Archive for Morning Links

Investing in Place fires at Healthy Streets LA, protected and crappy new bikeways, and more 6th Street Bridge misery

Call it friendly fire.

The well-respected advocacy group Investing in Place fired off the since-deleted tweet on the left, coming out against the Healthy Streets LA  ballot initiative.

While the organization praises the efforts of the proposal’s sponsors, they take issue with the initiative itself, which would require the city to build out the Mobility Plan 2035 any time a street included in it gets resurfaced.

As they note, it could result in a haphazard streetscape, given the city’s seemingly random resurfacing program, while taking decades to complete.

Which is still better than the mere 3% that has been built in the seven years since the plan was adopted by the city council.

Here’s how Investing in Place explains their opposition in a blog post.

But here is where we disagree, painting random disconnected blocks of bike lanes while our sidewalks remain cracked, our neighborhoods flood in the rain and wilt in the heat, and bus riders continue to lack seating and shelter will not get us the city that we are working toward.

If the City Council adopts the Healthy Streets L.A. Ballot Measure as written, it would be tying its mandate to the City’s resurfacing program – which is structurally flawed, unpredictable, and inequitable – meaning the ballot measure is unlikely to produce projects with the durable community and political support needed.

It also could pull attention and resources away from efforts to implement truly complete streets with shade, accessible sidewalks, bus shelters and benches, and lighting, none of which are delivered by resurfacing and restriping. We wrote about this last month, as well as a separate but related motion the LA City Council is currently working on. It’s on the latter that the city should be putting its time and effort.

Surprisingly, that appears to represent a fundamental misunderstanding of what the mobility plan entails.

It’s not just bike lanes, even though it subsumed the 2010 bike plan, including its innovative three-level bike network.

It also includes busways and pedestrian improvements, along with a new focus on Complete Streets. Or as the plan itself puts it, it represents a fundamental change in how future generations of Angelenos will interact with their streets.

If it ever gets built.

But while the Healthy Streets LA initiative only requires Los Angeles to implement the plan when streets are resurfaced, that is the minimal requirement.

There is nothing stopping the city from building out an entire bike lane or busway when the new law forces them to stripe a few blocks of it. Nor is there anything preventing local groups and residents from demanding that the city go beyond the mere requirements of the law to include things like trees, benches and human spaces.

Investing in Place also strangely raises the issue of equity.

Any policy developed must include the voices of those most impacted, especially when it comes to public access to public assets. And the best policy outcomes we’ve seen also include the perspective and insight of those working on implementing and doing this work for the public agencies. These are the very real issues that are addressed by the motion put forward by Council President Martinez and discussed at length at the Public Works and Transportation Committees, but left to chance by the ballot measure. As a result, we have deep reservations about the ballot measure…

Until impacted communities living with the historical disinvestment in streets and sidewalks in their neigborhoods are given seats at the table, it is critical to stay the course with the Council President’s motion. Included in the Council President’s motion, and absent from the Ballot measure, is the plan to address the long-standing need for a Capital Infrastructure Plan that coordinates and prioritizes public works and transportation projects with equity baked in from the start.

I say strangely, because the voices of those impacted by the mobility plan were baked in during its drafting, through years of public meetings throughout the Los Angeles area and a lengthy public comment period.

It also came before the Planning Commission, neighborhood councils, city council committees and finally, the full city council itself.

At every point, there was a focus on equity and serving those too often ignored.

Then there’s the extensive support received by the Healthy Streets LA plan, with a lengthy list of sponsors, many of whom share a focus on equity, as shown on the plan’s website.

Our coalition includes a broad range of climate, transportation, business and labor organizations: Streets For All, LACBC, Climate Resolve, Streets Are For Everyone, MoveLA, CalBike, LAANE, Los Angeles Walks, The Eagle Rock Association, National Health Foundation, Neighborhood Council Sustainability Alliance, UNITE HERE Local 11, People For Mobility Justice, T.R.U.S.T. South LA, East Side Riders, East Valley Indivisibles, Pacoima Beautiful, BizFed, Coalition for Clean Air, FastLinkDTLA, LA Business Council, Sierra Club.

It also enjoys a long list of endorsements from neighborhood councils in virtually every region of the city.

The following Neighborhood Councils have passed letters of support: Arts District Little Tokyo, Atwater Village, Boyle Heights, CANNDU, Canoga Park, Central Hollywood, Coastal San Pedro, Cypress Park, Eagle Rock, East Hollywood, Echo Park, Elysian Valley Riverside, Glassell Park, Granada Hills South, Harbor Gateway North, Harbor Gateway South, Hollywood Hills West, LA32, Los Feliz, MacArthur Park, Mid City, Mid City West, NoHo, NoHo West, North Area Development, North Hills West, North Westwood, Northridge East, Northwest San Pedro, Panorama City, Porter Ranch, Rampart Village, Reseda, Silver Lake, Sun Valley, United Neighborhoods, Van Nuys, Voices, West Adams, West LA/Sawtelle.

That broad-based level of support is exemplified by this map showing the distribution of petition signers, reaching every corner of Los Angeles.

Here’s what Streets For All founder Michael Schneider had to say when I asked him to comment.

We respectfully disagree with Investing in Place’s take on Healthy Streets LA, a citizen-led ballot measure that has been supported by over 100,000 Angelenos across the entire city, 40 neighborhood councils, and a coalition of labor, business, climate, and safe streets advocacy organizations.

But here’s the real problem.

Once the signatures for the ballot initiative are verified and counted, it will be approved for a vote of the people. That should happen by the end of this month.

That will start a 20 day clock that will give the city council the option of approving the Healthy Streets LA proposal as written, or place it on the November ballot.

Investing in Place argues for another alternative, which would involve negotiations between backers of the proposal, city agencies, and other interested parties.

However, only the first approach would carry the force of law, which can only be changed by a vote of the people.

In other words, the concept of improving city streets and expanding who they serve would finally be carved in stone, forcing city leaders to build a more livable city for everyone.

The approach Investing in Place recommends, though, would have the city council adopt a modified version of the proposal that could be changed at anytime, for any reason, by a simple vote of the council.

So if a less favorable council is elected at some point in the future, the improvements to our streets could be halted overnight. Or some councilmember could decide they don’t want a certain project included in the mobility plan, and get the council to override it.

The first approach would force the city to do what it has already committed to.

The other would too, unless someone, somewhere disagrees. Which is guaranteed in a city where drivers have enjoyed unquestioned privilege and hegemony over our streets since the demise of the Red Cars.

And the rest of us have been forced to live with their scraps.

Here, again, is Streets For All’s Michael Schneider.

There is no conflict between city council adopting Healthy Streets LA as an ordinance when it reaches council (which would enshrine it into law versus be at the whim of a future city council vote), and us all working together under the great initiative by Council President Martinez to make sure the mobility plan is implemented with an equitable lens, the mobility plan is expanded beyond paint and bollards, departments are coordinated, and all of the other things in her motion, which we support.

It’s an approach that’s been proven successful in other cities that have tried it.

And which should prove just as successful here.

As long as our fellow advocates don’t sink us with friendly fire.

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We have new protected bikeways in the local news today.

And real ones, this time. Unlike the the ones on the 6th Street Viaduct.

First up, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports the long-promised curb-protected bike lanes on 7th Street in DTLA are finally under construction.

The $18.7 million streetscape project stretches one mile, from San Pedro Street in the east to Figueroa Street in the west. The first few blocks leading to and from Figueroa were funded by the developers as a permitting condition for building the Wilshire Grand Center at 7th and Fig.

Linton reports the project will include “expanded sidewalks, pedestrian/cyclist-scale lighting, bus islands, and new trees,” in addition to LA’s first significant curb-protected bikeway

Next up is a new separated bike path along El Segundo Blvd, which I’m just learning about.

However, it seems like for every decent bikeway, we have to accept a crappy one.

Like this one in Echo Park, where slow moving riders crawling uphill have to mix it up with impatient drivers, while downhill riders who could likely keep up with cars get a regular bike lane.

Exactly the opposite of what common sense would dictate. Although anyone who expects to find common sense on LA streets is likely to have a long damn wait.

………

Continuing our seemingly endless discussion of the new 6th Street Viaduct, Curbed’s Alissa Walker describes its ostensibly protected bike lanes as “a bike lane built for a car crash.”

Meanwhile, KPCC’s Air Talk discusses bike safety and entirely predictable street takeovers on the viaduct.

And with everything else going on with the bridge, why the hell not?

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Old Pasadena is hosting a ride this weekend.

And no, that’s not a reference to the city’s residents.

Meanwhile, the LACBC is doing a craft beer ride to the South Bay with Sierra Nevada this Saturday.

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

No bias here. A San Diego letter writer says just paint a line on the sidewalk and make people on bicycles ride there, so his car can keep going zoom zoom on the streets.

This is why people keep dying on the roads. A Seattle area woman made just a brief stop behind bars before being released, after running down a bike-riding woman while driving at nearly three times the legal alcohol limit — at ten in the morning.

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

There’s a special place in a hell for the schmuck who harassed a 22-year old Welsh college student as he followed her on his bike for ten minutes making inappropriate comments. Seriously, don’t do that. Ever. Period.

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Local

KTLA talks to an expert about what to look for in an ebike.

 

State 

There’s not a pit deep enough for the Adalanto man who attacked a 17-year old boy with a tire iron for no apparent reason as the kid was riding with his mom, leaving him unconscious and bleeding in the street.

Hats off to San Ramon’s Monte Vista High School mountain biking team, who’ve assigned themselves to remove invasive plants from Mt. Diablo.

Sad news from San Rafael, where a 67-year old man was killed in a fall when he rode his ebike off a steep ridgeline.

Bikeshare and e-scooters could be coming back to Davis.

 

National

How to clean your bike helmet.

The Bike League is asking for donations to their Drive Less, Bike More Matching Challenge; the organization is 33% of the way towards their $50,000 goal.

Road Bike Rider offers a plan for beginners to ride 100 miles a week.

Accused killer Kaitlin Armstrong will face trial in October after pleading not guilty to the murder of gravel cyclist Mariah “Mo” Wilson in Austin, Texas.

Some Chicago officials want to legalize speeding, with a proposal to toss out speed cam tickets for anyone going less than ten miles over the speed limit.

Bicycling and walking rates are up in Detroit, as residents cope with high gas prices.

This is who we share the road with. A Jersey City NJ councilwoman was cited for hit-and-run and failing to report a traffic collision, for driving off after hitting a bike rider, and leaving the victim with minor injuries; she claims she struck her head in the crash and reported it once she realized what happened. Sure, let’s go with that.

It’s a sad comment when a man can climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, but can’t survive riding a bike on DC streets.

 

International

A writer for Wired discovers that you can, indeed, do a 70-mile London dirt ride on a Brompton foldie, although the bike fared better than he did.

A British op-ed says teaching bicycling in schools will help foster equity.

An off-duty paramedic in the UK will spend five years and four months behind bars for killing a man riding a bicycle, when he tried driving to a party after downing ten pints of Guinness.

An English writer learns firsthand what it’s like to ride France’s legendary Alpe d’Huez.

Bike riders in Düzce, Turkey lay down in the street to stop traffic and finally get noticed by drivers.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tadej Pogačar outsprinted Tour de France leader Jonas Vingegaard to win Wednesday’s stage 17, but was unable to make a dent in Vingegaard’s more than two minute lead; Pogačar has one last mountain stage left to try to take the yellow jersey.

Former Tour de French champ Geraint Thomas is languishing in third place, over four minutes behind and unable to challenge the leaders.

Dutch sprinter Fabio Jakobsen fared just a tad worse, giving everything he had just to make the time cut on Wednesday’s mountaintop finish.

Cycling Weekly says American cycling needs another Lemond — or God forbid, another Lance. But, you know, without the dope and stuff in the latter’s case. Or the shotgun pellets in the former.

 

Finally…

Your next bike can tell you when the air is too bad to breathe. And yes, there’s an online community for you when you just want to say “fuck cars.”

Because of course there is.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

A breakup letter with 6th Street Viaduct, CalBike ED moves to People For Bikes, and CA ebike rebates fail to launch

He gets it.

Well, of course he does.

Michael Schneider, founder of the transformational transportation Political Action Committee Streets For All, is the latest to accuse Caltrans and LADOT failing to protect bike riders on the new $588 million 6th Street Viaduct.

Los Angeles’ Bureau of Engineering, LADOT, and Caltrans have sent a “love letter” that is actually a breakup letter to people on bikes. Whether intentional or not, it signals that the city doesn’t really care about the safety for people on bikes (or they do, unless the space is needed for cars). Spending $600M of our taxpayer dollars on a substandard multi modal bridge in 2022 isn’t acceptable. The striping should be changed ASAP to accommodate broken down cars and emergency vehicles in the center while physically protecting people on bikes with concrete and extending the lane for the full length of the bridge.

We’ve already discussed that failure several times in recent days. So take a moment to read Schneider’s Medium piece.

Then get mad.

Damn mad.

Because as much as we want to love the new bridge, city and state officials have made it clear that your life and safety is worth less to them than a broken-down car.

And it should come as no surprise to anyone that drivers on the bridge are already behaving badly.

Rendering from From 6th Street Viaduct Twitter account.

………

CalBike Executive Director Dave Snyder is leaving the statewide bicycle advocacy group.

Snyder has led the California Bicycle Coalition, better known as Calbike, nearly half of its existence, joining the 26-year old organization in 2010.

According to a press release posted by Bicycle Retailer and Industry News,

Under Snyder’s leadership, CalBike’s tenacious, hardworking team has passed model e-bike legislation, pushed through Complete Streets reform at Caltrans, defeated a helmet mandate, legalized protected bike lanes, and gotten several bills passed to protect bicyclists, including the Three Feet for Safety Law requiring motorists to give bicyclists 3 feet of space when passing. They have gotten more funding for bicycling as well, securing an increase in state-level funding for biking and walking from around $100M to over $1 billion, and winning $10M for e-bike purchase incentives.

CalBike has helped to coordinate more than twenty local advocacy organizations with a combined membership of over 100,000, influencing elections for the California State Assembly and Senate and building support for ballot measures such as the successful defeat in 2018 of a proposed repeal of the gas tax.

He’s leaving to take a position as Senior Director of Local Innovation with Colorado-based People For Bikes.

He’ll be missed.

Current CalBike Operations Manager Kevin Claxton will step in as Interim Director while the group conducts a search for new leadership.

………

Streetsblog continues to stay on top of California’s continued failure to launch a promised and fully funded ebike rebate program.

Despite the overwhelming success of Denver’s ebike rebate program, California’s minimally funded $10 million program, which was supposed to launch this month, has been dead on arrival, apparently due to the state’s inability to select anyone to administer it.

Putting off a decision adds delay to an already slow-moving process, and could push the program start date out until after the end of the year. Other sources of e-bike incentives, including under the Clean Cars for All program being handled by regional air districts, have been just as slow to get going.

It almost feels as if CARB is more than reluctant to offer these incentives, even though it is increasingly clear that e-bikes can be excellent replacements for private cars. Their carbon footprints, costs, parking requirements, and the space they take up on roads is also considerably less than that of electric cars, and CARB doesn’t seem to have much trouble pushing EVs as a climate solution.

Never mind that California provides $425 million to purchasers of electric vehicles, which offer far fewer public benefits than electric bicycles.

You’d think that a cost of just 2.3% of the EV program while getting more cars off the road would be enough of an incentive for the state to get its shit together.

But apparently, you’d be wrong.

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Just 136,000 of the reasons I’m a fan of the East Side Riders.

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The LA area’s biggest bike race of the year is coming to the South Bay on Sunday.

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This is what can happen when a country’s leaders actually give a damn about ending traffic deaths.

Unlike a certain North American country we could name.

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

A Rhode Island man faces multiple charges for intentionally backing his car into a 12-year old boy’s bike, then following the kid and knocking him off his bike, all because he took offense at comments the boy made to his friends.

………

Local

You see a lot of things riding a bike.  Like a cackling arsonist starting a brush fire, and a bike rider with a bleeding head injury who insists on riding off rather than waiting for paramedics. Seriously, if someone insists you need medical help, listen to them.

 

State 

Bad news from Oxnard, where a 14-year old boy was critically injured when he was struck by a 19-year old van driver while riding his bike.

The writer of a Santa Barbara op-ed, who apparently doesn’t know the difference between a Class 1 bike path and Class 2 bike lanes, opposes the former because it could mean the loss of trees on a street that already has the latter.

Santa Rosa bike riders are complaining about the unexpected closure of a bike path due to a small homeless encampment that officials said was “impeding safe public use of the trail.”

 

National

Bicycling offers expert advice on how to lead a group ride, in an article that’s exclusive to subscribers. And apparently anyone who has access to Yahoo.

A writer for The Oregonian suggests leaving your car at home, and taking your bike on an Amtrak train if you’re headed to the World Athletics Championships in Eugene.

Sheriff’s deputies in Pocatello, Idaho are increasing bike and foot patrols to cope with high gas prices.

A kindhearted stranger stepped up to buy a nine-year old Michigan boy a new bicycle, after the bike he got for his birthday was stolen the first night he had it.

Political pranksters have added a faux historical marker denoting Brandon Falls, the coastal Delaware location where Joe Biden fell off his bike last month; the name is a play on the “Let’s go Brandon” chant that stands in for a much cruder epithet. Meanwhile, the former Mayor Pete — now Transportation Secretary Pete — says he’s just “glad to have a president who can ride a bicycle.”

 

International

A British Columbia farm region is offering a free bicycle lending program, allowing local residents, refugees and migrant workers to simply take one when they need it and return in good working order it when they’re done.

South London is being plagued by knife-armed bike thieves on motorcycles.

London’s Independent tries out the Brompton’s nee $4,400 ebike foldie for a month, and likes it.

This is who we share the road with. An English police commissioner was caught speeding five times in just three months, after vowing to crack down on heavy-footed drivers.

UK bike riders argue that slowing down due to the country’s extreme heat leads to more aggressive passing from overheated and sleep deprived drivers; it was a record-setting 104° in London yesterday.

Swedish mobility company Vässla is switching to e-cargo bikes to deliver their mopeds through crushing Parisian traffic.

Taiwan is now allowing bicyclists and scooter riders to forgo their face masks.

 

Competitive Cycling

Canada’s Hugo Houle captured the biggest win of his career yesterday, topping the podium as the Tour de France entered the Pyrenees for the final week of racing; Houle dedicated the win to his little brother, who was murdered by a hit-and-run driver ten years ago.

NBC offers a beginner’s guide to the Tour’s various leaders jerseys.

Twenty-four-year old Italian pro Marta Cavalli hopes to build on her second place finish in the Giro d’Italia Donne, as the inaugural eight-stage Tour de France Femmes prepares to rollout on Sunday.

L39ion of Los Angeles pulled its men’s and women’s teams out of Sunday’s Salt Lake Criterium after an incident of the final lap led to an exchange of blows following Saturday’s race; US pro crit champ Kendall Ryan says she’s astonished by the disrespect she gets as a member of the team.

 

Finally…

How to carry three on a tandem. Few things suck more than getting your new ebike stolen just an hour after you bought it.

And that feeling when you walk away from a promising cycling career to run the local post office.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

More on unsafe 6th Street Viaduct bike lanes, missing South Bay bike lanes amid climate crisis, and the joy of bike riding

Hats off to LAist for exploring the “now you se ’em, now you don’t” bike lanes on the nifty new $600 million 6th Street Viaduct.

Okay, just a mere $588 million.

Which surely could have bought better bike lanes than these.

As you’ll recall, the bridge, which pays homage to the classic but crumbling 1930s original, was built with a safe, barrier-protected walkway. And unsafe, Class IV semi-protected bike lanes on the other side of the barrier, protected only by easy-to-drive-over rubber curbs with big, squishy white bollards on bendy posts that wouldn’t stop anything.

Apparently, that was intentional.

LADOT was tasked with striping the pavement on the bridge and also worked with the construction contractor on the design and installation of the bike lanes, according to spokesperson Colin Sweeney. He said the decision to place the bike lanes outside the concrete walls that protect the pedestrian walkways came from Caltrans.

“Since there are no shoulders on the viaduct, Caltrans requested that the bike lanes be ‘permeable’ to act as an emergency lane,” Sweeney told LAist, saying the bike lanes offer “the highest level of protection that could be accommodated by the width of the bridge while also allowing emergency vehicles to enter if needed.”

Never mind that it’s also permeable for out-of-control truckers and distracted drivers, who will only feel a little jolt before slamming into someone on a bicycle.

And never mind the east end of the bridge, where’s there’s no protection at all — forcing riders to mix it up with usually speeding, and too often uncaring motorists.

Let alone the lack of safe connections leading to or from the bridge.

To call it a fail from a bike rider’s perspective is a massive understatement. Like maybe a $588 million understatement.

But this quote from the story sums the sad situation up as well as anything else.

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Never mind the iffy bike lanes.

It was nice of Caltrans and the 6th Street Viaduct designers to include these nifty viewing grandstands for the inevitable burnouts and sideshows.

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What if they threw a climate crisis and nobody came?

Or cared.

Bad Mom, Good Mom takes a deep dive into the confluence of the ambitious South Bay Bicycle Master Plan and global atmospheric CO2 levels, which were 392 ppm when the plan was adopted in 2011.

And now stand 36 ppm higher.

Yet just like LA’s bike and mobility plans, the South Bay plan has been largely forgotten by the cities it was supposed to save, and has now been downgraded even further with a Local Traffic Network replacing the promised bike lanes, as CO2 levels — and the risk to bike riders — continue to climb.

Many of them children on their way to school, as the piece points out. Kids who should have had a safe route there by now.

But now won’t. And won’t have cleaner air to breathe.

Or a livable planet to do it on.

Go ahead and read the whole piece. We’ll wait.

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The best piece you’ll read today comes from a reporter for NPR, who manages to capture the sheer peace and joy of riding a bicycle better than I’ve ever done.

As well as the inherent contradiction of being a serious cyclist when riding is so much fun.

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

No bias here. Someone asks about a large group of bike riders in downtown Santa Barbara, and the online conversation quickly devolves into accusations of wealthy white recreational bike riders running stop signs. Sort of like any other online discussion of bikes.

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

The man who infamously rode his bicycle down the aisle to loot a San Francisco drug store has been arrested for shoplifting again, after serving just half of a 16 month sentence.

A 28-year old Toronto woman faces carjacking charges for allegedly riding up to a car on a bicycle, before pulling out the 70-year old woman driving and taking off with her car.

An Aussie bike rider is accused of repeatedly hitting a woman he says cut him off with her car; police say there’s nothing they can do without knowing who he is. Unfortunately, video of the incident doesn’t appear to work in this country.

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Local

CicLAvia is teaming with Motional to host a free panel discussion titled Talking Innovation and Safe Streets at the LA Cleantech Incubator tomorrow evening.

A bicyclist was hospitalized in unknown condition after being struck by a driver in Canyon Country Monday afternoon.

 

State 

San Diego’s Rouleur Brewing Company will donate all the proceeds from the sale of their new hazy New England-style IPA to the Moriah Wilson Foundation in honor of the late cyclist.

A pair of Twentynine Palms residents suffered serious injuries when the bicycle they were sharing was struck by a hit-and-run driver Saturday night.

 

National

Livestrong recommends their picks for the best bike mirrors, which aren’t just for old guys on ‘bents anymore.

Bicycling recommend the best rear bike lights you can buy on Amazon. Although these are pretty damn good for just 13 bucks and change, too. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Triathlete offers advice on how to make your pedals go round more efficiently.

Evidently, city officials in Pueblo, Colorado don’t think there’s room in the planned 20-foot wide sidewalks on each side of a redesigned street to make space for the existing 5-foot wide bike lanes.

Wyoming considers charging mountain bike user fees to fund essential trail work.

A Chico, California woman was the victim of a predatory attack by a food-conditioned grizzly bear last year along the banks of Montana’s Blackfoot River, made famous by A River Runs Through It.

An Iowa man will spend up to ten years behind bars for killing a bike rider in South Dakota while driving under the influence; he claims he never saw the victim, who was riding in broad daylight wearing high-vis with a flashing red taillight.

Spectrum News 1 discovers the volunteer-driven ghost bike project in Austin, Texas to memorialize people killed riding bicycles in Central Texas.

Thirteen fraternity members from my alma mater are riding 3,400 miles across the US to raise funds for Alzheimer’s research. So far they’ve raised $96,000 of the $150,000 goal, according to the story, although their website shows just half of that.

Once again, a bicyclist on a cross-country tour has been killed. A rider with a group riding to California from Savannah, Georgia died in an apparent collision outside Norman, Oklahoma. Although the only mention of a driver was to say they weren’t at fault.

Lonely Planet recommends the seven best bike rides if you ever find yourself riding on Cape Cod.

 

International

An 80-year old Edmonton, Alberta man is riding his ebike over 8,000 miles from Alaska to Panama City, accompanied by his relatively youthful 69-year old friend.

Toronto bicyclists took over the city’s High Park, riding laps around the roadway to protest police targeting bike riders breaking the low 12 mph speed limit.

James Corden, host of The Late Late Show, was in a heated altercation with another London bike rider who cut across his path and caused Corden to come off his bike, narrowly avoiding falling in front of traffic. However, the other guy did apologize.

A London newspaper offers advice on riding in the city’s current 100° heatwave. All of which you could probably come up with yourself with a little thought.

Finishing our London trifecta, bicycling rates are up 25% in the city over pre-pandemic levels.

Students at a Kochi, India high school have formed a 150-member bicycle brigade to promote bicycling to city residents and cut traffic to the school.

 

Competitive Cycling

Belgium’s Yves Lampaert was left fuming after losing a chunk of flesh from his leg when a dog wandered in front of the peloton during Friday’s 12th stage of the Tour de France; no word on whether the dog was injured.

Welsh cyclist Owain Doull hit the pavement after riding over a stray water bottle in Sunday’s 15th stage.

Cycling News looks back on how the Tour overcame man-eating bears and walls of snow to conquer the Pyrenees.

Rapha offers a short film examining the brother and sister duos anchoring the L39ion of Los Angeles cycling team.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you’re looking for a big, heavy bike trailer with a hard to use brake. Uncool bicycling accessories due for a comeback.

And this is why the pros are in the Tour de France, and you’re not.

Although in my case, I’m just too damn old and falling apart.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

LA Times says prioritize people not cars, hit-and-run cop hits bike-riding teen, and racial profiling getting worse in traffic stops

They get it.

The Los Angeles Times says it’s time for California to prioritize people, not cars, by eliminating parking requirements in new developments near transit.

Or maybe they could just eliminate parking requirements, period.

Most cities require new residential and commercial developments to be built with lots of on-site parking, no matter if the spots are needed or desired. Typically, cities mandate one to two parking spaces per unit in a residential development. It can cost $55,000 per parking spot in a midsize apartment project in Los Angeles, according to one analysis. That drives up the cost of construction and makes it difficult for smaller or less pricey projects to pencil out. The expense of building parking is passed along to tenants and buyers, whether they want the spots or not…

Is all that parking really necessary? Oftentimes, no. A 2019 review of parking requirements examined 10 developments in Southern California built with just the minimum number of spots required by local laws and found that peak parking utilization was 56% to 72% at each development. Localities were demanding more parking than needed.

A pair of bills in the state legislature, AB 2097 and SB 1067 take different approaches to problem, one significantly stronger than the other.

But either one could provide a necessary first step in decoupling parking from housing, and reducing the stranglehold cars have on our streets.

And our wallets.

………

It’s hard enough to get the cops to take hit-and-run seriously.

But what do you do when the driver is a cop?

Police use car to knock over a teenage bicyclist in Chicago from chibike

These three Chicago kids might have an attitude when it comes to cops, not unlike a lot kids these days.

But in this case, it seems to be well deserved.

The incident starts with a police SUV following three teens as they ride their bikes, before pulling up next to them to challenge one of the boys for using his phone while he rides.

They then hit one of the boys with their police cruiser before backing off, and fleeing the scene without stopping.

There’s little argument that the officers screwed up, and should have stopped their vehicle and called in a supervisor.

But they didn’t.

Which makes them no better than any other hit-and-run driver.

………

Naturally, the Chronicle hides the story behind their draconian paywall, which blocks even casual readers.

But the problem of biased police stops appears to just be getting worse. And recent history tells us it’s just as bad, if not worse, for people on bikes.

………

San Diego had an impressive turnout for this year’s Pride Ride.

………

It looks like Premier League soccer team Newcastle United is one of us.

Okay, maybe just three of them.

………

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

No bias here. A writer for the Robb Report says keep your Lycra bikewear on the bike, and out of cafes and the office.

A Michigan driver got out of his pickup and pushed a woman into traffic, apparently for the crime of accidentally hitting his truck bed with her handlebar after he blocked the crosswalk and forced her to go around him.

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

An 82-year old San Diego pedestrian and an ebike rider in his 50s both suffered serous brain injuries when the lightless bicyclist slammed into the older man at a high rate of speed; fortunately, neither injury was considered life-threatening.

A Houston man was arrested by sheriff’s deputies after shooting another man multiple times following an argument at a gas station, despite trying to make his getaway on a bicycle.

New York police are looking for an ebike-riding man who sexually assaulted two women about an hour apart, threatening both with a knife.

………

Local

The daughter of actress Gabrielle Union and former NBA star Dwayne Wade is one of us, as Union teaches the three-year old how to ride a bike with training wheels.

Kylie Jenner showed off her new $24,000 Louis Vuitton bicycle. The perfect bike for anyone with too many dollars and not enough sense.

 

State 

San Diego continues to pay for broken sidewalks and dilapidated bike lanes, forking out a total of over $333,000 in legal settlements in just 30 days.

Fresno police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who left a bike-riding man bleeding in the street; the victim was hospitalized in stable condition.

Two hundred volunteers turned out to help build bicycles with the NHL’s San Jose Sharks, with a goal of giving away 500 bikes to kids in the community (scroll down, if you can get past the paywall). Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

One more example of officials keeping dangerous drivers on the road until it’s too late, as a 78-year old Berkeley driver crashed into a couple in their 70s walking in a crosswalk — just four days after he crashed his car into an 83-year-old woman in another crosswalk; one of his victims remains in the ICU.

Contra Costa County’s Mount Diablo State Park will have 30 bike turnouts installed today to allow drivers to safely pass bicyclists, who make up 60% of all vehicular traffic on the roadway.

 

National

Newsweek considers the best ebikes to buy and ride this year, ranging from a $899 SWFT commuter to a $3,100 Cannondale.

She gets it. An op-ed from a Honolulu writer says Hawaii has a flat tire when it comes to bikeways, making little progress since the 1980s; this comes after several students filed suit against the state for operating a transportation system that harms the climate, prioritizing highways over more environmentally friendly modes of transportation.

Speaking of Hawaii, the island state is now offering rebates up to $500 on the purchase of an ebike; however, the program is limited to students, non-car owners and low-income buyers.

A Japanese man who recently moved to California with his family writes about the racist assault where a Portland man attacked him and his daughter while yelling anti-Japanese slurs; his five-year old daughter now wants to leave the US.

Around 5,500 people completed a 206-mile ride from Seattle to Portland, with roughly 1,000 finishing the ride in a single day, and the rest riding in the next day.

A Phoenix man is recovering in the hospital after he was shot by a gunman who stole his bike; no word on whether he was riding it at the time.

Missouri residents are honoring the 125th anniversary of the famed Buffalo Soldiers 1897 bike ride covering 1,900 miles from Missoula, Montana to St. Louis.

A Chicago columnist says he didn’t take wearing a bike helmet seriously, until he was hit by a 70-something, possibly distracted, driver who said she just didn’t see him.

A Louisville KY TV station asks if things are getting worse for pedestrians and bike riders on the city’s streets. You can probably guess the answer without ever riding there.

Pittsburgh Magazine credits local advocacy group BikePGH with a successful 20-year battle to make the city more bike friendly.

Yes, please. New York will now require new drivers to take a bike and pedestrian safety course before getting a license. Thanks to Victor Bale for the link.

Hundreds of Atlanta bike riders turned out to honor Congressman and civil right icon John Lewis, on the two-year anniversary of his death.

A Florida lawyer won an $8.2 million settlement over the death of a 79-year old woman who fell off a drawbridge when the operator opened it as she was walking her bike across.

 

International

Big news in the race for mayor of Toronto, as famed international urbanist Gil Penalosa tossed his chapeau into the ring.

A Toronto writer explores the proper way to make a left turn on your bike. Actually, the best way to make a left is whatever you feel comfortable with that won’t get you killed.

Devon, England’s 18-year old Piano Bike Girl has become one of the most recognizable buskers in the coastal city, performing on a piano mounted on a three-wheeled bike.

Good news for Welsh bicyclists. The country’s new 20 mph speed applies to cars but not bicycles. So feel free to blithely ride past puttering drivers, nose-thumbing optional.

An ebike conversion kit from the UK’s Swytch now comes with a battery that can fit in a large pocket.

British bikewear maker Fat Lad at the Back unveils an attention getting outdoor ad campaign reading Fat C*n’t, and continuing on the next line, Actually Fat Can, suggesting it’s actually an “a” that’s missing.

Pink Bike looks at the most exciting new products from this year’s Eurobike trade show in Frankfurt, Germany, while Cyclist shares five weird and wonderful things for the show. I could totally rock that mirrored disco ball bike helmet, myself.

More proof of the everyday utility of bicycles, as Ukrainian refugees flee to the southern village of Zelenodolsk, most arriving by bikes or wheelchairs.

PETA, aka People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, hired bike riders to tow anti-wool billboards in front of an Aussie wool and sheep trade show.

 

Competitive Cycling

Australia’s Michael Matthews soloed to victory in Saturday’s 14th stage of the Tour de France, as Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar continued their battle for the yellow jersey.

Belgium’s Jasper Philipsen won the sprint for Sunday’s stage 15, while Vingegaard held onto the lead by a 2 minute 22 second margin, despite crashing 36 miles from the finish, in 100° temperatures.

L39ion of Los Angeles founder Justin Williams was DQ’d, along with Best Buddies’ Michael Hernandez, following a dust-up on the final lap of the Salt Lake Criterium; L39ion swept the podium in both the men’s and women’s races.

 

Finally…

Probably not the best idea to try to sell a bike back to the person you stole it from. Now you, too, can own your very own wooden bicycle for the low, low price of just — wait for it — nearly 24 grand.

And how else would you transport a tree?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Koretz gas ban called election gimmick, 6th Street Viaduct values cars above people, and Metro Bike wants your opinion

My apologies once again for yesterday’s unexcused absence. 

I’m still dealing with bouts of disabling dizziness and queasiness that can stop me in my tracks, as it did Wednesday night. 

My doctors continue to assure me that it’s a form of migraine. Even if it hasn’t responded to diet, medication or any of the other treatments they were just darn sure would work. 

Which means this probably won’t be the last time it happens. 

And the next time won’t, either. 

Photo by Harrison Haines from Pexels.

………

He gets it.

Rick Cole has lead a handful of SoCal cities, including Ventura and Santa Monica, as well as serving as a deputy mayor in Los Angeles.

Which is to say, he knows what he’s talking about. And can spot a cheap political stunt a mile away.

Sorry, Paul Koretz.

The tweet may be hidden behind a sensitive content warning, for reasons that will forever escape me. Just click the View link to display it, or you can read it here

………

More proof that the designers of the new 6th Street Viaduct put cars ahead of people.

Especially people on two wheels.

Speaking of which, the Bicycle Advisory Committee’s Planning and Bikeways Engineering Subcommittees will discuss the bridge’s “bikeway shortcomings” at Tuesday’s Virtual meeting.

The committees will also discuss the Northvale Gap on the Expo bike path, and bike safety in Griffith Park, among other issues.

………

Someone tell LADOT it would help if they put a link to the survey in their tweets.

………

Metro is teaming with Active SGV to host a ride in Pomona tomorrow.

………

Gravel Bike California takes a ride through the redwoods of Santa Cruz.

………

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

A naked Scottish couple riding a tandem were attacked by a driver, who made a U-turn to come back and hurl abuse at them — calling them prostitutes — before swerving his car into the couple; they’re continuing on their 837-mile fundraising ride despite suffering minor injuries.

British bike riders were quick to point out to a local police department why urging people to Cycle Like You Drive is a very, very bad idea.

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

Heartbreaking story from the UK, where a hit-and-run bicyclist will spend the next year behind bars for killing a 79-year old woman after rounding a corner while riding on the sidewalk.

………

Local

A writer for the LA Times recommends exploring Griffith Park on your bike, particularly since Griffith Park Drive has been closed to cars through Monday. And hopefully longer.

CicLAvia is hosting a CivSalon panel discussion on Wednesday to discuss how innovation can make our streets safer and more equitable.

 

State 

Calbike joins with 17 other agencies to call for and end to freeway expansion in the Golden State.

Streetsblog says Caltran’s Complete Streets Action plan is basically a list of specific actions the agency will take to encourage a shift towards equitable and safer transportation. Let’s hope so, anyway.

Call it a win-win. San Diego’s new 2.3-mile bike lane on Pershing Drive through Balboa Park will improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians, as well as including a project to replace aging stormwater lines to prevent flooding and reduce water pollution.

A 58-year Rancho Bernardo man completed a 3,300-mile ride across the US, raising over $20,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to fight type 1 diabetes.

Berkeley’s new 12-block parking and barrier protected bike lane connects the north and south sections of the city’s downtown.

Sonoma Magazine offers the ultimate guide to riding in the wine country county.

 

National

They get it. A retail business website says retailers usually fight new bike lanes, arguing they will hurt their business — but usually end up with higher sales after they’re built.

A British man completed his 4,000-mile bike ride across the US, raising nearly $30,000 for charity in the process — including the equivalent of over $2,300 from Dame Judy Dench.

The Pro’s Closet and The Radavist’s John Watson have teamed up on a special-edition gravel bike inspired by a Toyota Land Cruiser; only eight will be made, selling for just under nine grand.

Walmart is recalling a bike helmet that was a replacement for a recalled bike helmet.

It’s the 125th anniversary of the legendary Buffalo Soldier’s 41-day, 1,900 mile bike ride, proving bicycles could efficiently move troops. Until those damn cars and trucks took their place.

Pay full freight for a bike from Colorado bikemaker Alchemy Bikes, and they’ll put you up in a Golden CO hotel, and spring for beer and a breakfast burrito.

Tragic news from Colorado, whee a six-year old boy died days after he was bitten by a rattlesnake while riding bikes with his family.

Cars are still banned from the Northern entrances to Yellowstone due to flooding damage, but bikes are being allowed in for short rides; bicyclists call the carefree carfree experience “magical.”

It’s illegal to stand on the pedals while you ride your bike in Indiana.

Sad news from Missouri, where a 44-year old man was killed when a sheriff’s deputy rear-ended his bicycle; no word on why the deputy couldn’t see a grown man on a bike directly in front of him.

The alleged DUI driver who hit three pedestrians standing on an Illinois bike path, killing two young men, saw half the charges against her dismissed, but will face trial on the seven remaining counts.

A self-described “avid cyclist” says there has to be a better use for St. Paul, Minnesota’s money than removing parking spaces to build a two-way bikeway. There are no more chilling words than those that begin with “I’m an avid cyclist, but…”

There’s a special place in hell for whoever attacked a popular New York restaurant worker to steal his ebike as the man ride home from work, putting him in a coma he never recovered from.

