Tag Archive for bus lanes

Metro BRT could remove Eagle Rock bike lanes, reaction to Wicksted sentence, and carmakers really are trying to kill us

Metro will host a second virtual meeting on Saturday to discuss alternatives for a proposed North Hollywood to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit line.

Options include removing bike lanes on Colorado Blvd, while many bike advocates call for improving them and removing a traffic lane, instead.

The project has brought Eagle Rock NIMBYs out in force, who bizarrely insist that no one would ever take the bus to shop or dine at local businesses.

Meanwhile, Metro makes the unintended case for why bikes belong in their own lane next to, rather than in, busways.

………

Earlier this week, we mentioned the plea agreement that gave Sandra Marie Wicksted just 16 years behind bars for intentionally running down Leslie Pray, killing the Claremont woman as she was riding her bike, and attempting to kill two other bike riders.

A couple of comments to that story are worth elevating and sharing here.

It’s hard to call 16 years in state prison a slap on the wrist. But this one feels wrong for a couple reasons.

If Wicksted really was suffering from psychiatric problems, she need treatment, not jail; too often we warehouse the mentally ill in jail, which doesn’t benefit anyone.

If not, a 16-year sentence for what amounts to first degree murder is ridiculously low. She could easily be out in half that time, or possibly less under current circumstances.

Either way, it’s yet another example of the outgoing DA’s repeated failure to take traffic crimes seriously.

Let alone do the right thing.

………

Yes, carmakers really are trying to kill you.

………

GCN thinks you need to improve your bike handling skills.

………

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

No bias here. A London paper celebrates drivers surreptitiously removing bollards from bike lanes, describing it as fighting back against the above mentioned mythical war on cars.

Meanwhile, another British tabloid is up in arms over Prime Minister Boris Johnson approving the equivalent of $206 million for new bikeways to satisfy “the public’s strong appetite for greener and more active travel.”

………

Local

Whittier will install a memorial mural to honor a local man who rode his bicycle across country twice to lobby Congress to honor Vietnam vets.

 

State

A Bakersfield woman faces up to 40 years behind bars after she was convicted of murdering a man who tried to reclaim his bike after she had stolen it.

Bay Area officials discuss how to get more people walking and biking.

Sonoma County residents voted to extend a quarter-cent sales tax intended to fund road improvements, bike paths, transit and transportation projects.

 

National

Salsa is recalling some of their Cutthroat bicycles due to a possible fork failure; the recall affects 600 bikes sold in the US between September of last year and September this year, as well as another 100 sold in Canada.

A 49-year old mother of two remains missing six months after she reportedly rode her bike away from her Southern Colorado home last Mother’s Day, despite massive search efforts.

After a Kansas appeals court threw out his original two-year sentence as too lenient, a driver convicted of using his car to murder a bike-riding man following an argument between the two was resentenced to a still too low ten years and a month behind bars.

Tennessee officials are struggling to identify a man who was killed in a collision while riding his bicycle on Wednesday. One more tragic reminder to always carry some form of ID with you that’s not likely to be stolen after a crash.

A New York delivery person was killed when he was right hooked by the driver of a massive beer truck, while apparently riding an e-scooter in what passes for a protected bike lane. So naturally, the NYPD blamed the victim.

New York’s Vespertine NYC creates fashionable, reflective bikewear designed to keep you safe without looking like a clown.

A South Carolina man lost a whopping 460 pounds after starting a diet and getting on his bike less than two years earlier. Read it on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you.

 

International

Cyclist says ebikes are changing the world.

An Aussie paper explains how an Argentine bicyclist ended up covered with literally thousands of cactus quills.

They’re not looking forward to any Viking biking in Thunder Bay, Ontario; the city on the shore of Lake Superior plans to shut down all its bike lanes for the winter on Sunday, and open them up for parking.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. A Toronto-area man got a slap on the wrist for jumping the curb and killing a woman as she rode her bike on the sidewalk, while he was allegedly street racing with another driver who fled the scene; the judge said he hoped the paltry 26-month sentence would serve as a deterrent. Not bloody likely. 

Paris’ plan to remake itself into a 15-minute city — where everything you need is within a 15-minute walk, bike or transit ride — is spreading worldwide and becoming the new utopia for urban planners. Let’s hope it spreads to Los Angeles, too. 

Barcelona tries to one-up Paris in the walk and bikeability department, announcing plans to convert every third street in the city center to pedestrian-first zones.

 

Competitive Cycling

Nineteen-year old former junior world road race champ Quinn Simmons’ suspension for using a dark-skinned emoji in a tweet has been lifted; the apparently chastened American rider will return to his Trek-Segafredo team for next season.

 

Finally…

Move to the Ozarks for ten grand and a new bike. That feeling when your $20,000 custom bike is trashed by a careless driver less than a mile into your first ride.

And nothing like getting dropped by a 12-year old girl with a pro contract and her own YouTube channel.

………

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

LA traffic collisions — and bike deaths — drop dramatically, our debt to Alex Trebek, and Culver City bus/bike lanes

No surprise here.

Traffic collisions dropped nearly 42% in Los Angeles during the pandemic lockdown earlier this year, as many drivers stayed home and off the roads.

What’s more surprising is that’s also reflected in the dramatic drop in bicycling deaths in LA County this year, at less than half of last year’s total — 14 so far this year, compared to 34 for all of last year.

Now if we could just keep it that way, as traffic creeps back up to pre-pandemic levels.

Today’s photo comes courtesy of David Drexler, combining two of my favorite things — bikes and coffee.

………

Your periodic reminder that some people can live forever, and still be gone too soon.

And this.

………

Here’s your chance to weigh in on proposed bus/bike lanes in Culver City, which is rapidly lapping Los Angeles in the race for safe streets.

Then again, it’s not hard to lap someone who never left the starting gate.

………

This is who we share the roads with.

There’s a special place in hell for anyone who could just drive off and leave an 87-year old man to die in the street.

And hopefully, a special place behind bars, for a very long time.

Meanwhile, if they really want to put a dent in street racing, make the impound permanent.

………

John McBrearty forwards this short video about his bike club’s annual bike build program for kids at the YMCA.

While the video is a couple years old, he assures me it’s taking place once again this year if you want to get involved.

………

We can thank Bart Anderson for forwarding this YouTube version of last month’s BBC report on Europe’s bike boom, which wasn’t previously viewable in the US.

………

The Bike League is looking for speakers for their upcoming virtual Bike Summit.

………

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

Monterey bike riders can breathe a little easier tonight, after the local DA announced a man who threw acid on a bike rider 20 years ago will stay in a mental hospital for the foreseeable future.

A Nevada man is being held on $120,000 bail for allegedly shooting a 14-year girl with a BB gun as she was riding her bike; he faces charges of conspiring to commit child abuse and assault with a deadly weapon.

………

Local

Looks like Metro is finally getting it, after moving to open up highway funds so local communities can use the money for bike, pedestrian and transit projects, instead.

The Los Angeles Business Journal examines how LA bike shops are struggling to keep up with increased demand due to the bike boom.

A man faces charges for pepper spraying and robbing someone on the beachfront bike path in Santa Monica at 1:37 in the morning; a second suspect was released to…wait for it…his mommy.

Long Beach receives a $275,000 state grant for bicycle and pedestrian safety education programs.

Streets for All is hosting a virtual happy hour with the founders of CicLAvia tomorrow.

 

State

Fontana police are looking for the driver who fled the scene after rear-ending a bike rider last week.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is keeping up the fight for a safer Market Street after the city tries cutting corners by cancelling plans for a raised bike lane.

 

National

Bicycling considers the best bike trailers to ride with your kids. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the Bicycling site blocks you out.

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager offers advice on how to overcome common bike riding fears, like descending wet roads and riding in traffic. Once again, you can read it on Yahoo

A Seattle-area man committed suicide just hours before a jury convicted him of raping and murdering a young woman nearly 50 years ago as she was riding her bike. Speaking of a special place in hell, he’s probably already roasting. 

Remarkably, a Las Vegas driver remained at the scene following a high speed crash that took the life of a man riding his bike, despite some outstanding arrest warrants. Then again, if he’d been arrested sooner, the victim might still be with us.

 

International

The BBC looks at the technological advances in the never-ending war against bike thieves.

Good news for ebike riders, as a new Dutch study shows ebikes are no more dangerous than other bikes. Although another study blames ebikes for the rise in traffic deaths among elderly riders.

Madrid’s El Pais maps out how cities around the world are responding to the coronavirus crisis by expanding their bike networks. Note that LA was not included, despite its grand total of zero popup bike lanes.

Ebikes are encouraging Kiwis to get off the couch and start exercising again.

 

Finally…

It’s one thing to ride a bike cross-country; another to make the trip on a Penny Farthing. If you leave the parking meters next to the curb after installing a protected bike lane, where the hell do they think people will park?

And we’re finally training someone to fill in and write these posts when I can’t.

 

………

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

LADOT wants input on deadly Lincoln Blvd, Koretz recall effort announced, and wear your damn golf helmet

LADOT wants your input on a proposal to install rush hour bus lanes and other safety improvements on deadly Lincoln Blvd south of the Santa Monica border, which could be used for parking and biking at other hours.

Since this one is in Councilmember Mike Bonin’s district, it might actually happen; he’s one of the few friends traffic safety advocates have left on the city council.

Although maybe we’d be better served by a shared bus and bike lane during rush hour that converts to a floating bike lane during off hours.

Thanks to Kent Strumpell for the heads-up.

………

Anger is boiling over in LA’s fifth council district, as a new effort to recall Paul Koretz gets underway.

If I still lived in the district I called home for a quarter of a century, I’d be the first to sign the petition.

The only real question is what took so long?

………

Maybe they should wear helmets.

A new survey says you’re more likely to get hurt playing golf than you are riding a bike. (Scroll down if the story doesn’t load correctly.)

Unless, like me, you wouldn’t be caught dead on a golf course.

………

When is a bike lane not a bike lane?

When it’s filled with patrol cars from cops grabbing lunch.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the tip.

………

Bike Angeles takes you riding on Latigo Canyon, calling it the most essential climb in the Santa Monica Mountains.

Thanks to Zachary Rynew for the heads-up.

………

The only thing worse than a near miss is a pass that doesn’t.

Miss, that is.

………

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

Life is cheap in the UK, where a road raging English farmer walked without a single day behind bars for intentionally slamming into a bike rider in reverse.

No bias here. British business owners insist that popup bike lanes are a pain in the backside and an accident waiting to happen.

………

Local

London and Long Beach based Zwift is now a one billion dollar company.

The replacement for the Gerald Desmond Bridge in the Port of Long Beach is set to open next month, including the long awaited Mark Bixby bike lanes.

 

State

San Jose develops an innovative plan to improve safety on a pair of three lane one-way streets by installing a frontage lane to keep cars out of a curb protected bike lane, along with protected intersections.

Sunnyvale is dropping the speed limit on El Camino Real to 35 mph to match the speed in other nearby cities, while considering a plan to add bike lanes.

The US Bicycling Hall of Fame in Davis unveils this year’s inductees.

 

National

Next City calls freight delivery the forgotten part of Vision Zero, saying streets need to be designed so delivery vehicles can operate safely in mixed traffic. Or better yet, replace delivery trucks and vans with more efficient ebikes. Although in Los Angeles, it’s Vision Zero itself that’s been forgotten.

Spin looks at the success of Slow Streets programs around the US.

Seattle’s Cascade Bicycle Club maps out routes into the city from West SeattleSomething we could use here in LA to navigate the city’s fractured bikeways.

Bike riders are discovering the joys of biking on gravel in Texas, where there’s lots of it.

Busted for Biking While Black at just ten years old. Michelle Obama — yes, that Michelle Obama — tells the story of how her own brother was stopped by a pair of Chicago cops who refused to believe the bike he was riding belonged him.

Speaking of Chicago, the police are finally releasing bicycles that were seized during the Black Lives Matter protests earlier this year. But not in the same condition they were in when they seized.

Bike trails to check out the fall foliage for your next trip to the Big Apple.

