Archive for Streets and Infrastructure

Morning Links: Businesses benefit by trading parking for bike lanes, and new upscale spinning studio in DTLA

A new study from UC San Diego shows what we already knew.

The seemingly endless and nearly universal argument over parking versus bike lanes is no more valid than the mythical war on cars.

According to San Diego’s KPBS, after looking at cities all over the globe, researchers concluded that designing cities for active transportation — in other words, bicycling and walking — resulted in increased retail activity.

Or to put it another way, greater sales. And presumably, profits.

In fact, one study found that people who bike or walk to shop spend up to $200 a month more in a given store than people who drive. And there’s no research that shows removing street parking negatively impacts business, despite the fears of nearly every business owner, everywhere.

Someone should tell that to Gil Cedillo and Paul Koretz.

And the benefits go beyond just retail sales. As the article says,

The report says there is increased business revenue and economic development in cities designed for physical activity. The researchers said prioritizing the needs of bike riders and walkers over drivers can have broad reaching and positive impact on communities, including healthier citizens and a cleaner environment.

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I’m a firm believer in doing all my cycling outside.

However, for those who prefer to ride indoors, for whatever reason, the new BESPOKE Cycling Studio is now open at FIGat7th in DTLA.

As they describe it,

BESPOKE Cycling Studio offers clients the new carbon blue technology bikes for better performance and for an authentic outdoor ride feel and virtually zero maintenance.  This coupled with lightweight performance handlebars with ErgoLoop, aero bars, and 12 degree incline enable multiple user positions and increased comfort levels.

In addition to offering a unique fitness experience for spinning enthusiasts guests at BESPOKE also have access to complimentary shoe rentals, L¹Occitane natural beauty shower amenities, an alkaline water station, and conveniences such as digital lockers, towels, and fresh fruit. Clients can also opt-in to their tailored fit services including preset cycling shoes, weights and bikes that help them sculpt and tone all in an uplifting fast-paced class.

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Local

KTLA-5 is giving away two American Flyer Wave bicycle-shaped objects bikes every day this week.

 

State

The Race Across America (RAAM) kicks off with solo riders departing from Oceanside today, followed by teams on Saturday.

Google wants to turn Silicon Valley into the American Copenhagen with a low-stress cycling network, although plans for Mountain View may be in jeopardy after the city rejected a proposal to expand its office space.

 

National

The Wall Street Journal profiles a tandem riding Colorado couple, and offers advice on how to get one of your very own. A tandem, that is, not a couple from Colorado.

The Missoula MT marathon is accused of discriminating against disabled athletes who wanted to compete using handcycles.

Hays KS police explain what bike lanes mean, and say cyclists must wear proper attire. I assume that means coat and tie for the men?

Grand Rapids MI is the latest city to get bike share before LA; even tiny ski resort Jackson Hole WY is trying it out before we do.

The World (not really) Naked Bike Ride makes its way to Gotham.

New York plans a bike safety blitz because a pedestrian stepped in front of a bicyclist riding in a bike lane, who didn’t stop after hitting her. After all, it would just be silly to conduct a pedestrian safety blitz.

Just weeks after Secretary of State John Kerry broke his leg riding in France, the US Secretary of Commerce is out of action after hitting gravel on her bike while training for a triathlon.

North Carolina cyclists are urging the state Senate to oppose a provision that would require the state Board of Transportation to approve any road diets.

Thirty New Orleans police officers receive 16 hours of bike and pedestrian safety training to get a better feel for the obstacles both face on the roads.

Political will is needed to make South Florida cyclists safer. Or anywhere else, for that matter.

 

International

Toronto riders call for a citywide grid of protected bike lanes following three cycling deaths in the last two weeks.

West London sees a more than 10% increase in bicycling injuries in the last four years — and a nearly 20% increase in injuries to middle-aged men. However, that could be a result of increased ridership. Or out-of-shape blokes thinking they’re better riders than they really are.

A British Parliament member slams government plans to cut funding for bicycling.

This is why throwing tacks on the road isn’t just a prank. A rider in a Welsh Velothon suffers a nasty gash requiring surgery after suffering a blowout.

Keep your credit card handy. Irish riders who blow reds will soon face on-the-spot fines of 50 euros, the equivalent of $56.

The first woman to ride across Africa now plans to pedal across Antarctica via the South Pole.

A Canadian cyclist riding in Singapore is fined $2,500 — the equivalent of $1,855 US — for allegedly brake-checking an angry driver, then throwing his bike onto the hood of the car after the driver bumps his wheel.

 

Finally…

In a case of what the hell were they thinking, the organizer of a Belgium women’s pro race apologizes for rewarding the winners with bikini-clad podium girls. Whatever you do, don’t throw your pink Barbie bike at a group of cops five floors below.

And an academic researcher says the key to getting away with doping is don’t get caught. But apologize if you do.

 

Morning Links: LA City Council does the wrong thing, Metro picks a bike share vendor, and Sir Bradley didn’t cheat

As expected, the LA City Council voted unanimously to do the wrong thing.

The council voted on Tuesday to approve a deadly one-sidewalk design for the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge, which is scheduled to be remade in a seismic upgrade.

Needless to say, bike, pedestrian and safety advocates haven’t exactly welcomed the decision.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton asks who we should blame for the next death on the bridge — and proceeds to name names — while CiclaValley looks at Tuesday’s wrong-headed decision to throw children crossing the bridge under the bus.

Perhaps literally.

Richard Risemberg calls the council the city’s own death panel for acting to preserve deadly streets and our auto-centric past. The LACBC says the city failed to live up to its ideals of a safe and sustainable future with the council’s unanimous vote.

Then again, after councilmembers quashed bikeways on Westwood Blvd, North Figueroa, Lankershim and 6th and 4th Streets, just to name a few, what else is new?

And MyNewsLA says bike activists booed the decision. Because no one would ever advocate for walking, right?

My take is that the city council has knowingly voted in a dangerous, and possibly illegal, design that will needlessly put Angelenos at risk for decades to come.

Illegal because it may violate the Americans With Disabilities Act by preventing people with handicaps from being able to cross the bridge without using the bike lanes. And because the unanimous vote — after the Public Works Committee sent the design to the full council without a recommendation — suggests that the decision was made in a backroom deal before the public session, in violation of state law.

The vote was rushed through, largely on false pretenses, before outgoing Councilmember Tom LaBonge leaves the council at the end of the month. And before David Ryu, who publicly supported sidewalks on both sides of the bridge, could come in.

It’s a shameful decision.

One that will undoubtedly cause future generations to curse those who left them with a dangerous design they may not be able to fix. And one that flies in the face of the city’s Vision Zero goals contained in the soon-to-be-adopted Mobility Plan.

The question is, where was our supposedly progressive mayor and our new rock star LADOT general manager, who both seemed to vanish just as strong leadership was called for?

Our civic leaders seem to be good at talking when it comes to improving safety and livability.

Just not so good at actually doing it.

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The LACBC’s Central LA Neighborhood Bike Ambassadors are meeting at 6:30 tonight at the Hollywood Branch Library, 1623 N. Ivar Ave.

Among the topics up for discussion,

  • Hollywood Great Streets Challenge Grants– Up to $20,000 Grant to pilot creative projects on Hollywood Blvd between La Brea and Gower
  • Citywide Action Alerts for Mobility Plan 2035 #MobilityMonday – The City’s Mobilty Plan 2035 is going to be on vote at the full Council very soon. LACBC is launching a citywide campaign to support the plan. We need your help to spread the word out! Learn more about the campaign at the meeting and get involved!!

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Looks like there’s white smoke in Metro’s search for a vendor for the planned LA bike share system. And no, it’s no one you’ve ever heard of.

And no, it won’t be compatible with systems being installed in Santa Monica and Long Beach.

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In today’s cheating racing news, charges that Sir Bradley cheated in setting the new hour record last Sunday have been soundly rejected, while Italy’s Southeast cycling team faces a death sentence after a fourth failed doping test linked to the Giro.

Dell says the US Olympic women’s cycling team competes with data, not doping, while an on-bike mid-race shoe change saved the day in the women’s Amgen ToC.

Lance questions critics who question his welcome as he returns to France next month to raise funds to fight leukemia; he risks financial ruin when Floyd Landis’ whistleblower case goes to trial.

And sadly, a Kansas racer was killed in a collision while warming up for the state time trial championships; she was a bronze age group winner in the national cyclocross championships.

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Local

The Boulevard Sentinel’s bike lane hating Tom Topping just can’t resist. After listing all the improvements that have made Eagle Rock more livable, he blames bike lanes on Colorado Boulevard for creating largely imaginary traffic snarls, even though the road diet that created those bike lanes is one of the primary reasons behind that better livability.

Santa Monica Forward says our streets are for everyone. I wish they’d tell that to the LA City Council.

Hats off to Pasadena for the city’s first green bike lane across an intersection, one of the first in the LA area. Meanwhile, Pasadena-based bike lawyer Thomas Forsyth has a spiffy new website.

The new Redondo Beach bikeways on Harbor and Herondo will have their official grand opening on Saturday, although not everyone is happy that bikes are still allowed on the street next to them. Thanks to Margaret for the heads-up.

