Tag Archive for buffered bike lanes

CicLAvia and World Naked Bike Ride this Sunday, and ruining a good buffered bike lane with plastic posts

Just 194 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 


Don’t forget Sunday’s CicLAvia on Western Ave in South LA, where you’ll find the good folks from Bike Talk and KPFK hosting a booth at the Western/Florence Hub.

Or if CicLAvia seems a little too formal for your last, the Los Angeles edition of the World Naked Bike Ride rolls tomorrow. Tip: Bring lots of sunscreen. And a few disinfectant wipes if you’re using a bikeshare bike.


Evidently, some people just don’t like separated bike lanes.

Or what Los Angeles insists on calling “protected,” even though the usual flimsy plastic car-ticklers wouldn’t stop a Yugo, if you could even get one running.

That was driven home in a new post by Cycling Savvy’s Keri Caffrey.

She explains how she was never a fan of bike lanes. Until moving to California, that is, when she got to experience her first wide buffered bike lane.

But some people insist on ruining those “good enough” buffered lanes by adding little white plastic bendy posts and other assorted permeable and semi-permeable barriers.

In her opinion, anyway.

Imagine my horror at seeing a movement to convert these bike lanes to “separated” bikeways by adding barriers such as flex posts, bollards, curbs, and a host of other innovations.

I get the desire to feel protected from cars, but at what cost? First of all, “feel protected” is all you get. Posts and curbs will not stop a moving car. They will, however, cause a bicyclist to crash. This is a known hazard which causes actual casualties, including serious injuries. Yet, these crashes don’t show up in national crash data, because it counts bicycle crashes only if they involve a moving motor vehicle.

She also takes issue with the stat up there on the right from the Federal Highway Administration.

The research behind the FHWA’s claim didn’t include junctions, only mid-block segments.

The only relevant crash type is a mid-block overtaking crash, around 5% of total crashes for all roads, including ones with no bike lane. The majority of overtaking crashes are actually sideswipes in narrow lanes (the motorist misjudges the space). We have a robust dataset from Mighk Wilson’s crash analysis in Orlando. In it, overtaking crashes on streets with bike lanes were 1.5% of crashes. The majority of bike lanes in the area are narrow and non-buffered. Paul Schimek’s study in Boston came to a similar conclusion.

I get what Caffrey is saying. And it’s worth reading to get a different perspective from what we usually share here.

My personal take is that separated bike lanes aren’t for confident bike riders like her who are comfortable riding nearly anywhere. They’re for the people who would like to ride, or ride more, but are afraid to mix it up with the people in the big dangerous machines.

Although calling them protected does a disservice to everyone by overpromising on safety.


Any kind of separation or buffer might have helped those Texas bicyclists who were run down by a drunk driver in a crash caught on bike cam earlier this week.

The driver who was allegedly three sheets to the wind at more than three times the legal blood alcohol limit has been identified as an American Airlines cargo worker.

Which could explain why your bags always seem to get lost or crushed beyond all recognition.

Thirty-one-year old Benjamin Hylander has been booked on two counts of intoxication assault with a vehicle causing serious bodily injury, accident involving injury, and driving while intoxicated with a BAC greater than 0.15.

Meanwhile, the victim shown getting run over by Hylander’s SUV after the initial impact, retired physician Tom Geppert, credits his bicycle with saving his life. And allowing him to walk away — if that’s the word for it — with “just” a concussion, injured left hamstring, a fractured rib and a severe laceration.

The other victim, Deborah Eads, suffered a severe laceration as well.

We can only be grateful it wasn’t much worse.

Maybe someday, carmakers will be required to use already-existing technology to ensure intoxicated people can’t get behind the wheel.

And can’t go anywhere if they do.


It’s now 182 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And three full years since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.


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

An English town has waived fines for bicyclists targeted by “cowboy” traffic wardens who wrote them up for breaking a nonexistent ban on biking through the city center.



Streetsblog’s Joe Linton takes a look at the new $11.2 million 1.4-mile Pacoima Wash multi-use path, expected to open this fall.

