Tag Archive for Emerald Necklace

Morning Links: Feds adopt bike/ped Vision Zero; Emerald Necklace Gateway opens; partial Ballona Creek closure

One quick note.

It’s come to my attention that the email notification informing subscribers about new posts on this site has stopped working for some reason. So if you’re not getting emails when new posts go up, we’re working on it.

In the meantime, I hope you’ll just keep coming back every day until we can get it fixed.

Thanks to Marvin Davis for the heads-up.

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Big news from DC, as the Federal Highway Administration has adopted Vision Zero.

At least for people on foot or two wheels.

The FHWA’s new strategic plan calls for reducing bicycling and pedestrian deaths by 80% by 2031, and eliminating them entirely in the next 20 to 30 years.

It also calls for a 50% increase in trips under five miles for bicyclists and one mile for pedestrians by 2025.

All by promoting better design standards, better data collection and reducing traffic speeds on urban streets.

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Thursday marked the opening of the first phase of the Emerald Necklace Gateway.

The 1.1 mile bike path connects the Metro Duarte/City of Hope Gold Line station with the existing San Gabriel River Bike Trail to form a 28-mile long route linking the upper part of the San Gabriel Valley to Seal Beach.

However, the San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports the bikeway is only half finished, despite being in the works for more than a decade; the full path is not scheduled to be completed until 2021 at best.

Bike SGV offers photos from yesterday’s opening.

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Speaking of bikeways, don’t plan on riding the eastern section of the Ballona Creek bike path during the day next week.

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Today’s common theme is cross-country bike riding.

Hats off to Ivan Schmidt; the 16-year old Long Beach teen rode 1,800 miles from British Columbia to Tijuana, raising $2,500 to fight rheumatoid arthritis.

A 67-year old man rode 2,400 miles from Chicago to San Bernardino, after surviving two open heart surgeries, six bypasses and an aortic valve replacement.

A retired fighter pilot is riding from Maine to Key West to honor fallen and disabled service members and their families.

A Canadian cyclist has raised over $150,000 for cancer research, traveling more than 3,500 miles since beginning a trans-Canada ride in June.

And 41 cyclists set off on a 1,325-mile self-supported ride down the length of Sweden, beginning 200 miles above the Arctic Circle.

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VeloNews talks with cycling legend Eddy Merckx about bike design, his favorite riders and the evolving standards of cool in the bike world.

Wired looks at the dramatic evolution in handcycles used by Paralympic athletes, leading to today’s $10,000 carbon fiber bikes.

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Local

According to the Census Bureau, bike commuting in LA County has finally reached a full 1%. Just imagine what it could be if we had safe places to ride.

CiclaValley can barely control his excitement over two Valley CicLAvias in 2017.

Santa Monica police will conduct another of their bicycle and pedestrian enforcement days today, followed a second one on Monday. Standard rules apply; obey the letter of the law while riding in the city so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

Long Beach’s unnamed bikeshare program has seen 3,500 people ride 35,000 miles in its first six months; it will eventually have 500 bikes at 50 stations.

Cycling in the South Bay calls for cyclists to turn out in support of Bikes May Use Full Lane signs at the Palos Verdes Estates city council meeting on Sept. 27th, even though it may require a lot of sitting.

 

State

Pink’s five-year old daughter is one of us.

Work has begun on two bridge widening projects in Carpinteria required to widen Highway 101, which will eventually include two new coastal bike lanes. Isn’t it cute how officials pretend widening highways will actually solve their traffic problems?

Holy one-man crime wave, Batman! A Ventura man is under arrest after stealing two crucifixes from the San Buenaventura Mission, then using them as weapons to attack people, before busting the window of a thrift shop and stealing a bicycle.

Other football programs get in trouble with the NCAA because their players tool around in Escalades and sports cars someone bought for them; at Stanford, it was a $3,500 bicycle.

A San Francisco woman was beaten and robbed by three bike riders when she approached them at an intersection to talk. Seriously, 3:24 am is probably not the best time to engage strangers in conversation, whether or not they’re on bikes.

Pleasanton officials approve safety changes to an intersection where a 72-year old bike rider was killed in June.

Marin drivers break out the torches and pitchforks over fears a proposed road diet will snarl traffic, even though studies show they often improve traffic flow.

