Tag Archive for bicycling

A double dose of Morning Links for your entertainment and edification.

There’s one advantage to breaking news getting in the way of Monday’s Morning Links. It means you get a double dose to help distract you from more meaningful pursuits on Tuesday.

To wit…

 

Local

Yet another successful CicLAvia goes down in the books; in less than four years it has become a tradition for some.

LAist learned 10 things from Sunday’s CicLAvia, while Streetsblog readers offer their thoughts.

Open Streets advocates from around the country look to CicLAvia for lessons learned.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton looks at the new bicycle rumble strips on the LA River bike path.

UCLA offers 100 free show tickets for people who arrive on bike.

Tree experts from around the country take a 100 mile Pasadena bike tour.

Glendale police ticket over 50 drivers in a crackdown on handheld cell phones and texting while driving. Who do we write to thank them?

 

State

Leisure World residents confront a samurai sword-wielding bike rider.

Oceanside riders get a new, roughly one-third mile separated bike path. Call it a down payment on the planned 40+ mile route.

A 72-year old woman faces charges after seriously injuring a Rancho Bernardo bike rider in a drunken hit-and-run.

Redlands complete a successful 30th Bicycle Classic, while inspiring the next generation of riders. And maybe the one after that.

I see reports like this everyday. But seriously, who would run a stop sign when there’s a car right in front of you, like this woman in Blythe allegedly did?

An 18-year old bike rider suffers major injuries in a Santa Maria hit-and-run; the victim was in a crosswalk when the light turned green in the opposite direction.

Careless drivers and overly aggressive cyclists make a bad combination on Bay Area back roads.

A Santa Rosa cyclist dies in police custody after struggling with officers following a brief chase. Just a coincidence, I’m sure.

 

National

Looks like action cam maker Contour is back from the dead.

Apparently assuming the highway death count isn’t high enough, Apple is working on better ways to distract drivers.

Tucson cyclists want better road safety; they had their version of a ciclovia on Sunday, too.

Apparently, bike paths pose a risk to rural Wyoming residents.

Missouri Republican declares war on bicycle funding in the state budget.

Police attempt to encourage alternative transportation by cracking down on bicycling University of Illinois students as soon as the weather warms up. Yeah, that’ll get more people on bikes.

The rich get richer as Chicago gets another 15 miles of buffered bike lanes, and five miles of protected bike lanes.

Bike riding is getting safer in Ohio as bikes and cars are clashing less.

A Georgia writer correctly notes that children on bikes can’t be expected to ride responsibly, and it’s up to motorists to drive as if it’s their kids sharing the roads with them.

 

International

New British Brainy Bike Lights promise to make motorists recognize bikes a split second sooner.

Fabian Cancellara wins a third Tour of Flanders, while a fan is critically injured in a collision with a rider. Meanwhile, cycling scion Taylor Phinney continues to impress.

A Mumbai cyclist struggles to raise funds to compete in this year’s RAAM. Surely some American firm has saved enough by outsourcing their customer service and/or tech departments overseas to throw a few rupees his way.

A New Zealand panel will explore how to keep cyclists safer. Like not crashing into them, maybe?

 

Finally…

Repeat after me. When you’re carrying multiple baggies of meth, marijuana and assorted drug paraphernalia — and a key to a drug-filled locker — on your bike, don’t ride salmon. Seriously.

And it looks like the Militant Angeleno punked me us with his guide to the Wilshire CicLAvia. I really, really wanted to believe the one about the car cult.

Thanks to John Hall for his generous donation to help support this website and bring you LA’s best bike news everyday. If you’d like to help, you can contribute to BikinginLA through PayPal.

A brief look at Sunday’s successful, stress-free Wilshire CicLAvia

Let’s take a quick photographic tour of a few outstanding moments from Sunday’s CicLAvia on Wilshire Blvd.

Only in LA — Cyclists at the Fairfax hub get to ride the red carpet.

Only in LA — Cyclists at the Fairfax hub get to ride the red carpet.

Evidently, bikes really are good for business.

Evidently, bikes really are good for business.

A boy on a bike circles the moving memorial to Robert F. Kennedy in front of the former Ambassador Hotel.

A boy on a bike circles the moving memorial to Robert F. Kennedy in front of the former Ambassador Hotel.

A homeless man sleeping behind the memorial shows we still have a long way to go to live up to RFK's ideals.

A homeless man sleeping behind the memorial shows we still have a long way to go to live up to RFK’s ideals.

Long time LA residents might not recognize the new, pristine and junkie-free MacArthur park, where cakes no longer melt in the rain.

Long time LA residents might not recognize the new, pristine and junkie-free MacArthur park, where cakes no longer melt in the rain.

Just a small fraction of the crowd walking through the Dismount Zone at the DTLA hub.

Just a small fraction of the crowd walking through the Dismount Zone at the DTLA hub. And one guy riding anyway.

There were a lot of very cool ridden on the route. This classic Sting Ray reproduction was one of my favorites.

There were a lot of very cool ridden on the route. This classic Sting Ray reproduction was one of my favorites.

This was my first chance to ride the new Wilshire Blvd Bus — and bike — Only Lanes.

This was my first chance to ride the new Wilshire Blvd Bus — and bike — Only Lanes.

As promised, much of the architecture was beautiful. And too often unnoticed behind the wheel of a car.

As promised, much of the architecture was beautiful. And too often goes unnoticed from behind the wheel of a car.

 

This little guy was very winded after riding up a small hill. And deservedly very proud of what he'd accomplished.

This little guy was very winded after riding up a small hill. And deservedly very proud of what he’d accomplished.

Children and adults took advantage of the opportunity to add their artwork to this van.

Children and adults took advantage of the opportunity to add their artwork to this van.

One final reminder that bikes are good for business. And if restaurants and other business owners work for safe bike access. they'l be rewarded.

One final reminder that bikes are good for business. And if restaurants and other business owners work for safe bike access, they’l be rewarded.

