Archive for The business of bikes

Morning Links: #BikeLA on TV, the value of bicycling, and an early morning bike theft caught on video

Wednesday’s episode of Major Crimes on TNT is about someone intentionally running down bike riders on the streets of Los Angeles, including one stereotypical rider with a GoPro fastened firmly to his helmet.

Evidently, it’s a documentary.

Thanks to Gil Solomon for the heads-up.

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As long as we’re talking TV programs, don’t worry if you missed Monday’s airing of the Ovarian Psychos documentary on the PBS series Independent Lens.

You can download it from their website, or via Roku or Apple TV.

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If you need to put a dollar sign on bicycling, consider this from a new Minnesota study.

…the state’s bike industry produces $780 million in annual economic activity, 5,519 jobs and millions of dollars in health care savings because of reduced obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

Just imagine what a bike friendly California could do, with better weather and over seven times the population.

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This is why you don’t trust bike parking area’s in your building’s garage, even if it seems like a great idea.

Ashley Grohosky forwards video of a bike thief casually shopping the bike racks in her Culver City building at 4 am until he gets out the bolt cutters after selecting the one he wants.

Hers.

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Sad news from Germany, where a cyclist is reportedly fighting for his life after a driver strayed into the middle of bike race, in the crash we mentioned yesterday. Another rider is in critical condition, while a third competitor and a race marshal were also injured.

Good thing the doping era is over. A Brazilian cycling team faces a one year suspension after five riders have been caught cheating since July.

Fixing the cobbles for next month’s Paris – Roubaix, aka the Hell of the North.

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Local

Santa Monica’s Montana Ave is getting new smart traffic signals that can extend a green light to give bike riders more time to cross.

Streetsblog considers Sunday’s Culver City to Venice CicLAvia; next up is a Glendale to Atwater Village route in June, along with a handful of other open streets events.

Speaking of which, if you read this early enough, you may still have time for a brief open streets tour of the Long Beach Grand Prix course from 11:30 am to 1 pm today.

The LACBC’s next Sunday Funday ride will explore Downtown LA this Sunday with The Crafty Pedal.

You may have already noticed the new ad for my favorite Bike Week event over there on the right. After all, a little divine intervention couldn’t hurt.

 

State

A San Diego bike rider is angry that she was given a ticket for running a stop sign. That’s the chance you take when you break the law, whatever the reason — at least until the proposed Idaho Stop law passes. And the unlikely event that Governor Brown actually signs it.

An Op-Ed in the San Jose Mercury News considers how to get more people riding bikes in Silicon Valley.

Caltrans is looking for input on where to put separated bikeways in the Bay Area, which is one way to get more people riding.

 

National

Realtor.com com ranks Salt Lake City as the #1 American city for Millennials, in part because of its bikeway network; Los Angeles ranks #6 despite its lack of one.

For the next four weeks, bike riders will have the roads of Yellowstone to themselves. It’s sort of like CicLAvia, but with geysers. And bears.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a bicycle from a homeless man in Lubbock TX, just a week after local cops gave it to him so he could get to his two jobs, in an attempt to get him and his wife off the streets.

Streetsblog describes how a Toledo OH mom led a grassroots campaign to stop a road widening. But why is it always assumed that mom’s are somehow less capable or involved than other women? Or men, for that matter?

A newly rebuilt bridge will provide a key connection in a shared-use pathway linking New Jersey’s two largest cities.

 

International

The worldwide bike industry is expected to be worth over $70 billion by 2026.

Now that’s more like it. Canadian prosecutors are asking for twelve years behind bars and a 15 to 18-year driving ban for a drunk driver who killed two bicyclists, as well as the passenger in his own car.

A London writer travels all of the city’s blue cycle superhighways, concluding that some are better than others, depending on how much the local borough supports bicycling. On the other hand, London has somehow managed to squeeze seven onto the city’s crowded, narrow and curving streets, with plans for three more. Yet LA can’t manage to build one on our wide, straight streets.

Welcome to England, where assaulting a bicyclist in a fit of bus-driving road rage is only worth the equivalent of a $500 fine.

A British panel rules that a bike courier deserves holiday pay even though he is technically self-employed.

Britain’s Cyclist offers 23 “free and easy cycling hacks” to improve your rides. For a change, most of the ideas aren’t bad. Even if they aren’t actually all free.

Caught on video: A Brit man uses his own bike to smash the windshield of a driver who he blamed for cutting him off in the bike lane, even though the driver denied doing it. Seriously, just ride away; now he’s the one police are looking for.

A German cyclist offers four lessons he learned riding through every nation on earth over the past decade.

This is why people continue to die on the streets. A drunk driver walks in Malta even though the judge ruled he was mostly responsible for a wreck that killed a cyclist, because the victim was riding in the street without lights on his bike. So blame the victim, don’t punish the killer, and set him loose to do it again.

Former Tour de France stage winner David Millar is working to turn flat, sandy, 100 degree-plus Dubai into a cycling destination.

The flood of Chinese app-based bikeshare systems have claimed it’s first victim, as Singapore cancels plans for a nationwide dock-based bikeshare.

One of those Chinese bikeshare companies will now pay you to ride their bikes if you find one in an outlying area.

So far, though, Chinese bike makers have managed to handle the boom in business.

 

Finally…

We only have to avoid LA drivers; cyclists in the Scottish Highlands have to dodge sheep. And if you get stranded on your bamboo bike while riding your kilt, at least you can eat it.

The bike that is, not the kilt.

Okay, maybe the kilt.

 

Guest post: Looking for a Bike? Shop Local and Shop Small. You’ll Be Glad You Did.

Last week, I asked if any bike shop owners or employees wanted to explain why you should do business with your local bike shop this holiday season.

First to respond was Linda Coburn of Pedego 101 in Westlake Village, who explained the importance of buying your ebike locally.

Today we hear from David Kooi, owner of Santa Monica Mountains Cyclery in Woodland Hills, one of the city’s most popular shops for road and off-road riders alike.

Not to mention the shop that created one of the bike world’s most brilliant marketing efforts by partnering with the car dealership across the street to allow people to trade in their car for a new bicycle a few years ago.

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By David Kooi

Are you looking for a bike? Here are some reasons why you should visit your local bike shop.

Personal Attention and Friendly Expert Advice

Choosing the right bike isn’t always easy. These days, there is a different bike for just about every type of riding and terrain. A good local bike shop is staffed with friendly, helpful experts. Go in and talk to them about the kind of riding you would like to do. They will help you make the right decision. Choosing the right bike will ensure that you’ll get the most from your purchase. If you pick the right bike, you’ll enjoy riding it. And, if you enjoy riding it, you’ll ride it more often. If you pick the wrong bike, it might languish, covered in dust, in your garage. And nobody wants that.

cute-kid-on-a-bike

Quality Products

The bikes you’ll find at your local specialty shop are usually better quality bikes than you’ll find online, at department stores, or at big box retailers. Why? Most of the best bike manufacturers only sell their bikes through local, independent shops. Why would they do that when they might be able to sell so many more bikes online or at Wal-Mart and Costco? It’s because they recognize the importance of dedicated specialty shops. They count on these shops to educate their customers on the value and features of their bikes. And they trust these shops to build, fit, and service those bikes properly and professionally.

A Professional Bike Build

When a bike arrives at a shop or at your local Target, it’s in a box full of parts. Some of it is partially assembled in a far-away factory, but it needs a good amount of work and fine-tuning to get it ready to ride. Whom do you trust to build your bike? At a good local bike shop, your bike will be assembled by an experienced professional mechanic and test-ridden for safety. When you go out for your first ride, you can be confident that the bike is safe.