A Chico letter writer calls on local cycling clubs to take the lead on cleaning up a bike path and reclaiming it from homeless squatters.

 

National

Bicycling explains how to sneak in a midweek overnight bikepacking trip. And enjoy your new women on bikes emojis.

NPR looks at how tactical urbanism is making a difference with small, incremental DIY changes throughout the US.

Bike rooms are the latest must-have amenity for any well-turned out luxury apartment building or condos.

Portland Police are looking for a spandex-clad road cyclist who yelled racial slurs and pepper sprayed a family of black kids. There is simply no excuse for crap like that. Ever. Period.

A 74-year old resident of a Wyoming senior home made his escape by bicycle after shooting three people before taking his own life.

The Wall Street Journal says it can be a struggle to find a bikeshare bicycle in New York at rush hour, as people are often greeted with empty racks. Probably because they’re being used to practice operatic arias.

It takes a real lowlife to steal a Mobile AL bicycle coffee cart used to raise funds and awareness for human trafficking victims.

The distracted driver accused of killing a Georgia bike rider while high on prescription drugs had two other DUIs in the last three months, and had a severe drug dependency problem for at least four years. And yet she was allowed to keep driving until she actually killed someone.

 

International

What’s the point of building what may be the world’s tallest bicycle if you can’t get the bike chains you need to ride it through the Cuban embargo? At 33 feet, it’s 13 feet taller than the current record holder, LA’s STOOPIDTALLER, which is even taller than the famous STOOPIDTALL.

Bicycles donated through World Vision and World Bicycle Relief can be key to reducing teen pregnancy and keeping girls in school in Kenya.

A Masai elder is one of us, as he leads a group of bicyclists through Tanzania as part of the 7,500 mile Tour d’Afrique.

 

Finally…

Just because no one needs a VCR anymore, don’t stuff it in a briefcase and drop it off in front of a federal courthouse while riding your bike. Mooning rush hour traffic in China.

And if you already have an outstanding felony warrant on a weapons charge, don’t ride your bike with an open booze container.

And whatever you do, don’t tell the other inmates you were subdued by an 81-year old man.

 

Morning Links: Shooting on LA River bike path, Emerald Necklace opens, and write your own anti-bike screed

In case you missed it over the weekend, two bike riders were shot on the LA River bike path Friday night when they refused to give up their bikes to suspected gang bangers.

Let that be a reminder to always be careful riding through unlit areas after dark, especially when you’re out of view from the street and can’t be seen by other people.

And it can’t stressed it enough. If someone tries to take your bike, let them have it — especially if they’re armed.

No bike is worth your life, no matter what it cost or how much you need it.

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The first phase of the San Gabriel Valley’s Emerald Necklace bike path officially opens this Thursday.

emerald-neckace

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Great interactive piece from Chicago magazine on how to write an anti-bike diatribe without the inconvenience of actual thought.

It’s more than worth a few seconds of your time to write one of your own.

Here’s mine.

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-12-59-25-am

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Speaking of great pieces, a British cop explains the real problems on the roads — hint, it ain’t the people on two wheels. And offers advice that includes don’t bother looking drivers in the eye and don’t count on hi-viz to make you seen.

Although it can be challenging to muddle through for those of us on this side of the Atlantic, where English isn’t the English the English use.

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A 56-year old man went out for a bike ride, and accidently ended up leading the fourth stage of the Tour of Britain.

Caught on video: A fan steps out in front of the Peloton at the Vuelta, knocking a rider off his bike.

The head of the International Cycling Union swears that cycling is on top of the doping problem, unlike other sports. Maybe they should be checking the fans, too.

Semi-banned Lance Armstrong is keeping a hand in cycling anyway by creating a new Aspen CO mountain bike event.

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Local

Los Angeles unveils a vision of the city’s transportation future that relies heavily on self-driving vehicles, making street parking obsolete and opening space for bicycles. Before you hold your breath, make sure you have an oxygen tank on hand.

Caught on video: CiclaValley captures the bumpy pavement on the 7th Street bike lane in DTLA. Having ridden that one several times, I can attest that it was one of the most desperately needed bike lanes in town, yet is usually blocked by cars and delivery trucks, with pavement that would be rejected in most third-world countries.

The wife of fallen cyclist Rod Bennett has sued LA Fitness, alleging that they knew or should have known that hit-and-run driver Lucas James Guidroz was addicted to heroin; he was sent home from work early on the day he killed Bennett because he appeared to be under the influence, putting him behind the wheel without a chance to come down first.

Good news from Playa Vista, as Councilmember Mike Bonin announces a bike plan for the area, including a new bridge on Lincoln and a bike bridge over Ballona Creek; Bonin was one of just two councilmembers to vote against removing Westwood Blvd and Central Ave from the LA Mobility Plan.

Cycling in the South Bay says, to paraphrase in as few words as possible, don’t be such a dick when you ride.

The contribution page is now up for city council candidate and bike shop owner Josef Bray-Ali, who is running to unseat anti-bike incumbent Gil Cedillo. Bray-Ali is hosting a fundraiser at the Good Girl Dinette Tuesday evening.

 

State

San Francisco bike riders continue to push for safer infrastructure.

Ford is looking beyond the private car by buying a San Francisco crowdsourced shuttle bus company and investing in the city’s bikeshare system.

The Bay Area’s BART system comes up with a brilliantly simple idea, installing straps on train cars to help keep bicycles upright.

Napa is working to improve plans for roundabouts to make them safer for bicyclists.

A Sebastopol cyclist was killed during a police fundraising ride when the driver of an oversized pickup allegedly insisted on passing without room to get by, sideswiping her boyfriend before killing her.

More kind hearts, as a Lodi pub gives away 13 bicycles to children under 13.

A Davis columnist says the solution to dropping gas tax revenues is to raise the gas tax, rather than charge a vehicle mileage fee, then complains that cyclists don’t pay for the roads they ride. By that standard, neither do the owners of $75,000 Teslas or other e-cars, who still won’t pay a gas tax no matter how much you increase it.

 

National

The Christian Science Monitor says a bicycle is one of the things you should never go too cheap on, but says you can get a decent commuter bike for $300 to $400 — pretty good savings over the $8,698 average cost of operating a car.

Now that’s more like it. An Iowa driver gets 35 years — yes, three and a half decades — for the drunken crash that killed two motorists while driving over twice the speed limit. Now if we could just get them to take crashes involving bike riders seriously. Or better yet, keep people like this off the roads to prevent them in the first place.

Evanston IL officials respond to complaints about a new protected bike lane by saying it would cost nearly $1 million to rip them out, while noting that the lane is improving safety just like it’s supposed to.

NPR looks at bicycling in Reading PA, where it says most people ride out of necessity, despite a lack of infrastructure.

A North Carolina columnist gets it, saying drivers need to by hyper-vigilant on the roads, and expect to see cyclists any time of the day.

 

International

Ten laughably bad bikeways from around the world.

I want to be like her when I grow up. Reuters talks with a 90-year old Chilean grandmother who still rides regularly, calling her bike her compadre and the reason for her longevity.

A Canadian bicyclist gets a speeding ticket for riding too fast in a school zone.

An editor for London’s Express gets it, saying all hit-and-run cases should be treated as manslaughter.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero, as a Brit bicyclist saves the life of another rider who was trapped up to her waist in mud after falling into a ditch.

Someone is sabotaging Welsh mountain bike trails, yet a regional land manager just says they’re aware of a dispute between riders and local residents. More like an act of terrorism that could get someone seriously hurt. Or worse.

Nice piece from Ireland’s Lovely Bicycle on the many different meanings of cycling and cyclists.

A news columnist takes to the streets of Berlin, where he says everyone rides a bike, but the dangers on the streets demand more and better bike lanes. Which sounds a lot like LA, except for the first part.

A New Zealand bike shop chain got busted for charging full freight for bikes that were supposed to be on a half price clearance.

Singapore residents still view bicycling as a leisurely pursuit rather than a means of transportation, complicating government efforts to create a car-lite society.

 

Finally…

We may have to deal with LA drivers, but at least we don’t get mistaken for road kill. Another reason to wear a helmet — it protects against getting bashed in the head with a skateboard.

And your next bike could be a shapeshifter, which you could ride in your lovely new glow-in-the-dark knitted vest.

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On a personal note, today is the anniversary of the worst bike wreck of my life, when a massive swarm of bees didn’t lay a stinger on me, but I ended up in the ICU with a tube up my you-know-what and a massive blood bump on my hip anyway. 

I may have my problems these days, but I’m glad as hell to still be here. 

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