Tag Archive for DTLA

Olive Street bike lane hits the street, vital bicyclists Black Lives Matter discussion, and parking in 7th Street bike lane

I give up. 

I’ve been battling low blood sugar for over four hours now, as I’ve struggled to finish today’s post. Despite my best efforts, I’ve finally reached the point where I have to throw in the towel. 

Unfortunately, I’ve only gotten about halfway through today’s news, so let’s just call this Morning Links lite.

And we’ll catch up with the rest tomorrow. 

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In today’s photo, Patrick Pascal sends proof that DTLA’s Olive Street bike lane is becoming a reality, looking south from 8th Street.

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This may be the most important video you see today.

Or maybe this year.

Tuesday evening, LA’s Velo Club La Grange hosted a two hour online discussion of racism, and what it’s like to be a Black bicyclist in the City of Angels.

This is how they describe it.

On Tuesday, July 7, 2020, Velo Club La Grange hosted a virtual Town Hall where a number of local Black cyclists shared their perspective and experiences and engaged in an interactive question and answer session. We invite you to watch this critically important conversation.

But that doesn’t begin to do it justice.

The panelists — a group of successful Black professionals — didn’t say anything I haven’t heard before from other people.

Yet hearing so many variations of the same hateful story, calmly told by so many people, was absolutely devastating.

Seriously, block out some time, and watch it. It may change the way you view race forever.

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When is a bike lane not a bike lane?

When its a parking lot.

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Help BikeSD raise funds for the Climate Ride this weekend.

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Submitted without comment.

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Barcelona soccer star Gerard Pique is one of us, arriving for an important La Liga match on his ebike.

Eddie Redmayne is one of us, too.

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Photographer Sterling Lorence discusses how to get the perfect mountain bike shots.

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

A New York driver plowed through a group of bike riders blocking an intersection for a Black Lives Matter protest, leaving a string of mangled bicycles in his wake; the driver was arrested two blocks away after being chased down by protesters.

A teenaged Pennsylvania driver faces charges for chasing down a bike rider and intentionally ramming hm with his car, for no apparent reason.

A British bicyclist was pushed into a canal by a group of thieves intent on stealing his bicycle, the latest in a string of similar attacks.

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Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

Popular San Francisco nonprofit bike shop Pedal Revolution calls it quits after years of financial loses compounded by Covid-19.

 

National

Nice piece from Popular Science explaining the differences between cheap bikes and more expensive models. Or to put it another way, between mass market Bicycle Shaped Objects, and bikes you’ll actually want to ride more than one summer.

A writer for The Next Web addresses the age old question of whether you should buy an e-bike or an e-scooter; concluding, both.

Specialized is finally making the jump to e-commerce, allowing its bikes and frames to be sold online.

Louisville KY’s bikeshare system puts its money where its bikes are, posting Black Lives Matter signs at the docking stations.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero, but in a different way, as a Minneapolis bicyclist creates an organization to collect up to 100 pounds of household supplies for people in need and deliver them to community service organizations, all by bicycle.

Incoming Michigan football player RJ Moten is one of us, putting his lockdown time to good use with 50 mile bike rides. Let’s hope he keeps it up, because the chances of actually playing football this fall aren’t looking good.

A Massachusetts town gets creative with its bike racks. Although most bike riders would gladly trade artistic racks for better security. 

An Orlando newspaper recommends three outstanding bike trails for your next trip to Florida.

 

International

The European Court of Justice rules that Brompton’s unique functional shape can be copyrighted.

Bike Biz considers the role bicycles can play during the age of Covid-19.

Streetsblog says US states should copy Scotland’s E-Bike Grant program to replace car and transit trips with bike rides.

A former British firefighter discovers what it’s like to open a new bike shop in the middle of a pandemic, which counterintuitively turned out to be the perfect time.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cyclist exults over the pending return of bike racing.

VeloNews explains how budding Canadian cycling star Michael Wood made the transition from running to bike racing.

 

Finally…

At last, a bike you ride sidesaddle. That feeling when your bike ride turns into a cheesy DIY porn shoot.

And yes, you’re actually supposed to sit on this.

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

Bike-friendly Councilmember Jose Huizar busted for bribery, Olive Street gets bike lanes, and Brits get £50 for bike repair

The other shoe finally dropped.

Two years after FBI agents raided the home and office of DTLA Councilmember Jose Huizar, he was charged yesterday with accepting bribes from a Chinese developer.

It had become clear in recent months that the Feds had Huizar in their sights, after a string of lower-level aides and go-betweens copped pleas that clearly implicated him.