 

State

BikeSD says human lives should not be the cost of doing business.

Carlsbad police post a trove of recovered bikes online. With a little luck, yours might be one of them.

A 72-year old La Jolla resident is riding in the Race Across America, more commonly known as RAAM, as part of a four-rider relay team.

This is what happens when city officials actually give a damn. San Francisco will limit turns onto busy Market Street to protect cyclists and pedestrians, as well as those in motor vehicles.

Folsom residents call for improvements in a dangerous intersection, too late for an 11-year old boy who was killed trying to cross it on his bike. Why does someone usually have to die before anything gets done?

 

National

The Bike League announces their latest list of Bike Friendly Communities; Rancho Cordova is the only California city added to the list.

Bike Magazine says designer Roxy Lo changed the mountain bike industry. For the better.

In another study from the University of Duh, it turns out lighted streets help reduce severe bike vs car collisions. Who knew being more visible could make a difference?

Good idea. The Spinlister bike rental service allows bike riders to try out bikes on an extended basis before making a buying decision.

The sons of a Las Vegas man killed in a hit-and-run by a suspected drunk driver talk about their loss; it was just the second of the 22-year old driver’s three hit-and-run wrecks that night.

Evidently, Leonardo DiCaprio is one of us; a celeb website recounts his love of blondes and bikes, including New York’s Citi Bikes.

It looks like bike lanes are disappearing in bike friendly NYC.

Caught on video: A Delaware trooper just a tad out of his jurisdiction threatens a bike rider with his badge and gun when the governor’s car blocks a DC bike lane.

Twenty-three firefighters and police officers are riding 650 miles through Florida to honor first-responders who have fallen in the line of duty.

Seriously, slowing traffic in Cape Canaveral isn’t rocket science.

 

International

Toronto also waited until it was too late for a bike riding architect. Meanwhile, the city’s airport says a $2,500 cargo bike should never have been tossed in the trash. Seriously, would they have thrown away a car, even if they thought might have been abandoned?

A woman is offering a reward for the hit-and-run bike rider who knocked her down on a London sidewalk.

Eco-friendly cargo bike delivery firms are popping up all over Great Britain.

Dublin suggests a “most radical” plan to evict cars from the city center, while the mayor of Paris ups the ante by proposing a car-free city center and 100-million Euros for new bike lanes.

Hit-and-run is a worldwide plague, as a cowardly SUV driver sped away after killing a 15-year old Mumbai bike rider.

Afghanistan is experiencing a gender revolution, two wheels at a time.

 

Finally…

A writer says only minivan-driving moms should decide whether bike lanes get built, evidently because families would never, ever ride bikes. Somehow, Bellingham police decided one naked bike rider was apparently more naked than the other 279 naked bike riders.

And if your dog trips up a bike rider in New York, it’s not your fault. But if you’re the bike rider, you’re screwed.

 

Morning Links: Completing deadly Rosemead Blvd; Times seeks video of police shooting in Gardena bike theft

Two hit-and-run drivers killed Heriberto Ruiz last weekend.

But maybe a dangerous roadway should share the blame.

According to BikeSGV, Rosemead Blvd in the Wittier Narrows area where Ruiz was killed is dangerous by design, with speeds often exceeding the posted 50 mph limit. Never mind cars zooming off the Highway 60 offramp, which he was trying to cross when he lost his life.

A bill before the state legislature would turn control of a 2.6 mile segment of the boulevard over to the county, the first step in a possible badly needed Complete Street makeover.

Let’s hope this tragedy is enough to get much needed changes made.

Now.

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Good for them.

The LA Times has filed suit to get the dashboard video showing Gardena Police repeatedly shooting unarmed Ricardo Diaz Zeferino — the brother of the bike theft victim they had been called to help, not kill.

Zeferino was simply trying to tell the officers they had detained the wrong men when they opened fire after he dropped his baseball cap, allegedly because they thought he was trying to remove something from his waistband.

Yet somehow, the DA’s office ruled the shooting was justified. I guess “unarmed” just doesn’t mean what it used to.

Maybe this will let us all find out what really happened. And explain why an innocent man was shot to death by the people sent to help him — literally at the drop of a hat.

And why the DA doesn’t seem to care.

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Calbike says good things are happening for bike riders in the state legislature, including bills that would increase funding for active transportation, and allow riders to attend bike traffic schools to reduce traffic tickets.

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That didn’t take long.

Just hours after Bradley Wiggins set a new hour record, he’s accused of cheating by using a non-regulation bike and getting outside assistance from British Cycling. Evidently to confirm the public’s opinion that all cyclists cheat, all the time.

Wiggins will reportedly shift his focus to track events in the 2016 Olympics. Then again, even dogs can ride a tactical race.

But did anyone check their bikes for signs of mechanical doping?

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Local

Streetsblog looks at South LA community organizer and bike advocate Tafari Bayne.

The average LA driver spends over $3,600 to get to work and back; 59% of Angelenos would use bike share if it was available in their neighborhood. That’s about $3,600 more than the average bike commuter spends.

KPCC reports on the problem of possibly incompatible bike share systems in the LA area.

Joel Epstein says bike lane opponents are still peddling in the last century. Although what they’re trying to sell, I have no idea.

CiclaValley explores the Compton Creek bike path, which seems virtually devoid of human life.

Whittier police recover a therapy tricycle stolen from an autistic 11-year old girl over the weekend.

 

State

OC Parks plans to pave a pathway in Peters Canyon to complete a continuous bikeway from Irvine Park to Upper Newport Bay.

San Diego’s plans for a $200 million bicycle network are over before they even start, according to the San Diego Free Press, which accuses the county association of governments of doubling down on the failed transportation policies of the last 50 years.

NorCal’s Tour de Manure returns for the seventh time. Insert crappy bike pun here.

 

National

Just days after we mentioned a transgender triathlete competing as a woman for the first time, a male transgender triathlete wins a spot on Team USA.

A road raging driver intentionally sideswiped a Colorado Springs cyclist, knocking him out of his first pro triathlon. Note to the Gazette: The race is still on, he just won’t be competing in it. Big difference.

My hometown sets its sights on Diamond Bike Friendly Community status. But even diamonds are rarely flawless. And hello to Andrew Reker, a fellow member of the Fort Collins diaspora. 

Bike friendly Boulder CO considers right sizing certain streets by removing a traffic lane to create spacious seven foot wide bike lanes.

Chicago’s 400-pound Puppet Bike has been entertaining people for 11 years; the bike is so heavy, two additional cyclists have to help tow it for distances more than a few blocks.

A New Jersey cop notices a kid riding his bike with a loose brake, and gets out of his car to fix it himself.

Only bike riders run red lights, right? Wrong. A new study shows one in ten New York drivers run reds.

Baton Rouge LA has a dysfunctional bikeway network; less than half of the city’s bike paths connect to another. Sort of like another LA I could name.

The Palm Beach Post asks, but doesn’t answer, whether the rewards of bike riding over age 70 outweighs the risk. Seriously?

 

International

As Ontario cyclists get the equivalent of a three-foot law, Alberta tells bicyclists don’t hold your breath.

Vancouver’s Chris Bruntlett writes about the pain of bike theft. And how the fear of theft influences where and how we ride. I often choose to walk instead of ride for trips under two miles, because it’s not worth the hassle of carrying a heavy U-lock and field stripping my bike.

A Montreal letter writer bemoans the behavior of her fellow bike riders, saying they don’t behave as well as riders in Copenhagen. On the other hand, Copenhagen has streets and laws designed around bikes; Montreal doesn’t. Or LA, for that matter.

Caught on video: A Brit bike rider is terrorized by the driver of a massive truck dangerously crowding his wheel.

Someone sabotaged the driveway of a popular Brit helmet cam safety campaigner with drawing pins.

A UK personal trainer plans to ride the entire Tour de France route on a chopper bike. Note to CTV News: There’s a bike difference between riding the Tour de France route and actually competing in it.

The Cardiff UK edition of the World Naked Bike Ride stripped down last Sunday; the LA edition rolls out on the 27th. Just promise you won’t get too excited.

The Times offers a nice profile of a woman cyclist in Afghanistan, a country generally unaccommodating to both.

An Israeli city bans e-bikes in some areas, while the country’s police want to require permits for their riders.

A former Manchester United goalie gets off with 12 months probation for deliberately turning his car into a bicyclist during a Sidney, Australia road rage dispute. Would the courts have been as lenient if he’d used a gun instead of a car? Either way, it’s still assault with a deadly weapon. Thanks to Simon for the heads-up.

 

Finally…

With the right skills, you can do anything on a bike, or to it, as the eighth annual Bike Smut exhibition of two-wheeled erotica makes painfully clear. A Cleveland man gets released from jail once he sobered up after being busted for being drunk and sans pants in public — and promptly steals a kid’s bike on his way out.

And an Arizona teenager is busted at the border with $1,600 worth of dope in his bike tires.

But seriously, how was the ride?

