Tag Archive for Bus Rapid Transit

Upcoming bike events, Metro approves plan for NoHo to Pasadena BRT, and NBA’s Klay Thompson is one of us

Let’s start with a look at a few upcoming events.

The raucous Belgian Waffle Ride rolls through the countryside around San Marcos this weekend, with races starting today.

The LACBC and Metro Bike will host a family friendly Earth Week ride through the NoHo Arts District tomorrow.

A South Pasadena paper looks forward to the opening ceremony for Sunday’s 626 Golden Streets Mission-to-Mission open streets event, which returns after a three year Covid-induced hiatus.

Wednesday is National Bike and Roll to School Day, so plan accordingly.

Mark your calendar for Thursday, May 12th, when Streets For All hosts a virtual happy hour with Culver City mayor and congressional candidate Dr. Daniel Lee.

………

Thanks to Robert Leone for forwarding news of several events in both Northern and Southern California.

He reports racing has resumed at San Diego’s open air velodrome.

San Jose’s Viva Calle SJ open streets event rolls on Sunday.

And San Jose’s Helllyer Park Velodrome is resuming Wednesday night racing next week.

………

The Metro board has approved plans for the North Hollywood to Pasadena bus rapid transit line.

The approved option, based on the community designed Beautiful Boulevard plan, calls for dedicated bus lanes, protected bike lanes, on-street parking, and a single car lane in each direction.

The 18-mile long route drew widespread community support, despite very vocal opposition accusing Metro of “trying to manufacture gridlock.”

Meanwhile, a writer for City Watch calls it an unnecessary boondoggle, while attacking the board and the Measure M sales tax funding the project, and accusing supporters of being “bought and paid for.”

In that case, I’d sure as hell like to know who is passing out those checks, because I’m still waiting for mine.

………

Golden State Warriors star Klay Thompson is one of us, riding his bike to play in the decisive game five against the Denver Nuggets.

………

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

No bias here. A piece originally written for — and firewalled by — the Denver Post takes a clearheaded look at bike law, and the rights and responsibilities of bike riders in the wake of Colorado’s adoption of the Idaho Stop Law. But frames it by saying the law is creating animosity between motorists and bicyclists.

A man in Edinburg, Scotland apparently took issue with a woman riding her bike on a shared use path, and pushed her into the river.

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

………

Local

The crowdfunding campaign to help send fallen cyclist and pastry chef Leonidas Accip Serech back home for burial in Guatemala, and benefit his brother and family, has now raised almost $17,000 of the $20,000 goal. Serech was riding to work with his brother when he was killed by a driver trying to escape another man in Koreatown.

Culver City News reposted a piece on bike safety written for State Farm Insurance, without crediting the source. And without bothering to use any paragraphs.

 

State 

Longtime transportation equity advocate and Antioch University professor Dr. Adonia Lugo has been appointed to a position on the California Transportation Commission, though she still needs confirmation by the state senate.

The Pacific Beach Planning Group recommends that San Diego continue plans to make the Slow Street on Diamond Street permanent, after the city cancelled an earlier effort after running into vocal opposition.

San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria says he’s committed to improving the city’s bike lane network, even when those projects face vocal opposition — despite the recent controversy that resulted in the removal of new advisory lanes in the Mira Mesa neighborhood, with the mayor going door-to-door to apologize.

A new documentary follows a Palo Alto ultracyclist as he rides 3,000 miles across the US in the Race Across America, aka RAAM, to raise money for cancer research.

Congratulations to Rich City Rides co-op founder Najari Smith on being named a 2022 Bike Champion of the Year for Contra Costa County. Couldn’t have happened to a more deserving and inspiring person. 

 

National

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is asking for comments on a proposed rating system for vehicle impacts on pedestrians. And by extension, bike riders. Let’s tell them that any vehicle that rates less than three on the five point scale should be banned from the roads. Starting with oversized pickups and SUVs with high, flat grills designed to kill.

A crowdfunding page for a 13-year old Utah boy killed by a hit-and-run driver has raised over $33,000 of the $36,000 goal in a single day; he was just one block from his home when he was killed.

Unbelievable. An Iowa man charged with killing a bike-riding woman while driving distracted walked when the judge dismissed the case, agreeing with the defense that there wasn’t enough evidence for a conviction.

Houston, Texas is continuing to improve the city’s disjointed bike network, with plans for new bike lanes to connect several existing segments.

The Boston Globe says the best way to visit Maine’s Acadia National Park is by bicycle, whether you’re an experienced rider or just a beginner. Then again, that’s true just for about every other national park, too. Hint: Stop the page as soon as it loads to get past the paper’s paywall. 

Streetsblog says the NYPD’s supposed crackdown on drivers who failed to yield to pedestrians is anything but that.

About damn time. A group of New York councilmembers are calling for the Department of Education to add bicycling to the curriculum, and teach bike safety in every school.

