Tag Archive for Playa del Rey

Morning Links: Vision Zero in reverse on Vista del Mar, and an indignorant self-pious anti-bike lane cyclist

This is not how Vision Zero is supposed to work.

Bowing to complaints from angry motorists, Los Angeles reversed the road diet on Vista del Mar in Playa del Rey last week.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports the reconfigured street is now a “desolate, 4-lane highway,” with nothing to keep drivers from exceeding the already too high 40 mph speed limit.

And exceed it, they will. And already are.

Which means it’s just a matter of time until the next death on a roadway that has already seen far too many.

Except this time, the inevitable lawsuit will settle for far more than the $9.5 million paid out by the city recently in the death of a 16-year old girl. Because they had a chance to fix the problem and not only didn’t do it, but undid the fix they made.

A cost that will be born, not by the South Bay drivers who use the roadway as their personal speedway, but by the people of Los Angeles.

Or the South Bay cities that believe in calming traffic, but only inside their own city limits, for that matter.

It’s too early to give up on Vision Zero.

But this is exactly the wrong thing to do. And for exactly the wrong reasons.

Photo of deconfigured Vista del Mar by Streetsblog’s Joe Linton.

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Once again, the specter of an indignorant, self-pious cyclist raises its ugly head.

This time in the form of a San Luis Obispo columnist who says he obeys the law when he rides, but accuses the city council of appeasing those damn scofflaw bike zealots with a cycle track he insists no one else wants anyway.

Maybe someone should tell him that many law abiding bike riders desperately want safer places to ride their bikes, and better bikeways have been shown to reduce illegal bike behavior.

And no, drivers don’t pay all the taxes and fees for the construction and maintenance of our roads.

Or even most of them.

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BikinginLA sponsor Thomas Forsyth will team with Wolfpack Hustle to host the Forsyth Cup at the Encino Velodrome on September 16th.

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Team USA announced the women’s team for the coming world road championships, including 42-year old defending world time trial champ Amber Neben, Chloe Dygert, Megan Gaurnier and SoCal’s own Coryn Rivera.

The Colorado-based Cannondale Drapac cycling team — home to Taylor Phinney, Alex Howes and Rigoberto Uran — has reluctantly started a crowdfunding campaign to stay afloat after losing a key sponsor for next year; the Denver Post reports it’s already raised around $1.5 million.

Chris Froome shrugged off concerns that his Team Sky has an unfair financial advantage over the other teams, comparing efforts to level the playing field to communism. Which is easy to say when he’s guaranteed a job for next year.

Good thing the doping era is over. This year’s Dana Point Grand Prix winner Kayle LeoGrande was banned for a whopping eight years after a drug test revealed seven separate prohibited substances.

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Local

West Hollywood’s WeHo Pedals celebrates its first anniversary tomorrow at Sal Guarriello Park at Santa Monica Blvd and Holloway from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm. In case you’re wondering, the traditional gift for a one-year anniversary is paper; do with that what you will.

Pasadena’s planned two-way Union Street cycle track could start construction before the projected 2021 kickoff date.

Santa Clarita sheriff’s deputies will be conducting a bike and pedestrian safety enforcement program tomorrow, ticketing people for behavior that can jeopardize the safety of either, regardless of who commits it. Which means ride to the letter of the law until you’re out of their jurisdiction, which extends beyond the city limits.

The Expo Line bike path continues to be closed for maintenance work between Centinela and Stewart Street in Santa Monica; SaMo is also conducting a bike technology demonstration project at the intersection of Pico and 11th this week.

 

State

The OC Register gives you the lowdown on California ebike laws.

Nearly 20 special needs kids in Ventura get new adaptive tricycles, thanks to a Los Angeles-based nonprofit.

A Fresno school bus driver apparently right hooked a teenage bike rider, and just kept going.

The victim of Sunday’s Guerneville hit-and-run that killed a bike rider as he checked his phone on the side of the road has been identified as the chief legal counsel for UC Berkeley; a 28-year old Rio Nido man has been named a person of interest in the case.

Sacramento State University students will be greeted with several new green bike lanes leading to campus, as well Sacramento’s first bike boxes and bicycle traffic signal on a dangerous corridor near the school.

A large landslide nine months ago will keep a popular Sacramento riverfront bike trail closed until at least next spring.

 

National

PlacesForBikes’ Michael Andersen says improving bicycling is as much about slowing traffic speeds as it is building bike lanes.

A Seattle woman celebrates bike riders of all sizes with stickers reading With These Thighs.

The war on bikes continues, as a 72-year old Arkansas bike rider was seriously injured when he ran into barbed wire that had been strung at chest level across a bike trail. Lets hope they catch the jerks who did it and lock them up for a very long time.

A Pittsburgh website says new bike lanes are a good first step, but more has to be done to ensure safety.

Boston cops have accepted an invitation from the founder of a Boston stunt-bike group to ride with them, after the riders were booted from a parade that banned bikes over the weekend.

The New York Times examines dockless bikeshare companies, which are currently banned from the city.

 

International

Montreal bike cops accidently bust one of the United States’ most wanted criminals.

Six-time Brit Olympic champ Sir Chris Hoy says pretty much anyone who weighs more than 112 pounds looks awful in Lycra, and looks ridiculous in fluorescent colors or a full team kit; he later issued an apology for some of his remarks. Although I do have to agree with him about white bike shorts, which don’t look good on anyone.

A paper in the UK offers advice on how to keep your bike from getting stolen.

Organizers of a British mountain bike race face charges for not doing enough to ensure the safety of spectators after a young woman was killed by an out-of-control bike in 2014.

After months of reports that self-driving cars can’t recognize bike and riders would have to wear some sort of transponder to improve safety, German auto parts maker Bosch is introducing a radar system designed to recognize and automatically respond to bicyclists even in heavy fog, as well as spotting riders coming from behind in order to prevent doorings.

A sharp decline in Australian imports of children’s bikes prompts fears that children are less active in the country. It could have something to do with the country’s dangerous, auto-centric streets, and a mandatory helmet law and draconian fines that discourage their parents from riding. Or it could have something to do with dangerous bikes, after an Aussie teenager was impaled by the gear shift on his bicycle.

 

Finally…

Your next foldie could weigh just 15 pounds. Who needs spin class when you can just pedal your desk?

And why let a little thing like a hurricane keep you from riding?

 

Morning Links: Playa del Rey task force unveiled, a call to block Long beach road diet, and new Crypto Cycles film

Councilmember Mike Bonin has followed up on his promise to create a task force to study the Playa del Rey road diets.

He named a panel of 20 people to the Playa del Rey Safer Streets Task Force, charged with determining if the lane reductions should stay in place. And what other changes, if any, should be made to improve safety in the beachfront community.

The panel is made up of local residents and business people, including those for and against the recent changes.

Although it’s notable that only Peter Flax is identified by his means of transportation; evidently, it’s just assumed that everyone else drives.

You know, like normal people.

Meanwhile, the Easy Reader News offers one of the most in-depth examinations of the controversy to date, as South Bay residents continue to expect everyone else to pay the price for their unsustainable single-occupant commutes.

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A “longtime Long Beach resident” appears to have taken the wrong lesson from the Vista del Mar fiasco, saying LA’s portside neighbor should learn from LA and cancel the planned Broadway bike lanes.

Long Beach really wants to be Amsterdam, where bicycles rule. But we live in Southern California, where distances between home and work are often great, good public transportation is essentially non-existent, and temperatures are often in the 80s and 90s (and it’s getting hotter every year).

Apparently, our council imagines if we destroy our main traffic arteries, those streets will just go “poof,” cars will disappear and lanes will magically fill up with air-conditioned, long-distance commuter bicycles.

Yes, because those moderate temperatures are just too hot for humans to endure. Especially with those cool sea breezes and coastal clouds to cool things off.

And never mind that most car trips in the LA area are three miles or less. Which hardly requires a long-distance commuter bicycle.

Or bicyclist, for that matter.

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Last week we showed you a trailer for Décryptø, the experimental short film from Scott Nichols looking at the custom hand-made carbon fiber bikes from SoCal’s Cryptic Cycles.

Now you can see the whole six-minute film, which dropped yesterday.

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Security footage shows a Walmart security guard intentionally run down a bike rider in a parking lot.

Twice.

The Albuquerque Walmart guard then claimed the rider simply fell over on his own when he hit the curb with his bike.

Sure. Let’s go with that.

According to the guard, the whole thing started when the man on the bike hit her car with a soda. Which even if true, does not justify assault with a deadly weapon once.

Let alone twice.

The bicyclist’s version is that he was just taking a drink, and accidently splashed water on the car.

Fortunately, he was not seriously injured.

Nor, apparently, was the driver by the soda or water that somehow splashed her vehicle.

Police seem to believe the guy on the bike — and the video — arresting the security guard on a charge of aggravated battery.

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Here’s the spoiler-free standings of the Vuelta after two stages, with a recap of Sunday’s second stage, which was too fast for successful breakaways.

