Morning Links: New bike lanes go nowhere in Echo Park, and Laura Chick endorses Joe Bray-Ali in CD1

The more I think about it, the madder I get.

Los Angeles took what appears to be a small step forward by installing bike lanes on dangerous Glendale Blvd in Echo Park as part of a repaving project over the weekend.

Three whole blocks, that is. With no plans to extend them in any direction.

In other words, yet another in LA’s dystopian non-network of disconnected bike lanes that don’t go anywhere or connect to anything.

They just are. Which may be very Zen. But it’s also just this side of worthless.

More troubling is why.

Why not extend bike lanes further south on Glendale to Downtown and north to Silver Lake? Apparently that would involve far more than restriping the road.

“Extending bike lanes north would require Caltrans involvement as [Glendale Boulevard] becomes a State Highway (Route 2) north of Berkeley,” Fremaux explained. “On either end, the existing width would not allow for the extension without removing lanes and/or parking. Exploring such an effort is not in our near-term workplan.”

Let that sink in.

They’re more than happy to install a bike lane as part of a repaving project, but only as long as it doesn’t inconvenience anyone.

As far as the city is concerned, your life and safety are less important than a parking space. Let alone your comfort and convenience on the road.

Which is the exact opposite of Vision Zero.

And the opposite of what cities like New York, Portland and Vancouver are doing by narrowing roads and removing parking spaces to make room for bike lanes. And resulting in not just better safety, but improved traffic flow, increased livability and better sales figures for businesses along the routes.

We expected better from Mayor Eric Garcetti and LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds. But until they’re willing to make the hard choices and stand up to local opposition and sometimes recalcitrant councilmembers, we’re not going to get it.

So we’ll have to settle for a disconnected non-network of three-block long bike lanes that don’t go anywhere.

Or protect anyone.

………

Former city controller Laura Chick becomes the latest to endorse Joe Bray-Ali, saying “It’s important to have ethical and responsible leadership.”

Meanwhile, Jesse Creed offers lessons learned in his unsuccessful bid to unseat Paul Koretz in CD5.

………

San Diego’s Jennifer Valente won her second world championship as part of the first place US team in the four-member women’s team pursuit.

Britain’s Team Sky is being investigated for violating the “no needles” rule, accused of injecting riders with an amino acid that aids muscle recovery.

A spectator may have deliberately tried to bring down Czech cyclist Zdenek Stybar at last weekend’s Paris-Roubaix.

Here’s your chance to get a spot on a pro cycling team. But only if you can beat another amateur rider in a head-to-head TV show competition.

………

Local

USC removes bike racks and impounds eighty bicycles in preparation for next weekend’s Los Angeles Times Festival of Books; students can get them back at no charge.

Brompton and Just Ride LA will hold a bike scavenger hunt in DTLA on the 30th.

June’s CicLAvia will roll through Glendale and Atwater Village.

CiclaValley says trucks are being banished from parking on Riverside Drive, which should make room for bicycles.

A writer for the Glendale News Press says the bicycle is man’s best inanimate friend. Meanwhile, financial writer Richard Reis calls it the ultimate money-saving device.

There’s an election in Pasadena next Tuesday for the last remaining seat on the city council between incumbent Andy Wilson, who supports the new Union Street cycle track and the coming bikeshare system, and challenger Phil Hosp, who complains about being stuck in traffic caused by the Gold Line.

Megan Lynch tweetstorms the story of nearly getting run over by a cyclist barreling down a South Pasadena sidewalk.

 

State

Cycling Weekly offers six reasons you should go cycling in California. Although the best one is it’s just outside your door.

A Santa Barbara paper looks at the success to Stinner Frameworks, which has grown from a local bikemaker to an internationally recognized brand.

It was a case of instant karma in Santa Rosa, when a driver who circled around to harass a bicyclist lost control of his car and crashed into a parked truck. Although someone should ask the Press Democrat what the hell difference it makes whether the bike rider was a transient.

Sad news from Fresno, where a bike rider was killed when a driver ran down his allegedly lightless bicycle from behind.

Tesla is paying employees to bike to work to deal with chronic parking overcrowding at their Palo Alto headquarters.

 

National

More Americans now work from home than bike and walk to work combined. Which is good for removing cars from the road, not so good for public health.

Ten things to do if you’re injured in a bike crash.

A new solar powered bike lock offers a double locking mechanism making it twice as hard to pick, and will notify you by Bluetooth if someone tries to break it.

A Montana paper says a state senator’s anti-bike campaign isn’t funny, and has already done damage to the state’s reputation.

Arkansas is the latest state to pass ebike legislation based on the California model.

Life is cheap in Michigan, where killing a member of the Triathlon Hall of Fame as she was riding her bike is only worth a lousy $3,000 fine.

A New York bike rider is asking a judge for a default judgment against the city’s former mayor after 89-year old David Dinkins refuses to sit for a deposition in the hit-and-run case.

A DC man has been charged with disobeying a traffic signal for killing a Kiplinger’s editor as she was crossing the street when he crashed his bike into her. He’ll be lucky if he avoids more serious, and possibly deserved, charges in the case.

New Orleans thinks twice after starting to remove a guerilla ghost bike sculpture installed on a median.

The last of Miami’s cocaine cowboys is one of us, too; Gustavo Falcon was busted while riding with his wife near Disney World after 26 years on the run.

 

International

Costa Rica’s state-owned bank is encouraging employees to bike to work, offering a bike parking area, lockers, and dressing rooms with showers.

A British man gets death threats after posting video of kids popping wheelies and riding with no hands, but at least one finger.

A new online tool shows how various factors can be changed to increase bicycling rates throughout the UK.

The UK’s Cyclist Magazine talks with London’s former cycling commissioner, who says the vast majority of road space is given to the least efficient users of it.

A new Singapore bikeshare company is offering a system that will award or deduct points based on rider behavior, which will determine how much they pay for their next ride.

 

Finally…

Actually, most elephants do look good in Lycra. It will be Lady Pippa next time she Races Across America.

And no, a mall is not a BMX track.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: