Tag Archive for Los Angeles River bike path

Morning Links: How LA became deadly for bicyclists, LA River bike path closed, and 2nd Forsyth Cup tomorrow

Powerful piece in Outside Magazine examining how Los Angeles became the world’s deadliest city for bicyclists.

Mayor Eric Garcetti seemingly addressed street-safety concerns in his annual budget proposal, setting aside a record-high $38 million for his signature traffic program Vision Zero. Now in its third year, the ambitious plan aims to eliminate all road deaths by 2025. “Fatalities are not a tolerable byproduct of transportation,” Garcetti said when he launched Vision Zero in August 2015. “Loss of life and severe injuries resulting from traffic crashes are unacceptable outcomes that we can address.”

April’s rash of hit-and-runs, however, show how the city’s Vision Zero program has gotten off to a rough start. Despite two years of analyzing data and installing small-scale safety measures like curb extensions and high-visibility crosswalks, last year was the deadliest in more than a decade: 245 people died on L.A. streets, nearly double the year before. More than 60 percent were hit and killed while walking or riding a bike—a 5 percent increase from when Vision Zero began.

The story looks at the power of LA city councilmembers to halt traffic safety projects in their districts, and the bikelash from angry drivers that forced the removal of bike lanes in Playa del Rey. As well as cowing councilmembers into canceling planned bike lanes in their districts.

And how Frederick “Woon” Frazier paid the price, killed by a hit-and-run driver on Manchester Blvd where a bike lane was supposed to be stripped, but wasn’t.

The piece also quotes yours truly and other LA bike advocates. But you’ll have to read it to see what we said.

Meanwhile, Bicycling picks up the story we discussed recently that ranked Los Angeles and New York as the nation’s two most dangerous cities for bike riders.

Never mind that they are also the nation’s two most populous cities, with a relatively high rate of bicycling. And would likely rank significantly lower if the study considered bicycling fatalities on a per capita basis.

Photo of Frederick “Woon” Frazier, killed in a hit-and-run on Manchester Blvd, where plans called for a bike lane as part of the Vision Zero High Injury Network.

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The LA River bike path will be closed until 2 pm tomorrow as a result of Wednesday’s thunderstorms.

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The second race in the Wolfpack Hustle 2018 Forsyth Cup takes place tomorrow at the Encino Velodrome. And once again, BikinginLA sponsor Thomas Forsyth will provide free hot dogs and hamburgers until they run out.

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My Figueroa looks at some of the connections the new protected bikeway will make possible.

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Local

A Bogota, Columbia newspaper looks at the spread of the city’s ciclovía to the City of Angels.

LA designers recommend bikes and e-scooters to get around during the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics; one suggests creating a permanent carfree CicLAvia route during the games.

Go Human is hosting a pop-up tomorrowon Glendora Ave in West Covina.

A Santa Clarita public safety campaign tells bike riders and runners to keep their “Heads Up.” Because really, bike riders and runners failing to look up is the primary cause of most crashes, right?

Santa Monica is ready to begin construction on connecting the city’s bike network to the Expo Line.

 

State

Ebikes are currently banned on state and federal trails, though that could change once California issues statewide regulations.

San Clemente commissioners delay a vote to allow ebikes on beach trails, while voting to require bike riders to walk across bridges, and limiting bikes to 6 mph on trails less than 10 feet wide.

California’s famed Highway 1 has re-opened through Big Sur after last year’s mud slide, to the delight of fantasizing bicyclists everywhere.

Uber discovers that San Franciscans would rather rent an ebike than take an Uber.

 

National

A new book by Adonia Lugo says bike advocates need to consider issues of race and class in bicycle planning discussions.

Merriam-Webster defines ten two-wheeled words every cyclist will want to know.

Chinese dockless bikeshare company Ofo is in rapid retreat in North America.

Fast Company takes a look at how much space American cities waste on parking.

A pair of academic librarians are taking three months off to bike across the country visiting libraries from DC to Oregon.

Hawaii became the latest state to adopt a three-foot passing law.

Portland bike riders have been slow to accept the city’s first parking protected bike lane.

Seattle considers adding more protected bike lanes in the downtown area, creating a full network of safe bikeways in the city within the next two years.

This is how you invite bike tourism. Arizona unveils a user-friendly, statewide online bike map, showing local bikeways as well as the 573-mile section of US Bicycle Route 90 through the state.

A member of the Moscow city council — no, the one in Idaho — just finished a 4,300 mile ride across the US following the Trans Am Bike Race route; he’s also the owner of the Hog Heaven Sausage Works.

In a problem bike riders nearly everywhere can relate to, a Chicago TV station took a 30-minute ride through the downtown area and ran into 18 blocked bike lanes.

Boston bikeshare companies say please use a seat cover if you’re going to ride sans culottes and/or au natural.

No surprise here, as NYC, which until recently banned all ebikes, has no plans to allows e-scooters.

Life is cheap in New York, where a truck driver who killed a bike rider in a left cross collision walks with just a $1,088 fine and a measly 75-day license suspension.

Philadelphia is the latest city to embrace human protected bike lanes to call attention to the need for safer infrastructure. Which have yet to make an appearance here in Los Angeles, on either count.

DC bicyclists and pedestrians turn out to protest a recent series of traffic death; as one advocate said, Vision Zero is a radical vision that requires a radical shift in how we do things. Meanwhile, a DC advocacy group says the term has lost its meaning, so just demand streets that don’t kill people.

A Virginia letter writer argues against a lane reduction and adding bike lanes when a street is repaved, calling it one of the safest corridors in the city — even though the city says it has one of the highest rates of KSI (killed or seriously injured) crashes.

Apparently, the US Postal Service is totally okay with their trucks blocking New York bike lanes.

Probably not the best idea to rear-end a police cruiser stopped on the shoulder of a Maryland highway.

 

International

You may be able to plug in your next Bianchi. But who says ebikes have to be heavy?

The stupidest advice for beginning cyclists.

Self recommends 12 international bicycling destinations you’ll want to add to your bike bucket list. I can personally attest to the second one, which travels over new trails through some of the most beautiful country in the US.

A Canadian bike rider was charged after crashing into the back of a truck while using his cellphone.

Toronto’s ambitious plan for new bike lanes is already falling behind, just two years after it was adopted. A feeling we in Los Angeles know all too well.

Road.cc looks at the new bike helmets introduced at the recent Eurobike. And considers the laws regarding bike bells in the UK, after a bizarre debate on the subject in the House of Lords.

London’s Telegraph questions whether you can really get fit riding an ebike. Short answer, yes, as long as it’s a ped-assist bike.

A British letter writer says bike racks may be ugly, but it’s better than having trees cut down by bike thieves after riders lock their bikes to them.

A Brit bike rider says go ahead and buzz him. Which is undoubtedly a minority opinion.

Police in the UK use an undercover officer on a bicycle equipped with cameras and distance sensors to catch drivers violating the country’s 1.5-meter safe passing distance, the equivalent of a five foot law here. We’ve repeatedly asked the LAPD to conduct similar operations, pointing out that distance sensors are now readily available. But no luck so far.

An Oslo study shows 45 minutes of bicycling can help ward off Type 2 diabetes, and ebikes could be key to helping people ride enough to protect their health. Although I put in over ten times that much every week for 30 years, and it didn’t do me a damn bit of good.

Another Oslo study has shown yet again that the health benefits of bicycling cancel out the risks of breathing dirty air.

Four members of a Saudi women’s bike team have become the first from that country to participate in the Global Biking Initiative (GBI) European tour.

 

Competitive Cycling

Yes, Team Sky holds the yellow jersey in the Tour de France. But if you haven’t been following the race, it’s probably not who you think.

Mark Cavendish vows to come back next year after missing the time cut on Wednesday’s stage, Marcel Kittel also missed the cut.

Columbian cyclist Rigoberto Uran withdrew after crashing on the cobbles during Sunday’s stage.

Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali, who finished fourth last year, is also out after falling as a result of a crash between police motos; remarkably, he finished just 13 seconds behind the winner on the legendary Alpe d’Huez despite riding with a fractured vertebrae.

World champ Peter Sagan and his wife are getting divorced, less than four years after their very splashy marriage.

Malaysian cycling team had all ten of their bikes stolen from an Edmonton, Canada velodrome where they were training; kindhearted locals have pitched in to loan them replacements.

 

Finally…

Screw the race, what we really need is a better video game. Just stay the elk out of the forest for a few months, already.

And if you’re going to ride salmon on the freeway, at least wear a helmet. And some clothes.

 

Morning Links: Bike-related SoCal shootings, bad MyFig bike signals, and drunken victim blaming by PBS

It’s been a violent few days in Southern California.

Tragic story from Santa Ana, where a woman collecting recyclables was barely able to get off her bike in time before a truck slammed into it early yesterday. Only to discover the driver was already dead or dying from a gunshot wound; police are unsure where or how he got shot.

And man was shot as he and a woman were riding their bicycles on the LA River bike path in Long Beach on Wednesday. Although given the date, it’s possible it could have been caused by some idiot firing a gun into the air to celebrate the 4th.

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Michael MacDonald, aka topomodesto, offers a scathing indictment of the bike traffic signals on the new MyFigueroa bike lanes.

https://twitter.com/topomodesto/status/1014881629397921792

The response from LADOT simply says they’re still fine-tuning the street.

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Today’s must-read is a powerful op-ed from a pair of Toronto bicyclists and political science professors, who say it’s anarchy on the streets for the city’s cyclists.

An affluent city in which the act of riding a bike means our parents, partners, children and friends can die violent deaths is a travesty. A police force that won’t protect us should be ashamed. A legal system that won’t punish offenders is a farce. City councillors who won’t allocate funds to protect lives should be pushed out of office.

Until the city asserts its proper authority, the act of cycling in Toronto will remain a nasty, brutish and deadly experience.

Much of which applies to Los Angeles, as well. From a legal system that too often lets deadly drivers off with a slap on the wrist — if they get charged at all — to councilmembers who don’t just refuse to fund projects, but actually halt already funded safety projects.

And who should be pushed out here as well if they refuse to protect the lives and safety of their constituents, and anyone else who uses the streets of this city.

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On the other hand, PBS NewsHour offers an incredibly wrong-headed report blaming drunk pedestrians for the rise in pedestrian deaths.

Not distracted drivers. Or even poorly designed SUVs.

A third of pedestrians killed in crashes in 2016 were over the legal limit, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That’s nearly 2,000 people — up more than 300 since 2014.

“Those numbers are pretty shocking,” said Jonathan Adkins, executive director of the Governors Highway Safety Association, which represents state highway safety offices. “We think this is a big problem.”

Sure.

Except there is no legal limit for walking, because unlike operating a deadly two-ton machine, drinking doesn’t significantly impair moving your feet unless you get stumbling, falling down drunk.

Never mind that the report doesn’t specify how many of those intoxicated pedestrians were actually at fault, or did anything to contribute to their demise other than simply being there.

And it doesn’t mention how many of those deaths were actually caused by a lack of safe sidewalks and crosswalks that may have forced victims out into the street. Other than to suggest you should walk a quarter mile in each direction to get to a safe crossing rather than simply run across the street, like most people would do, drunk or sober.

Let alone the simple fact that if one-third of the victims were under the influence, that means the overwhelming majority weren’t.

We could spend hours picking this one apart.

But let’s just say this story is an incredible, stinking example victim-blaming windshield bias.

And PBS should be ashamed of it.

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Local

KPCC says LeBron could use the new MyFigueroa bike lane to get to Staples Center, except it’s full of parked cars.

 

State

A San Diego TV station explains how the city’s new bike boxes improve safety for bicyclists.

Now living in Los Gatos, mountain biking legend Juliana Furtado speaks out about the risk of suicide and depression, saying she’s lucky to have survived the disease that took the lives of her mother and older sister.

San Francisco-based Spin is bailing on bikes, and getting onboard the dockless e-scooter craze.

A Sonoma County Facebook group is teaming together to help recover stolen bicycles.

Sad news from Santa Rosa, where a man was killed in a crash with two hit-and-run drivers while riding his bike to see his kids; one of the drivers was arrested four miles away.

 

National

That car exhaust you suck in when you ride might be putting you at greater risk for diabetes. It’s frightening to think I might not have inherited my adult-onset diabetes from my mother after all, but gotten it from 30 plus years of riding in traffic instead.

A writer for Forbes says if you want to stay safe on the streets, you need to get radar taillight. Meanwhile, SoCal pro cyclist Coryn Rivera lists the gear she says you need to stay safe on a road bike.

A local magazine says sprawling, auto-centric Dallas could become a bike city. And if Big D can do it, so can Los Angeles.

A Detroit man is spending his weekends on his bike to photograph the city’s street art.

A Michigan court ordered a new trial over a $1 million judgement in the death of a six-year old boy who was killed riding his bike on a fairgrounds trail, after the fairgrounds argued the boy’s father was to blame for letting him ride there.

An Indiana bike rider was hit by a car, which apparently didn’t have a driver. And despite the statements from a bystander blaming the victim for not having a helmet — and who doesn’t think bikes belong on the road — a witness to the crash says a helmet wouldn’t have kept him from getting run down from behind. Thanks to Melissa McCurley for the heads-up.

Instead of making bridges safe for bike riders — or even legal, for that matter — Newport RI is now offering to drive them across the bridges on shuttle buses.

A Buffalo NY bike rider who refers to himself in the second person does the highly flawed math, and says streets aren’t wide enough for bike lanes.

New York is making plans to fix a scary gap in the city’s bike network. Meanwhile, most of LA’s bike network is a scary gap.

Philly bicyclists demand that drivers stop parking in bike lanes. Meanwhile, an op-ed says the way to build a better Philadelphia is to design it for everyone from 8 to 80.

Baton Rouge LA bike advocates say their best hope for changing the city’s bike unfriendly nature died along with a city councilmember who was run down from behind while riding his bike last week.

 

International

Horrifying video from Vancouver, where a bike rider gets right hooked by a massive gas tanker truck, which proceeds to run over her bicycle just as she jumps to safety.

Great advice for motorists from a Yukon columnist, who says drivers are responsible for 90% of crashes with bicyclists.

Good advice from the CBC in Winnipeg on how to avoid having your bike stolen. And how to avoid buying a hot one.

Guardian readers recommend ten European trips to add to your bike bucket list.

A UK writer ranks every type of bike rider from worst to least worst, saying there’s no such thing as an actively good cyclist. Even though she professes to write from the perspective of one.

 

Competitive Cycling

American Tejay van Garderen won’t be competing to win the Tour de France; instead he’ll be riding in support of team leader Richie Porte.

SB Nation says the Tour de France is a parade of dreams, and every moment of the tour is the highlight of someone’s life.

A new biography of America’s last remaining Tour de France winner credits Berkeley with spawning the modern bicycle-racing boom.

Seven TdF teams will be sucking down their $33 a bottle ketones sports drinks during this year’s race.

A group of women cyclists are riding the full Tour de France route one day ahead of the men competing in the race, while still contending with traffic and other inconveniences. But sure, let’s go ahead and pretend women can’t handle long stage races or difficult courses.

Good profile from Peter Flax, who says world road champ Peter Sagan is an enigma wrapped in rainbow stripes.

This is what happens to cyclists with questionable test results who don’t have Chris Froome’s money or Team Sky’s lawyers.

Now you, too, can own your very own Tour de France bike for a mere twelve grand.

The 805 Thousand Oaks Grand Prix rolls this weekend.

 

Finally…

Oh sure, anyone can ride around the world on two wheels. Actually, Khloe Kardashian doesn’t look a bit like she’s competing in the Tour de France, or any other bike race.

And no need to what until you stop, just grill your food while you ride.

Morning Links: LA raises speed limits, Vision Zero holds course, and LA River Bike Path reopens in Long Beach

One quick note. Come back after 11:00 this morning for a guest post from Derrick Paul about the planned Vision Zero lane reduction and complete street project on Temple Street. 

And why it hasn’t happened.