Santa Clarita has begun work on the new Bouquet Canyon shared-use pathway.

LAist offers a reminder that Caltrans needs your input on a proposed protected bike lane on PCH through Long Beach.

Long Beach hosts the city’s 12th Annual Kiddical Mass bike ride this Sunday.



No news is good news, right?



Yes, you can go bikepacking on an ebike.

Congress is considering the Domestic Bicycle Production Act, which would use a combination of tariffs and incentives to reshore American bike manufacturing.

Streetsblog says there’s a pedestrian death and injury crisis in New York City this year. Unlike Los Angeles, where there’s always a pedestrian death and injury crisis.

Tragic news from Michigan, where an 83-year old Florida man on a cross-country bike ride was killed when he was rear-ended by driver, who was allegedly distracted for some undisclosed reason.



Cycling Electric makes the case for why ebikes are the best vehicles for the environment.

Road.cc offers tips on how to avoid getting scammed buying a used bike on Facebook Marketplace.

Momentum recommends a new bike route that “glides along rainforests and epic beaches” on the west coast of Canada’s Vancouver Island.

A community group in Glasgow, Scotland has launched bikeshare service using refurbished bicycles, allowing anyone to rent a bike for free, or purchase one for whatever they can afford.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Scottish man is marking his 90th birthday by taking part in a 460-mile fundraising ride.

Not all the news from Scotland is good, however, as a 17-year old boy faces a murder charge for killing another 17-year old boy as he rode an ebike.

Country star Blake Shelton is one of us, as he posts a picture of himself biking back to his hotel in Italy after drinking too much for his birthday.

An Aussie architecture site asks if ebikes and e-scooters could be the answer to the country’s affordable housing crisis, since removing a single car from a household could cover the full cost of a $300,000 mortgage.


Competitive Cycling

Road.cc takes a look at what all the best teams will be riding in the Tour de France this year.

The Visma-Lease a Bike cycling team unveiled their line-up for next month’s Tour de France, headlined by two-time winner Jonas Vingegaard and former points winner and three-time world champ Wout van Aert.

British two-time Olympic track champ Katie Archibald is out of next month’s Paris Games, after breaking her leg in two places tripping on a garden step.

A Palestinian paracycling team is working to keep the dream of competing in the Paris Paralympics alive for cyclists in Gaza.



That feeling when a drivers prefer a genuine horse’s ass to a butt on a bike seat. And when your new e-foldie comes with a name that reminds you size doesn’t matter, except when it does.


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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Strava ranks LA 9th for bike commuting, ActiveSGV named nonprofit of the year, and LA rips out Winnetka buffers

Just 246 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’re now up to 1,128 signatures, so let’s keep it going! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until the mayor agrees to meet with us! 


We’re back!

Kind of, anyway.

It’s been a rough ten days, but I’m finally doing a little better after my unplanned visit to the ER. I’m still struggling with pain and a loss of mobility, but at least I can lift my arm again and hold my laptop without too much discomfort. 

I’ll try to keep bringing you the all latest bike news every day, but no promises until I can put this damn thing behind me.

And my apologies to everyone who sent me something while I was out last week. I’m just too worn out after writing this to go back and see who sent what, so please just accept my thanks, and I’ll try to do better going forward.  

Meanwhile, my adventure cycling, former Iditarod-mushing brother has made it to the Arkansas River on his cross-country bike tour, after riding out Saturday’s Oklahoma tornadoes in a cement restroom in a deserted roadside campground. 


A new Strava report shows Los Angeles is a surprising ninth on a list of the top ten bike commuting cities in the US, behind Boston and above Denver.

We also have the longest average commuting distance of any of the cities on the list, at a whopping 9.5 miles per commute. Which suggests that people are actually replacing their lengthy car trips with their bikes.

It’s also worth remembering that Strava only tracks people who have the app installed on their phones, and misses a lot of casual and low-income riders. Which means LA probably has even more bike commuters than what shows up in their stats.

Just imagine what that could look like if we actually had safe streets to ride on.

Here’s the full list, courtesy of Momentum Magazine.