……..

Just a few other notes.

Just like last year along the same route, this was one of the most relaxed of the eight CicLAvias I’ve attended.

This was also the first time I didn’t witness a single downed rider. That’s not to say no one was injured, but I saw a lot of very bored people in the First Aid booths.

There were a lot of very young children riding on training wheels and small bikes, which spoke volumes about how comfortable their parents felt in letting them ride. And sets the stage for a new generation of bike riders.

There were also more people walking than I’ve seen in years past. Maybe the message is finally getting out that CicLAvia is for everyone, regardless of how you choose to travel. As long as it’s without a motor.

Businesses that reached out to CicLAvia participants in some way were richly rewarded. Those that remained closed or ignored what was happening on the street in front of them were largely ignored in turn.

If bike riders had a safe way to get to those shops and restaurants, proprietors could enjoy a boost in business more than once a year.

Twelve miles an hour isn’t fast. Except when everyone else is doing eight. If you find yourself alone in weaving in and out of other bike traffic, you’re the problem. Note: In response to a comment from Chuck below, I am not suggesting any kind of speed limit for anyone. What I’m saying is that when the traffic around you slows down and bunches up, it is both rude and dangerous to try to force your way through at a higher speed. Slow down and wait until it is safe to pass, just like we expect drivers to do.

And if you find yourself bombing downhill in a dismount zone, or weaving uphill when everyone else observing the requirement to walk, you’re more than just the problem. You’re a danger to everyone else on the street — which is putting it mildly.

More still needs to be done to keep motor vehicles off the CicLAvia route. I saw many drivers pull up to the barricades and turn around after realizing the road was closed. I saw others try to inch their way past despite the walkers and riders in their way; evidently, the idea that a street could be closed to motor vehicle traffic is incomprehensible to some.

An online acquaintance set out looking for me in the massive crowd, and vice versa. Instead she met Conan O’Brian. I’d call that a significant trade-up.

Finally, after one of the most exceptionally pleasant CicLAvias yet, the October return to Downtown LA seems a very long way off, indeed.

 

Weekend Links: CicLAvia! CicLAvia! CicLAvia! And a bunch of other stuff

The view from the Downtown hub

The bike-filled view from the Downtown hub at last year’s Wilshire CicLAvia.

Do I really have to tell you CicLAvia is returning to LA this weekend?

I’m assuming that everyone within reasonable traveling distance of Los Angeles knows what CicLAvia is, and has probably been to at least one.

If not, what the hell are you waiting for?

In just three short years. CicLAvia has become the largest open streets event in the US, drawing far more than the official “over 100,000” estimate cited after each one — which was probably short by at least half for the Venice Blvd CicLAvia to the Sea. And providing Angelenos with a new way to experience the city and the streets that belong to them, not the cars that usually clog them.

The Wilshire route, which you can enjoy for free from 9 am to 4 pm this Sunday, opens up one of the city’s most iconic boulevards to people who usually grasp it only in glimpses from the hermetically sealed comfort of their cars, with events occurring all day from end to end.

It’s not a race. It’s not a bike tour. It’s not, in fact, limited to bikes, though that’s the easiest way to experience the full length from Fairfax on the Miracle Mile to the eastern terminus in Downtown LA.

It’s open to everyone, using any form of non-motorized transportation. And yes, exceptions are made for motorized wheelchairs and other necessary mobility devices.

You can experience as much or as little of the route as you want, any way you want, for however long you want. You can walk a few blocks, or hike the full way. Skate it. Scoot it. Or just pull up a chair and watch the city — your city — roll by.

Because that’s the primary takeaway most people seem to have after attending a CicLAvia. That this is our city, and our streets. And neither one belongs to the cars we’ve given them over to.

That, and it’s a helluva lot of fun.

However you do it.

……..

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers 12 tips for Sunday’s CicLAvia. I’d disagree on just one point — wear whatever the hell you want, whether that’s spandex or a taffeta tutu.

Downtown News lists nine things you’ll want to know before you join in on Sunday.

Even Zev shares the CicLAvia spirit.

Gizmodo lists CicLAvia first among nine top open streets festivals.

Feeder rides include routes from Santa Monica, UCLA and the Eastside.

Bicycle Fixation’s Rick Risemberg will be leading a free art tour of Miracle Mile galleries starting at 1 pm.

Choose from three organized walks. Or just, you know, walk.

You can meet Breaking Away’s Dennis Christopher, as well as the two-wheeled star of the movie that got me back on a bike, at the west hub near Fairfax Ave. If only bikes could sign autographs.

New Belgium Brewing is sponsoring a snapshot competition.

Los Angeles Magazine offers recommendations on where to eat and what to see, as well as a guide to churches, temples and Islamic Centers along the way.

And you’ll want to print out the Militant Angeleno’s iconic guide to the iconic boulevard to reference along the way.

……..

Local

Friends of fallen cyclist Andy Garcia offer a gut-wrenching remembrance of the night he was killed and two other riders seriously injured in a drunken hit-and-run. And question the plea deal that resulted in his killer serving just a fraction of the possible sentence. It’s a difficult read, but well worth it.

A cyclist offers five tips for drivers, saying our streets don’t have to be a battlefield.

Who knew LA already had a bike share program? The successful program at Occidental College could be turned into a full student service.

 

State

Streetsblog updates the status of transportation bills in Sacramento.

The husband of fallen Newport Beach cyclist Debra Deem files a claim against the city for failing to maintain the Coast Highway where she was killed; the city denies responsibility for that section of roadway, saying Caltrans should be liable.

New bike lanes are coming to Carlsbad.

After suffering a major concussion in her first spring classic, a women’s pro rider discovers it’s a long and slow way back; fortunately, she’s recovered enough to compete in this week’s Redlands Classic.

San Francisco’s bike share program could be extended to the East Bay.

 

National

Former DC and Chicago DOT head Gabe Klein looks at what makes a successful bike share program. Meanwhile, the US Senate considers a tax break for bike share.