Fitting

Bikes come in difference sizes. Then, within each size, the bike needs to be adjusted to the individual rider. If you buy the wrong size or don’t get a proper fit, you probably won’t be happy with your bike. When the bike is set up perfectly for you, you’ll be comfortable and happy – and you’ll ride it a lot more. And, if you’re a rider for whom speed matters, a properly fit bike will make you faster. When you buy your bike from a local shop, the bike fit is often included with the purchase of your bike. Further, if you need additional guidance on how to use the bike, most shops are happy to teach you about how to use the shifting, the brakes, and other essential features.

group-cruiser-ride

Maintenance

Bikes, much like cars, need maintenance. Some maintenance can be performed at home, like keeping the right amount of air in the tires, cleaning the bike, and lubing the chain. Your neighborhood shop can teach you how to do those things. More complex repairs and maintenance should be performed by experienced mechanics. A good local bike shop is home to such people. Furthermore, some amount of maintenance is typically included with your purchase when you buy from a local shop.

Accessories

When you get a new bike, you’ll likely need some other items to maximize your enjoyment of that bike. The friendly, knowledgeable experts at your local bike shop can help. The right pair of gloves can help with numb fingers. The right pair of shorts can literally save your butt. A good set of lights and a properly fitting helmet could save your life. A well-stocked flat/repair kit could save you from an Uber ride home. Or maybe you just want some flashy, fancy socks to match your new ride? Whatever you need, a good local bike shop will have the expertise and the selection to help you.

david-with-local-school-kids

Community

Your neighborhood shop is often a hub for the local cycling community. They can tell you about where to ride, about local events, and about local clubs and teams. They also might host clinics and classes about bike safety, bike handling, bike repair, and bike maintenance.

A good local bike shop also gives back to your community. At my shop, we work with local elementary schools to help get more kids on bikes. We teach local Boy Scout troops about bike safety. We donate bikes to the local Boys & Girls Club for kids in need. We sponsor a mountain bike team at a local high school. And we’re always looking for opportunities to do more. That’s how communities work.

boys-and-girls-club

You can also get to know the people who work at your local shop. Most employees are passionate about cycling and excited to talk about it with anyone. Employees don’t turn over at the same high rate as the big box retailers. You can get to you know them. They’ll recognize you when you come in the door. In these days of the Internet and Big Box domination, you might find it nice to have a small, welcoming place to go where everybody knows your name. And they’re always glad you came. At most shops, you are welcome to stop by and say hello and check out the newest gear – even when you don’t have any plans to buy anything new. Or, imagine you find yourself out riding and want to refill a water bottle. Someday, a drone sent by Amazon.com will fly up to you to refill it for you, but in the meantime, feel free to stop by a shop along your route.

SMMC staff Michael B., David Kooi, Mike P., and Patrick O.

SMMC staff Michael B., David Kooi, Mike P., and Patrick O.

A Vibrant Local Economy

Do you want to make a difference in the local economy and in the lives of your neighbors? When you spend $500 at a small local business, you change their day. You get noticed. You get remembered. When you shop local and shop small, your money matters. The money you spend helps to pay the rent. Your money keeps the lights on. Your money pays the salaries of people working there. Those people, in turn, use that money to shop locally and the cycle continues. They pay for tuition. They buy stuff for their kids. They go out to eat at local restaurants. Your money keeps storefronts occupied, keeps your streets and sidewalks clean, and helps sustain a vibrant community. When you shop local, you make a difference.

When you spend $500 at Target, Wal-Mart, or Amazon, you won’t move their quarterly earnings per share one tenth of one penny. You’re just a tiny part of a larger demographic.

Price

Don’t assume that you’ll get the better deal online. Give your local shop a chance. You might be surprised to discover that your local shop is competitive with online prices, especially when you factor in the value of the products they are selling and other services provided. And, in the end, maybe you’ll find yourself willing to spend a few extra bucks for the friendly, expert service, the quality products, and to contribute to your community and local economy.

storefront

About the Author

David Kooi is the owner of Santa Monica Mountains Cyclery in Woodland Hills, California.

Santa Monica Mountains Cyclery, 21526 Ventura Blvd, Woodland Hills, CA 91364

david@smmcyclery.com

818-456-4105

www.smmcyclery.com

www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-mountains-cyclery-woodland-hills

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If any other bike shop owners or employees want to weigh in on the subject, just email me at the address on the About page.

It's the 2nd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive! Donate today to help keep SoCal's best source for bike news coming your way every day.

Donate to the 2nd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive to help keep Southern California’s best source for bike news coming your way every day.

 

 

 

Morning Links: Introducing LA’s Peace Bicycles, Giro starts today, and don’t ride with a pellet gun in your pants

The May BikinginLA LACBC Membership drive is now up to eight new members of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, with just 92 more to go before the end of this month. So sign up now and let’s get this into double figures today.

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I’m a firm believer in supporting SoCal bike businesses.

Which is why I want to take a moment to introduce you to LA-based Peace Bicycles, makers of some pretty good looking seven-speed Dutch-style city bikes, in both step through and straight bar models.

The step through is available in your choice of colors, while the non-step through version, like the Model T, appears to come in any color you want, as long as it’s black.

Although I particularly like the fact that you can get it in a fully loaded commuter package, complete with panniers, lights and a cup holder.

european-commuter-bikes-1

peace-bicycles-buy-bikes-4-

And a portion of every sale goes towards buying a bike for someone in need.

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Sad news, as 21-year old Dutch cyclist Gijs Verdick suffered a pair of heart attacks while in Poland for a race, leading to brain damage from a lack of oxygen.

Bleacher Report previews the Giro d’Italia, which starts today with a time trial, while a Canadian sportswriter calls it bike racing’s ultimate test. Unfortunately, the Amgen Tour of California starts just one week later, weakening the field for both races.

Bicycling Magazine highlights six tour packages to see the Tour de France.

Ironman will now start checking triathletes’ bikes for signs of motor doping. When they find hidden motors in their Speedos, it will really be time to worry.

A German Paralympic cyclist hopes to compete in Rio using a 3D-printed prosthetic leg.

And maybe race motos have a purpose after all; a new study shows three of them following ten inches off your wheel cuts drag as much as 14 per cent.

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Local

Caught on video: CiclaValley and friends get buzzed on Nichols Canyon.

Richard Risemberg says LA doesn’t need a bike month when we can ride the other eleven months as well, but as long as we have one, you might as well enjoy it.

Evidently, it’s a crime to ride your bike in Sherman Oaks with a pellet gun stuffed in your pants. Or maybe just really stupid.

Culver City Walk ‘n Rollers will host a Kidical Mass Fun Ride on May 15th. Isn’t there something else happening that day?

Pasadena police bust a thief after reports of a suspicious person stealing a bicycle, catching him with the stolen bike in a stolen car filled with stolen property.

More than 50 Glendale elementary school students rode their bikes on Bike to School Day, accompanied by members of Bike Walk Glendale.

 

State

Like Santa Monica’s recent crackdowns, Newport Beach police will be on the lookout for traffic violations that threaten the safety of cyclists and pedestrians on Saturday and Wednesday.

It takes a real schmuck to flee the scene after running down a Goleta teenager riding his bike to school — on Bike to School Day, no less; fortunately, he only suffered minor injuries.

San Francisco installs a new bike barometer to count cyclists on Valencia Street, to go with one already installed on Market Street, and two more on the way.

Oakland drivers can’t seem to figure out the new parking protected bike lanes on Telegraph Avenue. Then again, Cincinnati drivers still haven’t caught on after two years.

UC Davis students vote bicycling as the best form of transportation.

Oroville police are able to bust a bike thief off Craigslist because the victim’s parents had recorded the serial number. You can register your bike for free with Bike Index right here, including serial number and photos.

 

National

No surprise here. A new study shows bike riders absorb up to twice as much pollutants when riding in urban traffic than in low traffic or off-street routes.

Lifehacker offers a practical guide to biking in the city, while saying being too cautious on the road can be dangerous.

People for Bikes says the overly graphic Phoenix bike safety novels and Playmobil bike crash play set send the wrong message to kids. Gee, you think?