New York’s annual TD Five Boro Bike Tour returns to full strength this weekend, with 32,000 riders registered for the 40-mile bike tour through each of the city’s five boroughs.

 

International

A questionable new British study claims e-scooters are five times safer than riding a bicycle, and pose much less risk to pedestrians than assumed.

An English man was collateral damage in a road rage dispute between two drivers, one of whom has denied responsibility for his death in court.

Mail carriers in New Zealand will deliver the mail by foot or on a bicycle, after the entire fleet of electric mail buggies were taken off the road due to a maintenance issue.

 

Competitive Cycling

The popular Over The Hump mountain bike race series kicks things off on Tuesday at Lakeview Park at Irvine Lake, in Santiago, CA.

Finally some good news about Dutch pro Amy Pieters, who regained consciousness following four months in a medically induced coma, after suffering severe brain damage in a training crash; however, doctors are unsure how much of her previous abilities she’ll eventually recover.

  

Finally…

That feeling when a former pro cyclist, soldier, CEO, lawyer, author, academic, hostage responder, weapons instructor and Strava KOM king isn’t. If you lose an arm in a collision while riding your bike, just build a new one.

And before you get carried away celebrating your victory, make sure you really won.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Metro votes on NoHo to Pasadena BRT plan today, bike & ped bill passes senate committee, and gun-toting Sac trail driver

Let’s start with a quick reminder about today’s Metro Board meeting.

The board will give a final hearing for the North Hollywood to Pasadena bus rapid transit line, which includes plans for lane reductions, protected bike lanes and a more livable street on currently car-centric Colorado Blvd, based on the Beautiful Boulevard plan developed by Eagle Rock residents. .

Streets For All offers these tips for making a comment during the 10 am meeting.

  • Use these Talking Points put together by the Beautiful Boulevard Coalition (some are specific to Eagle Rock)
  • In order to make comments by phone, you will need to call in using the number and code above. When the item comes up, click #2 (pound-two) to request to comment.
  • You will only have 1 minute for your comment. (It may be helpful to write your comment down and read it aloud to maximize use of your comment time)
  • If you are watching online, please note that the video feed is delayed by 30 seconds and that you will need to mute your video stream when you speak to avoid background noise.

If you can’t call in, they recommend using this email tool from the Beautiful Boulevard coalition to submit your comments to the Metro Board.

I have another commitment, so I’m counting on you to call in for me.

Meanwhile, a writer for the Boulevard Sentinel suggests that only a small group of advocates support the plan, which he says received no opposition because opponents didn’t know about it.

Evidently, they somehow missed all those public meetings where it was discussed, along with the website promoting it.

But other than that, it was a total secret.

………

Glendale state Senator Anthony Portantino’s bill requiring cities to bake bike and pedestrian safety into their community plans is headed to the senate floor after passing both the Transportation and Governance and Finance committees.

SB 932 would force cities to take action to improve safety on the most dangerous corridors; otherwise, anyone injured there would have the right to sue.

Never mind that Los Angeles hasn’t updated its community plan since Ronald Reagan was in the White House.

………

Megan Lynch forwards a horrifying story from Sacramento, where a former San Diego County sheriff’s deputy has allegedly been brandishing a gun while threatening homeless people.

Rich Eaton, who now operates a business in the city, was named by victims in three police reports, in one case reportedly growling “I should put a bullet in the back of your head.”

And he apparently doesn’t let a little thing like a bike trail stop him.

The same victim claimed he saw Eaton brandishing a gun at another homeless man a few days earlier.

“Richard was in his vehicle on the bike trail at the top of the levee and I could see him pointing a gun out of the vehicle window,” the report says.

The other victim said Eaton pointed the gun directly at him as he tried confronting Eaton about driving on a path intended for bikes and pedestrians.

“I could see him holding the guns in his hand with the barrel sticking out the window pointing at me,” the second victim said. “He pulled the gun back and said ‘pussy.’”

Eaton is suing the city for failure to enforce its own laws by allowing homeless people to remain on his property, claiming significant damage and a loss in property value.

Even though the writer for Newsbreak says the value of the property has increased $2.3 million in just the last five years.

According to the story, police dropped the investigation into the incidents, at the discretion of the sergeant.

Maybe they could at least tell him to keep his car the hell off bike and pedestrian paths.

Correction: In the first reference to Rich Eaton, I somehow wrote his last name as Williams, for reasons that will forever escape me. Thanks to Andy Stow for the catch.

………

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

No bias here. The headline on this story from San Diego’s CBS8 isn’t the least bit misleading, suggesting that the city apologized to Rancho Peñasquitos residents for the new bike lanes on Azuaga Street, when the San Diego director of transportation actually apologized for a lack of effective outreach before they were installed. And yes, that was sarcasm.