Britain’s twin Yates brothers will ride twin bikes in the Vuelta that are mirror images of each other.

After falling out with Australian cycling officials and getting left off the country’s cycling team last year, Aussie track cyclist Shane Perkins has received special permission from Russian President Vladimir Putin to ride for that country, which has a desperate need for cyclists who aren’t banned for doping.

Security is high in Spain for the Vuelta and the kickoff of the country’s soccer season following the terror attack in Barcelona, but won’t affect the route.

In non-Vuelta news, Peloton looks at LA’s own pro crit champ Justin Williams.

A Tour of Norway breakaway was reeled back in when a bridge unexpectedly opened, stopping the lead riders dead in their tracks until the rest of the field caught up.

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Local

Sad news from South LA, where a man was killed and two women wounded in a drive-by shooting while riding their bikes in the Florence-Firestone neighborhood. Note to KTLA-5: It’s not a shootout unless the victims shoot back.

Burbank’s new bike corrals are proving a hit with bicyclists, at times holding as many as 16 bikes in a space built for 14.

A writer for the San Gabriel Valley Tribune talks with two men who went carfree, and remarkably, their lives did not grind to a halt.

 

State

The legislator who authored California’s handheld cellphone ban says the reason it’s almost universally ignored by drivers is that the penalty is too low. He tried twice to increase the penalty slightly, but both times it was vetoed by a clueless Governor Brown.

A former BMX rider has started a BMX club for school kids in San Diego’s Barrio Logan to help teach bike safety and get the kids exercising.

A San Luis Obispo letter writer says no, the streets actually belong to all of us.

San Francisco parks officials have decided that protected bike lanes would detract from the beauty of Golden Gate Park. Because all those streets and cars are just so damn pretty.

A kindhearted South San Francisco cop passes along his own son’s bicycle to replace one stolen from a 10-year old boy.

A Sacramento mother says the hit-and-run driver who killed her 15-year old son as he rode his bike back home with a friend has changed her family’s lives forever.

The Chico Velo bicycle advocacy group is looking for a new executive director, as the woman who has run the group in the Gold-level bike-friendly city since 2012 is looking to retire.

Now that’s more like it. A Lake Tahoe man gets four years and eight months behind bars for running a stop sign and hitting a bicyclist while driving at three times the legal alcohol limit, then attempting to run down a witness that followed him; he’s also banned from driving for five years after his release. Make that a lifetime driving ban, and we’ve got a deal.

 

National

Germany’s Canyon bikes is coming to the US for the first time, available only through the internet.

Bicycling takes a short look at problems tall people don’t have.

As dockless bikeshare expands in Seattle, many riders are ignoring the local bike helmet requirement, while police focus on education over writing rickets. Meanwhile, a Libertarian who derided bikeshare as socialist has found the privately owned dockless bikeshare more to his liking.

No surprise here. The relatives of a fallen cyclist have filed suit against the organizers of the Kansas City Crit after he was killed falling into a steel crowd-control barrier in June.

Great idea. An Oklahoma city holds an annual Tour de Trykes to raise funds to give away 30 to 40 adaptive tricycles to special needs kids.

Forget motorists upset over the loss of parking or traffic lanes. A group of homeless people may sue to block plans for a Chicago bike path because it could force them out from the bridge they’ve been living under.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A Minnesota bioscience researcher was killed riding her bike, as she was on her way to mentor people at a homeless shelter.

A Michigan advocacy group collected donations to create a reward fund help solve serious crimes against bicyclists.

There’s a special place in hell for the hit-and-run driver who left a bike-riding nun dying in the street.

Detroit is planning to more than double the amount of protected bike lanes in the city.

A North Carolina community remembers a man who earned the name Bicycle Jonny by riding his bicycle everywhere, after he was killed by a speeding driver.

 

International

A British Columbia bicyclist was beaten with his own bike after being knocked off it by mentally disturbed man as he rode on a bike trail; the woman he was riding with escaped with minor injuries.

A 17-year old high school grad builds his portfolio with breathtaking photos taken on a summer bike tour across the Canadian Rockies.

A toddler was knocked out of his stroller by a sidewalk cyclist in Ottawa, Canada. Seriously, if you’re going to ride on the sidewalk, slow the hell down and ride carefully around pedestrians.

Employees at a Nova Scotia market rescue a bike rider after she suffers heat stroke on a trail ride.

A writer for the Guardian says that she’s lazy, but cycling with a pack of women through a London park changed that.

A letter writer in the UK says the correct answer to the question “Where are all the cyclists in the bike lanes?” is leave your car at home and bike in them yourself.

A mystery was solved after a British couple discovered a pool of blood and a backpack on their porch after hearing a knock on their door, and police conducted an unsuccessful search using dogs. It turned out to be a man who had fallen off his bike and suffered a head injury; his friends had taken him to a hotel for help after they found him knocking on the door of the house for help.

A Glasgow bike rider receives a round of applause for his response to an anti-gay street preacher.

The Jewish couple who created Curious George escaped the Nazi invasion on a makeshift tandem bike, riding from Paris to the south of France before fleeing to Brazil by train and boat.

Indian bike riders take a rain-soaked midnight ride through the streets of Mumbai.

Eight British Muslim men rode their bicycles 2,000 miles through eight countries to attend the Hajj in Saudi Arabia.

A 70-year old Australian woman describes what it’s like to be doored from a painful first-hand perspective.

WaPo says if you really want to see Kyoto, Japan, walk, bike or take a train.

 

Finally…

No, the best way to avoid wrecking your car during the eclipse is riding your bicycle, instead. If you’re going to run away from a crash with a bike rider, try not to leave your passenger behind.

And Lance’s Kiwi beer ad has been canned.

 

Morning Links: Today’s burning bikeshare news, and Westchester/ Playa NC requests road diet removal

It’s our first light news day in awhile, so let’s get right to it.

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Today’s common theme is bikeshare.

Caught on video: Vandalism of the Bay Area’s Ford GoBike bikeshare continues, as someone set one of the bikes on fire as it was docked.

A new Rutgers University survey shows black and Latino respondents support bike lanes and bikeshare, but concerns over crime and racial profiling have to be addressed first.

Two more dockless bikeshare companies are taking to the streets of Seattle, starting with China’s Ofo.

It really shouldn’t surprise anyone that the Trump Administration had a bikeshare station removed from the White House grounds, after it had been installed at the request of the previous administration.

The battle for dominance in China’s crowded bikeshare market claimed another victim as Nanking’s Ding Ding went out of business without returning customer’s deposits.

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In a setback for safer streets, the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa voted to send an advisory letter to CD11 Councilmember Mike Bonin calling on him to “immediately reverse the lane reductions in Playa del Rey.”

The motion was approved after removing Pershing Drive from the resolution, which presumably means they want to keep that one.

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Local

KPCC looks at plans to revamp the area in front of Union Station to make it more inviting for people walking and biking. Even if that means eliminating some parking and reducing traffic lanes on nearby streets.

Volunteers are wanted to help clean up the Santa Clara River in Santa Clarita; free bike valet will be provided by local bike shop Performance Cyclery.

Manhattan Beach approves a 400 foot bikeway along Pollywog park to improve safety to middle school students going to and from school.

 

State

The LA Weekly asks if California’s strict DUI laws are tough enough. That’s easy. No.

San Diego authorities thought they caught a break when police detained a couple for the hit-and-run that left a bike-riding woman in a medically induced coma, but it turned out to be the wrong car. Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the heads-up.

After dominating California high school mountain biking, recent Ramona High School graduate Gwendalyn Gibson will represent the US at the world championships in Australia next month.

Santa Barbara will get its first protected bike lane, connecting the Eastside to downtown. If you can call bendable bollards protection, that is.

No bias here. A San Luis Obispo paper says local residents aren’t happy about plans to create a bicycle boulevard. Except they’ve dropped plans for the bike boulevard, and are actually proposing a pair of protected bike lanes. And only “several” of the 60 speakers complained about the proposal.

San Francisco is planning a road diet, bike lanes and other safety improvements on one of the city’s most dangerous corridors as part of the city’s Vision Zero program.

A Sebastopol bike gear maker nearly became the victim of a patent troll.

West Sacramento is installing a road diet to improve safety for people biking and walking; as usual, some residents want it ripped out before the construction is even finished.

A Sacramento public radio station examines efforts to allow mountain biking in US wilderness areas.

Folsom will open the full 2.5 mile Johnny Cash trail this October, honoring the singer’s legendary 1968 performance at nearby Folsom Prison; artwork depicting the singer will follow in another five years.

 

National

Seattle’s police department politely suggests it has better things to do than enforce the county’s mandatory bike helmet law.

Caught on video too: Bighearted Texas paramedics make a four-year old girl’s day by giving her a bicycle one of their daughters had outgrown after they treated her for a fall.

It took a bike rider to find a pair of horses that threw their riders and ran off into a Missouri national battlefield after getting spooked by turkeys.

Nice story. When a father tweeted that he couldn’t take his little daughter to a Green Bay Packers event she’d been looking forward to, one of the Packers players volunteered to ride a bike with her to a team practice himself. Even though her father was a Vikings fan.

Kindhearted Michigan cops buy a new bicycle for a young girl after taking a report about her stolen bicycle.

A New York driver parked in a bike lane — then chased after a woman and called her a fucking bitch after she had the audacity to ride her bike around him. Apparently, she was supposed to sit there and wait until he moved his car. Or maybe she said something as she rode past.

 

International

A fan of the Nottingham soccer club is riding to all of the second-tier British team’s away games to raise money for a cancer charity; he expects to ride at least 2,249 miles before the season ends next May.

Caught on video: A Scottish van driver has to make a panic stop to avoid a bike rider who rode out directly in front of him at a rainy junction.

Self-described anarchists remove grocery store ads from Helsinki’s bikeshare bikes.

Life is cheap in Singapore, where a truck driver got a whopping four weeks for killing an ebike rider when he pulled out from an intersection without looking. But at least he was banned from driving for five years, which will likely force him to find another line of work.

 

Finally…

No, you don’t want to borrow an abandoned bike in Japan. There’s a lot of good ways to impress friends; stealing a bike isn’t one of them.

And no, those bike-shaped bike racks aren’t meant for riding.

 

Morning Links: Laguna driver runs down cyclist and tries to hit another, stolen bikes, and Vision Zero news

Talk about getting the story wrong.

The Daily Pilot reported yesterday that a Laguna Beach driver had attempted to crash his car into a bicyclist who tried to stop him after he’d hit another rider.

But what they failed to mention was that the first crash was intentional, as well.

The Laguna Beach Police Department reported on their Facebook page that the driver fled after intentionally crashing into a man riding his bicycle, then trying to run over the second rider as he attempted to confront him.

Thankfully, he missed.

Fifty-three-year old Laguna Beach resident Kevin O’Neill was arrested on Saturday, after witnesses and victims picked his photo out of a lineup following the twin attacks Thursday morning at Bluebird Canyon Road and South Coast Highway.

No word on the condition of his victim.

Fortunately, this took place in Orange County, where the DA takes traffic crime seriously. We should expect a charge of assault with a deadly weapon, at the very least.

But let this serve as yet another reminder that it’s not worth your life to confront an angry driver.

Gather whatever information you can, from the make, model, color and license of the vehicle to a description of the driver, as well as any photos or video, if possible.

Then get hell out of the way and let the police deal with it.

Mug shot of Kevin O’Neill from Laguna Beach Police Department Facebook page.

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Let’s catch up with a couple of quick stolen bike announcements.

Bobby Close of LA’s popular Velo Club La Grange sent the following notice.

One of our members had his bike stolen recently in Ventura California, his name is Marc Thomas. His bike should be easy to spot as it’s a 66cm custom made Landshark bicycle YES Marc IS TALL!!! Marc is one of the great members we have in LaGrange as he is constantly teaching new and old cyclists in his world famous “ Drills for Skills” clinics. Along with being a key member of the club he was one of the many people instrumental in making the Brentwood Grand Prix happen for so many years.

Attached is a picture of the stolen bike. The bike should stand out as only NBA basketball players are tall enough to ride it.

I’ve asked for additional information on exactly when and where the bike was stolen, but haven’t heard back yet.

And Mina Moskol of the LACBC’s Santa Clarita Chapter forwards a flyer for a bicycle stolen from one of the competitors in the World Police and Fire Games staying at a Palmdale hotel last week.

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In the never-ending battle over the Playa del Rey traffic safety improvements, the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa will debate a motion to approve a letter calling for a reversal of the all the Playa del Rey lane reductions at tonight’s meeting.

Despite what opponents of the Venice Blvd Great Streets project are saying, Sweet Lucie’s Ice Cream in Mar Vista may be closing, but it has nothing to do with the lane reductions.

And a new online petition asks you to show your support for Vision Zero in the face of attacks from angry drivers and talk radio jocks.

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Forget the worst retirement ever; LA’s own former pro Phil Gaimon ranks the top ten cookies in the United States.

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We’ll catch up with bike events later this week, but I can’t resist this one. Which could be the best idea for a kid’s bike safety workshop ever.

Correction: This event takes place on Saturday the 19th, not on the 21st. Thanks to the LACBC for the correction.

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Spoiler alert: If you haven’t the final stages of the Colorado Classic yet, skip this section.

And if you haven’t, what the hell are you waiting for?

Italy’s Manuel Senni and Romanian Serghei Tvetcov held off the peloton to win the inaugural Colorado Classic after a two-man breakaway in Saturday’s Stage 3, as Colorado’s Alex Howes lost the lead he gained on Stage 2.

Despite the accusations that her birth sex gave her an unfair advantage, trans cyclist Jillian Bearden finished in the middle of the women’s field, while 21-year old Canadian Sara Poidevin swept to victory.

The race introduced a number of young American cyclists to international competition. Or maybe the other way around.

Cycling Tips offers some great photos from the four stage race, as well as the women’s two-stage competition.

A Denver business site offers a look at the festival that accompanied, and helped pay for, the bike race.

Cycling News points out a number of problems with the race and accompanying festival, but the chairman of the Colorado Classic says based on feedback, the race will probably be back next year.

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Local

The Source offers photos from Sunday’s CicLAvia, while some local businesses in San Pedro complain about traffic and say they weren’t consulted. CicLAvia always puts a significant effort into outreach, for as long as a year prior to a new event; businesses that respond and cater to the people passing by are usually richly rewarded; those who don’t, aren’t.

The Expo Line bike path was abruptly closed for the next three months between Centinela and Stewart Street for undisclosed maintenance work on Monday; Santa Monica Next says the detour around the work zone could be made safer simply by moving a few parking spaces.

A new bike and pedestrian pathway and bridge along the Pacoima Wash should offer a significant cut in non-motorized travel times through the northern San Fernando Valley.

While LA is busy battling NIMBYs, Burbank is reinventing itself as a denser, more walkable and bikeable community.

The LACBC is offering a free indoor class on basic bicycling skills tonight.

CiclaValley offers video evidence that going down Mt. Baldy is a lot faster than going up.

 

State

San Diego sheriff’s deputies are looking for the hit-and-run scumbag who left a 29-year old woman in a medically induced coma after running her down in Encinitas on Friday.

A San Diego mountain biker was airlifted out of Sycamore Canyon suffering from head and neck pain.

In a horrific crime, San Francisco police are looking for a man on a bicycle who blinded a woman by pouring bleach on her after telling her to leave.

San Francisco bikeshare bikes are vandalized once again, as a local columnist says bikeshare is resented as a sign of gentrification.

A kindhearted San Francisco cop bought a new bike for a ten-year old boy after his was stolen.

Nineteen bicyclists with Type 1 diabetes finish a 4,248-mile from New York to Napa County.

Tragic news from Sacramento, where yet another hit-and-run coward killed a man riding his bike on the shoulder of a roadway.

 

National

The National Transportation Safety Board recommends reforming the deadly 85th Percentile Rule, which allows speeding drivers to dictate speed limits. Or better yet, just get rid of the damn thing entirely.

People for Bikes offers free photos and a detailed explanation of what makes an effective neighborhood greenway, formerly known as bicycle boulevards. AKA bicycle friendly streets here in LA, though no one seems to have any plans to actually build any anytime soon.

Bicycling offers advice on how to get police to take your bike cam video seriously. Which is a problem with most police departments — including here in LA.

Bike Snob says “on your left!” needs to die already, even though there’s no way to pass anyone on a trail without scaring the crap out of them. I’ve found that simply adding the word passing, as in “passing on your left,” in a polite, conversational tone solves the problem almost every time. But what the hell do I know?

Treehugger says cars really should wear hi-viz, their drivers should wear helmets, and car radios should be banned. The latter would have the added benefit of keeping radio shock jocks from fueling drivers’ anger and contributing to road rage.

A Washington bike rider was killed by a driver with a suspended license. Proving once again the difficulty of keeping dangerous drivers off the road unless their vehicles are impounded as well. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link.

Colorado’s Mesa Verde National Park invites you to bike the park on September 30th.

An Arkansas man finishes an extreme Alaska triathlon just within the cutoff time, despite losing a leg 32 years earlier.

The famed Cleveland Clinic offers advice on how to get back to riding a bicycle. And why.

Despite testifying that he was simply riding safely by taking the lane, the Pennsylvania cyclist on trial for obstructing traffic was convicted last week; sentencing is in three months, even though he’s already served a full year in jail awaiting trial. It sounds like the real problem was that he was too militant about his rights as a bicyclist, refusing to move over even when traffic backed up behind him.

New York tells dockless bikeshare companies to get lost.

The NY Daily News says only in New York could a truck driver leave the scene after running down a bike rider, and not be charged. Obviously, they’ve never been to Los Angeles.