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Los Angeles will be raising speed limits on nearly 100 miles of streets to comply with California’s deadly 85th Percentile Law, which allows drivers to set speed limits by applying their foot to the gas pedal.

Meanwhile, speed limits will decrease somewhat on a little more than 52 miles of streets.

The tradeoff is that police will now be able to use radar to enforce speeds, which they had been banned from doing on nearly 80% of LA streets.

Under the terms of the law, police can’t use radar to enforce the speed limit if a street hasn’t had a speed survey within the last seven years.

Once the survey is conducted, the speed limit must be set at the speed driven by the 15th fastest motorist driving unimpeded in non-rush hour traffic, although the city does have the option to round down slightly.

So in order to make our streets safer, we have to make them faster and more dangerous.

Or just repeal a stupid, outdated and deadly law.

Correction: In my haste last night, I mistakenly wrote that the 85th Percentile Law was based on the average speed of 85% of motorists, ignoring my gut feeling that I was wrong, but too tired to stop and look it up.

And I was right. That I was wrong, that is. 

The following email from Casey Kerrigan clarifies this complicated law better than any other explanation I’ve seen. 

When doing the speed survey the speed limit is based on the 85 percentile not on the average speed of 85% of the cars surveyed.  Note that speed surveys are conduced under the optimal conditions to speed, ie during the day, at a non rush hour time and only the speed of free flowing cars are measures. Free flowing are cars with no traffic ahead of them for at least 5 seconds on a straightaway and unmarked cars are used to house the speed measurement equipment.
This is from the Caltrans guidelines for how to set speed limits which you can find here.
This paragraph is taken from the Caltrans guidelines linked above on page 36.

3.2.6 Calculating 85th Percentile Speed

If 100 vehicle speeds are plotted, the 85th percentile speed is determined by looking at the speed of the 15th vehicle down from the top speed. Fifteen percent of the vehicles are travelling faster than this speed, and eighty five percent are travelling at or below this speed. If less than 100 vehicles are counted, the 85th percentile speed must be determined by calculating 85 percent of the number of vehicles counted and determining the vehicles’ 85th percentile speed. For example if 70 vehicles were counted, 0.85 x 70 = 59.5. The speed of vehicle 60 represents the 85th percentile. Examples are shown in Appendix A on the Speed Zone Survey Sheet examples.

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Speaking of which, Vision Zero Los Angeles has released their 2018 Action Plan & Progress Report.

The city plans to remain on course with the program, despite a sharp jump in pedestrian deaths, and badly missing Mayor Eric Garcetti’s goal of a 20% reduction in traffic fatalities in 2017.

Of course, that was overly ambitious, since the program is just now gaining its footing and getting its first real funding.

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The LA River Bike Path has reopened in Long Beach, where it had been closed for construction work, now that a large construction crane has been removed.

However, work vehicles and flaggers will remain on the path, and riders may be required to slow down or walk their bikes through the construction zone.

Thanks to Long Beach Mobility and Healthy Living Programs Officers Michelle Mowery for the heads-up.

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Rent-a-cops driving on a Chicago bike path lose it when a bike rider complains that they don’t belong on the path. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the link.

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Local

The victim’s missing head was finally found in an LA multi-modal murder.

A UCLA letter writer says scofflaw Bird scooter users are no worse than bike riders, who he can’t recall ever having seen “obey the traffic laws to the letter.” Unlike pedestrians and motorists, who evidently always obey the letter of the law in his eyes.

CiclaValley imagines what a re-imagined, bike-friendly Ventura Blvd could be.

The Pasadena Star News looks at the proposal to reconfigure Orange Grove Blvd into a complete street that welcomes everyone.

 

State

Seven proposed U.S. Bicycle Routes could soon be coming to, and through, California.

Encinitas-based cruiser bike-maker Electra Bicycle Company turns 25.

Cycling Without Age comes to Merced.

A pair of dueling Op-Eds in the Sacramento Bee say a bill to allow mountain bikes in wilderness areas would be good for the backcountry, while another calls it a Trojan horse that would put wheels over wilderness.

 

National

Bike Snob says enough with the helmet shaming, already.

Streetsblog says American cities aren’t making much progress on Vision Zero, except for New York and San Francisco. Although for some reason, they aren’t tracking Los Angeles on their chart.

A Seattle-area man had his bike stolen after he was hit on the head with a pipe. No word on whether he was wearing a helmet, which might have helped. Or not.

Washington is the latest state to approve an ebike classification bill based on the one pioneered in California.

Great idea, as a Washington bike school teams with a woodworking school to teach everything from wrenching to wood frame and wheel building.

Evidently, LA drivers aren’t the only ones who complain about removing traffic lanes from massive streets. Tempe AZ will restripe a roadway to remove bollards protecting a bike lane and add back a third traffic lane in response to motorist complaints.

You’ve got to be kidding. Just days after the Utah house approved an Idaho stop law, a bill that would allow drivers to also treat red lights as stop signs passed a legislative committee. After all, what difference could there possibly be between someone on a 15-pound bike and someone wrapped in two tons of high-speed glass and steel? I mean, other than the bodies the latter would likely leave behind?

Plans for a new bridge on I-10 in Mobile, Alabama will be required to include options for bicycle and pedestrian pathways.

 

International

Cycling Tips offers advice on how to use music to get the best out of your rides. They probably don’t mean singing Hank Williams out loud while you ride, as someone who looks a lot like me may or may not have done on occasion.

Toronto rejects a staff recommendation to remove lanes from a major street, and keep it six lanes and dangerous instead.

Caught on video: British police use bike cam video to prosecute a 50 mph punishment pass, resulting in the equivalent of a $365 fine. A much better punishment would be to make the driver stand in the roadway while someone else does it to him.

The Irish government will introduce a safe passing law mandating that drivers pass bicyclists with the rough equivalent of three feet on roads with a speed limit below 31 mph, and five feet above that.

Eat and bike your way across Italy with Top Chef contestants.

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war bikes is all too real, as Aussie bicyclists find thumbtacks spread across at least four popular riding routes. Far from a harmless prank, something like that can cause serious injuries — or worse — if a flat causes a rider to fall. And should be prosecuted as such.

The government of Queensland, Australia, has introduced a presumed liability bill, which would presume that the operator of the more dangerous vehicle has a greater responsibility to avoid crashes, and would be considered at fault in a collision; the head of the local auto club calls it a divisive bill that pits motorists against cyclists. Actually, motorists have done that themselves for decades.

 

Finally…

Your WiFi depends on a Hollywood bombshell who escaped Nazis and an unhappy marriage on a bicycle. It’s golf balls over bikes on the beach.

And can a serial burglar really be a bad guy if he rides a bike and leaves the homes neat and tidy?

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Morning Links: LA Times says stop killing pedestrians, and Metro plans LA River bike path through DTLA

A writer for the LA Times says it’s time to stop killing pedestrians, and calls on the city to invest in smart infrastructure — including road diets — to “protect motorists, cyclists and pedestrians from each other and from themselves.”

Which is exactly what Vision Zero is supposed to be about.

But so far, isn’t.

At least not in Los Angeles.

Thanks to Stanley E. Goldich for the heads-up.

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Metro unveils plans to extend the LA River bike path eight miles through DTLA between Elysian Valley and Vernon.

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LA County will host a community meeting on December 5th to discuss the proposed Complete Streets project for Rosemead Blvd.

The County of Los Angeles is hosting a community meeting for the Rosemead Boulevard Complete Streets Improvement (CSI) Project – Phase I. Stop by any time during the community meeting on December 5 to learn about the proposed complete street enhancements, share your ideas on a vision for Rosemead Bl and talk to Project team members. Spanish interpreters will be available.

  • Tuesday, December 5, 2017 – 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., Pico Rivera Municipal Golf Course, 3260 Fairway Dr., Pico Rivera, CA 90660

For more information, contact Martin Reyes, Principal Civil Engineering Assistant, at 844-588-8877. Please visit the webpage for more information at www.dpw.lacounty.gov/go/rosemeadCS.

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As we’ve noted before, the war on cars is a myth. But the war on bikes is all too real.