Huizar, who was largely responsible for the bike-friendly Complete Streets makeover of Downtown Los Angeles in recent years, was charged under the RICO act for running a corrupt enterprise.

His arrest, along with the conviction of former San Fernando Valley Councilmember Mitch Englander, raises questions of whether anyone else was involved, and who else the Feds could be looking at.

Englander’s replacement, Councilmember John Lee, is believed to have been implicated in Englander’s bribery scheme, according to court documents, but hasn’t stepped down.

A number of other city officials and staffers, including South LA Councilmember Curren Price, have been subjects of search warrants.

Which means the question is whether Huizar’s alleged corruption marks the end of the investigation. Or just the tip of the iceberg.

And it serves as a reminder that those who support us don’t always deserve our support.

Although the sexual harassment case against Huizar, allegedly settled with funds from the bribery scheme, should have been a fucking clue.

The remaining city councilmembers voted unanimously to suspend Huizar from the council after his arrest; he was urged to resign before his term ends at the end of the year so Councilmember-elect Kevin de Leon can take over the seat.

Let’s hope de Leon turns out to be as much of a supporter of bicycles and Complete Streets as Huizar has been.

But less corrupt.

Allegedly.

Photo from josehuizar.com.

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Speaking of DTLA, it looks like Olive Street is about to get an upgrade.

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You might want to avoid Laguna Niguel’s Camino Capistrano for awhile.

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Great idea.

The UK is ready to roll with a voucher plan offering every resident the equivalent of $62 to get their bikes repaired,

The idea is to help get more people on bikes and support the bike industry, while giving a boost to the economy.

All of which we could use right here. And right now.

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

Retired motorcycle champ Miguel Duhamel is recovering after he was shot in the head with a BB gun from passing car while riding his bike in Red Rock, Nevada.

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

Police in Indianapolis are asking for the public’s help in identifying the bike-riding jerk who pushed another man off his bicycle, resulting in a severe concussion.

An off-duty NYPD cop was in a shootout with someone on a bicycle after a dispute with a group of men, who allegedly flashed gang signs; over a dozen shots were fired, but no one was hit.

A Tokyo bike rider was busted for allegedly damaging a driver’s car in a case of bike rage, even though that technically isn’t illegal until the end of this month.

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Local

Streetsblog says it will take more than a few sandwich boards to make LA’s 4th Street Slow Street friendlier for bicyclists and walkers.

The LAPD busted one of the bike and skateboard-riding Venice/Mar Vista gropers, and is looking for the other one, as well as any other women who may have been assaulted.

A pair of former competitive cyclists in Long Beach formed a messenger service to deliver just about anything by bike.

Gerard Butler is one of us, riding his bike to Venice for an evening ride along the beach.

 

State

Coronado plans to take over a pair of state highways from Caltrans, which could lead to more bike lanes in the city where residents find them dizzying and akin to having your daughters totally tatted. And led to James Corden’s all-time best monologue.  

Santa Barbara is politely asking bike riders to dismount on a new temporary plaza formed by closing a downtown street.

San Franciscans discover the unexpected delights of bicycling while they shelter at home.

Fremont shows other Bay Area cities how protected bikeways are done. Los Angeles could take a few notes, too.

 

National

He gets it. An infectious disease physician and bicyclist says he doesn’t wear a mask because he’s scared, he wears one out of respect for others.

Go ahead and order the fries. Bicycling says saturated fat isn’t bad for your heart after all.

Ouch. Vice examines how Uber turned a promising bikeshare company into literal garbage.

Gear Patrol suggests ten bike storage racks they promise will blend seamlessly into your home.

Portlanders are encouraged to get out and ride naked, by themselves, for a solo edition of the World Naked Bike Ride this weekend. Which could get you arrested just about anywhere else.

The Seattle Times talks with a former Caltrans and Los Angeles planner, currently working in Oakland, about how transportation planners can better serve people of color.

A Chicago woman is fighting for her life after she was right hooked by the driver of a city-owned dump truck. Crashes like that could be prevented by requiring sideguards on all large trucks, and cabs offering minimum 180° views.

A security guard in a bulletproof vest reportedly tackled a Black teenaged girl riding a Jump bike in Providence, Rhode Island, after Uber hired guards to recover their stolen bikes; naturally, the company denies it ever happened.

Sienna Miller is one of us, too, as she goes for a bike ride through New York.

Rayshard Brooks, the Black man who was recently shot by an Atlanta cop, was one of us, riding his bike to work when he lived in Ohio.

