A Letter to the new Dodger Management re transit accessibility at Dodger Stadium. Please feel free to copy it, and send your own to Stan Kasten at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dodger Stadium is a transcendent place. Those who know baseball, know its curving wings, its view of the mountains, and its gentle sunsets.
This year is the stadium’s 50th birthday, and it should rightly be celebrated. But while the stadium itself holds up beautifully for something half a century old, the experience of getting to and from the stadium does not. Los Angeles has a vibrant and growing downtown filled with new skyscrapers, yet Dodger Stadium is still mainly geared toward the car. When the stadium was being built, we were building freeways, but today we’re building rail lines.
Guggenheim Baseball Management needs to bring Dodger Stadium into the city. For too long, it’s been an island in a sea of parking lots. The easiest fix would be to give priority lanes to the Dodger Express shuttle bus. This would enable more people to get to the stadium faster, and would improve the fan experience all around. Any revenue lost from parking fees would be gained back from improved fan satisfaction and fan attendance.
Improved pedestrian and bike facilities would also greatly enhance the game experience. The stadium has become part of the fabric of Chavez Ravine, and should be more easily accessible from the surrounding neighborhoods. People will walk to the game if you make the experience safe and pleasant.
Finally, enhanced connections with the local rail network should be explored. The city and county are there to help if the Dodgers are willing to reach out. Only a few percent of Dodger fans switching to transit would drastically improve traffic flow, and reduce the game-day impact on the local community. The layout of Dodger Stadium should be designed for Dodger fans, not just for their cars.
Help Dodger Stadium last another fifty years by reconnecting it to a changing Los Angeles.
There was some great news today for those who are looking forward to a more livable Los Angeles. Perhaps still on a post-CicLAvia high, the mayor has decided to trump his bike share initiative with a ringing endorsement of a Measure R+.
But I don’t think that’s what I’ll remember years from now. Instead, I will remember hearing a sponsorship spot on KCRW that advertised the Helms Bakery shopping complex as just a block away from the Expo Line. That’s right, a popular shopping and eating complex on the westside of Los Angeles is advertising its location by referring to a rail line that isn’t even operational yet. Amazing.
Can you imagine what will happen when Expo actually opens? I can’t wait to find out.