Tag Archive for Bike to Work Day

Happy Bike Day, Soto-Martinez backs off plans for Sunset Blvd Complete Street, & Caltrans considers SaMo Blvd bike lane

Happy Bike Day, formerly known as Bike to Work Day.

But since they’ve removed the “to Work” part, that means you don’t have to go to work today, and can spend the day riding your bike anywhere.

No?

Hence its other name, Bike Anywhere Day.

So whatever you’re doing and wherever you’re going, get out on your bike for at lest part of it, and just be glad you’re not stuck in a car somewhere.

Poor suckers.

Photo by Sabine van Erp from Pixabay

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In honor of Bike Day, LA Metro, Metrolink and other local transit systems are offering free transit and bikeshare rides today.

Metro is also offering free food and coffee at the NoHo Metro Station today, and the Downtown Santa Monica Expo Line tomorrow.

And Spectrum News 1 reminds us about Sunday’s Watts CicLAmini, the first of LA’s new compact open streets event designed for walking, instead of biking.

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Sunset4All sent out an urgent email yesterday urging action in support of the project.

The group, which is working to convert a section of deadly Sunset Blvd from its current car sewer configuration into a Complete Street that serves all road users, as well as the surrounding community, is concerned that new CD13 Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martinez may be backsliding on his campaign promises to get the vital project built.

I’m including there full email below, so you can voice your support.

The city is finalizing its list of projects for 2024 grant applications.  RIGHT NOW SUNSET4ALL IS NOT ON THAT LIST.  Furthermore, the city has failed  to meet with our community crowdfunded engineers for almost two years.  We need the Council office to take action NOW by instructing LADOT to submit a 2024 ATP grant application for Sunset4All, prioritize Sunset4All for all state and Federal grant opportunities, and ensure LADOT collaborates with the engineers our community paid for!

We urgently need you to remind Councilmember Soto-Martinez to keep his campaign commitment:

“Obviously there are much larger plans I am very passionate about supporting…I will literally throw my entire support behind. The one at the top of my head is Sunset4All…That’s the one that’s gonna get a lot of support my first four years certainly”
— Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martinez -December 22, 2022

There are two actions you can take:

1) Call Councilmember Soto-Martinez’s office and tell them to ensure a 2024 ATP grant application is submitted by LADOT on behalf of Sunset4All and to prioritize Sunset4All for all state and Federal grant opportunities.  
*Even if you’re not a constituent, the goal is to get his and his staff’s attention.

OFFICE PHONE NUMBER:  213-473-7013

2) Email Councilmember Soto-Martinez using our email template on the link below:

Send an email to CD13 to support grant funding

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Caltrans wants your input on plans to close the bike lane gap on Santa Monica Blvd in West LA, west of the 405 Freeway. (Clicking on the second image will make it easier to read.)

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US News and World Report — yes, it’s still a thing, evidently — is out with their ranking of the best places to live in the US for the 2023 and 2024, based on the country’s 150 largest cities.

Which is apparently why places like Long Beach and Santa Monica didn’t make the list.

While my bike-friendly Colorado hometown checks in at 23, you have to hit the Load More button twice before getting to any Southern California city, with sunny San Diego just making the top 100 at 93.

Santa Barbara, which sits outside most definitions of SoCal, comes in at 123.

Then you have to drop all the way down to 139 before you get to Los Angeles, below such garden spots as Brownsville, Texas; Anchorage, Alaska; and Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Apparently, our notorious car-centrism weighed heavily on our relatively pitiful ranking.

Just as surely as the positive platitudes are true, so are the negative ones. Notorious traffic jams and hours of delays are the norm for those who drive the many freeways covering Los Angeles. But all the mileage is not wasted. Those same freeways take residents between coastal beaches, rugged mountains, tree-lined forests and stark deserts all within an hour of the downtown area.

If only there was some sort of cheap, clean and efficient means of transportation that could get people out of their cars and defuse those notorious traffic jams.

But at least we beat out Bakersfield.

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Seriously, nothing says LA like an impatient driver forcing his way into a memorial bike ride.

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Nice to see plans to extend the Ballona Creek bike path getting local neighborhood support.

Although after more than three decades living in Los Angeles, I didn’t even know there is a Sepulveda Creek.

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Somehow, I don’t think this is how protected bike lane barriers are supposed to work.

David Drexler forwards a Nextdoor photo of a “truck operator having difficulty trying to decide how to park with the new (controversial) curbed bike lane on 17th street in Santa Monica.”

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

San Luis Obispo’s anti-bike curmudgeon is back with yet another screed calling on the city to end its “bike lane insanity.” Seriously, someone get this guy on a bike, already. Thanks to Jeff Mellstrom for the link.

A local British counselor complains that building bike and walking paths on the grounds of a 12th century abbey will restrict the activities of dog walkers, because they could “cause accidents when not in control.” Although it’s not clear whether he’s referring to the dogs or bike riders being out of control.

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Local 

The Southern California Association of Governments, aka SCAG, wants your opinion on plans to shape their transportation, housing and climate policy for the next few years; the group may be awkward and ponderous, but they’ve also made some good moves to support active transportation in recent years. Thanks to Kent Strumpell for the heads-up.

Bicycling talks with LA-based ex-pro Phil Gaimon about whether drivers know bike laws — or whether bike riders do, either. And advises against confronting people whose transportation can transform into a multi-ton weapon. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Metro offers a first look at the 5.5-mile Rail-to-Rail walk/bike path currently under construction along the neglected Slauson corridor right-of-way in South LA.

The Beach Cities Health District is building short bike and pedestrian path on Prospect Ave near their Redondo Beach headquarters, part of the South Bay Cities planned 200-mile bike network.

That’s more like it. Long Beach is addressing bikeshare affordability by creating the Bike Share for All program, allowing low-income people who live, work or attend school in the city to purchase an annual bikeshare pass for just five bucks. Even I could afford that.

 

State

Calbike says it’s time to divest from regressive road building and invest in Complete Streets, active transportation and transit. And calls on you to demand that AB 1525, the Equity-First Transportation Funding Act, get a hearing before the full state Assembly; the bill would require 60% California’s transportation budget be spent in disadvantaged communities.

A Santa Barbara columnist calls on local residents to kick the car habit and embrace their inner bicycle.

Streetsblog says the bike path to San Francisco via Treasure Island, with a 17 percent grade, is only for the strong and confident.

 

National

Left-leaning The Nation says it will take “unprecedented investment in infrastructure and public transit” to break America’s car-dependency.

Seattle’s public health staff offers some of the best advice I’ve seen on how to share the road with people on bicycles, including “become a bicyclist” and “Just be nice!”

Seattle police weren’t nice, though, actually earning money while developing tactics to use bikes to confront angry protesters.

A Reno newspaper talks with local bike riders about their experiences, including one with a four hour, 67-mile round trip ride to work.

A Michigan man accused of killing a bike rider while fleeing from police in a high-speed chase will stand trial later this year after rejecting a plea deal.

A Dayton, Ohio website recommends a trip to the Bicycle Museum of America in New Bremen, where you’ll find over 200 bicycles on display, along with other bike artifacts.

When a St. Louis woman challenged 50 local leaders to go carfree for just one day, only nine managed to do it.

The kindhearted Maine homeless woman who used the last of her money to buy a new bike for a three-year old boy after his was stolen received over $11,000 donations to pay off the car she has been living in.

The white New York hospital woman captured in a viral video trying wrest and whine a bikeshare bike out of the grasp of the Black teenager who had rented it has been placed on leave by Bellevue Hospital pending a review of the incident.

Sayfullo Saipov, the convicted New York terrorist who killed eight people and injured dozens of others as he rampaged down a Manhattan bike path in a rented truck four and a half years ago, will spend the rest of his life in Colorado’s Supermax prison after he was sentenced to eight consecutive life terms. So that means when he dies, they’ll dig him up and toss him in a cell until he dies again, and start the process over. Right?

In a powerful statement, Pennsylvania bicyclists marked bike week by posing ghost bikes on the steps of the state capital representing the people killed riding bikes on the state’s roadways. California’s state capitol building doesn’t have enough steps for the roughly 160 ghost bikes we’d need every year.

A relatively recent convert to bike advocacy offers advice on how to make urban riding in DC safer and less intimidating, most of which applies anywhere. It’s also one of the few pieces I’ve seen that gives biking advice from a Black woman, rather than to them.

The DC area is getting a new 18-mile protected bike path — as long as you don’t mind the roaring noise and breath sucking fumes that come from riding next to a major freeway.

The Washington Post talks with the Red Bike guy who gained viral fame for shouting down Neo-Nazis from a bikeshare bike.

A Florida man fears 2023 will be a bad year for bike riders, after he was twice struc by drivers in separate incidents since the first or the year.

 

International

Bicycling examines the takeaways from the recent Velo-City conference, where leaders from 60 countries discussed how to make cities better for bicyclists, including using cargo bikes as a real solution to traffic. Once again, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

The 70-something British woman who was knocked down, then run over by a drunk ex-cricket player while riding her bike suffered life-changing injuries, and suffers from nightmares every night a year later; the driver was sentenced to just two years, despite testing over four times the legal alcohol limit.

A group of people abused by priests made a bike pilgrimage from Germany to Rome to share their concerns with Pope Francis, and urge him to use his power to heal and prevent abuses in the Catholic Church.

Listening to your earbuds while biking in Spain could cost you the equivalent of $216.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former Giro winner Tao Geoghegan Hart is out of the race after breaking his hip in a crash that also saw race leader Geraint Thomas and second-place Primož Roglič hit the pavement. You can read it on AOL this time if Bicycling blocks you. 

Russian pro Gleb Syritsa stripped naked to show off the gruesome road rash he suffered in a crash during the opening stage of the mathematically challenged six-day Four Days of Dunkirk stage race.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you base you helmet choice on advice from Good Housekeeping — yes, the homemake magazine. Your new bike tubes could be made from your last ones.

And we may have to deal with bearish LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about t-boning a real one.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

It’s Bike to Work Day, LA Times talks with seven bike-riding Angelenos, and how the press blames crash victims

Happy Bike to Work Day.

But just between us, feel free to bike anywhere.

I won’t tell.

While it’s not the bicycling equivalent of Trick or Treat that it used to be, Spectrum News 1 reports several LACBC chapters will be operating pit stops, including in West Hollywood, Culver City and Santa Monica.

Metro is hosting a Bike to Work Day celebration at Union Station until noon today.

