Tag Archive for York Blvd

Morning Links: LA River bike path gets greener, more on Gardena shooting, and analysis of York Blvd bike wrecks

Great news for anyone who rides the LA River bike path.

And for the city of LA, as the Army Corps of Engineers approves a $1.8 billion plan to restore the river to a more natural state.

Which means maybe you’ll see more natural habitat and wildlife along your route, and less graffiti-ridden concrete slabs.

Although the question of who’s going to pay for it, and how, remains to be determined. As does just how long it will take before they get started, let alone finish.

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The Times explains how the city arrived at the $4.7 million settlement for the death of Diaz-Zeferino and the wounding of Eutiquio Acevedo Mendez, and looks at the differing interpretations of what happened in the 27 seconds before officers opened fire. And whether the shooting could have been avoided.

Meanwhile, a writer on City Watch calls the video a damning and graphic look at the cold-blooded shooting of an innocent man.

And yet, the three officers who opened fire on the unarmed brother of a bike theft victim haven’t been charged — or even disciplined — and are still patrolling the streets.

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LADOT Bike Blog looks at collision data for York Blvd over a 12-year period, noting that drivers were responsible for over 56% of collisions involving cyclists.

Most of the wrecks where drivers were at fault were the result of failure to yield or improper turns, while the overwhelming majority of collisions where the bike rider was at fault resulted from riding salmon.

It’s also worth noting that hit-and-runs on the boulevard declined by 38% after a road diet was implemented in 2006, more evidence that infrastructure influences behavior.

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A new vegan cookbook co-written by LA’s own nutritionist and endurance bike racer Matt Ruscigno — the man behind the city’s toughest hill climb challenge — gets an overwhelmingly positive review.

The again, it’s about cooking with chocolate and cacao, so what’s not to like?

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A new app promises to make you more visible while you’re walking.

Designed by a former Fire Chief and a former Public Works Supervisor, who experienced first hand the results of drivers treating people on foot as if they were not there, the free PedSafe app was developed to make pedestrians more noticeable while walking. It provides a random amber flashing light & pedestrian symbol on a smartphone to alert drivers that someone is walking & crossing a street.

Sounds like it could also act as a backup flasher if yours goes out or you get caught without lights while riding after dark.

Thanks to Frank Colin for the heads up.

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The Guardian offers a timeline of Thursday’s stage 12 of the Tour de France. The Alps could be the last obstacle for Chris Froome, after his dominating performance up to this point.

A pair of retired riders point an accusing finger at Froome, while others whisper about the still theoretical crime of motor doping. In his defense, Froome insists he’s clean and has never tested positive. Which is exactly what Lance used say, isn’t it?

VeloNews sums it up nicely, saying Froome is the only one who can ever know for a fact if he’s riding clean; the rest of us can only believe.

Twenty-three-year old French rider Warren Barguil may be in a lot of pain after a spill, but he’s also in 11th place in his first Tour. No explanation for why Vincenzo Nibali is faltering after winning last year’s TdF, though.

And Bicycling asks what kind of bike race fan you are. I’m more the sit in front of the TV watching the race while wishing I was out on my bike instead type.

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Local

A bike rider was seriously injured Thursday morning when he was hit by an off-duty LAPD officer on his way to work at Central Ave and Washington Blvd just south of DTLA. The officer was reportedly rattled by the collision, saying the rider came out of nowhere. Amazing how many bike riders are able to defy the laws of physics and just materialize out of thin air. And if he’s rattled, just imagine how the cyclist feels.

Registration for the Wolfpack Hustle Civic Center Crit opens today.

Malibu’s Los Virgenes Road is undergoing a year-long widening project, and will re-emerge with a bike lane on the east side.

A writer for the Beach Reporter gives the new Redondo Beach Gateway Project high marks from both a cyclist’s and driver’s perspective, failing only as a site for an illegal run in the street.

The Temple City Tribune recommends a ride on the 1.5 mile semi-paved Duarte bike path this summer.

A writer from LMU says you shouldn’t have take home a six-figure income to afford bike share. Are you listening, Metro?

