What Would a Mayor Garcetti-Appointed River EIFD do to Our Communities?

There is so much information to sift through and so many issues to be addressed these days, it is hard to follow it all. But if you care about equity and communities along the LA River, consider writing the entire Los Angeles City Council about the proposed River Enhanced Infrastructure Financing District (EIFD).

The existing EIFD which will go before City Council tomorrow, July 3, is lacking many considerations and would put an unfair tax burden on low income residents who have lived along the LA River long before it was revitalized or gentrified. Please read this thorough piece by ARC member Carrie Sutkin and write to the entire city council expressing your concern!

Then write to every member of the Los Angeles City Council! You can find their contact info here.


Many of you know the challenges our east side communities face with diesel pollution from the Metrolink Central Maintenance Facility (CMF). But did you know that a big part of that is diesel trucks coming and going, making deliveries, bringing fuel etc.? This activity is part of what the Los Angeles Times describes as a “diesel death zone”.  Part of the problem is that that big rigs are not subject to comprehensive inspection and maintenance requirements in the same way that we have mandatory Smog Check programs for cars.

SB 210 could change that, and needs our support!

Please call your state senator today (I promise, it will take fewer than 3 minutes) to say we all deserve clean air, and ask for a YES VOTE on SB 210.

(If you’re in State Senate District 24, call Senator Maria Elena Durazo 916-651-4024. If you’re unsure of who your state senator is, find out here and save that contact info to your phone!)

 Send an email to larivercee@gmail.com as soon as you’ve called so we can celebrate the sum of our efforts!


Christine & LARCEE

Diesel exhaust fills the air on our freeways

American Coots Ashore, Osprey in the Air

Many thanks to Audubon Center at Deb’s Park and all who turned out for the March Slow Ride – our first Bike Birding adventure! In true Slow Ride style, we had walkers, joggers, kids on balance bikes, and experienced cyclists sharing the path. Cindy Castaneda and Tania Romero were excellent guides, and equipped everyone with powerful binoculars so we could all get a good look at local wildlife.  

Cindy Castaneda and Tania Romero of Audubon Center at Deb’s Park orient our group on birding basics.

Cindy Castaneda and Tania Romero of Audubon Center at Deb’s Park orient our group on birding basics.

Our first bird sighting was the endearing Rainbow, a double yellow Amazon parrot (originally from Chile) who was found in the gutter on a rainy night in 2013, rescued and now living the dream. He came with his human along to enjoy the ride, the river and the birds.

Rainbow Ready for Bike Birding

Rainbow Ready for Bike Birding

Early on our way up the path, we heard a mockingbird, but did not see her high up in a native sycamore tree.  We spotted swifts in flight, groups of Mallards and American Coots, as well as many pairs of Canada Geese. Two Osprey soared over our heads. We took our time watching a Double- crested Cormorant enjoying the sun, and even more time viewing a lone Hooded Merganser .

Observing the Hooded Merganser

Observing the Hooded Merganser

Of the birds we saw, Swifts and Double-Crested Cormorants are climate threatened, and both Osprey and Hooded Merganser are climate endangered. Protecting these animals is one reason why we must work together to make Metrolink and its Central Maintenance Facility accountable for their toxic emissions, air, noise and water pollution.

Hooded Merganser on a rock, LA River. Photo credit: Grove Pashley

Hooded Merganser on a rock, LA River. Photo credit: Grove Pashley

Post Rain Rides are the Best!

Slow Ride Bike Parking at Farm LA Garden

Every bike is beautiful.

Look at the variety from the February ride…

We had a lovely ride after some morning showers yesterday. Look at the range of bikes represented: commuter, easy rider step through, cargo, kid racer, kid dirt bike, bikes with kid seats and one trailer. Thank you to all who came out and to Farm LA for hosting us and making our community a little greener through their beautiful work!

Don’t miss our March ride when we will do our first bike birding!

Pop-up rain shelter for kid compost exploration.

Pop-up rain shelter for kid compost exploration.

Metrolink Silica Cloud in LA Daily News - Let's Make Metrolink Accountable in 2019!

“There was dust over the LA River and dust was blowing toward Cypress Park, hundreds of feet from where people live,” Mills said. “I am used to seeing black clouds any time they start up their locomotives. But this time I saw a white cloud of dust, 1,000 to 1,500 feet in the air.”
— https://www.dailynews.com/2018/12/03/metrolink-train-yard-neighbors-are-still-questioning-the-giant-cloud-seen-over-the-facility-in-may-and-what-was-in-it/

As we begin 2019, we are so grateful for the in-depth, detailed article by environmental journalist Steve Scauzillo that covers the immense, white cloud we documented wafting into our communities from the Metrolink Central Maintenance Facility (CMF) silos. Please join our mailing list and be part of making Metrolink accountable their negative impact on public health in our communities!

Please read this important piece of journalism and share widely!

CMF Silo Dust - August 25, 2018

City of LA Wants More Families to be Neighbors with Metrolink CMF

It seems our Los Angeles City Council has learned nothing about the dangers of housing people not only next to freeways but beside the Metrolink Central Maintenance Facility, which in addition to gross diesel particulate pollution, has been documented dispersing silica dust from its blue silos? If this proposed development continues, what steps will the city take to protect people in the Metrolink silica shadow? Will Los Angeles finally #MakeMetrolinkAccountable?