Bike to Work Day Celebration

  • May 19 @ 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • Union Station, 800 N Alameda St
  • Los Angeles, CA 90012 United States

Ride Metro Bike Share to work on Bike to Work Day! Stop by our booth in Union Station West for free coffee, pastries, and passes for FREE 30-minute rides.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition is teaming with Pasadena nonprofit Day One for a Bike to Work Day stop at City Hall.

That will be followed by a Handlebar Happy Hour this evening.

It’s a good day for a multimodal commute, with free transit for bike riders throughout the LA area.

Saturday’s daylight Ride of Silence has been moved from the Rose Bowl to Memorial Park in Old Pasadena.

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Nice piece from the LA Times, which talks with a broad cross-section Angelenos who love riding their bikes, despite the obvious obstacles.

“The concern is very simple,” bike activist Michael Schneider said. “People feel like they’re gonna die if they bike in L.A.”

Over the past five years, 96 cyclists have been killed on Los Angeles roads, an average of 18 a year, according to LAPD data. So far this year, six have died, including Andrew Jelmert, a 77-year-old real estate agent struck by a driver in Griffith Park in April, and days later, Leonidas Accip Serech who was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Koreatown. That same week, a third cyclist, John Hermoso, was killed while riding near Santa Clarita, outside Los Angeles city limits.

And yet a hardy 3% of L.A. residents, about 120,000 people, through wit, will, joy or necessity, carve out their daily commutes and other trips on two wheels.

The riders range from Schneider and legendary Bike Kitchen founder Jimmy Lizama, to Cal State LA assistant professor Michael Runnels and Lena Williams of People for Mobility Justice.

Most focus on the surprising convenience and sheer joy of riding a bike, despite the built-in inconvenience and inequity of LA-area streets.

Here’s just a portion of what Runnels had to say, in response to the question “What’s the most fun you can have on a bike in L.A.?”

Descending down a hill from Griffith Park. Los Angeles is an unfurling gorgeous flower that has no center — continuous gorgeous petals. And the only way that I began to see how this beautiful city is tied together is on the saddle of a bike. I mean you could see, in a poor neighborhood, you’ll tend to go slower because the roads are maintained less effectively. If you bike to Beverly Hills, the pavement turns smooth. You can see the theory of a city: where the money goes, where the money does not go. The views of the city that’s nestled in the mountains right next to the ocean — it’s stunning. So riding your bikes with friends, in this staggering natural beauty, you’re earning this beauty. You’re getting exercise, you have a zeroed out carbon footprint, and you’re making bonds with your community in ways you could never do with a car.

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

It’s today’s must read piece. So take a few minutes and read the whole thing.

We’ll wait.

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In the day’s other must-read, Slate takes a deep dive into how news organizations cover car collisions when the victim is on foot, or otherwise outside the vehicle.

Subtly — or not so subtly — blaming the victim by parroting police reports, without taking an objective look at what really happened.

Across the country, media outlets consistently employ practices that traffic safety experts and advocates object to—writing headlines about pedestrian and cyclist fatalities in the passive voice and highlighting the vehicle instead of the driver (i.e., “pedestrian struck by car” instead “driver strikes pedestrian”). Research suggests that American reporting is much more likely to focus on the pedestrian or cyclist who is struck, rather than the driver behind the wheel. Recognizing the problem, a 2018 Columbia Journalism Review article offered guidance to reporters and editors: “When covering car crashes, be careful not to blame the victim.”

Because most people learn about these incidents from the press, reporting habits around roadway deaths have attracted more scrutiny as pedestrian and cyclist fatalities rise, surging 46 percent and 36 percent, respectively, from 2010 to 2019. Roadways have grown even more dangerous during the pandemic, with more than 42,000 people dying on American roadways in 2021, a 10.5 percent annual increase, the highest on record. Meanwhile, traffic fatalities have fallen steadily across most of Europe and East Asia…

The media’s role in this conversation matters. Public pressure can help push transportation agencies to revise their approaches to road safety, something that the growing death toll suggests is overdue. Media coverage can be instrumental in shaping such pressure, but only if newsrooms dig deeper in their crash reporting and guard against blaming the very people who are getting killed.

Unlike the Times story, this one won’t make you smile. But it’s every bit as important a read.

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Streetsblog reports that a Metro committee has recommended pulling the plug on the $6 billion plan to widen the 710 Freeway, which would require demolishing hundreds of homes and businesses.

Let’s hope that means they’re finally getting it, recognizing that we can’t keep building traffic-inducing highways when the world is literally on fire.

Or maybe not.

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GCN explains how to recycle old bike tires.

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Local

Streets For All is endorsing Bryant Odega to replace outgoing LA councilmember Joe Buscaino in CD15, noting he’s the only candidate for the post who has endorsed the 25×25 plan to return 25% of LA street space to human use.

 

State 

Bike to Work Day returns to San Diego after a two-year pandemic-induced hiatus, with 100 pit stops scattered around the city.

A Los Angeles expat has turned his high-end Sonoma home into a bike-centric clubhouse for his friends.

 

National

Seriously? House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy slammed Speaker Nancy Pelosi over a proposal to give House staffers free Peloton memberships, when families are struggling to find baby formula — then joined 191 other Republicans to vote against funding to address the formula shortage.

Garmin’s new $400 bike tail light comes complete with a rear-facing, hi-def bike cam and built-in radar to warn you about oncoming vehicles.

Bicycling says Coldplay wants you to help provide the pedal power to power their shows. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

An Idaho man celebrates riding 200,000 miles over 36 years. Something I was on track for before diabetes and other associated health problems knocked me off my bike.

A Denver weekly says the city’s rating as one of the nation’s safest cities for bike commuters doesn’t jibe with its rising traffic death toll, six years after adopting a five-year Vision Zero plan.

Denver riders who missed out on one of the city’s ebike rebate vouchers will get a second chance in 60 days, when any unused vouchers go back on the market.

An Illinois woman was sentenced to five years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a Wisconsin man who was riding his bicycle against traffic.

That’s more like it. Philadelphia is adding bicycle parking patrols to target drivers who park in bike lanes.

 

International

Police in Liverpool, England caused an uproar when they tweeted bicyclists should ride with courtesy and care, with bike riders angrily noting they’re not the ones who are killing people.

Undefeated English UFC featherweight Lerone Murphy reports he nearly died after he was struck by a careless driver while riding his bike, and nearl bled out when it took 45 minutes for an ambulance to get there.

Speed cams work. A speed camera installed to enforce a British city’s new 20 mph speed limit caught 1,100 drivers in just the first 24 hours — and a whopping 23,500 speeding drivers before it was officially turned on. So what the hell is California waiting for?

The wife of the inventor of Haribo gummy bears was one of us, riding her bike to make deliveries of the then new confection around Bonn, Germany in the 1920s.

Ukrainian soldiers are turning to local ebike maker Delfast, mounting bikes with anti-armor rocket launchers to turn them into stealth tank killers.

 

Competitive Cycling

Spanish pro Juan Pedro López held on to the pink leader’s jersey in Wednesday’s 11th stage of the Giro, as Italy’s Alberto Dainese won the stage, becoming the first Italian to win at this year’s race.

Disappointing news, as Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay was forced to withdraw from the Giro hours after becoming the first Black African to win a Grand Tour stage, due to a hemorrhage suffered in his left eye when he popped a bottle of prosecco to celebrate his victory, and was struck by the cork.

Thirty-nine-year old Italian cyclist Domenico Pozzovivo is fighting through pain from a horrific head-on crash by a driver two years ago to compete in the Giro, assuming the sole leadership of the Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert after Girmay was forced to drop out.

 

Finally…

Your next carbon frame could be virtually unbreakable. A pair of exercise bikes went down with the Titanic 110 years ago.

And Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy is one of us. Or at least, the fictional president he played was.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Metro picks cars over bikes in NoHo, Flax says bicyclists really are entitled, and bus/bike lanes proposed for SaMo Blvd

Happy International Winter Bike to Work Day!

Even if it goes completely unnoticed here in Southern California, where we don’t have to worry about chipping the ice and snow off our bikes. 

Let alone ourselves at the end of a sunny winter’s ride. 

Photo by photorama from Pixabay.

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Maybe it’s time to sound the alarm.

Last week, we mentioned that Metro’s renderings for a planned transit-oriented development at the North Hollywood station didn’t show the existing bikeways currently serving the area.

Apparently, there’s a reason for that.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton writes that a new presentation of the project — which would replace a huge surface parking lot with over 1,500 new housing units, as well as retail and office space — does show plans for bike lanes.

Just not as good as what’s there right now.

The massive project, which sits right next to the connecting point for the Burbank-Chandler and Orange Line multi-use paths, will erase a popular bike path connecting to the pathways. And replace it with a convoluted series of bike lanes that will encourage bicyclists to dangerously break the law by riding against traffic.

Here’s what Linton has to say.

Currently cyclists – including me and my daughter – heading from NoHo Station toward Burbank utilize the existing bus plaza sidewalk (which is going away) to get to Metro’s bike path (which is going away) that runs along the north side of Chandler Boulevard between Fair Avenue and Vineland Avenue.

LADOT expects eastbound bicyclists to go out of their way to cross four to five lanes of traffic on Chandler, then to make an uncomfortable left turn onto Vineland (where lots of drivers are turning right) to get to the Burbank-Chandler path. Cyclists will likely choose to salmon-ride against traffic in the westbound bike lane (or on the sidewalk), because that will be more direct and faster. (Similarly ridiculous circulation is shown on Chandler west of Lankershim. LADOT somehow expects cyclists to cross to the north side of Chandler at the station, then cross Chandler again in 500 feet to go to a median bikeway on the south side of Chandler.)

To make matters worse, the bike path is due to be replaced by, you guessed it, a parking garage.

And not just any parking garage, but a concrete behemoth with spaces for 3,300 drivers and their vehicles. Which would suggest that Metro has given up on getting Angelenos out of their cars, even as the world is literally burning.

It also suggests that Metro believes bike riders have a place on the road, but only if we don’t inconvenience all those important people in cars in any way.

Here’s Linton again.

Why wasn’t this path, a big active transportation priority, part of Metro’s site requirements? It sure looks like bike circulation was a non-priority – an afterthought – something to be half-assedly shoehorned in after cars took up lots of space.

