Gehry wants to put a lid on the LA River, riding more is better for your heart, and Houston bike deaths spike while LA drops

When it comes to the LA River, Los Angeles starchitect Frank Gehry want put a lid on it.

Literally.

While environmental and advocacy groups have been working for years to restore the river to a more natural state, Gehry, who was invited to reimagine the river by LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, wants to cover it up instead.

Gehry proposes addressing decades of social injustice by leaving the concrete river channel alone, while building a continuous park on platforms stretching above the river.

What that would mean for long-time plans to finally complete the LA River bike path along the full 51-mile length of the river isn’t clear.

There’s no word on whether it would be left where it is along the banks of the river, moved onto the new platforms, or buried beneath them.

Or just forgotten entirely as yet another inconvenience in the path of progress.

But the simple fact is, Los Angeles has turned its back on the river at its heart for far too long.

And burying it, when we have a chance to finally revive it, isn’t any better.

Thanks to Fatema Baldiwala for the heads-up.

Photo shows the 4th Street Bridge over the Los Angeles River during CicLAvia.

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Keep riding if you want to live.

A new Oxford University study shows that every physical movement counts when it comes to improving cardiovascular health.

But people who exercise the most have the lowest risk of heart disease, with no upper limit to how much is beneficial.

Which means that a simple walk around the block helps, but a five-mile bike ride helps more.

And a 50 miler is better yet.

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Heartbreaking news from Houston, where a record 34 bike riders lost their lives last year as more people took up bicycling as part of the pandemic bike boom.

That compares to Los Angeles County, with over four times the population, where bicycling deaths inexplicably dropped from 34 in 2019 to just 16 last year.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the link.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes keeps going on.  

Life is cheap in the UK, where a man walked without a day behind bars for leaning out of the car he was riding in to pull a bike rider off his bicycle, while bizarrely claiming he was acting in self defense.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly. 

A San Diego man will spend the rest of his life behind bars for riding his bike to conduct a series of brutal, gruesome attacks on homeless people, killing four and injuring several others.

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Local

This is the cost of traffic violence. A Long Beach mother and military vet was killed by a hit-and-run driver as she slept on a sidewalk; Stephanie Jackson became homeless after watching her fiancé die of liver cancer, but wouldn’t admit it even to her daughter.

 

State

No news is good news, right?

 

National

Three-hundred miles were just added to the US Bicycle Route System, bringing the network to nearly 15,000 rideable miles.

VeloNews explains the tech behind the new crash-resistant bikewear.

America’s last remaining Tour de France winner introduces a head-turning carbon fiber electric city bike that doesn’t look a bit like a typical ebike. Although the $4,500 price tag is kind of head-turning, too.

Kansas City’s bikeshare system is going dockless.

Your new Waco, Texas home could be a TV star, complete with a vintage bicycle attached to the wall.

The Chicago Tribune considers how to choose the right mountain bike helmet.

A Michigan town approves spending $115,000 to rip out a three-year old bike lane.

New York is considering an automated camera system to ticket drivers who block bike lanes, blaming them for an increase in bicycling deaths. Although they might want to start with their own police department.

A new poll shows New Yorkers are skeptical of Vision Zero, even though 70% know someone who has been injured or killed by traffic violence.

Miami Beach is expanding its Slow Streets program, which was originally scheduled to end in November after one month.

 

International

The BBC examines why some bikeshare programs work and others don’t — like the need to use ebikes in hilly cities.

Road.cc chooses their bike of the year for under £1,000, the equivalent of $1368. Meanwhile, sister site off-road.cc selects their mountain bike of the year.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s seven-mile bike ride, in apparent violation of his own lockdown rules, draws the ire of the populace — and worse, the British press. Or maybe not, as a police official says even a ride ten times longer is allowed under the rules. Either way, Johnson vows to keep riding, and do his running at Buckingham Place.

France will now require all new bikes sold in the country to be marked with a ten character registration code to help fight bike theft, with used bikes to follow starting in July.

 

Competitive Cycling

Masters ‘cross racer Lee Waldman offers lessons learned from a lifetime of bike racing to help the nation heal in the wake of last week’s insurrection in the US capitol.

Austrian cyclist Stefan Denifl ends up with a net eight month ban for six years worth of doping.

 

Finally…

Do your mountain biking at the zoo. Your next bike could be made from natural timber, metal work and vegetable tanner leather.

And your next bike could be a four-wheeled, two seat pedal-powered minicar.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a damn mask, already. 

One comment

  1. Barry says:

    Is there one river in Southern California which cities haven’t turned their backs on? The Santa Ana is also mostly a drainage ditch staring at the back of commercial buildings.

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