Last Monday evening it took me half an hour to drive from Lincoln Boulevard to Centinela Avenue on Pico Boulevard.

The Santa Monica Freeway was my first choice but I could see that it was jammed so I took Pico instead. It was jammed, too, bumper to bumper. It was awful. This experience made me curious about the population density of Santa Monica and when I got home I looked it up.

According to the 2000 Census, Santa Monica had 10,179 people per square mile ranking 121 on a list of 125 most densely populated communities in the U.S. The 2010 Census puts us at 10,664 people per square mile. None of us can be surprised it has gone up. We all know from traffic we’re moving up the charts!

And it’s only going to get worse. There are almost 1,000 condos planned for the old trailer park and the old Grammy building on Pico combined and who knows what else is in the pipeline. How bad does traffic have to get before the City Council stops approving all this development? They point to LUCE (Land Use and Circulation Element) and fantasize that the coming light rail system will solve all our problems. It won’t.

I don’t understand what LUCE is all about. I understand traffic and it sucks.


Richard Orton

Santa Monica

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.