(And, frankly, this is how Metro treats stations, bikeways, and transit-oriented development. With no public notice or input, Metro yanked an approved bikeway from its Rosa Parks Station revamp, while allowing drivers to speed through the middle of the station complex. The Expo Line bike path has an awful, dangerous gap at Culver City Station where cyclists are dumped out to onto busy streets just before they reach the station. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: “Nobody bikes to these stations anyway” because Metro makes them inhospitable to bicycling.)…

The project really should be re-worked to include a continuous bike path from Vineland to at least Tujunga Avenue. Ideally the path would bridge over Lankershim and Vineland. That continuous path was shown in renderings circulated in 2016. If Metro and (Councilmember Paul) Krekorian are serious about passing a habitable climate along to the next generation, this feature should be put back in.

We’ll look forward to future public meetings when we’ll have the chance to offer some very negative feedback.

In the meantime, maybe it’s time to tell Krekorian, who singlehandedly canceled shovel-ready plans for a lane reduction and bike lanes on Lankershim Blvd, he needs to do better.

A lot better.

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Surprisingly, longtime bike scribe Peter Flax agrees with all those people who say cyclists are entitled.

Except he says our primary entitlement is the right to get home alive.

And he’s got the t-shirt to prove it.

Here’s how it gets deployed. Someone sees a rider pedaling in the street and perhaps even gets delayed 15 seconds, and so cyclists are entitled. Or maybe 17 parking spaces were reapportioned to make room for a bike lane, and so cyclists are entitled. Or someone makes the quite novel observation that bike riders don’t pay registration fees or taxes on the gasoline they don’t use. Or somebody sees a rider roll through a stop sign or maybe filter past gridlocked traffic with a smile on their face. You all know the chorus: Cyclists are entitled.

Of course this is total rubbish. The people who do all this moaning about cyclists are drivers who are oblivious to all the obscene entitlements that they enjoy. We are talking about trillions of dollars and decades of subsidies. We are talking about hundreds of millions of free parking spaces. We are talking about the most lurid fantasies of the petroleum and automotive industries being transmogrified into policy. Motorists have been lavished with VIP privileges for so long that they don’t even perceive them.

In order to reclaim that misused term, Flax says we need a bill of rights, including,

  • Cyclists are entitled to get home alive
  • Cyclists are entitled to safe places to ride
  • Cyclists are entitled to travel to work, schools, and local businesses just like everyone else
  • Cyclists are entitled to legal protections
  • Cyclists are entitles to have lawmakers, police departments, and the judicial system acknowledge and protect people who ride bikes
  • Cyclists are entitled to ride on the road

Like anything Flax writes, it’s a good piece. And more than worth a few minutes of your time.

And reminiscent of this Cyclists’ Bill of Rights we mentioned earlier this week, which nearly became law in Los Angeles, before it didn’t.

Oh, and about that t-shirt.

https://twitter.com/EntitledCycling/status/1491896038478675994

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This would be a huge improvement for the deadly, heavily congested corridor, where fallen bicyclist Frank Guzman was killed in 2018.

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Say goodbye to the Higuera Street Bridge over Ballona Creek, with a bigger, better replacement coming by the end of the year — complete with buffered bike lanes and a new ramp leading to the bike path.

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Former American pro Ted King says he’s a fan of fixing his own bike, despite the increasing complexity of modern bicycles.

https://twitter.com/iamtedking/status/1491587873128292353?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1491587873128292353%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-10-february-2022-290211

Although as usual, it’s Phil Gaimon for the win.

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

Brits are getting out the torches and pitchforks over a new bike lane, which narrowed the road so much in some places that drivers aren’t able to pass slower traffic. Which is kind of the point, yes.

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Local

KCRW examines whether banning outdoor bike sales and repair will help stop LA’s bike theft epidemic, where 96% of bike thefts go unsolved. And those are only the ones that get reported to the police.

A Claremont student relates his tale of riding 240 miles from Torrance to Morro Bay on a whim while on winter break.

 

State

Fresno finally announced plans to improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians trying to access a local park, after a bike rider was killed riding next to it last month.

A San Francisco judge says yes, the city did have the right to close the Great Highway to motor vehicles during the pandemic, quashing an effort to force them to reopen it right away.

 

National

A series of events and bike rides will take place across the US this summer to mark the 125th anniversary of the legendary Buffalo Soldiers great bicycle experiment, which culminated in a 1,900-mile expedition that proved the value of bikes as a military tool, before they were rudely shoved aside by motor vehicles.

Forbes offers their take on the best bike locks to help make sure your bike is still there when you come back for it.

The death of a Houston man who was killed when he was right hooked by a pickup driver may be the first case prosecuted under a new Texas law that requires drivers to stop and yield for someone in a crosswalk. Which was kind of the whole rationale for crosswalks to begin with.

A Florida lawyer with a keen sense of the obvious says the recent drawbridge accident that killed a 79-year old woman walking her bike across the span should never have happened.

 

International

Start saving your spare change. A bike tourism company is offering a 36-day, 2,300 mile tour from Paris to Tallinn, Estonia, which follows the route Napoleon took across Europe in the 1800s, for the low, low price of $17,208. Or you can do just eight days for a touch over four grand.

Bloomberg CityLab looks at the rise of bike buses from San Francisco to Barcelona, allowing kids to rule the roads on their way to and from school.

A British professional triathlete was crushed to find her $13,500 tri bike had been crushed on an EasyJet flight.

Happy birthday to legendary Italian framebuilder Ernesto Colnago, who turns 90 this week.

 

Competitive Cycling

Great news, as two-time Grand Tour winner Egan Bernal is back on his feet — literally — after suffering critical injuries when he slammed into a poorly parked bus while training in his native Colombia.

 

Finally…

Bike theft at the Beijing Olympics. Nothing like a company naming their new ebike for the sole purpose of getting free publicity on social media.

And that feeling when traffic engineers respond to complaints about a badly designed bikeway.

By adding a sign.

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

New USDOT head wants agency to think small, just moving money around won’t cut it, and a call to keep Ojai bike lanes

Maybe there’s reason to be optimistic about federal transportation policy, for the first time in a long time, as new Transportation Secretary Mayor Pete talks with Axios.

And says it’s time to think small.

On ways the pandemic has changed transportation forever, Buttigieg said his department will be thinking more “micro”: “We think trains, planes and automobiles. But what about bikes, scooters — wheelchairs, for that matter? And getting around in a way that’s a little closer to home.”

Buttigieg goes on to add that roads aren’t just for motor vehicles, and calls out the need for pedestrians, individuals, bicycles and businesses to co-exist on the same roads.

So under the circumstances, maybe we can forgive him for the hopefully inadvertent implication that people on bikes somehow aren’t individuals.

Photo by Thomas Hobiger from Pexels.

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Speaking of USDOT, representatives from the Bike League, Safe Routes and Transportation for America say the usual approach of forming committees and shifting funds from one silo to another won’t cut it this time around.

Our organizations believe that putting advocacy efforts behind creating new agencies or interagency committees would be a cosmetic change no more meaningful than a bike sharrow painted on a four-lane 45mph road. At worst, it would take energy away from real change by creating a positive talking point when we should be creating a transformational approach to transportation. The urgency of the crises before us require more from us than “checking a box” and potentially undermining the very change we are seeking.

Instead, they say nothing less than a complete shift in emphasis to a Complete Streets approach and a radical reconsideration of how we get around will meet the moment.

For Americans to feel this change on the ground, advocates for active transportation, the environment, and equity need to look beyond retrofitting mistakes that make our roads unsafe for those outside of a car, more polluting, and less of a means of access to opportunity. While seeking a separate Active Transportation Administration (or a mobility or research agency) may sound like an innovative idea, we firmly believe that exiling non-drivers off to the jurisdiction of a separate administration will not create safe, convenient, and just mobility for people of all travel modes across the transportation system. We need to look at system-wide policy and spending changes that help address the bigger issues of safety, racial equity and climate change. We will be working with our partners to push the Biden administration and the 117th Congress to do just that.

………

An Ojai bike shop calls for support for the new bike lanes on Maricopa Highway before tomorrow’s city council meeting.

Thanks to Zachary Rynew for the heads-up.

………

You won’t find it on SoCal bike calendars, but this Friday is International Winter Bike to Work Day.

Even though we usually have the perfect weather for it, unlike most of the places that celebrate it every year.

So mark it with your own pre-weekend ride to work, school, or wherever you have to go. Or just ride nowhere in particular, if that works better for you.

And drop a line to Metro and your local elected leaders to ask why we’re not doing more to promote year-round bike commuting right here.

………

A woman from the UK writes a Twitter thread on how she went from anti-cyclist to a joyful one.

And offers some insights on how to get more women on bikes — and how not to.

https://twitter.com/SarahJ_Berry/status/1358462229880963084

It’s definitely worth the click to read the full thread.

………

Here’s your chance to take a pretend virtual ride with LA’s own former national crit champ.

And by tomorrow, he means today, if you’re reading this on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Bicycling explains everything you need to know to get rolling on Zwift. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be a Yahoo version of the story this time. 

………

The strip clubs may be closed — except, bizarrely, in San Diego. But clearly, strippers of a sort are still hard at work.

………

The Department of DIY strikes again. Even if some people would prefer concrete to paint.

https://twitter.com/gazza_d/status/1358332901935431680?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1358332901935431680%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-8-february-2021-280743

………

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

No bias here. An Aussie news host calls people on bicycles “a menace to themselves and others,” insisting bike riders should be required to pay registration fees to hold them accountable for their behavior, and banned from major roads and pathways.

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

A Kansas man faces multiple charges for allegedly attacking a police officer, who was responding to an unrelated call when the man rode past on his bike and reportedly tried to get the cop’s gun.

………

Local

The Malibu Times looks at Phil Gaimon’s latest shot at Everesting, and his choice of Trancas Canyon Road to make the attempt. Unfortunately, the effort failed when unusually warm weather forced him to abandon; no word yet on whether he’ll try again.

Middle Eastern models are wanted for an outdoor photo shoot riding ebikes and scooters in Santa Monica.

Mexican actress and singer Eiza González is one of us, even if she was a little unsteady on her bike while riding in Los Angeles.

 

State

Orange resident Diana Rodriguez pled not guilty to three felony counts for allegedly using her car as a weapon to deliberately run down her boyfriend as he was riding away on his bike; she also faces a pair of sentencing enhancements, as well as misdemeanor drug charges. A neighbor had to use a jack to get the car off him. Something tells me they may not be spending Valentines Day together this year.

Sad news from Fresno, where a man was killed in a collision after allegedly riding his bike out from an alley in front of an oncoming driver.

 

National

How to choose and install bike fenders for wet weather rides. Good advice for what passes for winter in Los Angeles, where all you have to worry about is getting a little wet. You can read the story on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you out. 

A Seattle bookkeeper has been charged with swindling $200,000 from an unidentified high-end mountain bike manufacturer – an amount that could easily bankrupt most bikemakers.

The bighearted employees of a Boise, Idaho gas station dipped into their own pockets to buy a new bike for their favorite customer, after noticing the bicycle belonging to the special needs man was wearing out.

A Minneapolis op-ed says bike lanes have made the city’s streets safer, as injuries have fallen despite an increase in bicycling rates.

A writer for Streetsblog New York says the solution to pedestrian injuries is to build more protected bike lanes.

A Pennsylvania bill that would legalize parking protected bike lanes in the state has been named after a pair of bike-riding women who were killed as a result of traffic violence on streets that didn’t have them.

Juli Briskman, the bike-riding woman who gained fame for flipping off Trump’s motorcade — then lost her job in retaliation — is now building bike lanes after winning election to the board of supervisors in her Virginia county.

Mardi Gras may be cancelled this year, but you can’t stop the spirit, as New Orleanians decorated their homes instead of floats to mark the day, making for an ideal self-guided bike tour.

 

International

Britain’s Independent examines eight of the best multitools to stuff in your pack for quick fixes on the road.

Munich residents will get their bike lanes back, after the city decided to make several popup bike lanes that were removed for the winter permanent, with plans to restripe them in the spring.

Looks like the Philippine’s Quezon City is serious about keeping drivers out of bike lanes, fining 616 motorists for blocking bike lanes so far this year.

A Kiwi planner offers a very brief argument for why people in her profession should just say no to Cyclist Dismount signs, because they does nothing to improve safety and most riders will just ignore them anyway.

Melbourne, Australia business owners say they’d rather have their parking spaces back and let bike riders fend for themselves on the busy street — even though just 70 spaces were taken out, and ten times that many people pass by on bikes every day.

Australian officials are searching for a Canadian man who disappeared while on a 200-mile bike ride last week; he was planning to take a mountain crossing locals insist is impassible by bicycle.

 

Competitive Cycling

British cyclist Tom Pidcock set tongues wagging with a remarkable time of 13:25 for a 5k run during an off-bike training session, just five seconds off the British record and 50 seconds off the world record; he plans to repeat the run later in the week to confirm his time after it was challenged by several runners and triathletes.

Twenty-one-year old Belgian cyclist Remco Evenepoel finally got the all-clear to resume training after his horrific crash in last year’s Tour of Lombardy, where he flipped over a bridge wall on a high-speed descent and tumbled down a ravine.

UCI says keep your damn forearms off the handlebars, too. Not surprisingly, pro cyclists aren’t thrilled with the new safety restrictions, including the ban on the Super Tuck position.

USA Cycling is using grant money to build diversity and inclusion in the sport from the ground up.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to flee from police on your bike, try not to ride into a ditch. Why change tires for gravel when you can just zip new tread on?

And this is who we share the road with.

………

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

OCTA wants your transportation input, San Diego gears up for Bike Month, and a zombie project on Magnolia Blvd

The Orange County Transportation Authority wants to know how you get around the county.

And yes, the correct answer is by bike.

OCTA Seeks Community Input on O.C. Transportation Needs

Transportation Needs Assessment Survey is available online and in multiple languages through March

ORANGE – The Orange County Transportation Authority is conducting an online survey to gain better insight into how people living in Orange County are changing the way they get around the county.

The Transportation Needs Assessment Survey is intended to gauge people’s opinions on the current public transit system and help shape future transportation planning in Orange County.

The online survey is part of an ongoing effort by OCTA to reach out to current riders of OC Bus and Metrolink, as well as non-riders, to deliver a balanced and sustainable transportation network for the county and to enhance overall quality of life.

The survey, at www.OCTAsurvey.com, will be online through the end of March. In an effort to engage residents from a variety of backgrounds, the survey is available in English and six other languages, including Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, Korean, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

“Our goal is to ensure all residents have a voice when it comes to transportation needs,” said OCTA Chairman Steve Jones, also the mayor of Garden Grove. “The Transportation Needs Assessment is an opportunity for residents to have a say in local and regional mobility and to ensure everyone is being served.”

The brief survey, which should take approximately 10 minutes or less to complete, asks how residents currently get around Orange County, and seeks suggestions on what can be improved to encourage people to use public transportation or consider active transportation options, such as walking and cycling.

For more information about the OC Bus system, visit www.OCBus.com and take the survey at www.OCTAsurvey.com.

Although I’m still not sure there’s life beyond the Orange Curtain.

Photo by 3888952 from Pixabay.

………

While we’re on the topic of points south, San Diego is already making plans for this year’s Bike Month and Bike to Work Day.

Save the date! The 30th Annual SANDAG Bike to Work Day will be Thursday, May 14, 2020. Online registration will open on March 2. Register by April 12 for a chance to win a $500 gift card to Moment Bicycles!

Interested in hosting an official Bike to Work Day pit stop? Applications will be accepted from March 2–20. Support new and experienced riders throughout the county as they roll by a pit stop to pick up a free t-shirt, snacks, and encouragement.

Be sure to stay tuned to the SANDAG Facebook page to vote for this year’s official Bike to Work Day t-shirt later this month!

For more information about Bike to Work Day, visit the iCommute Bike Month web page.

Needless to say, LA Metro apparently hasn’t given it much — or any — thought, with last year’s page still online., and no mention of events past next month.

Which could go a long way towards explaining why LA’s Bike Month, and Bike to Work Day in particular, have petered out in recent years.

Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

………

Leone also forwards a busy calendar of events from the San Diego County Bike Coalition, starting with a bike touring weekend and basic road safety class tomorrow.

………

A Twitter thread from Streetsblog makes the case that the proposed widening of Magnolia Blvd in North Hollywood is a zombie project that has somehow lived on, despite a call to narrow the street in the city’s mobility plan.

………

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

Bike riders in Christchurch, New Zealand, face a rising bikelash, as drivers demand that riders need to be educated and wear hi-viz. Or maybe just get the hell off the roads.

………

Local

CicLAvia is starting the year off on the right foot, or maybe wheel, with a six-mile route down historic Central Ave in South LA this Sunday.

Spectrum News 1 profiles LA’s Areli Morales, who relies on Metro Bike bikeshare to support her carfree lifestyle.

The beachfront Marvin Braude Bike Trail is getting a much-needed facelift north of the Santa Monica pier, including widening the path and adding a separate walking path like below the pier, in time for the busy summer riding season.

 

State

Calbike says a change in state law led to the passage of a $90 million bond to fund San Diego bike projects.

A Palm Springs bicyclist wants the city to rip out some recent road diets on arterial streets, saying he prefers sharrows. Unlike most bicyclists and the bike curious, who would rather see some degree of separation from cars, if not protection.

Conejo Valley high school students will be collecting new or used bicycles for Wheels to Africa on March 7th; the Virginia nonprofit ships bikes to Africa to provide mobility for people in need.

 

National

It’s rude to draft a stranger without getting an okay first. But for a woman, it’s downright creepy and scary to have a man on an ebike on her wheel for the entire ride.

Peloton didn’t just offer to give people one of their “like new” stationary bikes in exchange for a Flywheel stationary bikes after winning a lawsuit against their competition. Owners report Peloton plans to brick their Flywheel bikes at the end of next month.

Curbed explains everything you always wanted to know about ebikes, but were afraid to ask; meanwhile Electrek finds five ebikes under a grand.

Portland bike owners can now report stolen bikes online. Which should solve the problem of cops who don’t want to be bothered with writing up a report.

Houston wants bike riders to get creative with rolling two-wheeled artworks for the city’s first Art Bike Parade in May.

A Saint Louis bike rider was run down by a heartless coward who fled the scene in a crash caught on security cam video. Not an apparently driverless El Camino, as the story suggests.

Chicago will now allow parking enforcement officers to photograph drivers who block bus or bike lanes so a ticket can be mailed to the owners, even if they move their vehicles before they can be ticketed onsite.

Massachusetts will finally get a hands-free law for drivers on Sunday. Although studies show even hands-free mode isn’t safe

A writer for Gear Patrol rides his first double century, from New York’s Hudson Valley through Vermont.

New York Mayor de Blasio threw his own Department of Transportation Commissioner under the bus, backtracking on a long-delayed bike lane just a day after she had announced it was moving forward.

An op-ed by a pair of “avid” New York bicyclists offers advice on how to how to ride a bike in the city and live to tell the tale.

A Florida sheriff’s deputy in an unmarked car crashed into a man on a bike after the victim allegedly darted into traffic.

 

International

A British man gets a well-deserved four and a half years for using a three-foot samurai sword to steal a bicycle from a 13-year old boy.

A UK website makes their picks for the best bicycling gear of 2020 to get the most out of your ride.

A mountain bike and helmet triggered a search, and hopefully a rescue, after they were left untouched for four days on New Zealand’s Great Barrier Island.

Unbelievable. The allegedly intoxicated man who ran down five Australian bicyclists as they rode in a bike lane was granted bail on a previous drug charge just one day before the crash. Just one more example of authorities keeping dangerous drivers on the road until it’s too late.

This is who we share the roads with. An Australian man was the victim of a vicious ax murder a couple hours after he was involved in a road rage incident.

The coronavirus claimed an indirect victim when an Irish bike rider was killed in a collision in Thailand, after he was prevented from flying home due to travel restrictions imposed as a result of the virus.

 

Finally…

Apparently, accused bike path terrorists are just a tad touchy when you wake them up. Harrison Ford was a dirty, rotten fibber when he denied riding an ebike.

And Aussie road champ Amanda Spratt gets goat bombed.

https://twitter.com/AmandaSpratt/status/1230196465273888768?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1230196465273888768&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2F271389-g-says-overall-peloton-standard-has-gone-evenepoel-20-sets-2020-alight-froome

Morning Links: Woman bike rider critically injured in Long Beach, and Pure Cycles rescues Bike to Work bike theft victim

A woman was critically injured riding her bike in the Belmont Shores neighborhood of Long Beach early yesterday morning, after she allegedly went through a red light and was struck by a driver.

As always, the question is whether there were any independent witnesses who actually saw who had the green light.

Or if Long Beach police relied strictly on the driver’s account, since the victim would have been unable to share her side of the story.

Either way, it’s a reminder to always stop for red lights and observe the right-of-way.

Because the consequences can be life changing. Or ending.

Thanks to John McBrearty for the heads-up.

………

At least one rider made it out for yesterday’s soggy Bike to Work Day.

And on a very cool Pedersen bike, no less.

And hats off to Michael Fishman and Pure Cycles for saving the day when the unthinkable, but all too common, happened to a rider in DTLA.

Meanwhile, LADOT hosted a pair of pop-up traffic safety installations, despite the wet Bike to Work Day weather.

………

Lots of news coverage from around the US for Wednesday’s Ride of Silence to honor injured and fallen bike riders.

Including right here in Pasadena, though the LA ride seems to merit nary a whisper.

Like Rides of Silence in Philadelphia, and a small Nebraska town. Lubbock and Houston, Texas. Ridgeland, Mississippi. Lansing, Michigan, where billboards also called out the dangers of distracted driving.

Not to mention San Francisco, where riders confronted winds and rain to go with the usual tears.

Meanwhile, Denver responded to the 88 people killed on the city’s streets last year by putting up signs marking the site of each needless death; the city’s mayor confessed to an inadequate response to the deadly streets.

………

Spectrum New 1 catches up with Keith Jackson, the bike rider who was nearly killed when he was run down riding on La Tuna Canyon last year.

Jackson has had to relearn how to walk, eat and talk after spending two months in a coma.

And as happens all too often, the driver who hit him sped off and hasn’t been seen since.

But at least his crash resulted in narrowing the wide traffic lanes on La Tuna and installation of a buffered bike lane. One of the rare instances of city officials responding to a near-tragedy by actually fixing the street where it happened.

Jackson will be at Sunday’s Finish the Ride in Griffith Park to spread the need for safer streets if you want to wish him well in his recovery; registration ends at 6 pm tomorrow.

And give him my best wishes while you’re at it.

………

It’s not just drivers who give in to road rage.

Police in a Denver suburb are looking for a bike rider who yelled at a woman for blocking a bike lane, after she pulled her car over because her mother, who was in the passenger seat, wasn’t feeling well.

When the driver caught up to him at a red light, he allegedly kicked and punched the car, then reached in to grab her mother, before spitting on both women and riding away.

Let’s hope the woman he was riding with saw all that, and took it as fair warning before he turns that violent temper her way some day.

Although it does make you wonder what the driver said when she caught up to him.

………

Local

Today is the last day to submit comments on the shamefully inadequate Beverly Hills Complete Streets plan.

Popular offroad route Sullivan Canyon will close for maintenance for six weeks starting June 3rd. Thanks to Steve Messer for the tip.

Curbed’s Alissa Walker says LA’s future is on foot, even though the city is still designing the streets for cars.

Metro is considering three alternatives for extending the LA River Bike Path.

WeHoVille looks forward to the August CicLAvia connecting Hollywood and West Hollywood. And so an I, since I should finally be back on my bike by then.

KNBC-4 says keep your eyes peeled for Gabe the Sasquatch at Sunday’s Mission to Mission edition of 626 Golden Streets.

The fight over moving a row of palm trees to make room for a Complete Street makeover of Long Beach’s Marina Drive goes on, despite a Coastal Commission ruling giving the okay for the move.

Long Beach will celebrate Bike Month with a three-mile Pedal & Picnic ride for all ages on Saturday.

 

State

OCTA has rescheduled the Orange County Bike Rally for next Thursday, following yesterday’s rainout.

Carlsbad pulled the plug on its planned bikeshare system, even though it would have been operated with no risk to the city.

A 63-year old Ramona man took a cross-country bike tour to ride himself into better health, and raise funds for a local museum; so far he’s raised just $640 of the $5,000 goal.

A bighearted high school freshman from Santa Ynez organized her second annual fundraising bike ride to provide bicycles and tools to girls in rural Cambodia, to help ensure they can get to school to receive an education.

A Fresno driver relies on the built-in cameras in his Tesla to prove a hit-and-run bike rider really did run into him, and not the other way around.

Sad news from Oakland, where an 83-year old man was killed attempting to ride his bike across a busy state highway.

Police arrest 30 homeless people in a warrant sweep along a Sacramento bike path.

 

National

Bike Snob says ignoring bike riders won’t make us go away.

Now both Uber and Lyft are encouraging their drivers and passenger to look for bicyclists to avoid doorings.

Outside offers advice on how to buy a mountain bike. And says softails are back, except now they’re on high-end roadies and gravel bikes.

That’s more like it. El Paso, Texas authorities say they know they screwed up by striping a bike lane that’s half gutter and so narrow the bike lane symbol won’t even fit in it. And are considering removing a traffic lane to fix it.

A Minneapolis newspaper offers a belated obituary of a longtime local bike advocate, who was found dead in his home last month due to complications from a lifelong struggle with alcohol.

Chicago bike riders are losing access to a popular shared use pathway along the riverfront after reconstruction partially blocked it, and private security guards have begun illegally enforcing a non-existent ban on bikes.

Police in Fort Wayne, Indiana are looking for a bike-riding man who shot an employee of a property management company before riding away in a full-face helmet, presumably to hide his identity.

Vermont ebike buyers can get a $200 rebate from their utility company. Which they’ll probably need once Trump’s tariff’s kick in.

A Massachusetts woman decides to take advantage of a beautiful spring day to ride her bike to the bank, and ends up at a dumpster. And then a dumpster fire of a car-choked intersection.

New York’s Vision Zero is going the wrong way where bikes are concerned, as the ten people killed riding bicycles so far this year already equal the total for all of 2018.

Maybe city leaders will listen to them now. Seventy DC bike riders fanned out across the city to count drivers blocking bike lanes, logging nearly 500 violations by early afternoon.

A DC writer offers advices on how to bike to work while spending as little as possible on it. People for Bikes offers their tips, as well.

A four-man troupe of bike-riding British Shakespearean actors made their US debut in Virginia this week; the performers have ridden their bikes between performances in 12 countries.

This is why people continue to die on our streets. A drunk driver in South Carolina walked with a lousy 24 hours of community service after she was caught on video crashing into a pedicab, then telling police she had no idea she’d hit anything; fortunately, the pedicab driver didn’t appear to have been injured.

The former chief accountant for the SEC won a whopping $41 million judgement against his Florida homeowners association after crashing his bike into a stanchion they erected on a bike trail.

 

International

Here’s something to look forward to. A writer for Forbes says distracted driving will increase exponentially on the path to self-driving cars.

Canadian Cycling Magazine offers eight tips to bike commute like a pro.

An Ottawa, Canada traffic safety expert calls a painted bike lane “complete lunacy,” saying bicyclists will never be safe on the street as long as they have to share the same flat surface with cars and trucks.

A British MP says he’s going to keep claiming mileage expenses for riding his bicycle on official business, complaints be damned.

Video from an English bus shows the exact moment the driver swerved directly into a bicyclist, knocking the man off his bike; fortunately, he wasn’t seriously injured.

An Iranian prosecutor has decided that it’s sinful for women to ride bicycles and prohibited by Islamic law; police have been told to give women bicyclists a polite reprimand, then impound their bikes if they don’t have ID on them. Or they can use the equivalent of a bike burka so no one can see what they’re riding. No, seriously.

 

Competitive Cycling

If you still haven’t seen Wednesday’s stage of the Amgen Tour of California, what the hell are you waiting for, already?

But you might want to skip this next section.

American Tejay van Garderen lost his lead in the AToC, and then he didn’t, after race officials decided a massive crash near the end of the race unfairly delayed him and other riders. A writer for VeloNews says the jury made the wrong call.

Meanwhile, NBC catches you up with Thursday’s men’s and women’s races.

Bicycling wants to know who’s the 21-year old American kicking ass in the Tour of California.

A pair of women are fighting for greater equality in the race, instead of the lousy three stages — and no live TV time — women cyclists are now offered.

There was a lead change in the Giro, while much of the peloton went down in a massive crash on wet roads.

Wall Street Journal columnist Jason Gay calls Ben King the humble king of American cycling. Unfortunately, the article is hidden behind the Journal’s paywall, so you may not get past the first few paragraphs.

Texas pro Lawson Craddock discusses his road back after riding the entire Tour de France with a broken collarbone last year, and refusing to give up despite finishing dead last as a result.

And last but not least, bike racing returns to LA — or Carson, anyway — with the newly revived La Grange Grand Prix on June 2nd.

 

Finally…

Six times around the world, and his bike its stolen in Californiaon the seventh. We may have to worry about LA drivers crashing into us, but at least we don’t have to worry about crashing into sheep.

And that’s one way to prevent a close pass.

 

Morning Links: Happy Bike to Work Day, Pasadena bike rider injured in hit-and-run, and close call on Orange Line Bike Path

Happy soggy Bike to Work Day!

Hopefully the weather will hold off, so you’ll be able to get out and ride your Bike to Work commute today.

And hopefully the LACBC and LADOT will both keep their promised morning pit stops, despite the forecast.

Especially since both promise fresh donuts and coffee instead of the usual Bike to Work Day energy bar fare.

https://twitter.com/zrch4light/status/1128787896897458176

If no one shows up on Bike to Work Day, they can feel free to send any leftover donuts my way, since it looks like at least another month before I can ride my bike anywhere besides my living room.

Meanwhile, another 74 pit stops are promised throughout the LA area, though no telling whether they will still be there if it rains.

If your commute is too wet, you can hop a bus or train; most local transit systems are offering free rides to anyone accompanied by a bike or helmet today, including Metro and Metrolink. And if the rain lets up, the unimaginatively named Metro Bike bikeshare will be free, as well.

On the other hand, Santa Monica has wisely moved their Bike to Work pit stops at City Hall and the Bike Center to tomorrow, when the forecast calls for drier weather.

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels.com.

………

A Pasadena man is recovering from critical injuries after he was run down by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike across Orange Grove Blvd.

Police tracked the driver to a nearby apartment, where he was taken into custody on suspicion of being drunk and stoned behind the wheel.

And if the street sounds familiar, it’s the same one where Rose City NIMBYs were driven to a frenzy by a group affiliated with traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving to demand that the city keep the street dangerous.

Clearly, they succeeded.

………

Brayden Dakota captured bike cam video of a close call on a blind intersection near the Canoga Station on the Orange Line Bike Path.

Unfortunately, it’s not the first time I’ve seen video of a similar near-collision at that location. Hopefully someone will finally do something to fix the problem, so it will be the last.

………

A new study from a German insurance company ranks Vancouver, British Columbia, as North America’s 2nd best city for bicycling.

The Canadian city was ranked 37th out of the world’s 90 top cities, compared to Montreal at 18th.

San Francisco was the best bike city in the US at 39th, followed by Portland and Seattle.

Not surprisingly, Utrecht in the Netherlands ranked first, followed by Munster, Germany, and Antwerp, Belgium.

Despite its vaunted cycle superhighways, London failed to crack the top 50.

Very surprising, though, was Los Angeles actually making the list at 56th, primarily because we ranked first for the world’s best bicycling weather, though you couldn’t prove it today.

Although we did make another much shorter list awhile back.

………

Good long read from Curbed on reclaiming the feminist legacy of bicycling.

Recovering the feminist legacy of cycling requires overcoming the practical obstacles that keep women off bikes, and making sure women’s voices are heard in city planning. But perhaps most importantly, it will mean reclaiming the joy, pleasure, and sense of possibility that those early cyclists felt. Women deserve to reconnect with the idea that by riding our bikes we are creating a better future, for ourselves and for our cities.

………

Evidently, it’s open season on bike riders.

A Wisconsin teenager was shot in the head as he was riding a bike, in an apparently random, apparently unintentional shooting.

And someone shot an Indianapolis man twice in the leg as he was on an early morning bike ride.

………

More proof that drivers are the same everywhere.

A British Columbia driver calmly cruises down a bike lane, passing traffic on the right, before eventually turning onto a freeway onramp.

………

Watch a hydraulic press destroy an odd assortment of helmets in a fun, but totally meaningless, demonstration.

………

Local

KCRW wants to know if Los Angeles can clean its dirty air. Unless the city provides viable safe alternatives to driving, no.

Streetsblog looks at Tuesday’s Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital in DTLA; Joni Yung offers photos from the event.

KABC-7 says the bike club at Los Angeles Leadership Academy is helping to keep kids motivated and headed in the right direction.

LADOT says plans are moving forward for safety improvements on Winnetka, including nearly a mile of bike lanes, spurred at least in part by the death of a 72-year old bike rider last September. I’m the first to criticize the city council when it’s called for, so let me thank CD3 Councilmember Bob Blumenfield for responding to this tragedy and helping push this project through.

The Pasadena Star-News previews Sunday’s 626 Golden Streets open streets event, which will see streets closed to motor vehicles through South Pasadena, Alhambra and San Gabriel, predicting a turnout of 20,000 people. With more rain forecast for Sunday, they may be right; turnout on a sunny day could be several times that.

The Downtown Pasadena Neighborhood Association will hold a pot luck meeting Thursday evening; among the items to be discussed are proposed enhancements to Cordova Street, including suggestions for a bike lane extending to Arroyo Parkway.

An internationally renowned Palos Verdes artist is staging his first show since he was nearly killed riding his bike on PCH in Malibu after finishing an organized century ride.

Long Beach votes to make e-scooters a permanent addition to the city, while tripling the number allowed.

 

State

Calbike says a pair of bike-friendly bills are making their way through the legislature, including tax vouchers for ebikes, which is scheduled for a vote in the Senate today.

A writer in an Ocean Beach paper says bicycling is great, but he’d rather have parking and his right turn on red back, thank you.

The 13th Annual San Diego Century ride rolls this Saturday, and will be passing through Ramona.

A 10-year old Cambria girl with cerebral palsy can ride a bike for the first time, after a nonprofit and a Texas bikemaker help provide her with an adaptive ebike.

Lyft promises to bring their Jump dockless ebikes back to the Bay Area by June, a full three months before they’ll return to the Big Apple.

Los Angeles should take a clue from Oakland, and add adaptive bikes for people with disabilities to the Metro Bike bikeshare.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a paralyzed Richmond man’s mountain bike handcycle, a crowdfunding page to help pay for a replacement has raised $3,000 of the $10,000 goal.

No surprise here. A Sacramento teenager is suing the police for assault and excessive force, among other allegations, after officers intentionally ran him down on the sidewalk as he tried to flee a traffic stop — for not having a light on his bike.

 

National

A new study shows that 37 million Americans think they put themselves in danger from distracted listening while wearing headphones over the past year.

Uber tells its passengers to stop dooring bike riders already.

Let’s face it. What you really need is a good ale trail.

Forget the standard argument over bike lanes versus parking; near Salt Lake City, it’s bikes versus birds.

Denver is planning to add 17 miles of “high comfort” bike lanes this year, a down payment on the 125 miles planned for the next five years.

In yet another example of keeping dangerous drivers on the road until it’s too late, a Chicago-area driver fled the scene after running down a 6-year old girl on her bike, despite having a revoked license; the schmuck abandoned his truck — and his dog — then turned himself in the next day, most likely giving himself plenty of time to sober up.

A Minnesota letter writer says the law should be changed so kids can ride salmon, because her friend hit some bicycling teens 40 years ago.

No, 25News in Fenton MI, you don’t have to be an “avid” bicyclist to celebrate Bike Month.

A Boston bike shop manager and triathlete offers safety tips for riding your bike. And gets them right for a change.

A Syracuse NY public radio station discusses the meaning of Complete Streets.

A Pennsylvania TV station warns about breaking the law by allowing the bike rack on your car to block your license plate. That’s illegal here in California, as well, though it seems to be seldom enforced.

Baltimore’s drunken, killer hit-and-run ex-bishop is officially out of prison after serving just half of her seven year sentence for fatally running down a man riding a bike. Let’s hope she got sober while she was behind bars. And that a condition of her parole is no more driving. Period.

A Baltimore newspaper explains why car ownership continues to climb in the US, despite alternatives.

They get it. A North Carolina TV station says drivers need to do their part to improve safety by not parking in bike lanes and other multi-use lanes.

 

International

An Ottawa, Canada man is back in the saddle for the first time in a decade after he was critically injured in a bicycling collision, as he trains for a 2K ride on a walking bike — basically a three-wheeled adult balance bike.

Road.cc offers advice for British bike riders who’ve been in a crash, most of which applies on this side of the Atlantic, as well. We should all be jealous of a country where bicyclists are entitled to free legal advice.

The Department of DIY struck in the UK, where someone anonymously posted warning signs after a bike-riding girl was hit by a bus.

An English man rode his custom bike 9,500 miles across the US. And naturally had it stolen once he made it to California.

Um, okay. A Zambian witch-doctor was sentenced to 18 year hard labor for indecent assault against five elderly people that he blamed for using witchcraft to make a boy fall off his bike and die; he took them to a graveyard and made them undress and lie on a grave, then rolled on them to exorcize their powers.

Israeli authorities are charging an ebike rider for the death of a pedestrian after he went through a crowded crosswalk at 15 mph.

 

Competitive Cycling

Wednesday’s Giro offered a preview of what the Amgen Tour of California riders may have to look forward to today.

French cyclist Remi Cavagna rode an “audacious” solo breakaway to victory in the Amgen Tour of California in Tuesday’s third stage. Although he could stand a few lessons on how to descend.

Evidently, Mark Cavendish is no fan of the AToC, comparing Monday’s second stage to sitting on an indoor trainer for seven hours.

Ventura sisters and pro cyclists Kendall and Alexis Ryan discuss women’s parity in cycling in advance of Thursday’s first stage of the truncated women’s Tour of California.

A sports website predicts misery and pain for the women’s teams in the Tour’s three stages, especially on Mt. Baldy and the final stage from Santa Clarita to Pasadena.

VeloNews calls the women’s race a dynamic route with a competitive lineup.

 

Finally…

Don’t just watch Stranger Things, ride it. Seriously, if you’re a known gang member carrying a gun and heroin on your bike, put a damn light on it — the bike, not the gun. Or the heroin.

And why stop for lunch, when you can just have it delivered while you’re stuck in traffic?

 

Morning Links: It’s Bike Week in SoCal, but anti-Bike Week in Riverside, and OC columnist calls out deadly drivers

Today’s common theme?

Bike Week, of course.

Metro is celebrating with a 30 day Metro Bike Pass for just one dollar this month.

LA Downtown News looks forward to tomorrow’s multi-denominational Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital. Unfortunately, you won’t see me there this year as I continue to rehab my knee, even though the Blessing of the Bicycles is my favorite Bike Week event.

The annual Ride of Silence will take place on Wednesday, and for the first time, will travel from the Vermont and Wilshire Metro Station to Los Angeles City Hall. Maybe then our city leaders will get the message.

This is what Zachary Rynew, aka CiclaValley, had to say about it.

This Wednesday evening, there are a number of events across the Southland for the Ride of Silence and if you’re part of this community, I hope you take part.

Commemorating those that have been lost or injured riding in the roadway isn’t an experience we wish for, but it does provide a moment of inspiration. We all share these streets and each Ride of Silence has brought out all factions of our community. While we are blessed to be a part of this group, there’s an obligation to honor those no longer with us. I know from the number of ghost bikes I’ve placed, providing support to even complete strangers gives comfort to us all.

There will be hundreds of rides taking place across the globe, but if you’re in the Los Angeles area, please take the time Wednesday evening to take place in one of the rides at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Thousand Oaks, or the one I’m hosting from the Vermont / Wilshire Station to City Hall.
You can also find a number of other rides across California or the nation by going here. We ride for each other because these roads connect us not just point to point, but person to person.

Thursday is Bike to Work Day, which is the Bike Week equivalent of trick or treating for bike commuters. You’ll find pit stops with treats and other assorted goodies all over LA County; though not all are on the map. Metro will also offer free rides for anyone with a bike or helmet.

The LACBC will have their own Bike to Work Day pit stop on Spring Street in DTLA.

Pasadena and CICLE will bring you a full week of Rose City Bike Week events, ranging from a Taste of Pasadena and Women’s Bike Night, to a Bike from Work Happy Hour and a Bike-In Movie.

Santa Clarita will mark Bike Week with Bike to Work Day and the final stage of this year’s Amgen Tour of California.

Ride with Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole on Saturday to explore the city’s 19 miles of new green bike lanes. Santa Monica Spoke has more Bike Month and Bike Week activities, including a Bike From Work Handlebar Happy Hour.

LA County Bike Week wraps up with the 626 Golden Streets: Mission to Mission ride on Sunday; the Alhambra Source tells you everything you need to know.

OCTA, aka the Orange County Transportation Authority, is hosting a ride on Thursday, plus a chance to win a Trek 2 bicycle or Fitbit Charge 2 if you pledge to ride to work at least one day this month.

San Diego will celebrate Bike to Work Day on Thursday, as well.

Ventura County celebrates Bike Week with a full week of biking to work, instead of a single day, including “entertainment, opportunities and prizes.”