A much smaller Livestrong adjusts to life without Lance.

Forget riding across the US; an Ohio man ended his 8,300 mile ride around the perimeter of the US in Portland on Tuesday, raising over $16,500 for Habitat for Humanity.

Equestrians often blame bike riders for damaging trails; a group of Oregon horse riders prove it goes both ways.

No charges in the Boulder CO crash that seriously injured former pro cyclist Phil Zajicek this past March, as police determine the driver wasn’t at fault and decline to ticket Zajicek for crossing onto the wrong side of the road while descending. Evidently, they think the loss of his arm is punishment enough.

Denver will get new bike lanes and upgrades to existing ones, including a three-mile buffered bike lane and a green wave to keep riders from having to stop at red lights. Meanwhile, a Denver bike rider’s helmet is crushed when a bus door closes on it; he’s just grateful his head wasn’t in it.

A Cincinnati civil rights attorney rides his bike as a way of life.

Caught on video: A Tennessee bike rider can thank a 911 caller for saving his life; the caller was already on the phone with the 911 operator to report a near miss when a jerk in a pickup plowed into the rider and just kept going.

Things are getting better for Atlanta bike riders, though the city still has a long way to go.

 

International

If you build it, they will come. Vancouver has already exceeded it’s goal of a 7% mode share for bicycling by 2020 after building a network of protected bike lanes. Which shows what could happen here if LA ever gets serious about building a safe, connected network to get riders where they need to go.

After much debate, Toronto votes to install physically separated cycle tracks on a major street on a trial basis.

The head of Great Britain’s cycling organization resigns following accusations of sexism. Meanwhile, a writer for the Telegraph says without greater transparency, the scandal risks spreading to the country’s cycling team. Thanks to David Wolfberg for the heads-up.

A new theft-resistant bike light currently raising funds on Kickstarter is built into the handlebars, requiring someone to dismantle your bike to steal it. Which never stopped any committed thief before.

A London writer says ditch the Lycra because it’s bad for the soul and almost no one looks good in it. No one says you have to wear spandex, just as no one should tell you not to; what works for one rider and one type of riding doesn’t make it right or wrong for anyone else. So get over it, already.

Evidently not satisfied with merely running bike riders over, the head of Britain’s Ryanair says cyclists should be taken out and shot because bike lane construction interferes with parking his car. No, really. And at a conference sponsored by the US Embassy, no less. I’d say more, but I can’t figure out how to react to his comments without using words like “f***ing,” “twit” and “jackass.” Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link.

 

Finally…

Seriously, no matter how pissed off you get, don’t beat a driver and his car with your U-lock. Evidently, you can forget how to ride a bike, after all.

And if you’re going to steal a bike, make sure you wear shoes that will stay on — and leave the cocaine at home.

 

Morning Links: Bikeshare safer than cycling, challenging LA’s stupidest bike lane, and re-striping Washington Blvd

It was a busy weekend in the bike world.

So get comfortable. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover.

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Evidently, bikeshare is safer than other forms of bicycling.

According to a new study, not one person has been killed while using a bikeshare bike anywhere in the US, with over 35 million rides in at least 94 systems.

And despite the overwhelming lack of helmet use.

That compares with an estimated fatality rate of 21 deaths per 100 million bicycling trips. Which means statistically, we could have expected at least seven bikeshare deaths so far. And there hasn’t been.

Among other factors, the study credits the heavy, slow bikes typical of bikeshare, and the fact that bikeshare trips are usually taken in urban areas where traffic tends to move slower.

Though there are exceptions.

My take is that in addition to being heavy, most bikeshare bikes are made with a step-through design, which makes them easy to jump off of in the event of danger or a fall.

Hopefully that track record will continue as bikeshare begins to spread through the LA area.

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Maybe we need a tape measure.

Streetsblog discovers a one-block long bike lane in Pleasanton that they say may be the shortest bike lane in California; a city official admits that yes, it’s short, but it’s a little better than nothing.

Don’t send the trophy up to the Bay Area yet, though.

It was just eight years ago when Slate declared a one-block long bike lane on Galey in Westwood the Stupidest Bike Lane in America.

A title it should hold on to, even if Pleasanton’s measures out a little shorter.

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My spies tell me the lane markers have all been stripped out on Washington Blvd between the Marina and Sepulveda Blvd, apparently so the lanes can be realigned, with the existing bike lanes extended all the way to Sepulveda.

Let’s hope the lanes are being moved to make room for a buffer. Or better yet, protected lanes.

After all, the new protected lanes on Venice look pretty comfy. Maybe once LA drivers get used to the ide, we can turn those bollards into planters.

Thanks to Margaret for the tip.

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bikesbelongposterIn a piece that should be mandatory reading for everyone in the bicycle industry, British bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid says if bike makers and sellers want the bicycle market to grow, spending on advocacy is an investment, not an expense.

Many of the current crop of unpaid promoters of our products are burning the candle at both ends, working tirelessly in their free time to get more people on bicycles. With substantial financial and moral support these advocates could truly work wonders. It’s shocking, really, that the industry stays largely aloof from such a passionate and committed volunteer army. (Bikes Belong in the US, and the Cycling Industry Club initiative from the European Cyclists’ Federation are stand-out examples of how the worlds of advocacy and the industry can meet in the middle.)

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April Fools Day came and went. And as usual, it didn’t leave the bike world out.

Streetsblog says LA’s Great Streets will now be named after the councilmembers whose districts they’re in, which means Koretz and Cedillo will have their names permanently attached to failed streets they’ve made. We could only wish that one was true.

West Hollywood comes up with a brilliant name for their coming bikeshare system — Bikey McBikeface.

Cyclocross Magazine says the 19-year old Belgian motor-doper is making a comeback at the Sea Otter Classic’s e-mountain bike race.

How about a bike helmet that doubles as a pour-over coffee maker?

And Google launches a self-driving bicycle in the Netherlands. Although that may not be as much of a joke as they seem to think.

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Lots of news from the racing world this weekend.

Slovakian pro Peter Sagan won Belgian’s Tour of Flanders on Sunday, overcoming a string of second-place finishes to claim his first Monument.

Meanwhile, a team mechanic became the latest person to be struck by a race vehicle when he was run down by an Etixx-QuickStep team car; no word on whether he was injured.

A writer for the Guardian says the death of Belgian pro cyclist Antoine Demoitié in a collision with a race moto — 66 years after a French rider suffered the same fate — should be a wake-up call for pro cycling’s overly crowded races. This crap is going to continue until race vehicles are required to remain behind the peloton. If a rider suffers a mechanical, he — or she — can wait until the peloton has passed, or just fix himself like the great riders of the past.

British world champ Lizzie Armitstead won the women’s Tour of Flanders in a photo-finish sprint to claim her fourth major victory of the year.

Eleven-time British world champ Anna Meares still suffers pain, eight years after she went from a wheelchair to the Olympic podium in just eight months following a bad fall while competing in Los Angeles.

A Taiwanese amateur cyclist feels the need, the need for speed, while an Aussie woman prepares to compete in triathlon at the Rio Paralympics just 18 months after taking up the sport — and despite being born with just one hand.

And a London doctor claims that he helped dope 150 athletes, including unnamed top British Tour de France cyclists; the Telegraph says a 39-year old amateur cyclist rolled over on the doc to get a reduced sentence from doping authorities.

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Local

Councilmember David Ryu’s staff continues to study the Rowena Ave road diet.

Streetsblog suggest supporting the inaugural Los Angeles Bicycle Festival on Kickstarter, while Bike Talk talks with LABF founder Nona Varnardo, as well as our friend and frequent linkee Richard Risemberg.

No bias here. A Santa Monica paper says a cyclist was arrested riding salmon while carrying burglary tools in a hot spot for break-ins. Chances are, they would never refer to the alleged thief as a motorist or pedestrian in the headline under similar circumstances.

