Tag Archive for L.A. Bicycle Advisory Committee

Morning Links: LADOT’s new focus on “transportation happiness,” and LA BAC meets tomorrow in Hollywood

LADOT chief and NACTO president Seleta Reynolds explains how Los Angeles is adapting urban mobility for the digital age — including an emphasis on transportation happiness.

To achieve that, she says,

We are currently drafting a Mobility Bill of Rights to identify core principles like reliability, safety, comfort, equity, transparency, and community that should be the foundation of services we provide or allow to serve Los Angeles. Each of these principles has a set of key performance indicators that we will baseline with Angelenos in order to guide improvements to existing service, like taxis and transit, and help us to regulate new services as they come into the city.

Of course, if the city really wants to increase transportation happiness, they’d place a greater emphasis on bike riding and safer streets, since bike riders are the happiest commuters.

Today’s photo show a new bike box next to Hollywood High School.

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The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee will meet this Tuesday at the Hollywood City Hall.

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Local

CiclaValley notes a Baby on Board sticker doesn’t stop a driver from texting.

A Santa Clarita radio station reports on the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition’s introductory bike ride along local trails this Saturday.

Santa Monica is hosting a safe streets open house tomorrow night to consider a makeover of 17th Street.

 

State

Bike riders offered warning about the dangers of self-driving cars before Uber decamped for Arizona to avoid regulation restrictions in California — and before Elaine Herzberg was killed as she walked her bike across a Tempe street.

Australian BMX champ Sam Willoughby continues to make progress at his San Diego home, two years after a crash in competition left him paralyzed from the chest down.

A San Diego Op-Ed says the city has to prioritize bikes and transit if it’s going to have any hope of meeting its climate goals.

Palo Alto is already backpedalling on ambitious plans to install eleven roundabouts, even before the first one opens.

After a news story last week revealed San Leandro police could be breaking the law in their crackdown on teen bike riders, they respond by accusing bicycle flash mobs of disrupting traffic. Which does not justify illegal bike seizures or assaulting kids on bikes.

Bike rentals have begun for the year in Yosemite. Although someone should tell NBC Bay Area to hire a decent proof reader; pretty sure they meant rentable, not rentalable.

 

National

A 1,300-mile bike ride this month will connect all three 9/11 crash sites for the first time.

A Missoula MT letter writer says studies show businesses don’t need wide streets to succeed, and the city can make better use of excess capacity. Which should be mandatory reading for anyone who complains about LA lane reductions.

Bicycling brought $137 million in health and business benefits to Northwest Arkansas last year, after two counties build 163 miles of bike trails over the last ten years.

An Indiana reporter says you don’t have to be a bicyclist to not want to see another ghost bike.

A new US bike route route could be coming to southern Kentucky.

A Connecticut reporter learns the benefits of bikeshare firsthand.

Pedaling in Palm Beach in the 1930, on the first balloon tires, in a bike club founded by the Schwinn founder’s son-in-law.

Streetsblog says instead of the failed pedestrian bridge that collapsed and killed several people, why not a complete streets makeover of the entire roadway?

 

International

A proposed Quebec law would dramatically jack up fines for scofflaw bicyclists.

The Guardian reviews MAMIL, the documentary featuring LA’s Eastside Bike Club, and partly filmed at Stan’s Bike Shop in Azusa.

A local paper examines why Cambridge is the UK’s leading cycling city.

The family of a popular Welsh chef and triathlete who was killed in a crash while on a training ride last year are opening a school in Fiji in his honor.

A new British survey shows ebikes are a hit with riders over 55, while a Kiwi columnist suggests ebikes will be a passing fad like adult tricycles. Note to world: If anyone ever calls me a “silver cyclist,” I’ll go buy a cane and beat them mercilessly with it.

A Zimbabwean man has died in Belgium, over a decade after he was brought to the country to train as a cyclist as part of a TV show.

Pakistani women ride to protest sexual harassment and fight to reclaim their place in public spaces.

South Korean bike makers struggle as air pollution and a lack of infrastructure discourages people from getting on their bikes in the country.

Singapore learns that a heavy hand is no panacea when it comes to dealing with abandoned dockless bikeshare bikes.

Hong Kong puts the blame on reckless bike riders for last year’s nearly 2,000 crashes, rather than the people in the big, dangerous machines.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutchman Niki Terpstra won this year’s Tour of Flanders in a solo breakaway; countrywoman Anna van der Breggen took the women’s title. A massive crash caused Team Sky’s captain to get DQ’d for riding off the course. SoCal’s Coryn Rivera discusses the emotions she went through after winning last year’s race

Don’t expect any resolution to the Chris Froome doping allegations anytime soon; the case is expected to continue until after this year’s Tour de France.

A Denver Post columnist questions the wisdom of underground bike races on public trails, but doesn’t seem to really mind. Although someone should tell him that LA’s Wolfpack Hustle Marathon Crash Race hasn’t been held for a few years now.

 

Finally…

It may be a bicycling paradise, but you still have to follow the rules. Your next bike seat might look funny, but feel better.

And nothing like skitching at highway speeds, sans helmet.

Not that one would help at those speeds.

Morning Links: Justice for Deborah Gresham, bike settlements soar due to bad LA streets, and BAC meets tomorrow

Finally, there’s justice for a fallen bike rider.

It’s been 16 months since Walking Dead fan page author Deborah Gresham was hit by a driver while riding her bike in Stanton.

And left to die in the street, literally within site of her own home.

The driver, Ricardo Hernandez Sandoval, was arrested less than an hour later after horrified witnesses followed him to his home. He was booked on charges of felony hit and run, felony DUI and vehicular manslaughter.

Now I’ve been informed that he was sentenced on Friday to four years for vehicular manslaughter under the influence, and five years for the fatal hit-and-run, to be served consecutively.

In other words, nine years total, along with fines and restitution.

I’m also told the assistant DA had to wipe tears from his eyes when Gresham’s children gave their witness statements.

It won’t bring Deborah Gresham back. But for once, a fallen SoCal cyclist got justice from the courts.

If you haven’t yet, take a few minutes to read Peter Flax’s moving, must-read story about this tragedy. Photo from Ghost Bikes LA.

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Great story in the LA Times about the soaring cost of settlements involving bike riders who were injured due to the city’s failing streets.

According to the story, the City of Los Angeles settled with 17 bicyclists last year for a total of $19 million, over four times more than in any previous year.

That’s $19 million that could have gone to fixing the streets before anyone got hurt, rather than waiting until it was too late.

It was those settlements that inspired Councilmember Mitch Englander’s misguided proposal to ban the striping of bike lanes on any streets with less than an A pavement grade, and removing any existing ones from streets with a B or less.

Which would leave few, if any, bike lanes anywhere in Los Angeles.

And only serve to increase the city’s liability when bike riders continue to get injured on streets that used to have bikeways.

The story quotes me on that, as well as talking with BikinginLA sponsor and Calbike board member Josh Cohen.

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The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee will meet tomorrow night in Hollywood; the BAC is the only official voice for bike riders in the City of LA.

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The LACBC has unveiled a new video explaining who they are and what they do as part of their 20th Anniversary Celebration.

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Local

It shouldn’t surprise anyone who’s ridden a bike through there to learn that the intersection of Devonshire Street and Reseda Blvd is the most dangerous one in the state.

LA2050 is offering a total of $1 million in grants to five organizations for projects designed to make Los Angeles, “the best place to learn, create, play, connect and live.” Applications will start being accepted on March 1st.

A bike rider was hit by a car in Pacific Palisades last Wednesday; no word on how the victim is doing. The driver somehow claimed to be driving just 15 mph in a 45 mph zone at the time of the crash.