Photo by Ali Arapoğlu from Pexels.

………

On the other hand, hats off to the Riverside Police Department for celebrating National Bike Month and attempting to improve bike safety by — wait for it — cracking down on the vulnerable people on two wheels, and giving the ones in the big, dangerous machines a pass.

If the goal is to get more people on their bikes, that’s the wrong way to go about it.

Let alone improve safety.

………

Powerful piece by Orange County Register columnist David Whiting, who calls out distracted and aggressive drivers for far too many OC bicycling deaths.

He also quotes longtime Orange County bike advocate Bill Sellin extensively.

Except things are even worse than Whiting says. With the death of a man in Santa Ana last week, there have now been four people killed while riding bikes in OC this year, not the three he cites in the article.

Thanks to John McBreaty for the heads-up. 

………

New Orange County Bicycle Coalition board member Mike Wilkinson wonders why downhill riders should have all the fun.

………

Taylor Nichols says if you see this guy riding around the Hollywood Hills, say hi and maybe pass him a few bucks.

………

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

An Aussie driver is accused of running down a man on a bike, intentionally backing over him, and fleeing the scene. Then gets released on a ridiculously low $10,000 bond, and claims she thought she just ran over a piece of metal. Sure. A piece of metal with wheels and a human being attached.

Life is cheap in New Zealand, where a violent road raging driver got ten months home vacation, uh, detention and community service for intentionally swerving at a man riding his bike, forcing him up on the sidewalk, then making a U-turn to come back and slam into him. Then when the victim came to in the street with a severely broken leg, the driver stood over him and said “Serves you right.”

………

Local

Police in South Pasadena are warning about an increase in bicycle thefts.

A new survey shows most Santa Monica bikeshare and e-scooter users are young, affluent and live outside the city. And over half are using them to replace motor vehicle trips.

 

State

Speaking of OCTA, they want your input on how to improve the Beach Boulevard La Habra and Huntington Beach; options include enhanced sidewalks and bicycle paths.

The Orange County Sheriffs Department will conduct a pair of safety enforcement operations today, with a bicycle and pedestrian enforcement in San Clemente, and cracking down on motorcycle safety violations in Stanton. Standard protocols apply; ride to the letter of the law until you leave the city limits. Thanks to Rock Kendall for the tip.

San Diego County has broken ground on what will be the county’s first bike park, scheduled to open later this year.

Los Angeles is known for car chases; in San Diego, they flee on bikes.

Too scary. Someone apparently took a few shots at Oxnard bike rider from a passing car for no apparent reason.

People for Bikes says Santa Barbara is the best bike city in California.

San Francisco’s Timbuk2 is keeping up with the times by shifting its emphasis from messenger bags to backpacks and products designed for women.

Sad news from Stockton, where a hit-and-run driver left a man who was either riding or walking his bike to die alone in the street.

 

National

Open your wallet wide. Because bicyclists will get to pay for Trump’s trade war with China. Especially people in the market for entry level and kids bikes.

Good piece from Curbed’s Alissa Walker, saying bike lanes need barriers instead of just paint, because cities shouldn’t let people on bicycles get run over.

City Lab explores what it will take to finish America’s first coast-to-coast bike trail.

A new app from a pair of Oregon professors promises to give you a green light 80% of the time.

An Idaho letter writer calls for the law to be changed to allow bicyclists to ride facing traffic, on the assumption it will improve safetyHint: It won’t. Riding salmon dramatically increases your risk of a serious crash. 

Nice work. A pair of bicycling Colorado grandmas are hanging it up after riding 20,000 miles on multiple trips across the US, raising nearly three-quarter of a million dollars to fight Huntington’s Disease.

Kindhearted North Dakota firefighters buy a new bike for a boy whose bike was stolen, after seeing a Facebook post about the theft.

A retired Kansas trauma surgeon is planning to ride 1,000 miles from Wichita to Winnipeg, Canada to honor his daughter and raise funds to fight eating disorders, following her death from anorexia and depression.

Not even bike cops are safe from hit-and-run drivers, as a Dallas police officer learned the hard way; fortunately, he was not seriously injured.

Minneapolis police busted a bike rider for smashing the windows on a school bus, though they’re not sure if it’s the same person who vandalized two previous school buses for parking in a bike lane.

Now that’s more like it. A Michigan century ride is providing bicyclists with food stops offering cherry pie along the way, and a hot buffet, live music and cocktails at the end.

Now that’s more like it too. An Indiana bike park has opened an adaptive use trail for kids and adults with disabilities.

Great video of kids from a Massachusetts Boys and Girls Club being surprised with 25 new bicycles.

A biking Buffalo bishop plans to ride 3,000 miles through 600 cities on four continents to raise funds for homeless people and the less fortunate.

A Brooklyn bike path is not the place for a swastika; nowhere else is, either.

A New York letter writer tells the red light-running bicyclist who cursed him out for almost hitting him, “If you ever wonder why arrogant cyclists are so reviled by law-abiding motorists like myself” just look in the mirror. Something tells me there’s another side to this, but still.

You gotta respect a successful Hollywood actor who rides the streets of New York with a wooden crate instead of a basket. And takes his rescue dog with him.

The son of a Pennsylvania police officer who was killed in the line of duty will join in on the 250-mile national police memorial ride to Washington DC to honor fallen officers.

He gets it. A Virginia coffee shop owner has started a petition calling for safer streets for people on bicycles, based on personal experience.

They get it too. A South Carolina newspaper says safety education and increased enforcement won’t reverse the longstanding neglect that kills too many bike riders and pedestrians. And the only way to get truly safe roads is to build them that way.

A Tampa, Florida TV station says putting your garbage can out in the bike lane is a serious problem.

 

International

No more dirty bikes. Now you can buy your own pressure washer made just for washing bicycles for the equivalent of less than $120.

The makers of the new Xtracycle ebike promise it never become obsolete, changing along with the rider through all stages of life.

Riding across Canada with two good legs is hard. Riding 4,500 miles across the country on a handcycle after losing the use of his legs is another thing entirely.

Canadian Cycling Magazine offers tips for beginning riders.

A Toronto newspaper says six years and $2.59 million dollars is a lot for bike parking, even if it does come with showers; they’ve got a point, the project was originally supposed to be done two years ago for less than half of that.

No bias here. A writer for a driving website accuses Montreal’s leaders of having an anti-car agenda, after the city responded to the death of a bike rider by closing a roadway through a park that drivers had been using as a freeway to avoid traffic, and favoring high-speed “racing bike scofflaws.” Just like LA’s Playa del Rey, the action was reversed after angry drivers got out their torches and pitchforks.

A New Brunswick, Canada teenager has developed a bike light designed to show drivers the equivalent of a three-foot passing distance.

British blogger Velo City Girl is working to make bicycling more socially inclusive, while dumping the Lycra.

The New York Times considers the Welsh program allowing doctors to prescribe bikeshare to their patients, saying “take two bike rides and call me in the morning.”

If you build it, they will obey the law. A new study shows that just 5% of Dutch bike riders break the law, compared to 66% of drivers; that rose to 14% of bicyclists when there was no bike infrastructure present.

Just in time for Bike Week, an Aussie columnist describes his journey from timid beginning bike commuter to peak MAMIL.

 

Competitive Cycling

As usual, we’re going to avoid spoilers for this year’s Amgen Tour of California, as well as the Giro d’Italia, for anyone who hasn’t had a chance to catch up on the most recent stages. Which is why we’ll just say Sunday’s first stage of the AToC offered a very dramatic sprint to the finish with a surprising competitor.

The Tour of California continues to grow in international stature, with lots of stars, but no clear favorite. Although it’s questionable what this headline from the LA Times preview even means.

CiclaValley offers his own take on the action about to unfold this week.

VeloNews says the penultimate Mount Baldy queen stage could overshadowed by four potential breakaway stages.

The Santa Clarita Signal looks forward to Saturday’s final stage of the AToC.

And in non-ATOC news, apparently bike racing is the perfect cure for the stress of working with dolphins.

 

Finally…

Now you can own your very own Bird scooter for the low, low price of just $1,299; thanks to David Drexler for the link. When your bike becomes a moveable kinetic sculpture. Real FBI agents hardly ever ride bikes on the job, and they seldom dump live catfish on your lawn.

And apparently, my name has an entirely different meaning north of the border.

Somehow, I prefer the second meaning.

Thanks to Chris Klibowitz for finding that one.

I think.

Morning Links: Happy Bike to Work Day, #CrashCityHall tomorrow, and Rapha says sit on it

Happy Bike to Work Day.

You can ride Metro, Metrolink and many other transit systems free today with your bike, or in some cases, just a helmet.

And don’t forget about the LACBC’s Handlebar Happy Hour at Gulp Sushi Alehouse in DTLA, sponsored by BikinginLA title sponsors Pocrass and De Los Reyes.

………

We’re just one day away from #CrashCityHall.

I hope you can join me, and other walkers and bike riders from throughout Los Angeles, as we crash tomorrow’s city council meeting to demand safer streets for all of us.

And urge our elected leaders to have the courage to do the right thing.

Be there at Los Angeles City Hall, 200 North Spring Street, for the 10 am council meeting. And be sure to fill out a speaker card to get your one minute of speaking time at the microphone.

I’ll try to get there a little early to meet everyone outside; if not, you’ll find me at the back of the chamber as the meeting starts.

And come back this afternoon, when we’ll have two more open letters to the city council, from Amanda Gohl.

………

Local

Streetsblog confirms the arrest in the hit-and-run death of Frederick “Woon” Frazier, while noting that the LAPD has refused to return calls about the case.

CD15 Councilmember Joe Buscaino reports a bike rider was hospitalized after getting struck by a driver in Watts Tuesday evening.

More misleading stats about the Mar Vista Great Streets project from the “chief grassroots organizer” of traffic safety denying “road diet opposition group Restore Venice Blvd,” who concedes there was extensive outreach for the project before accusing the city of inadequate outreach for the project. Here’s my response to her equally misleading post on City Watch.

Curbed recommends four rides to explore Los Angeles on two wheels, including the Eastside Mural Ride, Ballona Creek, and riding to Dodger Stadium.

The Santa Monica Daily Press post their short list of Bike Week activities. Although someone should tell them to post it before most them are over.

Lifehacker says go ahead and get bike riding lessons for your kids, recommending classes from REI and the YMCA, as well as LA’s C.I.C.L.E and Bicycle Kitchen.