 

Morning Links: Hollywood bike parking becomes a homeless site; a blogger argues bike lane air is bad for LA kids

Blocked bike lanes are bad enough.

Now BAC Vice Chair Glenn Bailey sends a photo showing that even if you manage to get where you’re going, there may be nowhere to park your bike once you get there.

Even if there are bike racks in front.

Hollywood Library Bicycle Racks

Yes, everyone has to be somewhere. And I have genuine sympathy for anyone forced to live on the streets, for whatever reason.

But city officials wouldn’t permit anyone to pile up their belongings in the street if it meant no one could park there. And they shouldn’t tolerate anyone blocking all the bike parking, either.

Maybe we need a new law to prohibit anyone from blocking bike racks in such a way that bicycles can’t use them.

But then we’d have to find someone willing to enforce it.

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A blogger concludes that protected bike lanes don’t belong on major LA streets because it’s unsafe for children to breath the air there.

Never mind that the overwhelming majority of riders using major arteries will be adult bike commuters, or that children aren’t likely to be on them long enough to have any significant impact on their health.

The beauty of the 2010 LA bike plan, which has been subsumed into the Mobility Plan currently nearing adoption by the city, is that it was designed with bike-friendly streets on quiet neighborhood byways ideal for children and families, as well as bike lanes on major streets for bike commuters and shoppers.

Yes, all our bikeways should be safe for anyone of any age.

But arguing against bike lanes on major arteries because breathing the air is unsafe for kids is just a straw man for someone who doesn’t want bike lanes taking up space his car could be using.

And never mind that the air inside their parents’ car could be worse than the air outside it.

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Bradley Wiggins did it, smashing the hour record on Sunday. He beat the existing record, set just last month, by six laps, or just under a mile. And after setting the record, he still had enough strength left to lift his bike over his head in celebration.

Although I wonder if anyone inspected his bike to make sure he didn’t have a hidden motor on it.

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Local

Mind your Ps and Qs in SaMo this week, as the SMPD conducts another Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation today, as well as on Wednesday and Friday.

A bike rider was injured in an apparent collision on PCH in Malibu Saturday afternoon. Thanks to Jeffrey for the heads-up.

Long Beach successfully celebrates its first ciclovía. Although Metro, which sponsored the event, somehow decided that was the perfect day to do maintenance work on the Blue Line leading to it.

The man who supervised the design of Long Beach’s beachfront bike path has passed away at 86.

 

State

San Diego’s Hillcrest neighborhood is getting protected bike lanes over the objections of some local business owners. Except where they’re needed most, of course.

A Bay Area driver drips with sarcasm after observing a bike rider stop at a stop sign. Anyone who says they’ve never seen a cyclist stop at a stop sign isn’t paying attention.

A 23-year old San Francisco cyclist was killed in a collision with a police car; he was on his way home from a bike polo match.

Napa officials are wisely following the route bike riders and pedestrians already take, and building a pathway there under a major highway.

Firefighters rescue a bike rider after she apparently rode off a trail into a Modesto canal; she’s in critical condition after being unresponsive for 40 minutes.

Sacramento residents raise nearly $11,000 for a popular chef who was left for dead by a hit-and-run driver while riding home from his restaurant. And they’re not done.

 

National

A bike rider in my hometown is dead after a driver apparently fell asleep behind the wheel, then woke up to see a truck pulling a boat in front of him. So naturally, he swerved into the bike lane and hit the cyclist, instead.

A Wisconsin driver faces a negligent homicide charge for somehow killing two cyclists, even though they were riding on the shoulder of the roadway separated by rumble strips.

Chicago has opened an elevated rail-to-trail bike and pedestrian parkway similar to New York’s popular High Line park.

A former men’s Iron Man champ returns to competition in Missouri. But this time as a woman, two years after her sex reassignment surgery.

Due to a quirk in the law, a Kentucky driver was allowed behind the wheel despite nine — yes, nine — previous DUIs; he now faces a murder charge for killing a cyclist while allegedly driving drunk yet again. Drunk driving should have a lifetime limit of two strikes and you’re out; a third offense should land the driver behind bars. Period.

It turns out that three-foot passing laws aren’t unenforceable after all, as Chattanooga police develop an ultrasound device that measures exactly how close a car comes to a bike.

In what may be the smartest cross-country tour yet, a group of Harvard and MIT students are riding across the US to get kids interested in science.

New York’s Citi Bikes are getting a makeover, courtesy of famed bike maker Ben Serotta.

Homes near Atlanta bikeways are becoming prime real estate.

A professor at Louisiana State University was killed as she walked her bike after it broke down.

 

International

Good news for Wolfpack Hustle, as bike racing’s governing body stops punishing pro racers who participate in unsanctioned events.

A Vancouver cyclist is looking for the Good Samaritan driver who pulled her out of traffic after a solo fall knocked her out.

Turns out that London’s bicycle superhighways almost didn’t happen. So maybe there’s hope for us yet.

A Brit non-profit is getting people on bikes by selling recycled bicycles.

Bicycling is under attack Down Under, as an anti-bike government minister forces the removal of a busy protected bike lane in Sydney, apparently because it replaced on-street parking five years before.

A Kiwi cyclist survives being dragged over 60 feet and trapped under an SUV.

 

Finally…

A Brit Bedlington Terrier rides a tricycle, even if he can’t pedal. Don’t buy your next bike, just print it. And a forlorn Irish rider writes a love letter to his stolen bike.

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Weekend Links: Koretz keeps fighting Westwood bike lanes, while Ryu fights for Glendale-Hyperion sidewalks

At least Daily Bruin is on the story.

While the rest of the media ignores the city’s Mobility Plan — let alone Councilmember Paul Koretz’ attempt to wrest Westwood Blvd from it — UCLA’s student newspaper reports on Koretz’ unceasing efforts to remove bike lanes, if not bikes, from the boulevard.

After singlehandedly killing planned bike lanes on Santa Monica Blvd — along with the study that insiders say would have shown no additional risk or traffic delays — Koretz has now confirmed to the Daily Bruin that he wants to remove plans for a protected bike lane between the UCLA campus and Wellworth Ave, one block below Wilshire.

To justify his efforts, he sites fears that bike lanes in this area would remove parking spaces and turn lanes. Even though current plans don’t call for removing a single lane or traffic spot.

Is that smoke rising from his Dockers?

He also expresses fear that emergency response times could be delayed by the imaginary removal of those parking spots and turn lanes. But without a single traffic study or input from the fire or police departments to support it.

Or anyone else other than the wealthy Westwood homeowners and struggling business owners who seem determined to keep bikes from besmirching the city-owned street they seem to claim ownership to.

Never mind that people on bikes will continue to ride the boulevard in ever increasing numbers as long as it remains the only direct route between the Westwood offices, the UCLA campus and the coming Westwood Expo Line State.

“For the sake of the quality of life of that part of Westwood Village, and the safety of those who travel to and through it, that section should be removed from the plan,” Koretz said in the statement.

This despite numerous studies showing that protected bike lanes improve the quality of life, are good for business, result in higher property values and increase safety for everyone on the roadway as much as 58% — or up to 90% for riders on the type of lanes he’s trying to squash.

Koretz concludes that he continues to work for “safer and less disruptive” routes for the over 3,000 people who bike to campus everyday.

Just like OJ continues to search for the real killer.

And with the same results.

……..

Newly elected City Councilmember David Ryu comes out strongly in favor of a walkable and bikeable Glendale-Hyperion Bridge in a letter to the Public Works Committee.

Of course, the question is whether his opinion will matter in the apparent effort to rush a flawed designed through the council before he can take office.

The matter is scheduled to go before the full council at 10 am Tuesday, before Ryu takes office at the end of the month.

Meanwhile, KPCC picks up the story.

They caused a brief Twitter flap by reporting LADOT Executive Officer Bruce Gillman’s comment that Vision Zero is “not a citywide initiative.” Which left many to wonder, myself included, just what level of death was acceptable in which neighborhoods.

The @LADOTofficial Twitter account later explained that what Gilman meant was that the Strategic Plan’s Vision Zero policy did in fact cover all of Los Angeles, but has not been formally adopted yet.

Well okay, then.

……..

At least one LA visionary isn’t very visionary when it comes to bike lanes.

The founder of Zócalo Public Square says building a bike lane to the farmers’ market won’t build a great city, preferring a focus on ports and jobs. Never mind that many low-income workers rely on bikes to get to those jobs.

And evidently, the mayor’s Great Streets program is a secret plot to forever ruin the City of Angels by installing bike lanes.

……..

Maybe John Kerry’s bike riding skills have been unfairly maligned. Iranian news outlets claim that instead of clipping a curb while riding his bike, Kerry was actually injured in an assassination attempt during a secret meeting with ISIS.

……..

Britain’s Bradley Wiggins takes on the hour record on Sunday.

Business Insider takes a look at the bike he’ll use, while a brief video from the Guardian looks back at the history of the hour record.

Wiggo’s effort is scheduled to be carried live on YouTube — though perhaps available in the UK only — while the Cycling Fan website promises to stream it online.

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2015-COLT-Flyer-smallThere’s a lot going on this weekend in our local bike world.