Tomorrow the UCLA Bicycle Academy intends to confront the members of the Regents Health Services Committee to demand that the statewide UC Health system lose its automotive bias and recognize the health benefits of bicycling.

LA celebrated the official opening of a one-block long Green Street in the Del Rey neighborhood, connecting Westlawn Ave with the Ballona Creek bike path.

 

State

Sad news from Hesperia, where a father drowned rescuing his nine-year old son from the California Aqueduct, after the boy slipped in as they rode their bicycles along the canal.

Caltrans is warning about construction delays on the the coastal bike path north of Ventura through the month of February, though the path will remain open.

A decision could be made this week on the proposed San Luis Obispo bike boulevard that has brought the anti-bikeway NIMBYs out of the woodwork.

For the first time, you won’t need a vintage bicycle to participate in the Eroica California in Paso Robles.

More sad news, this time from Oakland, where a man on a bike was killed in a collision with a big rig truck.

 

National

Slate says requiring bicyclists to wear sensors so self-driving cars don’t crash into them is cheating, and autonomous vehicles should be able to spot people riding bicycles on their own, without outside help.

Details have been released for this year’s Ride the Rockies bike tour through the Colorado high country; it will cover 418 miles and nearly 26,000 feet of vertical climbing in six days. And it will visit the tiny lakefront town where my mother worked as a waitress when she was just 18.

Seriously? The death of a Kansas cyclist competing in the state time trial in 2015 was the catalyst for a proposed state law prohibiting negligent driving. Except the penalty would be a whopping $45, which isn’t likely to change anyone’s driving habits.

Michigan is doubling the width of a four-foot bike lane and adding other safety improvements, after two women were killed there two years ago. Maybe they could try making improvements like that before someone gets killed. Which goes for Los Angeles, and everywhere else, as well.

New York news media goes berserk after mobs of “crazed, angry cyclists” swarm drivers, smashing a car window and punching a driver. Although it turns out it was really just 16 teenagers on bicycles, and the cop who was injured was hit by a car making a U-turn to go after them.

 

International

Canadian cross-country ski clubs are slowly opening their trails to fat bikes.

Ofo dockless bikeshare comes to London, as the Guardian says it will be to cycling what Uber is to taxis.

LA bike riders aren’t the only ones who have to deal with crappy pavement.

The economic impact of bicycling adds the equivalent of nearly $1 billion to the Scottish economy.

 

Competitive Cycling

The incomparable Katie Compton had to settle for second place in the women’s world cyclocross championships, finishing behind Belgian Sanne Cant.

Belgium’s Wout van Aert won the men’s world cyclocross title for the third consecutive year.

 

Finally…

Buy a bike, bore your dinner companions. UFC champ Connor McGregor is one of us.

And yes, you just got dropped by a priest on a folding bike.

No doubt staged, but still fun.

Morning Links: Bray-Ali endorsed by Times in CD1, entitled driver behaving badly, and LA BAC meets tonight

Now this is big.

Former Flying Pigeon LA bike shop owner Joe Bray-Ali’s candidacy to unseat incumbent CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo got a huge boost yesterday when he won the endorsement of the LA Times.

While Cedillo has a huge advantage in fundraising, much of it coming from developers and others seeking to influence City Hall, Bray-Ali’s upstart grassroots campaign has been making waves in the district, as he rides his cargo bike door-to-door to talk with local voters.

And the Times has noticed.

Many people in the district think of Bray-Ali, 37, as just a bike-shop owner and bike activist. Frustration over Cedillo’s part in stalling bike lanes on Figueroa Street propelled Bray-Ali into this race. But though he may be campaigning atop two wheels, he has educated himself way beyond bike and transit issues. In fact, his understanding of land-use policy is impressive for someone who has never worked in City Hall, and his experience running a small business in the city will make him a rare and important voice on the council.

They also seem to have a pretty good read on his opponent.

Cedillo has a reputation among community activists as someone hell-bent on helping developers build market-rate housing while paying little regard for the more prosaic concerns of the neighborhoods. This disinterest in the community is troubling; even more so is his indifference to the displacement of low-income constituents. (He called displacement in his district an “urban myth” in a meeting with the editorial board. The city’s own data show it is not.) Building more housing is a virtue — the city is in a housing crunch, and more market-rate housing means more housing, period. But it shouldn’t come at the expense of a neighborhood’s affordability and quality of life. A councilman’s job is to balance the interests of neighborhoods with those of the population as a whole, and Cedillo doesn’t seem to be interested in that task…

The winner of this race will have an extra long term (the recent change in city elections means the winner will hold office for 5½ years) during a building boom that could fundamentally change the district. It is imperative that the person making the decisions focus on the needs of the community, not just a personal vision. The candidate who is best prepared to do that for Council District 1 is Bray-Ali.

Meanwhile, he also won the endorsement of Joel Epstein, writing for the Huffington Post.

Fact: Joe Bray-Ali has been a tireless advocate for safer streets for pedestrians, bike riders and drivers. A key leader in the safe streets Figueroa for All movement, Joe’s advocacy is helping make North East L.A. a safer place to live and is improving the neighborhood’s connections to Pasadena and the Los Angeles River.

Joe’s vision for CD 1 and the entire city, includes zero deaths and injuries from irresponsible, dangerous drivers. This is just one more reason that Josef Bray-Ali should be CD 1’s next councilmenber.

It’s time that CD 1 was represented by a councilmember who cares about the district. It’s time to elect Joe Bray-Ali.

On a personal note, I’ve been encouraging Joe Bray-Ali to run for city council since I first met him nearly ten years ago.

I’ve never met anyone more passionate about improving safety on our streets — myself included. Or more committed to improving the quality of life for the people who live in Northeast LA.

And few people, in or out of government, are more knowledgeable about the way city government works, and how it can be made to work more efficiently and better serve the people of this city. Not to mention possessing a rare ability to dig through city budgets line by line to determine where the money is actually going, as opposed to where it should be.

Joe has been a longtime advocate for better streets and better government. It’s time that passion and commitment is put to work serving, not just the bicycling community, but all the residents of CD1 and the City of Los Angeles.

Thanks to Robert Peppey for the heads-up.

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If you’re looking for a visual definition of real schmuck, Greg Heining sends us this video of a driver cutting off an elderly woman with a walker as she makes her way across a crosswalk.

Sadly, this sort of thing happens every day, almost everywhere.

And yet, they say bicyclists act entitled.

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The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee meets at 7 pm tonight at Hollywood Neighborhood City Hall, 6501 Fountain Avenue.

This is the city’s only official voice for bicyclists, yet three of the seats remain unfilled. If you’re a resident of council districts 9 (Curren Price), 10 (Herb Wesson) or 13 (Mitch O’Farrell), contact them today and politely ask your councilmember to get off his ass and appoint someone.

Then not so politely if they still don’t.

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Bike racing’s governing body issues new rules for support vehicles to improve safety in the peloton. Even though the only way to really improve safety would be to ban them entirely.

The Philadelphia Bicycle Coalition is working to bring back the cancelled Philadelphia International Cycling Classic.

The U-23 development team run by Axel Merckx is providing talented young British riders with an alternative path to pro cycling.

Former cyclist Bridie O’Donnell discusses the sexual and emotional abuse women riders face in the sport, including the abuse she suffered at the hands of her former coach as a young triathlete.

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Local

Streetsblog looks at the recent LA Great Streets Challenge winners, as well as Vision Zero grants.

KCBS-2 anchor Jeff Vaughn is riding to fight MS.

CiclaValley goes riding on the other road closed to motor vehicles in Griffith Park.

Time Out looks at 14 National Parks within driving distance of Los Angeles. Which means they’re in bicycling distance, too.

Long Beach is challenging residents to walk or ride their bikes on the Shoreline Pedestrian/Bicycle Path, as they try to reach one million trips on the path’s Eco-Counter.

 

State

The San Diego Bicycle Coalition hosted a training session to teach people how to organize grassroots political advocacy efforts for safer, expanded access for bicycles.

In LA, they shut down bike paths to do freeway work; in San Diego County, they shut down freeway lanes, in part to install bike paths.

An alleged drunk driver was arrested for the hit-and-run that left a Bakersfield bike rider with multiple broken bones.

Registration is now open for the 104-mile Tehachapi GranFondo, which will evidently take place sometime. Note to Bakersfield Now: One of those famous Five W’s stands for when. Just a hint. Update: Thanks to MTS, who points out the ride rolls on September 16th.

Now that’s more like it. San Francisco police are deploying extra officers to crack down on traffic violations by drivers at locations where bicyclists or pedestrians have been injured.

San Francisco scraps plans for a raised bike lane on Polk Street after concluding that it would also need to be parking protected. So what’s the point of raising the bike lane if it’s already protected?

 

National

Curbed says even with an auto-centric administration in DC, private car ownership could plummet in the US.

PeopleForBikes ignores the game, and watches the Super Bowl to count the number of bikes in the ads.

Redfin lists the best cities for living without a car; San Francisco takes the top spot, while cross-bay neighbor Oakland checks in at number ten. Needless to say, Los Angeles didn’t make the list.

Lifehacker says there are few things dorkier than putting a bell on your bike, but insists you should do it anyway.

An Iowa letter writer says requiring bicycles to have lights at night won’t save lives because most of the state’s fatalities occurred during the day. Including the one that killed her boyfriend.

Bikeshare is coming to Roanoke VA, with 50 bike at stations scattered around the city.

 

International

Over 5,000 Costa Rican cyclists rode on Sunday to demand safer streets.

A new short film celebrates the success of Vancouver’s prescient multi-modal street design.

London’s Evening Standard explains why you should join a cycling club, and how to fuel your ride.

There’s a special place in hell for someone who would push a 92-year old British woman off her bicycle to steal the equivalent of seven and a half bucks.

Now that’s more like it, too. Large trucks are banned from a narrow British lane where they weren’t supposed to be in the first place after a bike rider was injured in a collision.

The Brit press is up in arms over bicyclists filtering through traffic. Even though it’s legal. And even though it doesn’t seem to be a problem.

A new German project raising funds on Kickstarter promises to deliver a flexible, lightweight bike lock made up of five layers that are saw-resistant, cut-resistant, fire-resistant, waterproof, and dirt-repelling. Because really, who wants a dirty lock?

Today was national Go By Bike Day in New Zealand. Or yesterday, since it’s already tomorrow there.

Chinese app-based bikeshare comes to Singapore to rescue the city from its overly crowded streets.

Caught on video: Dozens of people team up to lift a van off a Chinese bicyclist following a collision; thanks to their efforts, the victim didn’t appear to have suffered any injuries.

 

Finally…

You only have to ride around the block to stay in shape, as long as you do it really, really hard. If you really want to make your point, say it again, and again.

And once again, a bike rider saves the day. Or the dog, as the case may be.

 

Morning Links: Jonathan Weiss on LA and BMX, the LABAC meets tomorrow, and the improper use of a bicycle

My apologies for the continued problems with email notifications for subscriber to this site. We’re still working on getting it fixed.

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Jonathan Weiss, longtime LA Bicycle Advisory Committee, has discussed the history of BMX racing with us before, including the birth of the sport right here in Los Angeles. So when I received the following email from him over the weekend, I wanted to share his thoughts with you.

I have a local history addiction.  I’m into bicycling.  And I hopped off curbs on my Schwinn as a kid in suburban Detroit.  So, when I learned that Palms Park in the nearby Palms district of West Los Angeles was the birthplace of BMX, I had to do something about it.  I could imagine and identify with some these local kids (and others they attracted) racing up, down, and around some hills on their modified Schwinn Stingrays like motocross racers and with races sanctioned (entrance fees, awards and even insurance) by Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department.  This nearby park was the Elysian Fields, the first field of dreams, the epicenter of the first X-Games sport.

So, I put together some of the story, I set up a Facebook page, and I got in touch with some of those who started BMX racing.  That’s the fun part of history.  The tougher part is when some of the participants and eye-witnesses to history, those who I’ve been lucky enough to get to know, start to go.  On October 1st, another left us – Rick Twomey.

From me, and from fans from around the world, thanks for sharing your memories with me and on the Facebook page, Rick.  And thanks for what you’ve left behind.

If we’re lucky enough to have the 2024 Olympics in Los Angeles – with BMX competition in Long Beach – I know I’ll be thinking of you, innovator, sponsor, and author Rick Twomey, and of Rec and Parks’ Ronald Mackler, who left us in 2010, and of Scot Breithaupt, who left us last year.

Note: I failed to mention that Weiss left the BAC earlier this year. We all owe him a round of thanks for his years of service to LA’s bicycling community.

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Speaking of the BAC, the next bi-monthly meeting of LA’s only official voice for bicyclists is tomorrow night in Hollywood.

bicycle-advisory-committee-agenda-2016-10-04

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If you missed it, bicyclists sadly lost their lives in both Palm Springs and Yorba Linda over the weekend.

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Local

The Los Angeles County Bicycling Coalition’s Tamika Butler spoke about Planning While Black at the NACTO Designing Cities Conference last week, with a presentation that reportedly brought down the house.

CiclaValley complains about serious city inaction on clearing the dirt hazard in the Forest Lawn bike lane.

Mickey Rourke is one of us, as he takes his dog for a ride in WeHo.

Santa Monica police arrest a man for attempting to steal a number of bicycles from the Bike Center after employees wrestled him down.

Plans are in the works for a single, integrated bikeshare system that would include Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, Long Beach and UCLA, with possible expansion to Culver City and the South Bay.

Rolling Hills Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes and Palos Verdes Estates make plans to work together to address traffic and safety issues across city borders on the peninsula, as South Bay bicyclists push for greater safety on the roads.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition is holding their October meeting tonight.

Bike the Vote LA is hosting a ballot party in DTLA tonight to discuss choices for next month’s phone book-sized ballot.

 

State

Get your pizza delivered poolside by bicycle in Palm Springs.

The San Luis Obispo District Attorney proves it is in fact possible to charge a driver who wasn’t texting or under the influence with vehicular homicide for killing a cyclist — in this case, a champion triathlete and the wife of a Cal Poly dean.

The story of Benicia cops buying a new bicycle for a teenager who was walking four hours a day to get to and from work has gone around the world.

Napa County tries rumble dots, rather than rumble strips, to keep drivers from drifting off the road, and protect bike riders on the shoulder.

Sad news from Modesto, where a bike rider was killed in a collision Friday night.

A horrifying story from Redding, as a man believes he was attacked while riding his bike to the drug store, but can’t remember what happened after suffering a broken arm and eye socket, along with multiple skull fractures.

 

National

A government website says sharrows don’t make bicycling in urban areas any safer.

Yes Magazine says women are being left behind even in the most bike friendly states, and offers suggestions on how to change that.

A sports website looks back on the Tour de Trump, the American bike race sponsored by the GOP’s current presidential candidate for a two whole years back in the ‘80s.

Colorado Springs CO residents can’t seem to grasp the concept of a road diet, let alone give time for traffic to adjust.

A Polish bike rider sets a new record for bunny hopping 3,461 steps up the former Sears Tower in Chicago.

A Chicago letter writer says bikes should be banned from the city’s busiest streets, insisting that bicyclists somehow make traffic worse by never obeying the law on streets he claims are paid for with gas taxes. Never mind that public taxes pay for city streets, traffic is caused by all those cars, and most drivers aren’t all that law abiding, either.

A Connecticut man returns home after a 12,124 mile ride around the perimeter of the US to help ensure veterans have enough to eat.

A new study finds that every $1,300 spent on New York bike lanes adds another year of life to the overall population of the city.

A New Orleans bike rider plans to keep riding even after she was the victim of a hit-and-run.

A Florida man faces criminal charges for putting a milk crate on his bike.

 

International

The next bus driver who honks at you may not be one.

Stunt cyclist Danny MacAskill offers advice on how to fall off your bike, while Bike Radar tells you how to hose it down.

Caught on video: A London pedestrian berates a bicyclist for riding through a crosswalk when people are using it.

A former Premier League soccer player plans to run and ride 1,000 miles linking 44 UK soccer stadiums.

A one-legged Irish cyclist sets the world’s first Paralympic hour record.

Here’s your chance to cross the Rubicon and take a month-long European bike tour in the steps of Julius Caesar.

A Dutch study concludes bike riders will usually choose the most comfortable route rather than the most direct.

California’s former Governator is busted for biking in the Munich rail station.

Bicycling continues to grow around the world, as Iranian cities Isfahan and Neishabur work to accommodate bicyclists, though Tehran lags behind.

New Zealand bicyclists push for a repeal of the country’s mandatory helmet law, even though the country’s leaders appear to have no intention of doing so.

 

Finally…

Who was that meth-carrying masked man on the lightless bike? It’s one thing to carry a joint when you ride; another to carry the entire plant with you.

And this is not the proper use of a bicycle, no matter how pissed off you are.

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L’shanah tovah to everyone nursing a Rosh Hashanah hangover this morning.

Morning Links: Curmudgeonly SaMo writers, LABAC meets tonight, and giving on Giving Tuesday

Apparently tired of telling kids to get off his lawn, a curmudgeonly SaMo writer complains about a whopping four — yes, four — Main Street parking spaces that are being converted into parklets, which will evidently prevent anyone from parking anywhere in the neighborhood ever again; he similarly bemoans the parklets and loss of traffic lanes on Broadway in DTLA.

As an aside, the story mentions that the Santa Monica Planning Commission will meet on Wednesday to consider the city’s bike and pedestrian plans, which he’s clearly not in favor of, either.

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Meanwhile, Dr. Michael Cahn forwards this letter copied from the Santa Monica Observer, in which a driver is offended when his attempt to educate and/or enforce bike traffic laws from behind the wheel of his car is met with a predictable response.

TaylorLetterSMObserver

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LA’s Bicycle Advisory Committee, the city’s only official voice for bicyclists, meets tonight in the LAPD Hollywood Division Community Room, 6501 Fountain Ave.

BAC-Agenda

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The story of popular Silver Lake Trader Joe’s parking lot attendant Egee Mabolis is picked up by LAist and the Eastsider, following the bicycling injury that left him with no feeling in his arms and legs.

A gofundme account to help defray his medical costs has raised 3/5 of the $25,000 goal.

After all, it is Giving Tuesday.

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Speaking of Giving Tuesday, you can bid on a Silca SuperPista Ultimate Bicycle Pump hand-painted by cycling scion Taylor Phinney, with 100% of the proceeds going to support the Davis Phinney Foundation to fight Parkinson’s Disease. Phinney — Taylor, not Davis — is putting off additional surgery on his badly injured left knee in hopes of competing in next year’s Rio Olympics.

And with a little luck, a $10 donation to the (RED) campaign to fight HIV/AIDS could get you ice cream and ride through Central Park with U2’s Bono.

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Take a few minutes out of your day for this must-read piece from CiclaValley, in which he surprises a driver by saying he was lucky he got in a collision, even with his kids in the car, and even if the red light-running driver who hit him seemed to think it was no big deal.

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Next City offers a much better take on the documentary Bikes vs. Cars than yesterday’s Daily Beast hatchet job; the film opens at the Laemmle NoHo 7 this Friday.

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Local

Bicycling takes a very brief look at LA artist cycling tour guide and bike salesman Adam K. Masters, and how he got hooked on track racing.

Former DC and Chicago DOT chief and current author Gabe Klein calls for creative solutions like protected bike lanes and bikeshare stations to improve transportation in LA, along with a switch to self-driving cars.

A new video from Metro explains how to use the Metro Bike Hub at El Monte Station, which promises to be just the first of several throughout the LA area.

Temple City will consider a proposed redesign of Las Tunas Drive into a more vibrant, safe and people-friendly business district at tonight’s city council meeting; supporters of a more livable, walkable and bikeable street are urged to attend to counter expected opposition.

 

State

Good read from a cyclist who offers seven lessons he learned from riding 673 miles from San Francisco to San Diego with no idea what he was doing.

Oceanside residents are calling for safety improvements to the city’s main drag following the death of 12-year old Logan Lipton while he was riding his bike to school last month.

The Coronado bike lane madness goes on, as a letter writer says the town doesn’t need bike lanes because they didn’t slow traffic on a street where average speeds were only 28 mph to begin with.

Two local businesses come to the rescue after a burglar steals 26 bikes from a San Francisco middle school.

A San Francisco bike deliveryman comes to the rescue after a women gives birth to a premature baby on the sidewalk.

Stockton is holding a number of public workshops to update their Bicycle Master Plan. Let’s hope they don’t have to deal with lawsuits and recalcitrant councilmembers trying to overturn the public process, like some cities we could name.

 

National

The Pew Charitable Trusts says bike tourism means business, as cities and states are warming to the economic benefits of bicycling.

Seriously? Oahu residents suggest ticketing bike rental shops when their customers break the law. Which makes no more sense than holding car rental firms accountable when their customers speed or run red lights.

Indianapolis drivers are apparently confused by the city’s first parking protected bike lane.

City Lab says laws prohibiting bicyclists from wearing headphones, like one under consideration in Massachusetts, miss the point. Several writers, including frequent contributor Megan Lynch, beg to differ.

Brooklyn bike riders call for a statewide Idaho stop law.

The Wall Street Journal belatedly discovers that retirees are getting on their bikes. Note to the Journal: 50 ain’t exactly old.

A Philadelphia conference calls for Vision Zero to protect the lives of bicyclists and pedestrians; Toronto discusses the idea, as well.

A Delaware driver faces up to seven years for killing his bike-riding friend in a drunken hit-and-run.

Interesting idea from Florida, as a proposed law would require in-ground safety lights where bike paths cross roadways to alert drivers to the presence of bicycles.

Bighearted Tampa police officers chip in to buy a five-year old a new tricycle after his brand-new birthday bike was stolen in a car burglary.

 

International

Vancouver, which has made a massive investment in protected bike lanes, is rated Canada’s safest major city in which to ride a bike.

The Yukon tourism board wants you to explore the Great White North by fat-tire bike.

Brit bike riders are being offered a better deal on car insurance because they’re better drivers. Thanks to joninsocal for the link.

‘Tis the season. A bighearted four-year old British girl donates her new birthday bike so someone else can wake up to a new bike Christmas morning.

UK cyclists are being criticized for excessive speeds after single rider is clocked on Strava approaching 30 mph.

It’s a dream come true. Bike riders in one Danish town can outfit their bikes with special RFID tags that turn traffic lights green as they approach so they never have to stop for red lights.

Aljazeera says carless cities are the future of Europe. Maybe the idea will cross over to this country before we’re all old and grey.

A South African cyclist says the way to deal with dangerous roads is to stay off them when you can, and ride facing traffic when you can’t. Which is exactly the wrong thing to do.

Life is cheap in Melbourne, as an Aussie driver is fined a lousy grand for a fatal dooring.