A San Bernardino driver allegedly used his car to murder a bike-riding acquaintance.

A British driver is charged with slapping a bike rider, then driving up on the sidewalk and confronting him again.

French pro cyclist Yoann Offredo was fined the equivalent of $833 for an altercation with a road raging driver and her passenger, even though he claimed he was just defending himself; they were fined, as well.

A road raging New Zealand driver jumped a curb and drove onto a sidewalk to run down a bike rider, then got out of his car and told the victim his broken leg serves him right; police arrested the driver thanks to the victim’s photo of his license plate.

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Then again, sometimes bike riders are the bad guys.

A Fresno bike rider was caught on video stealing from a donation box.

A road raging San Francisco bicyclist was arrested for allegedly boarding a bus to attack the driver.

And a Wisconsin man is facing charges for a sexual assault spree while riding his bike.

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Don’t make the Corgi beg. Your donation will help keep this site online, and keep her in kibble.

This is day five of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive. Your support helps keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

You can donate with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

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Local

An allegedly drunk driver in North Hills was arrested after plowing into six parked cars and killing a mother as she carried her infant son. Once again, authorities managed to keep a dangerous driver with a previous DUI conviction on the roads until he killed someone.

A Mar Vista tattoo artist says the Venice Blvd Great Streets project has caused a drop-off in business, and forced him to ride his bike to work because there’s never any parking. Or as the great Yogi Berra once said, “Nobody goes there anymore; it’s too crowded.”

A former South Pasadena public works commissioner says it doesn’t matter if a road diet and bike lanes are feasible on Monterey Road, because the public won’t stand for it. Sadly, given the toxic atmosphere in the LA area these days, he’s probably right.

Pasadena plans to install new bike racks in Brookside Park.

Pasadena considers alternatives to the most likely cancelled 710 Freeway extension, including building bike lanes to help mitigate traffic.

 

State

California regulators finally released updated CEQA rules, which will no longer require developers and planners to consider a proposed project’s effects on traffic congestion. Which should make it much easier to build bike lanes by removing a frequent tool used by opponents. That was the basis for one of the lawsuits filed against the Vista del Mar lane reduction, which helped force the removal of the project; hopefully there will be a different result next time.

A San Diego talk radio host has started a petition to repeal California’s recent gas tax hike intended to repair the state’s broken roads. Anyone who signs it should be permanently prohibited from complaining about traffic or bad streets.

 

National

Fast Company considers what it will take to get more women on bicycles.

Bicycling looks at the best bags for bike commuters.

Chicago is working to separate bicyclists and pedestrians along the entire 18-mile length of the popular Lakefront Trail.

People playing Pokémon Go while driving caused two deaths and up to $25 million in damages in one Indiana county alone last year.

New York could be the next city to hop on the dockless bikeshare bandwagon. Unless Houston beats them to it.

A witness says a New York driver ran a red light at a high rate of speed before fatally plowing into a 14-year bike delivery boy. So naturally, the NYPD will give the driver a pass.

Life is cheap in the Big Apple, where an allegedly stoned driver walks without a single day behind bars after pleading guilty to vehicular manslaughter in the death of a bike rider.

 

International

Thieves stole 27 test bikes, as well as high-end wheels, worth the equivalent of nearly $200,000 from British bike magazine Cycling Weekly; the gear was on hand to be photographed for the magazine’s Editor’s Choice awards. Speaking of the magazine, it was included in the $2.8 billion sale of Time Magazine and other publications to a company partially financed by the conservative Koch brothers.

An English university paper offers seven bike safety tips for students, only three of which actually have anything to do with safety. And apparently they couldn’t come up with a picture of a bike helmet.

A British bicyclist describes a crash last week where a driver plowed into him and three other cyclists, including his wife, as they rode single file; fortunately, none were seriously injured.

An English woman is riding around New Zealand on a DIY bamboo bike to spread an anti-plastic message.

The Guardian writes about the challenges of riding in the winter and how to overcome them. Although Britain’s Cyclist Magazine offers more practical advice for riding in wet weather, much of which even applies here in usually sunny SoCal.

Iran faces the challenge of getting women off bikes, not on them, as the country’s supreme leader issues a fatwa prohibiting women from riding bicycles in public, or in the presence of strangers or non-family members.

Aussie researchers are shocked! shocked! to discover people on bicycles actually ride in the traffic lanes on regular streets.

 

Competitive Cycling

Everything you always wanted to know about the Tour de France, but were afraid to ask.

The board of the Polish cycling federation has been asked to resign over charges that cyclists and staff members had been drugged, raped and molested by a high-ranking official.

 

Finally…

Yes, cycling has benefits for fitness, even if they can’t seem to decide which kind they’re talking about. Evidently, you can have satisfying sex with your bike.

And maybe it’s not the best idea to jump from a moving bicycle onto an ATV to make a bust.

Or try to, anyway.

 

Morning Links: Trade your bike or bag at Timbuk2, O’Farrell endorses Bray-Ali, and Montana bike tax an unfunny joke

Here’s your chance to get a new bike or bike bag and support a good cause at the same time, as Timbuk2 and Pure Cycles host a special trade-in event this weekend at the Timbuk2 store on Abbott Kinney in Venice.

During store hours, visitors will have the chance to bring in any worn bag or bike in exchange for a 30% off discount on any Timbuk2 product or Pure Cycles Bike. On top of that, all donated items will go to Bikerowave, a Los Angeles-based non-profit that will be on-site to discuss with donators on how their contributions will help the community of Los Angeles.

………

Big news in the CD1 race, as 13th District Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell has endorsed challenger Joe Bray-Ali over incumbent Gil Cedillo. According to the LA Times,

“Joe Bray-Ali understands the issues facing Los Angeles and demonstrates a sense of urgency in addressing the affordable housing crises, safety in our neighborhoods, and responsiveness to constituent needs,” O’Farrell said in a prepared statement. “His positive grassroots campaign has motivated more people to participate in the democratic process at the local level and become engaged in the pressing issues that affect Angelenos. This city faces daunting challenges and we need someone like Joe to bring a fresh perspective, new ideas, and an open mind to decision making for our city.”

It’s almost unheard of for a sitting councilmember to endorse a challenger, especially one in the adjoining district.

Although, as several people reminded me today, Cedillo endorsed termed-out county Supervisor Gloria Molina over Jose Huizar just two years ago. In other words, LA’s most anti-bike councilmember was opposing one of the city’s best in the district next door.

It will be interesting to see if Huizar returns the favor.

………

The City of Vernon wants your input on filling a major gap in the LA River bike path through the city.

And Metro wants your input on three proposed Long Beach bike paths within the I-710 corridor.

………

It turns out that proposal to charge a $25 fee for out-of-state bike riders using Montana roadways was just a very big, and very bad, April Fools joke.

I’m glad they think it was funny, even though it brought an incredible amount of bad publicity to the state, and caused bike riders around the world to rethink their plans to visit there.

………

More remembrances of the late great Steve Tilford, who was killed in a Utah car crash early Wednesday morning:

Meanwhile, VeloNews offers a guide to the cobbles of this weekend’s Paris – Roubaix. And Cycling Weekly says you don’t need a rule book for cycling, because you should just know all this stuff already.

………

Local

Horrible news from Firestone Park in unincorporated South LA County, where the occupants of a car got out and swarmed a man on a bike before stabbing him several times; he died at a nearby hospital.

Former Glendale state Assembly Member Mike Gatto is one of us, penning a great Op-Ed in the Times about the carfree lifestyle he’s maintained since 2012.

Los Angeles Magazine’s Neal Broverman calls out four LA area streets in desperate need of a pedestrian-friendly makeover. What’s good for pedestrians is usually good for bike riders, too.

Metro is now offering discounted Metro Bike memberships to businesses to encourage their employees to use the bikeshare service, in hopes of doubling its ridership rates by the end of next year.

Bike SGV takes issue with a recent story that blamed a Glendale bike rider for a crash.

We already knew chef Gordon Ramsay was one of us, getting up at 4 am every Sunday to put in 112 miles on his bike.