Long Beach host’s it’s first ciclovía on Saturday, including free shuttle buses; Streetsblog’s Damien Newton offers advice for first timers, while the Militant Angeleno reprises his guide to the city.

Glendale’s Jewel City Ride rolls this Sunday.

The LACBC’s monthly Sunday Funday ride visits Carson on the 7th.

And Sunday marks the return of Ride the Colt, the Chatsworth Orange Line Tour offering family friendly walks and rides up to 19 miles.

……..

Local

LA Street Services tests out a mini-street sweeper to clean the new protected bike lane on Reseda Blvd.

Joel Epstein looks at how and why CicLAvia works.

Amazing how the neighborhoods north and west of traditionally bike-unfriendly USC have a 20% bike mode share. Imagine how high that could go around bike-friendly UCLA if a certain councilmember who claims to support bicycling actually did.

Concerns are rising that the bike share program in Santa Monica — and Long Beach — will be incompatible with Metro’s planned program projected to eventually spread countywide. That can has been kicked down the road since discussion of the SaMo and Long Beach plans first began.

Santa Monica’s Cynergy Cycles is hosting a series of bike skills workshops every Thursday and Saturday through August 1st. And they want your feedback on how they can be more involved in the cycling community. Be sure to tell ‘em you found the survey on BikinginLA.

 

State

More on the Ventura County Grand Jury saying more needs to be done to improve bike safety, while pointing the finger at drivers who don’t understand bike laws.

Santa Barbara’s Sonos pays its employees to bike to work; 60 – 80 rides earns a new $600 bike, with $5 a day after that.

A San Francisco cop fights bike theft via Twitter.

Google now has their own bike plan.

 

National

Now you can get a heads-up display on your sunglasses telling you when and how much to eat. Because apparently, we’ve been doing it all wrong for the last 100 or so years.

A writer for Vice offers advice on how to be a cyclist without being a dick. Although it usually seems to take one to write about how to not be one.

The shooting of a popular cyclist near my hometown could be the work of a serial sniper.

A conservative Canadian cyclist says Wisconsin’s governor isn’t waging war on bicyclists, and we should all just ride on the damn sidewalk like he does.

Clean Technica says bike commuting makes you healthy and happy. I’m still waiting on the wealthy and wise part, though.

Life is cheap in Texas, as a teenage driver gets deferred adjudication for killing a cyclist after allegedly blowing through a stop light at twice the speed limit; if he completes probation, he won’t even have a conviction on his record. His victim, on the other hand, will still be dead.

Nice story from Illinois, as a cop raises $1,700 through a crowdfunding site to buy a cyclist a new bike after his was destroyed in the collision that nearly took the rider’s life. Meanwhile, a New York rider gets a used bike from a Daily News reader after hers was stolen.

A Michigan judge makes the punishment fit the crime, banning a woman from owning or using a cell phone for two years for killing a bike-riding mother of two while driving distracted; however, she only gets 90 days in jail. Something tells me the cell phone ban will be the tougher punishment.

New protected bike lanes in Pittsburgh recorded over 24,000 trips in May. Just imagine how many trips a safe route through Westwood could record.

A suspected Philadelphia-area robber was killed when he fell off his getaway bicycle and was hit by a pursuing police car.

A bike-riding Miami boy was collateral damage when three gunmen fired on a crowded basket ball court. The 10-year old victim was shot in the leg; fortunately, no one else was hurt.

 

International

Before you dress for your next spandex-clad ride, considers these eight bike kit fashion faux pas.

In a story that is equal parts heartbreaking and inspiring, an 80-year old Montreal man will ride the same route he walked as a child looking for his parents after surviving Auschwitz.

The safety in numbers effect seems to be working in London as injuries fall while ridership climbs; the city tests smart bike lanes to help protect riders from dumb drivers.

The founder of a London start-up explains why she made a laserlight projection to make bikes more visible, while a candidate for London mayor says he doesn’t feel safe riding through the city at rush hour.

This is why more women don’t ride. When a Brit TV host promotes women’s bicycling, a London paper focuses on her ass. Literally.

A new UK study from the University of Duh shows skipping breakfast can affect your athletic performance later in the day.

A cyclist rides a 1910 Tour de France route through five Pyrenees passes, fixed and brakeless.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Michael Bay are teaming up to make a movie about the Rwandan national bike team founded by Jock Boyer, the first American to ride in the Tour de France.

 

Finally…

Wait, you mean bike riders aren’t the only ones who blow through red lights? Now cars aren’t the only ones with air bags. It can only be a matter of time before newspapers report on bike riders who failed to don an inflatable vest.

And an Olympic track cyclist manages to make toast with just the power of his legs. If he can make bacon and coffee to go with it, we’ll be on to something.

 

 

Morning Links: Public Works says don’t ask us on Glendale-Hyperion; Ventura Grand Jury says cars are dangerous

Chances are, the fix is in.

The city council Public Work’s committee votes to send the one-sided sidewalk plan for the Glendale-Hyperion bridge to the full city council without a recommendation, as committee members complain about the rush to approve the plan before outgoing councilmember Tom LaBonge leaves office at the end of the month.

As Streetsblog’s Joe Linton notes in the article above, the council’s history of deferring to councilmembers’ whims preferences for items in their district means we’ll probably see yet another unanimous vote of the council in favor of the auto-centric design, while members pay lip service to the need to protect and serve the non-driving public.

If the council leadership has any real integrity, it will move to delay a vote until David Ryu, the new 4th District representative, takes office.

Ryu is on record as preferring a road diet on the bridge, with bike lanes and sidewalks on both sides, rather then the unsafe design currently being rushed through.

………

The Ventura County Grand Jury looked into bike safety, and concluded what we already know — most bike fatalities are the result of driver errors, and that the public needs to be educated on bike law.

Oh, and helmets.

Speaking of which, Bell has introduced the first sub-$100 helmet designed to protect against rotational injuries.

………

Contador says accusations that he used a hidden motor in his wheel to win the Giro are ridiculous. ‘Cause he’d never cheat or anything, right?

Pro cyclist Roman Kreuziger denies the doping charges that could lead to a four year ban if he loses his appeal. And Brit cycling champ Nicole Cooke says there’s a moral vacuum in sports administration, as Lance and the current FIFA scandal shows, but women’s bike racing doesn’t have to follow suit.

On the other hand, Eater says coffee is cycling’s new performance-enhancing drug.

Wait, new? Seriously?

………

Local

The LA Mobility Plan moves on to city council committee hearings this month, after surviving attempts to have the Westwood bike lanes removed at the Planning Commission.

The LA River bike path continues to grow in the San Fernando Valley, piece by short piece.

The new semi-green bike lanes on Westwood Blvd on the UCLA campus have plenty of markings, but don’t go very far. Councilmember Paul Koretz is bravely leading the fight to keep those bike lanes from besmirching any pavement off campus.

The 57-year old grandfather riding cross-country to honor his wife, who suffers from pancreatic cancer, and raise funds for cancer research rolls into Santa Monica.

A letter to the SGV Tribune shows there’s always some indignorant grouch who just doesn’t get CicLAvia, no matter how popular it is with the people who actually get off their ass and go.

Rick Risemberg says taking the train from CicLAvia on Sunday shows how easily bikes can solve the first mile/last mile problem.

Long Beach approves $2 million to buy bikes for the city’s upcoming bike share program.

The Daily News reviews the bicycle-themed Pedalers Fork in Calabasas.

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition’s Tamika Butler writes about the 545-mile journey that lead her to become the Executive Director of SoCal’s leading bike advocacy group. Meanwhile, the LACBC offers more information on those free bike safety classes being offered around the county this summer. Did I mention the classes are free?

 

State

Calbike offers their monthly update on the state of bike advocacy in California.

Just Another Cyclist reviews Neil Hanson’s Pilgrim Wheels, subject of our recent Bike Week giveaway.

A Santa Ana city councilperson helps lead the push for active transportation improvements in Orange County; she says she won’t ride on the streets after being hit by cars twice.

San Diego cyclists are urged to speak up on Friday to preserve plans for protected bike lanes on the city’s most dangerous corridor.

Ralph Durham forwards word that Sunnyvale has released a draft feasibility study for the proposed Four City Steven’s Creek Trail; comments are due by the 10th. And let’s all wish Ralph auf wiedersehen for his move to Munich next month.

A Bay Area lawyer says bike riders who hit pedestrians could be covered for liability by their homeowners (or renters) insurance.

A Truckee driver was cited for injuring a bike rider in a left cross. As he should be, for a change.

 

National

A website lists seven high-tech inventions for modern cyclists. Including the Camelback Podium Ice water bottle, which I can personally vouch for; just add a little ice and it keeps water cold for hours on hot summer day.

An Oregon cop responding to an emergency call hit a bike rider, who was not seriously injured; the officer admitted going through a red light, but somehow couldn’t avoid hitting a cyclist despite going just five mph. Really?

Turns out Alaskans don’t need an expensive new bike to compete in a triathlon. Or anyone else, for that matter.

A salmon cyclist gets the death penalty in Phoenix, as the arrest of a wrong way bike rider on outstanding warrants starts a chain of events that leads to his death behind bars.

