On Sunday, October 21st local non-profit LA Commons organized a free walking tour of Silver Lake put on as a part of their Found LA: Festival of Neighborhoods event. Silver Lake was recently crowned as Forbes Magazine’s Hippest Hipster Neighborhood. Though being a born and breed Angelino, I still had never set foot in the City of Silver Lake, so why not go on a free tour to check out what the hype is all about? However, what I found out from the tour transcended the “hip” title, and explored Silver Lake’s significance as a site of architectural and political history and its long-standing tradition of community engagement.
Within the confines of cars, barriers are created between the driver and the outside world, an environment rich with culture, people, and beauty. In Los Angeles, a city of over 3 million people and with a county 4 times as large, there is much to see, hear, feel, and be a part of, all of which may be easily overlooked in our point-to-point commute within these private capsules of transportation. This mini-bike tour outlines parts of downtown Los Angeles, highlighting a snippet of what this city has to offer on two wheels.
Bikes are few in the city of Los Angeles. It is hard to believe that an initiative such as the California Cycleway even included a place like Los Angeles at one point in history. Much consideration and emphasis in city and urban planning has long catered to the automobile owner because of their prevalence here. However, many measures over the years have been taken to move Los Angeles into a bicycle friendly direction (just this last week LA received a bronze level distinction as a bike friendly community from the League of American Bicyclists).