The blog post may have come out on April 1st, but it’s no joke that Santa Monica’s Breeze bikeshare is ready for the opening of the Expo Line and all the people it will bring looking for a way to explore the city or travel the last few blocks to their destination.

 

State

San Diego’s Downtown News looks at opposition to the city’s bike and pedestrian plan for the downtown area.

The 32nd annual Redlands Bicycle Classic starts this Wednesday, while fans of vintage bicycles will want to turn out for Paso Robles’ annual three-day Eroica California starting this Friday.

A self-righteous Clovis letter writer says cyclists have to stop being self-righteous and “assume responsibility for the proper use of their toys.” Yes, toys.

San Francisco’s People Behaving Badly reporter goes looking for bicyclists with earbuds in both ears. Nice to know they’ve solved all the other safety problems in Bagdad by the Bay.

A writer from New Jersey outs himself and his family as a few of those tourists on rental bikes that people in Sausalito claim are ruining their fair city; no such objections seem to have arisen from their ride through Yosemite, though.

Marin sheriff’s deputies will be lying in wait for the rogue one percent of mountain bikers who exceed the 15 mph speed limit on county trails.

A Fairfield driver faces DUI charges for running down a drunk salmon cyclist; he told police he’d supported his two-gram-a-day habit by using meth 30 times that day before getting behind the wheel.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to climb hills.

The Christian Science Monitor explains the benefits of bicycling attire, especially for long rides. Seriously, you don’t need spandex to enjoy your ride, but it does make a difference.

After high-stakes gambler Dan Bilzerian won his $1.2 million bet by riding from LA to Vegas in less than 48 hours, the New York post calls him the biggest jerk on Instagram. Judging by the little I’ve seen of his fascination for guns and boobs, you won’t get any argument from me.

Las Vegas police stopped the driver of an off-road vehicle but somehow let him go, just one hour before he killed a bicyclist while driving under the influence.

A Boulder CO company acts like a legal chop shop by breaking down bikes and selling the parts on eBay.

A Colorado city will vote Tuesday on whether to require bicyclists to ride single file through town, despite a state law allowing cyclists to ride two abreast.

In a horrifying hit-and-run reminiscent of the crash that nearly took the life of Finish the Ride founder Damian Kevitt, a Texas woman survives after being dragged several blocks under a truck as the driver fled the scene. But unlike the jerk who ran down Kevitt, this driver was found and arrested, held on a $100,000 bond and an immigration detainer. Thanks to Steve Katz for the heads-up.

Thanks to a Michigan company, your next bike may have a spring instead of a down tube.

Great piece from the Washington Post refuting five myths about bicycling. Although I’d quibble with the suggestion that it wouldn’t make much of a dent in congestion even if more people rode bikes.

A North Carolina cyclist thanks the driver who said her tire was flat, and drove home to get an air compressor to fix it.

 

International

Bike Radar lists seven rookie mistakes that could ruin your ride to work.

Chances are, you sit on something made by the most powerful woman in cycling every time you ride.

An anti-bike British lawyer says police are ignoring law-breaking cyclists, to which nearly everyone else says au contraire.

A new study says Brits support bike lanes across virtually all age and political groups, even if it means a longer commute.

Caught on video: A British bike rider tries to pass a bus. And fails.

Protected bike lanes come to Belfast, though drivers don’t seem to get it yet.

A new bike tour takes tourists on a post-midnight ride through the streets of Mumbai. Now that sounds like fun.

A Maltese cyclist says animals get more respect than bike riders; “No one honks at a horse, but cyclists are often harassed.”

An Australian website says the risk of riding in large cities is extremely low, while the individual and social benefits are high.

 

Finally…

When you crash your car while driving under the influence with a suspended license while carrying drug paraphernalia and prescription meds, “borrowing” a bike to make your getaway may not be the best idea. Now you can print your own parts for an ugly ass ebike.

And good luck selling this stolen bike.

 

Morning Links: Temple City shoots down safe streets on Las Tunas; ridiculous and sublime new bike offerings

Temple City voted last week to shoot itself in the foot.

The city council threw away four years of public meetings — and $6 million in funding — devoted to revitalizing Las Tunas Drive through the city.

The council had been presented with three plans to remake the roadway into a Complete Street that would serve the needs of all road users, as well as the greater community — two involving road diets and bike lanes, and one which would accommodate bike lanes by narrowing the existing traffic lanes.

But even though the third option would have had no effect on traffic flow, other than improving safety, the council voted to do nothing in the face of opposition from some mostly older residents.

Here’s just part of what Boyonabike’s John Lloyd had to say on the subject:

It was a setback for the region, and leaves Las Tunas a dangerous commuter arterial instead of a vibrant center for local people and businesses.  I have no doubt that the people of Temple City will eventually see the light, but in the meantime the design of Las Tunas remains stuck in the past, serving only a part of the community’s needs, forcing everyone else into a steel box….

When we create a transportation system that only works for cars, we create a partial system that excludes and marginalizes people who can’t afford cars, don’t want a car, or who are unable to drive.  We essentially force all but the most experienced and confident (or desperate) to buy into the car system.  Once people buy into that system they expect cities to design infrastructure for their convenience, which further reinforces the incompleteness of this unsafe, inequitable, unsustainable, people-unfriendly system.

Meanwhile, Andrew Yip forwards a letter from a Realtor organization that set out to rile up opponents of the plan in advance of last week’s meeting.

Let’s see how many obvious errors you can spot in it.

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Never mind that bike lanes like the ones proposed for Las Tunas have been repeatedly shown to not just improve safety, but boost sales for local businesses, reduce business vacancy rates and increase property values for homeowners in the surrounding area.

Maybe those property owners would have liked to know some of that before they were roused into voicing their opposition and cowing the council.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misidentified the city as Rosemead, rather than Temple City. Thanks to John Lloyd and Andrew Yip for the correction.

………

Let’s catch up on a little new bike news.

Why bother putting fenders on your bike when you can just buy a $3,570 bike with front and rear mud guards built into the carbon fiber frame?

Just what every kid needs. A $2,775 carbon fiber mountain bike designed for children from four to seven; at least the frame is adjustable as they grow. Did I mention it costs nearly three grand?

And here’s the perfect bike for your next CicLAvia.

Meanwhile, a nice essay by Anna Schwinn in Bicycle Times suggests the reason fewer women ride bikes starts with the bike itself, in an industry that caters to men and offers few models in women’s sizes. And even then, usually lower quality at a higher price. Thanks to Richard Risemberg for the link.

………

Local

The new documentary about East LA’s Ovarian Psycho’s scheduled to premier at South by Southwest has just 15 days to raise another $15,000 to get funded.

KPCC reports on the battle over the Mariposa Street Bridge, where Burbank officials recently voted to ban the mere presence of bicycles lest they frighten the horses.

LADOT Bike Blog celebrates the 20th anniversary of the city’s successful sidewalk bike rack program; you can request a bike rack at your favorite location by filling out this form. I’m requesting racks at a couple of medical buildings I visit far too often; it’s absurd that offices dedicated to health force their patients and staff to drive because there’s no safe bike parking for blocks around.

Burbank is planning an “epic day of celebration” at this year’s Burbank on Parade on April 23rd, including a mini-CicLAvia sponsored by Walk Bike Burbank.

Hawthorne plans to upgrade Hawthorne Blvd, including extending bike lanes through the once-thriving area.

 

State

Calbike is asking the state Air Resources Board to extend their Clean Vehicle Rebate Program to cover up to half the cost of a bicycle, since bikes are cleaner than the greenest car.

The father and son team of Darryl and Bryce Headrick were officially charged with felony aggravated assault on a peace officer on Tuesday, after allegedly attacking a cop who tried to stop Headrick the Younger on suspicion of biking under the influence last week.