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

Police in Charlotte, North Carolina announced a crackdown on aggressive young bike riders they accuse of wrecking havoc in the city by riding recklessly and endangering drivers and pedestrians; one is accused of punching a driver in the back of the head, and later shooting into his car, leaving the man paralyzed.

………

Local

This is the cost of traffic violence. Relatives of Monique Munoz, the  32-year-old woman killed by a 17-year old boy in West LA, who slammed into her car after running a red light at over 100 mph in his Lamborghini SUV, have settled a wrongful death lawsuit against his family for a whopping $18.8 million. Which barely seems like enough under the circumstances.

Los Angeles Magazine lists beach cruisers as one of the 60 ways the city has changed the world, placing them between The Beach Boys and breast implants; they were invented by in 1976 by a 21-year old mechanic in his dad’s bike shop. The bikes, that is, not The Beach Boys. Or the breast implants.

Beverly Hills is installing a network of green sharrows on South Santa Monica Boulevard, North Doheny Drive and South Beverly Drive. Apparently in an effort to thin the herd and help drivers improve their aim.

626 Golden Streets returns this weekend with five miles of carfree streets connecting the historic San Gabriel and South Pasadena Mission Districts with downtown Alhambra.

 

State 

Volunteers removed a half ton of overgrown weeds and dry brush from a La Jolla bike path.

The curator of a museum in San Diego’s University Height neighborhood says he doesn’t think it can survive plans for a parking protected bike lane and fewer parking spaces on Park Boulevard. Because evidently, people who ride bicycles never, ever visit museums. Especially not if they’re safer and easier to get to.

Caltrans will reduce PCH to a single lane between Deer Creek Road and Sycamore Canyon Road in Ventura County for road work today; bicyclists will be allowed to mix it up with cars in the single traffic lane, though you may have to wait for traffic moving in the other direction.

 

National

Is anyone really surprised that ebike sales are outpacing sales of electric cars in the US? Ebikes are booming, while sales of electric cars have been lagging. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. 

Forbes rates their picks for the best bikes to ride anywhere for all kinds of riders. And for once, I can’t argue with their choices.

Charge your ebike while you ride with a hardshell backpack with a built-in solar panel.

Once again, authorities have managed to keep a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Utah man with four previous DUI convictions faces charges for killing a 13 year old boy when he right hooked the boy’s bike, before fleeing the scene with the kid’s bike still jammed under his truck; police said they could smell the alcohol on his breath when he was arrested at his home later. He should have lost his license permanently after the second conviction.

A new Utah mountain bike trail is bringing glamping to bike touring, with a series of six fully furnished huts capable of housing up to 14 people strategically located along the 190-mile path.

Smart move. An Illinois teacher uses bicycles as a reward for good work and to keep her students attentive and motivated; she hopes to send each one home with a new bike at the end of the year.

NBC News correspondent Stephanie Gosk writes that she took up road cycling during the pandemic, until a violent face plant resulting from a New Jersey pothole took her down hard. But she insists she’s not going to let that stop her.

 

International

Two new high tech, retro styled bike headlamps are raising funds on Kickstarter.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. A British taxi driver walked without a single day behind bars for killing a bike rider after his lawyer argued that the victim’s lack of hi-viz and flashing lights made him hard to see — even though he had steady front and rear lights and reflectors on his bike.

An 18-year old Indian man has developed the country’s first artificial inteligence-powered bike counter, complete with AI-sensor camera and a machine learning-based algorithm

 

Competitive Cycling

The 13th Annual Redlands PossAbilities Para-cycle stage race rolled alongside the Redlands Classic last week, using the same courses for the four stage race; national paracycling time trial and road cycling champ national Owen Daniels dominated the series, finishing first in the paraplegic category.

  

Finally…

Now you can be the proud owner of Elliot’s milk crate-basket bicycle from E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, although you’ll have to supply your own homesick alien. Maybe once you become mayor, you should stop punching teenage constituents in the back of the head.

Just a suggestion.

And you know you’re a bicyclist when you see a picture of a young Ann-Margret, and stare at her bike.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

LA deputies harass Latino bike riders, paranoid anti-bike Eagle Rock screed, and Cedillo keeps Temple Street deadly

Call it biking while brown in LA County.

The Los Angeles Times released a major investigative story Thursday on the harassment Latinos face riding a bicycle Los Angeles County.

Something we’ve been warning about for over a decade now.

Both Los Angeles police and LA County sheriff’s deputies have long used the simplest pretexts to stop and search bike riders of color, often handcuffing the riders or placing them in the back of a patrol car while rifling through their belongings for what amounts to minor traffic infractions or fix-it tickets, such as riding without lights after dark.

In fact, that was one of the primary reasons the LA city council canceled the city’s mandatory bike licensing program over a decade ago.

