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Reconfigured Downtown Culver City Is Safe And Thriving
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Reconfigured Downtown Culver City Is Safe And Thriving

With its wonderful mix of historic buildings, boutiques, theaters, galleries and restaurants, Downtown Culver City has long been one of Southern California’s most charming neighborhoods. Now, the area has been reconfigured to ensure that it is also one of the safest and most successful, both during the pandemic and after.

With indoor restaurants shuttered, many cities and neighborhoods have temporarily extended patio dining to sidewalks and parking areas. Culver City’s Downtown Business Association has taken it one step further, implementing permanent changes that have not only increased safety, but have dramatically improved the area’s thriving scene.

According to DBA president Darrel Menthe, as soon as it became apparent that outdoor dining would be essential to the survival of the downtown area as we know it, Downtown Culver City businesses joined together with City Council and staff to boldly, and with lightning speed, transform the area, making a virtue of necessity and creating a thriving outdoor plaza in the midst of a city in crisis.

The westbound lane of traffic on Culver Boulevard has now been closed to most vehicle traffic, with the majority of the street available to restaurants for radically expanded outdoor dining areas. One lane, however, remains reserved for buses, bicycles and emergency vehicles — part of Culver City’s commitment to re-imagining mobility and alternative modes of transportation. Meanwhile, Main Street has been entirely closed to vehicle traffic and is fully open for restaurants, businesses and the Tuesday Farmers Market to safely serve and engage with customers.

“Even after the pandemic eventually ends and society is able to return to ‘normal,’ the impact of this transformation will endure. We will have saved the existing business community, and we can be sure that Downtown Culver City will be forever changed and improved,” says Menthe.

“Our ability to work with the Culver City DBA and City departments to get additional street and outdoor dining space has been critical to the survival of our business during this extended period of social distancing restrictions,” says Bill Sasiela, co-owner of Piccalilli, which is located on downtown’s Main Street. “It was tremendous to see how quickly everyone involved worked together to make this a reality for businesses such as ours.”

Downtown Culver City is located just south of the 10 Freeway and east of the 405, between the intersection of Culver and Washington Blvds and Madison Ave.

For more information about Downtown Culver City and a list of open restaurants and other businesses, visit www.downtownculvercity.com

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