Another case of a hit-and-run driver running down a jogger in a bike lane, this time in San Diego. And this time, with her 3-year old daughter in the car; she also hit two parked cars for good measure.

Duel doctorates in aeronautics and astronautics, cyclocross racer and a top 20 finisher in the collegiate national road cycling championships. Not a bad resume for this San Benito County woman.

A UC Berkeley student says common sense on the part of drivers and pedestrians can help prevent collisions with cyclists. Common sense on the part of bike riders can go a long way, too.

 

National

The Verge looks at Portland’s new bikeshare program, financed with $10 million from Nike.

A Seattle man bought a bike off a man carrying bolt cutters for $20, assuming it was stolen. Then put an ad on Craigslist offering to return it to the owner for free.

Iowa moves forward with a bill that would require drivers to change lanes to pass a bike rider.

Nice piece from NBC Sports on a Minnesota pro cyclist who gave up his career so his Olympic triathlete wife could be the best in the world at hers.

Yet another case of a car being used as a weapon, as a Massachusetts man faces charges for intentionally running down a 15-year old bike rider before fleeing the scene. Maybe we should require background checks and waiting periods before being allowed to buy a car.

Many LA cyclists stay home when the temperature dips below 70 degrees; these Pittsburgh bike messengers ride with a chill factor of 11 below.

Philadelphia plans to build 30 miles of protected bike lanes by 2021, while my platinum-level bike friendly hometown intends to join them by building protected lanes on most arterials streets.

The parents of a Delaware student who was knocked down by a bike rider has sued the university for failing to ban bikes from sidewalks; the victim is still in a coma four months later.

Virginia legislators kill a bill that would have required children under 18 to wear a helmet when riding a bike. Meanwhile, this is what it looks like when a driver violates Virginia’s three-foot passing law.

 

International

An Alaska man would have finished third in the 1,000 mile Yukon Quest sled dog race if he had been mushing instead of riding a bike. Even though he was nearly deported by Canadian border officials for not having the right paperwork.

A 12-year old British boy will be “strongly advised” in front of his parents after police catch him riding his bike anticlockwise on a busy freeway.

 

Finally…

Nothing like taking your songbirds out for a bike ride. The next Tesla driver who runs you off the road may be more pint sized than usual.

And if you can’t afford a railroad ticket, just build your own one-seat pedal-powered train.

 

Morning Links: LA chosen Vision Zero Focus City, another Glendale cyclist threatened, and a special bike offer

Los Angeles has been selected as one of ten Focus Cities to lead the effort to eliminate traffic fatalities.

According to the Vision Zero Network,

Cities across the nation face similar challenges in ensuring safe mobility for all. The new Vision Zero Focus Cities program creates a collaborative network of early-adopter Vision Zero cities to build a common vision, and to develop and share winning strategies toward eliminating traffic fatalities and severe injuries.

Recognizing the importance of a stepped-up, multi-departmental, collaborative approach to advance Vision Zero, participants in the Focus Cities program will include representatives of each city’s Mayor’s Office, Transportation Department, Police Department, and Public Health Department. In addition, a concurrent track for collaboration will bring together Vision Zero community advocates from each of the Focus Cities.

Let’s hope this means a real commitment to Vision Zero here in Los Angeles, rather than allowing councilmembers to put riders at risk by arbitrarily carving streets out of the Mobility plan.

If Vision Zero is to work, it has to be the policy for all of LA, in every neighborhood and on every street.

Period.

………

Just days after video surfaced showing cyclists assaulted by a driver on a Glendale street, a Glendale teenager was cited for apparently threatening a bicyclist with a 10-inch knife from a passing van, after his mother had followed the rider honking her horn at him.

Why that didn’t merit the arrest of both the boy and his mother is beyond me.

Glendale police clearly need to do something to tame their streets before someone gets hurt. Or worse.

Meanwhile, LAist says the video shows that neither of the two Glendale cyclists who were assaulted by that brake-checking driver were remotely close to hitting the car. And they urge everyone to drive safely.

………

Maybe you’ve noticed.

The past few months, my curiosity has been piqued by a new bicycle from Fortified Bicycle, which promises to be virtually theft proof and indestructible, and built to survive the rough roads of an urban environment.

I’ve even linked to their Kickstarter a few times, both here and on my Twitter account.

Evidently, they noticed, because they contacted me yesterday with a special offer for the readers of BikinginLA.

I’ll let them explain.

Fortified 1THE ULTIMATE URBAN BIKE

Invincible is a sleek, bulletproof urban bike that is literally guaranteed against theft. Plus, Fortified Bicycle (the creators behind this project) have offered a special deal.

What makes Invincible a truly compelling urban bike? For one, every single component was selected for standing up to a rough urban environment. Parts that are commonly vulnerable to theft—lights, wheels, seat, handlebars—are secured with bolts that feature a proprietary drive geometry that opportunistic bike thieves will not be able to operate. But the biggest innovation here is their new cycle registration and theft protection service, Fortified Protect. Not only will Fortified send you a new bike if yours is stolen, they’ll also try and hunt down your stolen bike on third party seller marketplaces like eBay and Craigslist. That’s just cray.

The folks from Fortified are cutting Everyday Messenger backers a special deal. If you pre-order Invincible on their current Kickstarter project, they’ll add a free Invincible Rear Bike Rack ($45 value) to your rewards.

How to redeem this offer:

  1. Back Invincible on Kickstarter. Choose a reward level of at least $399 or more.
  2. Send a direct message on Kickstarter to Fortified Bicycle (the Invincible creators). Include the code “BIKINGINLALOVE” in that message. They’ll take care of things from there.

Fortified 2

Sounds like a good offer to me. But hurry if you’re interested, because there’s just six days to go before their Kickstarter ends.

And no, just to be clear, I don’t have any relationship with the makers of this bike, financial or otherwise.

………

Women, here’s your chance to try out for a pro cycling team. Without ever having to get on a bike.

……..

Local

The LA Times says the plan to relieve traffic congestion in Griffith Park is a good idea, but doesn’t go far enough; the paper calls for improved transit and protected bike lanes leading to the park.

KCET talks with Flying Pigeon owner, Bike Oven founder and all-around good guy Josef Bray-Ali.

Dallas Mavericks teammates JaVale McGee and J.A. Barea are one, make that two of us, as they take a tandem ride along the beachfront bike path near the Santa Monica pier.

LA’s own Phil Gaimon says barring small Pro Continental cycling teams from WorldTour races might reduce injuries, but it would unfairly limit opportunities for riders.

 

State

Police have a person of interest in custody, but not yet charged, in the murder of bike rider Sidney Siemensma on an Irvine bike path earlier this month; they say this was not a random attack.

Newport Beach says not so fast about that legal settlement we mentioned yesterday requiring them to work towards fixing a deadly intersection on PCH.

A senior planner for Alta Planning + Design describes their efforts in orchestrating a pedestrian and bicycle safety campaign. Clearly, they still have some work to do.

Local bike shop owners and their supporters will ride to protest San Diego’s DecoBike bikeshare program, arguing that it’s hurting their bottom line.

Apparently, bicyclists are being banned from a Santa Rosa pathway because of a typo; Portland bike riders have a similar problem, but for a different reason.

St. Helena proposes removing on-street parking in favor of a bike lane, while the owner of a local retirement community says that’s a bad idea, preferring parked cars to moving bikes.

Platinum-level bike friendly city Davis is aiming to be the first American city to reach Diamond status. After that, the next level would be Unobtainium.

Evidently, if you want to steal a bike, feel free to do it in front of UC Davis students, but don’t try to make your getaway in front of the sheriff.

 

National

Fifty percent of teens admit crossing a street while distracted. And the other half probably lied about it.

A Portland workshop is helping women overcome their fear of bicycling by teaching them how to fall. Which follows this sage advice from a few decades back.

A 77-year old Dallas truck driver is charged with driving under the influence after hitting a nine-year old child riding his bike around a mobile home park; fortunately, the boy is now in stable condition.