But while the problem continues for both Black and Brown riders in the City of Angels, it’s apparently much worse outside the city where the sheriff’s department has jurisdiction.

Especially for Latino men.

A Los Angeles Times investigation found deputies search 85% of bike riders they stop even though they often have no reason to suspect they’ll find something illegal. Most bicyclists were held in the backseat of patrol cars while deputies rummaged through their belongings or checked for arrest warrants.

The Times’ analysis of more than 44,000 bike stops logged by the Sheriff’s Department since 2017 found that 7 of every 10 stops involve Latino cyclists, and bike riders in poorer communities with large nonwhite populations are stopped and searched far more often than those in more affluent, whiter parts of the county.

For all the stops and searches, deputies rarely catch criminals. During searches, they find illegal items just 8% of the time, The Times’ analysis shows. Weapons were seized just 164 times — less than half a percent of all searches.

And the stops can go far beyond embarrassment or inconvenience.

Some cyclists shrugged off the encounters as an inconvenience that comes with living in high-crime neighborhoods. Others felt deeply harassed, targeted because they fit the vague description of a crime suspect deputies claimed to be searching for, usually because they were the same race.

Being stopped was even more disruptive for some riders interviewed. One white bicyclist in Norwalk said he lost his job because he was two hours late to work after he was held in the backseat of a patrol car while deputies searched his belongings and questioned him about who in the neighborhood was dealing drugs and carrying guns. A Latino rider in East L.A. said deputies took him to jail after they found a pipe in a bag of recyclables he planned to redeem for cash. A Black rider said a deputy confronted him at gunpoint and ordered him to stop while he was riding home from Lueders Park in Compton and doesn’t understand why.

Sometimes the confrontations can turn deadly, as it did for Black bicyclist Dijon Kizzee in South LA last year, when he was fatally shot by deputies in what began as a traffic stop for riding salmon, a common practice in the area.

Seriously, take a few minutes to read the entire thing.

We’ll wait.

Because everyone deserves the right to feel safe on the streets, whether the risk comes from drivers or sheriff’s deputies.

And we’ll never get people out of the cars if a large segment of the population has to worry about getting stopped by cops just for who they are, or where they ride.

Meanwhile, the paper offers a behind-the-scenes look at how they uncovered the facts and reported the story.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

In a truly bizarre City Watch screed, a self-described Eastside community activist purports to speak for the Eagle Rock Chamber of Commerce in accusing Metro, two current and former LA councilmembers, a county supervisor and the former mayor of Glendale of conspiring with bike advocates to destroy businesses on Colorado Blvd, in order to claim business owner’s real estate development rights.

No, really.

Someplace along the line it became clear that there is a small coalition of players who are ramming the ‘road diet’ version of the Colorado Blvd piece of the Glendale to Pasadena BRT route. Politically, it’s the combination of Jose Huizar (until he was busted), Hilda Solis from the County Board of Supervisors, and now the Councilmember for CD 14 (and Candidate for Mayor) Kevin De Leon. The Mayor of Glendale was also involved until he ceased to be Mayor.

To be direct, I don’t think any of them give a rats ass about the local businesses that are going to get wiped out during the construction process.  I guess they are more interested in the land use opportunities for developers than actual businesses which have been around for years, providing the backbone of Eagle Rock.

The ex Mayor of Glendale got what he wanted; he owns property in the construction area, and senses opportunity. I guess Hilda Solis got what she wanted. According to folks in the know she left Congress so she could come to LA County, become a Supervisor, and retire after she termed out. Nice pensions.  Her machinations at the Metro Board would be consistent with this analysis.

But wait, there’s more.

Two other groups also personally benefit by this plan. TERA,The Eagle Rock Association, has a leader who is a rabid bicycle advocate, and has choreographed the bike movement ‘take no hostages’ road diet vision to get rid of all those nasty cars that people use to get around in.   Then there is another ‘leader’ on the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council who personally gained an architectural contract with Metro concerning the BRT, and has also shut down any gainsayers.

You know, to get to work and and even buy things at the local businesses.

Personally, I find them loud, inflexible, and nasty.  Nasty like attacking anyone who does not agree with them. And I have to wonder exactly how many of the bicycle crowd actually live in Eagle Rock, as opposed to all of the residents and others who use their cars to shop with the local businesses.

He goes on to accuse supporters of bus rapid transit and a Complete Streets makeover on Colorado Blvd of bullying and threatening opponents.

And he says he has the receipts to prove it.

Or not.

More objective observers have reported the exact opposite, with advocates being shouted down in meetings and confronted outside, and both threatened and doxed on social media.

But as proof of the bad behavior on the part of bike and transit advocates, he points to a Google Drive where he has saved hundreds of tweets from those supposed bullies.

Admittedly, I haven’t had time to read all of them, which would literally take hours. But all the ones I’ve seen have been pretty damn innocuous.