 

State

Twenty percent of San Diego roads could be candidates for road diets.

The Rim Nordic mountain bike park near Big Bear is now officially open for business.

San Francisco could remove a short section of bike lanes to improve safety, while a police captain promises a crackdown on cyclists rolling stop signs, rather than directing resources where it might save more lives as part of the city’s Vision Zero.

A letter writer on a Marin website says dump the Prius and get a bike, already.

The Sacramento Bee says texting behind the wheel is dangerous, and reminds us that Governor Brown twice vetoed bills to toughen the law against it.

A Chico woman gets her bike back thanks to a sharp-eyed bike shop employee who recognized a thief he knew, then the bike the thief was riding.

 

National

Writing for Gizmodo, Alissa Walker makes the argument that there are no accidents, and says the word should be dropped from use to describe crashes. The Colorado Highway Patrol is already on board.

A Senate committee passes a Complete Streets amendment to accommodate all road users in street designs, including cyclists and pedestrians, as well as approving a provision allowing bikes to be rolled onto Amtrak trains. This would be a huge step forward if it makes it to the final bill.

A writer for the Wall Street Journal says you can eat like a normal person, ride a regular bike and live your life, and still be a serious cyclist.

A Seattle cop has written over 1,100 cycling tickets in just an eight year period — including 17 to the same bike messenger.

An audit says bike-friendly Denver’s bike plan is suffering from a lack of funding and a slow pace in implementing a planned 270 miles of bikeways.

An Austin TX driver flees the scene after deliberately brake checking a bike rider; he reportedly honked first and yelled at the rider to get in the bike lane, which was blocked by vegetation.

It’s happened again. A 19-year old Dallas driver is under arrest after hitting a cyclist and driving nearly a mile with his victim lodged in the windshield, before dumping him in an alley to die. He’s only charged with causing an accident resulting in death. If there’s any justice, that will be upgraded to a 2nd degree murder charge.

An Illinois cyclist is hospitalized after colliding with a goose, followed by a collision with another rider. No word on the condition of the goose.

A Michigan transplant patient takes his new heart on a two-day, 70-mile bike tour.

Pittsburgh’s mayor says more bike lanes are coming, despite the bikelash.

Unbelievable. A New York judge says a repeat hit-and-run drunk driver who has already killed two people should be allowed to get his driver’s license back. Evidently, the judge wants to go for three; if you even wonder why people keep dying on our streets, judges like this would be a good place to start.

Savannah police are looking for the thief who was caught on video stealing a $7,000 Time bike; it was the fourth time in 10 years the owner had a bike stolen. Yet he still left his high-end bike unlocked on a stair rail after finishing his ride? Seriously?

Nice story, as a Tampa cop gives a mentally disabled man a ride to work after his bike is stolen, then teams with his partner to buy him a new one.

Miami bike crashes nearly doubled over a two year period.

 

International

Treehugger says bikes are not cars, and infrastructure is better than helmets.

Cycling Weekly looks at reader’s most embarrassing moments on a bike. Mine was probably early in my riding career, when I was watching an attractive woman instead of the road and pedaled into the back of a parked car.

Calgary bike thefts are up 60%.

Caught on video: UK police are looking for a clumsy bike thief who rode into a parking barrier as he made his escape.

Belfast cyclists are looking forward to the city’s first ciclovía.

An Indian proposal would make bikes subject to seizure if the owner rides in the roadway instead of a cycletrack.

A group of DIY fixie and single speed riders are bringing Soweto bike style to the streets of Johannesburg.

An Aussie cyclist keeps riding his tandem despite blindness, impaired hearing and Type 2 Diabetes.

Singapore authorities plan a bikeway that would provide a seamless commuting route serving 400,000 people.

 

Finally…

Your next helmet could have turn signals and an automatic brake signal. It’s a lot easier to make the podium in your first mountain bike race when there’s only three people entered.

And road rage knows no bounds, as a pair of Balboa Island bike riders are harassed by a driver. In a golf cart.

 

Gardena BWB tickets dropped, bike rider shooting caught on video, York road diet improves safety

Good news from Gardena for a change.

