Tag Archive for climate emergency

No surprise as LA fails first HLA test, and CTC praises Active Transportation Program targeted for Newsom budget cuts

Just 223 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’ve made it up to 1,143 signatures, so don’t stop now! I plan to forward the petition to the mayor’s office next week, so urge anyone who hasn’t already signed it to sign now! 

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Is anyone really surprised Los Angeles isn’t living up to Measure HLA yet?

Or at all?

After a month of foot dragging, putting the city’s street resurfacing program on hold, and near-total silence on the subject from city leaders, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports that the city is has just finished work repaving Coronado Street in Silver Lake.

And needless to say, failed to follow through with the bike lanes mandated by the city’s mobility plan under HLA.

Which means, as I understand it, anyone can now file suit to force them to comply.

You know, in case you’re in the mood.

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The California Transportation Commission sang the praises of the state’s Active Transportation Program, calling it a “key part of California’s climate efforts,” even as Governor Newsom calls for drastic budget cuts.

And even though he could easily maintain funding at current levels, or let alone increase it, just by making modest cuts to the state’s massive $19 billion — yes, with a b — highway fund.

Once again demonstrating that Newsom’s oft-spoken commitment to fighting climate change is thinner than the tread on a worn out tire.

Just like his appearance at a fancy political dinner after calling for Californians to quarantine during the early days of the pandemic, Newsom’s budget cuts show an extreme level of auto-centric hypocrisy.

In every sense.

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Video of P Diddy — aka Sean Combs — beating his girlfriend in a hotel hallway was a bridge too far for Peloton, which cut ties with the rapper and producer.

But evidently, they were just fine with all the other accusations of sexual and physical violence, and possible sex trafficking, that weren’t caught on video.

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This is your chance to see protected bike lanes on PCH in Long Beach.

Now we just need the do the other 650 or so miles.

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The North Westwood Neighborhood Council — you know, the one that’s not dominated by Westwood NIMBYs — is holding a virtual meeting of their Transportation and Safety Committee this evening.

Just in case you care about bike and pedestrian safety in and around Westwood Village, and getting the long-delayed bike lanes on Westwood Blvd.

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There may be hope for Vision Zero yet. Even if LA never does get its shit together.

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Kriss Kyle and Danny Macaskill go head-to-head in a game of B.I.K.E.

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It’s now 153 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

No bias here. The San Diego Reader misses the point entirely, complaining that local drivers are intimidated by Critical Mass splinter groups tying up traffic while participating in ride outs. Never mind that Critical Mass is a protest against the dominance and dangers of our current automotive hegemony.

A Sacramento woman is still waiting for justice, nine months after a road-raging driver nearly killed her by intentionally ramming her bike as she was riding with a group; the 30-year old driver was arrested, but later release pending a trial date.

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Local 

This is who we share the road with. A Valencia man was busted for DUI for the second time in just three weeks, after stalling his car in the traffic lanes of the 5 Freeway; three weeks ago, he smashed the other driver’s windshield following a crash in Stevenson Ranch.

 

State

No, you can’t legally have earbuds or headphones covering both ears when you drive or ride a bike in California.

Community members call for change after a woman was killed riding her bike in Cathedral City earlier this month; she was the 48th person killed riding a bicycle in the Coachella Valley in the past 20 years.

This is who we share the road with, part two. A 17-year old girl was busted for suspicion of DUI and hit-and-run after driving on the wrong side of the road and crashing into a Newbury Park home, then walking away; her 17-year old passenger was arrested on suspicion of public intoxication and resisting or delaying an investigation.

Huh? A Bay Area website considers the past, present and future of bicycling, saying it transformed from a “niche hobby” to one of the city’s major infrastructure efforts. Something tells me the people who’ve been biking up there for a decades might disagree with that ridiculous description.

 

National

Cycling Weekly lets the air out of the solid bike tire dream.

People For Bikes shares their federal trade policy objectives for the coming year.

A new study from the National Institutes of Health shows people who ride bikes regularly are significantly less likely to suffer from knee pain and osteoarthritis by age 65, compared to people who don’t bike. And may even live longer.

Seattle just got it’s first Dutch-style protected intersection. Which is still one more than Los Angeles has.

Denver’s free bicycle registry program, developed in conjunction with 529 Garage, has helped cut bike thefts in the city by 30%. It’s not officially a citywide program, but you can register your bike for free with Bike Index right here. 

All you have to do to get free bike repair — or a free bike — is move to Missoula, Montana.

Austin, Texas installed a lane reduction and separated bike lanes — aka a road diet — on a street plagued by speeding drivers, and saw a 64.2% drop in drivers going over 40 mph, with zero traffic deaths or serious injuries.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole 20 bike worth ten grand from an Austin nonprofit that gives free fixies to people in need.

If you build it, they will come. After going on a bike lane building binge, bicycling is growing faster in Chicago than any other city in the US, with a 119% increase in just four years. That compares favorably with Los Angeles, which didn’t. 

The US Justice Department is threatening to sue the NYPD if their cops don’t stop parking on the damn sidewalks. Maybe they could stop ’em from parking in bike lanes, too. 

A longtime international restauranteur is now selling tacos from his bicycle, after losing his popular restaurant New York in a divorce.

Speaking of a special place in hell, there’s one waiting for whoever stole an adaptive adult tricycle from an autistic Philadelphia teenager, who used it to feel more connected o the community.

 

International

Road.cc says the current slashing of bicycle prices isn’t the sign of a downturn, but just a return to normal market conditions.

Mountain biking in the City of Quebec.

The mayor of Montreal’s Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie borough has taken a page from the Paris mayor’s book, and charging higher parking fees for large trucks and SUVs.

A Scottish writer says if thoughtless delivery bike riders knew they’re as accountable as car drivers are for reckless behavior, “they might screw the nut.” Which evidently isn’t a local phrase for having sex with Mr. Peanut. And not that anyone actually holds drivers accountable, anyway. 

Apparently, British cops are now turning to Q for their traffic control devices, developing an electromagnetic pulse weapon to instantly disable ebikes and e-scooters James Bond would be proud of. Maybe they could try it on e-cars, too.

The Guardian’s Peter Walker argues that the UK’s new law against dangerous bicycling will accomplish pretty much nothing, while GCN wants to know why bike riding is so politicized right now. Which is a damn good question.

The head of a British bike company says if aviation or railroads had the safety record roads do, “planes would be grounded and trains would be stopped.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar continued to ride circles around the peloton by winning his fifth stage of the Giro on Tuesday, extending his lead to a whopping 7 minutes and 18 seconds; the stage was delayed for three hours and significantly shortened after riders revolted over being forced to ride through a snow storm.

Pogačar briefly lost his KOM on the Passo di Foscagno on Sunday’s stage of the Giro, after someone flagged him on Strava despite devastated the field.

 

Finally…

Bicycling is a gateway drug that leads to spandex and a latte addiction. That feeling when your new bike path is less than a block long, ending in a brick wall, and with a staircase in the middle.

And that feeling when a petition calling for banishing bike riders draws a whole four signatures.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Happy Bike to Work/Bike Anywhere Day, Gov. Newsom says screw the planet and keep on driving, and Bike Talk talks racing

Just 229 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 made it up another notch to 1,132 signatures, so don’t stop now! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until she meets with us! 

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Happy Bike to Work/Bike Anywhere Day! Or as it’s known in Los Angeles these days, Thursday.

But at least you can get free Metro and Metrolink rides with your bike today, along with free Metro Bike rides.

Meanwhile, San Diego expects to have at least 10,000 people participate in the city’s Bike Anywhere Day, while the local public radio station tells you how to make the most of it.

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Evidently, California Governor Gavin Newsom wasn’t serious about all that climate change stuff.

Newsom, who Politico described as fully embracing the role of climate governor, had this to say in a press release in 2022.

“Cleaning the air we breathe. Protecting our communities from the harmful impacts of the oil industry. Accelerating California’s clean energy future. Each of these actions on their own are monumental steps to tackling the climate crisis – but California isn’t waiting a minute longer to get them done. We’re taking all of these major actions now in the most aggressive push on climate this state has ever seen because later is too late. Together with the Legislature’s leadership, the progress we make on the climate crisis this year will be felt for generations – and the impact will spread far beyond our borders. California will continue blazing a trail for America and the rest of the world on the swift and meaningful actions necessary for cutting carbon pollution, protecting communities and leading the clean energy future.”

But just two years later, he is proposing a whopping $600 million cut to the state’s Active Transportation Program to address the state’s massive budget shortfall — which Streetsblog’s Melanie Curry describes as “the most climate, energy, and equity efficient program in the entire transportation budget.”

All because he doesn’t want to touch the state’s massive $21 billion highway fund, as spokesperson for the governor claims that diverting highway funds could “negatively impact the key work that Caltrans does to maintain the state highway system.”

In other words, appeasing motorists by building and widening highways and fixing freeway potholes is far more important than, say, saving the planet.

The mealy-mouth hypocrisy is astounding.

Or it would be if Newsom hadn’t long ago revealed just how shallow his commitment is when it conflict with political expediency.

This is how Calbike Policy Director Jared Sanchez addressed the issue in an email to supporters.

There is no deficit in California’s transportation budget. Thanks to federal funding streams, there’s no need for transportation cuts.

Yet, Governor Gavin Newsom cut almost $600 million from the Active Transportation Program (ATP) in his draft budget. The ATP funds projects that make biking and walking safer and more appealing, advancing the infrastructure changes needed to combat climate change.

Tell the Legislature to Restore Full ATP Funding

This cut amounts to eliminating an entire ATP funding cycle, significantly reducing funding for infrastructure that will reduce soaring pedestrian deaths and enable more people to get around safely by bicycle.

The Active Transportation Program needs more funding, not less.

  • The ATP already turned away many worthy biking and walking projects because of a lack of funding, even before this cut.
  • The governor’s budget doesn’t cut funding for climate-killing highways.
  • California can afford to fund the ATP. With rising climate chaos, we can’t afford not to spend money on active transportation.
  • This drastic cut will affect communities across California, forcing local governments to delay planned bikeways — maybe one near you.

Last year, the governor tried to cut the ATP, and the legislature restored the funding. Tell your representatives we need them to protect active transportation again.

Seriously. do it already.

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Megan Lynch offers a photo from last night’s Ride of Silence in Davis, with a promise of more to come. So check back with her later.

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Bike Talk talks with longtime bike scribe Joe Lindsey about this year’s racing season.

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It’s now 148 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

The UK’s Conservative government passed a new law to address a problem that seldom happens, criminalizing causing death or serious injury by dangerous or careless cycling, with a maximum penalty of up to 14 years behind bars — seven years more than the penalty for doing the same thing with a car — as party leader Iain Duncan Smith insisted the anti-bicycling law isn’t anti-bicycling.  Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

I ain’t afraid of no ebike. Police in the UK are developing a Ghostbusters-style electromagnetic pulse, aka EMP, weapon to instantly stop scofflaw ebike or e-scooter riders in their tracks. And probably fry any electronic devices in the vicinity. Thanks again to Megan Lynch. 

Bike riders in Ireland respond to “highly regrettable” new signs on Irish Rail banning bicyclists at peak times, calling it a step backwards eliminates the possibility of muti-modal commuting.

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

A woman hit by a bicyclist in London’s Regent Park earlier this month urged bike riders to slow down, as a British broadcast network clocked bicyclists riding up to 7 mph over the park’s 20 mph speed limit.

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Local 

A writer for Condé Nast Traveler rides along with The Mixed Race, a weekly high-speed, women-led public bicycling group zipping through the streets of Los Angeles every Thursday night.

A WeHo website continues its recent anti-bike lane screeds, arguing that building protected bike lanes will take a sizable investment in staffer time and money. Even though not building them could prove substantially more expensive in the long run, as the city will be required to pay out lawsuits for any bike riders killed or injured where they would have been built.

The South Bay beach cities are considering even tighter restriction on ebikes, following a confrontation between local residents and a group of ebike-riding hooligans. Even though the type of bikes they were riding had nothing to do with the incident. And never mind that they were riding throttle-controlled fat bikes that should be reclassified as mopeds or electric motor scooters. 

 

State

Outside challenges you to three days of bicycling bliss along Southern California’s epic bike trails, starting with the El Prieto trail in the mountains above Pasadena, followed by nearby Tapia Canyon, and the Connect G-Out, Sidewinder, Dogtag and Karl’s trails in the scrubland east of Santa Clarita. And that’s just Day 1.

Bakersfield has seen a 30% jump in reports of bicycling collisions in just the last two years.

 

National

A new report ranks which states are most interested in bicycling, based on the volume of internet searches for “different bike types,” “cycling safety,” and “learning to ride,” which may not exactly be the best way to determine it; Washington, Rhode Island and Vermont top the list, with California all the way down at number eight.

A Chicago public radio station discusses what the city is doing to protect bike riders, as it suffers an average of over 1,400 bicycle collisions each year. Hint: Not enough. 

Crashes between Massachusetts bike riders and pedestrians are flagged as an emerging threat as bike lanes expand in the state. As if pedestrians don’t have a responsibility to look both ways before stepping into a bike lane, and misbehaving bicyclists would be no less dangerous without them.

DC councilmembers are pushing to restore funding for a controversial lane reduction and bike lane project, after the mayor thought he had killed it.

Bicycle advocates in Baton Rouge and New Orleans join a public radio station to discuss how to improve bike infrastructure in the Bayou State.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Georgia man plans to ride 82 miles to celebrate his 82nd birthday, after riding his age every year since he turned 70.

 

International

An op-ed in the Evening Standard says London’s bike riders aren’t killers, and the bicycling community in the city’s Regent Park is “keen” to protect others.

London’s transportation department tells bike riders to improve their behavior around floating bus stops, even though only four people have been hit by bike riders in three years.

Good Net considers how the city’s bicycle revolution is rapidly transforming Paris, as the number of bike riders has overtaken the amount of motorists on the city’s rues.

A new Finnish study shows that people who received their bicycles through a workplace benefit program ride more than five times the miles of the average Finn.

Germany is conducting a study allowing s-pedelecs — ped-assist bikes capable of doing up to 28 mph — on a special high speed bike path to determine if they can safely share bike paths with slower riders.

A new petition in Hyderabad, India, calls on the city to do more to make it bike friendly and promote active mobility.

No surprise here, as the new 100% tariffs Joe Biden imposed on Chinese-made electric vehicles and batteries could double the price of ebike batteries.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tadej Pogačar maintained his two minute and forty second hold on the Giro’s pink leader’s jersey, as Italy’s Jonathan Milan survived a mass sprint to win the race’s 11th stage on Wednesday.

The formerly high-flying Visma-Lease a Bike cycling team is falling apart at the Giro, with the team down to just four riders with ten stages to go after both sprinter Olav Kooij and Cian Uijtdebroeks, who was fifth in the general classification, dropped out and Robert Gesink and Christophe Laporte both crashed out in the first week; team leaders Wout van Aert and Jonas Vingegaard were already out following crashes earlier this year.

World champ Mathieu van der Poel will skip mountain biking at the Paris Olympics to focus on the Olympic road race, after competing in the Tour de France..

Olympic triathlete Taylor Knibb even stunned even herself by earning a second Olympic berth by winning the women’s time trial at the U.S. road cycling championships in Charlotte, West Virginia.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can star in an ebike commercial being shot in Orange County and Big Bear.

And if you’re going to deliver food orders, it might as well be from a Penny Farthing.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Aussie prof killed in Marina bike crash, protected bike lane mandate pays off, and CA has to walk the walk on emissions

Just 12 days left in the 9th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Erik B, Lisa G, Samer S, Erik G and Gold Leaf Films for their generous support to help keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

Don’t wait. Give now!

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Days left to launch the California ebike incentive program as promised this fall: 9

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I’m gutted.

Yesterday we shared a photo depicting the aftermath of a Friday bike crash in Marina del Rey, which I later learned was taken by Ian Dutton.

Then last night I came across a story from an Australian news site reporting that a beloved college teacher had been killed riding along an unidentified California beach.

And later still, I saw a comment from Libby Starling, who identified herself as the victim’s sister-in-law, reporting that the victim in the Marina crash, Manhattan Beach resident Leland Dutcher, didn’t make it.

Yet I somehow failed to initially make the connection that it was the same person.

Somehow, posting that photo makes it feel personal to me, perhaps because I inherited my dad’s extra empathy gene.

I keep telling myself that it’s not about me.

What I do is about serving the victims of these crashes, and their families, and the greater bicycling community.

But it hurts, damn it.

It hurts.

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We’ve linked to a number of stories about the bikelash in Cambridge, Massachusetts recently, where some drivers are up in arms over the profusion of new bike lanes on city streets.

But according to Velo, a new report from city officials shows the city’s first-in-the-nation mandate to building protected bike lanes has been an overwhelming success.

According to the report, since the policy was implemented four years ago,

  • 80 percent more protected bike lanes from cars than in 2004.
  • 9 percent of Cambridge residents bike to work, and 37 percent of residents walk or bike.
  • 25 percent of people visiting the business district arrive by bicycle.
  • 34 percent more people commute by bike since 2019, while 15 percent more people commute via sidewalks since 2019.
  • The number of children on bikes, in trailers, or cargo bikes has increased by 3.5 times.
  • Up to 80 percent fewer cyclists ride on sidewalks, resulting in fewer accidents between pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Bike lanes in the area have cut accidents between bikes and cars by 50 percent since 2012.
  • The proportion of crashes that did not result in injury is three times lower now than it was from 2004 to 2012. Incapacitating injuries are down by 84 percent in the same time frame.

All of which sounds like a pretty convincing argument to keep building them there.

And here.

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They get it.

Planetizen says California has to walk the walk when it comes to reducing transportation emissions.

Because while the state is great at setting Complete Streets and climate change policies, it continues to waste billions on traffic and emission inducing highway projects.

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LA in a Minute examines why white plastic bollards are popping up all over Los Angeles.

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The mayor of Escondido has declared war on bike lanes, introducing an ordinance to prohibit future bike and transit improvements in the city.

https://twitter.com/TallDarknJewish/status/1734313400409415951

 

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Well, of course he was one of us.

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Megan Lynch forwards video of George Clooney and Jimmie Kimmel discussing what kids wanted from a bike back in the day.

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

No bias here. Bay Area bike advocates were justifiably up in arms over a story from the San Francisco Standard we linked to yesterday, which trotted out the usual bike-hating bile, including “People hate bike lanes, at least in part, because people hate cyclists. And in fairness, many cyclists give non-cyclists more than a few things to hate.” Because we all know all drivers operate their vehicles perfectly, and never, ever do anything that would give bike riders or pedestrians something to hate.

New York’s bike-hating, rightwing councilwoman demonstrates how to say you have no idea what you’re talking about without saying you have no idea what you’re talking about, while somehow assuming we’re all a group of millionaire cultists.

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

Bakersfield police arrested 12 people riding bicycles, 11 of them juveniles, for an undisclosed incident that happened at the city’s Valley Plaza Mall; a police sergeant said the group, which was organized through social media, was “causing road hazards, and not following the rules of the road.” Except that sounds more like a traffic violation, rather than a crime subject to arrest. And full disclosure, I used to write advertising for that mall. 

A bike-riding Massachusetts man faces an animal cruelty charge for allegedly beating a dog and knocking its 69-year old owner to the ground, after using his bike to separate his two dogs from the victim’s dog when they got into a fight. Using his bike to separate them was smart; beating the other dog afterwards, not so much. Or forgivable. 

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Local 

No news is good news, right? 

 

State

Encinitas is responding to the death of a 15-year old ebike rider in June by considering a slate of bike and pedestrian safety improvements on city streets, including left turn bike boxes.

San Diego adopted a new Complete Streets policy aimed at making local streets safer and more equitable. But as we’ve seen in Los Angeles, a policy without an enforcement mechanism can be pretty useless.

A Santa Barbara writer tries to explain what’s going on with the traffic diverters on Sola Street, as the city attempts to create a crosstown bikeway without removing parking spaces to install a bike lane.

Kindhearted Clovis, California cops bought a new bike for a local teenager after someone stole his locked bike while he was at school.

A nearly $125,000 bequest from the man known as the Legend of Mt. Diablo for his daily rides up the Bay Area climb is helping to fund a campaign to build safety turnouts on his favorite ride, two years after he was killed by a driver while riding his bike.

 

National

The New York Times examines the rise in pedestrian deaths, blaming distracted drivers and a lack of safe sidewalks, while too easily discounting the deadly design of SUVs.

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says most bike reviews are useless, so just get out there and ride them yourself.

Clean Technica says ebikes are radically more efficient than electric cars, while a writer for Electrek relates the lessons his wife learned from her first 100 miles commuting to work by ebike.

Oregon will now allow drivers to pass bike riding “obstructions” in No Passing Zones, as long as the person on the bicycle is riding at less than half the posted speed limit.

Great idea. The Iowa Bicycle Coalition is visiting nearly 100 bike shops across the state to kick off their “support your local bike shop week.” Because if we don’t support them, they may not be there when you need them.

Kindhearted cops in Boston replaced a nine-year old boy’s bicycle after someone stole his bike from his backyard.

Sad news from Syracuse NY, where a man riding a bikeshare ebike was killed when a cop somehow turned his patrol car into him; the officer is now on administrative leave while the crash is investigated.

Tragic news from North Carolina, where a man was killed by a drunk driver while riding his bicycle, just hours after his father was killed in a collision, leaving their family to plan two funerals.

‘Tis the Season. Nearly 100 volunteer “elves” refurbished nearly 530 donated bicycles for a Georgia charity to give to local kids in need.

 

International

Momentum says the Dutch Reach is the simple solution to help stop dooring incidents. The only problem is actually getting drivers and passengers to use it. 

A British motorcyclist got three and a half years behind bars for crashing into a bike-riding woman while riding stoned, without a license or insurance, and with fake plates on his motorcycle; the victim ended up having her leg amputated.

The UK’s largest chain of bike shops is ridiculed for building bikes wrong, putting on all the right parts, “but not necessarily in the right places.”

The Jerusalem Post recommends the best helmets for your bicycle or motorbike riding dog — including a hard shell propeller beanie.

 

Competitive Cycling

Fox News continues its war on trans cyclists, quoting commentator Riley Gaines condemning a third place finisher as a “traitor to women” after she came to the defense of the trans women who finished ahead of her.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can build your very own wireless bike brakes. Your next ebike could be a…Cervélo?

And nothing like finding a useless bike rack at the end of your ride.

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Chag sameach!

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

LA’s non-emergency traffic emergency, Lancet report offers hope for climate crisis, and Fetterman aims to loosen MUTCD

He’s got a point.

Maybe the emergency posed by the fire that closed a mile-long section of the Santa Monica Freeway isn’t that much of an emergency after all.

If it was, they might be doing more to get people out of their cars and onto transit than just talking about it. Or maybe onto bikes, for that matter.

Like reducing or eliminating fares for Metro buses, trains and bikeshare.

Although to be fair, while Metro continues to charge full fares, the much smaller Commuter Express Service will be free for the remainder of the year.

https://twitter.com/GlennC1/status/1724954769507426415

Then there’s this.

After a decade of complaints, and official denials that it was even a possibility, traffic signals were altered to speed up trains that have long been absurdly forced to stop at traffic signals.

And often blocked by drivers who didn’t clear the intersection, leading to long — and apparently needless — delays in service.

Photo from Metro Bike website.

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The prestigious medical journal Lancet released an extensive report outlining the “most up-to-date” health effects of climate change, and the urgent need to confront the crisis of a warming planet.

Along with a surprising degree of hope in low-carbon future, suggesting “there are transformative opportunities for a healthy, prosperous future for all.”

Health-centred climate action could still save millions of lives every year. A just and equitable transition away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy and energy efficiency can reduce the health harms of energy poverty, power high-quality health-supportive services, and prevent the millions of deaths occurring annually from exposure to fuel-derived air pollution. Greener, people-centered cities, and balanced, low-carbon diets can support transformative improvements in physical and mental health. 

Bicycling can, and should, be part of that equation, providing virtually carbon-free transportation that offers exceptional public health benefits.

Besides, it’s fun.

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Apparently, there’s more to Pennsylvania Senator John Fetterman’s proposed Building Safer Streets Act than we realized.

We mentioned last week that he had introduced the bill. Now Streetsblog is explaining just what’s in it.

There’s a lot packed into the slim bill’s seven pages, including changes to the Safe Streets and Roads for All program which would guarantee that 10 percent of funds are set aside for communities under 250,000 residents. It would also finally close the loophole that allows roughly one-third of states to keep their federal safety funding if they set roadway fatality “targets” higher than the number of deaths they recorded in previous years, and prevent the Federal Highway Administration from giving states points on grant applications for projects that raise speed limits on non-freeway roads.

The bulk of the legislation, though, gets deep into the weeds of the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices, a once-obscure 800+ page manual whose revision prompted a flood of 25,000 comments from safe streets advocates concerned that its upcoming revision wouldn’t adequately center the needs of people outside cars. And with pedestrian deaths already setting records, Fetterman says those changes are long overdue…

Many of those standards are pretty benign, like the rule that a green light should mean “go” everywhere in America, or that a stop sign should be shaped like an octagon rather than a square. Others, though, have far more dire implications, up to and including who lives and dies on U.S. streets. The Manual’s infamous “85th-percentile rule,” for instance, recommends that the number that appears on speed limits signs be set within five miles of per hour of the speeds that 85 percent of drivers naturally travel when no one else is on the road — even if those velocities are lethal for pedestrians, and despite the fact that the standard was created for two-lane rural highways and is widely considered unsafe in urban contexts.

The MUTCD acts as a bible for traffic planners and engineers, protecting transportation agencies from liability, while limiting innovative or even merely decorative approaches.

Like the pink crosswalks that were originally planned for the intersection in front of Pink’s Hot Dogs to mark their 80th anniversary in 2019.

But which were nixed for being out of compliance with the MUTCD.

One version advised against safe bike lane intersection treatments that are common across U.S. cities, a move that the National Association of City Transportation Officials warned would amount to a “poison pill” for the thousands of cities whose infrastructure would instantly become non-compliant. Other provisions discouraged the use of colorful crosswalks, despite the fact that studies show they can actually slash vulnerable road user crashes by 50 percent compared to the all-white designs the Manual recommends.

And when cities want to use those life-saving design elements anyway, they’re often scared off of doing it, lest they fall out of compliance with the all-powerful Manual — even though, technically, not all of its recommendations are legally binding, much like its companion document, the AASHTO Green Book. In part because remaining in compliance with the MUTCD may shield transportation agencies against lawsuits, many traffic engineers tend to treat it more like a Bible with strict commandments than a “recipe book” that encourages chefs to sub out the nuts if they’ll send the person who’ll actually eat the dish into anaphylactic shock.

And the FHWA and other government agencies, in turn, often require engineers to conduct costly studies to prove that deploying safe road designs is worth granting an exception to those restrictive federal standards — even if piles of research have verified that those designs save lives, and that the standards in the Manual don’t.

It’s worth taking a few minutes to read the whole article, because this is clearly a bill worth following.

And one that might actually have a chance in a divided Congress.

………

Heartbreaking first-person account from the husband of fallen bicyclist, architect and urban planner Laura Shinn, who was killed by a stoned driver while riding to work in San Diego’s Balboa Park two years ago.

Steven Shinn makes the case that his wife would still be alive if the city had built the long-promised protected bike lanes on Pershing Drive, which might have saved her from the man now serving 13 years for the needless meth-fueled morning crash.

My grief is worsened every time I hear an uninformed comment about road safety in our community.

“We do not want protected bike lanes in our neighborhood reducing traffic lanes and parking spaces.” My wife’s life would have been saved if those bike lanes had been protected. Studies from cities around the country have demonstrated the effectiveness of protected bike lanes to save lives without inconveniencing drivers.

Adding protected bike lanes and removing some parking benefits more than just cyclists. Local businesses see as much as a 49 percent increase in retail sales from new protected bike lanes. People who cycle to local shops spend up to 24 percentmore than those who drive and they shop more frequently. Adding protected bike lanes to streets reduces injury crashes for all road users by 58 percent and does not increase traffic congestion over time. If Pershing Drive had a protected bike lane, Laura would be riding with me today.

It’s a brave and powerful piece, which calls on San Diego to make life-saving changes for Sunday’s World Day of Remembrance for the victims of traffic violence.

And again, one well worth reading.

………

‘Tis the season.

Another holiday gift guide for bike riders, this time from Bike Radar, while Business Wire lists early Black Friday deals on ebikes.

Maybe California’s moribund ebike rebate program will finally launch in time to take advantage of the Black Friday deals. And maybe pigs will fly out of my butt.

It’s been known to happen.

………

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

No bias here. The Detroit News somehow manages to publish a 115-word article about the tragic death of a 54-year old woman killed in a collision with a semi-truck while she was riding a three-wheeled bike, without ever mentioning that the truck had a driver.

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

A bike-riding man has been arrested for a series of a dozen arson fires in LA”s Boyle Heights and Chinatown in just a one hour span; another person was busted for setting apparently unrelated fires. It would have been impossible to set that many fires over such a distance on foot, and difficult using a car in rush hour traffic. So, yay bikes?

………

Local 

While we literally beg for safer streets, Metro plans to torch $207 million for induced demand-inducing, climate arson freeway expansions in Long Beach and Cerritos — money that could go for rapid expansion of protected bike lanes or bus lanes, instead. Or it could pay for system-wide fare-free transit, with $50 million or so in change left over.

Maybe he should stick to bikes. Arnold Schwarzenegger is being sued over a collision that allegedly left a woman permanently disabled, just weeks after another lawsuit was filed by a bike-riding woman injured as he was driving his massive GMC Yukon.

WeHo is teaming with the West Hollywood Bicycle Coalition to host a mobility popup on westbound Santa Monica Blvd at Hilldale Ave and eastbound Santa Monica Blvd at San Vicente Boulevard on November 27th, to give away free bike lights and discuss mobility projects underway in the city.

The LA County Sheriff’s Department is promising a zero-tolerance approach to speeding on deadly PCH through Malibu, in the wake of four Pepperdine students killed by a driver allegedly doing 104 mph in a 45-mile zone. Good luck with that, since they don’t have a fraction of the deputies assigned to that area that would be required to effectively police the highway. 

Residents of Santa Monica’s Wilmont neighborhood are rattled after two bicycle crashes at the same intersection in two weeks; Paul Postel was lucky to escape with broken and bruised ribs, and only learned about the death of Tania Mooser at the same spot as he lay injured on the pavement.

 

State

Santa Ana received a $199,900 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety to promote bicycle and pedestrian safety; Goleta got one, too, for the oddly specific amount of $103,587.

This is who we share the road with. A 47-year old San Diego man has been convicted of murder, as well as other charges, for the drunken hit-and-run that killed a toddler last year; Margarito Angeles Vargas was driving at over two-and-a-half times the legal alcohol limit when he ran down 19-month-old Annaleeh Rodarte as she crossed the street with members of her family.

 

National

Bicycling recommends the best rain gear to keep you riding. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available anywhere else, so you’re on your own if the magazine blocks you. 

Trek lost a trademark infringement case after the court ruled a Washington state woman’s Ranger Trek brand won’t cause confusion with the much bigger bikemaker; Trek is ranked #4 on a list of “trademark bullies” for its overly litigious approach to protecting its brand.

Electrek reports cops are now using ebikes to catch people on ebikes, much as they use seized muscle cars to catch speeders.

Portland’s planning commission voted to speed housing construction by rolling back requirements for bike parking. But cars are still fine, apparently.

HuffPo reports on mounting “bombshells” in the Austin, Texas trial of Kaitlin Armstrong for the perceived love triangle murder of gravel cycling champ Moriah “Mo” Wilson, as the prosecution rests and the defense begins to make their case.

Chicago Magazine has chosen “bike lane revolutionary” Christina Whitehouse as their Chicagoan of the Year, honoring her as the founder of grassroots advocacy group Bike Lane Uprising.

Chicago Streetsblog takes local TV station WGN to task for a misleading report suggesting a new 1.3-mile protected bike lane is dangerous.

No surprise here. A new report shows that the quality of service for New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare has declined since ride-hailing company Lyft assumed operations, and that service is even worse in low-income areas that could benefit from bikeshare.

A Virginia paper says legislators across the US are puzzled why traffic deaths are spiking, even though people are driving less — then goes on to explain how speed cams could solve the problem, suggesting they’re not that confused about it.

 

International

Cycling Weekly pens an ode to the iconic Shimano 105 groupset.

Momentum offers advice on how to dodge a right hook on your bike commute. My best advice is don’t trust any driver, and expect any car on your left to suddenly cut you off.

Toronto’s Biking Lawyer calls on the city to ban right turns on red lights, arguing that someone’s life could be at stake, a year after a young woman was killed while riding her bike in a crosswalk by a driver making an illegal right turn. Although the fact that it was already illegal didn’t seem to stop that driver.

Bicycling reports on Amsterdam-based TV cycling journalist Orla Chennaoui’s decision not to wear a helmet when she rides her own bike. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

 

Competitive Cycling

Bad news for cycling fans, as the GCN+ service and GCN App will be kaput as of December 20th.

 

Finally…

Your next T-shirt could feature a cat in a bike basket. Your next hot pink e-cargo bike could fight cancer. Your next energy gel could be a packet of Heinz.

And your next pizza could come on an ebike with a built-in pizza oven.

Assuming you like mediocre pizza, that is.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Newsom’s veto could mean tickets for seeking sidewalk safety, and LA Times calls out California’s roadway climate fail

No surprise here.

Both Calbike and CABO responded to Governor Gavin Newsom’s veto of a bill that would have legalized sidewalk riding on any street without adequate bike lanes.

And needless to say, they came out on opposite sides of the issue.

Calbike, aka the California Bicycle Coalition, decried the veto, arguing that sidewalk riding may not be the best choice, but it’s sometimes the only safe one.

“Is sidewalk riding ideal? No,” said Jared Sanchez, policy director for CalBike. “In a perfect world, most streets would be Complete Streets, with safe facilities for all modes of transportation. But that’s not the reality today, and it will take years to transform every dangerous roadway in California into a safe route for biking. In the meantime, people on bikes must, at times, travel on streets with fast traffic and no bike lanes. By vetoing this bill, the governor has taken an action that will lead to more deaths and injuries of people on bikes.”

While CalBike agrees with the governor’s assertion in his veto statement that building better bike infrastructure is the best way to provide safe spaces for people who ride bikes and that the state has moved in the right direction to create more protected and connected bikeways, infrastructure for safe biking remains woefully inadequate.

Meanwhile CABO — the California Association of Bicycle Organizations — applauded the governor’s veto.

An open letter from Alan Wachtel, Government Relations Director for CABO, pointed out the dangers of bicycling on sidewalks, both for bike riders and pedestrians.

While my organization and I appreciate the author’s intent to improve bicycle safety, this bill would instead have exactly the opposite effect. It would encourage dangerous bicycling habits, and it would constitute a huge step backward in the goal of routinely accommodating bicycle travel everywhere in the transportation network. Unfortunately, the author’s office has repeatedly declined to meet with us even to discuss these issues.

Under existing Vehicle Code §21650(g) (which I helped to draft), bicyclists may already ride on sidewalks everywhere, unless prohibited by the code or local ordinance. AB 825 would eliminate that local power unless the adjacent roadway includes a designated bicycle facility, except for last-minute amendments that provide complicated exceptions meant to protect pedestrians (but that are inadequate to do so).

But AB 825, despite being promoted as a bicycle safety bill, would, on the contrary, also be more dangerous for bicyclists. It relies on and actively perpetuates the misconception that the only safe places for bicycles are designated facilities and sidewalks.

This may be the rare instance where they’re both at least partly right.

CABO is correct that bikes don’t normally belong on sidewalks, where they pose a danger to pedestrians and an increased risk to bike riders, despite the perception of safety.

But it’s also true that a sidewalk can provide a refuge from dangerous roadways lacking safe infrastructure — especially the typical suburban California stroads, where riders often have to contend with speeding drivers exceeding the already high speed limits.

It’s also demanding too much to expect an inexperienced bike rider to take the lane on a busy street filled with impatient and distracted drivers.

It’s unreasonable to ticket someone for putting their own safety ahead of any local restrictions under those, or similar, circumstances.

Or to expect someone on a bicycle to always know when they’ve crossed from one city where sidewalk riding is allowed, to another where it’s prohibited, particularly when the restriction isn’t posted.

Then there’s the problem the bill was originally drafted to address, where police too often use sidewalk riding restrictions as a pretext to stop and search, or merely harass, people of color.

I always encourage people to ride their bikes in the street, both for their own safety, and that of people walking on the sidewalk.

But I understand if they choose not to, as I have myself for short distances, or when faced with dangerous situations on the street.

And penalizing them for making that choice is wrong — as was Newsom’s veto of the bill.

Besides, we all know sidewalks are really just parking spots for entitled drivers.

……..

The get it.

An editorial from the Los Angeles Times called out California’s transportation policies, arguing that the state’s highway spending doesn’t match it’s climate promises.

Then again, that’s what we’ve come to expect from the auto-centric Caltrans, despite its repeated commitments to Complete Streets and active transportation.

Two recent reports highlight the discrepancy. Regulators have warned that the state needs to slash the amount of miles people drive 25% below 2019 levels to help meet 2030 emission reduction targets. But traffic and car dependence has increased in recent years, according to a report from the progressive advocacy group NextGen Policy.

It’s no surprise why: California continues to spend the bulk of its transportation dollars to maintain and expand car-centric roads and freeways. Instead of doubling down on the existing system that makes it inconvenient and unsafe to travel by bike, foot and transit, California should be spending the bulk of its transportation funding to remake the urban landscape so people have real choices in how they get around.

But that’s not happening. Of the state’s primary transportation funding programs, just 19% of the money has gone to projects that help reduce the need to drive, such as building out bike lanes, sidewalks, rail service, electric buses and affordable housing near jobs, according to an analysis by the Natural Resources Defense Council. These programs are in such demand that the state is regularly forced to deny funding to highly rated pedestrian and bicycle projects.

It’s worth reading the whole piece, because they’re right.

Caltrans continues to flush massive amounts of funding down the highway widening toilet, addicted to the never-ending chase to fix traffic congestion while fueling induced demand.

And like any other addict, the only solution is to quit.

………

It looks like Amazon’s Prime Days, which concludes today, is the bike world’s new October Black Friday.

………

Road.cc pits a $15,000 superbike against a $430 find from Facebook Marketplace to determine how much speed money can actually buy.

And concludes that it does make a difference, but not as much as you might think.

………

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

A Cambridge, Massachusetts newspaper says a court heard rehashed arguments in yet another lawsuit fighting the city’s separated bike lanes, after the city has already won preliminary injunctions and subsequent appeals in two similar cases.

A Streetsblog op-ed calls out a proposal supported by a majority of New councilmembers to license all ebike riders, which would create a bureaucratic nightmare and discourage ebike use, while ignoring the lackluster infrastructure and unsafe work standards at the root of the problem.

New Yorkers rode their “little bikes” last night in protest of the mayor’s derisive comments about being able to ride their “little bikes” safely thanks to him, at a time when the city’s bicycling deaths are up dramatically.

………

Local 

West Hollywood sheriff’s deputies reported three collisions involving pedestrians last month and four involving people on bicycles, while stating that enforcing the city’s restrictions on sidewalk riding is a low priority; it’s legal to ride on the sidewalk on any WeHo street without a bike lane.

 

State

Chinese ebike maker Velotric is offering discounts up to 20% to students, staff and faculty at UC San Diego, while the campus expands bike lockers and protected bike lanes.

San Marcos is getting a new eight-acre bike park, including a pump track, perimeter trail and jump lines for beginner, intermediate and advanced riders.

The campus police chief at UC Santa Cruz warns students about the growing bike theft problem at the school, while offering tips on how to keep your bike safe.

 

National

Electrek applauds Seattle’s cute little electric bike lane sweepers.

Denver drivers can’t seem to figure out how a traffic diverter works, continuing through on the wide bike lane instead of following the really big arrows on the street directing them to turn. Although the city deserves a lot of the blame for leaving enough room in the bike lane for cars to enter.

A 28-year old Denver man is nearly 8,000 miles into an effort to visit every US National Park in the Lower 48 states on one continuous bicycle trip; so far he’s made it to just 19 of the 51 parks on his itinerary.

A writer for Kansas’ Rider University student paper describes how a bright blue bicycle took him from an awkward 16-year old kid stuck at home during the pandemic, to a bike-riding man about campus.

This is why we need to ban right turns on red lights. A Kansas driver was caught on video slamming into a bike rider, who had waited until it appeared to be safe before crossing in a crosswalk with the light, and was right hooked by the driver after riding off the curb.

Road diets in Philadelphia led to a 34% decrease in fatalities on the city’s recently constructed Complete Streets.

Abandoned bikeshare bikes continue to litter a South Carolina town after the city’s provider shut down last spring.

 

International

Momentum says riding in a dress this fall is not as difficult as you might think.

A member of Britain’s Conservative Party says he will continue to call for a mandatory bike helmet law in Parliament, despite his own party repeatedly rejecting the proposal.

The mayor of Manilla’s Quezon City returned from a trip to Copenhagen, vowing to use the Danish city’s bicycle-friendly infrastructure as a role model to make her town the bicycling capital of the Philippines.

An Aussie bike advocacy group condemned video of an “entitled” SUV driver crossing the double yellow lines to pass both a bike rider and a second driver who was patiently following the bicyclist waiting for a safe opportunity to pass.

 

Competitive Cycling

Belgian pro Nathan Van Hooydonck says he immediately knew his cycling career was over when he was nearly killed in a car crash after suffering a heart problem while driving; he retired after waking from a coma and being fitted with an internal defibrillator to correct any future cardiac arrhythmia.

 

Finally…

Why settle for being a coffee roaster or a wrench when you can do both? That feeling when the heroine who defends you from bike thieves is an angry mom with a spade.

And why just ride on rubber when you can put the rubber to the rubber?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

LA suggests un-Healthy Streets alternative, LADOT commits climate arson, and drivers back it up on Ventura Blvd

My apologies if you received an email with just the barest outline of a post earlier.

I seem to have had a twitchy publish button finger.

………

Somehow, you knew this was going to happen.

A full year after the Los Angeles City Council rejected the proposed Healthy Streets LA ordinance, the city has finally come back with their long-awaited alternative version.