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Metrolink CMF Celebrates First Clean Air Day CA by Idling

Metrolink has repeatedly told us that the trains near housing are only parked, empty shells. When we call to report idling in this location, we've been told it can't be happen because these trains have no engines. Metrolink needs true third party oversight now. #MakeMetrolinkAccountable

Metrolink's History of Alternative Facts: Idling Near Homes

Among the many diesel air pollution issues that we have noticed over the years, is an increase in idling engines north of Metrolink's Central Maintenance Facility (CMF). In a recent email, it was suggested that we had mistaken a locomotive with no engine for one that was idling heavily with blowers roaring. In the past, Metrolink has stated that there cannot be any engines idling here because this area is used for parked locomotives. I guess that depends on how you define parked. If my car is parked, the engine is off, no emissions flowing.

This could all be different, had Metrolink not aligned with freight to fight idling emissions limitations put forward by the SCAQMD in 2005 to protect our communities. Help us #MakeMetrolinkAccountable.

The video below offers an unedited glimpse of daily activity at the CMF, just one example of Metrolink engines idling less than 100 feet from new housing, 400 feet from pre-existing housing...right in the center of where people live.

Elysian Valley Slow Ride: April 14, 2018

Join us on foot, on wheels, by bike or simply document native flora and fauna in Gateway Park - there are many ways to enjoy the Elysian Valley Slow Ride. This monthly event seeks to bring walkers, riders and residents together in the hopes of creating a safer, more user-friendly shared path for everyone.

Details and reservations via our event page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/elysian-valley-slow-ride-april-edition-tickets-44924911620


Elysian Valley SlowRide: Saturday March 10th at 10:00am Gateway Park

Join us this Saturday and the second Saturday of every month for Elysian Valley Slow Ride - a leisurely tour of the LA River Shared Path for walkers and riders of all skill levels. If you don't feel like riding, enjoy Gateway Park and catalog its plant and wildlife through our new project on iNaturalist, Bring Back Gateway Park.

Elysian Valley Slow Ride: Bringing walkers, riders and neighbors together to keep the LA River Shared Path safe for everyone.

Elysian Valley Slow Ride: Bringing walkers, riders and neighbors together to keep the LA River Shared Path safe for everyone.

Coyote Kids Nature Adventure and Clean up in Elysian Park!

Get your hike on, enjoy one of our city's many gems and leave feeling great because you left it nicer than you found it. Coyote Kids, who joined us for the last Slow Ride and will return with some young runners another month, are hosting this lovely gathering. Details may be found on their event page.


February Slow Ride and Gateway Park BioBlitz

Join us for the Slow Ride, Saturday, February 10th and the second Saturday of each month. This year's rides begin and end at Elysian Valley Gateway Park, which we are working to revitalize by our very presence. The ride/walk departs at 10:00am, and at 11:00 we will return to Gateway to document plant and animal life in this neglected pocket park via the iNaturalist app.

Walk, ride, hang out! Bring a friend, a baked good or some fresh fruit to share.

February SLOW RIDE.jpg

POSTPONED Action: Join East Area Progressive Democrats at Glendale City Council, Tuesday, FEBRUARY 6TH

“Glendale is looking at a $500 million expansion of the Grayson Power Station that will increase emissions by 415,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, increase ozone and particulate pollution by tons, and just to generate electricity to sell to other cities. This is like adding 90,000 more gas-burning cars to Glendale roads! We have to stop the Grayson Expansion.”
— http://stopgrayson.com/

RSVP to attend the Glendale City Council Meeting to discuss alternatives.

Meeting: Tuesday, February 6, 6:00pm - 8:00pm

Glendale City Council Chambers• 613 E. Broadway, Glendale, CA 91206

Proposed Grayson Expansion on Map

Start the Year off with the Slow Ride!

Saturday, January 13th and the second Saturday of each month at 10:00am, catch up on community issues, meet like-minded folks, and enjoy a leisurely walk or ride along the Los Angeles River Shared Path. This month, local treasure, Farm L.A. will talk about their new farm which will be installed on an empty parcel donated by longtime resident Bob Berg.

As part of our continued efforts to keep an eye on the health and revitalization of Elysian Valley's first pocket park, we will start and end at Gateway Park.

2018 01 13 SLOW RIDE .jpg

December Slow Ride: Celebrate our First Year!

Please join us for the last Slow Ride of 2017, and help us celebrate one year of bringing walkers, cyclists and residents together to enjoy the LA River Shared Path and build community. Gather at the Riverdale entrance to the LA River Shared Path Saturday December 9th, 2017 at 10:00am.


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Metrolink's Long-Promised Tier 4 Not All It's Cracked Up to Be

For years, Metrolink has been attempting to assuage community concerns about persistent air quality problems by touting its long-promised Tier 4 train. These diesel locomotives are purported vaguely to be "up to 85% cleaner". Our group has consistently asked "Cleaner than what?" And hey, anyone remember Volkswagon's amazing clean diesel cars?

Continued delays - technical and otherwise - lead us to further question whether this train is really all that it is touted to be. The recent stalling of a new Tier 4 on its debut press trip only makes us more curious.


Diesel Commuter Train Technology's Days are Numbered!

Los Angeles River Communities sees the Metrolink CMF and commuter train diesel pollution as much bigger than a not-in-my-backyard problem. As this article says, "Diesel is poison." The data on Diesel train transportation indicates that commuting by diesel train is the dirtiest option for the environment and for your own respiratory and cardiovascular health.  Please enjoy this wonderful article about folks in San Francisco facing the same problems we face with Metrolink in Southern California:


Elysian Valley Slow Ride: November Edition

Come enjoy the sites and sounds of the Los Angeles River while promoting safety for all users on the shared path. Family friendly! Walkers and runners welcome! We will depart at 10:00am from the Riverdale Ave. entrance to the L.A. River shared path. If you can't get there by 10:00am, consider meeting us for some Cafecito Organico at the LA River Cafe on Ripple and Gilroy at 11:00am.

November SLOW RIDE-Proof.jpg