Six new gadgets for your bike commute.

A Portland woman is arrested for intentionally running down a bike rider following a traffic dispute.

A 12-year old Oregon boy suffers a life-changing brain injury when the front wheel comes off his bike; a tragic reminder of the importance of proper maintenance, especially on low-end kids bikes that may be more prone to failure.

Wisconsin passes a watered-down vulnerable users law.

 

International

If someone on a bicycle or motorcycle can be called a biker, why shouldn’t someone in a car be called a carer? Especially one who kills an 87-year old man while driving drunk.

Cycling News remembers the forgotten founder of the Tour of Flanders.

It takes courage to race a bike. It takes real courage for women to race in Afghanistan.

Kiwi courts are accused of going easy on drivers who kill cyclists; the same argument could be made about just about any court, everywhere. An editorial from the same paper says more needs to be done to keep cyclists safe. Again, the same goes just about everywhere.

 

Finally…

Is an all-orange bike chained to a fence a clever marketing campaign, or a misguided rip-off of ghost bikes and in extremely poor taste? Personally, I’d seriously question if I’d want to do business with the company behind them.

And after a East Bay bike advocate tries switching bikes for cars in news stories, he starts a meme that quickly becomes the top trend on Twitter.

Calendar: More than just CicLAvia this weekend — Bike Film Festival, Liechty fundraiser, Basic Mtn Bike Skills

Bike Talk airs every Saturday at 10 am; listen to it live or download the podcast from KPFK.

Bike Long Beach hosts Bike Saturdays every weekend; ride your bike to participating local shops and business throughout the city to get special offers and discounts.

The City of Los Angeles will host a series of neighbor workshops to collect feedback on the Mobility Plan 2035, re:code LA and the Plan for a Healthy Los Angeles; the Mobility Plan especially will impact the future of bicycling in the city. Click here for addresses and other information (pdf).

  • South Valley, 9 am to noon on Saturday, April 5th
  • Harbor, 10 am to 1 pm on Saturday, April 12th

The 30th annual Redlands Bicycle Classic rolls from Wednesday, April 2nd to Sunday, April 6th offering some of the nation’s best amateur and professional bike racing.

The National Open Streets Summit is scheduled for Friday, April 4th through Sunday, April 6th at the Line Hotel, 3515 Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles.

The annual Bicycle Film Festival offers the perfect lead-up to CicLAvia, unspooling — do they still do that? — at the Aratani / Japan America Theatre, 244 S. San Pedro Street in Downtown LA on Friday and Saturday, April 4th and 5th.

Helen’s Cycles hosts a no-drop Men’s Group Ride for intermediate riders on Saturday, April 5th to be led by members of the Helen’s Cycles Men’s Race Team. Check-in for the ride is 7:45 am at the Santa Monica Helen’s, 2501 Broadway, rolling at 8 am.

Early risers can still make CORBA’s monthly mountain bike Free Basic Skills Clinic on Saturday, April 5th at the entrance to Malibu Creek State Park, 1925 Las Virgenes Rd in Calabasas. Signup begins at 8:30 am, with clinic from 9 am to 1 pm.

fundraiser will be held for fallen Orange County cyclist Matt Liechty this Saturday, April 5th. The event will take place at Perry’s Pizza, 2108 W. Oceanfront Blvd in Newport Beach, with donations accepted from 11 am to midnight. Donations can also be made online.

CicLAvia is finally here on Sunday, April 6th on iconic Wilshire Blvd, LA’s historic main street. The free event rolls and walks from Downtown to the Miracle Mile with expanded hours from 9 am to 4 pm.

Fans of the Amgen Tour of California can ride the same official Stage 8 course the pros will when the L’Etape du California rolls on Sunday, April 6th in Thousand Oaks. Entry is limited to the first 1,500 riders to register.

Alliance for Biking and Walking President/CEO Jeff Miller will speak on Building a Bike Friendly City at 6 pm this Monday, April 7th in Santa Ana, at the Garfield Community Center, 850 Brown Street.

A meeting will be held at Occidental College to discuss forming a bike-friendly business district in Northeast Los Angeles on Wednesday, April 9th from 6 to 8 pm in room 209 of Fowler Hall.

Also on Wednesday, April 9th, enjoy the confluence of bikes and beer with the rolling pub crawl Bikes, Beer and Bites sponsored by the Deschutes Brewery and benefitting the Friends of the Los Angeles River. Meet at the FoLAR Frog Town River Lot, 2825 Benedict St, between 4 and 5:15 pm, $15 tickets include three tokens for beer paired with small bites.

Angelenos Against Gridlock will host a free Fireside Chat on Transportation with Westside City Councilmember Mike Bonin on Friday, April 11th from 6:45 pm to 9 pm at the over-named The Moss Theater at New Roads School’s Capshaw-Spielberg Center at the Herb Alpert Educational Village, 3131 Olympic Blvd.

Saturday, April 12th, Helen’s Cycles sponsors the Eli Richbourg Memorial Ride to raise funds for Eli’s wife and two-year old daughter following his death from a brain aneurism last year. The ride starts at the Santa Monica Helen’s, 2501 Broadway at 8 am; suggested donation $25.

A memorial will be held for fallen cyclist and former Pasadena city council member Sid Tyler at 2 pm Saturday, April 12th at Pasadena’s All Saints Church, 132 N Euclid Ave, with a reception to follow a Pasadena City Hall.

The San Fernando Valley Bike Club offers a twice monthly Compagni Group Ride — Italian for companion — on the second and fourth Sunday of every month; the next ride takes place on Sunday, April 13th. Click here for details and other rides; lots of other great sounding rides on the list, too.

Walk ‘n Rollers teams up with  the LACBC to present the free 2014 South LA Kids Bike Festival on Sunday, April 13th from 11 am to 2 pm at the Foshay Learning Center, 3751 S. Harvard Blvd. The fun family event will focus on developing safe riding skills; a limited supply of bikes and helmets will be available to borrow.