A bike riding Missouri bank robber gets nearly five years after stealing $14,000 to support his heroin addiction. He was caught trying to walk away after ditching the bike; if he’d kept riding, he might still be a free man, albeit with a monkey on his back.

A bill in the Tennessee legislature to encourage teaching students the right way to wear a bike helmet somehow became a bill to ban school districts from collecting teachers dues; thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

A fascinating set of graphs paint a picture of usage for New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare system. Including the deeper the snow depth, the less bikes are rented.

Speaking of which, a New York bike messenger discusses what he learned riding during the recent blizzard.

Once again authorities choose safety for motorists over safety for cyclists on a popular riding route by installing rumble strips, this time in Florida.

 

International

A Montreal memorial uses white shoes as the equivalent of a ghost bike for a fallen pedestrian.

Mother Jones says the jury is still out on that British study saying wearing a bike helmet makes you take more chances.

Scot authorities vow to get tough on illegal dumping, aka fly tipping, after a dog is maimed by a rusting bike left along a busy pathway. The more I do this, the more I learn English, as in the in the county, as opposed to what passes for it here.

Self-governing British dependency Isle of Man proposes legislation protecting cyclists, including a safe passing law and some form of presumed liability.

A Scottish newspaper looks at the man they credit with inventing the bicycle. Actually, it’s a little more complicated than that.

Spanish cyclist Alberto Gallego gets suspended for steroid use, just three days after joining his new team.

A Kiwi mountain biker plans to compete in a seven day, 310 mile race, a year after a reaction to a bee sting left him legally blind.

 

Finally…

Yes, the correct place to put a sign promoting a meeting to discuss cycle tracks is directly in the bike lane. Probably not the best idea to get loaded and throw a kid’s bike through the rear window of a cop car. Although yelling “boom” is a nice touch.

And most of us would have a hard enough time keeping our bike upright while working a Rubic’s cube, let alone solving 111 of them in two hours.

 

Morning Links: Bad news isn’t the problem, a Breeze-y day in SaMo, and bikes aren’t a priority in Beverly Hills

No.

Writing for Bicycling Retailer, Rick Vosper discusses what he says is a nationwide decline in bicycle sales, and places the blame in an unexpected place.

Press coverage of bicycling fatalities, which he says has driven down the rate of bicycling in this country by scaring people off their bikes.

Even though his own stats show bike sales increased 13% from 2000 to 2012.

His response is that, taking inflation into account, retail sales at bike shops actually dropped 9% over that same period when measured in constant dollars.

However, that fails to consider a little thing called the Internet, which became the go-to place for many shoppers over the same period. Just ask local book stores what effect online sales had on their business.

If you can find one.

It also fails to account for the Internet’s role in facilitating used bike sales, which have boomed over the same period.

And sales have been affected by the drop in prices for many items, as improved manufacturing techniques and overseas manufacturing have driven down the price of everything from carbon frames to high-powered bike lights, even as high-end bike prices have skyrocketed.

He goes on to argue that the perceived drop in sales is driven by a 37% decline in the number of bike riders in the US from 2000 to 2014, as 7.5 million Americans have stopped riding their bikes.

In fact, according to Vosper, just 11% of people in this country rode bikes in 2014, down from 15% in 2000, and 21% in 1995.

Except no one else seems to believe that.

In fact, by every appearance, ridership is booming in this country. And not just anecdotally.

The Statistica website traces a rise in bicycling from 47.16 million people who had ridden a bike in the previous 12 months in 2008, to 67.33 million in 2014, before dropping slightly to 66.72 this past spring.

Meanwhile, the 2012 National Survey of Pedestrian and Bicyclist Attitudes and Behaviors reported that 18% of Americans over the age of 16 rode a bike at least once that summer.

People for Bikes cites even higher numbers from a benchmarking survey taken last fall.

According to their study, over one-third of all Americans over the age of three rode a bike at least once in the previous year. That’s 100 million people.

Hardly a decline by any measure. So whatever forces may be limiting bike shop sales, it’s not due to a drop in ridership.

However, even if the numbers don’t support his conclusions, he still raises a point worth discussing.

When I started writing about bicycling fatalities in 2010, it was because no one else was doing it.

Too many times, the loss of a rider’s life wouldn’t merit more than a few lines in the local press, if that. And too many times, the victim was blamed when the circumstances pointed to a different conclusion.

So I set out to shine a light on these tragedies in order to memorialize the victim, shame the press into doing a better job, and hopefully force our governmental leaders to do something to stop the carnage on our roads.

It can be argued that those last two goals have been met, at least in part.

The press is finally paying attention. Maybe too much attention, by Vosper’s account. Most, though not all, fatal bicycling collisions are now reported in the press, though there’s still not enough focus on the person who was killed in the crash.

And with the commitment to Vision Zero currently spreading across the country — including right here in Los Angeles — our leaders are finally committing to ending the deaths, not just of people on bikes, but everyone who travels our roads.

So maybe we don’t have to shine that light anymore. Or at least, not as brightly.

I know these stories are hard to read. Trust me, they’re even harder to write.

It’s worth thinking about, and a discussion worth having as we move forward.

………

The Breeze finally blew into Santa Monica today, as the city’s new bikeshare system officially opened; Streetsblog offers some great pictures of the grand opening.

However, the LA Times notes that the system may not work seamlessly with Metro’s coming system, while Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says that doesn’t really matter.

And hopefully, users won’t ride them down a flight of stairs.

………

Just incredible.

Better Bike’s Mark Elliot explains that after four years of failed promises, Beverly Hills has finally admitted that updating the Biking Black Hole’s nearly 40-year old bike plan just isn’t a priority.

Then again, it never has been, since none of it was never implemented.

It will be interesting to see what happens when scores of foreign tourists take to the city’s bike-unfriendly and largely infrastructure-less streets when the Santa Monica bikeshare system expands to the city.

It may be a good thing it’s just a straight shot down the road from Cedars Sinai.

………

You may need to rethink your riding plans for the weekend. Both Glendora Mountain Road and Glendora Ridge Road in the Angeles National Forest will be closed all weekend due to high winds.

………

Local

Nice gesture from the East Side Riders new ESR Bike and Skate Shop, as they replaced the bike stolen from an 11-year old boy by a man who pushed him off the bike he’d just won in a raffle.

Good to see the LACBC’s blog make a comeback, with a detailed explanation of LA’s new Mobility Plan 2035 and what you can do to support it. Meanwhile, UCLA’s Daily Bruin takes an in-depth look at the current state of the plan. Although I’d expect better from former LA County Commissioner Zev Yaroslavsky, who says the plan was “cooked up in an ivory tower” and rushed through the political process; evidently, an over five-year public process wasn’t good enough for him.

KPCC looks at the new Go Human campaign that puts a human face on traffic safety.

Bicycle Retailer continues their tour of LA-area bike shops.

Santa Monica parents are pushing for crossing guards at dangerous intersections to protect children walking and biking to school.

 

State

A San Diego captain offers advice on how to prevent bike theft for the marina crowd.

A new Palo Alto bike and walking trail would form the spine of a Bay to Ridge Trail running through the Stanford campus.

Here’s your chance to get involved if you live in San Francisco, San Mateo or Santa Clara counties, as Caltrain is looking for bicyclist representatives for their advisory committee.

San Francisco messenger bag maker Timbuk2 offers a new line of bike bags for women.

Natomas cyclists now have a shiny new bike fix-it station.

Advice on how to safely share the road and pathways from the active transportation coordinator in Davis.

 

National

Amtrak expands bike service to the New York to New Orleans Crescent Line this week, even if it does bypass bike-friendly Anniston AL.

A Seattle-area paper argues that shifting to bikes would be a big benefit to the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and slowing climate change; a new study shows a shift to transportation cycling could save cities $25 trillion — that’s trillion, with a T — while reducing CO2 emissions 10% by 2050.