Cleveland gets a library book bike of its own this summer.

Life is cheap in Michigan, as a 23-year old driver plead no contest to a misdemeanor charge for killing a cyclist while driving distracted. So what the hell does it take to make it a felony?

The New Orleans edition of the World Naked Bike Ride rolls through Bourbon Street next weekend. The only place where a line of naked bike riders isn’t likely to seem odd.

A Louisiana man is in critical condition after falling off his bike while riding next to train tracks; he was unable to completely roll off the tracks before a train came.

 

International

A UK town builds a new cycle path to improve safety; a local official riding it immediately falls into a ditch.

A Scottish woman is convicted of killing an experienced cyclist while driving distracted; she deleted the record of her cell phone call in an attempt to hide the evidence. Meanwhile, fellow countrywoman Town Mouse writes about how good it feels to be back on her own bike after a visit to the States.

A drunk father of six is killed when he mistakenly rode his bike onto a busy Irish freeway; a sign warning cyclists not to enter may have been removed for construction work.

A Norwegian study shows e-bikes encourage people to ride more, but cost more than most people are willing to pay.

A writer for the Guardian takes part in a boozy, costumed mountain bike ride through the south of France.

A South African court rules a electric company is liable for the injuries suffered by a cyclist who rode into a low-hanging power line. Warning, the description of his fellow riders trying to save him from electrocution is simply horrifying.

 

Finally…

Apparently, newspapers can drive cars Down Under, but have trouble seeing darkly dressed bike riders. A Czech mountain bike maker says women don’t want to push their limits or feel that adrenalin rush; this is what happens when a company fails to understand their target market.

And evidently, Hillary Clinton is after the bike vote.

 

Weekend Links: 3 years for vehicular assault, LA’s Mobility Plan passes PlanComm, and CicLAvia Pasadena

Three years hardly seems long enough.

But it will have to do.

According to the Daily Breeze, William Thomas Kelly reached a plea deal that will keep him behind bars for the next three years for his drunken road rage rampage through the Palos Verdes area, in which he deliberately used his car to assault a cyclist and smash into parked cars.

Kelly reportedly hit one car, then backed up to hit it again and drove on to sideswipe a parked car. He then hit the pedal of a bicyclist; when the rider yelled at him, he backed up and used his car to knock the rider and his bike into the bushes, then drove back and forth over his bike. He was later found passed out with a BAC of at least 0.11 after crashing into a gated fence.

Hopefully, the plea will include a condition that he never drive again.

……..

The LA Planning Commission voted Wednesday to approve the city’s mobility plan, including a slightly scaled back version of the 2010 bike plan and a commitment to Vision Zero.

Streetsblog reports the planned Westwood Blvd bike lane survived an attack by a representative of Councilmember Paul Koretz, while Commissioner Richard Katz questioned whether bike facilities belong on the street at all.

Katz said he supported expanding the bicycle network, but “we will never be Boulder or Davis.”

Not with thinking like that, anyway.

……..

CicLAvia offers a list of activities along Sunday’s Pasadena route, while KNBC-4, KCET and the Pasadena Star-News looks forward to it. Note to Star-News: Unless the director of Walden School is selling something as he rides to work, the word you want is pedals, not peddles.

Feeder rides — and a walk — are available from throughout the area. The Militant Angeleno provides his must-read guide to the Rose City route; seriously, never go to any CicLAvia without reading the Militant’s detailed and insightful guides first. Time Out gives their thoughts on Sunday’s event, while CiclaValley provides a handful of tips and a handy checklist of everything you need to bring.

And yes, bikes are optional; this should be the most walkable CicLAvia yet.

In honor of CicLAvia, KPCC will broadcast a one-hour show all about bikes at 10 am today and again on Sunday; you can listen live online.

And the San Gabriel Tribune says every weekend should be like CicLAvia in every downtown in the San Gabriel Valley and Whittier areas. Or maybe just everywhere.

I’m not going to be able to make this one, so let us all know how it goes.

……..

I’m hearing nothing but good things about the new green separated bike lanes in Redondo Beach, which includes some of the area’s first bicycle traffic signals.

But the smartest thing they did was put sharrows on the roadway next to it for riders who want to go faster or avoid the bikeway crowds on busy weekends.

Both Ted Faber and Jim Lyle sent photos.

Photo by Ted Faber

Photo by Ted Faber; note the sharrows on the street to the right

Photo by Jim Lyle; note the sharrows on the street to the right

Photo by Jim Lyle

photo by Jim Lyle

photo by Jim Lyle

……..

LGBT site Frontiers Media looks at the bike scene in the City of Angeles, with brief overview of bicycling in the city.

They go on to list five places every LA bike enthusiast should know, along with seven gadgets and gizmos for geared-up Angelenos. Although I wouldn’t call a $3,750 Cervelo a gadget. And I sure as hell wouldn’t call it a mountain bike.

……..

The latest bike racing rumors involve mini-motors in the pro pelaton, as Ryder Hesjedal takes offense at having his bike checked to make sure he’s not motor doping.

Former Giro champ Damiano Cunego is out of this years race with a broken collarbone, while Contador continues to hold the leader’s jersey. And no, he didn’t have a motor in his bike, either, but he did command some respect on Thursday.

Meanwhile, former pro and ’97 TdF winner Jan Ulrich faces up to three years in prison for a DUI collision that injured two people.

Closer to home, next year’s US pro cycling championship will move from Chattanooga to Winston-Salem NC.

……..

New bicycle maker Brilliant will ship you a steel frame bike for $300, as long as you’re willing to assemble it yourself. And don’t expect your LBS to fix it for you if you screw it up.

Then again, it might be easier to just print your next ti bike, or at least the handlebars.

Or maybe you’d prefer a steam powered bike.

……..

Local

Streetsblog gives us part two of their interview with retiring UCLA parking maven Donald Shoup.

The LACBC interviews super bike volunteer Wayne “Ridetime” Howard, while Bicycling profiles Coolass Mike Bowers and his efforts to put 1,000 bikes in the hands of foster kids.

Malibu city council committees approve the 850-page PCH Safety Study, which calls for 130 safety improvements along the dangerous coast highway, including bike lanes where they don’t conflict with street parking. God forbid a parking space should be sacrificed in the name of safety.

The LA Weekly profiles an Oakland-based theater company that’s traveling across the country by bike; they’ll perform at the Santa Monica Pier on the 1st, before moving on the San Diego and eventually making their way to New York.

A new proposal to replace the much-hated plans to complete the 710 Freeway includes light rail and a multi-lane boulevard complete with busways and a separated bike path.

The first phase of Santa Monica’s MANGo neighborhood greenway officially opens today.

Long Beach is officially opening the new pedestrian walkway on the beach today, which promises to improve safety on the beachfront bike path by separating bikes from people on foot. Something Santa Monica desperately needs to do.

Your last chance to weigh in on the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge could come this Wednesday before the Public Works Committee; the full city council often doesn’t allow public comments before taking a vote, especially if someone is likely to disagree with their pre-determined decisions.

 

State

A Tustin man is under arrest for breaking the window of a bike shop and stealing an adult-sized tricycle; he was in the process of stealing another bike a mile away when caught.

San Diego held their rain-delayed Bike to Work Day Friday.

San Diego’s North County is sprouting new sharrows; the story reports that sharrows on the Coast Highway in Solano Beach dropped average speeds by 10 mph without increasing congestion. Nice that they’re using us for rolling speed bumps, though.

A Marine vet who lost his legs in Afghanistan will set off from San Diego Monday for a 65-day ride across the US on a hand-cranked ‘bent.

A legal opinion concludes that the planned 50-mile multi-use path through the Coachella Valley qualifies for tax funds as a roadway because electric golf carts will be allowed to use it.

A gang member is under arrest for stabbing a bike riding Redlands art student in the face.

San Francisco’s bike share system is expanding from 700 to 7,000 bikes throughout the Bay Area.

As if the internet isn’t killing enough of their business, now Bay Area bike messengers are being targeted by bike thieves.

The new Marin bicycling museum opens to the public on Saturday, June 6th, with nearly 200 years of bike history, including the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame; a local group celebrates by calling for a crackdown on Marin off-road riders.

Modesto is working to convert itself to model bike-friendly city for everyone on two wheels.

 

National

A new infographic from People for Bikes shows many of the assumptions about women and bicycling are wrong, while Bicycling suggests 10 ways bike shops can be more welcoming to women. But the biggest barrier to greater diversity on bikes may be access to safer infrastructure.

Four cities are racing to build the first working protected intersection in the US. And no, Los Angeles isn’t one of them.

Portland parents launch a national PAC to force apologists for traffic violence out of office. About damn time.

A local motorcycle club plans to throw volleyballs at speeding Spokane sheriff’s deputies to protest the death of a 15-year old bicycle rider, after investigators conclude their patrol car didn’t hit the teen’s bike. Note to Spokane County Sheriff’s Department: It’s not unusual for bike riders to go over the handlebars in a panic stop without anyone actually hitting them; that doesn’t mean the driver who forced the panic stop isn’t responsible.

