street.

[The portion between Pico and Venice was actually widened about 35 years ago.  I remember the old configuration was similar to parallel streets like Orange Grove and Hayworth.  Because of the traffic volume parking on one side was prohibited at all times, so that they could comfortably fit one lane of traffic each way.  But it was very bad.  The widening to the current configuration is only slightly helpful, done to match the width of the Olympic-Pico section, which is how I remember it for most of my childhood.  Basically, the parkway (grass between sidewalk and curb) was removed to widen the street without the need for eminent domain.  Given the traffic, though, figuring out how to get two lanes in both directions would be critical.]

Grade separation of San Vicente here (and at La Brea Ave) would be very helpful.  [The intersection with La Brea isn't that bad, but the street has to go down a steep hill on both sides, so an actual bridge should be easier for traffic. In fact the old Pac Electric Ry crossed over on a bridge here for that reason, to avoid the steep hill.]

But if that is not feasible, than an actual plan that might work would be a street minimization of SV, the least traffic heavy of the three streets.  Widen the median and get rid of its traffic capacity between Wilshire and Venice.

This would require some extensive work to really make it work.

A left turn from Burton Way to Sherbourne should be implemented to help get some Burton Way traffic toward 3rd street in a better way.  The block of Sherbourne between Burton and 3rd should be one-way northbound.

Most of the continuing traffic should be encouraged to make a left on Wilshire*.  Of the three lanes eastbound, the left two should force a left on Wilshire, with only one lane of traffic continuing east of Wilshire.  That remaining one lane should be forced to make a right on Carrillo.  Likwise, in the westbound direction, SV is only one traffic lane between Carrillo and Wilshire (with some widening at the Wilshire corner to account for waiting at the signal).   SV will be one lane and one way WB between Fairfax and Carrillo.  Barrows would be one way eastbound.

SV is also one lane and one way WB between Olympic and Fairfax.  This segment of street will be forced to make a right at Fairfax with a stop sign.  This eliminates the signalized intersection of SV/Fairfax.

SV will be one lane in each direction between Olympic and Venice.  Westbound, all SV traffic is forced to make a right turn onto Genessee (which will be one way northbound) and can reach Olympic at the signal at Genessee.  (THis of course means that SV is one way EB between Olympic and Genessee.) These steps eliminate the signalized intersection of SV/Olympic.

When all is said and done.  We have a regular intesection of Olympic and Fairfax, that hopefully maximizes Fairfax's capacity as discussed in the first paragraph.  SV still exists, but east of Wilshire, while it is still very wide median, it will only carry one lane of traffic in each direction and will be broken in such a way that it does not cross Olympic/Faifax directly.  WB traffic on the single lane SV will make a right on Genessee, a left on Olympic, and a right on Carrillo, and a left on SV to continue in this manner.  EB traffic will make a right on Carrillo, left on Olympic, and then a right on SV (at Orange Grove) to continue.  But given that the traffic patterns are no longer as direct, a lot of SV's traffic will be distributed amongst other streets in the area and fewer will need to travel this route.  Other than SV, most large streets in the area form a grid, and most of the traffic will follow the gridded streets and no longer take advantage of the SV diagnoal, east of Wilshire.

NYC eliminated much of Broadway becuase of the traffic effect at the crossing of avenues.  Broadway's traffic simply was dispersed amongst other parallel streets.  The same can happen with the eastern section of SV.

The above will never happen.  The underpass is more feasible.

* Very similar idea of the other SV/Wilshire intersection in Brentwood.


--- Quote from: Max Rockatansky on September 22, 2023, 09:09:43 AM ---Trouble fixing anything on Olympic is that it isn’t CA 26 (ii) anymore.  Without state money that corridor isn’t getting a big project.  The corridor of Olympic was interesting given it more or less started out with a similar building push to the likes of the Ramona Expressway.  The project became increasingly inadequate as it dragged on and was replaced by the Santa Monica Freeway.

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Depending on the functional class of the roads, it could be eligible for federal funding.


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