Kentucky senator and presidential candidate Rand Paul may enjoy riding his bike, but thinks federal funding for bike lanes belongs in the same category as turtle tunnels and squirrel sanctuaries. But at least he’s skilled at alliteration.

Maybe we’re making progress, as New Yorkers don’t complain about a proposal to remove a traffic lane and parking spaces to make room for a protected bike lane.

The Washington Post looks at why bike lanes have become heated symbols of gentrification, in the wake of a dispute over a planned bike lane in front of an African American church; leaders of the church have claimed it would violate their freedom of religion by removing parking. Thanks to Allyson Vought for the heads-up.

 

International

A British man who stabbed a bike rider to death in a random attack has been sentenced to an indefinite term in a psychiatric hospital for treatment of schizophrenia.

London’s Telegraph offers 11 rules for commuting by bike. It may be a sponsored post, but the first 10 tips aren’t bad.

An English driver has pled guilty to killing a cyclist during a road rage dispute.

Someone stole a Brit triathlete’s $17,000 Trek.

A Philippine professor says the way to reduce congestion in the country is to get people out of their cars and onto bikes and feet.

A Singapore taxi driver gets nine months, and a 10-year ban from driving, for the DUI death of a bike rider after falling asleep, crashing into a parked car, then backing into the cyclist.

 

Finally…

Presenting the perfect bike lock for people who are all thumbs. The real winner of a British cycling sportive will be whoever figures out how to hold two versions of the same race at the same time in the same place.

And world road champ Peter Sagan got married in Slovakia over the weekend in a ceremony that involved a top hat, tight rope and a chainsaw.

 

Weekend Links: Making a difference 50 years after Watts, and a SoCal dozen of America’s best bike shops

Fifty years after the Watts Riots, KCET looks at people and organizations working to re-imagine a part of the city that usually gets ignored unless something bad makes the news.

Among the groups they profile are the Eastside Riders Bike Club, using bikes to make a difference in South LA.

“We will educate our community and hope to bring a sense of pride. We hope to increase ridership and educate all safety components when it comes to walking, cycling and driving. We must all live together, work together and play together, ” says Jones.

The group is planning to open the Eastside Riders Bike & Skate Shop on September 5, 2015, at Central Avenue and 114th Street.

………

The National Bicycle Dealers Association listed the best bike shops in America for 2015, and Southern California was well represented.

The list includes four in the Los Angeles area, three in Orange County, four in San Diego County and one in Redlands. Interestingly, none of the LA area shops are on the LA Weekly’s nominees for the city’s best bike shops.

  • Bike Attack, Santa Monica
  • Pasadena Cyclery, Pasadena
  • Bicycle John’s, Santa Clarita
  • Topanga Creek Bicycles, Topanga
  • Rock N’ Road Cyclery, Mission Viejo
  • A Road Bike 4U, Irvine
  • Jax Bicycle Center, Irvine
  • Nytro Multisport, Encinitas
  • Revolution Bike Shop, Solano Beach
  • Bicycle Warehouse, San Diego
  • Black Mountain Bicycles, San Diego
  • Cyclery USA, Redlands

Congratulations to all. And next time you’re in one of these shops, remind them they need an ad on here.

………

You still have time to learn how to ride a bike safely this weekend.

Bike SGV’s Dorothy Wong is teaching classes in Pasadena and East LA today, with additional classes available through Metro and the LACBC throughout the county through the end of September.

………

Rohan Dennis added to his lead in the USA Pro Challenge by winning the time trial. Two-time Olympic gold medalist Kristin Armstrong won the women’s race; the 42-year old Armstrong has retired twice before coming back to beat riders half her age.

Today’s sand-covered beach time trial won’t count for individual standings in the Vuelta, following complaints from riders, while a record number of Americans will hit the starting line in Spain.

And Cycling Weekly looks at the top father and son combinations in bike racing. Or mother and daughter, as the case may be.

………

Local

New bike rider Ryan Seacrest talks with his bro Eric Garcetti about riding a bike in the City of Angels and LA’s new Mobility Plan; Bike Style LA posted the five-and-a-half minute segment online. Someone should tell Seacrest if he’s going to ride in LA, he needs to read BikinginLA. Right?

A Los Feliz neighborhood councilmember explains why LA’s nearly 100 NCs should support the Mobility Plan.

The LA Times posts responses to the recent OpEd from a Santa Monica businessman complaining about the Mobility Plan.

Streetsblog’s Damien Newton interviews Assemblymember Richard Bloom about transportation issues coming up in the legislature.

West Hollywood will be getting a 20-station bikeshare system next spring, part of the same system that just opened in Santa Monica, and which will extend to UCLA, Long Beach and inexplicably, bike-unfriendly Beverly Hills. Meanwhile, the local paper says Santa Monica’s bikeshare makes traveling around town a Breeze, pun apparently intended.

CicLAvia explains their outreach process for the upcoming return to the Heart of LA on October 18th.

 

State

Smart. San Clemente plans two-way bike path separated from El Camino Real by a median of decorative rock and landscaping, along with painted bike lanes on the roadway for faster riders.

Now that’s more like it. Santa Rosa police ticket 30 drivers for violating the right-of-way of cyclists and pedestrians. Nice to see a department focusing on operators of the more dangerous vehicle for a change.

Menlo Park debates adding bike lanes or more travel lanes to a major transit corridor through the city; the local fire chief says bike lanes will slow response times.

Auburn brags about besting bike-friendly Davis in bike miles per capita.

SF Gate profiles the Oakland cyclist who set a so-far unofficial record for most vertical feet climbed in 48 hours.

A Bay Area TV station catches Redwood City bicyclists behaving badly by running stop signs and riding on the sidewalk. Of course, we all know what would have happened if they’d turned the camera onto motorists, instead.

 

National

A great new animated video clearly illustrates how road diets work.

Bicycling explains how a quick-release works, and why you may be doing it wrong.

Last June, a Denver man handed his bikeshare bike over to a cop chasing a suspect down a bike path; yesterday, the police returned the favor by giving him a new bike.

A dangerous Minnesota street that took down a reporter will get a complete streets makeover. In 15 or 30 years.

An Ohio man is sentenced to four years for killing a cyclist while under the influence; he was somehow driving with a life-threatening alcohol level four-and-a-half times the legal limit. And had to go home to change clothes before coming back to get arrested.

The Hartford CT paper calls for more road diets, after plans are announced for the state’s first one on a deadly stretch of roadway.

A Brooklyn writer says the arrival of bikeshare isn’t synonymous with gentrification.

No bias here. A salmon cyclist was killed when he allegedly struck the side mirror of a U-Haul truck that was stopped at a stop sign in Queens, NY. He must have been hauling ass to suffer “severe trauma about the body” by hitting a stationary object like that.

 

International

The CBC talks with the director of Bikes vs Cars, a documentary examining the conflict on streets around the world, including right here in LA.

Wired offers a fascinating look at how the McLaren Technology Group applies the technology behind Formula 1 racing to various industries, including their partnership with Specialized.

A 76-year old Brit cyclist has been racing bikes since 1976.

The Guardian looks at five innovative ways to get people on their bikes in the UK. I vote for the cake ride, myself.

A British driver fled the scene after knocking a bike-riding reverend out cold. But at least he stopped long enough to move the victim’s bike out of the road before driving off, right?

There have been a lot of stories about people riding bikes, accidently or otherwise, on major freeways lately; a South African rider paid for it with his life when he was hit by a motorcycle.

 

Finally…

Caught on video: Take a stomach-churning two-minute ride down an abandoned Sarajevo bobsled track. That’s one way to get into the classic bike business; just keep buying bikes for parts until your wife insists you sell them.

And the LA Weekly says if New York’s mayor doesn’t want topless, body painted women besmirching Times Square’s pedestrian plazas, just send ‘em here.