Also on Sunday, April 13th, the authors of Where to Bike Los Angeles join with the LACBC for their monthly bike tour of the LA area. This month’s La Rubaix Ride will offer a not-so-hellish and cobblestone-free homage to the Paris – Roubaix classic. The 35 mile, intermediate level ride meets at 8:30 am at The Trails Cafe, 2333 Fern Dell Drive, rolling at 9.

The My Figueroa project is due to return to the City Council’s Planning and Land Use Management Committee on Tuesday, April 15th at 2:30 pm; 200 North Spring Street.

LADOT and City Planning are hosting a webinar (pdf) to discuss the second year implantation of the LA 201 bike plan, from 7 to 8 pm on Friday, April 17th.

The MOM Ridaz are volunteering to feed the homeless at the 3rd annual Sweet Home Sundae Bar sponsored by the Fred Jordan Missions and Rowe Cuisine on Saturday, April 19th from 10 am to 2 pm; two or possibly three feeder rides will lead to the event. If you’d like to volunteer, email info@rowecuisine.com with your name, e-mail and shirt size no later than April 1st 1. I can’t imagine a better cause.

The annual Taco Night sponsored by the Eastside Bike Club, Monrovia Cyclist and Stan’s Bike Shop takes place at 5 pm on Saturday, April 19th as a fund raiser for Tour de Cure. The event takes place at Stan’s Bike Shop, 800 Myrtle Avenue in Monrovia.

Mark your calendar for Saturday, April 26th, when the Pomona Police Department will host a Kid’s Bike Rodeo; details to follow.

The American Diabetes Association’s Tour de Cure Ship to Shore ride takes place on Sunday, April 27th at the Queen Mary, 1126 Queen’s Highway in Long Beach. Rides range from eight to 100 miles, with a $200 fundraising minimum.

On February 17th of last year, Damian Kevitt was hit by a minivan while riding his bike in Griffith Park. The driver attempted to flee the scene with Kevitt trapped under the vehicle, dragging him nearly 600 feet onto the 5 Freeway and leaving him for dead; the resulting injuries cost him a leg, and nearly took his life. On Sunday, April 27th, Kevitt is planning to finish the ride to raise funds for the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition and the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

Also on Sunday the 27th, Brewcyclers visits the new Bottle Logic Brewing in Anaheim; ride meets at 7:30 am at 1072 North Armando Street in Anaheim, rolling at 8 for a 47 mile round trip ride with just 950 feet of elevation gain.

The Ride 2 Recovery to benefit wounded vets returns to Southern California on Saturday, May 3rd in Thousand Oaks. The ride departs from the Lost Hills Sheriff Station, 27050 Agoura Hills Road, starting at 8 am; no cost for injured vets.

Wolfpack Hustle hosts the Shorline Crit in Long Beach from 2 pm to 10 pm on Saturday, May 3rd.

One of the highlights of the LA bike calendar used to be the annual Bike Expo at the Convention Center, which sadly died to to declining interest. Now Santa Monica is picking up the mantle with the free Santa Monica Bike Expo on Saturday and Sunday, May 3rd and 4th at the Santa Monica Pier.

The theme of the LACBC’s May Sunday Funday Ride is May the Forest Be With You, offering a delayed Earth Day celebration hosted by board member Kevin Hopps. The ride meets at LACBC headquarters in Downtown LA, 634 S. Spring Street at 9:30 am on Sunday, May 4th.

The fully funded, approved and shovel ready bike lanes on North Figueroa are finally scheduled for a public hearing with council member Gil Cedillo, who has been dragging his feet for reasons know only to him. The meeting is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, May 8th from 6 to 8 pm at Nightingale Middle School, 3311 North Figueroa Street.

Saturday, May 10th, marks the Grand Opening of the first protected bike lane in the San Gabriel Valley, on Rosemead Blvd between Las Tunas and Broadway in Temple City; ribbon cutting ceremony starts a 9 am, with a Community Festival from 10 am to 1 pm. CICLE, the Eastside Bike Club and Stan’s Bike Shop are leading a family-friendly community ride to the festival.

The Amgen Tour of California runs from Sunday, May 11th to Sunday, May 18th, starting in Sacramento. Three SoCal stages are planned, Friday May 16th, Santa Clarita to Mountain High; Saturday May 16th, Santa Clarita to Pasadena, and the final stage on Sunday the 18th in Thousand Oaks. There are also two women’s races scheduled, in Sacramento on May 11th and on the 12th in Folsom.

Bike Week 2014 is set to unfold the week of May 12th, with preview events on Saturday the 10th and Sunday the 11th.

  • May 10th: Get Ready and Fix Your Bike!
  • May 11th: Bicycling is for Everyone Celebration!
  • May 12th: Kick-off Bike Week LA
  • May 13th: Blessing of the Bicycles
  • May 14th: Guided Ride Day: Bike Lanes and More!
  • May 15th: Bike to Work Day
  • May 12th-18th: Bike Local Discounts

Mark your calendar for Glendale’s 2nd Annual Jewel City Fun & Fitness Ride on Sunday, May 18th, with rides ranging from seven to 45 miles.

The California Bicycle Coalition is hosting a Bike Advocacy Day to influence elected officials in Sacramento on Wednesday, May 21 in Sacramento.

Discover LA’s world famous street art on the Northeast Los Angeles Mural Ride on Saturday, May 24th. Meet at the Heritage Gold Line Station, 3545 Pasadena Ave at 9:30 am, rolling at 10.

The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee, the city’s only official voice for bicyclists, meets on the first Tuesday of every even-numbered month; the next meeting takes place at 7 pm on Tuesday, June 3rd at 6501 Fountain Ave. I’ll be celebrating the Corgi’s birthday that night.

