Los Angeles Sidewalks in Need of a Makeover

Sidewalk showdown

Los Angeles plans to redo its grounds with a hefty $1 billion dollar budget. This stems from an Americans Disabilities Act lawsuit filed 5 years ago by multiple unhappy residents. The plaintiffs expressed their dissatisfaction for the city’s old and crumbling sidewalks. They stated that the walkways were not accessible for the disabled. As stated in the lawsuit “despite its awareness for the past several years of the city’s broken system of sidewalks and consequential denial of meaningful access for persons with mobility disabilities, the city has failed to develop or implement a plan to effectively address the problem.”

LA will spend over three decades repairing the walkways and curbs all throughout the city. The city plans to spend around $30 million a year. According to an estimate done by The Bureau of Street Services, roughly 40% of the city sidewalks needs fixing. “This settlement addresses all the sidewalks that are causing damage and the ones that can cause damage,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. Attorney Guy Wallace who represented the plaintiffs stated it was “the largest disability access settlement in U.S. history”.

Residents of the city consider this a big win, explaining that it will not only help the safety of the disabled, but will be beneficial to other residents such as young mothers with strollers and the elderly. Mayor Garcetti stated that the newly built walkways will help to improve “access, public safety, increase property values and neighborhood pride. “By making the City’s sidewalks and crosswalks accessible, this settlement will make it much easier for persons with mobility disabilities to get to and use government facilities, to find or get to jobs and workplaces, to go shopping, to go to the doctor, to participate in community life, and to be with their friends and families,” Attorney Wallace explained. The complete terms and conditions are still to be approved by a federal judge.