‘Tis the season, too. An Australian town responds to complaints that it has the world’s worst Christmas tree by creating one made out of bicycles.

 

Finally…

Fund-Drive-With-Type-2If you’re trying to make your getaway by bike with a meth pipe and stolen guitar, make sure you can ride with it first. Or if you’re going to steal a bike, make sure the owner isn’t still attached to it.

And here’s your chance to ensure the Star Wars fan in your life ride gets to ride with his or her very own R2D2 bike helmet.

………

Thanks to Todd Munson for supporting this site by contributing to the BikinginLA Holiday fund Drive.

 

Morning Links: LA BAC meets tonight, Los Feliz NC discusses LA mobility plan, and bike Metro’s Rideshare Week

Let’s catch up on a few events of immediate interest.

First up, the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee is meeting at 7 pm tonight in the LAPD Hollywood Division Community Room, 6501 Fountain Ave.

This month’s agenda includes discussion of the role of the committee in the city’s Vision Zero plan, and why we’re not going to see the planned Northvale Bike Path that was supposed to run parallel to the new Expo Line extension.

And yes, it matters.

The BAC is the only official voice bike riders have in city government. And in theory, at least, its members should have the ear of the councilmembers who appointed them.

………

The Los Feliz Neighborhood Council is hosting a community forum to discuss LA’s Mobility Plan 2035 from 7 to 9 pm tonight at 1965 N Hillhurst Ave.

The good folks retroactively fighting the Rowena road diet, along with those who want to Fix the City by keeping our streets dangerous, will undoubtedly be there. It might not hurt to have a few rational bike-friendly voices in attendance to balance the scales.

Thanks to BAC VP Glenn Bailey for the heads-up.

………

It’s Rideshare Week, when Metro encourages you to carpool, ride bikes, take public transit, walk and vanpool to your destination.

And how do they love you? Let them count the ways…

First among these new initiatives, Metro has launched a new Rideshare campaign to encourage Angelenos to bring a friend along for the ride as opposed to driving alone. Statistics show that in California 37.3% of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions come from transportation, 71% of those emissions are from passenger vehicles, and 72% of commuters are driving alone. If every commuter were to involve one other person in their commute mode, then traffic would disappear and GHG emissions would greatly reduce. New campaign ads, titled “Friends don’t let friends drive alone” will appear online and on giveaway items available at events.

Second, Metro has collaborated with 3 community organizations to co-host creative ridesharing events:

  • Innovate LA with the Karaoke Rickshaw — Movable Parts, an artist collective of college professors, engineers, city employees and creatives, will construct and deploy a Karaoke Rickshaw. The bicycle powered machine will tour through various LA neighborhoods amplifying street sounds, interviews, and multi-lingual pop hits. The finale performance will take place at LA Innovation Week’s Innovate Pershing Square event on October 9.
  • Share the Ride to Ambulante Film Festival — Empact Communities, a grassroots bicycle advocacy group, has partnered with Metro to facilitate ridesharing to Ambulante Film Festival. Group bike rides led by Empact partners will bring attendants to several film screenings. All Ambulante events will be registered in www.Ridematch.info, a database website that facilitates carpooling with more than 300,000 users.
  • ¡Mobilizaté! Eastside Commuter Interviews — Multicultural Communities for Mobility (MCM) will convene along popular transit lines in East LA and Boyle Heights to engage ridesharers to share their street stories through a photo or short video. All stories will be captured through Twitter and Facebook and tracked by tagging @mcmhandles, @metrolosangeles and #SharetheRide.

Third, Metro is giving away prizes to commuters who register their rideshare trip using www.ridematch.info. Prizes include handbags from Brighton Collectables, Metro 7-Day TAP Passes, Barnes and Noble gift cards, Macy’s gift cards, gas cards, and more. Special thanks to Macy’s, Burbank TMO, AAA, VRide, Brighton Collectibles, and Enterprise Rideshare for the donations!

………

Bicycling recaps the Richmond world championships, concluding they were utterly unforgettable.

VeloNews asks if pro cycling’s WorldTour points championship really means anything. Be honest, did you even know there was a points championship, let alone that Alejandro Valverde won it? I didn’t think so.

Two-time Giro winner Ivan Basso retires at age 37, after successful treatment for testicular cancer. Sad to see Basso go out like that. In his prime, he made Lance work for every now-discredited victory.

………

Local

Another great, if difficult, read from Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman as she looks at the anniversaries of the hit-and-runs that took the lives of cyclists Andy Garcia and Benjamin Torres; the 21-year old drunk driver who killed Garcia and seriously injured two other riders is already out of jail after serving just 16 months of a 42 month sentence. Meanwhile, there will be a ride calling for justice for Torres on Saturday to mark the third anniversary of his still unsolved death.

Councilmember David Ryu’s office is amassing a database of broken sidewalks and cracked streets, and vise versa, that need repairs in the 4th council district. Thanks to David Wolfberg for the tip.

Tired of ticketing cyclists for riding salmon on a one-way street, UCLA responds by devoting half the street to what may be the LA area’s first contraflow bike lane. Update: Richard Risemberg points out there’s a contraflow bike lane on Marengo in Pasadena.

USC is now requiring all students, faculty and staff to register their bikes before parking them on campus, ostensibly to combat bike theft. However, mandatory bike registration programs can easily be used as an excuse to stop and search bike riders in the absence of probable cause, which is why LA’s registration program was repealed in 2009.

Continuing our school report, it’s Bike It! Walk It! Bus It! Week at Santa Monica public schools, while LA has 126 schools signed up for Wednesday’s Walk to School Day. Riding a bike to LA schools seems to be acceptable, as well; walking the last few steps after arriving in Mom’s massive SUV, not so much.

 

State

The anti-bike lane madness continues in San Diego-adjacent Coronado, where apparently any bikeway inspired, designed, assisted or implemented by anyone who doesn’t live on the island must be some sort of plot. And that goes for traffic lights, too. That town may be in more desperate need of a civic colonic than anywhere else on earth right now.

Temecula plans to put the fun in Fondo — just go with it — at the grammatically challenged first annual Temecula Spandex Stampede Cycling GranFundo on November 8th. It may be the first of what’s planned as an annual event, but can’t be called that until the second one. Hey, I don’t make the rules.

A former volleyball player who won a gold medal with the US team at the 1984 LA Olympics was seriously injured when he was hit by a pickup in Santa Barbara, after he reportedly ran a stop sign on his bike and rode on the wrong side of the street.

The San Francisco Chronicle looks at the Idaho stop law, which has become a political hot potato in the City by the Bay; a 2010 study shows it reduced bike collisions by about 30% without causing any known problems. But as everyone likes to say, San Francisco isn’t Idaho, and LA is Copenhagen. Which is just an excuse not to try something that has been proven effective somewhere else.

A former star of the long-running soap opera The Young and the Restless was just two riders back when a rider in Sunday’s Levi’s GranFondo tragically rode off the roadway.

Still more bad news from NorCal, as a Dixon driver is under arrest for felony charges of DUI and voluntary manslaughter after fatally rear-ending a bike rider on Sunday.

 

National

Garmin has released a new rear-facing radar that tells you when cars are coming from behind; the unit also includes a taillight that dims to save battery life when there’s no one behind you, and brightens to save yours when there is.

Boulder CO begins undoing the right-sizing of a city street. Which would seem to be wrong-sizing, mais non?

A moving story from Kansas, as 32 cyclists from a four state area come together to help a five-year old boy suffering from life-threatening aneurisms go for his first bike ride.

An Illinois man gets 55 months in jail for killing a cyclist while driving aggressively under the influence.

A new under-two-minute film looks at a 49-year old Minnesota firefighter who is also a champion track cyclist.

Pittsburgh’s bikeshare system is exceeding projections by averaging 12,000 rides a month.

A handicapped Pennsylvania man was rescued after being trapped for two days in a 300-yard bike/pedestrian tunnel when his motorized wheelchair stalled.

An Albany NY writer says it’s time to stop the debate over a proposed road diet and just do it.

A New York city councilman wants to remove 400,000 cars from the city streets by 2030, in part by subsidizing the city’s bikeshare system. Think an LA councilmember would ever have the courage to call for removing nearly a third of the cars from our streets? Me neither.

Alec Baldwin goes for a rainy bike ride in the Big Apple. Riding with earbuds and sans helmet does not, however, make him a “two-wheeled terror.”

 

International

The New York Times looks at the efforts of São Paulo’s mayor to shake off the city’s dystopian sprawl and automotive hegemony by making room for bikes, buses and people on foot.

A bike advocacy group on Canada’s Prince Edward Island calls for mandatory use of flashing daytime bike lights to stop an apparently non-existent rash of bike wrecks; a police source says the island experiences a whopping seven to fourteen bike-involved collisions each year. The same group wants to take over a program to enforce helmet use, as well. Maybe they define bike advocacy a little differently up there in the Great White North. Thanks to Lester Walters for the link.

In a tale that will sound familiar to anyone who’s followed the debate over bikeways in New York, London or right here in LA — or just about anywhere else – residents and business owners in a British town are up in arms over plans to make the city center more walkable and bikeable, even though studies show they would actually benefit from plans to de-emphasize cars.

Irish police ticket 244 bicyclists after new rules went into effect allowing on-the-spot fines.

A new Irish study says bike helmets are effective protection in collisions up to 31 mph, and not much good above that.

Only 18% of bike-riding Amsterdam club goers use both front and back bike lights. On the other hand, if you’re going to go lightless, that’s probably the place to do it.

Sixty Mangalore, India cyclists rode to save the embattled Netravathi river.

Two South Korean women completed a 3,300 mile ride across the US to raise awareness of Korean comfort women forced into sexual servitude by Japan in WWII.

 

Finally…

Lots of people bike to work; not many do it on a Penny Farthing, though. Don’t express your anarchist leanings by jogging in a DC bike lane or you could face a whole $10 fine.

And who’s the criminal if you break into a home to steal back your stolen bike after spotting it on Craigslist?

Which is not to say I wouldn’t do the same damn thing.

 

A giant falls — Alex Baum, the father of modern LA bicycling, dies at age 92

Alex Baum in 2006; photo from the Jewish Journal

Alex Baum in 2006; photo from the Jewish Journal

The first time I attended a meeting of the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee, I sat silently in the auditorium at the old Parker Center, where the BAC used to meet.

Afterwards, a small man approached me unsteadily, trembling with age, but without hesitation. And asked why I was there.

It wasn’t a challenge, as the phrase so often is.

It was an offer to help with whatever problems had led me to attend.

When I explained I just there to observe the committee, he invited me to come back again. And said to to let him know if there was anything they could help me with.

Then he turned and walked away on those unsteady legs.

And with that, I had just met Alex Baum. The founder of the BAC and the father of modern bike advocacy in the City of Angels, who passed away early Sunday at the age of 92.

That alone would be enough of a resume to cement anyone’s legacy. But for Baum, it’s little more than a footnote in a truly extraordinary life.

A native of German-speaking Lorraine, France, he was in his late teens when the Nazis overran the country. Rather than flee, the young Jewish man chose to fight, joining the French resistance along with his brother.

An article in the Jewish Journal quotes him as saying “We fought the Germans any possible way we could.”

Captured while attempting to guide an English pilot to safety, Baum somehow managed to hide his heritage, and spent the next two-and-a-half years as a political prisoner in Nazi concentration camps.

According to the LADOT Bike Blog, he spent his time in confinement building — and sabotaging — the V2 rockets Hitler lobbed across the English Channel.

After the war, he rebounded to play soccer, first for the French national team, then as a center-forward for a Chicago semipro team before moving to Los Angeles in 1960 and establishing a successful business.

Yet it’s his lifelong love of bicycling that led him to leave a lasting footprint on the city, and on the sport itself at the highest levels.

In fact, it’s Alex Baum who should be credited with the rise of women’s bike racing, which this year will see professional races at the Tour de France and Spain’s Vuelta a España, as well as four days of racing at the Amgen Tour of California.

Because he was the one who ticked the box that brought women’s road racing to the Olympic Games, with an inaugural race at the ’84 Olympics that saw Americans Connie Carpenter and Rebecca Twigg take gold and silver, respectively. And let girls around the world know they could compete at the highest levels.

In fact, he was instrumental in bringing the games to LA, after serving first as a board member of the United States Cycling Federation — which would later be rebranded as USA Cycling — then later as the first American appointed to the Union Cycliste International, the governing body for international bike racing.

That alone should have been enough for anyone.

But for Baum, it was just a start.

He also gets credit for building velodromes in Encino and Dominguez Hills, and at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. And he was influential in the birth of the Tour of California, according to the LADOT site.

It was also Alex Baum who first approached then-Mayor Tom Bradley about forming a city committee to serve the interests of bicyclists and improve the streets for everyone on two wheels, serving as chairman of the BAC for over 30 years under four successive mayors. And continuing as chairman emeritus of the committee right up to his death.

As leader of the BAC, he can be credited with helping in the development of the 1996 and 2010 bike plans, and leading in the creation of the LA River Bike Path. As well as working towards completion of the path all the way from LA to Long Beach.

In other words, if you ride a bike anywhere in Los Angeles, you owe Baum a round of thanks.

Despite the obvious effects of age, it almost seemed like he’d be here forever, guiding the city forward to a more bike friendly future.

And maybe he will be.

Because his influence will live on right here on the streets of LA as long as any of us ride them.

Word of his death came Sunday afternoon in an email from his longtime friend and associate, LADOT Senior Bicycle Coordinator Michelle Mowery, who said he passed away surrounded by family early that morning.

In some ways, though, we are all his family. And he will be long missed by a city that he changed for the better, yet one that barely knew him.

According to Mowery, his memorial will be held at 1:30 pm this Wednesday at Santa Monica Synagogue at 18th and Broadway. If you plan to attend, you’re asked to RSVP to his daughter at dgardnersm @ aol.com.

Personally, I’d like to see LA’s current mayor and the BAC Baum served for so many years host a public memorial at the bicycle bridge named for him over Los Feliz Blvd.

It would be a fitting chance to say goodbye to one of the true giants of our city, and our time.

Update: David Wolfberg has written a wonderful remembrance of Alex Baum on the BAC’s Facebook page, adding much detail to his time in the French resistance, as well as with the Olympics and LA bike advocacy. It’s definitely worth reading. 

My prayers and deepest sympathy for Alex Baum and all his loved ones.

Thanks to the Jewish Journal and LADOT Bike Blog, whose profiles provided the basis for this piece.

Morning Links: Sign up online for BAC agendas and minutes, and LAPD cracks down on USC cyclists

Maybe LA city government really is becoming more open and accessible under Mayor Garcetti.

For the first time, you can sign up for reports and agendas from a long list of city agencies and committees — including the city’s long-neglected Bicycle Advisory Committee.

You’ll find them listed under the LADOT heading, where you can opt to receive BAC agendas and minutes, as well as other LADOT groups including the Pedestrian Advisory Committee.

And just below, you’ll find reports from the police and fire commissions. Both of which have a lot to say about your ability to ride legally and safely.

Thanks to BAC members David Wolfberg and Glenn Bailey for the heads-up.

……..

The LAPD cracks down on salmon cyclists at USC, calling it a last resort in response to a rising number of bike collisions on and around the campus.