Proof bike riders aren’t always the good guys. Colorado state police are looking for a bicyclist who caused a motorcycle rider to wipeout near my hometown; a witness reports the rider veered in front of the motorbike and slowed down, causing the victim to lose control and be thrown from his bike, then just turned around and rode away without stopping to help. Jerk.

To no one’s surprise, the fatal shooting of a Colorado cyclist has officially been linked to the random shooting of a driver on the nearby I-25.

Albuquerque becomes the latest city to get bike share before LA; officials hope the program will help revitalize the downtown area.

A Texas bike rider discovers a casket, presumably with the body still inside, along a bike path after the recent floods.

Michigan traffic engineers take road diet to the extreme, proposing a street with a single lane shared by drivers traveling in both directions, and bike lanes on either side; drivers are supposed to safely merge into the bike lanes when they meet a car coming in the opposite direction. Anyone want to guess how that will work in real life?

Nice story from Ohio, as a 5th Grader saved the rewards he got in school for good behavior to buy his younger brother a bike — even though he didn’t have one himself. When teachers and administrators found out, they took up a collection to buy him one, too.

A Notre Dame dean and physics professor has ridden across the country every summer for the last five years to raise funds for rare disorders.

While the rest of New York’s media was focused on a bike riding neurological researcher killed by a hit-and-run driver who was fleeing the police, the Post saved its front page for a scofflaw cyclist out for a ride with his son.

Virginia’s Bicycle Bandit faces up to 100 years in prison for robbing a series of banks before pedaling — not peddling — to make his getaway.

A Baton Rouge driver turns himself in five days after he fatally stuck a bike rider. Which presumably would have given him plenty of time to sober up.

 

International

Bike Score ranks the least bike friendly cities in Canada.

A new Canadian study show wide traffic lanes make for more dangerous streets.

Five years after Vancouver merchants fought separated bike lanes, they’d now fight if anyone tried to remove them, according to the leader of a local business association.

A cyclist from the UK will attempt to break the seven day record by riding over 1,800 miles in a single week.

Yes, the UK’s new 20 mph speed limits can reduce injury collisions, but only if drivers actually observe them; a study shows the lower limit reduced speeds by just 1 mph in one city.

The acting leader of the British Labour party calls for a ban on large trucks during peak traffic hours to protect bike riders. Meanwhile, rear- and side-facing cameras on those same trucks could save the lives of cyclists and pedestrians, if they’d actually use them.

Somewhere between 50 to 100 bystanders teamed together to lift a double decker bus — yes, a bus — off a critically injured Brit unicycle rider.

Scottish lawyers warn about the danger to cyclists crossing Edinburgh’s tram tracks; one firm alone claims to represent nearly 100 such cases.

An Irish Paralympic cyclist is raising funds for a new leg in hopes of making the podium in Rio next year.

A New Zealand cyclist is attempting to circumnavigate the country in just three months, riding over 6,000 miles to raise funds for an ambulance company.

Sydney, Australia officials go the wrong way, making the city more dangerous for cyclists by reneging on a promise to replace a bike lane scheduled for removal.

A Bangkok bike commuter says he’s tired of weak support for bicycling, as well as suggestions that bike riders belong on an off-road recreational path instead of commuting.

 

Finally…

Actor Matthew Modine got his start with a bike left behind when someone smashed his grownup lemonade stand. The battle between cars and bikes has been going on a long time; the first recorded collision between two vehicles was between a bike and a car back in 1896.

And be sure to look up every now and then when you ride.

……..

One last note.

Recently, I mentioned a moving piece from Zócalo Public Square in which Aurelio Jose Berrera wrote of getting up early a few days a week to ride out in search of homeless people huddled in the doorways and alleys of our city, his bike loaded down with donated food to hand out to those in need.

His story reminded me of a saint whose heart was similarly filled with compassion for a homeless stranger.

So I was surprised to open my laptop the other day, and discover an email from Berrera thanking me. According to his message, what I wrote, along with a handful of other stories about his efforts, helped inspire Petaluma-based Yuba Bicycles to donate a Mundo cargo bike to make his volunteer work a little easier.

According to a Yuba press release he attached, 

“Jose is an honorable, kind and humble man whose generous spirit and desire to help others is an example for all of us,” says Benjamin Sarrazin, founder and owner of Yuba Bicycles. “Yuba is proud to help Jose by providing a cargo bike that will hopefully enable him to more easily carry out his mission. He is truly a hero.”

I couldn’t agree more.

But there’s more than one hero here.

Yuba deserves a round of thanks for caring enough to give a bike to help those so many of us don’t even seem to see. As does everyone who contributes to help Berrera help them.

I’m not sure how big a role I really played in helping him get the new bike.

But his email made my week.

 

Morning Links: Koretz reportedly kills Great Streets bike lanes in Westwood Village; new Redondo bike lanes paved

So much for Great Streets.

According to UCLA’s Daily Bruin, the Westwood Community Council discussed removing bike lanes on Westwood Blvd from the city’s Mobility Plan, despite being unanimously approved by the full city council as part of the 2010 bike plan.

And yes, CD5’s Paul Koretz was one of those councilmembers who voted to adopt the plan.

Yet Koretz has already single-handedly killed bike lanes on Westwood south of Santa Monica Blvd, and now the Daily Bruin reports he’s agreed not to allow the much-needed bike lanes to be painted in Westwood Village, which is scheduled to be part of the Great Streets program.

Even though the plan currently under consideration doesn’t remove a single traffic lane or parking spot from UCLA south to the Expo Line.

Thanks to Koretz, Westwood will continue to fail the thousands of students and faculty who ride to the campus every day, as well as the countless more who will come when the Expo Line opens next year. Not to mention anyone wishing to visit the area’s shops and restaurants by any means other than motor vehicles.

All this from someone who claimed to support implementing the bike plan in his own district. But who has, through his actions, become one of the biggest obstacles to the growth of bicycling and the safety of cyclists on the Westside.

Clearly, the bike plan, which LA bicyclists had to fight for, isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on.

And evidently, neither is a formal approval by the city council.

Maybe what we need is a good lawyer.

……..

VeloNews says pro cycling once again shot itself in the foot by penalizing Richie Porte for accepting a wheel from a member of a competing team when he punctured in the Giro. There’s something wrong when the rules stand in the way of genuine sportsmanship.

Meanwhile, the director of Team Sky wants you to be able to hear radio communications between team directors and riders.

And the Feds say Lance continues to obfuscate, as Olympic champion Nicole Cooke blames the “Cult of Lance Armstrong” for continued doping problems in cycling. Note to Cooke: Pro cyclists doped long before Lance joined the peloton, and many will continue to as long as they think they can get away with it.

……..

Ted Faber reports the new Redondo Beach separated bike lanes have been paved and painted green; at last report was they’re still scheduled to open by Memorial Day.

Redondo Bike Lane

……..

Local

Streetsblog explains what the misguided decision to include just one sidewalk on the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge really means. Hopefully new CD4 Councilmember David Ryu will keep his promise to hold out for bike lanes and sidewalks on both sides.

Santa Monica students take part in the Bike It Walk It program, which is now part of the Safe Routes to Schools Initiative.

The LACBC, CICLE and Metro host the last in their series of family friendly Southeast LA rides this Saturday, with a six-mile route through Bell Gardens.

 

State

The California Bicycle Coalition offers their monthly report, and urges action to increase funding for the state’s Active Transportation Program.

Speaking of Calbike, Damien Newton talks to board member Chris Kidd, who also serves on the boards of Walk/Bike Oakland and Bike East Bay. Chris has come a long way since he founded the LADOT Bike Blog while serving as an intern with the agency.

Thirty-seven Orange County kids got to take home a new bike as part of the national Build-A-Bike program for military families.

Yet another bike rider was shot and killed this week, this time in a Santa Ana drive-by late Tuesday night.

Bike cops return to Costa Mesa for the first time since the 1990s.

A local TV station says a cyclist is in critical condition after colliding with another rider in a Lompoc pro race on Wednesday. However, there doesn’t appear to have been a pro race in the area; maybe it was a group or training ride.

Heartbreaking profile of a San Francisco bike rider who lost his life following an “amazing renaissance” in the last few years. This is the price of our dangerous streets, even though most victims never receive more than a few inches in the local paper. If that.

Eureka decides not to ban bikes from the sidewalk to combat bike-born burglars. Note to Eureka: Not everyone who rides on the sidewalk is a criminal, especially where safe bikeways are lacking.

 

National

Yet another study shows bike riders and pedestrians overpay for their share of the road, while imposing almost no costs for wear and tear.

The Bike League says if bicycling is going to continue to grow, bike shops need to welcome everyone.

Forget just biking to work; the office of the future will allow you to ride up to your desk.

Tucson agrees to pay a bike rider $1.8 million, without admitting guilt in the case, after he was run over by one of the city’s garbage trucks while riding in a bike lane. Although it looks like they’ve admitted responsibility about 1.8 million times.

Investigators are questioning whether the fatal shooting of a Colorado cyclist could be linked to a series of shootings on nearby I-25; a triathlon planned for this weekend has been canceled because of the shooting.