Speaking of Bike Snob, as we were earlier, his alter ego offers 15 unwritten rules of bicycling in New York City you’re probably breaking. Or maybe would be, if you actually rode there.

Delaware state police blame a rider for wearing dark clothes in low light conditions and taking the lane after he’s rear-ended by a driver. Correction: I originally criticized the police for bending over backwards to blame the rider after noting that the crash occurred two hours before sunset. However, as Andy S pointed out, the crash actually took place before sunrise, not sunset. I apologize for the confusion.

A Louisiana astronomer has been riding across the US for the last 450 days to educate Americans about next week’s solar eclipse, covering over 9,000 miles before his planned finish in Nashville on Monday.

 

International

A fifth of all bicycling deaths in Montreal are caused by collisions with trucks, usually when riders are right hooked and dragged under the truck. Something that could be avoided by requiring sideguards.

A London court is told a fixie rider could have avoided a fatal collision with a pedestrian if he hadn’t been riding brakeless; he blamed the woman for walking distracted, instead.

Bicycle Dutch reviews the world’s biggest bicycle parking garage.

Cycling Weekly lists seven rides in Italy to add to your bicycling bucket list.

An Aussie parliament member who opposes same sex marriage says he loves the guys he bikes with, but he doesn’t want to marry them. And apparently doesn’t get it, either.

An Australian study shows men are more likely to commit acts of violence on the road, but women drivers tend to be angrier.

 

Finally…

The problem isn’t potholes, it’s the fairies. Most bike riders only have to worry about dog bites, not two-foot long iguanas — or bears.

And just what every single cyclist needs, bicycle speed dating.

 

Morning Links: Second lawsuit filed over Playa del Rey road diets, and bizarre racist traffic manifesto mailed

You knew it was coming.

In news that should surprise no one, a second lawsuit has been filed over the lane reductions on Vista del Mar and other streets in Playa del Rey.

This time, by the un-ironically named driver-activist group Keep LA Moving.

Which is fighting efforts to do just that in Playa del Rey and Mar Vista, by demanding a continuation of the failed auto-centric planning that has harmed so many parts of our city, at the expense of everyone who isn’t currently in a car.

What is only a little surprising is the paranoid, tinfoil-hat wearing extremes to which they’ve taken their case.

According to a story in the Daily Breeze,

City officials have “engaged in a campaign of misinformation, name calling and race baiting, claiming that the aforementioned changes were made for ‘safety’ reasons, while the changes have made the affected roadways exponentially unsafe,” the lawsuit states.

Race baiting? Seriously?

In response to backlash, the lawsuit says, Bonin misleadingly used the stories of victims who were killed on the streets, failing to mention details that show lane reductions wouldn’t have prevented their deaths.

“In none of these cases was the unfortunate death caused by too many lanes on the road, or the lack of dedicated bicycle lanes,” the suit states.

Never mind that the victims might have survived the crashes if the traffic had been moving at a less deadly pace. Which was the expressed purpose of removing those lanes.

But here’s the best one.

It also accuses the city of failing to conduct adequate public outreach for the Safe Streets for Playa del Rey Initiative, saying only 150 of Playa del Rey’s 12,000 residents were engaged in the process.

“LADOT thereafter populated neighborhood forums with outside, paid supporters to make it appear that local residents were overwhelmingly supporting the projects,” the suit states.

If you didn’t get your check, contact LADOT and demand payment. Because evidently, everyone else who supported the projects did.

And never mind that many, if not most, of those opposing the projects don’t even live in Los Angeles, let alone in Playa del Rey.

Keep L.A. Moving also alleges Bonin’s office has suppressed free speech by allegedly deleting critical comments and blocking users from his Facebook page.

Maybe they should give the 1st Amendment another read. Because I don’t think it means what they think it means.

Then finally, there’s this.

Keep L.A. Moving director Karla Mendelson said her group isn’t against safety, but wants to make elected officials think twice before implementing road diets.

No, they’re all for safety. As long as it doesn’t inconvenience them.

You can download a full copy of the lawsuit here.

………

Traffic safety advocates and neighborhood council members around Los Angeles have been receiving a very strange and offensive screed purporting to discuss traffic safety.

This bizarrely auto-centric piece, which is filled with bike hate and 180 degrees wrong on most traffic safety efforts, reads like the Unibomber’s manifesto, but without the intelligence.

Take this section on wide bike lanes. Please.

Even more frightening than the writer’s obvious glee at the fantasy of watching another human being die in the street, is the fact that these fliers have been mailed to people’s home addresses — an implied threat clearly saying “we know where you live.”

I’m told that at least one neighborhood council member has resigned as a result.

It’s horrifying to think that working to make this a more bikeable, walkable and livable city could put you in the crosshairs of people willing to threaten others to maintain their philosophy of autos über alles on the streets.

But that seems to be the world we live in.

……….

The self-proclaimed “LA’s #1 walking and biking advocacy group” we mentioned yesterday —which calls Vision Zero “population control,” and falsely claimed to be part of the non-existent group behind this website — says it will hold a public meeting at Intelligencia Coffee in Venice on Saturday.

If you live in the area, maybe you should drop in and see if they really exist.

And if they’re really there, give them a nice, big WTF for me.

And maybe a restraining order.

………

The Colorado Classic aims to reimagine bike racing; the Denver Post gives the details on all four stages.

Here’s your spoiler-free result of the first stage.

A Denver TV station says the presence of the Rwandan cycling team at the Colorado Classic sends a message of inspiration and hope, even if they’re not expected to win any stages.

Ex-Tour de France winner Floyd Landis says banning Lance’s podcast is just being petty, as he prepares to return to mountain bike racing at the Leadville 100 with his Floyd’s of Leadville medicinal dope partner Dave Zabriskie.

Cycling great Andre Greipel says he’s lost all his instincts on the bike.

The Guardian offers a beautiful photo essay examining the 2,400-mile Transcontinental bike race across Europe.

……….

Local

Maybe one day your summer bike rides could be a bit cooler, as Los Angeles experiments with changing the surface color of streets to reduce roadway temperatures.

Great profile of 16-year old Los Angeles public transit enthusiast Kenny Uong.

CiclaValley discovers the San Fernando Valley’s secret climb.

Helen’s Cycles is sponsoring a trio of rides throughout the LA area tomorrow.

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson offers his own inimitable advice on commuting to work.

The South Bay’s Easy Reader News credits the removal of the Herondo wall on the Hermosa border and widening the bike path with opening the entrance to Redondo Beach, leading to a boom in business along Harbor Drive. So much for bike lanes killing business, as the above lawsuit asserts, as well as the “fat bike lanes” in the manifesto.

 

State

Residents insist that traffic congestion is a nightmare in Lytle Creek, even without any road diets or bike lanes. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

Caught on video: A San Francisco bike rider is sent flying when he apparently hits a curb after swerving to avoid an SUV that left-crossed him.

A San Francisco website says there ain’t no party like an East Bay Bike Party.

A 74-year old Healdsburg man will face a misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter charge for an unsafe pass that apparently caused a women to fall off her bike during a charity ride.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a specialized bicycle from a Navy vet who was using it to recover from paralysis, after he was shot in the head while serving in Afghanistan.

Violent crime is increasing on a Sacramento bike path with one of the region’s highest concentrations of chronically homeless people; one rider reported getting punched in the jaw just for being there.

 

National

Streetsblog asks why cities shouldn’t fund student bikeshare passes like they do transit passes.

No surprise here. A new study showed that adult-supervised bike trains to and from school increased physical activity for kids, providing 35% of their daily recommended exercise.

Seattle discovers the most effective way to cut solo car commutes is charging for parking by the day, rather than by the month. Just imagine if they combined that with safer streets to encourage more walking and biking at the same time.

Speaking of Seattle, the city’s limited experiment with dockless bikeshare doubled to a total of 2,000 bikes this week, and could double again when two more suppliers hit the streets. My apologies to whoever sent this; unfortunately, I’ve lost track of where I got this story. But thank you anyway.

Caught on video too: A safety conscious Spokane burglar straps on a helmet before riding off with a homeowner’s bike, while ghost riding another.

Good idea. A Kalamazoo MI bike club printed and distributed 100 lawn signs to promote the city’s five-foot passing law.

The Pennsylvania bicyclist on trial for obstructing traffic testified that he was simply riding in the center of the lane to avoid debris on the right and prevent unsafe passing.

A tone-deaf Atlantic City editorial says bicyclists have to ride responsibly to protect themselves from distracted drivers. Which is probably true. But wearing a bike helmet isn’t likely to prevent a collision. And even the brightest hi-viz and lights won’t help if someone is looking at his or her lap instead of the road.

Emmy nominee Keri Russell is one of us, as a fellow bike rider strikes up a conversation about her show The Americans as she waited at a Brooklyn stop light. A) Conversations like that never happen when you’re in a car, and B) it’s proof that bicyclists really do stop for red lights.