Streetsblog reports that the LACBC, along with a number of outraged letter writers, have been instrumental in getting the Gardena police to drop the tickets issued to a group of riders stopped for apparently riding while brown.

The riders, mostly members of the East Side Riders and Los Ryderz, had just replaced a ghost bike for fallen hit-and-run victim Benjamin Torres, which had been removed by the city. And which was removed a second time just hours later.

They were on their way meet with city officials when they were stopped, frisked, and — after much delay and debate among the many officers present — ticket for obstructing traffic, in violation of state law.

I doubt that members of La Grange, or any other spandex-clad Westside riding group, would have been stopped under the same circumstance. Let alone frisked.

Then again, it’s not like you can hide much in Spandex. Or anything, for that matter.

Fortunately, justice and rationality has finally reigned in Gardena.

Now if they can just keep their cops from killing crime victims.

The story notes that another memorial ride will be held this weekend. And this time, Gardena police have been invited to take part.

Now, the United Riders of South L.A. are asking for you to show your support for them, for victims of hit-and-runs, and for cycling in Gardena in general by joining them on this weekend’s memorial ride.

The group will meet this Saturday, August 10, at Rowley Park (13220 Van Ness Ave) at 3:30 p.m. to do a loop through Gardena and stop to pay their respects at the site where Torres was killed. If you have any questions, please see here or contact the East Side Riders or Los Ryderz.

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The LAPD offers security video showing two gunmen targeting a bike rider in what would have been a drive-by, except the shooters got out of their SUV to fire their guns repeatedly.

Not surprisingly, police think the shooting, which occurred in El Sereno late last month, was gang related. The victim was treated and released for non-life-threatening injuries.

And just to clarify, gang-related does not necessarily mean the person getting shot at is a gang member; just that the people shooting at him may have been, or thought he was.

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to contact Hollenbeck Detective Donna Cornejo at 323-224-0104.

However, someone should tell the LAPD that bike riders, even ones getting shot at, are not pedestrians.

Mistaking the two could explain a lot when it comes to why some cops seem confused about the rights of riders.

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Analysis of the 2006 York Blvd road diet shows it cut collisions by 23%, and injuries by 27%. And reduced felony hit-and-runs by a whopping 47%. However, collisions involving bicyclists continue to rise, perhaps due to increased ridership.

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LA’s proposed street repair bond is revived by the city council; with reports due back to the council on the feasibility of including fixing sidewalks and complete streets serving all road users — including bicyclists — in the bond issue.

Of course, there’s a difference between mandating a complete streets approach and requesting a feasibility study. So we’ll want to keep an eye on this one.

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Free three-hour bicycling skills courses will be offered by Metro and the LACBC over the next two months. The Culver City Bicycle Coalition hosts a family ride this Friday. The next Wolfpack Hustle midnight drag race gears up on September 7th; registration opens August 10th. Santa Monica’s new Streetsblog edition is coming next month. Formerly bike-unfriendly Malibu will show just how much they’ve changed with two PCH Safety Study Meetings later this month, on the 20th and 22nd. Oh the horror of it all, as Glendale streets are losing lanes and gaining signs to accommodate non-motorized road users. Long Beach looks into funding for their own ciclovia.

The Huntington Beach bike shop looted in the recent surf riot now offers T-shirts proclaiming it Riot Proof, as locals pitch in to pay for the damage. San Diego’s Qualcomm is working on a portable system to help drivers avoid bikes and pedestrians; thank goodness, because eyes and ears don’t seem to do the job. The fourth annual Ventura Share the Road Ride is scheduled for October 5th. Cyclelicious looks at the bike section of the updated 2013 California Drivers Handbook; not perfect, but it’s getting better, even if it does still say you can park in a bike lane. This is the guy behind many of the recent innovations in bike design. A San Francisco bike rider is killed in a Calistoga SWSS — Single Witness Suicide Swerve. A Red Bluff man says bicyclists don’t belong on local highways unless they pay to put bike lanes on them, neglecting to consider who pays for the traffic lanes he drives in — or that most cars come equipped with brakes to help them avoid slower traffic. Downtown Chico sports new green bike lanes, thus ruining their chance to pass for LA’s Spring Street in any Hollywood production.

