route adjustment

One of the worst sections of my ride home is the area between Holmby Park and the east side of Beverly Hills. Traffic sucks, the roads suck, and I always feel as though I’m heading really out of my way to get wherever I’m going. My usual route takes me down Comstock, onto the sidewalk along Wilshire. Depending on my mood, I’ll sometimes cut up Whittier to Elevado and take that as far east as Canon before cutting south to Burton Way. It’s not great, but it feels safe and keeps me out of the mash-up that is the intersection of Santa Monica and Wilshire.

Today, though, I picked a new way home (see map for updated route): Cut south on Beverly Glen, cross Wilshire, and swing down to Santa Monica Blvd. You’re still left to contend with the incredible disappearing bike lane, but as long as you’re intending to merge onto Santa Monica South – which I was and usually am – the road is wide, well-paved, and generally rideable. From there, I split lanes through heavy traffic until things opened back up east of Rexford.

It’s not perfect, but it feels like a quick way to push past the worst of Beverly Hills traffic, especially at rush hour.

Anyone have any advice on negotiating that stretch? Please check out the map and some of the thinking behind it.

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2 responses to “route adjustment

  1. Okay, this I can help you with since you’re riding through my hood — I live just off Santa Monica and Beverly Glen.

    Your route’s not bad, but consider this instead:

    1. From your starting point, take Hilgarde south to Westholme; turn left onto Westholme, and follow it south to Santa Monica Blvd. Westholme is one of the few designated bike routes that actually makes sense — a nice, quiet back street with little traffic. (Right now, they’re doing construction work just before S.M. Blvd, but you should be able to get around it; if not, just right another block west to Manning to get on S.M. Blvd.)

    2. Follow Santa Monica until the Incredible Disappearing Bike Lane ends, then take a lane — or the sidewalk — through the Block of Death, then take the first right onto S. Moreno Dr.(towards Beverly Hills High School).

    3. Ride two blocks south, and take the second left onto Durant Drive. Follow Durant for one block, then take a slight right onto Charleville Blvd.

    4. Ride east on Charleville; you’ll have to deal with stop signs on every block, but traffic isn’t bad — just be careful at the busier intersections, such as Beverly Drive.

    5. Keep riding east until you reach your choice of Doheny, Weatherly, Almont or La Peer Drives, then turn left. (Personally, I like La Peer, but any one of them should do.) I know Doheny and La Peer have stop lights at S.M. Blvd; I’m not sure about the other two, but I’d assume they do, as well.

    6. Just ride north until you connect with your original route on Burton Way.

    This route will allow you to miss most of the rush hour traffic, and other than the Block of Death, you won’t have to ride any major streets without a bike lane.

  2. Sweet! Thanks for the tips – Hilgard to Westholme sounds like a great idea. I was all set to put it into the map, but you beat me to it – for which I’m even more grateful.

    As for the Block of Death: It sucks, but I actually like the feeling of splitting lanes in traffic. Probably not the safest plan in the long run, but it’s a rush to pedal through stopped traffic.

    Thanks again.

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