Hal Bastian of the Downtown Center BID posted the following message last night on the New Downtown yahoogroup. I hope he doesn't mind me blogging it here. The "ode" he mentions refers to a poem a listmember wrote about the difficulties of hailing cabs downtown.
For those of you that don't know, I'm working on a plan to change our
culture here in Downtown so that you can hail a cab for a short trip.
Taxis generally wait for hours in a line making no money at Downtown hotels.
All they want is a fare to LAX.
Right now there are many obstacles, not the least of which is that fact that
a cab would get a huge ticket if it stopped in a "No Stopping" zone (all of
Downtown between 7-9am or 4-7pm) to pick you up if you tried to hail one.
After 7pm, we could look for a taxi in a Dash bus zone, since Dash stops at 7pm.
I'll fix that later!
If we make Downtown more taxi friendly, we can hail them and the operators
can make more money doing short trips on a natural meter (no zones--they are
too hard to understand) than they can making no money for hours.
I am working with the City to exempt taxis from no stopping zones while they
are actively picking up and dropping off fares, like every other city in
Then, we'll have to teach people how to hail a cab!
Taxis can connect the city day and night. The taxi drivers will make more
money and we will have a great way to get around. We'll be better able to
patronize our restaurants and bars, Staples Center, etc.
Thanks for the ode! Wish me luck.