The Los Angeles Department of Transportation has completed work on a new car-free pedestrian plaza just steps from the Venice Boardwalk, Councilmember Mike Bonin announced yesterday via Twitter.

"My team and I partnered with local business sponsors and LADOT to transform this area for visitors to enjoy nearby dining and community programming," reads Bonin's statement.

The plaza, which closes a segment of Westminster Avenue to automobile traffic between Ocean Front Walk and Speedway, grew out of a community driven effort launched a decade ago.

Location of Westminster People Street Plaza in VeniceGoogle Maps

"In 2011, community members Laura Lee (former owner of Zelda's) and Alex from Venice311 amongst other community members starting re-envisioning Westminster Ave. between Ocean Front Walk and Speedway to be a more cohesive gathering space consisting of tables, chairs and umbrellas," says a petition launched by Bonin's office in 2017.

A need for better pedestrian safety infrastructure along the Venice Boardwalk was made clear in 2013, after a man drove a vehicle onto Oceanfront Walk, killing an Italian tourist. After a failed attempt to gain funding through LADOT's People Street program a year later, the project eventually returned (and succeeded), by incorporating a loading zone for delivery vehicles, limiting programming to avoid impacts to neighboring residents, and implementing non-permanent furnishing that would be put out in mornings and removed in evenings.