Tag Archive for 626 Golden Streets

New Flax bike book, Metro cuts open streets funding, and nation’s deadliest city for pedestrians rates 8th for walkability

Stop what you’re doing and sign this petition demanding a public meeting with LA Mayor Karen Bass to hear the dangers we face just walking and biking on the mean streets of Los Angeles.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can.

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LA bike advocate and former Bicycling Editor in Chief Peter Flax has a new book coming out on March 19th titled Live To Ride, which is available for preorder now.

Meanwhile, Bicycling’s Gabe’s Bike Shop talks with Flax about his book, and digs through his Twitter/X account to get into his head.

As usual, read and/or listen to it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

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Metro inexplicably followed through on a staff recommendation to cut open streets funding last week.

The LA County transportation agency reduced spending on already-approved projects up to 20%, sending organizers scrambling to secure more funding, and putting events like CicLAvia, 626 Golden Streets and Beach Streets in jeopardy.

The agency also refused funding for projects planned for this December for Ventura Blvd, as well as Northridge, Wilmington, Long Beach, Hawthorne, Lincoln Heights and MacArthur Park.

The decision makes no sense at a time when reducing automobile traffic and getting people out of their cars is vital for the health of our transportation network, and our world.

And even though the $5.5 million approved for open streets funding over the next two years amounts to a lousy rounding error on Metro’s massive $9 billion annual budget.

They could have easily fully funded all the proposed events just by trimming one needless and environmentally harmful highway project.

Update: I received the following statement from Metro’s Jennifer Butler, disputing that funding had been cut, but rather, an increase in funding had been spread further, resulting in a reduction in funding for existing events.

On Jan. 25, 2024, the Metro Board approved the Open and Slow Streets Grant Program, which reflected an increase in annual funding from $4 to $5 million and included unspent funds from last year for a total of $5.5 million in fiscal year 2024. Metro has funded $20 million for Open Streets events since the program began, and with the recent Board action, this figure rises to just over $25 million cumulatively through 2025. 

The approved increased in annual funding, together with staff’s recommendation to partially fund (at 80%) the longstanding events that had received open streets funding for five or more events prior to this Cycle, allowed Metro to fund 16 Open Streets activities vs 13 previously.  

The mature events have access to (Part 3 such as TDA Article 3, bicycle and pedestrian funds) to complete the funding of their events, and new applicants now have the opportunity to hold their first event, giving more people in LA County a chance to experience safe walking, biking and rolling. This fulfills the program’s objective to provide seed funding for open streets events and enables more people to experience active transportation and public transportation for the first time. 

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Condé Nast Traveler caused an uproar after rating Los Angeles the eighth most walkable city in the US — despite also being the nation’s deadliest city for pedestrians.

Which one would think would kind of have an impact on walkability.

But apparently not.

Meanwhil, Redfin rates the ten most bikeable cities in California, none of which are Los Angeles.

Although Santa Monica ranks sixth.

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NBA star Klay Thompson is one of us, as the Golden State Warriors guard showed up on an ebike for a recent game with the Los Angeles Lakers.

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It’s now 39 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 30 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law, and counting.

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

A 47-year old Oregon man faces a host charges after allegedly intentionally ramming a bike rider with his car, then fleeing the scene; no word on the extent of the victim’s injuries.

No bias here. A populist Irish politician who frequently complains about the “nanny state” apparently has no problem acting like one if it means requiring hi-viz for people on bicycles.

The wife of an Australian man intentionally run down by the occupants of a stolen car says he should be able to walk again, but his spine will never be the same — and the jerks who did it were laughing as they drove away.

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

A Florida man was busted for biking under the influence for trying to ride his bike home while both high and drunk, as well as having no idea what time it was. And should be grateful the cop didn’t get him for littering, too.

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Local 

A Los Angeles bike rider was treated by paramedics after being struck by a driver fleeing from the LAPD.

ActiveSGV calls on LA County to fund the 5-city, 8-mile Eaton Wash Greenway running from Pasadena to El Monte.

