Morning Links: Cedillo pulls fast one on Eagle Rock Blvd, Metro Bike goes ebike, and USC prof gets it wrong on road diets

Looks like Gil Cedillo is up to his old tricks.

The CD1 Councilmember is notorious for sandbagging bicycle and safe streets advocates following his flip flop on promises to support a fully funded and shovel-ready road diet on North Figueroa.

Shortly after taking office, he sponsored a series of public meetings carefully crafted to make it look like opposition to the road diet outweighed support, when just the opposite was true.

Then ended up demanding that the city council remove all bike lanes in his district from the mobility plan.

An attempt that failed miserably.

Now he’s suddenly called a public meeting to discuss plans to improve safety on Eagle Rock Blvd on exceptionally short notice.

Neale Stokes reports that hand-scrawled posters have just gone up around Cedillo’s Verdugo field office, announcing a last minute public meeting to be held on Saturday to discuss crosswalks, bike lanes and traffic safety on the busy boulevard.

Never mind that no other notice mentioning a meeting regarding Eagle Rock Blvd has appeared online or in local publications to give more than a handful of people a chance to offer their input.

It’s almost like he wants to hold a public meeting without the public actually showing up.

Except for the ones who’ll support his predetermined position, of course.

It’s hard to read from the photo, but the Eagle Rock Blvd meeting will be held tomorrow from 10 am to noon at the Glassell Park Senior Center, 3650 Verdugo Road.

You owe it to yourself to attend if you live, work, walk or bike in the area round Eagle Rock Blvd to demand a safer street for everyone.

Or just accept whatever it is the city’s most notoriously anti-bike and anti-safety councilmember wants to shove down our throats.

………

LA’s Metro Bike bikeshare will be adding over 300 ped-assist ebikes to its fleet to serve 20 new docking stations stretching from Exposition Park to Koreatown and Silver Lake.

………

LA Times readers react to a recent article questioning the spending of gas tax money on road diets by pointing out the need for them.

Except for the director of USC’s Transportation Engineering Program, who argues that moving cars by maintaining the outdated Level of Service standard is more important than saving human lives.

No, really.

To the editor: Road diets are a travesty regardless of how we pay for them.

Proponents of reducing road capacity invariably claim that lane reductions can be executed with little impact on traffic volumes. They can, but traffic volumes do not describe level of service. A given traffic volume can be achieved with denser, lower speed flow; or with sparser, higher speed flow.

Initiatives like Vision Zero focus worthy attention on pedestrian safety but deliver far too few safety improvements in exchange for potentially crushing increases in network travel delays. Lives have value. Time has value. Mobility has value. Vision Zero mismanages the trade-offs.

Put fuel tax revenues into capacity, maintenance, repair and congestion pricing tools.

James E. Moore II, Los Angeles

The writer is a professor in USC’s Viterbi School of Engineering and Price School of Public Policy and director of USC’s Transportation Engineering Program.

Yet another reminder that the old, entrenched attitudes are hard to defeat.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

A Pennsylvania mountain biker was lucky to avoid serious injuries when he crashed into a rope that someone had strung across a bike trail next to a steep embankment.

Apparently, someone doesn’t like bike races, either, tossing a broken bike into the path of the Giro riders in an apparent attempt to cause a mass pileup.

………

Local

LA’s Exposition Park is in line for a people-friendly makeover, including plans to de-emphasize cars and build more bike racks.

LAist wonders what would happen if Los Angeles banned right turns on red lights. Meanwhile, a San Jose paper says right-on-red bans are spreading through the Bay Area, even as red light cameras are being removed.

A writer for the Daily Bruin says partnering with an e-scooter provider won’t save UCLA’s failing bikeshare system.

A bike-riding YouTube star competes in a Malibu beauty contest, and concludes they have some value, after all.

 

State

The rich get richer. San Francisco announces plans to extend the three-block parking protected bike lanes on Valencia Street another eight blocks.

A Bay Area bike rider lists all the specialized — or Specialized — gear you’ll need for your first bikepacking ride. Or you could just a sleeping bag and a tent, strap ’em onto the bike you already own, and just go.

A Stockton man was shot several times in an apparent robbery attempt while riding his bicycle on a local bike path.

 

National

Bike Snob makes the case that horns don’t belong on cars, either, calling them “inherently stupid and profoundly antisocial.”

Reno firefighters surprised a teenage boy with a new bike after they had to rescue him when his bike slipped off a path, and he got stuck in a culvert.

An Arizona history professor says the lowly bicycle has had an impact on labor, travel, technology, fashion and marriage.

Now that’s more like it. A Wisconsin bike shop is enticing people to get on their bikes with a Bike Week spread offering up fresh bacon and coffee, along with fruit, donuts and an unspecified vegan option. They had me at bacon and coffee.

Streetsblog New York complains about a road resurfacing project that removed all the markings for a protected bike lane, leaving riders to fend for themselves for weeks.

Your move, Los Angeles. New York passes an ordinance making it illegal to block bike lanes for construction work.

A Trenton, New Jersey columnist says the mayor’s Bike Month bicycle ride should have gone through the city’s impoverished neighborhoods, where 18 people have died from gun violence in recent days. A reminder that traffic violence isn’t the only risk far too many people face on a daily basis in this country.

DC decides that flexposts just aren’t good enough for protected bike lanes.

Baltimore is ripping out a section of a protected bike lane to restore twelve parking spaces in front of a church, while the city’s mayor denies remarks attributed to him saying that black people don’t ride bicycles.

A New Orleans writer argues that bike lanes make economic sense for the city.

