A group of Westside residents outraged over “road diets” imposed over the summer in Playa del Rey and more planned in the city formally announced a campaign Thursday to recall Councilman Mike Bonin.
At a news conference outside Venice Grind Coffee Co. in Mar Vista, residents wearing “Got traffic?” shirts said removing Bonin from office is their best bet to solve an array of problems created by traffic lane reductions and new bike lanes on major streets.
“Mike Bonin would like to make you think this is actually about safety,” said organizer Alexis Edelstein, adding that accidents have actually increased since the roads were reconfigured in June.
Venice Grind owner Demetrios Mavromichalis, a past Bonin supporter, told the crowd he and other business owners have been detrimentally affected by the road changes.
“The only thing Mike’s going to listen to is a recall,” Mavromichalis said. “Now they call me a traitor, well you know what? You betrayed me, you betrayed your whole community, you betrayed everybody that voted for you and, if you pulled this crap before the election, you would’ve never gotten elected.”
Road diet controversy
Bonin, 50, was elected in March to a second term representing the city’s 11th District, which includes Venice, Westchester, Playa del Rey and Playa Vista.
He faced a wave of backlash when the city Department of Transportation removed 9.4 miles of traffic lanes on Vista del Mar, Culver Boulevard, Jefferson Boulevard and Pershing Drive as part of an initiative to prevent pedestrian deaths.
The changes created gridlock and public outcry, triggering two lawsuits…
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