LA’s most popular fundraising bike ride rolls on Sunday, June 22nd with the 14th edition of the LACBC’s Los Angeles River Ride. Ten rides of varying lengths, with starting points in Long Beach and Griffith Park, including two centuries, a 15-mile family ride and a free kid’s ride; discount prices available through May 27th.

Mark your calendar for the Peace Love & Family Ride for Crohn’s and Obesity in South LA on July 5th and 6th. Great cause; more details when they become available.

The year’s second CicLAvia takes place on Sunday, October 5th with a new variation on the classic Heart of LA route through Downtown LA, from Echo Park to East LA.

The first winter — or late fall, anyway — CicLAvia is also the first to roll through historic South LA on Sunday, December 7th, from the cultural center of the Southside in Leimert Park to the birthplace of West Coast Jazz on Central Avenue.

Find bike racing schedules and other cycling events at SoCal Cycling.

 

Morning Links: It’s bike video Friday, Fig4All finally gets a hearing, and meet the real star of Breaking Away

Major video action for a Friday.

First up is a truly bizarre video offering a 360 degree high speed overhead view of a bike ride, as well as a similar look at driving. Not surprising, the bike footage is far more fun.

Or maybe you’d prefer a pair of Aussie cyclists drafting a truck at 77 mph — although if they’re really going that fast, how fast are the cars passing them going?

And a little closer to home, a professional mountain biker gets some serious speed — and major air — in the Santa Monica mountains.

All of which serves as a reminder that the LA Bicycle Film Festival starts today and runs through Saturday. Just try not to munch your KIND bars loudly enough to disturb the other patrons.

……….

Local

LA Councilmember Gil Cedillo has finally scheduled a public meeting to discuss the long delayed, fully funded and shovel ready bike lanes on North Figueroa. Maybe now we’ll finally find out why he’s been dragging his feet on a project that was ready to go when he took office.

Move LA’s draft proposal for the proposed transportation sales tax ballot measure, which includes 4% for active transportation and 20% for highways. If you ask me, that should be the other way around.

Meet Breaking Away star Dennis Christopher, and perhaps more importantly, the Masi bike he rode in the movie at Sunday’s CicLAvia.

Wolfpack Hustle reports back on last weekend’s successful assault on the Red Hook Criterium.

Santa Monica Next remembers the heavy-handed, and mostly illegal, crackdown on Critical Mass in what was then a much more bike-unfriendly SaMo just a few short years ago.

If you want to ride like that guy in the Santa Monica Mountain video, here’s how you start. CORBA is hosting a free mountain bike basic skills clinic in Malibu Creek State Park this Saturday. Thanks to Stephen Messer for the heads-up.

 

State

Newport Beach police go ebike.

Visiting the Santa Barbara backcountry by bike.

Gritty girls take on the Aptos Mountain Bike Festival.

Just 90 days in jail and three years probation for a two-time Marin bike thief.

Repeat after me: If you’re already wanted on six outstanding warrants, put a damn light on your bike. And don’t fight with the Fresno cops who try to stop you.

 

National

America has been invaded by rebel handmade bike builders.

Elly Blue offers advice on how to start riding your bike.

If your city doesn’t have a protected bike lane yet, it’s being left behind. And no, we don’t, unless you count those easily driven over pylons in the 2nd Street tunnel.

When a cyclist crashes while raging at you, are you obligated to stop? Three out of four Oregon ethicists say yes.

Keep your eyes on Craigslist, as thieves strip a Seattle bike shop of 32 custom built bicycles worth $150,000. Chances are, they’ll try to unload them out of state.

A proposed Missouri transportation tax is set aside after lawmakers attempt to keep any of the money from being spent on bike paths, which is not the “proper role of government” according to one Republican legislator.

As usual, Boston’s Bikeyface nails it by showing how life would be if she really did own the road.

A fond welcome back to the blog world to our long-time Carolina correspondent Zeke, and congrats on the new dogs and new found ability to bounce.

It only took killing three people by backing over them in a church parking lot for a 79-year old Florida driver to lose her license for a whole year. I’m sure local residents can’t wait until she gets it back at 80.

 

International

London police have been found liable for injuries to a bike riding former reporter who was hit by a patrol car on an emergency call; the victim still needs 24-hour car four years after the collision.

The makers of that Swedish airbag bike helmet says safety standards for helmets are far too low. Especially since theirs exceeds them.

Ironman star Yvonne van Vlerken suffers a broken collarbone in a collision with a car while visiting her home in the Netherlands.

They just don’t get it. An Aussie driver makes a lane change on a curve sharp enough to hide the presence of a bike rider, yet it’s the cyclist’s fault for riding in the lane where she’s more visible.

Speaking of not getting it, an Australian paper insists someone is going to die when a new three-foot — or one meter — law goes into effect. Because it’s just impossible to wait until you can pass a bike safely, right? Meanwhile, a writer says the press Down Under has declared war on bicycling.

A more than one-a-week rate of bicycling injuries calls out the need for bike lanes in Christchurch NZ.

A Shanghai driver gets two years for killing a cyclist while driving without a license. That would be an unusually stiff sentence for a driver in the US, with or without a license.

 

Finally…

Maybe you’re wearing your helmet on the wrong end. A new medical study shows bike riders are at risk for genital and kidney injuries, with men at greater risk than women, and boys at 10 times the risk of men — mostly from landing on the top tube.

And yes, I could have been the poster boy for that one.

 

Morning Links: Not guilty pleas in OC meth hit-and-run, BFF KINDness, and fundraiser for OC’s Matt Liechty

We’ve got a lot of ground to cover today, so let’s not waste any time.

……..

Not surprisingly, 18-year old Sommer Gonzalez pled not guilty to all counts in the death of cyclist Joe Robinson on Orange County’s Santiago Canyon almost exactly two months earlier.

As the chart below shows, she entered a plea of not guilty to four felony and two misdemeanor violations of the criminal code, and denied two felony violations of the state vehicle code.

I’m told she’s been remanded into custody pending trial. Her next court appearance is scheduled for April 21st.