 

State

Calbike still has concerns following the passage of the state transportation bill that would double spending on active transportation projects, while significantly boosting funding for public transportation.

Streetsblog looks back favorably on last weekend’s successful Garden Grove open streets event.

San Diego’s Campagnolo GranFondo rolls this Sunday.

There’s something seriously wrong when a bike path becomes the most divisive issue in a community, as the proposed and long argued CV Link through the Coachella Valley appears to have become.

A Santa Barbara man is recovering from serious injuries after his bike was hit head-on while descending the famed Gibralter climb.

Bakersfield police recommend DUI and hit-and-run charges against a member of a prominent local family in the death of a bike rider earlier this year, even though he could have been charged with second degree murder due to a pervious DUI conviction.

A San Luis Obispo elementary school has been named the most bike friendly school in the US by the League of American Bicyclists.

 

National

While the rest of the country envies bike friendly Portland, Portland bicyclists push for more safety improvements.

Las Vegas police are looking for a suspect who rode his bicycle up to man outside a liquor store and shot him twice in the chest before riding away.

Colorado becomes the fourth state to pass a law classifying ebikes used on the roadways; California led the way by creating three classes of ebikes, based on their maximum speed, that took effect in 2016.

Family members have filed suit against the Ohio man accused of murdering a 20-year old college student after she went for a bike ride.

Arkansas rejects a bill that would have allowed children to play outside — and ride their bikes — without the supervision of a parent or guardian. Thanks to Ed Ryder for the heads-up.

Shreveport LA promises cyclists they’re getting a real bike plan, but gives them sharrows instead.

New Orleans delays consideration of an ordinance that would update existing bike laws, some of which haven’t been changed since the 1950s; the delay is so they can add penalties to the prohibition against drivers harassing bicyclists. Most of the changes make sense, except for a requirement that every bike have a bell; apparently there’s a backlog of Angels in need of wings.

The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition offers to help drivers hack their commutes by taking to bicycles following the collapse of the I-85 freeway through the city.

Former NYDOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan tells an appreciative Charlotte NC audience it’s time the city stopped focusing on cars.

There’s a new world record for the most miles ridden in a single year, as 24-year old Florida resident Amanda Coker shattered the old record of 76,076 with over five weeks left to go, averaging over 288 miles a day on her bike.

 

International

The Cuban cyclist attempting to build the world’s tallest ridable bike with the help of LA’s Ritchie Trimble, builder of the current record holder, has his attempt halted by the police. Literally.

London’s former cycling commissioner is keeping tabs on his successor, and doesn’t seem too happy about the lack of progress.

It only took a London jury 17 minutes to acquit a driver who killed a 70-year old man on a bicycle in Britain’s first crowdfunded private prosecution. So maybe there was a reason why the police declined to file, after all.

A Malaysian newspaper calls for providing safe places for kids to ride their bikes, and emulating a program from a neighboring state that guided teenagers away from illegally modified bikes and onto regular bicycles, while providing the training to become professional cyclists.

 

Finally…

No, seriously. If you’re riding your bike with an outstanding warrant, don’t ride on the damn sidewalk. Seriously, if you’re going to steal a bike, at least know why you did it.

And apparently, a British driver really didn’t want to know his brake light wasn’t working.

Morning Links: CD1 race gets dirtier, bike rider assaulted on LA River path, and fixing streets is Vision Zero, too

As predicted, incumbent CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo is getting down and dirty as he fights to retain his seat in the face of a strong challenge from outsider Joe Bray-Ali.

Today’s attack from the city’s most anti-bike councilmember comes in the form of repeated accusations that Bray-Ali is just a Republican in Democrat clothing. And that he only switched parties to run for office — fighting words in the strongly Democratic and independent district.

Except he isn’t. And didn’t.

Bray-Ali is the first to admit he was, briefly, registered as a Republican several years ago as he searched for his place in the political landscape, before landing in the Democratic party after equally brief stints as a Green and an independent.

And never mind that Los Angeles local elections are supposed to be non-partisan, so whatever the hell party he belongs to shouldn’t matter in the slightest.

More amusing is Cedillo’s claim that he’s running a grassroots campaign.

Which is absurd coming from a career politician who gets the overwhelming majority of his donations from outside the district. And who has been in bed with mega donors like Chevron and Walmart for years, leading to questions whether their donations have influenced his votes.

After Saturday’s bizarre Lyin’ Joe episode, and today’s overblown tweetstorm attacks, it’s starting to look like Gil has been studying at Trump U.

And learning all the wrong lessons about how to conduct a campaign.

………

A bike rider reports he was the victim of an assault on the LA River bike path at the Los Feliz overpass when he was punched by one of two men partially blocking the pathway.

Fortunately, he was able to maintain control of his bike, and didn’t stick around to find out what they wanted.

While incidents like this are relatively rare, it’s a reminder to always remain alert and aware of your surroundings when you ride, especially on bike paths or anywhere else out of direct public view. He did the smart thing by getting out of harms way as quickly as possible before stopping to call the police.

He doesn’t give the date or time of the attack, but it makes me wonder if that’s why I saw a CHP cruiser turn onto the bike path as I passed by on Los Feliz Monday afternoon.

LA bicyclists have long called for regular police patrols on the bike paths in the city and county, to little effect; incidents like this sometimes result in an increase in patrols, which die down after awhile as other hotspots take precedence.

Thanks to Chris Klibowitz for the heads-up.

………

I may not have made myself clear the other day.

While I am a strong believer in the need to fund Vision Zero projects in Los Angeles, and feel that it should take precedence over repaving streets and filling potholes, that doesn’t mean the latter isn’t important, as well.

As yesterday’s tragic news reminded us, bad roads can be an expensive annoyance to people on four wheels. But they can be deadly to those of us on two.

Vision Zero should not attempt to improve safety at the expense of our streets, but in conjunction with repaving efforts to ensure a safe riding, driving and walking environment for everyone. We have to somehow find room in the budget to pay for both.

Because it doesn’t matter whether our streets are dangerous because of aggressive drivers, bad road design or crumbling street surfaces. The results are the same.

And human lives are at stake.

………

This is seriously one of the scariest close passes I’ve ever seen, as a driver for a British market buzzes within inches of a cyclist. But says it’s okay since he didn’t cross into the extremely narrow bike lane.

Just as scary is the response from the company, which was basically “We didn’t hit him, so who cares?”

Thanks to Jon for the link.

………

I’ve never had a lot of heroes.

Willie Mays when I was younger, Bobby Kennedy and Dr. King as I got older, though both were gone before I reached my teens. But there are a lot of people I’ve admired; a few I’ve tried to emulate.

And one of the best and brightest of those was killed in crash early Wednesday morning.

Steve Tilford was everything I wanted to be as a young rider. A passionate cyclist who was among the first wave of American riders to storm Europe and show that we could compete on equal terms with the best names in the sport, he made it all seem effortless, competing on the road and winning in mountain biking and cyclocross.

According to various press reports, Tilford was driving on I-70 just west of the Colorado – Utah border when his van crashed into an overturned semi. He and his passenger were standing outside of the van, injured but okay, when a second semi plowed into the overturned truck, striking Tilford.

He died a few hours later at a hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado.

His passenger, Vincent Davis, was injured, and the driver of the second truck was killed as well.

VeloNews sums up the reaction in the cycling world, while the BMC Racing Team’s Jim Ochowicz remembers him and offers his condolences to Tilford’s partner Trudi Rebsamen, a soigneur with the team.

And Bicycling revives a 1998 profile of Tilford, saying he is why we ride.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I have something in my eye.

 

………

Another of those young riders from the 80s, American cycling great Andy Hampsten, is happy to share his love of cycling with young riders in Sonoma County.

Scientists are trying to take the hell of riding cobbles out of the Hell of the North.

………

Local

The jury’s still out on the 2024 Olympics, but LA will be hosting the 2017 Police & Fire Games.

Sunday marks the return of the Brompton Urban Bike Challenge scavenger hunt in DTLA.

Bike SGV invites you to attend the opening of the Jeff Seymour Family Center on Monday.

