Breaking news from Culver City —
First the good news:
The project includes a newly paved section of the bikeway — something the rest of it desperately needs — as well as drought-tolerant landscaping, improved lighting and security cameras, and a separated pedestrian path.
That dull roar you hear is the sound of cyclists across the city cheering.
Now for the bad news:
A motion by Councilmember D. Scott Malsin would replace planned bike lanes on Washington Blvd with sharrows, and amend the bike plan to allow the council to override the approved bikeway designations based on economic and safety considerations. And in government speak, that covers just about any reason under the sun.
If the motion passes, the city wouldn’t have to commit to anything in the plan, using trumped-up safety fears, as well as real or imagined budget concerns to kill anything — or everything — in it.
That includes complaints from over-privileged NIMBYists who just don’t want bikes or walkers on their street, and can claim an unreasonable fear of hitting one as justification for killing a planned bikeway or pedestrian crossing.
And it could turn the entire plan into nothing more than a bunch of lines on a worthless piece of paper, just like L.A.’s failed 1996 plan.
The city wrote the plan, with input from the public. The Council approved it.
Now it’s up to us to make sure they stand behind it.
A room full of bicyclists and pedestrians — in other words, just about everyone who doesn’t blow through the city on four or more wheels — might help them maintain their backbone.
And make sure they didn’t have their fingers crossed when they adopted the plan.
Follow the Culver City Bicycle Coalition for future updates.
Council President Eric Garcetti offers a great photo from the L.A. River Bike Path; you can almost ignore the massive cement wall in the background. A short L.A. River bikethon is scheduled for Saturday the 26th to protest widening of the 710 Freeway, which could soon be obsolete anyway. LACBC kicks off a campaign for bike lanes eventually along the entire length of Downtown’s 7th Street. Bicycle Kitchen hosts a basic wrenching class this Saturday. Turns out L.A.’s new fire chief rides a bike; maybe we can talk him into joining us for a ride sometime — how about an LACoFD contingent for CicLAvia? Beat L.A. Marathon traffic by riding your bike this Sunday. Joe Linton interviews the Hombres of Bici Libre, aka the Bike Wranglers. Frank Peters of cdm Cyclist interviews Long Beach Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal. More on the victims of Wednesday’s Long Beach plane crash, which took the life of bike advocate Mark Bixby and four others. San Francisco sharrows are removed after being unpopular with cyclists and ignored by drivers. Nineteen elite teams are committed for the 2011 Amgen Tour of California.
Bob Mionske looks at ride liability waivers, while Lance takes on Big Tobacco. Easy to read graphic map of bicycling trends throughout the U.S. Twelve reasons to use a bike for transportation. How to balance biking and family time. A Tucson mayoral candidate has 13 traffic tickets since ’92 — including killing an 18-year old woman when he ran a stop sign. Kansas’ proposed three-foot passing law moves forward. A Minnesota cyclist gets a ticket for running a red light after getting hit by a car; I hope they relied on witnesses other than the driver to determine who ran the light. New Yorkers thank the city for three years of traffic improvements and better road safety. In response to the NYPD’s crackdown on cyclists, two council members propose flashing yellow traffic lights in some parks when they’re closed to cars. DC cyclists gain access to a popular bikeway through the Navy Yard — but not when it would do bike commuters any good. A Republican Congress might actually be good for bicycling; only if they stop saying no to everything.
Evidently, pothole patching is sufficient for London’s Olympic road course; I hope they do a better job of it than they do here. Cyclists have been victimized by fraud after visiting a popular UK-based website. Experts thought a little girl would never walk or talk after she contracted bacterial meningitis at age 6, now she’s a 10-year old road racer. A proposed Northern Ireland mandatory helmet law will drive cyclists off the road without improving safety. Bicycling offers a preview of Saturday’s 102nd Milan-San Remo classic. Taylor Phinney hopes to bounce back from a rough start to his first pro year. Apparently, tainted meat is the new get out of jail free card for cyclists accused of doping with Clenbuterol, but Human Growth Hormone will get you busted. A network of bike lanes are planned for Namibia. Now this is what I call a bike path. Eight Bangkok bicyclists will take on five other means of transportation to prove which is more efficient in rush hour traffic. In case you missed it, CNN offers a report on an 83-year old woman who escaped last week’s tsunami by bicycle.
Finally, for all you guys suffering from the problem of highly stressed huevos — and frankly, who doesn’t? — a new nose-less saddle from Taiwan promises testicles relaxing, as well as buttock sore no more. And a one-wheeled cyclist sues over tickets for violating a ban on two or three-wheeled devices on sidewalks.