The brother of a Brooklyn assistant DA who was killed in a collision while riding her bike last week says the city failed her, and all new bike riders.

Nice story about a writer’s friendship with a noted Florida chef, and tracking down the bespoke bike he passed along. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if you’re blocked out by Bicycling’s paywall.

 

International

Axios traces the timeline of the coronavirus bike boom, saying it remains to be seen if it’s a long-term trend that will outlive the virus itself.

Cycling News offers advice on how to safely lock-up your bike to help ensure it’s still there when you get back.

Cycling Weekly says it’s time to up your sock game.

A 155-year old British sports publication talks with American mom Denise Mueller-Korenek, the world’s fastest assisted bicyclist, clocked at just this side of an incredible 184 mph.

A woman in the UK credits the Busby app with saving her life when she was knocked unconscious after a driver forced her bike off the road.

Dutch bikemaker Van Moof raises $40 million to further expand worldwide, as it sets its sites on an IPO.

Turkey wants to integrate bicycles into the country’s transportation network.

 

Competitive Cycling

Yesterday’s stage of the Tour de France ended with a nail-biting attack on the on the Col de la Loze.

Team USA profiles Sepp Kuss as he works to keep Slovenian cyclist Primož Roglič in yellow.

Fans aren’t exactly social distancing at the Tour, as fellow Slovenian Tadej Pogačar had to push a fan out of the way as he neared the summit.

The only Black bike rider in this year’s Tour says he hasn’t seen a lot of solidarity and support on the pro tour.

Somehow, cycling is never far from doping in the news, as the leaders of a massive blood doping ring involving pro cyclists and Nordic athletes went on trial yesterday.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you design a bike that shouldn’t work, yet somehow it does. Still shaving his legs after 29 years and 1,450 twin blade cartridges.

And who doesn’t want to see a bunny on a bicycle?

Thanks to Megan Lynch for this one.

………

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

Bonin promises actual implementation, biking & walking mean happy commuters, and expensive cars mean bigger jerks

This could be good news, for a change.

The LA City Council’s Transportation Committee approved a motion calling on LADOT to come up with a plan to implement the city’s Green New Deal and the mayor’s recent Climate Directive.

In addition to calling for a 30% improvement in bus speeds, it calls for the development of active transportation corridors for walking, bicycling and micromobility, with “at least one major regional project and one neighborhood-oriented network per year.”

It now goes before the full council, and if approved, will require LADOT to respond with an implementation plan this July.

So what we basically have is a motion for a plan.

And as we’ve learned the hard way, Los Angeles is very good at coming up with plans, but not so good at actually putting them on the pavement.

Like the 2010 bike plan. Or the more recent halfhearted non-embrace of Vision Zero.

Perhaps sensing the growing frustration, Transportation Chair Mike Bonin had this to say.

Let’s hope he means it.

………

In what may be one of the most telling surveys ever, a Utah university finds that, given the choice, three-quarters of drivers and car passengers would rather teleport to work, along with two-thirds of transit riders.

But only 35 percent of bike riders and 28 percent of people who walk to work concurred. Which tells you that the overwhelming majority of people who walk or bike to work actually like it.

As opposed to the overwhelming majority of people stuck in traffic who don’t.

………

Once again, science confirms what most of us have already figured out.

The more expensive a driver’s car is, the more likely he or she is to act like an entitled jerk behind the wheel.

………

Not only did a driver in Lincoln CA fail to stop after crashing into a man on a bike, he kept going for another quarter mile with the badly injured victim lodged on the roof of his SUV.

According to The Sacramento Bee, the 85-year old driver said he didn’t know he’d even hit anyone.

Which seems a little odd, given the crumpled hood and shattered windshield directly in front of his steering wheel.

………

A San Diego TV station tells the tale of how nine-year old Connor Stitt of San Marcos rocketed to internet fame when ESPN featured a video of his arial acrobatics.

We showed the clip back in December, but it’s worth seeing again.

And again.

………

Presenting the world’s lightest balance bike, for all those three and four-year old weight weenies in your life.

………

Local

The 13-mile Park to Playa Trail connecting Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area to Playa del Rey is nearly complete; all that’s missing is a soon-to-be-built bridge allowing people and small animals to cross busy La Cienega Blvd.

Curbed quizzes LA council candidates on the bike issues currently facing the city, including housing, homelessness and cars.

More on the near-fatal crash that sent renowned LA chef Walter Manzke of Republique fame to the ER with several broken bones; he was getting out of his car near his upcoming new bistro Bicyclette when he was run down by the driver, who stopped, for a change.

Bike the Vote LA endorses Trisha Keane in Pasadena’s 2nd Council District, while Streets For All reminds us they endorsed Sarah Kate Levy in CD4 and Loraine Lundquist in CD12. I cast my vote for SKL yesterday, in case you’re wondering. And it was so much fun, I’m thinking about going back and doing it again tomorrow. 

 

State

Pink Bike raves about a mountain biker’s perfectly sculpted jumps on a California trail. Call me crazy, but a split scrotum does not suggest a successful landing in my book.

A reminder to never leave your bike on a car rack. A would be Seal Beach bike thief was interrupted by the owner as he tried to make off with a $3,500 bicycle.

An Oceanside bike rider was severely injured when he was struck by an SUV driver after allegedly running a stop light.

A San Diego man is suing the city, claiming its new pump track is too dangerous because it allows bike riders and skateboarders to use it at the same time — even though the injuries he’s claiming came in a “brutal attack” by a boarder, rather than a crash.

Palo Alto is resuming work on building a network of bike boulevards, which was halted two years ago because some residents couldn’t figure out how a roundabout works.

No bias here. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, if you’re not white, male and earn $250,000, the city’s bike lanes aren’t for you. Except, of course, for the 75% of regular bike lane users who earn less than that, and the 33% that are female. Or who don’t otherwise fit with their highly skewed premise, based on notoriously unreliable census data.

A Bay Area woman got drunk, and apparently decided driving in the new barrier protected bike lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge was the perfect way to bypass all that car traffic in the other lanes.

 

National

A writer for Gear Patrol explains why good bikes are so expensive. Except there are a lot of good bikes out there that aren’t.

Meanwhile, the apparently unrelated Gear Junkie offers tips on how to build up your own mountain bike.

A bike-riding Oregon teenager was very lucky to escape with just minor injuries when he was struck by a driver doing 55 mph.

A New Mexico City councilor doesn’t like the census, early childhood education, the state’s red flag law or the Democratic primary. But he does like bike lanes, so he can’t be all bad.

An eleven-year old South Dakota boy has ridden his bike to school every day for six years — nearly 1,000 days in a row, rain or shine. Or snow.

Kindhearted Kansas business owners gave a new top-of-the-line gravel bike to a woman battling colorectal cancer.

Got to give him points for persistence. A Brooklyn bike thief broke through the roof of a building to steal a bike, then walked it out the front door.

Anti-safety vigilantes are tying yellow ribbons around trees on New York’s Staten Island to warn drivers about speed enforcement cameras.

 

International

A British ebike rider faces charges for killing a pedestrian by plowing into her at 30 mph — ten miles faster than legally allowed.

Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport is testing a system to electronically slow the fastest pedelec bikes down to the speed of regular bikes. Now try it on cars, please.

A Berlin firm is hosting the first-ever virtual world bicycle conference.

Mumbai is working to become bike-friendlier with bike mayors for each of the city’s 24 districts, along with two junior bike mayors. Which is about 26 more than you’ll find in Los Angeles.

An Australian city votes to spend $2 million to rip out part of an $8 million protected bike lane network that was only finished two year ago, claiming it’s causing too much traffic congestion. No, it’s all those cars causing that traffic; take more of those off the road and the congestion goes away.

 

Competitive Cycling

Four American women are working together to win three spots in the mountain biking events at the Tokyo Olympics.

 

Finally…

If you’re riding your bike with a stolen handgun, a sock full of meth, ten fake or stolen IDs, a criminal record and an outstanding warrant, maybe try riding a little closer to the curb. Ramming your bike into a police car is not likely to hurt it — or help you get away.

And you only wish this was your commute.

%d bloggers like this: