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Go for a Run in Playa Vista

A tree-lined sidewalk in Playa Vista
A tree-lined sidewalk in Playa Vista
Kelsey Wyatt

Many neighborhoods around Los Angeles County are decades old and feature a mixture of old houses, renovated homes, and recently built structures. The newly built neighborhood of Playa Vista is a little different since all the condos within it are less than a decade old. Just a few years ago, most of Playa Vista was an old airfield and wetlands with a creek that overlooked the Pacific Ocean.

Today, the area just west of Lincoln and along Jefferson Boulevard is dotted with parks, trees, and shady sidewalks. Initially, the construction of the community drew some controversy due to the encroachment of the condos against the wetlands, but eventually developers agreed to keep the area west of Lincoln Boulevard undeveloped, with the majority of building occurring to the east.

With its miles of straight streets and leafy trees, Playa Vista is a perfect place to run if you're on the Westside and want a little change of scenery. The elevation changes in Playa Vista are nearly zero and most of the roads have sidewalks. Even better, the traffic in Playa Vista isn't yet to the point where running in the street is a dangerous event. Although you'll want to take care if you decide to run in the road, you'll enjoy the peaceful setting of Playa Vista wherever in the community you decide to run.

You can choose to take your time while you run along Playa Vista's streets, or the straight lines of the neighborhood may also offer the perfect spot for some sprinting. On days where you're not looking for hill work, Playa Vista is exactly where you want to be. And, if you feel up to it after your run, you can take a jog south on Lincoln Boulevard on the steep hill that passes Loyola Marymount University. There're also trails along the bluffs on either side of Lincoln where you can extend the run a little further, and get some off-road action.

Hint: Playa Vista has a little farmer's market on Saturday mornings. What better way to conclude a Saturday jog than to get some fresh fruit for a post-run refresher? The market also sets up each Wednesday evening during the summer, so perhaps a sunset run and some fresh vegetables might be the ticket?

To take full advantage of the neighborhood, you'll want to cross Lincoln at the extreme western side of Playa Vista to take a jog along the wetlands and Ballona Creek. Here's a map of Playa Vista, which is just west of the 405 FWY and is reachable via the Jefferson exit.

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