Like this, under the heading of Alissa Walker Bullying.

Full disclosure, I know Alissa Walker, she’s one of the least threatening people I know.

Then there’s this, under the heading Bullying Boulevard Sentinel, a local Eastside newspaper that has often opposed bike lanes and Complete Streets.

It would seem to be extremely paranoid to consider any of that threatening or bullying in any way.

Granted, there may be something more egregious somewhere in that vast collection of archived tweets.

But I sure as hell haven’t seen it yet.

……..

It’s truly heartbreaking how hard some of our elected officials have worked to keep our streets dangerous.

In this case, CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo teamed with CD13’s Mitch O’Farrell to cancel a shovel-ready road diet on one of the city’s most dangerous corridors.

With predictable results.

………

They get it.

The SF Gate asks why Gov. Newsom vetoed a bill that would have allowed people on bicycles to treat stop signs as yields.

And why a practice most bike riders — and drivers, for that matter — do on a daily basis remains illegal.

This Bay Area rider sums it up pretty well.

“They’re getting in the way of making it legal to be safe,” said Alex Lantsberg, a San Francisco cyclist.

Lantsberg said stopping at stop signs is in fact more dangerous for cyclists, who become “sitting ducks” in the face of “a 4,000-pound death machine.”

“You don’t want to lose the momentum of moving through a stop sign. It’ll turn people off from cycling,” he said. “I also think it’s safer for cyclists to maintain momentum and get away from cars.”

“A flesh and blood human on a 20-pound rolling triangle is much more at risk than a person in a steel-encased La-Z-Boy,” he added.

………

It’s hard for me to ask others to give when I’m not in a position to do it myself.

But if you’ve got a few extra bucks lying around, donate some of it to L39ion of Los Angeles to help put more bikes in schools.

The crowdfunding campaign has been stuck around $12,000 for several days. And it’s hard to imagine a gift that could do more long-lasting good.

………

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

Police in Honolulu are looking for a bike-riding hit-and-run suspect who allegedly fled the scene after darting out in front of a motorcyclist, leaving the man lying injured in the street. Although a description of 100 to 200 pounds doesn’t exactly narrow the suspect list. 

………

Local

Another writer for City Watch asks if anyone at LA City Hall got the memo from  the COP26 climate conference. Probably not. And if they did, they’re not likely to actually do anything about it.

Happy birthday to LA’s Griffith Park, which turns 125 this year.

 

State

Bakersfield bike riders are about to get a shiny new seven-mile bike lane, the missing link in a continuous 30 mile trail from Lake Ming to Buena Vista Lake.

Berkeley is facing the usual fight over preserving parking spaces, or improving safety for everyone on the road by installing bike lanes.

A New Hampshire couple calls biking across the Golden Gate Bridge the highlight of their visit to San Francisco.

A Sausalito driver faces multiple DUI, drug and weapons charges after allegedly running down not one, but two people riding their bikes Halloween evening; a search of his car revealed fentanyl and an illegal weapon, as well as a wooden billy club.

 

National

Bicycling offers a look at how a man recovered his life after a painful mountain biking crash led to a dependence on painkillers. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Bicycling also warns against seven technologies and standards to avoid when buying a used bike. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available on Yahoo, so you’re SOL if you don’t subscribe to the magazine.

A writer for Reader’s Digest — which apparently still exists — swaps her car for an ebike for a week, and finds she doesn’t need it after all. Although the story comes off more as a long-form ad for the ebike she used than anything remotely objective.

Portland considers establishing e-cargo bike micro delivery hubs to help reduce truck and van traffic.

A Denver weekly talks with elite-level cyclist Andrew “Bernie” Bernstein, after the hit-and-run driver who nearly killed him was sentenced to just two years behind bars.

The Massachusetts man killed by a speeding driver on a cross-country ride with five other bicyclists foretold his death by noting Texas had the worst drivers they’d encountered so far; one of the two women injured in the crash was his fiancé.

Tragic news from New York, where a man started riding a bike to work over fears of using transit during the pandemic, only to lose his life at the hands of an unlicensed truck driver.

Philly residents describe just how dangerous it is to ride a bicycle in the City of Brotherly Love.

Tragic news from St. Petersburg, Florida, where authorities are trying to identify an elderly woman who suffered life-threatening injuries when she crashed her bike with an e-scooter rider; she arrived at the hospital without ID, and no identifying features. Yet another reminder to always carry identification with you when you ride. And preferably something that won’t get stolen if you’re incapacitated.

 

International

At last, a new indoor trainer that allows you to lean into turns.

Halloween is over, so it’s time for the holiday gift guides. Bike Rumor is off to an early start with their gift-giving guide for people on two wheels. Meanwhile, Pink Bike recommends 21 new bike tools for the coming year.

The Department of DIY strikes in the UK, as a local councilor fumes when “ignorant” vandals repainted their own bike lane, after their first attempt had been removed. So instead of removing it again, maybe they should just make it permanent.

A Dublin man and his backpack-riding Westie won’t be riding anytime soon, after thieves stole his racing bike, then took the ebike he borrowed the next day.

Canadian Cycling Magazine goes riding at rush hour in newly bike-friendly Paris, and calls it a dream.

Bike riders in Cyprus could soon be required to wear a bike helmet if a draft bill in the legislature passes. Similar measures elsewhere have been found to be counterproductive, while depressing ridership. 

Wellington, New Zealand is considering a plan to cut crosstown traffic by dividing the city into cells, which would allow drivers to get in and out, but not move freely from one to another.

A university lecturer in New Zealand says it’s parking that kills businesses, not bikes or buses.

 

Competitive Cycling

Florida ultracyclist Amanda Coker didn’t just set a new 24-hour record by breaking the 500-mile barrier, she also set 10 other Guinness World Records in the attempt.

Meanwhile, British pro Alex Dowsett came up short on his effort to reclaim the hour record, saying the biggest failure would have been to never try.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can own your very own vowel-free, no-frills e-cruiser bike for about a grand. If you can’t trust your bike-riding neighborhood drug dealer, who can you trust?

And how drunk do you have to be to ride a bike home from a night out, only to discover the next morning it wasn’t yours.

………

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

Record setting 109-year old French bicyclist Robert Marchand dies, and Stupid Driver Tricks on the bike paths

We can’t be too sad for someone who leaves this world after an exceptionally long, eventful — and record setting — life.

That’s the case with the news that French cyclist Robert Marchand left us at the remarkable age of 109.

The former truck driver, lumberjack and firefighter didn’t take up bicycling until he was 68, never realizing that he would ride for another 40 years. And set a number of age group records along the way.

This comes from his obituary in the Washington Post.

(Marchand) cycled from Paris to Moscow in 1992 and set the 100-kilometer (62.14-mile) record for cyclists past the age of 100.

In January 2017, he set a world record in the 105-plus age category — created especially for him — by riding 22.54 kilometers (14 miles) in one hour on the boards of the Vélodrome National near Paris.

I’m now waiting for a rival,” he said at the time.

Three years earlier, Mr. Marchand had covered 26.92 kilometers (16.73 miles) in one hour to better his own world record in the over-100s category.

After a life like that, we should mourn, not for him, but for those of us who are left behind, and will miss Marchand dearly.

And wish him a safe and speedy ride home.

Photo by Valeriia Miller from Pexels.

………

The full Metro Board will vote Thursday on whether to approve running the planned North Hollywood to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit line along Colorado Blvd through Eagle Rock, which forms the basis of the resident-driven Beautiful Boulevard plan.

Comments for the 10 am meeting can only be submitted over the phone.

………

Evidently, it was Drive on the Bike Path Day over the weekend.

Todd Seelie sends a Nextdoor screenshot showing a driver stuck trying to access the LA River bike path.

And here’s one from UC Davis, courtesy of frequent contributor Megan Lynch.

………

Lynch also forwards this video of Oakland bike riders enjoying a beautiful day.

………

Everyone knows bikes and brews naturally go together. Especially now, when tipping one back can help support the LACBC.

And it doesn’t hurt that Highland Park Brewery made this short list of the city’s best microbreweries.

………

It was a bike giveaway weekend.

The YMCA in Longmont, Colorado gave around 200 bikes to kids in need.

Eighty-eight Michigan kids with special needs got custom adaptive bicycles, after waiting two years for the giveaway when Covid-19 cancelled last year’s event.

Nearly 500 children and adults received donated bikes courtesy of a Toledo, Ohio rescue mission.

And Metro will start working with community-based organizations to give some of the 400 to 500 bicycles abandoned on LA buses and trains every month to needy residents or the homeless.

………

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

There’s not a pit in hell deep enough for the ebike-riding man who yelled antisemitic slurs outside a Florida synagog, then returned to leave a bag of human shit in front of the entrance.

………

Local

CD5 Councilmember Paul Koretz and LADOT presented plans to close the infamous Northvale Gap in the Expo Line bike path, with construction scheduled to be completed by 2025 — 13 years after the Expo Line opened. More evidence that Koretz supports bikes — as long as they don’t inconvenience drivers in any way.

A photo essay from the LA Times looks at the rebirth of the 6th Street Bridge, which will include bike ramps to help riders reach the elevated span.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition makes the case for why Pasadena is the perfect fit for bikes — and what it will take to get there.

 

State

San Diego driver Jamison Connor faces at least 30 years behind bars after being convicted on seven counts for the 2019 hit-and-run death of Kevin Lentz.

San Diego letter writers call on the city to rethink how people get around, and for drivers to give bike riders and pedestrians some space.

Bakersfield equestrians call on the city to ban ebikes from the city’s dirt trails.

Sad news from Sebastopol, where a 52-year old man died nearly two weeks after he and a 12-year old boy were severely injured by an alleged drunk driver while riding their bikes; no word on the child’s condition.

El Dorado County says if you want to open a Dollar General store, you’ve got to build a bike path, too.

 

National

Travel website TripSavvy lists America’s 15 best destinations to explore by bicycle; West Coast cities Seattle, Portland and San Francisco made the cut. And needless to say, Los Angeles didn’t.

Over 25,000 people commented on the proposed update to the MUTCD — the bible of traffic engineering. Four hundred of those came from NACTO, including calls to end the deadly 85th percentile law, and make ending traffic deaths a guiding principle of the document.

Bike Snob’s Eben Wiese says electronic shifting works perfectly, but he’d rather go old school and do it himself, anyway.

No, an eight-year old kid probably wasn’t killed riding his bike into the side of a turning truck in Las Vegas; it’s far more likely the driver turned into his path.

Dozens of Denver bike riders held a die-in to protest the city’s unsafe streets after three people on bicycles were killed in the past week.

More proof that you can’t please everyone, as a hundred or so New Yorkers marched down the city’s most successful Open Street, demanding the right to drive on the same street they were able to march on because no one’s allowed to drive on it.

Bike Life is taking off in New York, where young bike riders are swarming drivers and commandeering roadways in a celebration of life on two wheels.

You know a street is too damn dangerous when a woman is killed trying to cross it, just two blocks from where her husband was killed trying to cross the same street four years earlier.

 

International

A new study from Ford shows listening to music on headphones slows reaction time by an average of four seconds for both drivers and bike riders.

A British Columbia letter writer says bike lanes are for the 99% of people who aren’t “avid” cyclists.

The former leader of Britain’s Labour Party is one of us, despite not learning to ride a bike until he was 50. And he calls for a much-needed two wheeled revolution in the country’s transportation system.

The Irish Times says riding an ebike can speed your commute and reduce sweat while still giving you a workout, and Tech Radar calls them a good value and a great investment.

Life is cheap in Spain, where a 32-year old woman is expected to spend less than four years behind bars after pleading guilty to the drunk driving deaths of three triathletes on a training ride, and critically injuring two others; with time served, she’ll likely be released in just six months — despite a failed drug test and a BAC nearly four times the legal limit.

A New Zealand court denies a driver’s effort to get out of her sentence for the meth and weed-fueled crash that killed a man riding a bike, despite already having her sentence cut from nearly two years behind bars to a cushy 10 months of home detention. And despite the fact that another man is in prison the drunken crash that killed her own son.

 

Competitive Cycling

Belgian cyclist Victor Campenaerts took his first Grand Tour stage win in Sunday’s 15th stage of the Giro, while Egan Bernal continued to look pretty in pink.

Cycling Weekly offers five talking points from Sunday’s stage, from the rainy crash-filled start to a competitive finish.

Budding Belgian superstar Remco Evenepoel has gone from contending for the pink leader’s jersey to hoping for a top ten finish, conceding his form is not what he had hoped for.

Who had Laurens ten Dam holding off Colin Strickland to win the inaugural 155-mile Gravel Locos on your fantasy gravel racing card?

Bicycling explains everything you need too know about this year’s crit season. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. 

 

Finally…

Lots of women ride their bikes while they’re pregnant. Not many ride to deliver the baby, though.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

$20 billion for bikes in Biden Transpo bill, “Beautiful” Eagle Rock BRT meeting tonight, and comic artist on Bike Talk

I’m doing my best to keep this an April fools-free zone today.

Which means I’m not going to play any tricks on you, and I’ll do my best not to link to any. So if anything slips through, let me know.

As always, I want you to be able to trust whatever you may see here. 

Photo by Skitterphoto from Pexels.

………

Now that’s more like it.

The Guardian reports President Biden’s new $2 trillion infrastructure plan will include much needed funding for bikes.

Protect cyclists and pedestrians: Bikes, too, would get a share of the billions. The package includes $20 billion for safety – including funds to ‘reduce crashes and fatalities, especially for cyclists and pedestrians.’

That’s in addition to funding for transit to cut traffic congestion and reduce the number of cars on the road.

Let’s hope the bike funding — and the bill itself — survives what promises to be a brutal congressional process.

………

Tonight is the last scheduled virtual public meeting to weigh in on the Beautiful Blvd plan for Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock.

………

Now this should be a fun conversation.

………

Here’s your chance to work in advocacy on the east side of the Bay Area.

………

No bias here.

When a Pennsylvania buggy gets right hooked by a truck driver, the state police blame the buggy driver for somehow riding into the truck’s blind spot and crashing into the truck.

Sure, let’s go with that.

Evidently, those Amish buggies must really haul ass to undertake a truck driver.