Riding the Green Wave: Top 10 Commuting Cities
  1. Portland, OR: Leading the charge with 36% of cyclists choosing the green commute.
  2. Chicago, IL: A close second at 37%, boasting efficient and compact commutes.
  3. Seattle, WA: Rain or shine, 35% of Seattle’s cyclists opt for pedal power.
  4. Washington, DC: The nation’s capital follows closely with 34% of cyclists commuting.
  5. New York, NY: The Big Apple’s cyclists alone have saved over 2.3 million kilograms of carbon.
  6. San Francisco Bay Area, CA: Sharing the same 36% commute rate as New York, the Bay Area stands tall.
  7. Minneapolis-St. Paul, MI: A robust 32% of cyclists in this region choose green commutes.
  8. Boston, MA: Boston boasts a 33% commute rate among its cyclists.
  9. Los Angeles, CA: Surprising many, LA cyclists average a significant 9.5 miles per commute.
  10. Denver, CO: With a 33% commute rate, the Mile High City is reaching new heights in sustainability.


Hats off to ActiveSGV, aka Active San Gabriel Valley, named 2024 California Nonprofit of the Year for District 49 by Assemblymember Mike Fong.


Good question.



It’s now 131 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 34 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.


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

A Singapore crash devolves into an ugly racist road rage incident, after a bike rider and a driver argue over who hit who in a crosswalk, before attacking the other’s ethnicity.



I wouldn’t plan on riding Topanga Canyon above PCH anytime soon, after the recent rains caused a landslide that may not be cleared until fall.

Auto-centric WeHoVille calls on West Hollywood city leaders to share the pain of local residents whose parking spaces could be displaced by new bike lanes by giving up their own parking privileges.

Speaking of WeHo, the LA County Sheriff’s Department will conduct a bicycle and pedestrian traffic safety operation on Wednesday, ticketing anyone who commits a traffic violation that could put either group at risk, regardless of who does it. As usual, ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits, so you’re not the one who gets written up.



The San Diego Union-Tribune reports on Calbike’s recent 2024 California Bicycle Summit, with advocates calling for speed cams, speed limiters on city-owned vehicles, and revising state law to allow for lower speed limits; Streetsblog’s Melanie Curry says there were just too many sessions, conversations and highlights to cover them all.

A 13-year old Ramona boy flipped himself onto GoPro’s elite team of professional athletes by nailing a triple backflip on his BMX and sticking the landing.

Thousand Oaks wants your input on proposed new bike lanes and pedestrian improvements on Hillcrest Drive.

Santa Barbara County is hosting their 15th annual “CycleMAYnia” next month, offering over 40 community bike events under the theme of “Spring is here. Bikes are in bloom.”

A Santa Barbara op-ed calls for bigger and better bike lanes to accommodate bigger and better ebikes in the years to come.

Paso Robles officially opened a new bicycle pump track yesterday.

Sad news from Bakersfield, where a bike rider was killed by a semi-truck driver who drove off afterwards, before returning to the scene after a short time.

A Marin state Assembly Member has scaled back his proposal for a statewide ban on anyone under 16 riding a throttle-controlled ebike, instead proposing a pilot program just in Marin County.



A writer for Outside says he never thought he’d own a cruiser bike, until he discovered the joys of riding with his kids.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever just kept going after running down a ten-year old boy riding his bike in Reading, Massachusetts. Seriously, what the hell kind of person could just take off and leave a little kid bleeding in the street?

New York is on track for its deadliest year in a decade, with 60 people killed by traffic violence in the first quarter of 2024.

A weekly New Orleans social ride is providing bicycle therapy for the mostly Black participants, who celebrate the joyful, healing space on two wheels.

A Decatur, Georgia man was sentenced to life plus 15 years behind bars for fatally shooting his neighbor for leaving his bicycle in the hallway — and bizarrely claiming the victim was spying on him through his smoke detector. Apparently, the state plans to prop him up an extra decade and a half to finish his sentence. Unless he gets time off for good behavior, since dead men seldom cause trouble. 

