West Hollywood Will Make Permanent the Safety Features on Fountain Avenue

Crosswalk on Fountain Avenue (Photo by Jon Viscott, courtesy of the City of West Hollywood)

West Hollywood will make permanent a number of temporary safety features on Fountain Avenue that have resulted in a major reduction in collisions.

The City Council last night authorized making permanent the following:

  • Fountain Avenue/Harper Avenue – An enhanced crosswalk on Fountain (with flashing in-roadway lights and flashing lights on the pedestrian crossing signs that are activated with pedestrian push buttons), a median on Fountain to prohibit left turns at the intersection and only allow right turn movements from the Harper approaches, and bulb-outs on Harper to reduce the width of the travelled way.
  • Fountain Avenue/Havenhurst Drive – Bulb-outs and triangular pork-chop median islands on Havenhurst to embellish the right-turn-only signs and an enhanced crosswalk with a pedestrian refuge island on Fountain.
  • Fountain Avenue/Hayworth Avenue – Bulb-outs and triangular pork-chop median islands on Hayworth to embellish the right-turn-only signs and an enhanced crosswalk with a pedestrian refuge island on Fountain.
  • Fountain Avenue/Formosa Avenue – Bulb-outs and triangular pork-chop median islands on Formosa to embellish the right-turn-only signs and an enhanced crosswalk with a pedestrian refuge island on Fountain.
  • Fountain Avenue/Detroit Street – An enhanced crosswalk on Fountain with a pedestrian refuge island and bulb-outs on Detroit.
  • Fountain Avenue/La Brea Avenue – Extended the eastbound left-turn pocket and converted the eastbound through/right lane to a right-turn-only lane. Installed a bulb-out on the southeast corner to reduce the receiving lanes to one lane in eastbound direction. Installed a westbound right-turn lane on Fountain.

In addition to the physical improvements outlined above, four radar speed feedback signs were installed on Fountain Avenue.

Citing their success on Fountain Avenue, the city’s Public Works Department said it also plans to put in-roadway warning lights flashing yellow lights activated by a pedestrian push button) at intersections on major streets that have a marked crosswalk but no traffic signal. Those would include Santa Monica Boulevard at La Peer Drive, Hayworth Avenue, Greenacre Avenue, and Poinsettia Place.

Traffic accidents on Fountain have been a major issue for some time, with residents’ concerns heightened in September 2017 when a local resident was killed after being struck by a car while he was crossing Fountain near Formosa.

The city engaged consultant Fehr & Peers to look at the traffic safety issues on Fountain. The Fehr & Peers study reported that nearly 66% of trips on Fountain involve drivers crossing through West Hollywood.

A study of traffic accidents on Fountain from 2012 to 2016 determined that 41% of the 179 collisions were “broadsides,” meaning one vehicle crashing into the side of another as a car attempts to cross Fountain from a side street or make a turn onto it. The next largest number (21%) involved rear end collisions, and 14% were head-on collisions. City Engineer Hany Demitri has said an average of 35,000 cars each day drive along Fountain, an artery seen by residents as a neighborhood street and by others as an alternative to Sunset and Santa Monica boulevards for crosstown traffic.

A memo to the City Council from the Public Works Department includes data from the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department that shows a 42% reduction in total collisions on Fountain between the 12 months from Oct. 1, 2017 to Oct. 1, 2018 (88 total, with 41 involving injuries) and the 12 months from Oct. 1, 2018 to Oct. 1, 2019 (41 total, with 23 involving injuries), when the temporary safety features had been installed.

The Public Works Department doesn’t plan to make permanent the temporary installations at the intersection of Fountain Avenue and Havenhurst Drive because the city is considering a new traffic signal there because of the increase in traffic. Expected from construction of the residential and retail project at 8150 Sunset Blvd.

The Department also said the permanent bulb-outs would only extend into the streets that intersect with Fountain Avenue and would not extend into the roadway of Fountain Avenue because a permanent bulb-out on Fountain Avenue would interfere with the safe movement of bicycles along Fountain Avenue.

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Henry E. (Hank) Scott
About Henry E. (Hank) Scott
Henry E. (Hank) Scott is the former publisher and editor of WEHOville.com

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Larry Block
Larry Block
11 months ago

Finally some 5 years after the test pilot.

Jonathan Simmons
Jonathan Simmons
11 months ago

Oh I had no idea there was a safety “problem” on fountain.

1984, I guess was another world, and don’t know what has caused Safe Fountain to be so dangerous.

Good work elected city council members for moving so quick and jumping on this new risk before even I heard it had become so dangerous.

CITY SAFETY FIRST FOR OUR PERMANENT CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS.

BURT
BURT
11 months ago

West Hollywood is taking precautions, while Los Angeles is creating a dangerous situation: Los Angeles is closing off the Right Turn lane from Sunset Blvd to Crescent Heights Blvd. And moving the present Bus Stop over one block east to Laurel. The additional large parcel of land being created is being GIVEN to the 8150 Developers!

wehohello
wehohello
11 months ago

There need to be speed bumps on residential streets that run next to major arteries because people use them as shortcuts. A ton of dangerous thru traffic,

Michael
Michael
11 months ago

If only we can get a left turn light at SMB and Crescent Heights plus one at Fountain. Would be nice if more cops were at Norton between Fairfax and Sweetzer. People on cell phones blow through the stop signs. Also, too many people speed up and down Crescent Heights and it is so dangerous to cross without serious risk to one’s life. What else? Loud racecars and motorcycles should also be addressed. Also, anyone notice the new wooden Metro bus stop bench on SMB and Sweetzer? Stained from the urine from the guy that sleeps every night there. Metal… Read more »

Vincent Campisi
Vincent Campisi
11 months ago

I’m very happy with all the changes they have made on fountain, the changes has been very noticeable for the positive. I live one building off of fountain where we had an accident at least once a week. Now an accident is very rare and when there is one it’s because somebody made a right turn or went forward when you’re not supposed to, right turn only. Thank you city of West Hollywood for the changes.

kab1200
kab1200
11 months ago

Well, that is going to mess with Bette Davis’s statement about taking Fountain!

JF1
JF1
11 months ago

Now if we can only get the crosswalk at Elevado & Doheny!

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