Never mind that the horse, which somehow wasn’t involved in the crash, would have been the first thing to strike the truck in that bizarro scenario.

Thanks to Mike Bike for the heads-up.

………

I couldn’t get the video to load, but maybe you’ll have better luck than I did.

………

Hello, Wilshire Blvd? Hello?

This is what we could be doing in Los Angeles.

And what we’ll have to do if we want to reduce the city’s crippling addiction to motor vehicles, let alone make a dent in our massive contribution to climate change.

But we’re not.

………

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

A Michigan man faces up to ten years behind bars after pleading guilty to beating a Black teenager with a chain bicycle lock, just because of his race. Seriously, there’s not a pit deep enough for someone like that. And no, there’s no guarantee that he rides a bike; he could have just used the chain lock for something else. But still. 

Teenage bike riders swarmed and pummeled a man to stop him from heckling people on Miami Beach; one boy was arrested and could face charges.

A Vancouver man faces charges for attacking a truck passenger participating in an anti-mask rally with his bicycle.

………

Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

San Jose-area drivers somehow find it impossible to believe that a distracted driver seriously injured a bike rider, concluding that the guy on the bike had to be at fault. Evidently, they’ve never watched someone try to drive while using a handheld phone. Other than themselves, of course.

 

National

Outside’s Joe Lindsey offers advice on how to ensure your bike is ready for riding this spring. Although for those of us in Southern California, the easiest way to make sure you’re ready for spring is to keep riding all winter.

Bicycling offers advice on how women riders can avoid seat pain and saddle sores, along with other common problems.

A reviewer for Gear Junkie discovers he’s become a bike snob, after doing his best to hate Cannondale’s new ebike, and failing.

Wired recommends everything you need for an epic bikepacking trip.

Call it a national park ciclovía. For the next two weeks, Yellowstone NP will be open to people on bicycles before it opens to drivers on the 16th.

The residents of a tiny Arkansas town remember a man they called Bicycle Charley, known by all after 50 years of selling the local paper from a trailer towed behind his bicycle.

Three kindhearted Oklahoma cops dug into their own pockets to replace a kid’s bike when it from stolen from an elementary school, taking car to replace it with the same make and model he had before.

A Cincinatti man copped a plea for the hit-and-run death of a prominent attorney as the lawyer rode his bike last year; he now faces up to 11 years behind bars after pleading to vehicular homicide and fleeing the scene of a crash.

A 25-year old Brooklyn woman eases her pandemic lockdown anxiety by learning to ride a bike for the first time.

A new video of New York’s First Avenue bike lane shows the people on two wheels are going to need more space, as cars barely outnumber bikes on the street.

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, ER doctors were forced to confront the daily toll of traffic-related injuries and deaths; a New York physician says enough!

A Philadelphia man will face a murder charge after turning himself in for fatally shooting an 11-year old boy, and injuring the 14-year old boy he was riding with.

Tragic news from Florida where a man was killed just minutes after getting tossed out of a rail yard, when he tried to cross under a stopped train car with his bicycle.

 

International

Road.cc recommends their favorite bicycle wheels of 2021, with prices starting at the equivalent of a surprisingly low $344. Although prices are given British pounds, so cost and availability may vary.

If your main concern is looking cute on your bicycle, Yahoo has the bikes for you.

An 18-year old man was convicted of ramming an 18-year old London bike rider with his car, then getting out and repeatedly stabbing him in a brutal attack.

British motorists decide a spiral intersection design intended to improve safety for bicyclists and pedestrians by eliminating right-of-way is just too damn confusing.

An op-ed in an Irish paper says transportation is too often considered gender neutral, but active transportation plans must take differing needs of “women, children, the elderly, those with a disability and different ethnic minorities” into account.

The bike boom has hit the Philippines, as bike riders take to the streets while confronting government efforts to restrict riders.

Surprisingly, a British man got his bike back two years after it was stolen in an Australian town, when he was 102 days into a record-setting attempt to be the youngest person to ride solo across the world; he was literally left with just the clothes on his back after everything else was taken. A 46-year old man faces charges after being caught riding the stolen bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

A Paralympic cyclist is using her platform to be a voice for others, after discovering adaptive bicycles could be modified to meet the needs of differently abled bike riders. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

Bad enough if you’re going to steal a bicycle, but don’t shoot a police dog when they come for you; thankfully, he’s recovering — the dog, not the jerk who shot him. That feeling when you suffer fatal injuries riding BMX, but just won’t die.

And a Houston man learns the hard way that riding a bike on the freeway is illegal — and the cop behind him wasn’t giving him a police escort.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CM5WjpMHbLZ/?utm_source=ig_embed

………

Thanks to Matthew R for his generous donation to help keep SoCal’s best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day; donations of any size are always appreciated

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

%d bloggers like this: