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Tag Archives: Los Angeles

Top 4 Best Places to Live in LA Without A Car

Los angeles skyline of the city

Los angeles skyline of the cityMoving to LA and don’t have a car? Many areas of LA have convenient public transit stops and bike routes that make driving obsolete. According to a recent Reddit thread, here are four of the best neighborhoods to live in car-free:

Cable car on the bridge in Downtown LA.

Cable car on the bridge in Downtown LA.

The hub of LA’s public transportation, DTLA provides easy access to the majority of Metro’s Express bus lines, the Expo line, the Red and Purple subway lines, and Metro Bike Share. With so many options, who needs a car?


2. Koreatown
Koreatown in Los Angeles


This neighborhood is very walkable. It also has a Purple Line station which can move you to Downtown or Hollywood in no time and connects to the Red Line a short way away. Moreover, Koreatown is on the route of the 720 express bus which takes you through a large stretch of the city.


3. Hollywood 
Hollywood Boulevard

Hollywood Boulevard

The Red and Purple subway lines and most bus routes all have stops in this famous neighborhood. The connections are endless!


4. Santa Monica 
Breeze Bike Share in Downtown Santa Monica

Breeze Bike Share in Downtown Santa Monica

Home to the Big Blue bus, the Expo Line, and plenty of express bus lanes, Santa Monica is also a good choice for a car-free lifestyle. This area is especially good for bicycling which many miles of bike lanes, lockers and infrastructure, along with its own Breeze Bike Share system.



10 Tips to Help You Drive Safely in the Rain

Driving in rain

Rainy road with car

After just experiencing our first bout of heavy rain in 2018, we thought it'd be wise to remind all Angelenos how to drive on wet roads. This week’s storm has created some very dangerous conditions to be aware of. Because of Southern California's notoriously dry weather, rain water makes the roads slick with oil. This, paired with low visibility, can be a recipe for disaster. Here are some tips to keep in mind when driving on rainy roads:

1. Slow down

Did you know that “at speeds as low as 35 mph, new tires can still lose some contact with the roadway,” as stated by AAA. Even if it takes twice the amount of time usually spent on your regular commute, the loss of time is worth the prevention of the loss of lives.

2. Check your car before driving

Ensure that all parts of your vehicle (especially your wipers, lights, and turn signals) are functioning properly before getting behind the wheel. Also, check your tire tread to make sure your tires aren't slick.

3. Cancel cruise control

It’s all too easy to hydroplane while on cruise control. In order to be able to make the quick adjustments and reactions necessary in rainy conditions, control speed manually.

4. Turn your lights on

It's the law in California to turn your headlights on during rain, even in broad daylight. It'll help other vehicles see you.

5. Be alert

Please avoid sudden braking or sharp turning, and try to drive in the tracks of the vehicle ahead of you. Doing these will prevent accidents from happening. Additionally, steer clear of puddles as these may be disguising dangerous potholes.

6. Keep a safe distance

That being said, try to maintain a greater distance between your car and those in front (an extra 1-2 seconds) and around you. If any sudden swerving or braking does occur, this will keep you from harm's way.

7. Know what to do if a skid occurs

AAA suggests that you “continue to look and steer in the direction in which the driver wants the car to go,” and, “avoid slamming on the brakes as this will further upset the vehicle’s balance and make it harder to control.”

8. Do things one-at-a-time

Brake before continuing to turn, and only then, accelerate.

9. Don’t attempt to drive in flooded areas and check the weather

If an area seems to have very deep water, please attempt to find another route instead of taking a risk. Check the weather before driving. If rainfall seems particularly heavy, consider driving at a later time.

10. Be extra careful when driving around curves and on-ramps

These spots have proven themselves to be the most dangerous areas of road during stormy weather.

Check out this cool "How to Drive in Heavy Rain" video by Ford. 



Dashing Through LA This Holiday Season On Public Transit

Christmas lights on the classic bus model

Warsaw, Poland - December 5th, 2016: Christmas lights on the classic bus model on the street at night. The streets in a city is decorated by many interesting Christmas ornaments and lights in december. The children really like especially the Christmas old bus.

What fun it is to ride public transportation to L.A. holiday happenings like ice skating, light displays and other attractions!

Earn a spot on the nice list by keeping your carbon footprint small as you take in wintertime sights and sounds. Here’s a round-up of the merriest activities around LA you can get to using alternative transportation.

Winter Sports

Ice at Santa Monica

Trade in your sneakers for skates and hit this 8,000 square foot rink by the beach. Take the Santa Monica Big Blue Bus 2 to Downtown Santa Monica/SM Civic Center then walk a few blocks or ride the Metro Rapid Line 720 and get off at 4th/Arizona, just mere steps from the outdoor rink.

Bai Holiday Ice Rink Pershing Square

Skate surrounded by the city skyline. Multiple DTLA bus lines serve the area and Metro’s Red and Purple Line go to the Pershing Square Station.

Ride the Santa Monica Big Blue Bus then catch the Expo Line at Westwood/Rancho Park Station to get off at the 7th Street/Metro Center Station. You can also take the Metro Rapid Line 720 to 6th/Hope. Show your TAP card at the rink to save on admission.

Continue the holiday outdoor experience and jingle all the way through downtown using Metro Bike Share. The closest station is at Olive and 5th. For more station locations, click here.

Twinkle, Twinkle

LA Zoo Lights | Directions from UCLA lazoolights

Bigger, brighter and merrier this year, the zoo’s holiday tradition returns. Explore a wild wonderland of light under the stars and along the way view real reindeer, visit with Santa on select dates and enjoy seasonal treats and goodies.

Descanso Gardens Enchanted: Forest of Light | Directions from UCLA

This interactive nighttime event features a one-mile walk through colorful lighting experiences that employ sound and special effects through different parts of the botanical garden. Use the LADOT Commuter Express to reach this location from campus.

Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal CityWalk | Directions from UCLA

Make the season magical by celebrating Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. See an all-new holiday spectacle with lights and music cast against the backdrop of Hogwarts castle.

Hit CityWalk on Sunday, December 17 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. to celebrate Chanukah at Chabad of the Valley’s annual event which features a free concert.

BOLD Holidays Beverly Hills | Directions from UCLA

All December the hills are aglow with events and activities including carolers, lighting displays, a meet and greet with Santa on Rodeo Drive, music and special shopping, restaurant and hotel offerings.

Fairytales & Festivals

Holiday Trainfest and Toy Drive at Union Station | Directions from UCLA

On Saturday, December 16 from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. tour vintage rail cars, enjoy holiday music and refreshments and meet Santa at this free event. Celebrate the season and help those in need by donating new, unwrapped toys in support of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program.

Union Station is accessible via Metro Rail, Metro Bus and several municipal bus lines. Use Metro’s Trip Planner for routes and connections. Car and bicycle parking are also available on site. Enter from Vignes Street or Cesar Chavez Ave.

George Balanchine’s “The Nutcracker” at the Music Center | Directions from UCLA

Catch a world premiere of a holiday classic performed by the Miami City Ballet with a live orchestra at the Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

Image result for queen mary chillChill at the Queen Mary | Directions from UCLA

Embark on a holiday expedition at the Queen Mary’s 38,000-square foot Ice Adventure Park featuring ice skating, a zip line, ice tubing slide and other thrills. Celebrate the traditions of Christmas from six different regions with an international food fare and cultural celebration, dancing and live performances, a nightly Christmas tree lighting and more.

Happy Holidays, and cheers to staying as green as a Christmas tree by choosing sustainable transportation this season!


How to Avoid the Most Common Cycling Accidents

Road accident

Road accidentAs the cost of gasoline and the awareness about the damage of fossil fuels both increase, more and more people are deciding to use alternative modes of transportation. Given that Los Angeles benefits from bicycle-friendly weather all year long, bicycling is a common and a viable choice for UCLA students, staff and faculty.

However, many cyclists have to share the road with cars where there is no practical access to bike paths or protected lanes. This means potentially dangerous encounters with motor vehicles.

To avoid common cycling accidents, every vehicle operator should read about their state's official DMV handbook, whether they are on four or two wheels. Although cyclists do have to understand and comply with the same rules of the road as cars, they also have unique challenges. Being aware of and knowing how to avoid the three most common cycling accidents may save your life.

Right Cross Accidents

Right cross accidents occur when a cyclist, who has right of way, is struck Dangerous city traffic situationby a car exiting a side street, driveway or parking lot and attempting to turn right or left. This may also happen when a driver pulls out far enough to block the cyclist's path. This is usually caused by a driver failing to notice the cyclist coming from their left.

As a vehicle, a bicycle has full right of way when it is going straight along the side of a road. The driver, in this case, is failing to provide this right of way.

Avoiding this type of accident requires making yourself more visible to drivers. Adding a headlight to your bike or helmet and turning it on during the day is one effective measure. Wear bright colors (orange is the most noticeable color), and don't hesitate to wave, yell, use your bell, and make eye contact with drivers. Riding further to the left of the road, when possible, may also help prevent this accident.

Right Hook Accidents

Right hook accidents occur when a cyclist, riding to the right side of a car, is struck by the car attempting to turn right. In other words, the cyclist, going straight through an intersection, is hit by a car turning right at the same intersection. This can also happen when a driver deliberately overtakes a cyclist through an intersection, and then makes a right turn, wrongly assuming that they have driven a safe distance away from the bicycle.

You can avoid this type of accident by driving further left from the curb, which makes you more visible and more memorable to drivers. It can also give you headway for avoiding a collision. Pay attention to the turn signals of surrounding vehicles, and stay back if necessary.

Door Collisions

Door collisions—also called "the Door Prize"—happen when the driver of a parked car opens their door in the path of a cyclist. The cyclist, who didn't have enough notice to swerve or stop safely, collides with the open door. Door_zone_openThis is an error on the driver's part, not the cyclist, since cyclists have the same rights as cars. A parked car door opening in the way of another car would also be the parked driver's fault.

Cyclists can avoid this common accident by riding a safe distance away from parked cars. You should also pay attention to potential drivers sitting in parked cars; if you see someone there, you can swerve to the left to avoid the door potentially opening in your path.

In general, bicycle accidents happen because cyclists are smaller, and therefore less noticeable, than motor vehicles. Having a headlight turned on even during the day and wearing bright clothing are effective passive measures to increase your visibility to drivers.



New to UCLA? Here Are Some Transit-Friendly Neighborhoods

"Los Angeles, USA - June 30, 2011: The Metro Gold Line train bound for Sierra Madre Villa station and east Los Angeles County departs the Chinatown Station."

UCLA Transit Map 2017With the Expo Line extension opening last year and the ongoing Purple Line extension project, taking transit to UCLA has been never easier.

Whether you're a new student or new employee looking to move closer to campus, we've created a map to show what areas around Westwood are most accessible to bus or rail stations. From the Santa Monica Big Blue Bus (BBB) to Culver City Bus (CCB) to several Metro bus and rail lines, there are many direct transit routes coming into campus every day. As an added bonus, we've also included the median rent prices for one-bedroom, one-bathroom units to further guide you.

Plus, UCLA Transportation subsidizes transit passes for six different agencies. The BruinGO! Flash Pass for BBB and CCB, for example, only costs $33 per quarter. And as a public transit rider, you'll be able to join the Bruin Commuter Club for even more benefits, like discounted daily parking for when you need to drive in and four hours of free Zipcar usage every month.

Need help planning your commute? Contact our Bruin Commuter Services team at or (310) 794-7433.