 

State

Southern California will get a share of $1.2 billion in new funding from the California Transportation Commission, including over $53 million to improve safety on CA-2, better known as Santa Monica Blvd.

A new ghost bike was installed in San Diego’s Mission Valley to remember husband and father Matt Keenan, after his ghost bike was set on fire earlier this month; one man is in custody for the arson attack.

No bias here, either. The CHP was quick to absolve a semi driver of responsibility for driving off after hitting a Bakersfield bike rider, who suffered major injuries, saying “the truck driver most likely did not feel they hit someone.”

Sad news from San Jose, where a man riding a bicycle was killed when a driver somehow “made contact with him.” Which makes it sound like just a little bump, instead of a life-threatening crash.

Ten teens have now been charged with stabbing a 41-year old Santa Rosa man  multiple times to steal his bicycle earlier this month.

 

National

Outside says there’s no good reason to buy a carbon bike, because the only people who really need one get them for free.

The Tucson, Arizona driver who killed a woman participating in the city’s Bike Party, and caused life-changing injuries to two other people, will spend the next 17 years behind bars — even though the victim worked to reduce prison populations and sentences.

US Marshals smoked out alleged killer and former fugitive Kaitlin Armstrong from her Costa Rica hideout when she responded to an ad they posted looking for a yoga instructor; Armstrong is charged with murdering gravel champ Moriah “Mo” Wilson in Austin, Texas over a perceived love triangle with pro cyclist Colin Strickland. As rumored, she used plastic surgery to change her appearance.

Eight of New York’s 77 police precincts recorded zero traffic deaths last year, even as the city suffered its second-worst year on record for bicycling fatalities.

New York magazine rates the best bike helmets, saying there’s one for every head.

That’s more like it. A Florida man was sentenced to a dozen years behind bars, followed by eleven years probation, for killing a bike-riding man while driving drunk and doing 109 mph in a 35 mph zone.

 

International

How to build your very own aluminum framed superbike.

A 70-year old English minister is sacrificing his free time to fix “unsolvable” bike repair problems.

A new British study shows cargo bikes are faster in urban areas than delivery trucks or vans, without the harmful climate effects of motor vehicles.

One of the UK’s most wanted criminals will spend the next 19 years behind bars after he was busted by Spanish police trying to make his escape by ebike after two years on the run.

Indian film star Bobby Deal killed four years by running and riding his bike while waiting for his movie debut to finally be released.

A Karachi, Pakistan bikeathon was held to reclaim public spaces for women on bicycles, who are subject to “evil” street harassment.

A group of British Muslims are biking nearly 350 miles between Makkah and Madinah, following the route of the Prophet Muhammad, to protest the war in Gaza.

Hats off to Rwandan ebike-startup Ampersand for securing nearly $20 million in debt and equity funding to get off the ground.

Celebrity Philippine beauty doctor Vicki Bello is one of us, after her equally celeb physician husband gave her a new Fendi ebike for her 68th birthday.

 

Competitive Cycling

Makes sense to me. Cycling Weekly says the greatest rider of all time is always the one who inspired you in your youth. Which explains why I always nominate The Cannibal; however, anyone who grew up idolizing a certain one-balled Texan may be screwed.

A 27-year old British Columbia cyclist was permanently banned from participating as a coach, athlete, volunteer or spectator at any Canadian cycling event after violating Cycling Canada’s code of conduct in some undisclosed way.

French pro Rudy Molard has been unable to fly home after suffering a concussion hitting the pavement in the third stage of the Tour Down Under, leaving him with no memory of the crash. I can relate; I still have no idea what happened in the infamous beachfront bee incident more than 16 years later.

 

Finally…

If you think today’s ebike designs are strange, consider from whence they sprang. We may have to deal with piggish LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about actual wild hogs roaming our bike paths.

And that feeling when you go swimming with your bicycle in an icy lake while streaming live on Twitch.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

LA 3rd worst for bike deaths as percentage of bike commuters, and Metro considers slashing open streets budget

Stop what you’re doing and sign this petition demanding a public meeting with LA Mayor Karen Bass to hear the dangers we face just walking and biking on the mean streets of Los Angeles.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can.

Photo by Darren Graves.

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Let’s start with today with yet another measure of how deadly streets are in the City of Angels, as Los Angeles ranks 3rd among large American cities in the number of bike riders killed as a proportion of bike commuters.

Although that measure fails to consider that many, if not most, LA victims may be riding for other reasons.

But still.

And it’s yet another good reason to sign the petition above, before that figure gets any higher.

Thanks to Dr. Michael Cahn, aka Velocipedus, for the head’s up.

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The Metro board is considering a staff recommendation to cut funding for open streets events, including CicLAvia, 626 Golden Streets and Beach Streets, just as they are expanding in frequency throughout LA County, and needed more than ever.

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The 46th Annual LA Chinatown Firecracker festival is set to take place on February 24th and 25th, marking one of the largest and oldest Lunar New Year celebrations in the US.

But it’s the bike rides taking place on Saturday the 24th that’s of most interest here.

This is how organizers describe them.

20/50-Mile LA Chinatown Firecracker Bike Ride Highlights 

Participants receive:

  • Commemorative short sleeve t-shirt
  • Goodie Bag
  • Finisher Medal
  • Post-Event Carbo Load Dish and 1 Beer (21+)
20-MILE FUN RIDE

CHINATOWN, LOS ANGELES RIVER PATH

The short route takes advantage of the recently renovated LA River Bike Trail that is protected from vehicular traffic. It also starts in Chinatown and enters the restored Los Angeles River that has been transformed into a sanctuary for a wide variety of birds and other wildlife. View the architectural bridges, cafes and even a bike shop that has sprouted up along the river. This is an easy and relaxed route that is perfect for beginners and intermediate riders. There are multiple restrooms along the route and a large staffed and stocked rest stop with a picnic area will be waiting for you at the halfway point.

Check out the route map here.

50 MILE HALF-CENTURY – NEW FOR 2024

EAST SIDE & SAN GABRIEL VALLEY NEIGHBORHOODS

We collected feedback from riders of past events and designed a better route with improved rest stops that are more cyclist friendly. The new route goes through Downtown LA, The LA River, Glendale, Eagle Rock, Pasadena, Altadena, San Marino, South Pasadena, El Sereno and Lincoln Heights. We start in historic Chinatown with a backdrop of City Hall, ride past Los Angeles State Historic Park, Autry Museum, LA Zoo, Travel Town, LA Equestrian Center, Bette Davis Park, Verdugo Mountains, JPL/NASA, Christmas Tree Lane, Eaton Canyon and much more. This is a fantastic way to experience the sights, smells and diversity of Los Angeles County on two wheels with fellow cyclists, route signage, SAG support and 2 stocked/staffed rest stops. This is a mix of bike paths, bike lanes and urban streets. *2,200 ft climb

Check out the route map here.

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It’s now 34 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 30 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law, and counting.

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

No bias here. Rose City driver activist group Keep Pasadena Moving criticizes efforts to urge the city to use NACTO’s All Ages & Abilities design standards for upcoming greenways, describing the respected National Association of City Transportation Officials as a New York special interest group.

Two men riding bikes were seriously injured when they were run down by what appears to be the same driver in stolen car in Melbourne, Australia. No word on whether the attacks were deliberate, but it sounds a lot like similar attacks in Las Vegas and Huntington Beach, which may have stemmed from a TikTok challenge.

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

A 77-year old San Leandro, California woman was killed when she was struck by a 12-year old boy riding a bicycle as she stepped out of a store earlier this month; the boy put his foot down, but was unable to stop in time.

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Local 

Velo says it might not be a good idea to give Lyft an exclusive contract to operate the Metro Bike bikeshare system for the next 11 years, after the troubled bikeshare operator put itself up for sale; the proposal has been delayed after objections from LA bikeshare users and union members.

A February 4th bike ride will roll through the streets of Alhambra to call for a safe bike network in the city, as it prepares to roll out a new bike and pedestrian plan.

 

State

Calbike announced this year’s California Bicycle Summit will be held at the Wyndham San Diego Bayside on April 18-19.