Sommer-Gonzalez-Charges-2

Thanks to Jeffrey Fylling and an anonymous source for the tip.

……..

A relative of fallen cyclist Matt Liechty sends word that a fundraiser will be held in his honor this Saturday. The event will take place at Perry’s Pizza, 2108 W. Oceanfront Blvd in Newport Beach, with donations accepted from 11 am to midnight.

Liechty was the victim of yet another February Orange County hit-and-run, as the former OC Sheriff and Probation Department employee was run down in a Huntington Beach bike lane by an alleged drunk driver who fled the scene, leaving one of his wheels behind.

……..

SAMSUNGSnack bar maker KIND has come up with a clever promotion for this weekend’s Bicycle Film Festival.

Due to a delivery issue and a busy schedule, I’m a little behind in sharing this, but you still have one more day — today — to share a little kindness with a friend.

#kindawesome
Spread kindness in Los Angeles. Send a flower and KIND bars to a friend via bike messenger. www.KINDsnacks.com/kinddeliveries 
 
#bffworld 
Bring your friends to the Bicycle Film Festival coming to LA – April 4-5th! www.bicyclefilmfestival.com/city/los-angeles/
 
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE BICYCLE FILM FESTIVAL:
Location: Aratani/Japan America Theatre (downtown)
Dates/Times: Friday, April 4th 7:30pm + 9:30pm; Saturday, April 5th 7pm + 9pm

The four unique screenings of narrative and cinematic films kick off with the premiere of HALF THE ROAD, BY Kathryn Bertine a highly anticipated feature about the highlights and challenges of women’s cycling, setting the tone for the following three programs of fun and poignant shorts illuminating the joys and perseverance riding inspires across cultures, ages and landscapes.

We also just added after parties for both nights, which will take place at Angel City Brewery just a few blocks away. (216 S. Alameda)

SAMSUNG

……..

A Santa Monica high school student has developed a handlebar mounted cell phone holder and speaker to give you access to all your aps, as well as music and hands-free calling. As of Wednesday, it was roughly $10,000 short of its Kickstarter goal with 10 days to go.

Personally, one of the many reasons I ride a bike is to get away from all the electronic demands on my attention, and experience the real world for awhile. And as far as I’m concerned, there are enough distracted motorists on the roads without adding distracted cyclists to the mix.

But you can learn more here.

……..

Local

KPCC says it’s never too late to learn how to ride a bike, thanks to CICLE’s adult Learn to Ride classes.

A guest writer for the Times Opinion page thanks LA drivers for safely sharing the road; your experience may vary.

Flying Pigeon asks for a little network elegance when it comes to LA bikeways, but despairs of the power council members have to stop it.

LAist reminds us that CicLAvia isn’t the only bike event this weekend, and that there’s more to life than bicycling. Meanwhile, LA Magazine offers advice on what to eat and see on Wilshire this Sunday.

 

State

Oceanside is about to open the next segment of a planned 44-mile bike trail from Oceanside to San Diego.

Less-than-bike-friendly CSU Sacramento considers on-campus bike lanes and enforcement of bike-free zones to improve campus safety.

A San Jose writer asks if racing culture has sucked all the fun out of riding a bike. That’s the great thing about bike riding, though; you can race or ride for recreation, exercise or transportation. Or all of the above, whatever works for you. And whether or not you pay any attention to other kinds of riders is entirely up to you.

An 18-year old Pleasanton man faces 2nd degree murder and felony reckless driving charges after losing control of his speeding car last June, and slamming into a couple bicycling in the opposite direction, killing the wife. He had previously invited his Twitter followers to join him on a “death ride;” meanwhile, his father faces a possible third strike for weapons and controlled substances that were found when conducted a search related to his son’s case.

 

National

In a truly bizarre case, a Missouri woman has pled guilty to hit-and-run in the death of a bike rider last year. She was reportedly fleeing from her ex-boyfriend at the time, who was chasing her in a stolen car while flashing a gun; he faces a second-degree murder charge for causing the death.

 

International

An English magistrate questions whether a law banning cyclists from riding drunk was intended to apply to bike riders; Parliament may have to make the final determination.

A UK man plans to ride the courses of the five European Spring Classics on a homemade Penny Farthing.

And in the last of today’s string of killer teenage drivers, an 18-year old British woman is accused of going crazy following a dispute at a party, then tracking down and killing her victim with her car as he rode his bike.

Evidently, the same three foot law that’s in use throughout the US becomes hopelessly impractical when converted to Australia’s metric system.

 

Finally…

It’s okay to carry a shovel on your bike, but don’t use it to threaten police and laundromat customers.

And if you’re riding drunk in Pennsylvania, put a damn light on your bike and don’t yell at passing patrol cars; bike lawyer Bob Mionske notes that his 15 day sentence is more than most drivers face for killing someone.

 

Morning Links: CicLAvia is coming, Calbike legislative agenda and the best of yesterday’s foolishness

Local

Last weekend’s successful tour of LA bike co-ops points out the need for one in Boyle Heights.

It’s coming. Signage is going up warning motorists about this Sunday’s Wilshire CicLAvia. Speaking of which, the Militant Angeleno has updated his fascinating guide to the Wilshire route, while LA Magazine looks at the churches, temples and Islamic Centers you’ll pass on the way. And Santa Monica Spoke plans a feeder ride.

Great video of a father and sleepy son sharing an 11 minute tandem ride to a Westchester nursery school. Thanks to Serge Issakov for the heads-up.

Racing for the Wolfpack Hustle team, LA’s own Jo Kelso won last weekend’s Red Hook Criterium in NYC.

A memorial will be held April 12th for fallen cyclist and former Pasadena city council member Sid Tyler.

Mark your calendar for Glendale’s Jewel City Fun and Fitness Ride on May 18th.

 

State

Calbike offers a detailed update on their legislative agenda.

A Redding bike rider was critically injured when a truck driver apparently drifted onto the wrong side of the road and hit him head-on.