Topanga Canyon Blvd will be closed this weekend to repair storm damage and remove that big rock blocking the roadway.

Speaking of big rocks, CiclaValley discovers Big Rock Canyon.

 

State

The OC Breeze estimates that 15,000 people attended Saturday’s Garden Grove open streets event.

San Clemente plans to provide a safer route to an elementary school by improving bike lanes and sidewalks on Avenida del Presidente.

Indio is looking for public input on plans to install sidewalks and bike lanes. That’s easy. Yes. Please.

Sad news from the San Joaquin Valley, as a man was killed riding his bike in Southeast Bakersfield.

A Visalia man is scheduled to spend the next 34 years behind bars for shooting a bike rider from his moving car.

Bay Area bike riders will finally be able to ride halfway across the Bay Bridge on weekdays. Then turn around and ride back, since it will be several years before the bikeway goes all the way across, if then.

A UC Berkeley architecture professor wants you to bike along the big, not-so-beautiful wall already standing on the Mexico border with the US.

Folsom is planning to complete the Johnny Cash Trail near the prison where he recorded the best selling live album of all time.

Chico police bust an ebike thief who broke in from the shop next door to steal a $3,000 bike from a local dealer.

 

National

A writer for City Lab says bike helmet laws do more harm than good, and the idea that they improve overall safety for cyclists isn’t backed up by the evidence.

Someone vandalized over 200 of Portland’s 1,000 bikeshare bikes.

Great read. When a reader asks why bicyclists don’t have to carry insurance, an Oregon columnist responds “don’t be that guy.”

Alaskan fat bike riders are risking their lives by riding through railroad tunnels to get to a near-wilderness area that’s closed for the winter.

Prosecutors offer an undisclosed plea deal to a road raging Arizona driver who allegedly murdered a bike rider earlier this year; he faces up to 25 years if he’s convicted.

Someone walked out with $8,000 worth of bike clothes from a trio of Dallas bike shops.

A bike-riding Florida cop struggles to find answers in the wake of a recent tragedy, saying ultimately we must learn to care about others on the road, and encourage them to care about us.

 

International

Caught on video: A Canadian thief demonstrates just how fast a poorly secured bike can be stolen.

Four of London’s most dangerous intersections are scheduled to get bike and pedestrian friendly improvements. Which is exactly how Vision Zero is supposed to work.

The Guardian asks if London’s cycling czar is tough enough to take on critics and bike-haters. On the other hand, at least they have one, unlike some cities I could name.

Sometimes they do come home. Australian police recover an American man’s bicycle two years after it was stolen from a laundromat.

Designer and cyclist Paul Smith is creating cycling jerseys for a bike race to help raise funds to rebuild a Japanese town devastated by the 2011 tsunami.

Abandoned bikeshare bikes are crowding out humans in a Shenzhen, China park.

 

Finally…

No, popsicle bike is not a thing, but it should be. No, throwing your bike at an ex-friend who owes you money is not the correct way to use it.

And which of these things are you doing wrong in your cycling class?

That’s easy. Not riding a real bicycle outside, to start.

 

Morning Links: LA River bike path reopens, and app-based bikeshare could pose a challenge for Metro

Today’s big news is the reopening of the LA River bike path.

According to the Army Corps of Engineers, the bike path was finally reopened following months of repair and maintenance on the stretch below Griffith Park, after it was closed to install needless flood barricades for the storms that never came last winter.

Now weekday riders can finally stop following that circuitous and bike-unfriendly detour that was put in place to get around the construction work. Or more likely, start riding the path again after finding other routes or modes of transportation for the past several months.

Here’s the link to the Corps LA River page that was included in the above tweet.

………

Another Chinese-style app-based bikeshare system is coming to the US, as San Mateo’s LimeBike has raised over $12 million in venture capital funding. The company says its bikes will rent for $1 for 30 minutes, and can be picked up and left anywhere, rather than at a dock.

That could pose a significant challenge to the more traditional bikeshare programs — if you can call something that only gained significant US acceptance in this decade “traditional.”

Programs like LA’s Metro Bike, which costs nearly three times as much if you don’t have a membership while offering less flexibility, could struggle to compete against cheaper competition that will inevitably arrive within the next few years — at a significant cost to the taxpayers footing the bill.

If Metro Bike, and others like Santa Monica’s Breeze and West Hollywood’s WeHo Pedals, are to succeed, they will have to expand quickly into currently unserved areas, while somehow addressing the issue of affordability.

Because, as the taxi industry has learned the hard way, it’s a lot more convenient to just pick up your phone to find and pay for a ride.

Whether you’re on four wheels. Or soon, two.

………

Local

Los Angeles Magazine offers advice on how to keep ridership surging on the Expo Line, including a call for better pedestrian access. The same could be said for bicycles, as Westside bikeways leading to and from the Expo Line aren’t just bad, they’re virtually nonexistent.

Santa Monica will have four bike valets for the LA Marathon on Sunday; however, three Breeze bikeshare stations will be disabled for the day.

Grab your bike, hop on Metro and hit the bars.

CiclaValley is starting a campaign to bring a former LACBC intern from the Netherlands back to compete in the Amgen Tour of California.

The Street Librarians will hold their monthly ride to restock street libraries on the 26th, while reading selections from the poet Rumi.

 

State

Speaking of app-based bikeshare, San Francisco approves rules for the dock-less systems, which seem more like an attempt to regulate them out of business.

A San Francisco driver faces charges for attempting to flee the scene after hitting a bike rider; fortunately, the victim is expected to recover.

 

National

Bicycling, the magazine, gets it right, as contributors say bicycling, the sport/transportation/activity, is the key to a lifetime of pure, unadulterated joy. Although my personal joy has been adulterated on numerous occasions by angry drivers, bad roads and bees on the beach. Not to mention my own damn carelessness from time to time.

Speaking of Bicycling, after the magazine offered seven reasons why bicycling was better than running, Running, the magazine, responds with a whopping 37 reasons why they think their sport is better.

A writer for a design site says building the new Ikea bike was the worst hour of his life. Besides dental work and real emotional loss, that is.

A new Portland bicycling collective composed of women of color is attempting to crack the city’s overwhelmingly white and male cycling scene. And doing it with a donut ride, which is always a smart move.

WaPo belatedly discovers the glowing Texas bikeway everyone was talking about last month. Or last year, even.

Instant karma strikes hard in Little Rock AR, where a wrong way truck driver fleeing a previous hit-and-run was killed in a collision with a bike rider, who also died in the crash.

Caught on video: A Minnesota driver faces charges after brake checking a bike rider, then threatening to kill him before nearly running over his foot. All for the crime of being in the driver’s way at a red light.

Life is cheap in Michigan, where a judge refuses to reconsider her original sentence of just one year in county jail for a killer drunk driver who was over twice the legal limit when he ran down a bike rider; sentencing guidelines called for a minimum of nearly two and a half years in state prison, with a max of 15 years.

Indiana homeowners — and passing bike riders — have to literally dodge bullets escaping from a nearby gun range.

Courses were unveiled for the US national road cycling championships in Knoxville KY this June.

An Ohio letter writer says it’s unfair to segregate bike riders onto bike paths, because people on bikes have to get to businesses and residences just like anyone else.

New York releases plans to make bicycling safer for commuters looking for an alternative after the L train shuts down for 18 months of repair work.

 

International

A new study shows bicycling really does improve your memory.

A Philippine actor tells fans he’s okay after he was injured in a bicycling crash.

Don’t bother biking to the airport in Bangkok for the next seven months.

 

Finally…

If you don’t want the cops to shoot at you, put a damn light on your bike — and don’t flee when they try to stop you. If you have to pee while you ride, try not to do it in view of the breathless British press.

And why settle for a time trial when you can have a six-legged obstacle course?

Morning Links: High-end bikes stolen in Irvine, escape from a bike-crushing bus, and LA River meeting tomorrow

Irvine bike thieves are caught on a security camera as they make off with a trio of high-end Pinarello bikes.

Keep your eyes open in case they show up for sale somewhere. You can find a full description of the bikes on the East West Bikes Facebook page.

Thanks to Lois for the heads-up.

………

David Wolfberg forwards video of an Indian woman barely escaping in time as a bus driver runs over the bicycle she’s walking — directly in front of a cop.

And soon, an angry mob.

………

Don’t forget tomorrow’s meeting to discuss safety on the LA River bike path in Elysian Valley.

Thanks to Terence Heuston for the reminder.

………

Local

Damien Newton talks about the new bike park under construction in El Monte with David Diaz of Day One and Bike SGV.

 

State

Placentia plans to revitalize the Old Town area by developing Complete Streets through downtown.

San Diego makes the wrong choice, paying $235,000 in damages to an injured cyclist instead of fixing the potholes on Torrey Pines Road that led to her injuries; several other bike riders have filed complaints and lawsuits as result of the same section of roadway.

Opponents and supporters voice their opinions about a planned road diet and protected bike lanes on San Diego’s dangerous Pershing Drive. Doesn’t anyone ever bother to explain that even though a roadway may lose a lane, it usually improves traffic flow — and can actually reduce congestion?

As long as we’re on the subject of San Diego, the San Diego Bicycle Club is hosting its 29th annual Light Up A Life Holiday Toy Ride tomorrow.

Safety improvements are coming to a Hayward freeway interchange, too late for a 26-year old bike rider.

 

National

Bicycle manufacturing is making a comeback in the US, rising to half a million bicycles after bottoming out last year.

The inimitable Elly Blue offers motorists advice on how to safely drive around bicyclists.

The photographer behind the Radavist blog tells the story behind his most striking bike images from this year.

A Portland driver will stay in jail after a judge refused to reduce his bail on a manslaughter charge in the death of a cyclist; he was charged in the death because his SUV was not in safe drivable condition.

A Colorado bicycle trade-in program is looking for bike shops to expand nationwide; submitting just two photos of your bike will get you a firm trade-in valuation at a participating bike shop.

Homeowners in a Texas town complain about new signs for a bicycle boulevard, saying they’re too big and will drive down property values. Never mind that bike boulevards usually increase property values.

Detroit police release video of a bike rider suspected of fatally shooting a police officer.

After originally allowing the state police to investigate the case, the Detroit Police Department has taken over the investigation of collision in which one of their own officers killed a bike rider; naturally, they conclude the victim was at fault.

The new North Star Bicycle Route is designed to carry riders from St. Paul MN to the Canadian border. Just in case you were thinking of leaving.

A Virginia columnist says compassion and forgiveness are wonderful things, but that doesn’t mean a driver who killed a bicyclist shouldn’t be in jail.

A Raleigh NC letter writer thanks a cyclist for giving up his bike, saying people like him shouldn’t have to drive in fear of those damn bike riders, and suggests bicyclists should stick to bike paths so people like him can have the roads to themselves.

 

International

A writer for the Guardian says killer drivers are the real stranger danger, and when distracted drivers kill, they should face up to life in prison.

London’s Bike Project plans to give nearly 1,000 bicycles to refugees seeking asylum as they attempt to rebuild their lives.

A British bike group calls for a change in the law requiring drivers to yield to bicyclists at intersections to avoid the equivalent of a right hook; naturally, a trucking organization says it will cause, rather than prevent, collisions.

A 16-year old British boy was the victim of a brutal strong-arm robbery as he was knocked off his bicycle, beaten with a rubber mallet and threatened with a machete before giving up his bike, cellphone and other belongings.

A UK website says mindfulness can make you a better bike rider.

Bicycling shows a slight decline in the UK, even though more women are active than ever before.

A trio of Rwandan cyclists have been nominated for the best African cyclist of the year, recognizing the rider — or in this case, riders — who contributed most to African cycling.

An Aussie writer notes there is no war between cyclists and drivers, and it just takes a little consideration for everyone to get along.

 

Finally…

It’s not just a bus bike rack, it’s a step ladder naked people. No, you can’t power your house by riding a bike.

If you’re going to ride your bike to steal packages off people’s porches, don’t take just any crappy box. No, literally.

And nothing to do with bikes; just wax royals and sweater-wrapped Corgis.

………

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Morning Links: LA bike path meeting Saturday, bike licensing is a bad idea, and ‘tis the season for giving bikes

If you ride the LA River bike path, make plans to be at a meeting to discuss safety on the popular shared-use pathway this Saturday.

la-river-meeting

There have been calls ban bikes or force riders to dismount from the pathway in Elysian Valley after a woman was critically injured in a collision with a bicyclist. Although it should be noted that the rider did remain at the scene and try to help.

The people opposed to bicycles will undoubtedly be out in force, so it’s vital that the other side be heard, as well.

Meanwhile, there will be meetings tomorrow and the following Tuesday to discuss extending the pathway into the San Fernando Valley.

Welcome to Day 7 of the 2nd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive! Donate today, and help keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

It’s Week Two of the 2nd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive! Donate today, and keep Southern California’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

………

Returning to the bike licensing discussion we had last week, a Canadian website says licensing bikes is just a bad idea.

The article correctly points out that the purpose of licensing, whether it’s drivers or businesses, is to regulate them, not raise revenue — despite licensing proponents claims that bike riders need to pay for the lanes we use.

It also makes the point that the cost of licensing bikes, and/or riders, would outweigh any revenue it might raise.

And that it takes 810,000 people riding bicycles to do as much damage to the streets as one person driving an SUV.

So maybe it’s not the bicycles that should be regulated off the roads.

………

That image of Shaq and Amanda Sykes on a tandem bike that circulated last week came from an American Express small business ad, filmed in part at a Berkeley bike shop.

……….

‘Tis the season of giving.

Dublin CA high school students partner with the local Rotary Club to build bicycles for needy children.

The Lodi Rotary Club donates 100 bicycles for underprivileged children.

A Chattanooga church is hosting a 36-hour holiday bike drive to get bikes for economically disadvantaged children.

Volunteers in Tampa FL build nearly 800 bicycles to donate to underprivileged kids.

………

Pro cycling’s top level WorldTour is headed back to China, courtesy of the world’s richest man. Although some people are complaining that it’s not clear what the WorldTour is anymore.

And yes, even para-cyclists dope.

But no, really, the doping era is over, right?

………

Local

A community meeting will be held this Thursday to discuss the proposed Rail-to-River shared pathway, as a route through Huntington Park and Bell emerges as the favorite.

LACBC Executive Director Tamika Butler will host a meeting to discuss bike advocacy in Northeast LA on Thursday, including the status of the long-delayed road diet and bike lanes on North Figueroa.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton calls out NIMBYs for opposing reduced parking requirements for granny flats, including replacing car parking with bike parking.

A bicyclist in his 20s was critically injured in a collision with a motorcyclist near the entrance to Granada Park in Alhambra Saturday afternoon.

The Canyon News looks at this past weekend’s Electric Bike Expo in Santa Monica.

 

State

The keyboardist for the band Faith No More has written a new opera about the annual San Francisco to Los Angeles AIDS ride.

San Diego begins work on a 2.25-mile stretch of what will eventually be a 24-mile loop around the San Diego Bay.

Sad news from Cayucos, as a 47-year old San Luis Obispo man was killed when a driver crossed double yellow lines to pass another vehicle, and hit his bicycle head-on; oddly, no arrest has been made despite the illegal pass.

San Franciscans are divided on plan to remove a traffic lane on two streets in the city’s panhandle to install protected bike lanes.

Police are looking for the driver who ran down a San Francisco cyclist and left her lying in the street last week; fortunately, she’s recovering from her injuries.

 

National

A long read from the former science editor for National Geographic says mountain bikers are saving the world by mapping it.

The Bureau of Land Management is looking for whoever dismantled a Colorado mountain bike trail less than two hours after it was repaired.

A New Mexico man calls his own actions reckless and irresponsible as he’s sentenced to four and a half years for killing a cyclist while driving at three times the legal alcohol limit.

The rich get richer. Missouri officials open a new 47.5-mile link in the 238-mile Katy Trail crossing the state; meanwhile, a 74-year old woman rides the full length of the trail on her $89 Walmart bike.