Leonardo DiCaprio is still one of us, and still riding bikeshare bikes across New York. No word on whether he stopped for stop lights or paused to speak with any other bike riders, however.

A New York lawyer goes looking for video of the hit-and-run that put a bike rider in the hospital, and finds a city-owned truck with damage matching the one that hit her.

 

International

A 16-year old Calgary boy has raised $8,000 to fight cancer as part of a 124-mile charity ride, four years after an eye exam lead to the discovery of a baseball-sized tumor in his brain.

Edmonton, Canada is testing side guards on trucks to protect cyclists and pedestrians.

Toronto developers are starting to build carfree, bike-only condos.

The sister of a fallen teenage bike rider lashes out at young Brit riders who put their lives at risk by pulling stunts in front of cars. Although you’d think she’d blame the stoned driver who killed him, instead.

Caught on video three: A Dublin bike mechanic tackles a bike thief who tried to make off with his bike after he leaned it against a wall for a few moments.

The mayor of Melbourne, Australia threatens to deal with the problem of abandoned dockless bikeshare bikes by banning them entirely.

 

Finally…

Why bother biking to work or slogging through traffic when you can just swim. You could do worse than the Sneaky Cyclist Robber, as far as bank robber epithets go.

And a mountain biker tries to take a $149 Walmart bike down some steep singletrack, with predictable results.

Morning Links: A struggle for lights on the Orange Line bike path, and more Playa del Rey road diet madness

Maybe someone can find a solution to this one.

Last week I was forwarded an email from Robert Cable, asking for help solving a seemingly intractable problem getting help with a dark and dangerous section of the Orange Line bike path.

He gave me permission to share this in hopes that someone who reads it might be able to point him to some person, anyone, who could help get lights installed and make the Orange Line bikeway a safer and more practical alternative for people who commute after dark.

Especially in light of the many homeless encampments now dotting — and sometimes blocking — the San Fernando Valley’s longest and most important east-west bikeway.

And after getting bounced repeatedly between Metro, the city, the county, the local councilmember’s office, and back again.

My name is Robert Cable.  I had the good fortune to meet with several LAPD officers over the past two days.  They suggested I reach out to you after I told them how I tried to get some lighting installed on a short stretch of the Orange Line Bike Path but was completely shot down by my district reps.

Most of the path from Chandler to the 405, and then west of White Oak has lighting.  There is one area just west of the 405 at Haskell to Balboa (but mostly to Woodley) that is unlit and gets extremely dark at night.  The path is set back from Victory, rides thru areas of thick trees, has low visibility and feels unsafe for many reasons.  Additionally, along with the lack of lighting, lights from oncoming cars makes it even more difficult to see.

Originally, after reaching out to District 6 for help, Lauren Padick told me it was metro’s jurisdiction.  Metro responded that it was city.  After going back to Padick with that information, she immediately responded, and I am talking two minutes, with this,

Robert,

“There is no existing poles besides Metro’s. At this point, the City would be unable to install lighting.”

Since then, I learned that a colleague of mine who also commutes by bike, departs the bike path at that section and rides in the street.  Well it turns out that one night, he was hit by a car over there as a direct result of feeling unsafe on the path.

So, who can help me?  Who can I contact about this?  There is no reason that a small, less then half mile stretch of path shouldn’t have the same lighting as the rest of the run.  Coincidentally, I believe this to be the same area where the Rabbi whose family sued and settled a multi million dollar suit with the city, was hit.  Lastly, Hotchkiss thought that solar lights, like those installed in Glendale would be a good solution.

Many thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

Best,

Robert Cable

………

The LA Weekly looks at the insanity in Playa del Rey, where Mike Bonin announced Wednesday that Vista del Mar will be returned to two lanes in each direction.

KPCC’s Take Two talks with Bonin about traffic safety, and why the changes on Vista del Mar had to be made right away, in an unusually balanced report.

The Daily Breeze notes that this weekend’s planned meeting to discuss the lane reductions has been postponed until further notice.

And The Argonaut reports on KFI shock jocks John and Ken’s efforts to trim up anger over the road changes with a rally in Playa del Rey last week.

………

Great news, as Italian cyclist Claudia Cretti has awakened from a medically induced coma and starting to recover from the near-fatal brain injury she suffered in a crash during the Giro Rosa earlier this month.

Chris Froome targets rare back-to-back titles, competing in next month’s Vuelta after winning the Tour de France for the fourth time.

Twenty years after winning the Tour, Jan Ullrich suggests cycling’s doping past is just that. Or maybe they’ve just gotten better at hiding it.

Next month’s inaugural Colorado Classic will feature second place Tour de France finisher Rigoberto Uran, Taylor Phinney and other top riders.

Cycling in the South Bay looks forward to Sunday’s 56th Manhattan Beach Grand Prix.

……….

Local

This year’s AIDS/LifeCycle Ride brought in $15.1 million for the HIV/AIDS services at the Los Angeles LGBT Center and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation.

LA Curbed looks at Gil Cedillo’s efforts to effectively ban road diets by any name in his district.

The LACBC provides a wrap-up on last year’s successful Operation Firefly light distribution program.

 

State

After an eight-year old boy was killed riding his bike in Newport Heights last year, residents chose sidewalk improvements over a bike lane, condemning 35 trees to death.

No bias here. It wasn’t a bicyclist who bit and attempt to rob a San Diego woman at gunpoint; it was a thief who happened to be riding a bike.

A San Diego review board rules sheriff’s deputies were justified in shooting an unarmed ex-con as he worked on his bicycle in his own garage, even though deputies gave three different versions of what happened.

An anonymous artist is decorating an abandoned bicycle in Northern San Luis Obispo County.

Former LACBC Executive Director Tamika Butler will be the keynote speaker at the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition’s annual Bike Summit next month.

Vallejo police arrested a man on a charge of vehicular manslaughter for killing a 16-year old boy as he and his dad were riding their bikes together two weeks ago.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to offer bicycling advice.

The Bike League looks at the many problems with the new Oregon bike tax.

A writer for the Chicago Tribune goes mountain biking in Moab, Utah.

A Colorado newspaper says maybe bikes should be taxed at $25 or $50 a year, with the funds dedicated to building and maintaining bikeways. Except an annual fee — especially that high — would only serve to discourage more people from bicycling, and result in more unused bikes remaining in garages.

A Houston driver describes the attack by a bicyclist who allegedly scratched the man’s car with his bike, then reached in and beat him through an open window. While violence is never the answer, something tells me there’s another side to this story; a violent attack on a totally innocent driver just doesn’t add up.

A trio of Texas brothers finish a 52-day, 3,500 mile ride across the US to raise funds for charity.

This is what heroes look like. A Chicago firefighter is retiring after 27 years on the job, and 25 years after starting a program that promised kids a refurbished bicycle if they came in with a report card showing good grades and perfect attendance — boosting attendance at a local school from 20% to 92% in a single year.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a recumbent tricycle from an Illinois teenager suffering from a degenerative muscular disorder.

After just 30 days of sobriety, a recovering Kentucky junkie is riding his bike 500 miles to DC with his mother to call for an end to the opioid epidemic.

A Rhode Island public service campaign suggests waving at others on the roads to improve safety. At least if they wave back, you know they’ve seen you. Unless they’re waving at someone behind you.

New York Streetsblog says ticketing bike riders after a man was killed riding his bike isn’t doing anything to fix the dangerous streets.

He gets it. Instead of just calling for more bike helmets, a New York chief of emergency medicine says the best way to prevent traumatic brain injuries is to slow traffic, as well as improving lighting, widening medians and building more bike lanes.

A financial writer goes for a New York bikeshare ride with non-obnoxious cyclist and hedge fund founder Mark Carhart, who spends his spare time riding tandems with blind bicyclists.

If you build it, they will come. When Macon GA installed a temporary eight-mile bike lane network, average ridership shot up over 800%.

 

International

A Canadian woman says riding solo around the world is seldom lonely.

London’s transportation department announced it will spend the equivalent of $112 million dollars on creating livable streets, with an emphasis on transportation cycling.

A British couple is celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary, after choosing a wedding over buying a bicycle. Tough choice, but it seems to have worked out okay.

A new survey shows riding a bike on the sidewalk ranked number seven on a list of the top minor laws broken by people in the UK; riding through a red light only ranked 35th out of 40. Number one was singing Happy Birthday in a public restaurant.

The Washington Post goes for a birthday ride along the Danube.

 

Finally…

More proof you can use a bike to commute from work — even if your work is robbing banks. Evidently, bike theft is as old as bicycling.

And if you’re going to steal a bicycle, you might as well leave your old one in its place.

After all, it’s only polite.

………

Photo of Orange Line bike path taken from the LADOT Bike Blog.

 

Morning Links: Playa del Rey road reversal, Cedillo tries to gut Vision Zero, and zero speed for no hand driving

Evidently, the angry drivers in Playa del Rey have made themselves heard.