A Bakersfield judge has postponed the preliminary hearing of a man charged with murder in the alleged drunken hit-and-run that killed a 30-year old woman riding a bike last year; 25-year old Caleb Nathaniel Rodriguez was already driving on a suspended license following a previous DUI conviction.

Nice Guy. The 24-year old driver who escaped charges for killing former NFL coach Greg Knapp as he rode his bike in San Ramon two years ago was arrested for assaulting his own father over the weekend.

Streetsblog examines new raised bike lanes on Oakland’s Frutivale Ave.

A 70-year old Modesto woman is lucky she wasn’t one of the 23 people killed walking or riding bicycles in Stanislaus County last year, after surviving a crash by a pickup driver.

Sad news from Stockton, where a 14-year old boy was killed by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bicycle.

 

National

The co-founder of the All Bodies on Bikes movement explains the techniques she used to make peace with hills, despite being a fat bicyclist. Her description, not mine. 

Here’s your chance to work in the bicycle industry, as Pink Bike lists 13 jobs that are open right now.

Thrillist says you’ll need a guide, a bicycle and cash to find the best tacos in Tucson, Arizona.

A Colorado bike law attorney examines plans for an offroad bike path replacing the deadly section of roadway between Boulder and Longmont where 17-year old US junior ‘cross champ Magnus White was killed last year.

A local TV station says Baltimore is slowly becoming safer for people walking and on bicycles.

A Miami bike rider wants to know whatever happened to Critical Mass. He’s welcome to come to Los Angeles this Friday, and the last Friday of every month to find out.

 

International

The European Cyclists Federation says markings on pavement are more than just paint, as bicycling infrastructure plays “an essential role in safer cycling by mitigating risks, enhancing visibility and overall enforcing a sense of safety for cyclists.” Although that last part can be problematic, considering it is just paint.

Velo considers the world’s five best bicycling hotels for your next two-wheeled vacation.

Road.cc rates the year’s ten best road bikes.

Oasis singer and songwriter Noel Gallagher is one of us, as he lost the equivalent of $25 million in his divorce settlement, but at least he got to keep his bicycle.

A London family was torn apart when a young mother was the victim of a speeding hit-and-run driver doing over twice the posted speed limit as she rode her bike home from work.

A Scottish columnist says it’s time for Edinburgh to take bicycle safety seriously.

Talk about the road trip from hell. A man attempting to ride from Scotland to India was killed when he fell off a cliff after eating a poisonous wild mushroom in Italy, following the theft of his bicycle and money in a robbery while riding through France.

Britain’s Brompton is now offering a 12-speed foldie.

Momentum says the Dutch are inspiring the world once again with their fancy solar bike paths.

 

Competitive Cycling

Pez Cycling News examines the health, or lack thereof, of pro cycling in North America.

Popular American pro Joe Dombrowski calls it a career after 11 years on the WorldTour.

The organizers of Belgium’s E3 Saxo Classic apologized for posting a cartoon widely seen as homophobic, which showed Wout van Aert finishing the the Cyclocross World Cup in Spain after losing his bike seat, with the caption “Wout van Aert crosses the finish line without a saddle. LGBTQ community blazing.”

 

Finally…

Your next car could be a “terrifying three-wheeled EV” with bike pedals. If you’re riding salmon, without lights or reflectors, with an active warrant and carrying meth on your bike, maybe leave the folding table on your handlebars at home.

And that feeling when Tadej drops you like freshman English.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Morning Links: Successful 626 Golden Streets, Smokey Bear visits AToC, and NIMBY traffic safety denier Bingo

We’re back with a nice, long update after yesterday’s unexcused absence.

So grab some coffee and buckle in.

It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Today’s photo is from the Amgen Tour of California women’s final at the Rose Bowl, courtesy of David Drexler. See below for more.

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The LA News Group’s Steve Scauzillo offers a recap and photos from Sunday’s 626 Golden Streets: Mission to Mission open streets event in South Pasadena, Alhambra and San Gabriel.

Meanwhile, an Alhambra paper says crowds flocked to the event once the rain ended.

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As long as we’re on the subject of open streets, CicLAvia has released the map for the Mid City Meets Pico Union event at the end of next month.