Famed law professor Alan Dershowitz calls on New York bike riders to stop at red lights after ten close calls while crossing the street. Meanwhile, the invariably hysterical New York Post posits a citywide conspiracy to jam up traffic and force people to leave their cars at home and take bikes or transit.

It takes a world class jerk to pretend to call the police after hitting a teenage North Carolina bike rider.

Retired boxing champ Floyd Mayweather is one of us, riding his fat bike around Miami with his friends.

After a Florida bicyclist breaks his leg in a collision with a car, he asks the driver to take him to the hospital to avoid paying for an ambulance ride.

A Florida woman gets seven years in the DUI death of a teenage bike rider.

 

International

A Calgary columnist complains that a network of downtown cycle tracks is about to be approved by the city council even though only a small majority of drivers like them. And makes it very clear that the opinion of anyone who doesn’t drive doesn’t matter.

A London bike advocacy group is crowdfunding a campaign to fight the damage done by taxi drivers, anti-bike groups and NIMBYs.

London’s Telegraph blames bike riders and people on cell phones for turning the country’s canal towpaths into crowded collision zones.

In a dramatic move to improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians, London plans to ban vehicular traffic from a dangerous junction during daylight hours.

Bike theft isn’t just an American problem; nearly 82,000 bicycles were stolen in England and Wales over a 12-month period.

Great Britain is getting tough on traffic crimes; dangerous drivers who kill could now face up to life in prison.

This is why people continue to die on the streets. A Brit man has been convicted of drunk driving ten times, along with 61 — yes, you read that right — convictions for driving with a suspended license. And keeps driving anyway, despite being jailed four times this year alone.

Evidently, some bike thieves actually have a heart. Thieves returned a mountain bike they’d stolen from a Northern Irish boy just before the anniversary of his father’s death, following an appeal from the boy’s mother; the bike was his father’s last gift to him before his sudden death.

A Dutch study shows it’s five times more efficient to evacuate a city by bicycle than by motor vehicle. Something that will be worth remembering when it’s time to flee Los Angeles. And it will be, sooner or later.

A new Spanish study says even a five-foot passing distance is not enough, depending on the vehicle type and speed.

A “speeding” Aussie cyclist gets all the blame for running over and killing a small dog, even though the owner admits letting her dog stray onto the wrong side of a pathway next to a blind curve. You should always ride carefully around any living thing, especially kids and animals, who can be impulsive and unpredictable. But the people responsible for those kids and dogs need to be exactly that, as well.

The parable of the Good Samaritan comes to life when a Singaporean bike rider falls hard after his chain breaks; the locals leave him lying injured in the street, while it takes a group of migrant construction workers come to his aid.

 

Finally…

Yes, you may be a big important government official, but you can’t ride your bike anymore. Organizing a bike race is more fun when you don’t end up in jail.

And yes, you can carry a refrigerator on your bicycle.

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BikinginLA exists because of the generosity of people like you. So if you haven’t already, please take a moment to contribute to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive to help keep it coming your way every day.

And a heartfelt thank you to everyone who has given to help support this site.

Morning Links: Important LA River bike path meeting tonight, and hard-hitting Aussie road safety videos

Just a quick reminder before we start.

Chances are, if you rode your bike to work today, it’s going to be dark before you head back home. So make sure your lights are fully charged or have fresh batteries before you ride tonight.

And even if you never ride after dark, throw a set of inexpensive lights in your seat bag in case you get delayed by a flat or mechanical problem.

I’ve learned the hard way that unexpected things can happen to keep you out later than you planned. And it can be scary as hell trying to make it back home without lights surrounded by angry and aggressive drivers.

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As CiclaValley reminds us, the Army Corps of Engineers is holding a meeting tonight to discuss the most recent closure of the LA River bike path, after apparently concluding that people in LA don’t ride bikes after Labor Day.

We need to let them know just how wrong that is.

The LA River trail is a vital link, not just for recreational riders, but for countless people riding to work and school. And closing a large section down for six months when the city is trying to encourage bike commuting makes no more sense than shutting down a major roadway.

The meeting starts at 6:30 this evening, ending at 8:30 pm, at the Friendship Auditorium, 3201 Riverside Drive.

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Jeffrey Fylling forwards a series of road safety PSAs put together as part of a student competition sponsored by Australia’s Amy Gillett Foundation, named for a track cyclist killed in a collision while training in Germany eleven years ago.

I might question the last one, but there’s some damn good work here. Especially for students.

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A former World Gravel Race champ and world traveler says let’s keep the golf out of cycling.

There have always been unwritten rules in regards to what to wear, how the colour of your bar tape has to match your seat and about what bike you ride. But at the end of the day, it really didn’t matter how much your bike was worth because the enjoyment of the sport, the company of your friends and the accomplishment through your legs overruled any blatant materialism.

But it seems, there is a new trend creeping in.

The capitalism-induced search for a new status symbol has changed the reason why people ride bikes. Cycling has become pretty, elitist, materialistic with a seemingly insurmountable wall to be climbed to be accepted into a group. Until then, you will be shamelessly ignored as a hubbard or fred.

That scares me.

It’s a great piece. So take a few minutes to read the whole thing.

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Don’t forget to Bike the Vote when you cast your ballot tomorrow.

bike-the-vote

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Local

The Wall Street Journal’s Jason Gay takes a look at Gran Fondos, including Phil Gaimon’s Malibu Gran Cookie Dough yesterday, saying they’re as fun or as challenging as you want, and a great way for pro cyclists to connect with their fans. Although he was disappointed pro cycling’s retiring Cookie Monster only ate five cookies along the way.

Richard Risemberg talks multi-modal commuting.

Bike SGV is partnering with the Eastside Bike Club for a pet-friendly — or Pet-acular, as they call it — ride in conjunction with the SoCalCross cyclocross race at Legg Lake on the 19th.

 

State

An Oxnard man suffered non-life threatening injuries when he was shot while riding his bike early Saturday.

San Francisco installs speed humps in Golden Gate park where a woman was killed by a speeding hit-and-run driver while riding her bike earlier this year. Once again, too little too late. But maybe it will help prevent the next one.

Oakland’s mayor and California’s Lt. Governor get on their bikes to promote a local measure to fix the roads, upgrade public facilities and build affordable housing.

 

National

Your next tire may never go flat. And throw away your air pump while you’re at it.

Oregon Rep. Earl Blumenauer urges you to bike the vote by riding to cast your ballot.

That didn’t take long. Seattle drivers are parking in a new bike lane before it’s even opened.

A New York man was badly injured in a collision with a hit-and-run bicyclist while he was crossing the street.

The Washington Post says Lance Armstrong is using his new podcast to turn his image around. He could start by working to improve safety on our streets where his voice could really make a difference.

New Orleans becomes the latest city to adopt a bikeshare system.

 

International

Experts argue that self-driving cars may eliminate the need for bicycling infrastructure, but cyclists and pedestrians may take advantage of all those poor cars once they learn the cars have to stop for them.

Bike Radar asks if you’re better off standing on your pedals or sitting when you ride up a hill. And concludes the answer is yes.

HuffPo writes in praise of the upright bike.

A British Columbia driver somehow slammed into a group of six cyclists, killing one and critically injuring another.

A Canadian writer explains why he rides a bicycle, which he calls mankind’s most civilized invention.

The Isle of Wright votes to lower speed limits to 20 mph in built-up areas in an effort to save lives.

It’s quicker to ride a bike than to drive on some sections of a London highway near Heathrow. Maybe they should allow bikes on the freeway so people could choose the more efficient option.

A Brit website looks at why getting more bicyclists on the road means fewer fatalities.

A British man admits to being a hypocrite by running red lights on his bicycle because he doesn’t want to wait, but rolling his eyes when he sees someone else do it while he’s driving.

Prague holds its annual Penny Farthing race.

An Indian couple discovers romance on wheels by riding together.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to ride behind a reporter doing a live broadcast, make sure you wheel is firmly attached. Irish police lock up a pair of bike chasing terrorist terriers.

And the next time someone says bike riders need to pay their fair share, give ‘em a nickel.

 

 

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