The Federal Highway Administration moves to back separated cycle tracks. AAA’s own stats say high speeds kill, yet the Auto Club consistently opposes attempts to lower them. Not surprisingly, bike riders gravitate towards protected bikeways. The Bike League offers an in-depth report on women’s bicycling, and how to get more women on bikes. New flash cards help assess concussion in cycling falls; every racing team and riding club should have a set. No one really knows why your bike doesn’t just fall over; then again, maybe they do. Now that’s sad, as a barking dog leads strangers to the body of his master, who was killed in a fall from his bike. Seattle newspaper calls for more and better bicycling infrastructure. A Las Vegas bike rider is slashed by a double meat cleaver wielding Juggalo; my worst nightmare — homicidal, probably insane and horrific taste in music. The Denver public library goes mobile with a WiFi equipped book bike. Bike share generates more foot traffic than car parking in Chicago. How to not bike like a dickweed. New York mayoral candidate calls for a Vision Zero plan — aka no traffic deaths — for the city; long past time for one of our own here in the City of Angeles. Beyoncé bikes across the Brooklyn Bridge to perform at the Barclays Center; no one recognized her, proving that bikes really do make you invisible. Boston guards bikes in a subway station with a cardboard cutout of a cop — and it works; thanks to D.D. Syrdal for the link. In a heartbreaking case, the family of a cyclist riding near his home witnesses the hit-and-run that killed him. Mass insanity strikes Cobb County GA as they reject a grant because it reeks of a UN Agenda 21 plot to take away their cars. Louisiana bike rider tries to outrun a patrol car after stealing soda and beer.

Toronto cops are ordered to track doorings, while a local writer says let the city’s bike share system die a slow and painful death. In a hard-hitting piece, a Brit blogger says it’s really not funny when someone claims they were only joking about killing a cyclist or raping a woman, and the two have more in common than you might think. Britain’s Liberal Democrats call for proportionate liability to hold the larger vehicle responsible in a collision; something I’ve long called for (#10) here. Bike riders don’t deserve the abuse they receive on Twitter. Eight in ten British cyclists fear for their safety on the country’s roads; evidently, the rest don’t read online comments. Or maybe it’s because the courts send 95-year old drivers who kill cyclists after fainting back out to do it again. Advice on how to stay safe on your bike, and what to do if that advice doesn’t work. Aussie shock jocks are blamed for a bike lane backlash. Australian police crack down on rogue cyclists. A search for the best biking city Down Under. A Yokohama bike lane is a real obstacle course. A Japanese construction crane operator is arrested for hit-and-run in the death of an 11-year old bike rider; yes, a construction crane.

Finally, you can now protect yourself from the sun while you turn your helmet into a giant sombrero, but would it block the view from your built-in cam? Here’s the perfect bluegrass-flavored soundtrack for your next ride.

And if you haven’t seen it yet, just try to keep your jaw from hitting the floor when a mountain bike racer goes horizontal off a billboard to take the win.

Maybe it’s time for a Beverly Hills boycott; confused Highland Park grocer opposes bike lanes

Let’s catch up on the recent news.

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Beverly Hills declares war on L.A. transit users by actively opposing Measure J, which would speed up key transit projects throughout the county.

In other words, in order to keep it from going under Beverly Hills High, they’re more than willing to prevent the Subway to the Sea — and many other major projects that would serve transit users far from their over-privileged, Tiffany-crusted burg — from being built in our lifetimes.

Personally, I go out of my way to avoid spending money in the Biking Black Hole of Beverly Hills, thanks to their almost complete lack of bicycling infrastructure.

Although to be fair, they do have a handful of bike racks to accommodate the riders they don’t accommodate in any other way.

But I’ve never called for a boycott of the city.

Maybe it’s time to change that.

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Talk about tone deaf.

An Highland Park grocer opposes the bike lanes on York Blvd in front of his store — as well as bike racks — in the name of safety. Despite the fact that he ran over a little boy riding on the sidewalk in front of his store just six months ago.

And despite the fact that bike lanes move cyclists out of the way of that high-speed traffic he worries about — and helps keep more timid riders off the sidewalk.

Just a slight disconnect there.

And never mind that it’s legal to ride a bike on the sidewalk in Los Angeles — and yes, that is part of L.A. — despite what he says the boy’s mother was told by police.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

Update: Evidently, the grocery owner isn’t the only one who’s confused; I originally misplaced the market as being in Eagle Rock, rather than Highland Park. And misspelled Erik Griswold’s name as Eric.

Mea culpa, mea culpa, maxima mea culpa. Thanks to bikingly for the corrections.

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SoCal bike scribe Patrick Brady of the Red Kite Prayer website goes down hard on Tuna Canyon Wednesday, requiring nine hours in the ER and nearly 50 stitches from a skilled plastic surgeon. Cycling in the Southbay says it could have been a lot worse — and could have happened to any of us.

Let’s hope he heals soon.

And if you’ve never read Brady’s writing, you owe it to yourself to give it a try. No one writes more beautifully about the sport we love.

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The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department launches its own probe into the death of Alfonso Cerda, killed in a collision with a Sheriff’s patrol car early Monday morning; despite initial reports, Cerda was unarmed — and was a U.S. citizen. There’s still time to participate online in Malibu’s PCH safety study. A section of the L.A. River bike path near Griffith Park will be closed for approximately four months to make room for — what else? — more cars. The North Mason Avenue bike lane could be closed for six months to allow parking at a newly built school; God forbid they should encourage students to walk, bike or bus to class. The monthly Spoke(n) Art Ride rolls this Saturday. Better Bike looks at the newly forming Bicycle Crash Support Group. Claremont City Council has the courage to reject speed limit increases mandated by a highly flawed law. The L.A. County Bicycle Festival takes place at the Fairgrounds in Pomona this Saturday and Sunday, including the annual Spooky Cross cyclocross race and a Velo Swap Meet and Market to raise funds for the Pomona Valley Bike Coalition.

An Orange County perspective on the melting post that is CicLAvia. The Orange County Bicycle Coalition looks at traffic collision data for Newport Beach. A Newport Beach community group talks bike safety. Solana Beach approves traffic calming and bike lanes on a busy street. Why doesn’t anyone ever suggest calling out aggressive drivers? Ventura County bike ride will raise funds for a cyclist seriously injured by alleged DUI driver. Berkeley gets its first CicLAvia-style Sunday Streets event this weekend; thanks to Meghan Lynch for the tip. A Sonoma driver drops dead in his driveway one day after running down two cyclists, critically injuring one.

New study explains how bike helmets work to reduce brain injuries. Bicycling explores what it’s like to dope; as Cyclelicious points out, it’s not just the pros who dope, just different drugs. Seattle cyclists get a permanent bike counter on a popular bridge; it’s long past time L.A. had a few. Clearly, killer hit-and-run drivers aren’t just an L.A. problem; thanks to Rick Risemberg for the link. If a 90-year old Wisconsin driver who ran down a cyclist on a bike path is incompetent to stand trial, why was he considered capable of driving? New York mandates safety classes for delivery cyclists. Studies from Portland and New York show the economic benefits of bicycling; in the East Village, at least, they get that bikes mean business. A Brit cyclist is hit by a school bus just 65 miles from the finish of a San Diego to New York ride.

Lady Gaga plans a charity bike ride for her Born This Way Foundation; for once, spandex bike clothes may not seem garish in comparison. Toronto considers whether an e-bike should be treated like a bicycle. Jakarta cyclists love the city’s newly constructed longest bikeway, though some question the quality. Where will the next generation of affordable bikes come from, now that Chinese manufacturing costs are going up? A drunk Brazilian driver deliberately runs down a group of cyclists.

Finally, the Dallas Department of DIY has been hard at work installing bikeways — even if the local press doesn’t know the difference between a bike lane and a sharrow. And a Gilbert AZ cyclist pleads guilty to the illegal citizen’s arrest of a jogger running in a bike lane.

Tempting, I know.

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