Morning Links: Bikeshare finally besmirches Santa Monica, and the disappearing American bike shop

Bikeshare is finally here.

No, really.

After years of promises, Santa Monica has officially won the race for Los Angeles County’s first bikeshare program, with seven test hubs hitting the street as a pilot program for the Breeze bikeshare system that will hopefully turn into a gale by the end of the year.

And unlike some city’s we could mention, SaMo actually put a full bike network in place to protect riders before planning to throw bike renters to the traffic wolves.

Meanwhile, LA’s long-promised bikeshare system could finally make an appearance next year, just in time to take riders to see LA’s long-promised pro football team make its — or their — debut at the Coliseum.

And yes, it really is starting to feel like bikeshare is popping up everywhere, much to the chagrin of some who dread the besmirching of their fair cities, to cite a classic.

No one appears to have risen up in opposition to bikeshare in Los Angeles yet.

But there’s still plenty of time.

………

Red Kite Prayer explains why 38% of American bike shops have gone out of business in the last 15 years, despite the recent bike boom.

Meanwhile, a new bike maker has an interesting idea to help change that by charging more to buy direct than to buy the same bike from your local bike shop. They also promise to donate all their profits to bike advocacy programs.

………

Good thing the doping era is over. An Italian rider for Team Katusha has been provisionally suspended for using EPO back in 2012. Don’t you love how cycling teams are always shocked! shocked! to discover one of their riders is cheating?

………

Local

The Times’ Sandy Banks says that it’s up to us to hold city officials accountable for living up to the lofty promises of the Mobility Plan and Vision Zero.

The LA Explorers Club hosts their annual bike ride from the Garden of Eden to Devil’s Gate this Sunday, led by guest host Tom Carroll of the Tom Explores LA web series. The ride starts with New Belgium beers and ends with a stop at a brew pub, so this might be a good time to brush up on how alcohol affects your ride.

Nice interview with Wolfpack Hustle’s Don Ward, aka LA’s legendary Roadblock.

Metro wants to know your top priorities for improving walking and bicycling to train stations, bus stops and along regional bikeways or shared-use paths.

CicLAvia offers a photographic wrap-up of the recent Culver City to Venice event, where a good time was had by all.

 

State

Not surprisingly, a Camp Pendleton Navy man has pled not guilty in the hit-and-run death of cyclist Philip White.

San Diego’s Bike the Bay rolls through five bay-adjacent cities and across the Coronado Bay Bridge this Sunday.

Riverside considers replacing four-way stops with traffic circles, as well as building berms that will allow bike riders to bypass stop signs.

So much for the myth of scofflaw cyclists, as San Bernardino police write 95 tickets during a crackdown on bike and pedestrian safety, with just seven going to the people on two wheels, and 49 to those on two feet.

Palm Springs police go undercover to bust three thieves with a bait bike.

A Santa Barbara writer offers advice on essential tools for bike riders. I concur — especially about the cell phone, which can be a life saver in an emergency.

San Francisco unveils secure bike parking at the Civic Center BART station; users pay $5 for an access card and user verification, then just three cents an hour to park their bike. Can we pretty please get that down here? Please?

A Lodi bike summit aims to make the city a destination for bike tourism.

 

National

Biking to work is growing fastest among the richest Americans. Perhaps because the poorest have already been doing it.

Bicycling offers advice on how to take better pictures of your bike.

Portland distinguishes a bikeway from a sidewalk by painting the former green.

Santa Fe is planning a $3.8 million tunnel to allow cyclists and pedestrians to pass under a six-lane highway.

An Iowa driver had a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit when he killed a cyclist during a Sunday morning ride. So instead of cracking down on drunk drivers, the city naturally goes after unpermitted group rides.

A Minnesota driver faces up to 10 years for allegedly killing a bike-riding mom while texting.

At least they take drunk driving seriously in Illinois. A driver from that state faces up to 14 years in prison after pleading guilty to killing a cyclist while driving with a BAC 2.5 times the legal limit.

A full year after a New York bike rider was seriously injured in a hit-and-run, the NYPD still hasn’t spoken with the owner of the vehicle — and left it to the victim to track him down. Nice to know the police really don’t give a damn there.

 

International

This is why you never lock your bicycle to a street sign, as a Canadian rider returns to find thieves had unbolted the sign post to get his bike.

A British actress had to wait two hours for an ambulance after she was impaled on her own handlebars after a collision with another rider.

Floating bus stops designed to protect London bike riders could endanger blind and partially sighted people, according to one writer.

A London mayoral candidate insists riding a bike in the city is taking your life into your own hands, saying he doesn’t ride because he doesn’t want to leave his children without a father. No point in being overly dramatic or anything.

A writer for the UK’s Guardian explains why Manchester is a rubbish city for cycling.

A British cyclist saves the lives of several other people when his organs were donated, after he died from an apparent solo fall. I’ve signed my donor card just in case; if the worst ever happens, I want some good to come from it.

An Irish soccer player faces charges of drunk driving and hit-and-run after crashing into a bike rider, followed by driving into a gas pump.

Seriously? A test of the road race course for next year’s Rio Olympics is deemed a success, despite being rerouted for a protest and the mugging of photographers covering it. But other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, the play was a huge success.

Singapore has plans to become Asia’s first bicycling city, with plans to add over 430 miles of bikeways, including shaded paths to compensate for the city’s hot temperatures.

 

Finally…

Shape offer 30 reasons why bicycles are better than boyfriends. When is a three-month suspension for punching a fellow member of your national cycling team not a suspension? When there are no races scheduled to compete in.

And repeat after me: When you’re riding with a gun and a small amount of drugs on your bike, don’t ride salmon, already.

 

Guest Post: Beeline Bikes Expands Fleet of Mobile Bike Shops to SoCal, Offering a New Path for Mechanics.

Recently, I heard from Peter Small of Beeline Bikes about their new mobile bike repair service coming to SoCal, offering franchise opportunities for local bike mechanics.

It seemed like an interesting idea, so I offered Small the opportunity to write a guest post for this site.

……..

Beeline Bikes’ Mobile Bike Shop model enables mechanics to own their own business, deliver expert service, and do what they love.



A few years ago, Beeline Bikes Co-Founder Pete Buhl found it nearly impossible to get his bike serviced after visiting a shop that only serviced bikes they sold…another that refused to work on his brand…and two other shops had wait times of two to three weeks. It was at that moment he recognized a need that had yet to be served and so he built a business model focused on empowering mechanics, customer service, and enabling more people to ride bikes.

ExteriorSan Carlos, California-based Beeline Bikes thus began in 2013 and the company has been growing ever since. After servicing thousands of customers at their homes and 100+ corporate locations in the San Francisco Bay Area, Beeline recently announced plans to franchise nationwide.

Beeline’s approach satisfies a customer’s need for convenience. Customers can visit beelinebikes.com, see real-time availability, and quickly schedule an appointment at the location of their choice – work or home. A shop on wheels then arrives equipped with the tools and parts to perform the service, along with a full complement of accessories. And the scheduling algorithm in place ensures mechanics arrive to each appointment on time.

InteriorAs for mechanics, the technology platform plays an important role too. Appointment management, customer communication, bike history, and routing are all accessible from mobile phones or Wi-Fi enabled laptops as they travel onboard the Mobile Bike Shop. Beyond that, Beeline has built an integrated supply chain with 80+ distributors and brands to ensure reliable component and accessory availability.

Beeline Bikes is a departure from the traditional bike shop and places mechanics central to the business. It’s exciting to see mechanics develop an ongoing relationship with customers, and benefit from their knowledge and expertise. This is an opportunity for mechanics to build a long career in the bike industry.

Beeline has seen a strong response to its franchise expansion plans from all over the country and will initially focus on West Coast markets, including Los Angeles.

To learn more visit https://beelinebikes.com/franchise or email franchise@beelinebikes.com.

 

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