Tag Archive for West Covina

Morning Links: Agenda 21 raises its ugly head in West Covina, and Complete Streets coming to East LA’s Soto St

They’re on to us, comrades.

With all the craziness in American politics these days, the Agenda 21 crowd had to show up to contest the growth in bike lanes and bicycling sooner or later.

Surprisingly, they popped up in West Covina, despite the highly contentious debate over bike lanes in Mar Vista and Playa del Rey.

For the uninitiated, Agenda 21 was an obscure, voluntary plan developed by the United Nations to promote sustainable development.

But in the hands of the right wing conspiracy theorists, it somehow became a secret plan to undermine American sovereignty and force us out of their cars. Making any attempt at developing bike lanes or promoting transit part of a vast conspiracy for worldwide bike domination.

Take this video.

Please.

Apparently, West Covina’s current effort to develop an active transportation plan is just part of that vast conspiracy.

Which is why it’s so important to email your city councilmembers and county supervisors, and show up for meetings when you can.

Because these people are out there. And rational or not, their votes and voices count just as much as yours.

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A public meeting will be held tonight to discuss a Complete Streets project on Soto Street in East LA.

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The war on bikes goes on.

A 74-year old Kansas man is under arrest for attempting to run a bike rider off the road.

Police in the UK are looking for a passenger who got out of a car, pushed a man off his bicycle, then repeatedly punched him in the head.

And evidently, there’s a war on wheelchairs, too. A Denver man was ticketed after getting hit by a car for taking too long to wheel himself across the crosswalk.

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Clearly, cheating is nothing new in cycling. And there are a lot more ways to do it than just doping.

A transgendered cyclist has won policy concessions from Cycling Canada and UCI to open the way for more participation by trans athletes.

BMC’s Brent Bookwalter should win the Scaramucci Award for the shortest time in the yellow jersey at the Tour of Utah.

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Local

A “serious cyclist” wrote a letter in the LA Times saying he’s glad Mar Vista reversed its decision to create “separate” bike lanes, calling the parking-protected bike lane one of the most dangerous he’s seen. Just one problem — the Vista del Mar road diet in Playa del Rey is being reversed; the protected bike lanes on Venice Blvd in Mar Vista aren’t.

Sign up for a free one-month pass for the Pasadena Metro Bike bikeshare.

Expansion plans for the 710 Freeway in Long Beach pledge to improve access for bicyclists and pedestrians, though a writer for Streetsblog remains skeptical.

 

State

Streetsblog writes more about the state award to extend the Metro bikeshare to USC, South LA and the Expo Line.

New plans call for banning private cars from San Francisco’s Market Street in favor of taxis, buses and sidewalk-level bike lanes.

A Sacramento TV station confirms that yes, it’s illegal to ride salmon.

 

National

Bicycling talks with a bicycle courier who’s working to make bike touring more accessible for deaf cyclists.

Seattle’s new dockless bikeshare systems have proven popular, with both companies recording over 5,000 rides each in the first week, despite being limited to just 500 bikes each.

Distracted bicycling may be a bad idea, but it’s not illegal under a new Washington state law.

Get your resume ready. Advocacy group Bicycle Colorado is looking for a new Executive Director.

Iowa Public radio talks with the oldest female competitive BMX rider in the US.

Bike riders often spot things other people might miss. Like human remains on the side of an Austin TX bike trail, for instance.

Evidently, they take traffic crime seriously in Texas. A hit-and-run driver who killed a Corpus Christi bike rider was sentenced to 35 years — yes, years — in prison, and will have to serve at least half his sentence before being considered for parole. In California, drivers rarely get 35 months for a fatal hit-and-run.

A Chicago weekly allows bicyclists to vent their complaints about their fellow bike riders.

Residents in a Madison WI neighborhood are urging city officials to keep their hands off a popular bike path, and not turn it into a road for motor vehicles.

The Tennessee hit-and-run driver charged with intentionally running down a bike rider on the Natchez Trace Parkway has been released from federal custody on the condition that he not leave the area. Meanwhile, the cyclist who recorded the crash finally got back on his bike this past weekend.

Walking on water may be challenging, but biking across Vermont’s Lake Champlain is doable.

Thieves burglarize a New York ebike shop and steal $10,000 worth of ebikes and electric scooters, even though it’s illegal to ride them in the state.

A New York website accuses the NYPD of having a streak of sadism and doing the opposite of Vision Zero by targeting bike riders in response to crashes involving bicyclists.

Philadelphia begins construction on the city’s first one-way protected bike lane.

The 2.6 mile Laffite Greenway is becoming the heart of the burgeoning New Orleans cycling scene.

 

International

A writer for Bike Radar makes the case against bike bells, saying it can be more polite and helpful to actually say what you’re doing.

Canadian comic artist Kate Beaton is one of us. Thanks to Opus the Poet for the heads-up.

A Montreal mother says if you want to get women like her to ride a bike, the city needs more protected bike lanes, and sharrows just don’t cut it anymore.

A writer for The Guardian says it’s time for Britain to free itself from the chokehold cars have over the country. The same could be said for the US, as well. Or is that just more Agenda 21?

A condolence book for the Manchester bombing victims was carried to the city by bicycle from a town 45 miles away.

When a British man cycling with his wife suffered a heart attack outside a pub, he was saved with a portable defibrillator the patrons had purchased as a wedding present for the owner.

The Financial Times checks in with Mark Beaumont during the Scottish adventurer’s attempt to bike around the world in 80 days, including the dental work done by his performance manager after hitting a pothole near the Mongolian border.

Rihanna teams with Chinese bikeshare provider Ofo to donate bicycles to girls in Malawi to help them get to school. Although Ofo may have a little trademark problem back home.

 

Finally…

Why bother teaching your kids to ride a bike, when you can just pay someone to do it for you? Bad enough to be hit by someone on a bike; worse when it’s your bike.

And now you, too, can win a spot on a pro cycling team without actually riding anywhere.

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Thanks to John Hall for his generous contribution to help support this site.

Morning Links: Nine years for drunken West Covina hit-and-run; suspect wanted in Agoura Hills bike crash

For once, the punishment fits the crime.

The Los Angeles County DA’s office announced Tuesday that 25-year old Presley Danielle Rodriguez was sentenced to nine years in state prison for the drunken, high-speed hit-and run that took the life of 44-year old Jose De Jesus Ruiz Villanoeva as he rode his bike to work in West Covina last October.

She was arrested almost immediately when an officer pulled her over after hearing the crash and discovered the damage to her car, while a second officer discovered Villanoeva’s body.

This sentence comes as a pleasant surprise for an office with a reputation for bargaining away serious penalties just to get a conviction in many bike cases.

Although someone should tell the Daily News to read their own story before writing the headline.

Thanks to DreamWaveDave for the heads-up.

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LA County Sheriff’s deputies are looking for a hit-and-run driver who fled after hitting a woman riding her bike in Agoura Hills.

The victim was severely injured when she was apparently right hooked while riding on Argos Street around 11 am Sunday by a driver turning onto Parkheath Drive.

The suspect is described only as a man driving a late-model black compact car. Anyone with information is urged to call the Malibu Lost Hills Station at 818/878-1808.

Thanks to Chris Willig for the link.

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Sadly, this is exactly how too many bikeways are planned.

Sort of like Paul Koretz’ search for an alternate route for the Westwood Blvd bike lanes, which seems to be proceeding at the same pace as OJ’s search for the real killers.

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Now that’s tough.

Not the bad break — literally and otherwise — that kept track cyclist Missy Erickson of the nascent World Cycling League’s California Wave team from competing in the Rio Olympics.

But Erickson herself, who broke off a cast so she could compete in a race after suffering a broken wrist and collarbone, as well as a Level 3 concussion, when she took a bad fall during a competition.

The league premiers this Friday and Saturday in Carson; Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson seems to think it’s a good idea.

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Local

Once again, Los Angeles tops the rest of the US for the nation’s worst traffic. Maybe that explains why groups like Fix the City are fighting the new Mobility Plan; why change anything when you’re already number one?

Good Magazine talks with the founder of the Ovarian Psychos about their new documentary and riding gentrifiers out of town.

Bike friendly New York restaurant, sandwich shop and butcher The Cannibal is finally slated to open, partially at least, in Culver City next month; the name is based on the great Eddy Merckx, not the Donner Party.

Actor Josh Brolin is one of us, as he rides his single speed cruiser along Santa Monica’s Main Street. Although the British tabloids once again seem most impressed with his biceps.

Will Arnett is one of us, too; he recommends riding a bike through the streets of Venice, calling it the greatest mode of transport.

Call it a non-CicLAvia ciclovía, as Long Beach celebrates its downtown area this Saturday with the city’s second Beach Streets open streets event.

 

State

Costa Mesa’s Orange Coast College plans a pedestrian-free bike and skateboard loop around the campus, while banning riding from other areas.

San Marcos will get a one-third mile Complete Street this year, but not as soon as planned.

A San Diego group has unexpectedly dropped their lawsuit against buffered bike lanes on the city’s 4th and 5th Streets.

A Santa Barbara neighborhood association once again chooses parking over bicycles, threatening to sue if the city doesn’t consider alternatives to a contested bike lane on Micheltorena Street and conduct an environmental impact report. The governor signed a bill in 2013 exempting bike lanes from environmental review, but that hasn’t seemed to stop anyone from suing.

Berkeley officials call for extending a protected bike lane two blocks, a month too late to help a woman who was critically injured while riding her bike there.

Red Kite Prayer visits the Marin Museum of Bicycling.

A columnist for the Davis paper looks at Calbike’s proposal to offer a rebate to anyone who buys a commuter bicycle.

 

National

Evidently, the death of a bicyclist is no big deal in Alaska. An 18-year old hit-and-run driver is allowed to finish her college semester before beginning her prison sentence; she was under the influence when she ran down the victim while driving in reverse down the street following a party.

An anonymous Seattle bike vigilante has earned the moniker Bike Repo Batman for helping theft victims get their bicycles back. Thanks to joninsocal for the tip.

Sad news from Boulder CO as former pro cyclist Phil Zajicek lost an arm in a collision with a flatbed truck; fortunately, he’s expected to survive. Zajicek received a lifetime ban for doping violations in 2011.

Bighearted Michigan cops buy a new bicycle for a five-year old boy who was injured when a car backed over him as he tried to ride around it.

An upstate NY man is making plans for a record-breaking attempt at the world’s biggest classic bike parade; under the rules — yes, there are rules for such things — the bikes must be at least 30 years old, and travel at least two miles. Which means my 1981 Trek would easily make the cut, if I could get it to go that far.

 

International

A sustainable transportation lecturer writing in the Guardian says it’s not enough to reduce speed limits on residential streets to 20 mph; we need to stop cut through traffic — aka rat running — to keep quiet streets quiet.

It’s time to bury the phrase “Share the Road” once and for all when it’s used by auto-centric NIMBY’s to fight a planned London bike superhighway.

A London woman breaks the third date rule, agreeing on her second date to ride around the world promoting education with the man who’s now her fiancé.

It takes a real schmuck to steal a Brit paperboy’s bike as he delivers his paper route.

English bicyclists take safety into their own hands by spray painting a warning on an unsafe bike lane; naturally, county officials respond by calling it vandalism rather than actually doing anything to fix it.

A man in Limerick, Ireland was arrested after riding his bike with a sawed off shotgun looking for people to shoot; he wounded one man and missed another before he was stopped while looking for a third victim.

Mikael Colville-Andersen of Copenhagenize goes on a rant against what he considers bad bikeway designs, insisting that if you don’t see it used in the Netherlands or Denmark, it’s probably a stupid idea.

Yemini women lead the resistance to the country’s civil war by riding bicycles as a symbol of solidarity.

Beijing tries free bikeshare in an attempt to battle the seemingly endless pollution gripping the city.

 

Finally…

We may have to deal with LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to plow our own pathways. Forget PowerBars; try surviving on roadkill on your next bike tour.

And what to ride when an ordinary, sub-$9,000 bike just isn’t good enough.

 

Update: West Covina bicyclist killed in (alleged) drunken late-night hit-and-run

For once, there was a cop around when he was needed.

Unfortunately, it came too late for a bike rider in West Covina last night.

Multiple sources are reporting that a bicyclist was killed in a high-speed hit-and-run just before midnight, and the allegedly drunken driver arrested moments later just a few blocks away.

Forty-four-year old La Puente resident Jose De Jesus Ruiz-Villanueva was riding his bike north on the 1100 block of South Valinda Avenue, just above Merced Avenue, at 11:49 pm when he was hit from behind by a car traveling at a high rate of speed.

A police officer who was writing a report at nearby Melinda Elementary School heard the collision, and gave chase as the driver sped away, he stopped the car on Cameron Ave, where he noticed substantial damage to the vehicle.

According to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, a second officer went back to the scene, and found Ruiz-Villanueva dead at the scene.

The paper reports he had been on his way to work when he was killed.

Police arrested 25-year old Presley Danielle Rodriguez of Glendora on suspicion of felony driving under the influence causing great bodily injury or death and felony hit-and-run. She was booked on $100,000 bail.

Unfortunately, this occurred in Los Angeles County, where cases like this are usually plea bargained away, leaving the drivers to face little or no jail time.

This is the 64th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 25th in Los Angeles County.

Eight of those 25 deaths have been hit-and-runs.

Update: The driver, Presley Danielle Rodriguez, faces up to 15 years in prison on charges of hit-and-run and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. And for a change, the court appears to be taking this case seriously, increasing her bond to $150,000, $50,000 more than prosecutors requested.

The SGV Tribune reports Ruiz-Villanueva was on his way to work at A-1 Power Sweeping Co in Baldwin Park; his bicycle was his only form of transportation. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jose De Jesus Ruiz-Villanueva and his family. 

Bike rider dies after January hit-and-run in West Covina; third bike rider killed in SoCal this year

And then there were three.

The San Gabriel Tribune reports that Emilio Simon, a 50-year old resident of West Covina, died Thursday after fighting for his life for nearly two weeks following a hit-and-run last month.

Simon was walking his bike in the middle of the block across Francisquito Ave just west of California Ave in West Covina around 8:10 pm on January 23rd when he was hit by a westbound SUV.

The driver fled south on Sunset Ave, apparently without stopping, leaving Simon suffering from severe injuries in the street.

The car was described as an older silver Jeep Grand Cherokee, 1997 to 2001; police said it may have damage to the front driver’s side.

Anyone with information is urged to call West Covina police at 626/939-8500, or 24-hour tip line at 626/939-8688.

Let’s catch this jerk.

This is the third bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in LA County; that compares to six in the county this time last year.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Emilio Simon and his family. 

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