Morning Links: Backlash to Palisades road diet, shooting of unarmed Castaic man protested, and bike events

No surprise.

The proposal to install a road diet on Temescal Canyon Road, with a parking protected bike lane on the uphill side and a buffered lane downhill, ran into opposition at the Pacific Palisades Community Council last week. (“Proposal to Take Away Downhill Temescal Lane;” right column, bottom of first page)

People tend to be very defensive of their traffic lanes — almost as much as they are parking. And anything that promises to improve safety usually takes a back seat to fears of traffic congestion, warranted or not.

Hopefully, local residents will come around once the benefits of the project are actually explained.

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A group of mostly African-American civil rights leaders is stepping up to protest the shooting of an unarmed bike rider by sheriff’s deputies in Castaic Tuesday night.

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The Ovarian Psychos’ 5th annual Clitoral Mass ride rolls tomorrow for riders who identify as female.

The LACBC is teaming with Just Ride LA for this month’s Sunday Funday Ride in DTLA on Sunday, regardless of how you identify.

Also on Sunday, Finish the Ride and Velo Studio are hosting the free community ride Tour de Griffith Park: An Introduction to Safe and Fun Riding.

West Hollywood will have a soft-launch of their new smart-bike bikeshare system on Tuesday.

Long Beach will celebrate the opening of a new parking protected bike lane on Artesia Blvd this Thursday.

And don’t forget the return of CicLAvia to iconic Wilshire Blvd next Sunday, albeit in a shorter version due to construction of the Purple Line.

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Megan Guarnier has gone from doing risk assessment in nuclear plants to America’s best hope for cycling gold in Rio; she describes the road race as the hardest single-day course she’s seen, stray dogs and slick surfaces included.

Cycling Weekly looks at the favorites in the Olympic men’s road race, none of whom are American.

Australia’s Rohan Dennis was nearly out of the games before they started after crashing on a bad surface on the road course.

The good news is, there’s less doping in the women’s peloton than in the men’s; the bad news is, there’s doping in the women’s peloton.

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Local

The LA Times looks at the popularity of fixies, saying they’ve gone from hipster status symbols to being found everywhere. Although I question whether the too-frequent stories of cyclists injured after recklessly blowing through stop signs in front of oncoming traffic results from the inability of beginning fixed-gear riders to safely stop their bikes.

Atwater Village residents demand the removal of flood control barriers along their stretch of the LA River bike path, after the barriers have been removed everywhere else.

CiclaValley concludes his list of the ten most essential climbs in the LA area.

 

State

A Santa Ana man told police he was shot in the chest when he struggled with an armed gang member trying to steal his bike. Once again, if there’s a weapon involved, just let your bike go. Your life is worth more.

A new UC Riverside study concludes that low income bicyclists who ride out of necessity are largely ignored by SoCal communities, where bike paths and policies favor recreational and upper-income riders.

Salinas ranks among the worst in the state for pedestrian and bike safety.

San Francisco’s mayor announces increased efforts to improve safety on the city’s streets in the wake of recent deaths and criticism by bike advocates.

 

National

A new premium Strava feature will tell your friends exactly where you are so they can meet up, or find you if you don’t get home on time.

An off-duty Oklahoma officer is credited with saving a bike rider from being shot by an admitted killer.

The family of a bike messenger who was killed by a Chicago tour bus have filed suit, alleging the driver blew through the red light.

A Staten Island mom uses Facebook to get her son’s stolen bike back.

The New York Times talks to the hero bicyclist who saved a young man from jumping off the George Washington Bridge.

A New Jersey mountain bike trail is the latest to be sabotaged by anti-bike terrorists who planted barbed wire, broken bottles and boards embedded with screws and nails along the path. The scumbags who did this deserve to have the book thrown at them. But probably won’t, since they’re only targeting people on bicycles.

A full 40% of people in Baton Rouge LA say they would consider riding to work if the city had dedicated bike paths.

 

International

A transportation consulting firm says the cyclists cities should target are the ones who don’t ride yet.

Vancouver’s new bikeshare system has proven more popular than expected just two weeks after its launch.

Bighearted Victoria, Canada police pitch in to ship a boy’s stolen bike back to Alberta after it was stolen while his family was visiting the city.

The mayor of Edmonton, Canada says the racist rants telling a black bike rider to get off the street demonstrates the need for better infrastructure. It also demonstrates the need for fewer racist drivers.

There’s a special place in hell for the Ontario, Canada jackass who dragged a dog behind an ebike; fortunately, the dog is okay, while the driver faces charges including DUI.

Toronto drivers didn’t even wait for a new bike lane to be finished to before they started parking in it.

An Ottawa, Canada woman filed an assault complaint with the police after a male rider slapped her ass for riding too slow. Seriously, let other people ride their own way. And keep your damn hands to yourself.

Speaking of a special place in hell, that goes double for whoever stole the bike used by a British father to take his seriously ill five-year old daughter out for rides, and raise money to fight the disease that will eventually take her life.

The Guardian recounts the tale of bikeshare inventor Luud Schimmelpennink, and the failure of his hometown of Amsterdam to embrace the idea.

Romania wants to install new cycling routes to encourage bike tourism, including bike paths, public roads where cars are banned, and streets where traffic is limited to 18 mph.

Hyerabad, India will install a 300 station, 10,000 bike bikeshare system along the city’s railways.

The Israeli border guards caught on video confiscating a Palestinian girl’s bicycle and tossing it into the bushes say they did it to protect her. Sure, let’s go with that.

 

Finally…

Forget cornering or descending; the most important cycling skill you need is riding the right speed to catch Pokémon. Your next bikeshare helmet could be made of paper.

And a clunky looking bike bell promises to turn any bike into a smart bike; a smart rider is another matter.

 

3 comments

  1. Jay Williams says:

    I am willing to bet that most of those “fixies” are actually single speeds. I ride single speeds myself and have had multiple people ask me about my “fixie” while riding.

    • bikinginla says:

      I hope so, to be honest. I’d much rather see inexperienced riders learn to ride single speed, with brakes, before going fixed once they get the hang of it and build up some leg strength.

  2. Ralph says:

    I had 2 fixies. First was a bit too small and the second ended up getting stolen before I left the country. The reason I tried the fixed gear was to build up my cadence to help with knee pain. I had heard that they can help with cadence. They did. I now spin at a higher rate. The side benefit for me was reduced knee pain in everyday life. I think it helped strengthen the muscles supporting my knees. Then I found that I really enjoyed the ride and liked the fixie better in the rain than my bikes with rim brakes. BTW YMMV.

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