éL: Elevated Cycleway: 2008
éL is a Product that can be implemented by city governments utilizing existing electric service poles or new structural poles when needed. eL is lighter and quicker than new wood or concrete bridge construction. Parts are rotationally molded from 100% recycled Polyethelye (LDPE) overmolded on recycled aluminum struts for support.
This Elevated Cycleway provides increased riding safety by connecting and filling gaps in a preexisting but patchy network of bicycle infrastructure. The éL is inspired by the California Cycleway of 1900, a wooden elevated bike path, built after the “bike craze” of the late 1890s, which ran from Pasadena through the Arroyo Seco to downtown Los Angeles. “In 1901 nervous cyclists found the track safer than the widest roads, for there are no horses to avoid, no trains or trolley-cars, no stray dogs or wandering children.” Ironically, Ironically thethe cycleway was torn down to make way for the nation’s first freeway, “the 110.”
Now, with LA as our laboratory we ask, “Why is a city with over 300 sunny, temperate days a year not bike friendly?” An abundance of carbon fiber accessories, hip messenger bags, and cycling shoes have not increased riding in the spirit of Amsterdam, Copenhagen, or even Portland, Oregon.
Our view: Los Angeles is a dangerous place for cyclists. LA lacks proper bike paths and lanes, and has been bisected and segmented by a labyrinthine network of freeways. The éL product system solves the problem and reconnects communities that have been bisected by poor land use decisions.