LA considers Complete Streets makeover of Valley Blvd, US House hearing on traffic deaths, and Ballona Creek path closed

Los Angeles is taking the first tentative steps towards a Complete Streets makeover of Valley Blvd, from Mission Road to Soto Street

Proposals for the four-mile stretch of Valley Blvd include bus lanes and a possible sidewalk level, two-way cycle track, while sinking railroad tracks to reduce crossings and improve safety.

But don’t hold your breath.

Actual construction is at least five to ten years off. And what gets built will depend on a series of public meetings, which gives the usual NIMBYs a chance to derail everything.

Photo courtesy of the City of Los Angeles, via The Eastsider.

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About damn time.

The US House of Representatives Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee held a hearing yesterday to consider the country’s rising rate of traffic deaths, especially among pedestrians and bike riders.

Then again, it’s one thing to conduct a hearing. It’s another to actually do something about it.

Which hasn’t exactly been Congress’ strong suit in recent years.

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A section of the Ballona Creek bike path between National Blvd and Duquesne Ave in Culver City will be closed through this month.

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Sunset For All hosts another coffee walk to spread the word about plans for a more human-focused boulevard.

https://twitter.com/SunsetForAll/status/1534319644634497025

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

An Idaho man faces up to 15 years behind bars after accepting a plea bargain for driving through a public park trying to run down a boy riding a bicycle; fortunately, the kid was able to jump off before the man ran over his bike.

Police in the UK are looking for the passenger of a pickup who shouted out the window and squirted an “unknown liquid” in the face of pair of bicyclists as the truck passed them. Far from a harmless prank, something like that can startle the victim and cause a dangerous fail — regardless of whether the substance itself was actually harmful.

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Local

A Long Beach bike rider is in stable condition after he suffered injuries to his upper body when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver in the California Heights neighborhood.

 

State 

Victorville will close a portion of Green Tree Blvd for three months as part of a street makeover, including adding bike lanes along the roadway to create a seven-mile bike loop.

Zebra sightings continue in Santa Barbara, including one that chased a bike rider on Sunday; locals suggest it could be a free-roaming domesticated animal who has gone on several previous walkabouts.

San Jose’s Mr. Roadshow says he’s surprised the Bike League rated California as the country’s fourth most bicycle-friendly state, even as bike and pedestrian deaths continue to rise. He should see how surprised the rest of us are.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a therapy bike belonging to an 11-year old Sacramento boy with cerebral palsy; fortunately, kindhearted community members have raised more than $3,000 to replace it.

 

National

Outdoor offers their favorite outdoor love stories shared by the magazine’s readers, including a California couple’s mountain biking meetup that sparked their relationship.

Consumer Reports warns against buying or using the Tony Hawk Silver Signature Series helmet after it failed a safety test; the manufacturer had offered the helmet as a replacement for the recalled Dimensions Bluetooth Speaker multipurpose helmet, which also failed the magazine’s safety tests.

Bicycling recommends their picks for the best saddle bags. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Dallas is the latest major city to adopt a Vision Zero program, agreeing to halt traffic deaths by 2030. Let’s hope they show more commitment than Los Angeles and other cities have, where it’s failing for lack of effort and investment.

A Chicago public radio station considers what the city can do to improve safety for bicyclists, after three riders have died on city streets this year. Meanwhile, Los Angeles has suffered over twice as many deaths, and no one has even batted an eye. 

Prosecutors charged an Indianapolis man with murder for the fatal hit-and-run that killed his ex-girlfriend as she was riding her bike; she identified her killer by giving police his license number before she died.

A writer from Streetsblog says New York can have nice things, but only after they get rid of cars — like blocking vehicles from the iconic Brooklyn Bridge.

That’s more like it. DC is considering a plan to charge owners of large trucks and SUVs more to register their vehicles in an attempt to improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians, with an extra $175 for vehicles weighing between 3,500 and 6,000 pounds, and $500 for anything over that.

 

International

Digital Journal suggests smart helmets could be the future of bicycle safety.

British police are relying on bike cam and dashcam video to enforce traffic laws, after cutbacks in traffic cops. Unfortunately, that’s illegal in most, if not all, US states, where traffic infraction have to actually be witnessed by a cop.

A 49-year old father of three from the UK shares how bicycling helped him recover from a brain tumor, calling it as important to his recovery as his medications.

Your next custom-fitted Italian steel bike frame could come complete with gold-plated lugs and stays.

A 42-year old Dutch woman has been charged with attempted manslaughter for grabbing the arm of the country’s former legal protection minister as he rode his bike at a high rate of speed, causing him to fall heavily and break several ribs, as well as his pelvis and collarbone.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former world ‘cross champ Thalita de Jong is finally back in the women’s WorldTour, five years after a knee injury knocked the Belgian cyclist out of the sport’s top levels.

The Sportsman says seven-time Grand Tour winner Chris Froome is in the toughest fight of his career as he fights just to make the Israel–Premier Tech team for the Tour de France.

The coach of India’s international cycling team has been accused of sexual harassment and trying to force himself on one of the country’s top women’s cyclists.

The Spanish cycling community mourned the death of 87-year old Julio Jiménez, one of international cycling’s best climbers of the ’60s, after he was killed when the driver of the car he was in crashed into a wall.

 

Finally…

Nothing like a little 65 mph bike ride through the California desert. Your next bike could be the self-proclaimed Ferrari of ebikes, for the low, low price of just 18 grand.

And that feeling when jousting on bicycles with boat oars ends up pretty much the way you’d expect.

Jousting with oars on bicycles from WinStupidPrizes

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

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