Formerly bike friendly Wisconsin continues its attack on bicycling, proposing a $25 tax on every new bicycle sold; this comes after the governor’s proposal to eliminate the state’s Complete Streets requirement. I don’t have a problem with taxing bike sales as long as 100% of the fund go to pay for bike infrastructure. However, the amount of the tax should be tied to the value of the bike; a $25 tax is more likely to discourage someone from buying a $250 bike than it would a $2,500 one.

Chicago business leaders stand behind efforts to preserve one of the city’s most heavily used protected bikeways during a construction project.

A Nashville bike club gives away 25 bicycles to honor a member who was killed in a robbery Monday night, in an attempt prevent more violence by getting kids on bikes.

Bicycling reports on a Philadelphia company where all 114 employee commute by bike.

The widow of a cyclist sues to force improvements to a Maryland highway where her husband was killed five years earlier.

 

International

A cyclist and a jogger team up to save the life of an Ottawa bike rider after he fell into a canal next to a bike path; he was still clipped into his pedals as he sank into the water.

An anonymous 90-year old Montreal man has given free bikes worth over $600,000 to local kids for the past three decades. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Newfoundland city councilors want to rip out a lightly used bike lane so local residents can park in front of their houses again. Never mind that ridership might increase if they waited until the city’s bike plan was actually completed.

A couple riding across South America with their dog launches a crowd-funding campaign to pay for cataract surgery after the Westie goes blind.

London bike-jackings are on the rise; over 550 people were mugged for their bikes while riding last year.

Scientific American reports on several cities where it’s faster to ride a bike than drive during rush hour. Not surprisingly, that includes LA, where traffic averages 8 mph on one unidentified corridor.

 

Finally…

Yes, a New York man is stealing purses and iPhones, but at least he does it while riding a Citi Bike. A Portland cyclist who helps bike theft victims recover their bikes had his own stolen while he was watching a news report about his efforts.

And if your bike isn’t safe inside a medical marijuana dispensary, where is it?

 

Morning Links: LA’s DPW goes forward to the past, the Bike Week beat goes on, we’re #8, and a pretty bike painting

Just a few of the bike riders who turned out for the Blessing of the Bicycles hosted by Good Samaritan Hospital on Tuesday; photo by Carolin Kewer.

Just a few of the bike riders who turned out for the Blessing of the Bicycles hosted by Good Samaritan Hospital on Tuesday; photo by Carolin Kewer.

……..

LA’s Department of Public Works continues to plan for the city’s auto-centric past.

Evidently thinking the word Public refers only to the motoring public, the department is recommending that the reconstructed Glendale-Hyperion Bridge should have even fewer crosswalks than the current unsafe crossing.

But hey, we will get a new bike/ped bridge over the LA River, using existing structures left over from the old Red Car trains, right?

The City Council’s Public Works Committee will consider the DPW’s recommendation for the much-hated Option 1 for the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge Friday morning. CiclaValley offers a good look at why that’s a bad thing.

The speedy hearing looks like an attempt to rush the plan to approval before the new CD4 representative has a chance to oppose it; both candidates in next week’s election prefer the third option, which would remove a lane to create space for pedestrians and bike riders, resulting in a projected 10 second delay for motorists.

Yes, 10 seconds.

Seriously, how much more harm can Tom LaBonge do before he finally leaves office?

………

Tuesday's non-denominational ceremony including Christian, Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist blessings.

Tuesday’s non-denominational ceremony including Christian, Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist blessings.

More Bike Week news, as Monday’s kickoff press conference makes self-professed cynic Joe Linton smile.

Streetsblog reports on Tuesday’s Blessing of the Bicycles, along with Monday’s panel discussion on the future of bicycling. And a reporter for KABC-7 bikes to work, partly on the LA River bike path.

WeHo will host a pit stop on tomorrow’s Bike to Work Day, while Burbank will have four stops. You can find other pit stops on Metro’s jumbled one-size-fits-all Bike Week map. Is it just me, or is 50-plus pit stops kind of pathetic for a county this size? Seriously, any business that does business with bike riders and doesn’t host a pit stop needs to take Marketing 101 over again.

While you’re at it, bike to the library; the Central Library in DTLA is hosting a free class in bike maintenance Thursday evening.

Bike Snob says the problem with Bike Week is it encourages inexperienced riders to take to their bikes for a few days before they get back in their cars.

On the other hand, people who bike or walk to work are 40% less likely to be tense in the first hour at work.

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Washington leads the list in the Bike League’s latest ranking of bike-friendly states, while ‘Bama checks in dead last; California moves up a notch to number eight.

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Cav makes it two in a row in the Amgen Tour of California, but Latvian rider Toms Skujins takes the leader’s jersey in stage three. And no, I never heard of either of him, either.

The only rider to compete in every Tour of California unfortunately exits his 10th and last one in an ambulance after a crash. The Lodi paper is impressed with how fast pro cycling is.

And you have one more chance to see the world’s top women riders in action at Friday’s Big Bear time trial. You’ll have to be there in person, though, since women’s racing isn’t deemed worthy of TV coverage.

Meanwhile, Australia’s Simon Clarke takes the pink jersey after a “tempestuous” stage in the Giro. That massive crash caused by a fixie-riding fan in stage two is caught on video, as is a vicious face plant during a descent by Italian rider Domenico Pozzovivo.

And Giro officials are on the lookout for bike doping, inspecting pro riders bikes for hidden motors.

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Local

Bike theft continues to soar in Los Angeles, up nearly 60% in DTLA; a police spokesperson says there’s no real consequences for property crimes since the passage of Prop 47, which reclassified some crimes as misdemeanors to reduce jail overcrowding. As my friend Eric W. pointed out, rising rates of bike theft could also be a result of rising riding rates; more bikes on the road means more poorly protected bikes and more bikes to steal.

The first Finish the Ride hit-and-run billboard goes up in Pasadena. Let’s hope we soon see these everywhere.

UCLA will paint new bike lanes in Westwood Plaza in less than two weeks.

The Malibu Surfside News reports on Friday’s Bike Rodeo and unveiling of the new PCH safety video.

 

State

Outside rides Eroica California.

The U-T San Diego says hopping on a bike can start a lifetime of fitness, and the best place to ride is your own neighborhood.

Runners and cyclists feed abandoned kitties in Ocean Beach.

Rancho Mirage rejects participating in the planned 50-mile CV Link through the Coachella Valley, preferring to keep bike riders on a dangerous highway.

A 72-year old Saratoga cyclist passed away after suffering an apparent heart attack; he was found on the side of the road with no evidence of a hit-and-run.

Sacramento’s Department of Public Works recommends a goal of converting all the roadways in the city to complete streets — including bike lanes — within 20 years. Hello, LA? Hello?

NorCal’s AAA offers Watch For Bikes mirror stickers to encourage motorists to do just that.

 

National

Six reasons why bicycling is the fastest growing form of transportation. The seventh is because driving is already maxed out.

Biking and waking studies get barely more Fed funding than chicken trucks.

The new biopic about Lance Armstrong could be released in the US later this year.

A new Portland app will automatically count bike riders as they pass through select intersections, while a cyclist in the city catches a confrontation with a car prowler on his helmet cam.

An Alaska cyclist says bike lanes will just be a myth until everyone believes in them.

Someone is sabotaging Arizona mountain bike trails by placing rocks in the path of riders. Whoever is doing it should be charged with assault, if not attempted murder; anyone hitting those rocks without warning could be seriously injured. Or worse.

Proof there are good people in the world. After two Missouri boys steal a bike from a special needs girl, an anonymous Good Samaritan buys her a new one.

 

International

The Mounties offer advice on how to keep your bike safe from thieves, including the suggestion that secure condo bike parking usually isn’t. They also recommend registering your bike so it can be identified if it’s stolen. I’m just saying.

A Brit hit-and-run driver gets seven years for killing a cyclist after claiming he thought he’d hit a wheeled trash bin. So what kind of idiot hits anything without stopping to check?

The Netherland’s 230-foot long solar cell bike path has already generated enough electricity to power a single home for an entire year. Now if we can just build them into every highway and surface street, we might be onto something.

 

Finally…

When bicycles die, their wheels live on as a host to cucumbers and rap battles. A fake water bottle converts your ride to an e-assist bike.

And a new bike ID won’t just identify you if anything happens, it can also open a beer bottle.

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One last note.

In one of those only in LA things, I found myself talking with the woman next to me as we waited for a our laptops to be repaired the other day.

Yes, my little Macbook Pro — not a Powerbook, as the folks at ReaniMac in Hollywood repeatedly corrected me — will be fine, thanks to a new hard drive. In fact, it runs better than ever, which seems like a fair exchange for leaving me a little poorer.

But as we chatted, it turned out that in addition to a successful acting career, Tessie Santiago is also an artist who recently had her first showing.

She started out showing me her paintings of dogs, since I was there with a very bored Corgi. But as she flipped through the images on her phone, she quickly became one of my favorite undiscovered LA artists.

