Cyclists, runners calling for permanent restrictions on cars at Griffith Park

Irene Cruz Image
Sunday, July 3, 2022
After cyclist death, Griffith Park temporarily closes road to cars
Cyclists and runners are hoping the city can make permanent a pilot program which closes a section of Griffith Park Drive to vehicle traffic.

GRIFFITH PARK, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A section of Griffith Park Drive was closed to vehicle traffic recently as part of a pilot program designed to protect cyclists, joggers and equestrians.

The closure had long been in the works but was accelerated after a cyclist was killed in the park by a suspected drunk driver this April.

While the program is only temporary for now, many cyclists gathered at the park this weekend to celebrate the closure and call for the city to make the change permanent.

They said vehicles fly through the park's roads at unsafe speeds, making it difficult for runners, cyclists and horse riders.

"You have to be on your toes," said Scott Lubbers, a frequent runner at the park. "As a runner, we run against traffic so we can see traffic coming onto us. If a car's coming around a curve and they don't see you and they're taking that curve real tight, you have to jump out of the way, and jump into the dirt."

About three-quarters of a mile of Griffith Park Drive is closed to cars on the north end near the 134 Freeway, between Travel Town to the Mount Hollywood Drive turnoff.

The topic of safety at the park received new attention after the death in April of a 77-year-old cyclist along Crystal Springs Drive.

Andrew Jelmert, 77, was hit and killed by a suspected drunk driver just as he was about to finish a 67-mile bicycle training ride.

READ ALSO | Hundreds of cyclists gather at Griffith Park to remember Andrew Jelmert, cyclist killed in hit-and-run

A group of cyclists gathered to remember one of their own recently killed in Griffith Park by an alleged hit-and-run driver.

A petition on is also calling for the city to restrict vehicle traffic at the park.