Just days after a bike-riding Colombian man was killed by a driver fleeing from police in South LA, the same thing happened in Florida, where a 20-year old Pompano Beach man was killed while riding his bike home from work by a driver fleeing from deputies attempting to break up a street takeover.



That’s more like it. City leaders in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan have had a major change in attitude, now more focused on improving safety for people on bicycles than worrying about the cost.

You may be able to legally ride through a red light on the leading pedestrian interval signal in California now, but don’t try it in Ontario, Canada, where it remains against the law.

A blind man is offering a warning about a new curb-protected bike lane in Manchester, England, suggesting the floating bus stop and high curbs pose a risk to anyone with limited eyesight.

A UK coffee connoisseur conducts a deep dive into the “mysterious” relationship between bikes and coffee, calling it the original energy drink.

A new study from a British bike subscription service finds just 5% of women bike to work in the country, compared to 20% of men, with nine out of ten women citing concerns of getting hit by a driver, road rage and feeling vulnerable bicycling at night.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list, with the “stunning” La Seine à Vélo bicycle route following the banks of the Seine River through the Île-de-France and Normandy regions from Paris to the coast.


Competitive Cycling

Transgender cyclist Austin Killips discusses the heartbreak of confronting UCI’s ban on transgender women competing in elite women’s races, just days after the ride of her life in winning last year’s Tour of the Gila.

Rising 21-year old American pro Luke Lamperti is scheduled to make his Grand Tour debut at next month’s Giro d’Italia.

Spanish pro Carlos Rodríguez won the GC at this year’s Tour de Romandie.

Twenty-three-year old Dutch cyclist Frank van den Broek claimed his first career stage victory in the Tour of Türkiye, the country formerly known as Turkey, after the final stage was neutralized due to rain.

The Lidl-Trek women’s cycling team won the opening team time trial for Spain’s La Vuelta Femenina, followed by Visma-Lease a Bike and SD Worx-ProTime.

Velo says the revival of South Carolina’s Greenville Cycling Classic after eight years is proof that enthusiastic bike racing fans are still around.



When you’re carrying meth and weed on your bike, just put a damn taillight on it, already. That feeling when the new bike lane reminds people of a crime scene.

And no, this isn’t a photo.


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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Rumors are swirling that scofflaw cops may mean the death of 1st Street’s buffered bike lanes

I read and hear a lot of rumors.

Many don’t pan out after a little investigation; others can’t be verified one way or another.

Then there’s the ones reliable sources tell me have been confirmed, usually off the record, by people who should know. Like the one I recently heard about the relatively new buffered bike lanes in front of the LAPD headquarters on 1st Street in Downtown L.A.

It seems that certain scofflaws in blue can’t resist the temptation to park in the bike lane. Which is just as illegal for them as it is for anyone else.

And which puts cyclists at just as much risk on a dangerously busy street as when anyone else does it.

Of course, the obvious solution is to simply park somewhere else.

The not so obvious solution is to restripe the street to eliminate the bike lane. Or at least the buffer, turning what has been one of the city’s best bike lanes into just another door zone lane.

Guess which option seems to be gaining favor with police and officials at LADOT, run by former Hummer-driving Deputy Mayor Jaime de la Vega?

Of course, there is another possibility that no one seems to have considered. The buffer zone could be reconfigured as street parking — possibly even reserved for police vehicles — while maintaining the curbside lane for cyclists.

The result would be the parking police officers can’t seem to do without — except legally, this time.

Along with L.A.’s first protected bike lane, which could serve as a model for countless other areas around the city.

It makes perfect sense. Which is why it will probably never happen.

So be prepared to kiss your buffered bike lane goodbye.

Or so I’m told.


A must read two-part piece from Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman. The first is a moving and enlightening account of the aftermath of a bicycling collision in which both the driver and the victim go out of their way to help one another. The second, an examination of why South L.A cycling collisions too often go unreported — and the harm that can do.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog calls for donations to continue their vital work covering transportation in Los Angeles. And they need volunteers to help out with ARTCRANK on December 8th.


Congratulations to exceptional Santa Monica bike, transportation and planning wonk — and Streetsblog contributor — Gary Kavanagh as he receives a well-deserved nod as one of Planetizen’s Top Twitter Feeds for 2012; they might want to spell his name right, though.

Gary also offers his thoughts on the next steps for the Santa Monica bike movement.


Confessed doper and Lance compatriot Tyler Hamilton says he thinks 2012 Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins rode clean. Marianne Vos is named Velo’s International Cyclist of the Year. And Exergy is the latest company to drop its sponsorship of men’s pro cycling; their women’s team will not be affected.


UCLA sees a sudden spike in bike thefts. The mayor’s office gives itself high marks for its transportation efforts; although if the mayor really wants to make a big move in transportation he could endorse the GRID Project. New bike lanes adorn Santa Monica Blvd in East Hollywood. Flying Pigeon’s monthly Brewery Ride rolls this Saturday. More extensions are in store for the L.A. River bike path. The First Annual Santa Monica Family Bike Fest is scheduled for Saturday, December 8th; although it’s not actually an annual event until the second one. Burbank insists NBC Universal extend the L.A. River bike path as a condition for their planned expansion. Installing fenders for winter riding, and designing away the excuses for not riding for transportation.

Cycle tracks could be the answer for a dangerous San Diego road.  Maybe now that the doping scandal is behind us — as if — we can focus on the upcoming Amgen Tour of California, which reverses course for 2013. Respected bike-riding San Bernardino redevelopment lawyer Timothy J. Sabo died Wednesday after a long illness. An allegedly heavily intoxicated rider is injured in a Redding collision. Rancho Cordova police are investigating the case of a man found beaten to death next to his bike in front of a pet shop. It’s been a dangerous few days for cyclists in central California, as a 15-year old rider is killed in Fresno.

Do cheap Bicycle Shaped Objects from mass market stores discourage riders in the long run? Maybe your next bike could come with anti-lock brakes. New rechargeable, hard-to-steal bike lights. A volunteer explains how the Bike Library in my hometown really works. Bikes could be banned from a reconfigured Continental Divide Trail in southern Colorado. A Tulsa driver is charged in the hit-and-run death of a 71-year old bike rider; anyone who claims they thought they just hit an animal after killing a human being should have their sentence doubled. A Manhattan lawyer is being sued for violently jerking a cyclist off her bike. Not surprisingly, actress Kerri Russell looks pretty cute on a bike. DC cracks down on U-turning drivers after discovering they were involved in 11 of 14 bike collisions on a center bikeway. Cycling Nirvana offers advice on collision avoidance for new road riders. A Florida cyclist is the victim of a fatal double hit-and-run.

Young Canadian racers are about to get a boost. Sidewalk cycling is a symptom of the failure to provide safe and convenient bicycle routes. As you probably suspected, sitting on your couch is more dangerous than riding a bike. The latest in a string of projected bike lights is this Batman-style beacon that casts the image of a bike 20 feet ahead of a rider. A Liverpool cyclist was killed by a motorcyclist who was doing wheelies and riding 70 mph in a 30 mile zone. A Nigerian racer is nipped at the finish line after celebrating her victory a tad too early. Turns out staying upright on a bike is a lot more complicated than it seems. A Sydney bike thief is caught on video.

Finally, a cyclist tries — and fails — to jump a moving car coming directly at him.

Newly installed Fiji Way buffered bike lane already blocked by Friday

That didn’t take long.

Just two days after the new buffered bike lane on Fiji Way in Marina del Rey was completed, it was already blocked on Friday by a semi-trailer illegally parked in the bike lane — in an area that had been designated as a no-parking zone long before the lanes were even contemplated.

And close enough to the L.A. County Sheriff’s Marina station that they could undoubtedly see it just by looking their windows. Let alone drive right past it every time a squad car leaves the station.

So what good does it do to install bike lanes if authorities don’t care enough to keep people from parking in them?

If that’s the way it’s going to be, the county should have just saved the money. Because the only thing worse than no bike lane is one we can’t safely use.