Once again, a driver ran down a bike rider, then got out of his car to remove the victim’s bicycle from underneath before fleeing the scene, this time in North Carolina. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

A Florida woman was lucky to survive after a driver hit her and a friend as they were riding their bikes, dragging the woman 50 feet beneath the car as the driver fled the scene; her friend escaped with just minor injuries.

 

International

London’s Evening Standard takes a look at the city’s bikeshare tribes, with tongue placed firmly in cheek.

Police in Britain’s New Forest urge drivers to slow down so they don’t crash into the donkeys. Or the people on bicycles .

That feeling when you fly to London, but your $16,500 bike and luggage fly to Naples.

Former pro cyclist and Rwandan genocide survivor Adrien Niyonshuti beat the pro peloton to the top of France’s legendary Alpe d’Huez, despite riding a 40 pound, single speed Qhubeka bike built for use in Africa.

Bike Radar looks at the best “weird and wonderful” tech from Germany’s Eurobike trade show.

The head of Russia’s Federal Air Transport Agency reportedly is in intensive care after suffering multiple injuries falling off his bicycle; as usual, the country denies anything even happened. Although his injuries suggest something more serious than a simple fall off a bike.

A 36-year old Indian man has been riding throughout the country for the past three years to call attention to organic farming and the problem of single-use plastics.

CNN looks at how Abu Dhabi became the world’s hottest bicycling city. No, literally.

Hong Kong is considering requiring a helmet for anyone riding a bicycle, tricycle or multi-wheeled bike. Evidently, they have a lot of five, six and seven wheeled bikes. 

 

Competitive Cycling

Yellow jersey bearer Tadej Pogačar cracked on Wednesday’s 11th stage of the Tour de France, allowing Denmark’s Jonas Vingegaard to slip into the lead.

He wasn’t the only Slovenian to crack. Primož Roglič followed suit the next day after a series of attacks by his Jumbo-Visma team, in an effort to widen Vingegaard’s lead; Vingegaard ended the day 2:22 ahead of Pogačar, who was unable to successfully attack on Thursday’s ride up Alpe d’Huez.

Twenty-two-year old Brit Tom Piddock won Thursday’s stage, besting veteran Chris Froome on the mountain top finish.

The top American is now Sepp Kuss, nearly 25 minutes behind the leader in 17th place, and one notch above Nielson Powless in 18th. Meanwhile, 21-year old Tour rookie Quinn Simmons vows to keep attacking.

Atlas Obscura dives into the chaos of the Tour’s Fast and Furious Feed Zone.

 

Finally…

Your next ebike could be good for 125 miles. Why stop riding at the water’s edge?

And let your bike be your tent pole on your next bikepacking trip.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Streets For All virtual happy hour tonight, SoCal’s killer highway getting bike lanes in OC, and Prime Day bike deals

Let’s start with a reminder that Streets For All is hosting their latest virtual happy hour this evening, featuring Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis.

………

Southern California’s killer highway could be getting a little safer in Orange County.

According to the Daily Pilot, the stretch of PCH that runs through Huntington Beach is scheduled for a number of improvements, as part of a $14.8-million Caltrans project.

Among the scheduled improvements are rehabilitating the pavement — whatever that means — replacing traffic loop detectors and guardrails, and upgrading facilities to Americans with Disabilities Act standards.

In addition, the plans call for adding Class II painted bike lanes, although they will be downgraded to a mere bike route in some areas, forcing riders to fight for road space with impatient drivers.

That could mean relying on the dreaded sharrows, which studies show could be worse than nothing. And which appear to exist only to help drivers improve their aim and thin the herd.

Additional plans call for $21.2 million to be spent on two projects in Newport Beach, Huntington Beach and Seal Beach, including unspecified pedestrian and bicycle upgrades.

………

Today’s common theme is Prime Day bike deals.

………

A Twitter user responds to Governor Newsom’s call to sue gunmakers by suggesting we should be able to sue the makers of killer cars.

Especially since the news media insists on holding their drivers blameless.

Not just cars that kill, but cars, trucks and SUVs that are literally built to kill, with no thought to the survival of anyone outside the vehicle.

And which are too often sold in a way that actually encourages the most extreme and dangerous behavior.

Thanks to How The West Was Saved for the heads-up. 

………

A new crowdsourced book says it’s not too late to stave off a carbon-fueled climate disaster.

Let’s hope they’r right.

Thanks to Pedal Love for the tip.

………

A lifelong car enthusiast explains why he’s starting to hate cars, and why owning multiple cars is an insanely bad idea.

And “why car dependency is terrible and why car enthusiasts should care about reducing traffic fatalities.”

Took the words right out of my mouth.

………

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

There’s a special place in hell for whoever painted swastikas along a Rhode Island bike path.

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

Palo Alto police arrested a 34-year old Mountain View man for robbing a 16-year old bike-riding boy; he was arrested riding a bike while carrying meth and drug paraphernalia, as well as the knife he threatened the teenager with.

………

Local

Streetsblog reports on last week’s groundbreaking for the Rail-to-Rail active transportation project through South LA and Inglewood.

Heartbreaking story from the LA Times about a young Black man who lived alone and worked remotely, whose body was found five days after he logged off from work, after apparently dying in his sleep from an undetected heart condition; among his possessions was a new bicycle with just four miles on the odometer.

 

State 

A pair of projects in the Coachella and Imperial Valleys have received grants from the Southern California Association of Governments, part of 26 grants up to $15,000 for active transportation projects in the six-county SCAG region.

More sad news from Northern California, where a Visalia bike rider was killed in a rear-end collision.

San Jose received a $10 million grant to install street lights and build out bike lanes on a nearly five-mile stretch of one of the city’s most dangerous roads.

The recent decision to permanently ban cars from a portion of JFK Drive through San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park could go to the voters, after opponents turned in enough signatures to get the question on the November ballot. Or opponent, actually, as the signature gathering effort was funded entirely by an heiress to the Dow Chemical fortune, who’s family apparently hasn’t done enough environmental damage yet.

A speeding hit-and-run driver ran down a man riding a bicycle in San Francisco’s Mission District, driving off with the bike’s front wheel still stuck to their grill; fortunately, the victim is expected to survive. Although the driver may regret leaving the car’s license plate behind.

 

National

Muscle and Fitness recommends bicycling as a low-impact exercise in the great outdoors that provides something for everyone from elite athletes to people battling serious illnesses, focusing on a survivor of stage 4 pancreatic cancer who rides 50 to 100 miles a week.

Money Inc lists ten jobs that often require using a bicycle.

Peloton is outsourcing its stationary bike manufacturing, shutting down its bikemaking subsidiary and laying off 570 people; the layoffs follow more than 3,000 earlier job cuts.

Gear Junkie rates the year’s best mountain bike helmets.

Las Cruces, New Mexico is using special green paint to lower the surface temperature of bike lanes, while making them more visible to drivers.

A carfree Portland Millennial is spreading her “glorious bike propaganda” to her 16,000-plus Tik Tok followers.

Wisconsin’s 32 foot high fiberglass sculpture of an 1890’s man riding a Penny Farthing has been designated as the world’s biggest bicycling statue.

Unbelievable. A 40-year old Florida man faces vehicular homicide and hit-and-run charges for killing a 74-year old man who wasn’t even riding his bike at the time — or anywhere near the roadway; the speeding driver hit a mailbox on the wrong side of road before losing control, driving off the road and hitting the victim, then crashing into a building.

 

International

Streetsblog’s podcast The Brake talks with British environmental psychology expert Dr. Ian Walker about why high gas prices and other disincentives don’t get people out of their cars, and why even incentivizing other modes doesn’t always work.

British bike scribe and bicycling historian Carlton Reid examines how Milan, Italy tamed its streets with bikeways, ping pong and polka dot plazas, a move that proved so popular that the mayor was re-elected with nearly two-thirds of the vote — 20 points more than he received in 2016.

Electrek previews ebikes expected to make their debut at the Eurobike 2022 trade show, starting today in Frankfurt, Germany.

An Emirati website examines why Middle Eastern countries are lagging in the fight to reduce traffic deaths. Just wait until they see the US, which is going the wrong way entirely.

 

Competitive Cycling

Yesterday’s stage ten of the Tour de France came to a sudden and unexpected halt when a group of protesters blocked the roadway. A statement from the group Dernière Rénovation — aka Last Renovation — says they interrupted the stage to “stop the mad race towards the annihilation of our society,” adding they “can no longer remain spectators of the ongoing climate disaster.”

Former Tour de France champ Bradley Wiggins, who won the race a decade ago, was criticized for calling the protesters imbeciles.

Yes, there was actually a race after the road was cleared of protesters, with Danish rider Magnus Cort winning in a mountain top finish; Germany’s Lennard Kämna missed taking the yellow jersey by just 11 seconds.

Covid reared its ugly face in the Tour after all, with two riders dismissed after testing positive and another allowed to continue, just 24 hours after the peloton had gotten a premature all clear.

 

Finally…

Nothing like a 20-foot long, two way bike lane, with arrows directing you to crash into a pole. That feeling when you’re still waiting for your bike and luggage to arrive, ten days into a two-week Icelandic bicycling vacation.

And that feeling when you run into your idol while riding your bike, then perform with him at a sold out concert.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Ban cars to rewild urban streets, 6th Street Viaduct bike lane barriers made for cars, and Buena Park considers new bike lanes

An op-ed in The Guardian questions whether cars should be banned from city streets.

The aim, in the authors’ view, is to enable form of “urban rewilding” to return streets to a their former state as a complex social ecosystem.

But just as swathes of our countryside were repurposed for farming, over the past century our city streets have been optimised for one goal: to move people around as quickly as possible, unhindered by anyone using public space for other purposes. This has its benefits – who wouldn’t argue that it is useful to be able to get from one side of a city to another quickly and efficiently – but they have come at a cost. Our shared urban environment, which used to be for everyone, is by and large dominated by moving and parked cars…

Is there another way? Well, some cities are starting to “rewild”. Barcelona is democratising its public space to include urban patios and parks, reclaiming its streets from traffic. Cars will still be allowed, but they will constitute just one use of public space, not the main reason for its existence.

In the same spirit, Groningen, in the Netherlands, known for its progressive steps to reclaim streets for bikes, recently adopted a set of guidelines that state that moving about is just one thing that a street should facilitate, as well as, for example, better health, an awareness of cultural history, or the city’s ability to adapt to the climate emergency. Paris, meanwhile, has a 15-minute city plan that aims to create self-sufficient communities where everything you need is within a 15-minute walk or cycle.

It’s worth taking a few minutes to read the whole thing.

Although my take is they’re asking the wrong question. Transit, walking and biking should be so robust that there’s no benefit to having a car.

And driving should be deprioritized to the point that other forms of transport will be more efficient and convenient.

………

Evidently, those weak-ass barriers on the new 6th Street Viaduct were purposely designed to allow cars to travel over them.

You know, so cars can block the lanes bike riders rely on instead of the ones that would inconvenience drivers.

………

Buena Park will consider adding new bike lanes at this evening’s council meeting.

………

When I visited Paris a couple decades back, this was a busy, loud and smelly highway despoiling the Seine.

This is better.

https://twitter.com/fietsprofessor/status/1546562719859576840

………

Gear Junkie offers a seven minute tutorial on how to jump your mountain bike.

Okay, make that how to jump using your mountain bike, not over it.

………

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

Once again, officials offer bike safety advice that begins and ends with wearing a helmet, although Spokane’s health department also suggests wearing sunscreen and drinking lots of water. Neither of which is likely to protect you from an inattentive driver. Then again, the helmet may not do a lot of good, either.

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

A 20-year old New York man faces a murder charge for allegedly jumping off a bikeshare bike to run up and punch a jeep passenger, then fatally shoot him as the driver ran for her life, in an attack caught on security cam.

English police are looking for a masked bike rider who rode up from behind and stabbed a woman in the back for no apparent reason.

………

Local

Streetsblog offers photos and highlights from Sunday’s CicLAvia.

Termed-out councilmember and pseudo-environmentalist Paul Koretz took a step in the right direction by following the lead of a number of Bay Area cities with a proposal to ban new gas stations in Los Angeles. Although he could have done more to clean our air by approving more bike and bus lanes, instead of blocking them for more than a dozen years. 

A Redditor says there’s a bike parking app for Android users, which needs more reports on bicycle parking spots from LA riders.

 

State 

Streetsblog offers an update on transportation bills still alive in the state legislature, with most scheduled for consideration in the Senate and Assembly Appropriations committees next month.

A new cargo bike from Chino’s KBO Bikes promises to carry up to 400 pounds, while priced at just $1,600.

Sad news from Fresno County, where a man was killed when his bike was rear-ended by a semi driver at 3:45 am.

San Francisco celebrated its own open streets event Sunday, while raising questions of what happened to promised protected bike lanes on Valencia Street.

 

National

A new accessory allows you to hide an Apple AirTag under your water bottle cage; meanwhile, a new 85-decibel bike alarm promises to work with Apple’s Find My app.

Denver’s renewed ebike rebate program drew so much interest it overwhelmed the website shortly after opening; 2,000 rebate vouchers are available ranging from $400 to $1,200, with half reserved for low-income buyers.

Chicago plans to give out 5,000 free single-speed commuter bicycles, locks and helmets over the next four years, though this year will likely be limited to around 500 bikes for participants in a youth jobs programs.

A group of Indiana cops are riding nearly 1,000 miles in 13 days to honor officers who died last year.

Sad news from Indiana, where the managing editor of a TV newsroom died of a heart attack while riding his bike on a local trail; he was just 51.

This is why people keep dying on our streets. New York’s vehicular homicide laws are specifically written to shield killer drivers from criminal charges unless they’re under the influence. (Hint: Stop the page from loading before the paywall popup blocks it. And no, you didn’t see that here.)

New York’s housing authority is banning ebikes in public housing after 25 battery fires, three years after they were warned about the problem; however, food delivery workers are protesting the proposed ban.

 

International

London traffic deaths dropped 22% to a record low last year, even though serious injuries increased; pedestrians were nearly half of the deaths, while bicyclists and motorcyclists made up most of the rest.

Twenty is plenty in Wales, where the British country is lowering speed limits from 30 mph to to 20 mph, over the objections of drivers.

He gets it. An Irish bike rider was awarded the equivalent of just over $30,000 following a dooring, after the judge said “People are not entitled to suddenly open doors without first checking that all is clear.”

Swedish sports equipment maker POC is teaming with an automotive safety company to develop a bike helmet with a built-in airbag.

Seriously? A Philippine senator has introduced a bill outlining the rights and responsibilities of bike riders — although it only mentions a single right, with eight responsibilities.

BTS band leader RM is the proud new owner of a limited edition, $17,000 Tod’s branded Colnago.

 

Competitive Cycling

In a modest surprise, mandatory Covid tests administered on yesterday’s rest day for the Tour de France all turned up negative. Which means the race and its riders can all go on.

On the 30th anniversary of Andy Hampsten’s solo win atop Alpe d’Huez, a new book examines what made him one of the Tour’s best climbers.

A writer for Cycling Tips says maybe it’s time to stop fetishizing the pain of pro cyclists who push “their bodies and minds beyond imaginable limits.”

 

Finally…

If you’re already out on bail for stealing a dozen bicycles, maybe wait awhile before going out and stealing 13 more. Cross-country ride training should always include stops at nearly a dozen pubs on the final day.

And apparently, the Tour de France runs through Springfield this year.

https://twitter.com/TamauPogi/status/1546218919169589248?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1546218919169589248%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-11-july-2022-294297

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

6th Street Viaduct bike lanes get failing grade from bicyclists, and LA mayor candidate Karen Bass rides CicLAvia

There were two big events in the Los Angeles bike world this weekend.

Although which will have a bigger impact in the long run remains to be seen.

First up is the official opening of the long awaited replacement for the crumbling, 1930’s 6th Street Viaduct.

The lengthy, multiple arched bridge stretching over the LA River, rail yards and highways received rave reviews from almost everyone, with outgoing LA Mayor Eric Garcetti calling it “our generation’s love letter to the city.”

With the exception of people on two wheels, that is, who questioned why a little more of the $588 million budget couldn’t have gone towards a better protected bike lane.

Something the LA Times just touched on.

“The layout is perfect,” Stevi Hardy said to her friends as she contemplated the design. “I wish the bike lane was more permanent. It would just be safer if there was a cement protection.”

The bike path is protected by plastic bollards with low rubber stoppers. A car had already rolled over one, according to a tweet.

Hardy and her husband are members of the Montebello Bicycle Coalition and trekked to the bridge with friends from various parts of Southeast Los Angeles County. Their son, Miller, who is 2, offered a thumbs-up from his shaded bicycle seat before doing his best Spider-Man impression, shooting a pretend web.

This complaints start at the beginning, which is oddly far from the start of the bridge, forcing riders to share the lane with impatient drivers for the first 200 feet.

The good news is there are some connections to the bridge from some existing bike lanes.

The bad, not enough. And not safe enough.

https://twitter.com/multimodalLA/status/1546160032344969222

https://twitter.com/multimodalLA/status/1546322536887005184

Then there’s the limited protected offered by the low curbs and chubby plastic bendy posts.

Which didn’t stand up to the very first vehicles on the very first day.

Top rendering from 6th Street Viaduct Twitter account.

………

Next up is the triumphant return of CicLAvia, which took over South LA’s Western Ave in the year’s first event.

CD8 Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson struck the right note in opening the day’s festivities.

Los Angeles mayoral candidate Karen Bass demonstrated she’s one us, as she rode Sunday’s CicLAvia along with her brother.

However, billionaire mall developer Rick Caruso, her competitor in the race, was apparently a no show, missing a golden opportunity to demonstrate a more human side and connect with thousands of LA voters.

Next up is a return of the popular Meet The Hollywoods CicLAvia through Hollywood and West Hollywood next month.

………

CLR Effect and Claremont Cyclist author Michael Wagner forwards a heartbreaking report about the installation of a ghost bike for Debbie Morgan-Alam, who was killed late last month by an alleged DUI driver.

Wagner reports her alleged 19-year old killer was driving with three times the legal alcohol limit, and with cannabis in her system.

Although the legal alcohol limit for underage drivers is zero.

Photos by Michael Wagner

Personally, I hate ghost bikes. I hope I never see another one.

But I will keep supporting them as long as people keep dying needlessly on our streets.

………

This is who we share the internet with.

And the answer is…

Thanks to How The West Was Saved for the heads-up.

………

The president of Slovakia is one of us, too.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1546166517103984641

………

Streets For All founder Michael Schneider visits New York, and discovers that outdoor dining and parking protected bike lanes can peacefully coexist.

https://twitter.com/schneider/status/1546259940704141313

………

Everyone knows you need an SUV to ferry the kids, right?

Right?

And note she’s riding uphill, too.

………

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

Portland police have rearrested a man who allegedly attacked a bike-riding man and his young daughter in a racist attack based on their Japanese ancestry, after he failed to appear in court.

A bicyclist learns the hard way to stay out of the door zone, in a horrifying crash that remarkably appeared to end without major injuries.

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

A Cleveland woman faces neglect charges after a pizza shop worker spotted her recklessly riding a bike, with her two-month old diaper-wearing twins in a milk crate held to the handlebars with just a bungee cord.

A Grand Rapids, Michigan man was arrested after weaving a Lime ebike in and out of freeway traffic with a BAC of .19, well over twice the legal alcohol limit.

An Ohio man was busted for shoplifting despite a failed attempt to make a getaway on his Huffy.

Police in New York are looking for a man who rode off on a bikeshare bike after stabbing another man to death on a park bench.

………

Local

He gets it. LA Times letters editor Paul Thornton says when it comes to the closure of Griffith Park Drive through Griffith Park, “Cyclists need this. Runners and walkers need this. Los Angeles needs this. And frankly, I need this.”

The Sierra Club calls the Healthy Streets LA ballot proposal “a big step closer to safer LA streets.”

Shia LaBeouf is still one of us, taking his tattooed thighs for a ride through Pasadena.

 

State 

La Jolla’s Fay Ave bike path will get year-round volunteer cleanup efforts, along with re-naturalization with native plants.

San Diego police were quick to blame the victim when a woman was seriously injured after she allegedly swerved her bike into the traffic lane, and collided with a car driven by a 79-year old woman. Although it sounds a lot more like a likely violation of the three-foot passing law to me.

He gets it. A San Diego letter writer says bikeways are an important part of the city’s future, with separated bike lanes proven to reduce bike crashes by 80%.

A 16-year old Palo Alto girl was the victim of a strong-arm robbery when a man pushed her off her bike, and stole her cellphone and debit card.

San Francisco plans to add another 50 miles of bike lanes in an effort to tame some of the city’s most dangerous streets.

 

National

A writer for the Kansas City Star shares the lessons learned riding the 512-mile Bike Across Kansas.

A Wisconsin man was bike-jacked at gunpoint, a crime that’s far more common in other countries, such as South Africa.

This is who we share the road with. After a Chicago man exchanged words with a driver who nearly ran him down as he crossed the street, the woman’s passenger pulled out a gun and shot at him repeatedly; fortunately, the passenger’s aim sucked. These days you almost have to assume there’s a gun in any car. And don’t count on a gunman’s bad aim to save your ass. 

President Joe Biden was back in the saddle this weekend, albeit sans toe clips, a month after he fell off his bike when he got his foot caught in one.

 

International

Rising gas prices in the UK are leading to surging cargo bike sales.

A bike-riding British mail carrier was run down by one of his own colleagues, who drove another 15 miles before telling police he “may have hit something.”

A UK military veteran shares his thoughts on riding across the country despite losing a leg in Afghanistan.

The brutal invasion of Ukraine didn’t appear to put a damper on Moscow’s summer bicycle parade, with thousands of riders taking part.

Add this one to your bike bucket list. A new 25-mile bike path leads past four major temples in the ancient Madras, in eastern India.

Speaking of India, bike-born knife sharpeners are slowly fading away in Rawalpindi.

Severe gas shortages in Sri Lanka mean residents are leaving their cars in the garage, and taking to their bikes.

The Global Times says “fancy” foreign bikes costing up to $15,000 — from makers like Specialized, Trek and Brompton — are the latest must-have fad for China’s Gen Z.

Peddle ice cream while you peddle your new $1,500 solar-powered ebike from China’s Alibaba — or get two for just $200 more.

 

Competitive Cycling

Who had Bob Jungels 40-mile solo breakaway win on their Tour de France bingo card for Sunday’s ninth stage? The Luxembourger made a triumphant comeback after battling arterial endofibrosis for the past two years.

The formidable Ineos Grenadiers team cracked a little on Sunday when Colombian Dani Martínez did the same, leaving three team members remaining in the Tour’s top ten.

Tadej Pogačar leads the pack by more than a minute over 22-year old Jonas Vingegaard, with American Nielson Powless a surprising ninth at a minute and 55 seconds behind the leader.

Cycling Weekly complains about pro cycling’s failure to mention the war in Ukraine, raging just over a thousand miles from the Tour de France; Russian oligarch Igor Makarov remains on UCI’s management committee, despite heavy sanctions and pressure to remove him.

Fans crowding the race course claimed another casualty last week, when Italy’s Daniel Oss was forced to withdraw from the Tour with a broken neck after clipping one fan, then slamming into another who was leaning out onto the roadway; fortunately, he’s expected to make a full recovery.

The breakout star of this year’s Tour de France is French sprinter Hugo Hofstetter’s black and tan Rottweiler.

Olympic road champ Annemiek van Vleuten won her third Giro Donne title, after surviving a Friday fall.

Hope for all us diabetics, as Canada’s Sébastien Sasseville overcame type 1 to finish 12th in the recent Race Across America, aka RAAM, riding over 3,000 miles in 11 days, 22 hours and 25 minutes.

Cycling Utah offers a brief recap of Saturday’s Crusher in the Tushar gravel race; Keegan Swenson and Haley Smith topped 800 riders from 37 states and eight countries to win the men’s and women’s titles, respectively; Swenson won his in a decisive solo breakaway.

 

Finally…

If you’re planning to steal a police bike, maybe try not to do it right in front of them. That feeling when you get chased on your bike by a crazed fan.

And every bike rider knows how good it feels to get a new bicycle.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Road-raging deputy brake checks group ride, LA Times calls for Griffith Park car bans, and advocates pan bridge bike lanes

A road-raging Houston deputy constable thought people in a group ride were riding dangerously.

So he apparently decided to make it exponentially less safe.

Makes sense.

The bike riders are now calling for the deputy to be fired for actions that included repeatedly brake-checking the group, which caused at least one rider to crash into his car.

According to Houston’s KHOU-11,

“You see him brake-check people,” one cyclist said. “You see him get out, taunt, intimidate people. You see him drive in oncoming traffic in the oncoming direction. You see him go over across two or three lanes of traffic in the right lane where bikers, by transportation code, are legally supposed to be and legally allowed to be.”

Several angry cyclists then rode past the patrol car, yelling at the deputy and asking for his badge number.

Another cyclist who posted a different video told KHOU 11 he’s pro-law enforcement but believes the deputy’s actions went too far.

“This deputy was definitely out of control,” that man said.

The bike riders say they never received a lawful command or the deputy’s identification, despite numerous requests for his badge number. And not surprising in the current environment, They’ve received a number of threats since posting the video online.

Meanwhile, the local constable — sort of like a sheriff, but with less authority and responsibility — took it upon himself to blame both sides.

Even though only one had threatened anyone’s safety.

Precinct 1 Constable Alan Rosen said the internal affairs department is conducting an investigation, but he believes there’s fault on both sides.

“After viewing the deputy’s dashcam video, which is now under investigation, it appears both parties, the deputy and cyclists on scene, were not conducting themselves in a safe manner,” Rosen said in a statement. “The cyclists were dangerously impacting other citizens, riding into oncoming traffic lanes and were taking over an entire intersection interrupting traffic.”

Sure, let’s go with that.

Never mind that the deputy appears to have committed a number of possible felony violations, starting with that brake-check, which could and should be charged as assault with a deadly weapon.

But probably won’t be. Because, you know, Texas.

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up. Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

………

They get it.

The LA Times notes that Los Angeles is finally catching up to other major cities in closing some streets to cars — okay, one — while musing whether that marks the start of a road revolution.

LA’s paper of record also calls for closing more Griffith Park roadways to motor vehicles.

The park’s roads are currently designed for the movement of cars, not the safety and enjoyment of cyclists, walkers and equestrians. Drivers treat Griffith Park Drive and Crystal Springs Drive as shortcuts to avoid traffic on Interstate 5 and the 134 Freeway. The speed limit on park roads is 25 mph, but it’s routinely ignored by motorists. The routes aren’t safe for pedestrians or cyclists. Crosswalks and bike lane stripes are faded. Key roads are missing sidewalks for pedestrians and barriers separating cyclists from cars.

It’s no wonder Griffith Park mostly attracts only “strong and fearless” bicyclists, according to a consultant’s report. Councilmember Nithya Raman, who represents the area, said she wants the roads redesigned so families and kids feel comfortable riding their bikes in the park.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog offers a lengthy Twitter thread on how to make the park safer and more convenient for people on bicycles.

………

Renderings of the Class IV protected bike lanes on the new $600 million 6th Street Viaduct, scheduled to open this weekend, haven’t exactly been winning rave reviews online.

Like this, for instance.

………

LADOT announced a new bollard-protected bike lane on Grand Ave in South LA.

https://twitter.com/LADOTlivable/status/1544808420427063297

………

Active SGV lists upcoming rides on San Gabriel Valley greenways, starting tomorrow with Glendora and San Dimas.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1545110738594775041

………

Yes, recent bike convert and state Senator Anthony Portantino really is one of us now.

………

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

No bias here. Miami shop owners say new bike lanes that replaced curbside parking are killing their businesses, insisting their customers can’t afford to pay for parking. They don’t have money to park, yet somehow, still have money to spend at their stores. Sure, that makes sense.

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

Sadly, Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar and his cyclist brother Roberto never got to live out their dream of fielding a winning team at the Tour de France.

………

Local

Los Angeles’ StreetsLA staff has completed the first inspection of pavement quality for the city’s entire 1,100-mile bike lane network. However, despite all the happy talk, there’s no mention that the inspection was inspired by the $6.5 million settlement for a bike rider injured by a Sherman Oaks pothole — vastly more than the $4 million the city spent fixing broken bike lane pavement last year.

Seriously? Ryan Seacrest’s radio co-host Sisanie questions whether you could manage to go carfree at Sunday’s South LA CicLAvia. Because walking or biking the short three-mile route is just so, so hard, evidently.

Streetsblog’s SGV Connect talks with Eastside Bike Club founder and Stan’s Bike Shop owner Carlos Morales, one of the nicest and most inspiring people you’ll ever meet; you can read a transcript here if you prefer that to listening.

The Malibu Times complains about Caltrans’ “chaotically staged” virtual meeting to present plans for bike lanes on the western section of PCH through the coastal city, while noting the lack of answers about the project.

 

State 

You can now buy California-based Aventon bikes at your local Best Buy.

A 25-year old Placer County man will spend the next 13 years behind bars for attacking and robbing a 69-year old man on a bicycle.

 

National

The Federal Highway Administration, aka FHWA, is proposing a new rule to measure and track transportation greenhouse gas emissions.

Wired says e-scooters aren’t as green as you think, either.

Several states are siphoning federal highway safety funds, despite the dramatic increase in traffic deaths; US regulations allow them the repurpose up to half the funding they receive.

Consumer Reports reviews the best bike locks, but won’t tell you without a subscription.

Salt Lake City is accused of violating its own Complete Streets requirement after rebuilding a street to the same incomplete format it was before.

A Joplin, Missouri bike rider was seriously injured when he or she was rear-ended by a sheriff’s deputy responding to a burglary call, who evidently somehow couldn’t see someone on a bicycle directly in front of the car. Yet they can’t even be bothered to recognize that the victim was a person, rather than a mere “subject.”

Proposed legislation in New York would require drunk drivers to pay child support for up to 18 years if they kill a custodial parent in a DUI crash.

A New York State mountain biker rides a 27-mile loop, hoping to find one the finest mountain-bike rides in the Adirondacks, but leaves complaining about poor maintenance and fallen trees.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. A pickup driver isn’t facing any charges for killing an 11-year old boy in the Hamptons, despite backing into the victim’s bike while leaving a worksite. Seriously, if you can’t see what’s behind you, don’t effing back up.

 

International

Cycling Weekly looks at ten standout handmade bikes from Enve Composites Bike Builder Round-Up, calling them rideable art.

An Irish man walked with a gentle caress on the wrist for the death of a 63-year old bike rider, after the man’s Yorkie escaped and ran out into the roadway; he was fined the equivalent of just $304 for letting the dog run loose, and a total of $329 for not licensing his three dogs. But not a dime for killing someone. Let’s at least hope the victim’s family has a damn good lawyer.

France is rolling out a new combination bike and pedestrian traffic signal for use when a bike lane runs next to a pedestrian path.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers his observations from a recent family vacation to Barcelona, calling it the “most walkable, most transit-oriented, and most bikeable place” he’s ever been. And yes, I’m only a lot jealous.

 

Competitive Cycling

Rouleur looks forward to today’s stage of the Tour de France, the year’s first mountain finish. On gravel, no less.

Slovenian Tadej Pogačar won Thursday’s sixth stage to become the third yellow jersey holder at this year’s Tour; Bicycling asks the pertinent question of who the hell is the new Slovenian race leader. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you

American TdF rookie Quinn Simmons made a good impression on Thursday’s stage, following the wheels of Wout Van Aert and Jakob Fuglsang on a lengthy breakaway before getting reeled in by the peloton as Van Aert sped off.

Italy’s Alberto Bettiol apologized to teammates Neilson Powless and Magnus Cort, after an ill-advised attack on the cobbles during Wednesday’s fifth stage may have helped keep the American out of the yellow jersey, trailing then leader Tadej Pogačar by just 13 seconds.

Juliette Labous won Thursday’s stage of Italy’s Giro Donne, as Dutch cyclist Annemiek van Vleuten added to her overall lead. Meanwhile, Dutch great Marianne Vos is withdrawing from the Giro Donne after her second stage win on Wednesday to focus on “other team goals,” most likely the new Tour de France Femmes.

Damn good question. VeloNews examines the hypocrisy in cycling, questioning why some dopers are forgiven while others are shunned.

Comfy bikes and Tour de France teams aren’t concepts that usually go together.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you set a new record for the oldest person to cross the US by bike. Once again, if you’re riding your bike with meth stuffed in your sock, put a damn light on it. The bike, that is, not the sock.

And yes, the late, great James Caan was one of us.

At least on the silver screen.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1545113994737979392

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Fake cop busted for kidnapping bike-riding boy, tech turns cars into “candy store of distraction,” and LAFD says wear a helmet

There was a frightening crime in Panorama City Wednesday morning, when a fake cop allegedly kidnapped a 13-year old boy after crashing into his bike.

The victim, who wasn’t publicly identified, was riding his bike near Van Nuys Boulevard and Tupper Street when he was struck by a pickup driven by 38-year old Ottoniel Mendoza.

Mendoza got out of his truck, identified himself as a cop while flashing a badge, and ordered the boy to get into his truck. He was arrested nearby after a witness called police and followed Mendoza as he drove away.

He was booked on suspicion of kidnapping; other counts likely to be added later after the DA reviews the case.

His victim was taken to a hospital with minor injuries from the crash, lucky to escape safe and unharmed.

A passenger in the truck was released without charges.

Thanks to Tony Toretto for the heads-up.

………

The LA Times says increasing technology is turning modern cars into a “candy store of distraction,” comparing the problem to overwhelmed military helicopter pilots in the 1980s.

The paper also notes that 70% of drivers admit to using their cellphones behind the wheel, a figure that rises to 86% for people who use their cars for work.

Just in case you’re wondering why they don’t seem to see you.

………

The Los Angeles Fire Department wants you to wear a helmet and ride safely if you’re going to Sunday’s South LA CicLAvia.

https://twitter.com/LAFDtalk/status/1544854637022306305

………

Streetsblog LA is hosting their annual summer fund drive, hoping to raise $15,000 over the next two months.

And yes, I plan to give what little I can to support their vital work reporting on LA transportation issues.

The website also announced the August 3rd date for their first in-person Streetsie Awards party in three years, honoring L.A. County Supervisor Holly Mitchell.

………

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

There’s a special place in hell for the Connecticut man who pushed an 11-year old biracial boy off his bicycle; advocates are calling for him to be charged with a hate crime. 

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

Detroit police are looking for a suspect who seriously injured a 51-year old man in a bike-by shooting.

Police in New York are looking for a pair of teenage ebike riders who got into a fistfight with another man, before pulling guns and firing at him on the sidewalk in broad daylight.

………

Local

Los Angeles is bringing safety improvements to a 4.5-mile section of Western Ave between Martin Luther King Jr. and Century boulevards in South LA. Although the project appears to include sharrows instead of bike lanes, which have been shown to be literally worse than nothing

LAist offers more information on the coming Rail to Rail Active Transportation Project through South LA and Inglewood, tentatively scheduled to open in two years.

Long Beach wants to improve community policing by putting more cops on bikes and walking beats.

Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot is one us. Or at least knows the value of posing with a bicycle on the beach.

 

State 

Speaking of a special place in hell, someone — presumably a mountain biker — cut several branches and bushes overhanging a trail in the Del Mar Mesa Preserve, apparently in an effort to increase speed while reducing the trail’s difficulty.

Too many memorials line the streets of San Diego’s Barrio Logan neighborhood, where residents and business owners have complained for years about the lack of traffic safety for pedestrians and cyclists; three people have been killed already this year, including last month’s death of a 63-year old ebike rider.

Mountain Bike Action recommends the off-road, all-levels Sapwi Bike Park and Sapwi Flow Trail Project in Thousand Oaks, a joint project of the Concerned Off-Road Bicyclists Association (CORBA) and Conejo Recreation and Park District.

 

National

Good idea. A bicycle insurance company is now offering nationwide coverage for damage to your bike, as well as optional theft coverage.

A new study says it doesn’t matter whether you ride your bike midweek or on weekends, as long as you ride.

They get it. A newspaper in Bend, Oregon says prioritizing people over cars won’t happen overnight, but it’s worth the effort, as the city fails to live up to its bike-friendly reputation.

Ebikes are now welcome wherever bicycles are allowed in Arizona’s Grand Canyon National Park.

Five of the best social bike rides for your next trip to Denver.

Drivers in Austin, Texas can’t seem to avoid a new curb-protected bike lane, with a local resident reporting at least one blown tire there every day; city officials say it’s needed on a section of roadway where the previous painted bike lane failed to prevent several traffic deaths and serious injuries.

Seriously? A Minnesota teenager is dead because 72-year old driver says he lost control of his control of his pickup when he sneezed, and slammed into the boy’s bike after going off the road at 55 mph; he tested under the legal alcohol limit, despite smelling of booze and showing signs of impairment.

Parking won out over a planned bike lane in Louisville, Kentucky, after residents complained and city officials suddenly discovered the street wasn’t wide enough for them.

Speaking of Louisville, a woman is calling for accountability after a hit-and-run driver left a popular bike advocate lying critically injured in the roadway. Maybe if the city prioritized people over parking, things like that might be a little less likely.

A New York website considers how ebikes can help the city meet its climate goals.

Good question. A DC website asks why we treat traffic safety as if it’s less important than transit safety.

 

International

British Columbia bike and safety advocates are calling for mandatory side bars on large trucks, after a frightening crash where a bike rider was right hooked by a driver turning right on a red light; the crash came just one week after another rider was killed in a similar crash. Banning right on red would help, too.

It looks like Britain can kiss pro-bike, pro-Brexit Prime Minister Boris Johnson goodbye, after one too many scandals.

Bike Radar ogles Danish city bikes while in in the country for the first stages of the Tour de France.

A Pakistani court has sentenced a Christian bike mechanic to death for blasphemy, in a dispute that began when Muslim customer demanded a discount after getting his bike fixed.

A new Honda ebike combines a ped-assist bike with a throttle-controlled, sit-down scooter.

A New Zealand op-ed says Vision Zero should account for the premature deaths caused by car pollution, as well as from traffic violence.

 

Competitive Cycling

Aussie Simon Clarke claimed his first Tour de France stage victory in a photo finish over Dutch cyclist Taco van der Hoorn in Wednesday’s cobbled sixth stage, while Wout Van Aert held on to the yellow jersey by a slim 13-second margin.

Bicycling asks if Neilson Powless is America’s sleeper Tour de France threat, after his solo breakaway was caught in the final kilometer; if he could have held on, he would have started today’s stage in the yellow jersey. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you

Slovenia’s Primož Roglič lost two minutes to the race leaders after a crash forced him to borrow a spectator’s chair to pop his dislocated shoulder back in place.

Roglič’s Jumbo-Visma teammate Jonas Vingegaard had to make up time after getting dropped by the peloton following a disastrous series of bike changes, as he struggled to find one he could actually ride.

https://twitter.com/flobikes/status/1544728920024563713?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1544728920024563713%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fcyclingmagazine.ca%2Fsections%2Fnews%2Fjumbo-vismas-bike-change-was-the-most-hectic-near-disaster-ever%2F

 

Finally…

Use a little magnetic attraction to keep your skirt down on a bike. If you’re carrying drug paraphernalia and stolen credit cards on your bike, put a damn light on it, already.

And forget hi-viz. Apparently even riding naked on a tandem isn’t enough to be seen by drivers.

Or one driver, anyway.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

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