Morning Links: Bikeshare finally besmirches Santa Monica, and the disappearing American bike shop

Bikeshare is finally here.

No, really.

After years of promises, Santa Monica has officially won the race for Los Angeles County’s first bikeshare program, with seven test hubs hitting the street as a pilot program for the Breeze bikeshare system that will hopefully turn into a gale by the end of the year.

And unlike some city’s we could mention, SaMo actually put a full bike network in place to protect riders before planning to throw bike renters to the traffic wolves.

Meanwhile, LA’s long-promised bikeshare system could finally make an appearance next year, just in time to take riders to see LA’s long-promised pro football team make its — or their — debut at the Coliseum.

And yes, it really is starting to feel like bikeshare is popping up everywhere, much to the chagrin of some who dread the besmirching of their fair cities, to cite a classic.

No one appears to have risen up in opposition to bikeshare in Los Angeles yet.

But there’s still plenty of time.

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Red Kite Prayer explains why 38% of American bike shops have gone out of business in the last 15 years, despite the recent bike boom.

Meanwhile, a new bike maker has an interesting idea to help change that by charging more to buy direct than to buy the same bike from your local bike shop. They also promise to donate all their profits to bike advocacy programs.

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Good thing the doping era is over. An Italian rider for Team Katusha has been provisionally suspended for using EPO back in 2012. Don’t you love how cycling teams are always shocked! shocked! to discover one of their riders is cheating?

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Local

The Times’ Sandy Banks says that it’s up to us to hold city officials accountable for living up to the lofty promises of the Mobility Plan and Vision Zero.

The LA Explorers Club hosts their annual bike ride from the Garden of Eden to Devil’s Gate this Sunday, led by guest host Tom Carroll of the Tom Explores LA web series. The ride starts with New Belgium beers and ends with a stop at a brew pub, so this might be a good time to brush up on how alcohol affects your ride.

Nice interview with Wolfpack Hustle’s Don Ward, aka LA’s legendary Roadblock.

Metro wants to know your top priorities for improving walking and bicycling to train stations, bus stops and along regional bikeways or shared-use paths.

CicLAvia offers a photographic wrap-up of the recent Culver City to Venice event, where a good time was had by all.

 

State

Not surprisingly, a Camp Pendleton Navy man has pled not guilty in the hit-and-run death of cyclist Philip White.

San Diego’s Bike the Bay rolls through five bay-adjacent cities and across the Coronado Bay Bridge this Sunday.

Riverside considers replacing four-way stops with traffic circles, as well as building berms that will allow bike riders to bypass stop signs.

So much for the myth of scofflaw cyclists, as San Bernardino police write 95 tickets during a crackdown on bike and pedestrian safety, with just seven going to the people on two wheels, and 49 to those on two feet.

Palm Springs police go undercover to bust three thieves with a bait bike.

A Santa Barbara writer offers advice on essential tools for bike riders. I concur — especially about the cell phone, which can be a life saver in an emergency.

San Francisco unveils secure bike parking at the Civic Center BART station; users pay $5 for an access card and user verification, then just three cents an hour to park their bike. Can we pretty please get that down here? Please?

A Lodi bike summit aims to make the city a destination for bike tourism.

 

National

Biking to work is growing fastest among the richest Americans. Perhaps because the poorest have already been doing it.

Bicycling offers advice on how to take better pictures of your bike.

Portland distinguishes a bikeway from a sidewalk by painting the former green.

Santa Fe is planning a $3.8 million tunnel to allow cyclists and pedestrians to pass under a six-lane highway.

An Iowa driver had a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit when he killed a cyclist during a Sunday morning ride. So instead of cracking down on drunk drivers, the city naturally goes after unpermitted group rides.

A Minnesota driver faces up to 10 years for allegedly killing a bike-riding mom while texting.

At least they take drunk driving seriously in Illinois. A driver from that state faces up to 14 years in prison after pleading guilty to killing a cyclist while driving with a BAC 2.5 times the legal limit.

A full year after a New York bike rider was seriously injured in a hit-and-run, the NYPD still hasn’t spoken with the owner of the vehicle — and left it to the victim to track him down. Nice to know the police really don’t give a damn there.

 

International

This is why you never lock your bicycle to a street sign, as a Canadian rider returns to find thieves had unbolted the sign post to get his bike.

A British actress had to wait two hours for an ambulance after she was impaled on her own handlebars after a collision with another rider.

Floating bus stops designed to protect London bike riders could endanger blind and partially sighted people, according to one writer.

A London mayoral candidate insists riding a bike in the city is taking your life into your own hands, saying he doesn’t ride because he doesn’t want to leave his children without a father. No point in being overly dramatic or anything.

A writer for the UK’s Guardian explains why Manchester is a rubbish city for cycling.

A British cyclist saves the lives of several other people when his organs were donated, after he died from an apparent solo fall. I’ve signed my donor card just in case; if the worst ever happens, I want some good to come from it.

An Irish soccer player faces charges of drunk driving and hit-and-run after crashing into a bike rider, followed by driving into a gas pump.

Seriously? A test of the road race course for next year’s Rio Olympics is deemed a success, despite being rerouted for a protest and the mugging of photographers covering it. But other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, the play was a huge success.

Singapore has plans to become Asia’s first bicycling city, with plans to add over 430 miles of bikeways, including shaded paths to compensate for the city’s hot temperatures.

 

Finally…

Shape offer 30 reasons why bicycles are better than boyfriends. When is a three-month suspension for punching a fellow member of your national cycling team not a suspension? When there are no races scheduled to compete in.

And repeat after me: When you’re riding with a gun and a small amount of drugs on your bike, don’t ride salmon, already.

 

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