Actually, the last resort appears to be campus officials acknowledging the high level of bike commuting students, and working with city officials to accommodate bike riders so they don’t feel a need to break the law.

There’s a reason UCLA is recognized as a bike-friendly campus. And USC isn’t.

……..

Local

Laemmle Theater president and LACBC board member Greg Laemmle says we need good policies and urban planning, and smart business practices to encourage bicycling and walking in LA County.

A 16-year old LA student transforms his life — and his formerly 250 pound body — by biking to school.

Flying Pigeon’s Richard Risemberg attends a glum Bicycle Plan Implementation meeting, which brightens considerably when he discovers new LADOT head Seleta Reynolds had been listening patiently for the whole meeting. Turns out she stopped by Tuesday’s BAC meeting, too.

Ride to celebrate the new San Gabriel Mountains National Monument, expected to be announced by President Obama on Friday; CORBA offers only conditional support for the designation.

Cyclists are invited to participate in a public workshop on October 22nd to develop a joint bike plan for Agoura Hills, Calabasas, Hidden Hills, Malibu and Westlake Village.

A new two-mile stretch of bike path opens along Coyote Creek in La Mirada.

 

State

Inland riders are gearing up for Sunday’s Temecula Valley Century, with five rides ranging from 6.4 to 101.5 miles. None of which is a bike race, regardless of what the Press Enterprise might say.

Local merchants are on board this time for Salinas’ second ciclavia.

The SF Gate talks with the Sonoma County Gran Fondo cyclist felled by a squirrel through the spokes; he was lucky to get away with a concussion and minor facial fracture. And you don’t want to miss that amazing photo of the squirrel jammed in his wheel; then again, maybe you do. Thanks to Kent D for the second link.

 

National

HTC unveils a periscope shaped cam to compete with GoPro.

A Seattle website explains what happens after your bike is stolen. And it ain’t pretty.

Now that’s more like it. A Texas driver gets 18 years — yes, years — in jail for killing a cyclist while under the influence. He was caught attempting to hide the victim’s body after driving away with his headlights off when the bike rider tumbled into the bed of his truck following the collision.

A Kentucky teenager apologizes for throwing a cup of ice at a cyclist and goes for a ride with his victim; does it matter that a judge ordered him to do it?

There’s a special place in hell for someone who’d shoot a seven-year old Detroit girl out riding her bike; she was collateral damage in a car-to-car shootout.

Bad enough when people drive in the bike lane; worse when they get high and drive down a Michigan bike path.

Bikeyface complains about bike lane bike creeps.

We may have to worry about rabid LA drivers, but New Jersey cyclists have to deal with rabid coyotes; I’m not sure which is worse.

Many cyclists have ridden along the Hudson River, but not many have actually pedaled across it.

The Orlando paper endorses a plan for a continuous 275-mile bike trail from the Atlantic to the Gulf coasts.

 

International

London, Ontario cyclists reject the city’s new bike plan as too little, too late.

A Brit police and crime commissioner says cyclists should be forced to wear numbered plates big enough to be read at a distance so they can be identified and prosecuted when they break the law. After all, that’s worked so well to curb law-breaking by motorists, right?

Despite what the local authorities say, the jerks who stretched a cord across a British roadway at neck height aren’t morons, they’re terrorists attempting to injure or intimidate bicyclists and motorcyclists.

Good thing cycling has cleaned up it’s act. Otherwise, the Astana team could be in trouble after not one, but two riders test positive for EPO.

Tres shock! An Aussie study suggests cyclists break the law because they don’t feel safe on the streets.

 

Finally…

Caught on video: Extreme off-road Lego bike stunts. Yes, Lego. Evidently, they really are out to get us, as a car — a real one — crashes into a Brit bike shop, at least the 10th time it’s happened to the same store.

And a rare condition can give cyclists a third, non-functional testicle — including riders who weren’t born with two.

 

Unconfirmed rumor says Dr. Thompson may be back on the streets soon; LA BAC meets tonight

It’s possible LA’s bicycling Boogey Man could be getting out of jail soon.

If he hasn’t already.

Rumors are swirling that Dr. Christopher Thompson, the road raging driver responsible for the infamous Mandeville Canyon brake check that seriously injured two cyclists, was due to be released from Norco prison yesterday.

I haven’t been able to find confirmation one way or the other yet.

But Thompson is four years into a five year sentence. With good behavior, it would make sense that he would be due for release soon.

The question is, should we care?

Yes, he did a horrible thing. But he’s apologized, and he’s done his time.

Maybe it’s time to simply put him in our unpleasant past, and get him get on with his life.

And us with ours.

……….

The LA Bicycle Advisory Committee meets tonight with a long agenda, including discussion of bike lanes on Figueroa Street.

Bicycle Advisory Committee of the City of Los Angeles
Agenda
Tuesday, February 4, 2014, 7:00 p.m.
Hollywood Neighborhood City Hall ‐ Community Room
6501 Fountain Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90028

PLEASE NOTE

  • Public participation in Bicycle Advisory Committee meetings is welcome.
  • This agenda is tentative and may be updated as the meeting date nears.
  • Items may not be considered in the same order as this Agenda.
  • Meetings start promptly at the posted time
  • Sign Language Interpreters, Communication Access Real-Time Transcription, Assistive Listening Devices, or other auxiliary aids and/or services may be provided upon request. To ensure availability, you are advised to make your request at least 72 hours prior to the meeting you wish to attend. Due to difficulties in securing Sign Language Interpreters, five or more business days’ notice is strongly recommended. For additional information, please contact: Shelly del Rosario at LADOT at (213) 972-5980

1. Call to Order – Count for Quorum – Member Sign In
2. Approval of Minutes from December 2013 Meeting
3. Introduction of Committee Members
4. Public Comment: Non Agenda Items: All speakers must submit a City of LA Speaker Card before they will be
recognized. Public Comment is limited to two (2) minutes per speaker.
5. Los Angeles Police Department Report
a. Discussion and possible action re LAPD/LACBC handout re rules of road for bicyclists.
6. LADOT Bikeways Program Report
7. LADOT Bikeways Engineering Report re Bikeways Installed and In Progress
8. Bikeways Subcommittee Report:
a. 20‐Mile Sharrow Package
b. Discussion and possible action re Planning Department request to fund and staff “metrics”
c. Discussion and possible action re LADOT funding and staffing levels
9. Advocacy and Education Subcommittee Report:
10. Planning Subcommittee Report:
a. Discussion and possible action re Year 2 Environmental Review Package
b. Discussion and possible action re Mobility Element Update
11. Planning Department Report:
12. Metro Update
13. Update re status of Bike Plan Year 1 Environmental Package Projects (see next page):
a. Discussion and possible action re North Figueroa Package
14. Update re other projects
a. My Figueroa
b. Hyperion/Glendale Blvd Bridge:
c. Signage on LA River bike path
15. Involvement with Other City Departments:
a. City Attorney
b. Recreation and Parks
c. Public Works‐Bureau of Engineering
d. Public Works‐Street Services
16. Upcoming Events/Activities:
17. Officer Reports – Chairman – Vice Chairman
18. Member Reports – Emphasis on Council District Meetings and Projects
19. Adjourn

Next Meeting – April 1, 2014

……….

Boyonabike calls for an end to car-centered culture at Caltrans. The LAPD is increasing bike patrols along the Venice Boardwalk; hopefully they’ll bring a little peace to the bike path, as well. Sweet Ride USA releases a mouth-watering Episode Three featuring Peddler’s Creamery and DK Donuts; they’re featured in this month’s Bicycling. In his new role reporting for Streetsblog, Joe Linton asks if LA bridge builders can reconfigure the Riverside-Figueroa bridge; welcome back to one of LA’s most knowledgeable and influential bike, transportation and river advocates. Pink and daughter take a “strenuous” ride along the beach in Santa Monica; meanwhile, the singing Braxton sisters learn to ride a bike on TV, sort of.

