Have you biked or walked the path along San Fernando Road in Sylmar lately? Have you noticed the wild bushes, growing litter and/or horse droppings on the path? I have and I think it is time to revitalize the path to allow Sylmar’s true beauty to shine through.

As a resident of Sylmar,  I am starting a community group, “Sylmar’s Kimochi ii” (Sylmar’s Good Feeling), to beautify the bike path that runs along the railroad tracks in Sylmar (from San Fernando and Roxford to San Fernando and Hubbard), so it can be a prime place for family, fun, and fitness in L.A. 

About a year ago, I moved back to the USA. From 2005 to 2013, I taught English in Central America, South America and Asia. During my time in Seoul, South Korea, I discovered the joy of urban biking. Seoul provided free bicycles on which to enjoy the biking paths that were lined with freshly planted flowers, cherry blossom trees, mini-park areas, and flowing streams. Each time I pedaled through the megacity, I found a place to escape the hectic pace of urban living and breathe a little more easily. Thus, upon returning to my family home in Sylmar, I began walking and biking along the path near the Metrolink Station. However, I often noticed trash, horse droppings and unkept landscape. I have contacted MyLA311, Councilmember Felipe Fuentes, Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office, and L.A. Public Works President Kevin James. But the situation has not improved; it has worsened.

I recently participated in neighborhood beautification days in Pacoima and Sylmar with Neighborhood Housing Services. Flowers and trees were planted along the sidewalk as well as houses were painted. These activities showed me that I am not the only person that desires a visually pleasing landscape in L.A.; in fact, it is hard to find any Angeleno who wants to live in a lackluster location. Now is the time for Sylmar’s bike path to reach its full potential as a destination for family, fun and fitness. 

I have practical ideas for improving Sylmar’s bike path (for example, place trash cans at bus stops, a mural in front of the Metro Station, succulent flowers that enjoy heat and need little water, an art exhibit space, a little library). However, I cannot do it alone. Volunteers must be gathered, grants must be awarded, blueprints must be envisioned. Recently, I contacted Sylmar Neighborhood Council and Pacomia Beautiful. I have been encouraged to start a  group on my own, contact Sylmar elected officials, and work with local community groups. 

Won’t you join me to help improve the bike/walk path in Sylmar.  

A meeting will be held  at 10 a.m. on Saturday, August 16, in Sylmar at the benches  in   in Sylmar Park near the fire station to discuss how to  move forward in creating a good feeling in the neighborhood through “Sylmar’s Kimochi ii.” Contact :.Ms_MSimpson@hotmail.com