So if you’re feeling artistically inclined, take a look at her work. And if you know someone who owns a gallery, tell ‘em to give her a call, already.

Tessie-Santiago-Bike-Painting

Unfortunately, this is her only painting of a bicycle. And she doesn’t have any paintings of Corgis.

We’ll have to work on her on both counts.

 

Morning Links: It’s Bike Week in LA, meet a real American hero, win a free book and ride a tiny new bike lane

It’s Bike Week in LA.

I’m not going to list all the events here; many others already beat me to it. Which is a big — and welcome — change from years past.

CiclaValley offers a look at the scheduled events for the week, including my personal favorite, the Blessing of the Bicycles. Other highlights include today’s panel discussion on whether bikes are in your future, and Friday’s Bike Night at Union Station. Not to mention Thursday’s Bike to Work Day, with bike trains and pit stops all over the county.

KCRW says bike events are going to be all over the county this week; case in point, Santa Clarita celebrates the Tour of California and Bike to Work Day on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively. KNBC-4 looks at Bike Week activities in Pasadena, while Santa Monica’s Cynergy Cycles is offering a 15% discount all week.

The LA Daily News provides a preview of the week’s events, though someone should explain to them that the point of bicycling is to keep the rubber side down.

And Performance Bike in Santa Monica, which recently moved into the old Wilshire Theater, is appropriately hosting a series of movies at 7 pm each Tuesday throughout May’s Bike Month.

  • 5/5 – Breaking Away
  • 5/12 – American Flyers
  • 5/19 – Pee Wee’s Big Adventure
  • 5/26 – The Bicycle Thief

Admission is free; bring a chair to sit on. Thanks to Jon Riddle for the heads-up.

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One more semi-Bike Week event this week.

This Friday, there will be fundraiser for Ride 2 Recovery at Bob’s Big Boy in Burbank from 3 pm to 9 pm. The event is being held by 14-year old Michelle Morlock to raise $3000 in donations to the organization; the donation will allow her to ride 400 miles with wounded vets from West Point to Annapolis.

If you’re not familiar with Ride 2 Recovery, the group uses bicycling to help veterans, many of whom have suffered life changing injuries, heal from their wounds and come all the way home from the trauma of war.

The highlight of the event will be a chance to meet 94-year old Lt. Col. Robert Friend, one of the last surviving members of the Tuskegee Airmen, one of the most legendary military units of World War II. He will be available for photos and autographs in the parking lot; a donation jar will be available, and if you present the flyer inside, Bob’s Big Boy will donate 15% of your meal ticket to Ride 2 Recovery.

The Airmen not only fought the Nazis, but had to fight discrimination in the army to defend a country where they were treated as second-class citizens. They arguably did as much as anyone to integrate the military and end legal discrimination in America, by proving that African Americans could not only be as good as any other flyers, but were among the best to fight on either side.

My father, who was in his 40’s when I was born, fought in both Europe and the Pacific. He often said he wanted to meet one of the Tuskegee Airmen just to shake his hand and thank him for what they did.

On Friday, I hope to do it for him.

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It’s been awhile since we’ve held a contest on here. So in honor of Bike Week, let’s do something about that right now.

Pilgrim Wheels - front coverLast week, I received a press release announcing a new book by Colorado author Neil Hanson, Pilgrim Wheels: Reflections of a Cyclist Crossing America.

Here’s the description from the publisher:

An inspirational story of journey, discovery, and place, Pilgrim Wheels describes Neil Hanson’s 2011 journey by bicycle across the United States. His bicycle ride becomes the canvas for an incredible adventure: a pilgrimage of wonder as he explores the people he meets along the path, the obstacles he faces, the pain he endures, and the boundless joy he achieves as he completes the first half of his journey to the humid farmland east of Medicine Lodge, Kansas. A beautifully written and reflective memoir, Pilgrim Wheels provides a glimpse into the sweetness of physical achievement, the inspired awe that comes from the sheer beauty of our country’s majestic back roads, and the warmth and love shared by the people who welcome Hanson into their lives along the way.

You can read more about the book and the author on his website.

Hanson has generously offered to give a copy of the book to a lucky BikinginLA reader. All you have to do is click the link below and enter with your Facebook account or email address by end of day Friday.

Win a copy of Pilgrim Wheels!

Good luck!

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Westwood has been famous in recent years for the ridiculous 275 foot long bike lane on Galey Avenue in Westwood.

Now Richard Rosenthal sends photographic evidence of an even more absurd bike lane on Sepulveda Blvd in El Segundo.

The lane channels bike riders to the left of right turning cars for a whopping 50 yards, if that, before throwing them back into traffic on the busy, high speed thoroughfare.

Sepulvrda Bike Lane

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The Amgen Tour of California is underway, as Mark Cavendish wins the first stage; allergies knocked California’s Andrew Talansky out of the race.

The LA Times says New Jersey native Carter Jones is excited to be back in the US racing on American soil. Before the race even started, though, a woman taking a wide turn on a Sacramento area bike path took out some of the pros out on a training ride, including Peter Sagan.

The Sacramento Bee says pro cycling could use a showman or two, while anti-doping agencies team up to keep the race clean.

Sadly, the women’s race is over just as the men are getting started, after just three stages, although there will be a invitational time trial in Big Bear on Friday.

Lauren Komanski led the women’s race after two stages, but dropped to third as Trixi Worrack took the overall title; Leah Kirchman won the final stage to finish second. Meanwhile, a member of British royalty rode in the peloton after competing in the Paralympics.

On the other side of the Atlantic, Simon Gerrans looks pretty in pink after winning the team time trial in the Giro d’Italia. And don’t try this at home, kids — a fixie riding race fan gets the blame for crashing into the peloton at the end of the second stage of the.

……..

Somehow I missed this one from last week.

A Georgia father of three was killed when the driver of a pickup crossed the double yellow line on a blind curve to illegally pass another truck, slamming into a group of riders. The driver faces charges of felony vehicular homicide and reckless driving.

Thanks to Mike Kim for the heads-up.

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Local

A counter-press conference will be held at 8 am tomorrow at Red Car River Park to protest plans to rebuild the Hyperion bridge without a sidewalk. Everyone who supports Option 3 to include bike lanes and sidewalks on the bridge is urged to attend.

A bike rider was hospitalized after being hit by a car in Valencia.

About 3,000 riders turn out for the Tour of Long Beach, raising $350,000 for juvenile cancer research.

 

State

A Riverside county supervisor defends the troubled plan for a 50-mile bike and pedestrian path from Desert Hot Springs to the Salton Sea.

Hats off to tiny Guadalupe (population 7225), which closed down three miles of streets for the town’s first ciclovía.

The bike riding managing editor of the Stockton Record says we all need to share the road; a windshield-addled commenter says why not share railroad tracks and airport runways, too.

A San Francisco college instructor says a road raging driver repeatedly tried to run him down as he rode his bike; the final assault was captured on video.

 

National

Tucson cyclists get a new two-way separated bike lane. For one whole block, before dumping riders into traffic on the left side of a three lane one-way street.

The Colorado Rockies radio announcer will take a sabbatical to compete in RAAM as part of a two-person team to raise funds for a Haitian orphanage.

Remarkably, cyclists have no legal right-of-way when riding through Nebraska intersections; state lawmakers vote to keep it that way.

Wisconsin’s conservative governor takes aim at the state’s Complete Streets law by removing the requirement to make streets safe for bicyclists and pedestrians, claiming it’s merely an attempt to remove a regulatory burden. Right.

A bike path sparked a $200 million redevelopment in Minneapolis. Yes, a bike path; let’s hope Wisconsin’s governor is listening.

Ohio could require children up to 16 to wear helmets.

Sad news from Philadelphia, as a local filmmaker is killed while riding his bike. Note to Philly.com: There is nothing inevitable about traffic collisions; they can actually be avoided if people care enough to pay attention and obey the law.

Nearly 2,000 law enforcement officers ride from New York’s Ground Zero to Washington DC to honor fellow officers killed in the line of duty; 300 cops from Southern California took part.

A Virginia cyclist reportedly swerved into the path of a driver who had safely moved over to pass. Sure, let’s go with that. Note to WYDaily.com: A bike rider is a human being, not an “it.”

 

International

A new Australian electric bicycle professes to fix what’s wrong with other e-bikes.

Evidently, requiring helmets hasn’t done enough to force riders off the road, so an unworkable requirement is in the works as an Aussie state considers yet another step to stifle the growth in bicycling by requiring bikes to be licensed to curb “lunatic” cyclists.

Thai cyclists say drunk drivers who kill should be charged with premeditated murder instead of reckless driving. Couldn’t agree more; drunks who merely injure or maim someone should be charged with attempted murder.

Another good idea from Thailand — drivers on shared lanes should be limited to 30 kmh, the equivalent of just 18 mph.

 

Finally…

A writer for London’s Telegraph can’t seem to grasp that different people enjoy different styles of bike riding — including, yes, riding in Lycra. Another new study from the University of Duh says it’s pretty much useless to ride with a hangover.

And more proof bike riders are tough, as a San Diego man rides to a friend’s house for help after being stabbed at a 7-11.

 

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