CD 11 Councilmember Mike Bonin took the unusual step of offering a public apology to people inconvenienced by the road diets in Playa del Rey, while announcing steps to alleviate their anger.

Hopefully, anyway.

Bonin announced an agreement with LA County Commissioner Janice Hahn that will allow “free or affordable” street parking in the county parking lot at Dockweiler Beach, enabling the city to eliminate street parking on Vista del Mar and restore the street to two lanes in each direction.

The city had moved parking to the beach side of the street after being warned by the City Attorney that it would face continued liability if people had to cross the busy roadway after parking on the opposite side, after paying out $9.5 million for the death of a 16-year old girl in 2015.

He also announced the formation of a Playa del Rey Road Safety Task Force, made up of both supporters and opponents of the lane reduction projects, charged with finding solutions to traffic safety problems in the area.

Maybe now the people opposed to the project will take a breath and calm down a little.

And while they’re at it, maybe the city can remove those nonexistent bike lanes that opponents keep insisting were the reason for the road diet on Vista del Mar.

………

While Bonin is focused on saving lives by implementing Vision Zero, CD1’s “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo appears intent on keeping his nickname intact, and his district dangerous.

Cedillo filed a motion with the city council (scroll down) that would make a handful of pedestrian safety improvements, while gutting Vision Zero by halting all “road diets, lane removals and/or lane reductions” in his district without his personal stamp of approval.

This comes after his earlier failed attempt to get the council to remove all the bike lanes planned for his entire district from the city’s mobility plan.

The question is whether he really hates bike riders that much. Or if he just lacks Bonin’s courage to face up to angry drivers.

Or more likely, both.

Thanks to Bike the Vote LA for the heads-up.

………

A California appellate court rules that the basic speed law applies to conditions inside the vehicle as well as outside.

And that the appropriate speed when driving with a cigarette in one hand and a cellphone in the other, with no hands on the steering wheel, is zero.

Thanks to Jonathan Weiss for the link.

………

Sad news, as former two-time European cycling champ Reg Arnold passed away at age 92.

An Op-Ed in Cycling Tips says when the press goes soft on doping, it only serves to normalize it.

Bicycling list seven sort-of-bold predictions for next year’s Tour de France.

……….

Local

Work is under way on a much-needed new community plan for Hollywood, including plans to make Hollywood Blvd, Edgemont Street, Finley Avenue, Rowena Avenue and Los Feliz Boulevard more bike and pedestrian friendly.

CiclaValley says Vancouver could be a model for Los Angeles.

An anti-growth columnist in Santa Monica says build more affordable housing — somewhere else. And uses kids, the disabled and the elderly as an excuse to maintain the city’s failed auto-centric policies. Never mind that kids, the disabled and older people benefit from walkable, bikeable streets as much as anyone, if not more. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the tip.

The Acorn profiles the Conejo Valley’s coed, all-level Stonehaus Cycling Club, established by the founder of what would become the Amgen Tour of California.

 

State

Laguna Beach unveils new stairs leading to the beach, complete with bike parking.

The bikelash has spread to San Diego’s Hillcrest neighborhood, where merchants would rather have a few dozen parking spaces than business from customers who arrive by bike, and residents can’t figure out what those bicycle symbols on the street mean. Here’s a thought — if bike lanes and sharrows confuse you, either find out what the hell they are or park your car, and leave it there. Permanently.

The bike-riding San Diego man accused of murdering four homeless men has been found mentally incompetent to stand trial.

The annual week-long Big Bear Cycling Festival begins this Sunday.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 69-year old Cambria cyclist has done a century ride every month for 100 months, and plans to keep it up until he’s 70.

A allegedly drunk Harley rider plowed into a group of up to 20 Fresno cyclists on a club ride Monday evening, sending three riders to the hospital with major injuries; the motorcyclist faces a pair of felony DUI charges. Hats off to the Fresno Bee for getting it right by reporting the victims were wearing helmets, but that those weren’t enough to keep them safe.

This is who we share the roads with. An 18-year old Fresno woman faces multiple felony counts for the fatal DUI crash that took the life of her sister, which she livestreamed as it happened.

A San Francisco ride will follow the route of the original, two-day AIDS Ride over 30 years ago.

 

National

Tillamook OR tries a bike lane protected by angled parking to give riders adequate road space. Although judging by the photo, there’s not much left after drivers nose over the limit line.

Washington state has banned handheld cellphones while driving, or even resting your hand on a phone at a red light. But doesn’t do anything about hands-free cellphone use, which studies show is just as dangerous.

Bicyclists in Colorado Springs CO have noticed an increase in angry and dangerous drivers in recent years.

No surprise here. A new Wisconsin study shows that investing in infrastructure and policies to encourage bicycling and walking results correlates with improved bike and pedestrian safety. And not doing it correlates to worse safety figures.

New Hampshire Public Radio discusses the state of cycling in the Granite State.

Boston unveils a new Vision Zero website that allows people to individually report safety concerns pinpointed on a crowdsourced map.

An Op-Ed in the New York Daily News says lay off ebikes — which are bizarrely banned in the city — and target reckless cars. But even when they get it right, they get it wrong — cars aren’t reckless, their drivers are.

 

International

Columbian pro golfer Camilo Villegas is one of us, taking advantage of his “obsessive cycling disorder” to deal with stress. So evidently, cycling is the new golf, and golf is the new cycling.

Kelly Ripa is one of us, running into a bear as she rides with her family in British Columbia.

A parking cop in Toronto takes to Twitter to embarrass people who park in bike lanes. And it works.

A Toronto Op-Ed says pedestrians take precedence in complete communities, and more young people are choosing to forgo driving in favor of walking, biking and transit.

Campaigns to get more British women bicycling have paid off, with nearly three-quarter of a million more women riding than in 2013.

A man in the UK rode his bicycle three days to attend a court hearing on a charge of riding his bike on a freeway, and pled guilty to avoid another three-day trip back for a trial. Pro tip: If police try to stop you for a traffic violation, probably best not to tell them to fuck off, and refer to them by a slang term for female genitalia.

An Aussie rider says you get what you give, so don’t be the jerk who runs a red light on his bike.

 

Finally…

One more reason you should do your cycling outside. If you’re going to steal a high-end racing bike, at least dress for the part.

And who needs a moving van when you’ve got a bicycle?

 

Morning Links: Playa del Rey non-traffic, 30-second delay on Venice Blvd, and more City Watch inanity

After all the horror stories, a rare moment of clarity in Playa del Rey.

If you’ve been following the news, you’ve undoubtedly heard motorists ranting that the recent road diets in Playa del Rey have been an unmitigated disaster. Resulting, they swear, in endless traffic backups that have cost people their jobs and stolen time from their families.

Maybe not so fast.

It’s always possible that Jon Phillips happened to ride Culver Blvd through Playa del Rey on an exceptionally light traffic night. Or maybe those horrendous traffic backups had dissipated by the time he rode through at 6 pm.

But other than a brief backup caused by the traffic light at the transition from Jefferson to Culver, it’s nowhere to be seen on the bike cam video he captured Monday evening, as he rode from Jefferson and Lincoln to Vista del Mar on Culver Blvd.

………

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton attended Saturday’s workshop to discuss the Venice Blvd Great Streets project in Mar Vista, where LADOT revealed the changes to the road have increased evening peak travel times by just 30 seconds, and not at all in the morning.

Which, unsurprisingly, commenters to the story promptly called fake news.

It’s one of the major problems in American society these days that far too many people are willing to throw actual research and facts out the window, and refuse believe anything that contradicts their own prejudices.

And anyone who has ever driven a car — or ridden in one, apparently — seems to consider themselves experts in traffic planning.

………

The hack jobs go on at City Watch, where a pair of reading-for-comprehension challenged columnists take issue with the scoring system used by Vision Zero LA, which gives more weight to injuries and deaths of people on foot or bikes than in cars.

So why are traffic collisions involving vulnerable road users considered more important than motor vehicle crashes?

Because, according to Vision Zero, “They account for roughly 15% of all collisions, but approximately 50% of all deaths.” Or in other words, are a little more than three times as likely to be fatal.

Which is right in the second paragraph of the page these self-appointed transparency advocates link to that explains how the scoring system was used.

Evidently, they missed that part.

………

Business Insider says credit Chris Froome’s four Tour de France victories on his unique physiology, while a writer for the Irish Times says don’t count on him making it five.

A Canadian cycling magazine offers a post Tour wrap-up.

A sprinter loses his shot at victory in an Oregon bike race when the men’s field catches up to the women near the finish line, and he collides with another rider.

Bicycling looks at the rich history of the cycling jersey.

……….

Local

An urbanist website looks at the expansion of bikeshare and parking-protected bike lanes in DTLA.

The Better Bike Share partnership offers an exit interview with the LACBC’s outgoing Executive Director Tamika Butler. Speaking of which, you still have a few weeks to get your resume in to replace her.

Every superhero has an origin story. The LACBC’s Zachary Rynew, aka CiclaValley, tells how he really became a cyclist. And gives this site some of the blame credit for inspiring him.