And suffice it to say it leaves a lot to be desired.

The original measure, which easily qualified for next year’s ballot, requires the city to build out the already-approved Mobility Plan 2035, which subsumed the 2010 Bike Plan, any time a street in the plan gets resurfaced or resealed with slurry.

The council had the option of approving it as written, or sending it to a vote of the people.

They chose the latter, while promising to come back within weeks with an even better, new and improved version of their own.

You can guess how that turned out.

According to an analysis of the proposal from Streets For All, who wrote the original ballot measure, the city changed the requirement from covering any resurfacing over 1/8 of a mile to 1/4 of a mile, which they say would exclude 80% of the projects in the Mobility Plan’s Neighborhood Enhanced Network, as well as removing slurry seals from the plan.

Correction: I originally wrote that the change to 1/4 mile would exclude 80% of the projects, which was a misreading of the text on my part. I have corrected the paragraph above to more accurately reflect the effect of the change.

Then there’s this.

When defining “standard elements” it was interesting that the City Attorney didn’t simply say “the improvements in the Mobility Plan” but said that it’s the improvements that the Board of Public Works, Director of City Planning and General Manager designate for inclusion in a Project.” In other words, if any of those entities don’t “designate” an improvement to be included in a Project, then it’s excluded, and a bike or bus lane is ignored. This is the first “out” the City has given itself, and it’s a big one.

But wait, there’s more, as they say in the world of informercials.

This next section is a doozy. It basically says that the General Manager of LADOT and Director of City Planning — in “consultation” with LAPD, LAFD, and the City Attorney (three entities often hostile to bike and bus lanes in the first place) — can “revise” Mobility Corridors. In other words, they’re usurping City Council’s authority over the Mobility Plan and taking it for themselves. It’s a dangerous precedent to set that City departments can change the City’s General Plan without Council, and especially dangerous to put it in the hands of LAPD, LAFD, and this City Attorney (who has implied the City shouldn’t be at fault for pedestrian deaths even if the City has failed to implement its own Vision Zero or Mobility Plan 2035 plans).

Read that again.

The city’s revised version would remove the requirement to include any street or project in the already-approved Mobility Plan, and replace with the judgement of city officials likely to be hostile to any changes.

The city version goes on to include a public outreach process, which has too often been gamed by city officials to kill projects they don’t like, or are afraid to implement.

Like shovel-ready lane reductions on Lankershim, North Figueroa and Temple Street, just to name a few.

Streets For All ends their insightful analysis this way.

So what is our overall take on the City’s version? It’s full of holes, exceptions, and bureaucracy, and is not an attempt to actually implement the Mobility Plan during repaving; it’s an attempt to look like it’s doing something, while actually continuing to mostly ignore the Mobility Plan. It also does not address any of the equity additions (former Council President Nury Martinez) had promised, nor does it establish a centralized office of coordination, or provide for a multi year funding plan.

In other words, it’s not nearly good enough. We have raised more than $2,000,000 to get our ballot measure across the finish line this spring. Our polling shows an overwhelming number of Angelenos are sick of the status quo — and will support Healthy Streets LA at the ballot box. If you’re ready for change, join us! You can stay up-to-date, volunteer, donate, and get involved on our website.

See you at the ballot box.

And in the meantime, contact your councilmember to let them know the city’s proposal is dead in the water.

………

LADOT appears to be committed to committing climate arson.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports Los Angeles continues to widen streets throughout the city, calling out more than a dirty dozen streets that will soon have more room — and in most cases, more lanes — for motor vehicles.

In fact, Linton lists a full fifteen streets either currently being expanded or set for expansion, at a total cost of more than $218 million.

Although that’s barely a fifth of what the city is spending to give raises to the LAPD.

Some folks out there may be under the mistaken impression that Los Angeles is not really widening roads any more. Though widening roads is counterproductive in many ways, it has long been and continues to be an incessant L.A. City practice.

Streets for All founder Michael Schneider terms L.A. City road widening “the opposite of fighting climate change,” noting that “widening streets induces more driving, meaning more pollution burden locally and more greenhouse emissions further harming the climate.” Widening is expensive, and adversely impacts safety, health, climate, air, water, noise, housing, historic preservation, and more.

That money could make a sizable dent in the city’s bike plan, which could actually get some of those cars off the streets, rather than flushing more money down the toilet by funding still more induced demand.

This far into the 21st Century, it should be clear that we can’t build our way out of traffic congestion.

And that fighting climate change will require getting people out of their cars, and onto their feet or bikes, and into transit.

Widening streets is the exact opposite of what we should be doing.

………

Reverse angled parking is supposed to improve safety for people on bicycles by improving sightline for drivers pulling out of spaces.

But the new configuration on western Ventura Blvd isn’t exactly winning rave reviews, as bicyclists complain about drivers using the bike lanes to back into parking spaces, as well as double parking to wait for a space to open up, forcing riders out into unforgiving traffic.

https://twitter.com/gatodejazz/status/1695998850182660507

………

Santa Monica is improving safety on deadly Wilshire Blvd by making several cross streets right turn only.

………

CicLAvia’s North Hollywood CicLAmini along the Lankershim Blvd corridor is less than four weeks away.

The good news is you can just step off the B (Red) Line subway at the NoHo station and you’re there.

………

OC bike advocate Mike Wilkinson forwards evidence of why you should always hesitate pulling out from a red light, until you know every driver in every direction is coming to a stop.

………

If you build it, they will come.

………

Remember this the next time someone questions why bike riders insist on riding in the street.

Or better yet, just send it to them.

………

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

Maybe starting the Vuelta in the Catalonia region wasn’t the best idea, as someone tried to sabotage the complicated second stage by tossing tacks and nails on the course, flattening the tires of around 15 cyclists.

An “arrogant” road-raging driver — and possible government employee — in the Philippines assaulted a man riding a bicycle, then pulled out a gun and aimed it at the victim before cooler heads apparently prevailed.

………

Local 

Beverly Hills is looking for your input on the parking-protected bike lane pilot project on Roxbury Drive, as they consider making the bike lane permanent.

Police in Long Beach are looking for a pair of robbers who fired a gun as they struggled with a man to steal his bicycle along the Los Angeles River bike path Thursday night; the thieves eventually ran off without the bike.

 

State

Video from a TikTok user shows people in San Diego standing by and watching as a man steals a woman’s bike in broad daylight, calling it an example of the Bystander Effect. Then again, the person taking the video didn’t intervene, either. 

Sad news from Sacramento, where a woman riding a bicycle was killed by a hit-and-run driver.

 

National

US colleges are beginning to ban ebikes due to a fear of fire risk as well as a risk to pedestrians. After all, it makes so much more sense to force students and faculty back into their cars, which evidently don’t pose a greater risk to anyone. Right?

The Better Business Bureau offers tips tips to help you pick the right ebike for your budget.

Bike Rumor offers their picks for Best in Show at Portland’s MADE handmade bike show; Velo offers their favorites, too.

Cycling Weekly visits MADE to examine the new Moots prototype spec’ed with 750D wheels, asking if we really need another wheel diameter standard.

A Seattle website profiles Seattle Bike Blog author Tom Fucoloro, who has a new book examining the city from behind the handlebars.

My hometown paper offers highlights from the massive turnout for the country’s last remaining Tour de Fat.

This is the cost of traffic violence. Sixty-four-year old John Kezdy, the lead singer of the ’80s punk band The Effigies, died on Saturday, three days after he was critically injured crashing his bike into an Amazon van illegally parked in a Chicago bike lane. The inevitable lawsuit will be just the cost of business for the online shopping giant.

It’s apparently open season on bike riders at Indiana University, as three students who participated in the iconic Little 500 bike race were hit by drivers in three days last week; the race was made famous in Breaking Away.

There’s a special place in hell for the hit-and-run driver who left a 12-year old Boston-area boy bleeding alone in the streets. Or any other kid, for that matter. 

A writer for The New York Times says he improved his mental and physical health by ditching his car and walking to biking to run errands, though he suggests that anyone wanting to emulate him may not want to start with a trip to Costco. Thanks to Bike Talk’s Taylor Nichols, who suggests getting writer Andrew Leonard to appear on the show, for the heads-up.

A Long Island woman faces charges for slamming into a triathlete as he rode his bike in the middle of a race, after pulling out of a parking lot at a high rate of speed and onto the race course that had been closed to traffic.

The AP offers not necessarily safe for work video from the Philadelphia World Naked Bike Ride.

This is who we share the road with. A road-raging Philadelphia driver with a concealed carry permit pulled out a gun and began firing after his car was surrounded by dirt bike riders on an apparent rideout, shooting one man before he was wounded by return fire.

 

International

Evidently, you can kill a man on a fundraising bike ride while driving drunk, bury his body a shallow grave on a remote Scottish estate for three years, and get off with just 12 years behind bars — and could get out in as little as six. And get just five years and three months for helping your brother hide the body.

BBC host and bicycling advocate Jeremy Vine causes a stir in the UK by saying drivers should pull over and let bicyclists pass in urban centers, since people on bicycles can often travel faster than people in cars — and that drivers shouldn’t be allowed to pass bicyclists at all. Finally, a campaign platform I can get behind.  

Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is one of us, after he posted video of going on a cargo bike ride with his twins while vacationing in Yorkshire, England. From the looks of it, the bike was almost as long as his name. 

GCN shares the “most bizarre and beautiful” bikes from last week’s Paris-Brest-Paris.

A Nigerian website says bicycling is a must if the country hopes to “be rid of hydra-headed transportation gridlock that often sends road users to nightmarish spasm.”

Giant Taiwanese bikemaker Giant warns customers that a scam website posing as the bike brand may be ripping off consumers.

 

Competitive Cycling

Jonas Vingegaard and Remco Evenepoel said enough is enough and intentionally slowed the peloton after a crash by Primož Roglič in Sunday’s stage 2 of the Vuelta; Italy’s Andrea Piccolo took the leader’s red jersey as Denmark’s Andreas Kron won the day on a stage shortened by flooding near rate finish.

Britain’s William Bjegfelt just won the Paracycling World Championships after he was told he’d never walk or bike again following a head-on collision with a driver in 2015.

L39ION of Los Angeles cyclists Kendall Ryan and Ty Magner wons the elite women’s and men’s races, respectively, at the IU Momentum Health Indy Crit in Indianapolis on Saturday.

Cycling Weekly takes a look at the alternative, off-road race scene in the UK.

More bad news, in what has been an unbelievably tragic year for pro and amateur cyclists, as 22-year old Belgian rider Tijl De Decke was killed when he crashed into the back of a car on a training ride.

 

Finally…

You may have to blow up your next bike helmet. That feeling when the man accused of stealing your bicycle finally gets arrested — 38 years later.

And they get it.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Proposed ebike bill won’t require a license to ride ebikes — for now, and recent deaths offer extreme heat warning

Let’s start with a quick update on AB 530, the new ebike bill sponsored by Encinitas Assemblymember Tasha Boerner.

Yesterday I received clarification that the bill doesn’t currently call for ebike licenses, but rather requires that anyone over 16 carry some form of photo ID whenever they ride an ebike.

Which means that anyone without a valid driver’s license will need to have a state ID, or a student or work ID with a photo. Or maybe start carrying a passport when you ride an ebike, even if you’re not planning to cross any international borders.

However, it does call for establishing a working group with a goal of creating a license for ebike riders.

So no ebike licenses for now. But no guarantees down the road, either.

And despite my misreading of the bill, it doesn’t require a bike helmet for Class 3 ebikes capable of speeds up to 28 mph, since that’s already state law.

Image by Maxfoot from Pixabay.

………

Yesterday, we learned that a 24-year old mountain biker died after apparently succumbing to extreme heat in the desert east of San Diego, shortly after helping rescue hikers who had become stranded without food or water.

That comes just a day after we mentioned that an Arizona man in his 70s had died of heat-related causes after his bike suffered a flat, and he attempted to walk to a nearby fire station to wait for his wife.

Both serve as tragic reminders of the dangers of the current extreme heat wave gripping the Southwest, which is only predicted to get worse over the coming weekend.

So if you can, try to avoid riding in the heat of the day. Schedule your rides for early in the morning before the heat of the day, or in the evening after the relentless pounding of the sun lets up.

If you do have to ride during the day, try to choose a route closer to the coast, where the air is cooler, or seek out shaded areas as much as possible.

If you have to ride in the city, remember that concrete buildings and dark road surfaces radiate heat far in excess of the already high ambient temperatures.

Wherever you ride, take more water than you think you’ll need, and take frequent breaks in shaded areas.

And remember that a simple mechanical can ruin even the most cautious plans, and keep you out in the sun far longer than intended.

………

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

A bike rider in Queens, New York managed to evade pursuing cops in a patrol car, as players and spectators at a local baseball game all stopped to watch.

………

Local 

The NoHo Arts District asks if LA’s Mobility Plan 2035 will increase bike and pedestrian safety in Los Angeles, after the plan was approved by the city council eight years ago. Short answer — not unless it’s actually implemented, which seems pretty damn unlikely at this point.

Westside Today examines Culver City’s newly enhanced Higuera Street Bridge, which they say prioritizes bicyclists and pedestrians. If they really want to prioritize people walking and riding bikes, get rid of the damn cars.

 

State

Sheriff’s deputies in Hesperia will conduct a bike and pedestrian safety operation on Wednesday. So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limit line, so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero, as a passing bicyclist warned Fresno residents that their home was on fire, and helped one person evacuate the burning home.

A temporary bike path opening this week will restore a bicycling route between Novato and Petaluma closed by a landslide due to storm damage.

A Bay Area television station argues that the bike lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge remains severely underutilized as it nears the end of a four year pilot program; officials bizarrely claim the bike lane is causing pollution, instead of all those people in the big, smelly machines. Once again mistaking the solution for the problem. 

San Francisco public radio station KQED California talks with bike and transportation leaders about how the state can become safer for bicyclists.

 

National

Bicycling looks at the health benefits of riding a bicycle for older people. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

The family of fallen masters champ Gwen Inglis won’t oppose a request from Lakewood, Colorado officials to remove her ghost bike, after a single complaint from someone who said it made them feel uncomfortable. Because God knows, we wouldn’t want to do that. 

A St. Paul, Minnesota columnist calls the city’s new bike plan “relentlessly ambitious,” while revealing the tension between more expensive protected bike lanes and cheaper quick-build projects.

A St. Paul teenager completed an around the world bike tour, riding through 20 countries in 22 months.

Arkansas officials unveiled plans for a $278 million, 200-mile bikeway connecting four counties in the central part of the state.

More fallout from PeopleForBikes latest ranking of urban bikeability, as Chicago ranked among the nation’s most dangerous cities for people on two wheels, coming in at a pitiful 161st out of 163 big cities.

Heartbreaking news from Indiana, where a Roman Catholic priest who was killed while riding his bicycle last year was credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor.

Sad news from New York State, where a man participating in the eight-day Erie Canal Bike Tour was found dead in his tent Sunday morning.

Friends and fellow bicyclists remember 27-year-old Dzhoy Zuckerman, after the purple-clad fixture of the DC bicycling community was murdered just blocks from his home.

 

International

Inside EVs asks if ebike digital drives could mark the end of sprockets and chains.

Spain’s upcoming national elections put bike lanes and low-emission zones in the crosshairs of rightist-run cities, with the most likely outcome a coalition government that could reverse the county’s progress on climate goals.

 

Competitive Cycling

Velo examines how Tour de France leader Jonas Vingegaard shelved the race-ruining anxiety that made him the “worst guy in the peloton to become the “silent assassin” known as the Iceman in just five years.

Five Americans remain in the Tour de France peloton as the race enters its last week, with Sepp Kuss nearing a top ten finish as Vingegaard’s right handlebar man, and Neilson Powless in position to become the first US rider to win the King of the Mountains jersey.

Cyclists participating in the Tour asked fans to behave better, after a selfie-taking spectator hit Sepp Kuss’ handlebars on Sunday, causing a massive pileup.

Road.cc examines what makes a time trial bike so fast. Nothing, if I’m riding it. 

Former pro cyclists weigh in on whether the Netflix Tour de France documentary Unchained can grow bicycling in the US.

Transgender women’s cycling champ Austin Killips accused UCI of caving to a cabal of right-wingers, after the international governing body for cycling banned transgender women who transitioned after puberty from participating in women’s races.

 

Finally…

Why rough it when you can go bike glamping by pulling your own camper behind your bike? That feeling when the annual mountain bike race gets cancelled because of snow — in July.

And you might be able to buy a Tesla ebike one day.

But then you’d have to ride it.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin.

More on Fountain Valley hit-and-run, Boerner pulls Stop As Yield bill — again, and this is who we share the road with

This is the face of hit-and-run.

It’s not often that we learn what happened to a crash victim after the initial news stories.

If it even makes the news, that is.

But we’re learning a lot more about the bike-riding victim of a Fountain Valley hit-and-run driver, who barely survived the initial impact.

We gave the hit-and-run a brief mention on Monday, based on the limited information that was available at the time.

Fountain Valley police are looking for the hit-and-run driver who critically injured a 20-year old Huntington Beach man when he was rear ended while riding in a bike lane in the Orange County city on the 4th of July.

Since then, KABC-7 has added more information to the story, including identifying the victim as 20-year old Huntington Beach resident Caysen Robinson.

They place the crash at 10:30 pm on Tuesday the 4th, when Robinson was run down from behind as he was riding in the northbound bike lane on Bushard Street.

A crowdfunding campaign started by the victim’s family to help pay his medical expenses reports Robinson’s heart was ruptured when he was literally run over by the driver’s SUV, surviving only because one of the first people on the scene had medical training.

He was rushed into surgery, where doctor’s were able to repair his heart, despite suffering an injury with a less than 1% survival rate.

They add this about his ongoing injuries —

Caysen was in a medically induced coma and put on a ventilator. Drs weaned him off, and he had surgery for a compound fracture of his tibia. Caysen still needs surgery for the 4 facial fractures. Today Caysen had unidentified pain in his shoulder and wrist, and Drs are looking into additional broken or fractured bones.

According to his family, Robinson is facing a long road to recovery.

Police are looking for the driver of a possible 2014-2019 Toyota Highlander. Anyone with information is urged to call the Traffic Bureau with the Fountain Valley Police Department at 714/593-4481.

The crowdfunding campaign for Caysen Robinson has raised nearly 80% of the $50,000 goal — an amount that is likely to barely put a dent in the hospital and therapy bills illegally left on his battered shoulders by the heartless coward who left him lying broken in the street.

So if you’ve got any extra cash lying around, they could certainly use the help.

Photo from the GoFundMe page for Caysen Robinson. Thanks to Bill Sellin for the heads-up. 

………

Once again, California’s proposed Stop As Yield law, aka the Safety Stop or Idaho Stop Law, has failed to become law, as Assemblymember Tasha Boerner pulled the bill from consideration for the second year in a row without explanation, after a pair of previous attempts were vetoed by Gavin Newsom.

And yes, that’s the same Tasha Boerner who pledged to introduce a bill mandating licensing for ebike riders; we should have more on that tomorrow.

Meanwhile, a number of bills were passed out of committee in the state Senate, including —

  • AB 645 creating a speed cam pilot program in six California cities, including Los Angeles, Long Beach and Glendale;
  • AB 413 mandating daylighting at intersections to improve safety;
  • AB 825 to legalize sidewalk riding anywhere in California that lacks good bike infrastructure (and no, sharrows aren’t “good” bike infrastructure);
  • AB 7 requiring transportation and highway planners to align their work with the state’s climate goals;
  • and AB 610 to create statewide a youth transit pass program.

………

This is who we share the road with.

Part 1 — A 69-year old man was critically injured when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver in LA’s Pacoima neighborhood; the driver hit the victim as he was standing next to his car after drifting into the bike lane. As always, there is a standing $25,000 reward for any hit-and-run resulting in serious injuries in the City of Los Angeles.

Part 2 — A Pennsylvania driver faces charges for killing a 54-year old man during a New York road rage confrontation, accelerating into the victim after he got out of his truck to slash the Pennsylvania man’s tires; witnesses absolved the killer, saying he acted in self-defense to protect two young girls in his car.

Part 3 — A 75-year old man was killed, and a 13-year old girl was injured, when a driver fleeing a traffic stop by the Secret Service plowed through a crowded DC crosswalk; at last report, police were still looking for the driver.

………

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

Police on Michigan’s Mackinac Island are impounding ebikes belonging to visitors who break the strict rules on the carfree island, where only Class 1 ped-assist ebikes are allowed, and all ebikes must be licensed on the island.

A Toronto bike rider complains he was almost killed by someone driving nearly 40 mph in a bollard-protected bike lane, who couldn’t comprehend that what they were doing was wrong when he confronted them.

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

Spain’s Ecological Transition Minister was subjected to well-deserved criticism for virtue signaling for riding her bike to a climate summit, after she was seen removing it from the trunk of her car a just mile away — and escorted to the meeting by security vehicles front and rear.

………

Local 

Metro, LADOT, Walk ‘N Rollers and BikeLA are hosting a community meeting tonight at the Helms Design Center in Culver City to consider first and last mile connections to the Culver City Metro Station; this comes after Culver City’s newly conservative city council voted to remove the highly successful Move Culver City protected bike lanes through the downtown area. Which is probably the most I’ve ever used Culver City in a single sentence.

Santa Monica Daily Press says the city still has a way to go to meet its Vision Zero commitment to eliminate traffic deaths by 2026. But unlike its much larger neighbor to the east, they’re actually trying to. And could.

 

State

Kids and teenagers in Temecula caught riding a bicycle with their helmet on will be rewarded with gift certificates to local restaurants, cookie shops and ice cream parlors. And Staples.

Good for them. Caltrans took Palo Alto residents by surprise with plans to install bike lanes on El Camino Real after repaving the street, which received a lukewarm response from local officials — but since it’s a state highway, they may be powerless to stop it. Now do PCH through Malibu, which is also a state highway.

Sad and infuriating news from Northern California, where an Oakland man was killed by a hit-and-run driver in a stolen car Wednesday morning. And a San Jose woman died five days after she was struck by a hit-and-run driver while riding her bike.

Sacramento’s Sactown Magazine talks with former Vancouver chief city planner Brent Toderian, who has become a star consulting planner in the years since, and is now working with the California city.

Yosemite National Park — or Yo Semite as our former president once called it — is addressing the crushing traffic congestion caused by tourists cars by introducing a free bikeshare system.

 

National

I want to be like them when I grow up. An Ohio newspaper talks with a couple in their 70s who were riding their tandem home to Iowa after visiting their son in Virginia — which is nothing compared to their 4,500-mile Washington to Maine cross-country ride.

A Seattle man settled a lawsuit with the city for $10 million, six years after he crashed into a metal bollard placed in the middle of a bike path to keep drivers from using it, breaking his neck and leaving him a quadriplegic.

Seattle’s Rad Power Bikes is following up on its withdrawal from Europe with its fifth round of layoffs in just over two years.

Dueling demonstrations took place between people for and against a planned road diet in Boston’s West Roxbury neighborhood, although only 50 people turned out to protest it. Someone should tell them that road diets and protected bike lanes have been shown to increase sales and reduce retail vacancies, while improving safety for all road users.

A Florida TV station remembers Miami’s Jack the Bike Man after the local legend passed away at 81; he led a nonprofit that gave away thousands of refurbished bikes to kids and adults in need each year.

 

International

A writer for Cycling Weekly found deals on five fully-built bikes he says are better than anything you could have found on the recent Amazon Prime Days.

Toronto’s new mayor is one of us, as she rides her bike to work on her first day.

London is making permanent a popup, bi-directional protected bike lane, despite criticism from conservative politicians and an almost even number of comments for and against it.

No surprise here, as Dutch ebike-maker VanMoof has filed for bankruptcy protection after suspending operations earlier in the week; if the company goes out of business, the bikes’ app-based connected functionality may be bricked.

An investigative journalism foundation takes a long look at why bicycling continues to claim lives on Nigerian roads.

Philippine news anchor Gretchen Ho is one of us, laughing off a “really bad” fall off her bike while riding in Switzerland; she appeared to suffer minor injuries, while, in typical bicyclist fashion, she expressed more concern for her bike and GoPro.

 

Competitive Cycling

Jasper Phillipson sprinted to victory in Wednesday’s stage of the Tour de France, giving him over a third of the eleven stages so far.

Velo examines the diverging trajectories of back-to-back U-23 world champs Quinn Simmons and Remco Evenepoel, as the Belgian star has shined on the world stage, while the American faded into the pro peloton until he won the US national road championship, just ten days after directing rescuers to fallen cyclist Gino Mäder in the Tour de Suisse.

Velo also discusses how their competitors plan to reel in Tadej Pogačar and Jonas Vingegaard, as the former winners threaten to ride away with this year’s Tour de France.

Tuesday’s stage victory by Bahrain Victorious rider Pello Bilbao was hailed by His Majesty the King’s Representative for Humanitarian Work and Youth Affairs His Highness Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa of Bahrain. They probably would have given him a longer title, but couldn’t think of anything else to add.

Bicycling reports Costa Rican cyclist Andrey Amador overcame overwhelming odds to lead Wednesday’s stage 11 of the Tour, before dropping off the podium; the 36-year old rider was severely beaten, robbed and left for dead a dozen years earlier. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

 

Finally…

How to inflate anything without a bike pump — except bike tires, or course. That feeling when you turn your bike into a car.

And in this country, it’s script writers — and now actors — on strike; in the UK, it’s bicycling instructors.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin.

Newsom kills funding for CA ebike rebates beyond 1st year, and Bixby bike-ped path opens on Gateway bridge this weekend

It was nice while it lasted.

California’s long-delayed ebike rebate program, which hasn’t even begun yet, is already at risk after Governor Newsom failed to extend funding for the program beyond this year in his revised budget.

Calbike reports that over 17,000 people have expressed interest in the program, which only has $7.5 million left for actual rebates after the state has blown through $2.5 million of the original $10 million budget on outreach and overhead.

Which is kind of what happens when you spend a couple years dithering about what it should look like, instead of just getting the money out to people who need it.

The remaining funds should be good for just 3,000 to 7,000 vouchers, meaning at least 10,000 people are likely to walk away empty handed and out of luck.

And most will probably keep driving, instead of switching to a far cleaner, cheaper and more efficient form of transportation.

The revised budget also includes cuts to Complete Streets and investments in disadvantaged communities. Which is exactly the opposite of what we should be doing in the midst of a climate crisis, when the state is literally burning and people are suffering.

And the opposite of Newsom’s campaign promises to confront the crisis.

Photo by Alex from Pexels.

………

The long-delayed Mark Bixby Memorial Bicycle Pedestrian Path is offically opening this weekend, along with the Ocean Boulevard Connector leading to it.

The bikeway on the new Long Beach International Gateway Bridge is named for Long Beach bike advocate Mark Bixby, scion of the city’s influential Bixby family, who was killed with four other people in a private plane crash a dozen years ago.

………

San Diego will now close Fifth Avenue in the city’s Gaslamp district to cars every afternoon and evening.

Because, apparently, they don’t do mornings down there.

Thanks to Glenn Crider for the heads-up.

………

More proof you can carry pretty much anything on a bicycle — despite the constant chorus of naysayers who insist you need a massive SUV to carry anything bigger than a coffee cup.

https://twitter.com/rendermack/status/1657509136614199297

………

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

We’re constantly reminded about stop sign-running bike riders as the reason we can’t have anything nice. But when someone on a bike runs a stop sign, they usually don’t kill anyone, unlike an on-duty DEA agent who was caught on video running a stop sign just before killing a Salem, Oregon man riding a bicycle.

No bias here. A Cambridge, Massachusetts letter writer says being bike friendly is a good thing, but the city is taking this whole bike safety thing too far, because some people might be inconvenienced, and stuff. Although getting killed or maimed by a driver is pretty damn inconvenient, too.

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

Five teenage bike riders were caught on security cams illegally riding through a Boston freeway tunnel, splitting traffic lanes and popping wheelies, to the chagrin of drivers behind them.

………

Local 

Burbank is hosting a pair of pit stops today for the city’s annual “Bike and Walk to Work Day.”

They get it. Alhambra residents stood up to object to the city’s proposed widening of Fremont Ave, along with the on and off ramps to the 10 Freeway, calling it a waste of the city’s share of Metro funds for the abandoned plans to extend the 710 Freeway.

 

State

Laguna Beach will host a bike safety expo this Sunday.

A 14-year old French Valley girl was airlifted to a hospital after suffering serious injuries when she was struck by a pickup driver while riding her bike in unincorporated Murrieta.

Even Bakersfield is hosting a series of bike events to mark Bike Month. Although closing the bike path to conduct “bug maintenance” probably wasn’t on their bike bingo card.

A 31-year old Fresno man was hospitalized with cuts and a broken leg after getting hit by a truck driver while allegedly riding salmon and running a red light.

A 4th generation San Franciscan, developer evangelist and substitute tennis coach writes glowingly about her first SF Bike Party, which is like Critical Mass, but more fun.

Writing for a nonprofit architecture and design site, a San Francisco architect says it’s time to consider the benefits of a 15 mph city.

 

National

The US Bureau of Statistics confirms that the pandemic bike boom was real, as spending on bikes and accessories jumped a whopping 640% over the past three years. And suggests this could be another banner year.

The Cherokee Nation announced the six women who will participate in this year’s Remember the Removal Bike Ride, ranging in age from 18 to 40; the ride follows the route of the horrific Trail of Tears, when tribal members were forcibly removed from their ancestral homes in the south, and made to march hundred of miles to new reservations.

A craniofacial trauma surgeon considers whether it’s worth spending a little more to get a MIPS bike helmet, and ends with a resounding yes.

After he was paralyzed in a snowboarding accident, a self-described adrenaline junkie finds the cure for his depression in riding an adaptive bicycle with a Washington state bike club.

A group of Houston bike riders will hold a ride and dine in support of a historic restaurant threatened by the real estate developer next door, who is blocking access to parking long used by restaurant patrons.

Authorities in Fargo, North Dakota are looking for a man who drove through a local bike race while leading a police chase last weekend; fortunately, no one appears to have been seriously injured.

A Congressional bill named for a fallen Wisconsin bicyclist would make it easier to use federal funds to build protected bike lanes; Sarah Debbink Langenkamp’s hometown officially endorsed the bill named for her.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever murdered a 56-year old Dayton, Ohio man, just 12 hours after he was bike-jacked at gunpoint and forced to walk ten blocks to report the crime.

CBS has picked up the story of the white hospital worker who tried to wrestle and whine a New York bikeshare bike out of the hands of the Black teenager who had rented it, saying the hospital she works for is looking into the incident. Which is probably bureaucratese for she can kiss her job goodbye.

They get it, too. DC bike advocates continue to fight for safer streets, despite the city’s backpedaling on a pair of planned protected bikeways, saying there can be no compromise on making biking and walking safer.

Speaking of DC, hats off to the lone bike rider who shouted down a group of white supremacists gathered for a march to the capital.

Forget tweed rides. Roanoke, Virginia is hosting a fancy dress bike ride this weekend, encouraging participants to don their finest and fanciest attire.

Kindhearted Georgia sheriff’s deputies replaced a 12-year old boy’s BMX bike after his was stolen.

Former NFL star Jimmy Graham is one of us, as he gets back on his bike after suffering cuts and bruises when a driver smashed into him in a SMIDSY* crash. *Sorry Mate, I Didn’t See You.

 

International

Canadian Cycling Magazine considers five goofy things non-bicycling people ask bicyclists, including “doesn’t your butt hurt,” and the ever-popular “why do you shave your legs.”

After a London van driver told bike-riding BBC presenter Jeremy Vine to fuck off, Vine responded by telling nearby pedestrians “He seems like the kind of guy who might not come to my birthday party.”

Bicycling considers what the bicycling mecca can teach the world — and the writer’s hometown — about bike infrastructure, reminding us that the Netherlands wasn’t always the bike-friendly paradise we see now. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Foldie maker Dahon wowed visitors to a Chinese bike show with they’re latest bikes and tech, including a new frame cable that reportedly makes single-bar folding bikes “more rigid, stronger and faster than some large-wheeled mountain bikes.”

 

Competitive Cycling

Denmark’s Magnus Cort Nielsen overcame the cold and wet weather to win Tuesday’s 10th stage of the Giro, as former Tour de France champ Geraint Thomas kept a tight grip on the pink leader’s jersey.

Movistar cyclist Will Barta managed to escape serious injury crashing on a wet descent in Tuesday’s 10th stage, but he can’t say the same for his bike, which snapped in two during a brush with a retaining wall.

Bicycling applauds 21-year old Dutch cyclist Puck Pieterse’s podium vibes, which she displays with increasing frequency competing in ‘cross, mountain biking and road racing. Read it on AOL if the magazine blocks you.

 

Finally…

Telling bike riders not to do something they wouldn’t do driving a car probably doesn’t have the intended impact, in a world where people do whatever the hell they want behind the wheel. Your next bike could have magnets instead of gears, or maybe not.

And if you get chased out the home you’re burglarizing, try not to leave your bike behind. And if you do, don’t go back for it.

……….

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Bass ignores mobility plan in State of City, MOVE removal violates CEQA, and LA Engineering greenwashes LOS climate fire

This doesn’t bode well.

Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass gave her first State of the City address yesterday, with a focus on the city’s efforts to build housing and end homelessness, as well as increasing the size of the LAPD, LAFD and 911 services to improve safety.

What Bass did not mention was traffic safety, Vision Zero, the mobility plan, bikes, pedestrians, transit or alternative transportation.

We’ll see where her priorities lie when she releases her first city budget this morning, and whether any of that will be given the funding they need.

But right now, it looks like we’re going to be an afterthought.

If that.

Photo by Aayush Srivastava from Pexels.

………

Carter Rubin of the Natural Resources Defense Council, aka NRDC, makes a compelling argument in favor of the very successful MOVE Culver City Complete Streets project.

And keeping it right where it is.

The project is under fire from the newly auto-centric conservative majority on the Culver City council, which wants to rip it out so cars can once again go zoom, zoom without having to make room for anyone else.

Here’s just a part of what Rubin has to say.

recent analysis of the corridor shows MOVE Culer City has delivered substantial benefits with few tradeoffs.

  • A 52% increase in bus ridership
  • A 32% increase in cycling activity
  • A 18% increase in pedestrian activity
  • Only a 2 minute increase in average peak period travel time for people in cars

Hard-won progress deserves defending. So this week, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) sent a letter to the City Council expressing our support for the MOVE Culver City initiative. In doing so, we joined over 20 other organizations that advocate for sustainable, safe, healthy and equitable transportation.

He also notes that removing the project could violate state environmental laws, as well as federal civil rights requirements.

In our letter, we make the case that any action by the city to increase the number of lane-miles available for mixed-flow vehicle traffic would require analysis, disclosure, and mitigation of potential environmental impacts pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). The City must comply with CEQA before making any final decision on a project that changes conditions on the ground today.

Full removal of MOVE Culver City would entail adding approximately 2.6 lane miles of vehicular lanes to principal arterial highways, which is likely to significantly increase vehicle miles traveled, according to the state’s official CEQA guidance. That increase in VMT would contribute to additional greenhouse gas emissions impacts, as well as criteria air pollution, including ozone, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and PM10 and PM2.5, from tailpipe exhaust and brake, tire, and roadway wear.

Further, we note that the City is required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act to analyze changes to transit service that might disproportionately affect people of color, immigrants and other protected communities who ride transit.

Or to put it more succinctly,

https://twitter.com/CarterRubin/status/1648064537290215424

………

They still don’t get it.

The Los Angeles Bureau of Engineering is proposing widening a one-mile section of Alameda Street in Wilmington near the Port of Los Angeles, increasing the street to three lanes in each direction to boost automotive throughput and the largely discredited Level of Service.

But they’re throwing us a bone by adding a bike and pedestrian trail to greenwash their work while they set the climate on fire.

Maybe they could just give us the trail, and skip the damn climate bonfire.

………

Go Human is awarding grants up to $40,000 to improve traffic safety in your own community.

………

Walk Bike Long Beach invites you to for a morning of bikes and coffee this Saturday.

Celebrate Earth Day this Saturday on your bike! We’ll do the usual group ride to get some coffee — this time aiming for Belmont Heights. Then back to Pedal Movement.

For EXTRA CREDIT, keep rolling with us and climb Signal Hill for a chat with the Sierra Club about the threat of future oil drilling in our community.

………

Nice to hear from our bike-riding state senator and Congressional candidate.

Now we just need to get the rest of ’em on bikes, too.

………

Hard to tell just where this is, but it looks like it might be the Santa Monica Civic Center complex.

Or maybe SaMo High.

………

In case you were looking for something to hang on the wall of my office, this will do nicely, thank you.

Of course, you’d also have to buy me an office.

………

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

No bias here. Officials in a Massachusetts town are up in arms after state officials begin work to remove a traffic lane and install bike lanes on a local bridge, insisting no one told them about the plans; one city councilmember actually insists there’s not enough bike traffic on the bridge to justify a bike lane, apparently forgetting that most people don’t enjoy risking their lives in traffic with safe infrastructure.

No bias here, either. A British Columbia letter writer complains that a “boondoggle” bike lane “smacks of ‘fiscal irresponsibility’ and ‘catering to cycling interests’ over the concerns of taxpayers,” apparently forgetting that people who ride bikes pay taxes, too.

………

Local 

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers photos from Sunday’s Pico Union meets Mid-City CicLAvia.

South Pasadena Active Streets was honored by state Assemblymember Mike Fong for their work organizing bike buses for local elementary school students.

The Pasadena Star News looks forward to this weekend’s 626 Golden Streets through San Dimas, La Verne, Pomona and Claremont in the San Gabriel Valley. Assuming you can get past the paper’s paywall, that is.

 

State

Bakersfield’s popular Kern River Bike Trail will be closed until further notice for maintenance work.

San Francisco moves to make the city less livable with a proposal to rip out the pandemic-era parklets in front of restaurants.

Speaking of San Francisco, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is calling for quick action on Arguello Blvd, where masters champ and world record holder Ethan Boyes was killed recently; the organization notes the Presidio street is used by hundreds of families, commuters and competitive athletes every day.

Just like the failure of the $1 billion 405 Freeway widening project here in Los Angeles, the engineer behind the Bay Area’s $600 million project to widen the 101 Freeway admits that it accomplished nothing, as traffic congestion goes from bad to worse. Just one more argument to invest in transit, rather than flushing more money down the toilet on highway projects. Or widening streets to move more cars.

 

National

Streetsblog complains that Biden’s EV Revolution will pay Americans to drive some really dangerous pickups and SUVS that pose a risk to everyone on the road around them, particularly people walking and biking.

The Washington Post reports that men face a higher risk of dying than women at every stage of life, with the male sex accounting for 71 percent of pedestrian deaths and a whopping 87 percent of bicyclist deaths.

Road Bike Rider explains how to pack for a bike tour, while Cycling Weekly offers lessons learned from going tubeless.

Cycling News considers the best budget bike helmets. But neglects to include any of those budget prices.

A lawyer offers advice on what to do after a hit-and-run or road rage incident. Or both.

The internet is still going crazy over the square, tread track bike wheels.

A 19-year old Bend, Oregon man is building his own sustainable mountain bike company.

A Las Vegas writer takes a pleasant bike ride through the city to examine new construction in preparation of this fall’s Formula 1 race.

Great idea. North Dakota fourth and fifth graders are teaching kindergarten kids how to ride bikes.

If you build it, they will come. Bike ridership is outpacing motor vehicle use in Ann Arbor, Michigan, thanks to new protected bike lanes and banning right on red in some locations.

Maine considers a Stop as Yield law, allowing people on bicycles to roll stop signs instead of coming to a full stop, when its safe to do so.

New York’s city council is considering new regulations to combat ebike and e-scooter battery fires.

Tragic news from Virginia, where a 26-year old woman was killed while she was teaching her 6-year old daughter how to ride a bike, along with her boyfriend; they were all run down from behind by a 36-year old woman.

A New Orleans driver faces up to 15 years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a “beloved” local butcher as he was riding his bike six years ago; no word on why it took so long to bring the man’s killer to justice.

 

International

Forbes considers the best bike computers. Even though the most enjoyable rides usually come when they’re broken.

Bikeshare is booming in Mexico City.

That’s more like it. A new British Columbia bill would require speed limiting devices on all heavy duty commercial trucks, while mandating a “safer road environment” for bike riders and pedestrians.

A new memorial bench handcrafted by a fellow bike rider honors a legendary Scottish man who wrote about bicycling for the local paper.

No surprise here, as a new report shows people in London’s poorest areas face the biggest risk of traffic injuries or death. Just like in Los Angeles, and most major cities. 

Next time you’re in the Dutch city of Nijmegen, make sure to stop at the Velorama National Bicycle Museum, the country’s only museum devoted to the invention and growth of the now-ubiquitous bicycle.

The hit-and-run epidemic has spread to Spain, where a British tourist was killed when he was run down by a heartless coward who fled the scene.

A Russian man is riding his bike around the world to promote traditional Turkish music.

 

Competitive Cycling

Russell Finsterwald and Heather Jackson claimed victory in the men’s and women’s elite categories in San Diego’s Belgian Waffle Ride, while the race retired the number 12 in honor of 2022 winner Moriah “Mo” Wilson, who was murdered in Austin, Texas last year.

It was another stage win for L39ION of Los Angeles cyclist Skylar Schneider, who won her second in a row to conclude the women’s Tour of Redlands, while Blue Ridge Twenty24’s Emily Ehrlich claimed the overall victory in the GC.

L39ion of Los Angeles founders Justin and Cory Williams announced the launch of their third co-ed, multi-racial city-based cycling team in Austin, Texas, following the launch of another team in Miami. They may be single-handedly — okay, double handedly — doing more to ensure the survival, growth and spread of cycling in this country than anyone else.

Bicycling explains the new National Cycling League and how it works, and whether it fulfills the promised fan-first professional cycling experience. Read it on AOL this time if the magazine blocks you.

 

Finally…

What good is a wearable computer if the health data thitey measures is wrong? When life gives you speeding drivers, give them your own DIY traffic sign saying “slow the f*ck down.”

And that feeling when you sprain your ankle falling off a bike just before your widely panned set at Coachella.

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Ramadan Mubarak to all observing the Islamic holy month. 

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.