A San Diego cyclist sues over a bad crash caused by a broken sidewalk. An 11-year old Bakersfield boy is killed by a car while riding his bike. Santa Barbara is letting 30-year old bike lanes near a school fade to oblivion in favor of parking. A Fontana cyclist escapes robbers who attempted to form a human barricade on a bike path. Jury deliberations begin for a man charged with attacking a rider on a bike path.

How to improve traffic safety for older adults; something has to be done to get dangerous drivers off the road while allowing safe ones to keep driving. New medical study shows master’s cyclists up to 71-years old maintain muscle mass as well as much younger riders. How to create a pop-up protected bike lane for just $600. New wireless hi-def bike cam released by Shimano, as well as new models by other makers. A man and his bike make beautiful music together. No more Viva Bike Vegas gran fondo in Las Vegas following Interbike this year. Anchorage motor vehicle laws stack the deck against cyclists; same story could be written just about anywhere. Tucson looks to build protected bike lanes; they could beat out LA for the Green Lane Project funding if the My Figueroa project fails to move forward. Going carless with bike and car share in Denver. A Houston area cop teams with Walmart to replace a boy’s stolen bike. St. Louis County votes for Complete Streets, despite protests from some cyclists decrying bike lanes and the “bicycle industrial complex.” A Delaware cyclist is ticketed for riding his bike safely and legally. Fortunately, not many bike riders are found on freeways, as a South Carolina driver is stopped for weaving in and out of traffic at 107 mph, while drunk — and with a open, half-empty gallon bottle of vodka — and no license. Sorry Houma, Louisiana, a shared lane may be many things, but it’s not a bike path. A 21-year old Tampa man faces prison for killing a bike rider while drag racing.

British experts say it will take more and better data to cut rates of bicycling injury and deaths; “Every death through cycling is entirely preventable, with countless lives shattered by the ripple effect of these tragic events.” Bike-hating Top Gear hosts take a ride through the streets on London. After barely surviving a collision with a car, a UK cyclist has to wait to learn if she can have her missing teeth replaced. Nottingham bike lanes are a “waste of cash and unwanted;” except by the people who might ride them, of course. The Tour of Dubai could help counter anti-bike fear-mongering. It’s war out there as Adelaide drivers and cyclists do battle daily on their commutes. It’s legal to cross a double line in Australia to pass a cyclist safely; not so in California, thanks to our veto-pen wielding governor.

Finally, a New Zealand study shows cycling is safer than you think — in fact, a two-hour ride is six times safer than riding a horse, 15 times safer than a day on the slopes and 35-times safer than playing rugby.

Report from an active BAC Bikeways committee, and a long list of pre-holiday bike links

Sometimes pressing issues force me to set aside things I intend to discuss here.

That’s what happened over the last few weeks, as I’ve been meaning to post a link to the minutes of last month’s meeting of the Bikeways Subcommittee of the LA Bicycle Advisory Committee.

As you’ll see, the committee — and the BAC as a whole — is doing great work on some of the most pressing issues facing LA cyclists.

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LADOT’s People St prepares to work with the community to transform the streets of LA. The CEO of DTLA’s Union Rescue Mission rides his way back from a heart attack and kidney transplant. Metro to consider better bike and car parking in North Hollywood. A homeless Rosemead man teams with an off-duty anesthesiologist to save the life of a fallen bike rider; remember that the next time you’re tempted to look down on the tattered guy huddled in a doorway. CLR Effect says pay attention out there after coming on an injured bike rider near a school. A Santa Monica letter writer complains about a lack of enforcement against bike riders, but neglects to consider all those scofflaw motorists. The Acorn asks that the sheriff’s deputy who killed cyclist Milton Olin, a 16-year veteran, be investigated for distracted driving.

Twenty Riverside students get new bikes. Dates are set for next April’s 30th Redland’s Bicycle Classic. A Big Bear bicycling group invests $35,000 in local bike projects. Huntington Beach’s new mayor has supported bike paths since he was eight years old; let’s hope he still does. San Diego city council approves a $312 million bike plan. A San Diego summit considers how to wean the North County area off auto-dependency. San Diego State students are threatened with having their bikes impounded if they don’t use the new bike racks. The Borrego Springs Century rolls this weekend. Now that’s more like it, as a Santa Barbara driver faces murder charge for a drunken hit-and-run after his victim dies. A Bakersfield driver faces a vehicular manslaughter charge for killing a cyclist while legally using a hands-free device. Small town San Luis Obispo ranks as the 7th most dangerous city for California cyclists. A former Google engineer wants to put turn signals on your hands. How to use your bike for holiday shopping. Ride 2 Recovery brings a greater sense of normalcy for a wounded Stockton Iraq war vet.

Cyclists send a message to motorists in a nice new video; basically, that message is please don’t kill me or someone I love. Physical activity is the new wonder drug. Bike lanes are good for small businesses; someone should tell that to the anti-bike merchants on Westwood and Lankershim. The Bike League is seeking a new Equity Advisory Council member. A tongue-in-cheek look at why you should never try biking to work. NPR looks at efforts to make bike share more accessible. A look at America’s top 10 protected bike lanes; not surprising, Los Angeles — which recently got its first sort-of protected bike lane in the 2nd Street tunnel — doesn’t make the list. Bike Portland examines when it’s legal to ride side-by-side in Oregon; it’s legal here in California, though many some misinformed cops may disagree. Long Beach biking expats The Path Less Pedaled looks at Oregon’s Covered Bridges Scenic Bikeway. Seattle’s new mayor could mean less support for a new bike plan. My hometown, which has a real winter, holds a Winter Bike to Work Day; Los Angeles, which doesn’t, doesn’t. An over-privileged 16-year old Texas boy gets probation for killing four people while driving dunk at three times the legal limit; thanks to Austin Brown for the heads-up. Big hearted Nebraska driver goes bowling after running down a bike rider; no word on what he scored. The family of a fallen Chicago cyclist hopes to crowd source his funeral expenses. Ohio driver fesses up to punching a bike rider in a road rage incident; it helps when the chief prosecutor is a cyclist too. DC Streetsblog asks the Associated Press to nix the term accident in their style book. A different kind of scofflaw cyclist, as a DC rider stencils bike-positive messages on bike lanes. Cranky VA letter writer takes issue with the idea that bike lanes improve livability. Alabama foster kids get 502 new bikes for the holidays.

Trek hopes the Schlecks can bounce back. A BC writer just doesn’t get the concept of sharrows; problem is, he’s not far off. As expected, Specialized kisses and makes up with the Canadian bike shop they tried to run out of business; that means they’re not overly litigious bullies anymore, right? A Canadian cyclist videos his own face plant after a failed stunt, leading to a breakthrough in facial surgery. Avid cyclists are going extinct, and maybe that’s a good thing. UK study show’s only a tiny fraction of cycling collisions resulted from bad behavior by the bike rider. Look, no matter what they did to piss you off, don’t punch out drivers — or moms in front of their kids. Newly minted Sir Bradley Wiggins is humbled by the honor. The Beeb asks if new technology could make cyclists safer; thanks to Victor Bank for the link. Unconscious Norwegian cyclist is saved when a passing snowplow operator sees the handlebars of his bike poking out from a snow bank. A new Bangkok bike promises to clean the air while you ride; now we only need a few hundred billion of them and enough people to ride ‘em.

Finally, great holiday ad from Jamis bikes, aside from the gratuitous sex object. And don’t try this at home. Or especially not this.

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