The Pasadena Star-News suggests bike theft — or mangling a bike trying to steal it — is apparently just part of the problems on the Gold Line. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Santa Monica city officials explain how they go carfree at least some of the time. Note to Santa Monica Lookout: If SaMo is boldly moving into the post WWII era, they’re only about 70 years too late.

Plans to revamp the failing South Bay Galleria in Redondo Beach include better bicycle and pedestrian access.

The CEO of the Union Rescue Mission rode his bike from LA’s Skid Row to Sacramento to call attention to homelessness, despite losing a leg to flesh eating bacteria last year.

 

State

San Diego is dealing with the problem of bad data from cameras that are supposed to automatically count bike riders.

A Napa teenager arrived at the US – Mexico border, completing a 1,000-mile bike journey down the California coast to raise money for the families of fallen police officers.

The Ventura County Star urges local cities to follow Ventura and the county’s lead in making bicycling and bike lanes a priority.

Sad news from Salinas, where a 60-year old man died two months after he was hit by a car while riding his bike; he initially refused treatment, saying he wasn’t injured. This is why you always assume you’re hurt following any collision or serious fall; serious injuries — especially internal injuries — may not be apparent in the immediate aftermath of a crash.

Bad dog! A Riverside bike rider t-boned a pickup truck while trying to escape from the two-year old German shepherd that was chasing him; the victim suffered a compound leg fracture.

The East Bay parks district will allow ebikes on some recreational trails on a trial basis.

 

National

NPR says instead of getting self-driving cars to recognize bicyclists, bicycles may need to signal their existence to the cars.

Bicycling examines bike helmets, and what you get at every price point. For $300, the damn thing had better come with a full body flak jacket that drops down in the event of a collision. Or maybe a force field.

The next time you go mountain biking, try riding on wood, not just through woods.

The editor of Bike Portland shares his views on the new Oregon bike tax. Meanwhile, Portland may be the first US city to offer an adaptive bikeshare for people with disabilities.

A tech website compares Seattle’s new LimeBike and Spin dockless bikeshare systems, while a local newspaper looks at LimeBike’s entrance to Key Biscayne FL.

Thanks to Donald Trump, Utah’s Bear’s Ears National Monument is becoming a more popular mountain biking destination.

An Austin TX hotel and bar are both facing lawsuits for serving an intoxicated woman who then got in her car and critically injured a woman riding her bicycle. Unfortunately, under California law, bars and restaurants can’t be held responsible for serving drunks who go out and kill or injure someone here. Thanks to Steve Katz for the link.

A Texas man says he was the victim of a road raging bicyclist, who he says circled back to attack him after he slowed to wave at a friend. Which kind of stretches credibility, though it is possible the rider may have misinterpreted the gesture; either way, just don’t. Period.

Chicago’s elevated 606 Trail bikeway and green space turns one year old, while Dayton OH is considering an elevated rail-to-trail park and bikeway, even if the possible completion is years away.

Must have been a heavy bike. J. Patrick Lynch forwards news that an Illinois cop will receive lifetime disability benefits after injuring his back picking up a bicycle.

This is who we share the roads with. A road-raging 19-year old Michigan dirt bike rider was sentenced to up to 100 years in prison for beating a driver to death after arguing with him.

 

International

A Canadian researcher deconstructs the way the press reports on fatal crashes involving bicyclists, subtly shifting the blame away from the driver. Like in this one, for instance.

An Ottawa, Canada bike rider says keep your head up, so you don’t crash into other riders. Like her, for instance.

A Montreal man posted the bloodied end results of the hit-and-run involving his bike-riding mom, adding, “We would love to catch the dirt bag who thinks it’s OK to leave a bleeding woman they just hit on the street.” Which is pretty much how most of us feel about any hit-and-run.

Glasgow bike cops are caught riding on the sidewalk, even though bikes are banned on them. Sort of like the sidewalk-riding bicycling meter readers in downtown Beverly Hills.

This is why you don’t confront bike thieves yourself. A Dublin teenager pled guilty to smashing the owner of a bicycle with a hammer when he tried to stop the teen from stealing his bike.

Speaking of Dublin, bike advocates are complaining about the local tram company’s video criticizing bicyclists, accusing it of covering up for calls to improve the safety of its tracks.

Police confiscated 225 bicycles for riding on the highway in Dubai, where it’s illegal to ride a bike on any road with a speed limit over 37 mph.

 

Finally…

Riding on railroad tracks is stupid; especially when there’s a train between them and your bike. Pro tip: If police bust you for carrying a concealed weapon on your bicycle, along with a backpack full of meth, hydrocodone, Clonazepam, morphine, needles and a scale, always claim you just found it a few blocks away.

And don’t run down the person you think stole your bike.

Especially if it’s not really your bike.

 

Weekend Links: Lawsuit madness in Playa del Rey, walking a bike through G20 riots, and Saturday bike videos

Amidst all the madness, we’re starting to see a few glimmers of sanity.

And more madness.

Wealthy Playa del Rey townhouse owners have filed the first of what may be the first of many lawsuits over the safety improvements in the area, claiming the city failed to file an Environmental Impact Report because they knew it would be unpopular.

Although their lawyer seems a tad confused, claiming the changes on Vista del Mar were made to benefit a handful recreational bike riders. Even though there are no bike lanes on Vista del Mar.

And the changes have made it worse, not better, for cyclists using the roadway.

Meanwhile, Manhattan Beach continues to threaten to sue, while apparently laboring under the same misconception that a bike lane was added on Vista del Mar.

The irony is that the city alleges the lack of advance notice before implementing the road reconfigurations violated the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA. But no one seems to consider the environmental damage done by the unsustainable commutes of countless solo drivers who insist on living in the wealthy beach community while working miles away in LA and Santa Monica.

And expect the people of Los Angeles to put up with it without complaint. Or concerns for their own safety.

Surprisingly, the sanity comes in two pieces written for City Watch, which is more often a home for the bike-hating trolls, or just the very strange.

A member of the Mar Vista Community Council says, despite his personal opposition to the Venice Great Streets Project, the uproar means they have to do their jobs, and find a solution that works for everyone.

And the former president of the East Hollywood Neighborhood Council says it’s time for everyone to just calm down, and if you can’t abide the presence of another human being on the roadway, move to South Dakota already.

Although I suspect the people in South Dakota might just send them back.

Meanwhile, a Santa Monica writer belatedly discovers the Venice Great Streets project while somehow blaming CicLAvia for it, and suggests that its members can show up for meetings because they don’t have jobs.

Never mind that CicLAvia had absolutely nothing to do with the project other than hosting a pop-up demonstration, and bike riders who supported the project have jobs, too. Just like real people.

Seriously, though, you have to admire someone who’s not afraid to show he doesn’t have the slightest clue what he’s writing about.

Do you see a bike lane here? Both photos by Joni Yung.

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Megan Lynch forwards an extraordinary series of photos taken by photographer Thomas Lohnes, which appear to show 60-year old historian Martin Bühler calmly walking his bike through the recent G20 protests in Hamburg, Germany as police fire water canons around him.

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CiclaValley shares a look at a driver who insisted on passing, even after being warned there was no room to do it safely. Which is something most of us have experienced far too often.

Although his choice of language is much milder than mine has been in similar situations.

However, no such language is needed in this video depicting a day in the life of an LA Brompton rider. My apologies are in order, though, since I’ve lost track of who sent this one to me. But thank you, anyway.

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The Tour de France is starting to get interesting, as Chris Froome is no longer looking invincible. America’s last remaining Tour de France winner says all is not well at Team Sky.

Alberto Contador overcame injuries to attack on Friday.

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Local

The Southern California Association of Governments, aka SCAG, was awarded the 2017 Transportation Planning Excellence Award for its Go Human campaign.

The next Draft: LA Meetup, sponsored by People For Bikes, will be held this Thursday at Pure Cycles in Burbank. But no, it will not last for 27 hours.

A Burbank letter writer says he always rides his bike as far to the right as safely possible, and gets irritated at bike riders who don’t when he’s behind the wheel. In other words, he turns into an angry driver when he sees bicyclists riding safely in the center of the lane, just like they’re supposed to, because that’s not the way he does it.

You can now use your Metro Bike membership in the Rose City, as Metro’s bikeshare system officially opens in Pasadena. Boyonabike welcomes the program to his hometown.

Santa Monica is now considering installing more physical barriers to create protected bike lanes.

This Sunday marks the Whittier Walk & Roll Open Streets event, a four hour, six mile carfree festival.

 

State

Irvine plans to close a 1.2 mile gap in the Jeffrey Open Space Trail, including a new bridge over the 5 Freeway.

An Op-Ed in the San Diego Union-Tribune says the city’s bike commuting plan faces a bumpy road from reluctant commuters, and people who prefer parking to bike lanes. And seemingly expect bike traffic to somehow appear overnight when lanes are built.

A San Diego judge orders a competency hearing for a homeless man accused of striking several people in the back of the head while riding his bike, killing an 83-year old woman.

San Francisco is installing parking-protected bike lanes on two streets to provide a quick safety fix.

Oakland will celebrate bikes this weekend with the Jack London Square Pedalfest, including amphibious bike races.

Bad news from Vallejo, where a father and son were run down from behind by the driver of a pickup, leaving the teenager fighting for his life.

A Sacramento athlete is overcoming his cerebral palsy to compete in a triathlon this weekend.

 

National

NASCAR’s Ryan Newman doesn’t get the whole race driver cycling craze, preferring to work on his farm when he’s not driving.

Milwaukee moves forward with its first bike boulevards. Too bad you can’t say the same about Los Angeles.

Police are looking for a bike raging Chicago rider who put a rock through the window of a BMW after the driver accused him of scratching his car. As tempting as it can be sometimes, just don’t. Period.

A New York man makes his escape on a Citi Bike bikeshare bike after fatally shooting a man.

Residents of an Atlanta neighborhood are angry after the city ripped up a one-year old bike path for no apparent reason, after they’d fought for it for eight years.

A Florida letter writer gets it, telling drivers to calm down, put their phones down and pay attention when they see someone on a bike.

 

International

You think? Gizmodo says maybe dockless bikeshare isn’t a good idea, as abandoned bikes turn up everywhere.

Modacity looks at the insanity of licensing bicyclists, especially when it comes to kids.

Spend your next bike vacation touring Cuba.

The Calgary mountain biker who claimed to have been clotheslined by barbed wire strung over a trail says people have turned on him, questioning the legitimacy of his story — and his now-closed crowdfunding campaign.

Probably wasn’t the best idea. A British headmaster is looking for a new job after calling in sick so he could go on a charity bike ride in Cuba.

A Welsh cyclist got a medal for finishing a charity ride, despite getting lost and ending up riding with the pro cyclists. And so did his dog.

A South African cyclist is on trial for an alleged bike rage attack on two motorists; he claims the driver had “been impatient” with other bicyclists and made him fall off his bike. This is what happens when you can’t control your temper; instead of holding an impatient driver accountable, it’s the guy on the bike who’s facing jail time.

The New York Times examines why people on bicycles inspire such animosity in Australia. And pretty much anywhere else. Thanks to Victor Bank for the heads-up.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be a fire truck. Or maybe a $10,000 eco-friendly wooden bike made with no-so-eco-friendly carbon fiber. Or just effing weird.

And new anti-lock bike brakes could promise an end to the endo.

 

Morning Links: Mar Vista votes to keep road diet, and Manhattan Beach still not happy with Playa del Rey changes

Two up, two down.

Following the lead of the Venice Neighborhood Council, the Mar Vista Community Council voted Tuesday night to keep the Venice Blvd Great Streets project in place.

The board also called for continued study of the project, which removed one traffic lane in each direction on Venice Blvd, while adding parking-protected bike lanes on either side.

And as Rabi Abonour pointed out, even the opponents of the project professed their love for bikes, if not the people on them, before spouting their vehement opposition.

According to Councilmember Mike Bonin, the first round of data for the Venice Blvd Great Streets project will be presented in a public meeting on Saturday the 22nd.

Evidently, some of the media attended a different meeting, though.

Even though reports were that comments were evenly divided between supporters and opponents of the Great Streets project, KABC-7 apparently only heard — or cared — about the people up in arms over it, falsely reporting that Mar Vista residents strongly opposed it.

Fox-11 was a little more balanced in their reporting, however.

Meanwhile, KCBS-2 got the whole concept of Great Streets wrong, insisting that the plan was to conduct a road diet and add bike lanes and parking on one major thoroughfare in every council district throughout the city.

While there will be a Great Streets project in each district, it’s a community-driven process, and up to local residents to decide just what changes to make.

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Needless to say, Manhattan Beach isn’t satisfied with the change to the Play del Rey lane reconfigurations to reduce traffic congestion, preferring that LA rip out exactly the kind of road diets they use in their own city.

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You’ve got to be kidding.

The driver charged in the Tennessee hit-and-run caught on video over the weekend claims he never saw the victim, and didn’t even know he’d hit anyone until he got home and started receiving death threats.

Although given the force of that impact, you’d have to question whether the driver would have to have been in some sort of altered state to not even notice the crash.

Meanwhile, cyclists aren’t letting the incident stop them from riding the 444-mile Natchez Trace Parkway, where the wreck occurred.

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A great new British TV spot tries to encourage grown ups to get back on their bikes.

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A pair of British publications remember fallen cyclist Tom Simpson on the 50th anniversary of his death on Mont Ventoux during the 1967 Tour de France.

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner says the hell with unwritten rules, cyclists should attack if anything happens to the race leader during a stage, or sponsors should demand their money back.

Peter Sagan got booted from the Tour de France for what may have been an inadvertent elbow thrown at Mark Cavendish, but France’s Nacer Bouhanni just got a lousy $216 fine for actually punching Kiwi cyclist Jack Bauer.

Afghan sisters Masouma and Zahra Alizada have joined a French cycling team. Not were bought, as the headline says; slavery remains illegal, even in cycling.

Atascadero’s Brian Lucido won the 2,800-mile Great Divide Mountain Bike Race in 14 days, 23 hours.

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Local

KCET reports the recently approved $100 million in state funds completes a trifecta of funding for LA River improvements, much of which will go towards parks and completing the bike path.

Santa Clarita installs new wayfinding signs on local bike and pedestrian trails.

The rich get richer. Bike-friendly Santa Monica is spending nearly $500,000 to improve bike and pedestrian access on the main road leading through the Santa Monica airport, including new sidewalks and a two-way cycle track.

A Redondo Beach woman has taken it on herself to throw away the ghost bike and memorials to 13-year old fallen bike rider Ciara Smith, forcing friends to replace it twice — apparently because it was blocking a sign designating PCH as the Vietnam Memorial Highway.

 

State

California commute times are the longest in the nation. Which may be the best argument yet for riding a bike.

Parking in bike lanes poses a danger to more than just people on bikes. A San Diego man is dead after crashing his car into the back of a semi illegally parked in a bike lane and extending out into the traffic lane.

San Francisco votes to move forward with bike lanes on upper Market Street over the objections of a citizen watchdog who tried to halt them, citing concerns over fire safety.

San Francisco approves rules for dockless bikeshare systems.

 

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss and adventurer Brendan Leonard will begin writing weekly columns for Outside Magazine.

Hawaii’s visually impaired Bike Man costumed superhero rides to the top of the 4,200-foot Mauna Kea volcano.

An Oregon bike shop owner says the state’s new bicycle tax will be bad for business, even if it only adds $15 to the cost of any bike over $200.

A South Korean bike tourist feels showered with support when Portland residents pitch in to help after his bike and all his gear was stolen in the city.

Seattle residents debate a hypothetical and highly impractical bicyclist licensing scheme.

A bike-riding Las Vegas thief wins the ingenuity award for using a pole to steal a woman’s purse off the kitchen counter through the doggie door.

Denver puts its money where its mouth is, announcing a $2 billion — with a B — Mobility Action Plan designed to get people out of their cars.

A Milwaukee report concludes poorer neighborhoods provide less access to bike trails. Pretty much like virtually every other large city. Including Los Angeles.

A St. Louis nonprofit is nearing 30 years of helping kids earn a free bike.

A Vermont bakery peddles — and pedals — its wares, towing fresh baked goods in bike trailers to hawk on the streets.

A Savannah GA writer says it’s important to remember that safe streets aren’t a luxury, and being able to ride a bike safely is a necessity for many people.

Nice story from Florida, where a group of cyclists pitch in to buy a new bike for a special needs man after his was stolen, even though he frequently clashed with them.

 

International

The Calgary mountain biker who was clotheslined by barbed wire strung at neck level over a riding trail has started a crowdfunding campaign to pay his medical expenses, as well as buy security cameras for the park he was riding in.

London’s Mirror gets it, writing that “using a phone behind the wheel is like doing a Rubik’s cube while juggling shotguns.” And adds that we forget cars are dangerous because we drive them all the time without incident.

Proving that it is in fact possible to enforce a three-foot passing law, a British truck driver was fined the equivalent of over $1,300 after being ticketed for a too-close pass.

A Glasgow mother used social media to track down the teen who stole her son’s bike, and gave him a life lecture and a hug when she posed as a buyer to reclaim it.

The Department of DIY strikes in Dublin, Ireland, where 17 people formed a human chain to keep drivers from parking in a bike lane.

A woman with Type 1 diabetes rode her bike over 11,000 miles from Italy to Singapore to encourage other diabetics to live their dreams.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to be attacked by a road raging driver, at least request the salted caramel. You could one day race a bike in space.

And yes, bicycling can enlarge your labia, for those of you who have one.

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Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for his generous donation to help support this site, and keep bringing you SoCal’s best bike news every morning.

 

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