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David Drexler forwards some photos from the women’s Amgen Tour of California final on Saturday. Unfortunately, we don’t have names to go with the photos, but its amazing how close fans can get to the riders.

Drexler also took part in the Rose Pedal Ride after the race, when the Rose Bowl course was open to bicyclists while remaining closed to drivers.

And nearly had the entire thing to himself.

This is how he describes it.

What if you threw a CicLAvia and No One Came?
It was called the Rose Pedal — where was everyone??
After the Amgen from 2 Pm to 8 Pm there was a ciclovia — all the roads were closed to car traffic around the Rose Bowl, but it was me and less than 10 other cyclists. Sometimes I rode half way around the Bowl with no one in back or in front of me, no cars. It was weird.
I almost think that there would have been more people out there if it was not for Amgen keeping the regulars away due to car restrictions.
I had this vision of 1000’s of people cycling around he Rose Bowl like the LA CicLAvia’s.
Lot’s of people came on bikes to Amgen, but when it ended — most left?

And he posed for photos with a couple of celebs, one of whom is former US Postal Service Team rider and current broadcaster Christian Vande Velde.

I’m told the other one is pretty famous, too.

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Bike journalist Peter Flax plays Bingo with LA’s favorite traffic safety deniers. Take this one to your next contentious traffic safety meeting.

Then again, aren’t they all these days?

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Apparently, those new protected bike lanes we were promised as a condition of granting permits to build the towering Wilshire Grand aren’t exactly what we got.

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Evidently, it’s even worse in San Francisco, where a bike rider films himself riding, or trying to ride, through one of the city’s car-choked bike lanes.

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The next time you need a babysitter, maybe don’t call Danny Macaskill.

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

Maryland police are looking for a road raging driver who yelled obscenities at a group of bike riders, then intentionally swerved into three riders, forcing one woman into a ditch.

Meanwhile, Maryland police seem more concerned with whether the driver violated the three foot passing law. One of the victims says he may give up bicycling after 20 years, while his friend and fellow rider remains in the hospital, fighting for her life.

And evidently the motoring world has enlisted wildlife on their side. A kamikaze deer ran out into the road and smashed into a woman’s bicycle during an upstate New York fondo.

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Local

LA Bike Dad offers a status update on all the current bike projects in the City of Los Angeles. Meanwhile, LADOT provides update on work along the LA River bike path, including storm damage near the Riverside bridge that may force an additional closure. Thanks to Matt Stewart for the heads-up.

This is the cost of traffic violence. Actress Rebecca Gayheart says she didn’t want to live after killing a nine-year old boy as she was driving in Los Angeles. On the other hand, the kid probably did want to live. And her comment of “Why me? Why Jorge?” seems to prioritize the victims of this crash the wrong way. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up. 

The Eastsider picks up the story of CD4 Councilmember David Ryu’s unexpected support for retaining, and improving, the road diet and bike lanes on Rowena Ave. It’s so cute that they pretend there’s actually a democratic process on the city council, when whatever a councilmember decides for his or her district goes.

CiclaValley enjoys his best bike weekend ever, witnessing the Mt. Baldy stage of the Amgen Tour of California, and taking in a vintage BMX show. On the other hand, my best bike weekend is all of them.

Malibu sheriff’s deputies will be conducting a bike and pedestrian safety enforcement crackdown today. As usual, that means riding to the letter of the law while in the city. And hoping deputies don’t fall back into their bad habit of ticketing riders for nonexistent requirements to ride single file and hug the door zone.

 

State

California’s proposed Complete Streets bill moved forward in the state legislature, while a bill that would have re-allocated active transportation funds died in committee.

Meanwhile, the state assembly approved a bill to regulate e-scooters and dockless bikeshare, requiring companies to get permits from cities and agree to local rules on how to run things; it now goes to the senate for consideration.

Olympic freestyle skiing silver medalist Gus Kenworthy says he’s participating in next month’s AIDS/LifeCycle ride to remind people that HIV rates are still climbing. He’s raised $153,000 to benefit the Los Angeles LGBT Center and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation; his goal is to raise $1 million.

The NRDC says California cities are rolling towards a more sustainable future, calling out San Jose, San Francisco and San Diego for their efforts to increase bicycling rates. Noticeably missing is Los Angeles, for good reason. Maybe CA cities have to be named afters saints instead of angels to actually do something about building better streets for bike riders.

An Irvine bike rider was the victim of a hit-and-run driver who slammed into him at the Irvine Blvd onramp to the 133, then fled north on the highway; no word on the victim’s condition. Thanks to Bill Sellin for the tip.

A writer for the Riverside Press-Enterprise says yes, bike riders are required to stop for stop signs and traffic lights, after a driver writes he did, and a bicyclist didn’t. However, there have been times when a driver called me out for running a stop sign I had already stopped at, so take it with a grain of salt.

Santa Barbara firefighters flew a critically injured mountain biker out by helicopter after the rider suffered what was described as a major spinal injury Monday afternoon. Let’s offer our prayers and best wishes for a fun and fast recovery.

Frank Lehnerz forwards another story about the Fresno crash where a Telsa’s onboard cameras proved the bike rider was at fault. Although judging by the headlines, the self-riding bicycle apparently didn’t have one.

Cupertino is widening a roadway to make room for protected bike lanes by moving the sidewalks, five years after a high school student was killed there riding his bike.

Traffic deaths are soaring in San Francisco, despite the city’s Vision Zero program.

A San Ramon letter writer somehow feels the need to remind us that bikes are inanimate objects and don’t have rights. And that mountain bikers have the same access to trails that anyone else does — on foot. Bikes may be inanimate objects, but the people who ride them do have rights.

Once again, a bike rider is the hero. A 20-year old woman is alive today after a passing bicyclist saw her drive off a 450-foot cliff and into the ocean in a remote area of Napa County.

 

National

A new NACTO report says fixing intersections — where nearly half of all urban bicycling deaths occur — could dramatically reduce crashes between bikes and cars.

Distracted driving is the new drunk driving, responsible for at least 3,166 traffic fatalities and countless close calls in 2017. And those are just the ones they know about; too many distracted driving crashes go undetected because police need a warrant to examine the driver’s phone, which requires probable cause. The law should be changed to require implied consent to search the driver’s phone after a crash, just like with blood alcohol levels in many states.

Hats off to the Bike League for teaming with the LA-area’s LACBC, T.R.U.S.T South LA and ActiveSGV, as well as the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, to produce a much-needed Spanish language version of their bike education manual.

Go ahead and take it with you. American Airlines becomes the latest US air carrier to drop extra fees for bicycles.

A Seattle writer says his bike commute was ruined by the city’s mayor, who canceled plans for a protected bike lane and replaced them with…nothing.

Running about a week behind, Bicycling catches up with the story about Walmart heirs opening their private Colorado ranch to mountain bikers. Speaking of Walmart, the massive retailer has cut prices on ebikes up to 40% for Bike Month.

A city councilmember in Colorado’s high country apparently thinks only fit, able bodied people should be allowed on 55-mile mountain bike path, voting to maintain a prohibition on ped-assist ebikes.

Longmont, Colorado, wisely considers lifting a requirement for sidewalk riders to get off their bikes and walk across a crosswalk.

A week after a six-year old Iowa boy was nearly killed in a collision while riding his bike, he started collecting bike helmets for kids without one, while Detroit physicians call a bike helmet the best way to protect kids from bike crashes, while noting that one in five kids don’t wear one. Actually, the best way to protect kids is to fight for safe streets and teach kids how to ride safely. Although helmets are still a good idea, since children are far more likely to fall on their own.

Apparently, it’s okay to actually kill someone on a bicycle and flee the scene in Texas. Just don’t try tampering with the evidence to cover it up. Thanks to Stephen Katz for the link.

A Detroit columnist says there’s a lot of synergy between high-end bikes and cars — and a lot of bike riders in the halls of car makers.

Ohio cops want to know where all the abandoned bikes keep coming from, when no one ever reports them stolen.

New York advocates are pushing for a bike and pedestrian path on the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge to help people on and off Staten Island without cars.

Bighearted Philly police fixed a young boy’s bike for him while he was at school, after he asked if he could leave it at the station because his rim was broken and he didn’t have a lock. And threw in a new lock while they were at it.

 

International

Great idea. A shipping container is converted into a portable bike parking locker that fits into a single parking space, capable of holding 24 bicycles.

A former Vancouver writer recalls the city’s bike-riding mayor, who convinced the city council to invest $25 million in remaking the streets to be safer for people on bicycles. One more reason LA needs to elect a bike-riding mayor in 2020.

A writer for the AP says Quebec endlessly beckons to bike riders, thanks to its beauty, history and an extensive network of bike trails.

A British lawyer wants bicycle training returned to the schools to cut injuries among children now, and throughout their lives.

I think we’ve been insulted. A Scottish op-ed says the system that kept Edinburgh from becoming a second-rate Los Angeles is broken, while calling for a greater emphasis on making the city safe for people on foot.

Over 40,000 people turned out for a Moscow semi-pro bike race and open streets event.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Weekly offers eight takeaways from last week’s Amgen Tour of California; VeloNews offers their takes, as well.

Cycling Tips’ Neal Rogers wants to introduce you to AToC champ Tadej Pogacar, calling him a future World Tour winner. Meanwhile, Pogacar set a new power record for the Mt. Baldy climb.

As for races that still have two weeks to go, Bicycling says Italy’s Valeria Conti may have the lead, but Slovenian Primož Roglič is in the best position to win the Giro. And yes, I had to copy his name to get it right.

Meanwhile, riders in the Giro say sure, it may be boring so far, but just wait.

 

Finally…

When you’re holding a fundraising bike ride, but you can’t tell anyone because it’s top secret. If you somehow feel an irresistible need to cremate a mouse, maybe try taking it out of the bike shop first.

And just…don’t.

Morning Links: Planning Comm says Westwood and Central are out; 626 Golden Streets postponed due to fires

Something stinks in City Hall.

As expected, the LA City Planning Commission gritted its teeth and went along with amendments to remove Westwood Blvd and Central Ave from the city’s Mobility Plan, clearly against their better judgment.

This, after rumors have circulated that councilmembers have made an agreement to throw bike riders on those streets under the bus. Perhaps literally.

I’m told the commissioners seemed to get the absurdity arguments that the best way to deal with the dangers along those corridors is to keep them dangerous, while making an attempt at social engineering by trying to shunt cyclist onto side streets where they clearly don’t want to go.

Which is the best way to ensure the failure of any bikeway.

And that, of course, leads to the same old circular thinking that says “see, we gave cyclists a bike lane and they didn’t use it, so clearly bike lanes don’t work and there’s no reason to build any more.”

Fortunately, the commissioners had the sense to make sure the removal of these lanes from the Mobility Plan doesn’t preclude studying, and perhaps building, them at a later date.

Like when Paul Koretz is out of office, which can’t happen soon enough.

Now the amendments go back to city hall, where they will be rubber stamped by the council, though we can hope at least a few councilmember have the courage to vote no.

Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman offers a great report from commission meeting.

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626 Golden StreetsDisappointing news, as the long-planned 626 Golden Streets open streets event scheduled for this Sunday has been postponed to due to smoke from a pair of fires in the San Gabriels, as well as the need to keep streets clear for firefighters.

The event, which would have been the longest ciclovía in the US, is expected be rescheduled for another date, although the logistics of working out a schedule with seven cities may make that challenging.

Sorry, Gabe.

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Let’s catch up with some other upcoming events.

Dine for a great cause today, when Burbank’s Bob’s Big Boy is the site of a fundraiser for Ride 2 Recovery; the restaurant will donate 20% of your meal ticket if you present the flyer you can pick up at the fundraiser booth outside. Fifteen-year old Michelle Morlock is raising $3,000 in donations to take part in next year’s ride, which helps veterans and active duty military personnel recover from emotional and physical wounds through bicycling. If you can’t make it, send ‘em a few bucks — or maybe a lot of bucks — at the address on the link.

This is the last Friday of the month, which means it’s time for LA Critical Mass, billed as the largest community bike ride in the US.

The LA Design Festival is teaming with Flying Pigeon LA for the eighth annual Design-n-Dim Sum bike ride this Sunday.

Helen’s Cycles is holding their Monthly Group Ride next Saturday, complete with an optional dirt section to kick off your 4th of July weekend.

Finish the Ride and Velo Studio are hosting the free community ride Tour de Griffith Park: An Introduction to Safe and Fun Riding on Sunday, July 3rd.

The Eastside Bike Club and Stan’s Bike Shop will host the second annual Tour de Tacos on Saturday, July 16th; the 25-mile family friendly ride promises at least four taco breaks along the way.

Former LACBC board member and Laemmle Theaters president Greg Laemmle invites you to ride with him on the third annual Tour de Laemmle on Sunday, July 24th. Greg will ride 125 miles to visit all nine Laemmle Theaters in a single day; you can register to join him for all or part of the ride.

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Yesterday we shared a photo of what was left after thieves pried open a U-lock securing a bicycle on my block; today, the other bike locked up on my block suffered the same fate.

This is all that was left.

SAMSUNG

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Taylor Phinney and Brent Bookwalter will represent the US for road cycling in the Olympic games, along with Megan Guarnier, Kristin Armstrong, Evelyn Stevens and Mara Abbott on the women’s side.

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Local

Metro votes to put a transportation sales tax extension on the November ballot, which would including bicycling and walking projects along with transit and highway work.

East Long Beach is dealing with the same increase in homelessness being seen throughout Southern California; residents are warned to secure their bikes to protect them from chop shops popping up in the area.

 

State

Menlo Park backpedals on plans to install bike lanes and make other needed safety improvements on El Camino Real.

Facebook’s new Frank Gehry-designed Menlo Park headquarters will also include a bicycle bridge designed in Gehry’s typically asymmetrical style. Although it looks more like it was designed by Picasso. Or maybe just someone who has never ridden a bicycle before.

The mayor of San Francisco was outraged by Wednesday’s twin hit-and-runs that left two cyclists dead; however, the SF Bicycle Coalition called his words hollow. Meanwhile, there was a third fatal bike crash in the Bay Area on Thursday morning, this time in Pleasanton.

 

National

Lifehacker offers a beginners guide to picking the perfect first bike.

A new reflective, neon-colored bike safety triangle is now raising funds on Kickstarter. It will probably make you more visible, but shouldn’t the onus be on drivers to look where they’re going, rather than on cyclists to light themselves up with virtual neon signs to get their damn attention?

Denver cyclists were welcomed to that city’s Bike to Work Day with a series of blocked bike lanes.

Even though Ohio allows bicyclists to ride two abreast, a Cincinnati suburb considers requiring them to ride single file.

 

International

Bike Radar offers tips on how to convert your existing ride into an ebike.

New bike path surfaces could help you bounce back from a fall. No, literally.

A British Columbia letter writer says a tourist guide is right that bicyclists will be “challenged and amazed” riding on a local highway — challenged to stay on it in the heavy traffic, and amazed they survived the experience.

A writer in the UK says she used to be one of the good ones back when everyone obeyed the law, but now that she doesn’t ride a bike anymore, people on bicycles have somehow morphed into a horrifying menace that threatens all those poor, bike-afflicted motorists and pedestrians.

Life is cheap in Ireland. A speeding, unlicensed driver gets a whole two and a half years in jail for the hit-and-run death of a cyclist he struck while attempting a four-wheel drift around a turn; the 27-year old driver, who never bothered to get a driver’s license, had been barred from driving three times in the previous five years, but still managed to stay behind the wheel until he killed someone.

China’s Xiaomi unveils a $450 folding ebike, which you can get there, but not here.

 

Finally…

Who needs a kite eating tree when Idaho has a bike eating one? Anyone can carry groceries home on a bike; try towing a sofa.

And make your getaway on the back of a bicycle after robbing a donut shop, and you could end up in the trash.

And then behind bars.