 

International

A Costa Rican website considers what it will take to get the country’s people on bicycles.

Here’s a few more for your bike bucket list. A Canadian website lists what they consider the five best road bike rides in the western part of the country.

A pair of bike riders raised the equivalent of nearly $38,000 for charity by riding the length of Great Britain — although one man had to finish alone after his partner was seriously injured when he was run down by an older driver with a suspended license.

A travel writer bikes around Taiwan for just $29 a day.

The LA Times former Beijing bureau chief recalls riding his bicycle to witness the Chinese army crush the demonstrators at Tiananmen Square.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cyclocross Magazine offers a preview of this weekend’s 202-mile Dirty Kanza 200 gravel race.

Then there’s the 350-mile, unsupported, ultra endurance Dirty Kanza XL, featuring the 28-year old woman who won last year’s 2,745-mile Tour Divide — even she didn’t even learn how to ride a bike until she was 20.

 

Finally…

Your next bike tires could come from Russian dandelions. And now you can wear your sweaty bike shorts everywhere and be totally trendy.

7 comments

  1. David says:

    After all the problems that USC has had, not sure anyone believes anything that comes out of that university anymore.

  2. heya says:

    Jeez, this post makes me not want to go to the Eagle Rock Blvd meeting. I live in the community, and I learned about it from a neighbor last weekend. And since then I’ve seen the signs posted here and there. If it wasn’t for a few people yelling about how they aren’t promoting the meeting, I wouldn’t have known that there’s some nefarious campaign to keep attendance low.

    Your post smells like propaganda, and a lame attempt to freak people out / rile them up. I can think of better people to hang out with on a Saturday morning.

    • Trolltoll says:

      Hi Fredy! Nice to see you’re still trolling for Cedillo even though you’re off the payroll.

      • heya says:

        Hmm, nope. I don’t know who that is. I’m very very far from a fan of Cedillo.

        I just think it’s dumb of Ted, who lives on the West Side, to needlessly antagonize CD1 when he probably got all his info second hand from some obviously annoyed person. This isn’t reporting. And he devoted a lot of space to his rant.

        I live two blocks from ER Blvd. I walk along it every day. I have lots and lots of opinions about how it can be improved for bicyclist and pedestrians. And while I have been formulating my feedback for the last week in preparation for this meeting, reading this post – and your reply – reminded me why I stay away from social media and trolls, and why I should probably avoid this meeting.

        • bikinginla says:

          You’re right.

          ecause I live in Hollywood — which is kind of far from West LA — I’m not allowed to have any opinion on a council district where people still needlessly die on the streets due to the councilmember actively blocking much needed safety measures. Let alone that I or one of my friends might be one of them when we ride through his district.

          No one would suspect Cedillo of playing tricks if he didn’t have long, well-documented history of doing exactly that. So maybe you can explain to me why this meeting was only publicized by word of mouth and a handful of flyers in the immediate vicinity of the meeting, in clear violation of the Brown Act?

          And if anything I or anyone else says can keep you from actively participating in your own government, you have a problem I can’t begin to help you with.

          • heya says:

            Why do you think I’d know the inner workings of the advertising scheme for this meeting? When my neighbor showed me the flyer, she showed me the digital flyer that had been posted to facebook at least a week prior to the meeting. I don’t think “clear violation of the Brown Act” is true in this case, and I think it’s irresponsible of you to fling out such declarations with what little information you apparently have.

            Sure, you’re allowed to have an opinion. But is it responsible journalism to use your popular website to antagonize the district and rile people up based on your scant information, before the meeting’s actually occurred? I don’t think it is. But you do you, and I’ll criticize as I see fit.

            Again, I’m not a fan of Cedillo. And I have next to no hope that he’d actually do ANYTHING bike-related in his district. And while I’m not giving him a pass on that, the reason he’s so anti-bike is because the “pro-bike” people are endlessly antagonizing him rather than attempting any reconciliation or middle ground (or say, shifting some focus to ped safety, which is something Cedillo actually DOES act on). And it’s disappointing that you’re using your voice to simply bash him before the meeting’s even occurred. It’s bad enough having a CD that sucks this much – you’re not helping anything over there.

            • bikinginla says:

              Bullshit. “Pro-bike” people oppose him because he lied to us about supporting bike lanes in his district and a road diet on North Figueroa before he was elected, then turned around and opposed them after his election. Bike and safety supporters continued trying to work with him, myself included, even as he made it clear he was opposed to all bike safety measures — going so far as to attempt to have all bike lanes in his district removed from the mobility plan. People continue to die in CD1 because of his knee-jerk opposition to much-needed safety measures — including far too many pedestrians, for whom he hasn’t done nearly enough.

              You can’t work with someone who refuses to work with you, and you can’t compromise with someone who insists on having it his way.

              Even if that flyer was posted on Facebook, that isn’t sufficient to let the general public know. Facebook only works if you happen to follow the account it happens to be posted on. I’ve repeatedly searched online for any mention of this meeting, and found exactly nothing. At worst, this is a violation of the Brown Act; at best, an attempt to technically comply while violating the spirit and intention of the law.

              And let’s get something else straight. This site is as much about opinion and advocacy as it is about news. I will always fight for bikes and street safety, and will never, ever apologize for that. Period.

              As for using my voice to “bash” him, apparently you think I’m allowed to have my opinion, but not express it on my own website. My purpose was to get bike and street safety supporters to attend a meeting that virtually everyone blindsided by — with the apparent exception of you. Even those who live and work in CD1 had no idea this was happening until this site got the word out, thanks to someone who just happened to see the flyer posted on a street pole. So no, I won’t be apologizing for that, either.

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