 

State

Calbike announces their endorsements for two ballot initiatives, lieutenant governor and a trio of SoCal legislative races.

The Press-Enterprise reports on the Rides of Silence in the Inland Empire.

The local newspaper profiles Folsom’s first family of bicycling.

Bike-riding volunteers deliver fresh burritos to San Francisco’s homeless people each month.

 

National

It turns out Millennials are driving and buying homes after all.

The usual suspects lead a new report of America’s most bikeable cities, with Minneapolis and Portland leading the way, followed by Chicago, Denver, San Francisco and Seattle. It’s a list that bears little resemblance to People for Bikes’ recent rankings.

High on the list of laws that shouldn’t have to be passed, Albuquerque NM is moving to prohibit parking and driving in bike lanes.

The future of bicycling in Kansas City includes a protected and connected bike network.

A Houston writer says drivers have got to stop their victim-blaming excuses.

A Brooklyn website accuses New York of favoring rich ebike riders while thousands of delivery drivers suffer.

A New York bicyclist is suing the city after NYPD officers were caught on camera using their patrol car as a weapon to knock him off his bike, then lied that he resisted arrest, when the video shows him standing calming and submitting to handcuffs. And never mind the dope they claimed he had on him. Intentionally striking a bike rider with a police car is an illegal use of deadly force, posing a risk of serious, if not fatal, injuries even at slow speeds.

Writing in the New York Times, an architect and urban planner says there are better ways of getting around town than driving.

A Pennsylvania man hopes to someday ride a bike again, ten months after he was intentionally run down by the driver of an SUV who fled the scene, and still hasn’t been caught.

South Carolina residents are dusting off their bicycles after learning repairs to a bridge could take four weeks.

 

International

An automotive fleet website ranks the world’s ten best bike cities; New York and DC get an honorable mention.

Now you can sit on, and not just in, your Rapha.

Quebec bike riders can now ride through a red light on the walk signal after coming to a full stop and yielding to pedestrians, and don’t have to signal for a stop, which no one usually does anyway.

After two years of Vision Zero, Toronto bike and pedestrian deaths are still not coming down.

Not surprisingly, traffic injuries and deaths has dropped by half at London’s Bank Junction after banning all traffic other than buses and bicycles.

Taking a page from soccer, British cops hand out yellow cards to warn riders of bicycling violations. Does getting two yellow cards mean you get tossed off your bike? And if you’re not successful enough, could you get relegated to a lower town?

A writer for the Guardian explains why she moved her family to a nearly carfree city in the Netherlands. As if any explanation is necessary.

An Aussie newspaper disabuses readers of their anti-bike misconceptions, pointing out that’s it’s legal to ride abreast and bicyclists are not obstructing traffic just because they’re not driving.

Shenzhen, China’s Qianhai business district will get its own elevated walking and biking pathway, similar to New York’s successful High Line Park.

 

Competitive Cycling

Good news for bike racing fans. Amgen has renewed its sponsorship of the Tour of California for another two years.

American Brent Bookwalter was back for yesterday’s time trial in the Tour of California, eleven years after he nearly lost his leg karate kicking a light pole.

The winner of the time trial was a local favorite who jumped into the leader’s jersey, but may not win the war.

A Sacramento TV station offers a glossary of bike terms for any wheel suckers who may be turning in for the first time.

In today’s nearly spoiler-free Giro report, the man in the pink leader’s jersey says he’ll keep attacking leading up to Tuesday’s time trial.

Britain’s Cyclist magazine says this is how you celebrate a win.

https://twitter.com/AmgenTOC/status/996537221564907520?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cyclist.co.uk%2Fnews%2F4762%2Fwatch-how-to-celebrate-a-victory-as-a-professional-cyclist

 

Finally…

Before you ride through an abandoned railroad tunnel, make sure it really is. Kiss your Dutch beer bike goodbye.

And happy 199th birthday to New York’s bicycling community. Scroll down after clicking the link.

No, further. Seriously, keep scrolling.

………

Ramadan mubarak!

Morning Links: Storm City Hall for safer streets on May 18th, and killer Kalamazoo driver convicted of murder

As the great prophet Howard Beale once said, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!”

And I’m willing to march on City Hall by myself if that’s what it takes.

I’ve spent the last several weeks trying, and failing, to get support from LA advocacy groups for a plan for bike riders and pedestrians to storm city hall on Bike to Work Day this month to demand safer streets.

While I understand their need for campaigns and strategic planning, too many people are dying right now. And too many city councilmembers are backing away from the promises we were made.

So if this isn’t the right time for action, when is?

As I struggled with my own anger over the recent rash of bicycling fatalities and fatal hit-and-runs, I kept coming back to the questions of if not me, then who? And if not now, when?

Do we wait until someone else dies? Or twenty more people?

Do we wait until the next road diet is cancelled by councilmembers caving to angry drivers and traffic safety deniers?

And when is the right time to demand demand safer streets? As the Chinese proverb famously says, the best time would have been 20 years ago.

The second best time is now.

It’s my intention to give the mayor and every member of the council a copy of Profiles in Courage and Do The Right Thing, and see if they get the message. If we can raise just $400 in the next week to cover the costs, I’ll do it.

Besides, we only need another $375, thanks to a donation from Douglas M to get things started.

But either way, I’m going to be there on May 18th, even if that means standing alone before the city council.

Because something needs to be done now.

I hope you’ll join me. And help spread the word, so we can get as many people as possible to show up that day.

And I hope you’ll consider making a contribution to help send a message to the council that it’s time to show a little courage and do the right thing.

Update: I’ve been reminded that the LA City Council doesn’t meet on Thursdays, so doing this on Bike to Work Day won’t work. 

The question is whether it’s better do storm city hall on Tuesday, May 15th after the Blessing of the Bicycles, Wednesday the 16th before the Ride of Silence, or Friday the 18th before Bike Night at Union Station.

So what works better for you? Let me know in the comments below.

Update 2: It looks like Friday, May 18th works for more people. So that’s the day we’re storming City Hall.

………

Guilty.

In a verdict that shouldn’t surprise anyone, the driver responsible for the Kalamazoo massacre has been convicted on five counts of second degree murder for killing five bike riders in a drug-driven 2016 crash, and injuring another four.

Charles Pickett Jr. was also convicted of five counts of causing death while driving under the influence, after allegedly popping a handful of pain pills before getting behind the wheel. In addition, he had meth in his system as well as alcohol at the time of the crash.

Pickett now faces a possible life sentence when he’s sentenced next month.

A well-deserved one.

Thanks to Adam Ginsberg for the heads-up.

………

This is the cost of traffic violence.

In a heartbreaking story, a writer looks at the devastating effects of a Texas hit-and-run.

Boston magazine offers an in-depth examination of the events leading up to the death of a brilliant surgeon when she was right hooked by a truck driver while riding to work. And the police investigation that went out of its way to blame the victim.

………

Local

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti joined with other mayors around the world to issue a Commitment to Green and Healthy Streets, envisioning “a future where walking, cycling, and shared transport are how the majority of citizens move around our cities.” However, as Streetsblog points out, it takes more than lip service to be a climate mayor. It will be very hard for LA to live up to that commitment as long as city councilmembers are free to cancel safety and Complete Streets projects to appease angry drivers.

Streetsblog examines the dangers faced by many bike riders on the streets that go well beyond traffic safety. Like the 14-year old bike rider gunned down in a quiet Azusa neighborhood yesterday.

 

State

The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) will relaunch their Go Human campaign throughout their six-county region for Bike Month.

Celebrate Bike Month with ten bike trails within ten miles of Morro Bay.

 

National

NACTO presents a nationwide study of bikeshare in the US; while docked bikes outnumber dockless bikes 56% to 44%, only 4% of the actual trips are taken by dockless bikeshare. Something that’s likely to change as dockless bikeshare matures in this country.

In an absolutely brilliant move — sarcasm intendedVista Outdoor responds to the recent boycott by bike retailers over the AR-15 rifles made by one of their subsidiaries by deciding to stop selling guns. And get those darn bike people off their backs by getting rid of their bicycling equipment divisions, as well.

You can now control your LED-lighted Lumos bike helmet with your Apple watch, assuming you have either one. Or buy them both at your friendly neighborhood Apple Store if you don’t.

NPR looks at the LaneSpotter app, which allows users to flag problems with bikeways in real time, like a WAZE for bike riders.

Building bamboo bikes in Oahu.

A Portland nonprofit intends to collect 1,000 bicycles in a single day to refurbish and donate to kids in need.

A Washington sheriff’s deputy says police have to actually observe a traffic violation, such as a violation of the three-foot passing law, in order to write a ticket. Unfortunately, the law is no different here in California.

A Seattle website says the ebike craze has become a verifiable movement in the city.

A Spokane WA bike commuter compares bicyclists to the NRA, and says some bike riders in the city are just jerks. Bicyclists are human, some humans are jerks. Therefore, some bicyclists will inevitably be jerks. Just like some drivers and pedestrians. 

Forget protein bars. Austin TX bike riders get free tacos for breakfast on Bike to Work Day.

Houston residents are calling for changes after two people are killed in the same spot while riding bikes in the last two years; a crowdfunding campaign raised $15,000 to send the latest victim’s body back to India.

Evanston IL city aldermen reject a call to remove a parking-protected bike lane, after a female alderman — alderperson? — calls them “an absolute disaster at rush hour.”

Speaking of Evanston, a local man discovers how it feels when his bike has a starring role in a police chase.

New York council members call on the mayor to stop the city’s ridiculous ebike ban, and talk with the food delivery riders who use them to develop new rules.

 

International

Cycling Industry News considers why the bike industry has such a hard time catching counterfeiters. Which is why you should always buy from a reputable source; any deal that seems too good to be true probably is.

An Ottawa TV station says people are taking to bicycles and ebikes to fight rising gas prices.

Cambridge, England council candidates consider calls to ban parents from driving their kids to school. Unlike the US, where schools attempt to ban kids from biking or walking to class.

One more to add to your bike bucket list — Spain’s sun-soaked Mallorca island.

Tel Aviv, Israel opens the first velodrome in the Middle East.

Around 50 Brisbane, Australia bicyclists stage a die-in to call for better bike safety, tying up traffic during the morning rush hour. While the technique can be effective, we don’t win any friends by inconveniencing people just trying to get to work.

 

Finally…

Ten ways to tell others on the road that an angel just got its wings. Call it a secure dockless bikeshare parking spot.

And the Foos are some of us, too.

Most of them, anyway.

 

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