 

National

Used bikes are a $2.4 billion business in the US. I’m all in favor of buying quality second-hand items; we even adopted a used dog.

An 82-year old Omaha woman faces a misdemeanor vehicular homicide charge after crossing the center line to hit and kill a cyclist riding on the opposite shoulder. She surrendered her license last week; sadly, too late to save the life of an innocent bike rider.

In an all too similar case, an 83-year old Holocaust survivor is charged in the hit-and-run collision that took a New York cyclist’s life. Every driver eventually reaches the point where they no longer belong behind the wheel; the key is recognizing it — and doing something about it — before it’s too late.

Florida police will target law-breaking group bike rides and the drivers who threaten them.

 

International

A British driver gets a well-deserved eight years for a drunken, high-speed hit-and-run.

Good advice not to aim your extra-bright lights where they could blind others on the roadway.

My Pennsylvania Dutch grandmother may have taught me to swear in German, but reading it, not so much. But I’m told this cost-benefit study of mandatory helmet laws show they don’t pencil out; in fact, benefits equaled just over 70% of costs.

 

Finally…

I’m not much on April Fools pranks online. But here are two of the better ones, as separated freeway bike lanes turn out to be the real reason for the billion dollar 405 widening, and LA’s own Pure Fix invents the first spoke-free bike wheel (unfortunately, Pure Fix has removed the page; thanks to Opus the Poet for the heads-up.)

 

Your fool-free Morning Links, including a well-done bike film, and a book deservedly thrown by OC prosecutors

 

Yes, this post is dated April 1st, despite my best efforts to get it online earlier.

But no, you won’t find any April fools here.

Except possibly a writer/rider who keeps hoping the motoring public will somehow get it, and transform our roadways into the safe and welcoming streets they can and should be. That cyclists will assert their right to ride the streets in a safe and courteous manner.

And that both will form, if not a genuine friendship, as least a grudging détente that will allow us all to arrive at our various destinations in peace. And in one piece.

It could happen.

Right?

………

Orange County prosecutors are prepared to throw the book at a young driver facing 15 years and nine months in state prison. As well as one year and six months in county jail.

And frankly, she couldn’t deserve it more.

Allegedly, of course.

That’s what 18-year old Tustin resident Sommer Gonzalez could potentially serve once she’s arraigned on Tuesday in the hit-and-run death of 21-year old cyclist Joe Robinson this past February.

Robinson, who worked at Jax Bicycle Center in Irvine, was riding in the bike lane on southbound Santiago Canyon in Orange when he was plowed down from behind by Gonzalez’ car. Gonzalez fled the scene, but was arrested an hour later based on the description of her car given by an off-duty fire battalion chief, who also found Robinson’s body.

According to Rancho Santa Margarita Patch, she will face a long list of charges.

  • One felony count each of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence while intoxicated
  • Driving under the influence of drugs causing bodily injury
  • Hit and run with death
  • Possession of a controlled substance
  • One misdemeanor count of use and under the influence of a controlled substance
  • One misdemeanor count of possession of a controlled substance paraphernalia
  • Sentencing enhancement allegations for inflicting great bodily injury
  • Sentencing enhancement for fleeing the scene of a crime

The real tragedy here is that two lives were destroyed that morning. A well-loved young man needlessly lost his life.

And a young woman willfully threw hers away.

Thanks to Jeffrey Fylling and John McBrearty for the heads-up.

………

Great short film with a wicked twist if you have a little less than 10 minutes to kill. Thanks to John Murphy aka murphstahoe for the link.

………

Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton asks why Metro is looking at raising fares while giving away free parking. Damn good question if you ask me.

HuffPo talks with CicLAvia co-founder Aaron Paley.

The LA Weekly casts a questioning eye on the state’s proposed vulnerable user law; don’t bother reading the comments unless you’ve got a strong stomach.

Three perspectives on turning the Riverside bridge into an elevated park.

A walker is injured after looking over her shoulder but still turning into the path of a cyclist, leading a community leader says more must be done to prevent future collisions on the Elysian Valley section of the LA River bike path.

A cop in Watts pulls over a cyclist for a traffic violation, and ends up shooting a pit bull after its owner — not the bike rider — sics him on the officer. Thanks to Rick Risemberg for the heads-up.

 

State

Jeff Miller of the Alliance for Biking and Walking will speak about Building a Bike Friendly City in Santa Ana next Monday. Thanks to Frank Peters for the tip.

Brewcyclers will be riding to a new brewery in Anaheim at the end of this month.

Turns out San Diego’s new police chief is one of us.

 

National

A pair of BMX-borne bastards knock an  85-year old Las Vegas woman down and steal her belongings; there’s a special place in hell for people like that.

A Missouri woman faces up to seven years after pleading guilty to the high-speed hit-and-run death of a cyclist.

A New York artist offers an illustrated guide to the city’s stereotypical bicyclists.

Bike traffic just keeps growing on DC’s protected bike lanes.

 

International

A Brit band plans a full album of bike-inspired songs.

Once again, a British bike rider is seriously injured after someone strings a rope across the pathway he was riding on.

London buses will get new bike and pedestrian sensors to help avoid collisions.

A promo for a UK bicycling festival is pulled after people call it sexist. And yes, it is. Or was.

Ten things that put British residents off riding; I suspect those same reasons would hold true just about anywhere.

An Irish teenager says he was so drunk and stoned he had no idea what he was doing when he assaulted a cyclist, beat her viciously and stole her groceries. Maybe someone can save room for him in Hades next to those BMX bandits.

 

Finally…

An Aussie reporter offers five tips to avoid helmet hair — including just not riding.

And a photo from JoJointhe310 shows that there are exceptions to every rule.

Bike Parking Sign

 

Bypassing busy traffic on 7th Street, notes from the LAPD bike task force, and Beverly Hills bike lanes redux

When is a bike lane not a bike lane?

When it’s a traffic lane allowing impatient drivers to bypass backed-up traffic for a whole block, shaving maybe a few seconds off the evening commute.

……….

A few notes from last week’s meeting with the LAPD’s bike liaisons.

First off, Sgt. Lazlo Sandor has taken over as bike liaison for the West Traffic Division; you’ll find his email address on the Resources page.

As part of Chief Beck’s proclamation that this will be the year of traffic enforcement, the LAPD has transferred a number of officers to work the city’s four traffic divisions. The good news is, the city is now focused on cracking down on dangerous drivers — like the one in the video above, for instance. The bad news is, bike violations are considered traffic offenses as well, so be forewarned.

One of the biggest problems in fixing traffic problems has long been that no one has been tracking bicycling and pedestrians collisions, injuries and fatalities. Which meant no one had a clue just what and where those problems might be, let alone how to solve them. Fortunately, the LAPD is now keeping track of all of the above as part of their Compstat program, requiring traffic officers to appear four times a year to discuss problems in their areas. And the department is tracking the most dangerous intersections for all road users to determine what has to be done to improve safety for everyone.

Last week’s story that Houston police officers were conducting traffic stings to improve safety for the city’s cyclists made news around the world. Which may have come as a surprise to LA officers, who have been doing the same thing for some time without public notice. In fact, LA’s West Traffic Division has conducted nine such stings since the first of the year — eight to enforce bike lane issues and one for stop sign enforcement. A total of 53 people were cited, including both cyclists and drivers; LAPD policy does not allow for selective enforcement, so they’re required to write up any violations they see during a sting, regardless of who commits it.

Finally, they stressed the importance of getting permits in advance for events that will require police participation. When the recent Wolfpack Hustle Marathon Crash Race was cancelled at the last minute, the department cancelled the officers who had been scheduled to work the event. Then when it was rescheduled at the last minute as a ride, they had to scramble to get enough officers to work the event on such short notice, and ended up paying out over $10,000 in overtime. While they understood the situation with the Marathon Crash, they ask for a minimum of 28 days advance notice to avoid any issues if you’re planning some sort of event.

On the other hand, if you break the law, they’re happy to show up with little or no notice.

……….

The subject of bike lanes on Santa Monica Blvd through Beverly Hills is back on the council agenda this Tuesday. Except they’re not, but maybe they are. It’s a complicated subject explained well by Better Bike.

Meanwhile, a Beverly Hills homeowner’s association offers their reasons why bike lanes are a bad idea, few if any of which actually hold water.

For instance, someone should tell them that California law requires that drivers merge into bike lanes before making right turns, rather than turning across the lane as they suggest (#2). And surprisingly, blind spots exist on motor vehicles, which can hide the presence of bikes from careless drivers like themselves, whether or not bike lanes exist.

……….

Finally, this just in as a friend of mine reports an assault while riding home on PCH in Orange County.

I was riding on the super dark stretch of PCH between the oilfield and 10,000 miles of ocean. An empty car was stopped, no blinkers, on the shoulder. With cars coming up behind me at 60mph, the only option is to stop and wait for them to pass, or hike over the shrubs on the slope to the right of the (red) curb.

I take a picture of the car, and an angry guy kicks the driver’s side door open, emerges, and comes at me barking, “What the fuck are you doing?”

I dismount in case I have to run for it and start backing away while he repeatedly demands the camera, which he ain’t gonna get.

Long story short, he ends up throwing me, my bike & my bag (containing the Coolpix he was so interested in, plus my MacBook Air & iPad) into the ice plant.

I’m not injured, but my glasses are still out there because I gave up looking for them when the damn sprinklers came on. Also, I called Hunny PD back, and arranged them to just meet me at work for the report. The officer arrived before me AND TOLD MY COWORKER I HAD BEEN HIT BY A CAR. Boy, was she relieved when I grumped up my boss’s porch stairs with bike on shoulder & no visible injuries.

Lesson: Assume even parked cars are full of ex-convicts who will be violently angry with you for nothing.

I’m scared to check my MacBook.

A little light Morning Linkage for your Cesar Chavez Day

 
Local

A year after he was critically injured in a horrific hit-and-run, Damian Kevitt joins last Friday’s Critical Mass to honor other hit-and-run victims.

Meet Rick Risemberg — Mr. Bicycle Fixation himself — when he leads an art tour at Sunday’s CicLAvia. I’d offer to lead a beer tour, but my legs don’t pedal so good after the second one.

Cyclists from SoCal and beyond complete a successful San Dimas Stage Race.

 

State

Calbike invites you to sign a petition supporting AB 2398 to increase penalties for crashing into vulnerable road users.

A 15-year old bike rider is critically injured in an Ontario collision.

The Redlands Bicycle Classic returns for a 30th edition with an extra, added Highlands stage.

A wounded warrior bikes across the country on prosthetic legs after losing his in Afghanistan.

An Oceanside letter writer says screw planning and complete streets, I want my traffic lanes; maybe he has relatives in Ontario, Canada.

San Diego celebrates its second CicloSDias.

Pregnant women pedal all the way to the delivery room; thanks to Ryan Gratzer for the heads-up.

 

National

Bicycling is more than okay in Downtown OKC.

A Chicago cyclist receives $5.7 million settlement after he’s paralyzed by a falling tree limb the city determined didn’t need to be trimmed.

It may be time to give New York’s Citi Bike program some tough love, says the Daily News.

 

International

Presenting an animated history of the bicycle in just 70 seconds.

Without a commitment to long-term funding, the UK may be wasting the opportunity presented by the Tour de France’s Yorkshire start.

LA riders dodge cars and potholes; Brit riders massive rolls of paper rolling down the street.

At least all we have to worry about is angry drivers. An Aussie cyclist is hospitalized after crashing into a kangaroo; no word on whether the other, more bouncy party was injured.

 

Finally…

Don’t slug the pedestrian who complains about your bike riding. Just don’t.

 

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