 

International

Road.cc picks the best front and rear daytime bike lights, and considers whether you should use them. Short answer, yes. Longer answer, hell yes. I’ve had far fewer close calls since I started riding with them at the urging of Mark Goodley.

Road.cc also suggests the best commuting upgrades for your bike. And for you.

Pez Cycling News picks the three best bike movies of all time, starting with everyone’s favorite. Okay, maybe just mine. And theirs.

Nothing strange here. A Northern Irish boy is missing after falling off his bike and striking his head, then taking off his all clothes and riding a little more, before abandoning his bike and walking away naked.

Tennis star Andy Murray is one of us, biking the famed Box hill climb while he shelters in Surrey, England.

Add the French Riviera to your bike bucket list. Assuming we can all travel again someday, and the Europeans let us back in.

A new Belgian study says bike riders in the country face no more risk than drivers do. On the other hand, Luxembourg is lagging badly.

Italy is enjoying a bike boom, too. Meanwhile, the European Public Health Alliance says the country can’t drive its way out of the coronavirus crisis with polluting vehicles.

A high ranking Manilla cop tell drivers to stay the hell out of the new bike lanes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Retired Belarusian pro Kanstantsin Siutsou got a four year ban for doping; the former Giro stage winner failed a test for EPO two years ago. Like that ban will really sting since he doesn’t compete anymore; it’s like firing someone two years after he quit. But hey, the doping era is over, right?

VeloNews spends a day with California-based women’s pro cyclist Tayler Wiles before the racing season theoretically gears back up.

 

Finally…

How to race halfway across the US without leaving Down Under. This is what a “suboptimal” bike lane looks like.

And your next roadie could set you back nearly $8,500.

But damn is it pretty.

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I continue to be surprised by the unexpected donations that have been coming in to support this site lately. Thanks to Carlos A and Bernard B for their generous donations to keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day.

And note to Bernard — You’re welcome!

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

High speed Silver Lake crash kills scooter rider, LAPD seeks sexual assault suspects, and parking in DTLA bike lanes

This is who we share the roads with.

A scooter rider was killed by a speeding driver in Silver Lake yesterday, just before the driver lost control of his SUV and slammed into a restaurant.

Fortunately, it hadn’t opened yet.

The driver was reportedly traveling at least 75 mph — over twice the legal speed limit — while swerving around cars and onto the wrong side of the roadway in the moments leading up to the crash, and just missing a woman riding her bike.

The scooter rider, who has not been publicly identified, wasn’t so lucky; two other people were hospitalized with serious injuries.

Fortunately, the newly reopened restaurant hadn’t begun its lunch service yet, or the situation could have been much worse.

This is exactly the problem many people have been warning against for weeks, myself included, as Los Angeles has failed to take any significant action to slow traffic on streets lightened by the coronavirus pandemic.

While traffic has seen a significant uptick in recent weeks, there still aren’t enough vehicles on the streets to slow people who can’t seem to keep their foot off the gas pedal.

Other cities around the world have taken advantage of the lighter traffic to reduce road capacity, carving out additional space to walk or ride bikes in an effort to slow traffic and provide safe alternatives to driving.

Yet LA has done nothing more significant than change the timing of some traffic lights.

Now an innocent person is dead because of it.

Thanks to John Damman for the heads-up.

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Speaking of who we share the roads with, an Eagle Rock driver can’t seem to grasp the concept of Slow Streets.

Or maybe just that they don’t belong to people in cars.

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The LAPD is on the lookout for a pair of serial gropers who have been sexually assaulting women walking or jogging alone in Venice and Mar Vista, sometimes making their escape by bicycle.

They may be responsible for similar attacks in Culver City and Marina del Rey.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Sexual Assault Section at LAPD’s Operation West Bureau, 213/473-0447.

Because no one should have to put up with this crap.

Period.

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Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.

Patrick Pascal forwards a series of photos showing that the more things change, the more they stay the same on DTLA’s 7th Street, where the newly protected and buffered bike lanes are still nothing more than parking lanes for Downtown’s entitled drivers.

Photos by Patrick Pascal.

 

He also notes that the cop shown here spends a lot of time on the street. But never seems to ticket anyone on four wheels.

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A new video prepared for the NACTO’s Bike Share and Cities for Cycling Roundtable talks with disabled people to show they ride bikes, too — and need to be taken into account when infrastructure plans are considered.

Frequent BikinginLA contributor Megan Lynch is one of the riders they talk with; you’ll find her around the three-minute mark.

She stresses that, in addition to her comments in the video, bike parking needs to accommodate less traditional bicycle designs used by handicapped riders, including recumbents, ebikes and adaptive bikes.

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Gravel Bike California offers a video guide to one of the best climbs in Los Angeles.

Thanks to CiclaValley’s Zachary Rynew for the link.

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There will be a bike ride celebrating tomorrow’s Juneteenth starting in DLTA Friday evening.

The unofficial holiday marks the date the last remaining slaves in Texas learned about the Emancipation Proclamation and their newfound freedom.

In light of this year’s protests over police killings and the fight for racial justice, the celebration should be bigger than ever.

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

A Florida man faces charges for pulling his truck up next to a bike rider, and shooting him in the head with a crossbow for no apparent reason; fortunately, the victim was not seriously injured.

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Local

The Santa Monica Daily Press talks with a pickup driver who had his wallet stolen and his truck damaged when he came to the aid of a bike-riding woman who was being attacked by looters, armed with just a hockey stick.

A Santa Monica letter writer really doesn’t like plans for expanded outdoor dining on Main Street, concerned that a passing bicyclist could sneeze on his guacamole.

E-cargo bikes could play a significant role, as Santa Monica looks to create the first zero-emission delivery zone in the US.

Santa Monica-based Bird is teaming with an Israeli company to provide turn-by-turn navigation to guide scooter riders through bike lane networks; the app will launch in Paris and Tel Aviv. Which makes sense, since we don’t even have a bike lane network in Los Angeles.

KABC-7 looks at how Long Beach ebike shop Propel Bikes is fairing during the coronavirus bike boom.

Stranger Things actor Joe Keery is one of us, going for a semi-casual ride through LA in a t-shirt and bibs.

 

State

Would someone please tell the Fountain Valley Fire Department that a bike helmet isn’t the best way to prevent head injuries and death? It’s a lot better to ride safely and defensively, and avoid crashes in the first place; helmets should always been seen as the last resort when all else fails. Not the first.

Ventura is closing down a five block stretch of Main Street in the downtown area for the next month to encourage people to get out to shop or dine while maintaining social distancing; meanwhile, the LA Times describes a similar street closure in Santa Barbara as “so popular it’s scary.”

Seriously, it takes a major schmuck to steal $20,000 worth of bikes from a San Jose bike co-op. Again.

 

National

Bicycling looks at the role of bicycles in the fight against racism.

Newsy examines the risk of catching Covid-19 while on a bike ride with friends, and concludes you don’t have much to worry about. Although it’s still best to limit it to a small group.

This is who we share the roads with, part two. A Portland man faces charges after driving into a group of protesters early Wednesday morning, injuring three people, then attempting to flee while driving recklessly at a high rate of speed.

A disabled Las Vegas vet turns to a ‘bent to help get his life back on track.

A coalition of Connecticut organizations, businesses and individuals have called the state’s electric car rebate program inequitable because it only applies to electric cars, arguing it should offer rebates on more affordable ebikes, as well.

A regional planning group is calling for a 425-mile bicycle network connecting all of New York’s five boroughs. Which might be the only thing that could prevent crippling gridlock due to a surge in post-coronavirus driving.

Police in New Jersey’s Long Beach remind residents and visitors that traffic safety is a shared responsibility. Which is true, unfortunately, since no one can seem to get the people in the big, deadly machines to behave.

A Florida woman got her stolen $8,000 racing bike back after a sheriff’s deputy spotted a homeless man with it. But then somehow had to search for the owner, even though she’d filed a police report.

 

International

Good advice from Road.cc on eight things on your bike you should check before every ride.

Bike Radar suggests Father’s Day gifts for your bike riding dad. Or just buy them for yourself, and pretend they’re from your kids.

The CBC looks at Calgary through the eyes of bicycle riders newly minted by the coronavirus bike boom.

A London TV presenter is encouraged by Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s proclamation of a golden age of cycling and decides to give it a try, but finds the experience terrifying.

London’s Independent says the pandemic has shown that a green urban utopia is within our grasp.

The Guardian examines one of the UK’s toughest bike rides, the 79-year old Cape Wrath Challenge, on eleven miles of single track through Scotland’s windswept moors to a craggy Victorian lighthouse.

 

Competitive Cycling

You can get Major Taylor’s autobiography The Fastest Bicycle Rider in the World for less than twenty bucks on Amazon. The legendary cyclist had to fight racism and prejudice throughout his short life and career, making it surprisingly appropriate for our time, too.

The Ventura County Star profiles 27-year old Kendal Ryan, who recently made the long list for the US women’s track cycling team for the 2020 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

A German website looks back at the Cannibal, as the legendary Eddy Merckx turns 75.

Peter Sagan announces he’ll skip the rescheduled classics to race back-to-back in the Tour de France and the Giro this summer on just two weeks rest.

 

Finally…

If you’re already on parole for theft, it’s probably not the best idea to make off with a kid’s bike because you’re tired of walking. How to ride across the US without leaving your car dealership.

And it turns out riding topless is perfectly legal in Minnesota.

Even for women.

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

LADOT drops DTLA bike lanes in favor of parking, Pomona thinks bike lanes are for kids, and LAFD on bikes

One quick note.

I renewed my annual membership in the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition last night.

With the LACBC facing financial difficulties stemming from the coronavirus crisis, as well as major financial mismanagement by the previous executive director, who shall forevermore go unnamed here, it’s more important than ever to join or renew your membership

Or just make a donation to keep the LACBC fighting for your right to ride safely on our streets. 

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I have a confession to make.

Ever since the company my wife works for — correction, worked for — shut down for the coronavirus lockdown, never to return, I haven’t been able to dig into the details on bike projects the way I’d like.

As much as I enjoy having her around, I miss those nine hours or so to myself everyday to gets things done.

Fortunately, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton is here to take up the slack.

Because one of those projects, which I mentioned here last week, would install bus lanes, along with left-side protected bike lanes, on one-way 5th and 6th Streets in DTLA.

But what I didn’t realize was that those bike lanes are only planned for just over half of the 1.3 mile project.

As Joe explains it,

Overall this is a good project. It’s a worthwhile improvement over what is out there today.

I did get a little frustrated about bike lanes on these streets. The city is adding left-side bike lanes (a one-way street best practice – like bike lanes on Spring and Main Streets) but only on about 0.7-mile of the overall 1.3-mile project – just over half the project. The issue is parking – there are two blocks of on-street parking that would need to be removed. While I personally would favor removing that parking, I understand it’s not easy politically.

I am still frustrated though that the city is basically throwing out 7 blocks of bike lanes because just 2 blocks are difficult. I wrote a letter to try to get the city to do the remaining 5 easy blocks of bike lane – which would connect Pershing Square with the downtown library.

That’s right.

LADOT, which is supposedly tasked with implementing the mobility plan, bike plan, Vision Zero, and the mayor’s Green New Deal plan to dramatically reduce driving in the city, is skipping a full seven blocks of bike lanes in favor of two lousy blocks of car parking.

In Downtown Los Angeles, no less, which UCLA parking meister Donald Shoup describes as having more parking per acre than any other city.

No, anywhere.

Which pretty much tells you where people on bicycles rate in the city’s transportation hierarchy these days.

Like several steps below cars. And maybe a step or two above road kill.

Fortunately, Joe’s not one to soft pedal something like this.

He suggests emailing city officials to politely request that they install additional bike lanes, at least on the five blocks where it doesn’t require the removal of parking spaces, and wouldn’t inconvenience anyone.

And he even provides a sample letter, while stressing that you should put it in your own words.

Email addresses:

  • councilmember.huizar@lacity.org
  • mayor.helpdesk@lacity.org
  • seleta.reynolds@lacity.org
  • and bcc Joe Linton at linton.joe@gmail.com)

Sample letter:

Honorable Councilmember Huizar, Mayor Garcetti, and General Manager Reynolds –

I write to you in support of adding bus and bike lanes to the greatest extent possible on 5th and 6th Streets downtown.

BSS is repaving these streets starting June 15th. LADOT announced that bus lanes will be added from Figueroa to Central, and left-side bike lanes will be added from Spring to Central.

Thank you all for your role in bringing much needed bus lanes, which will improve transit, air quality, equity, and quality of life for Angelenos.

Thank you all for the needed bike lanes, which will improve safety and health. I urge you though to extend the bike lanes further than the current announced length. It appears that LADOT is skipping seven blocks (Figueroa to Spring) of bike lanes to preserve two blocks (Hill to Spring) of parking.

At a minimum, the city should install a left-side bike lane for the missing five blocks – from Hill to Figueroa – where there is sufficient space and no parking removal necessary. Adding this bike lane would keep cyclists safer, as well as keeping us out of the bus lane, making the bus lane more effective.

Sincerely,

[name]
[street address]

I’ll send my email later today. And I hope you will, too.

Because there’s no reason our safety should take a backseat to a parked car.

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Apparently, bike lanes are for kids in Pomona. Or at least, they now come under the Youth Services budget.

Thanks to Eric Griswold for the heads-up.

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Who needs a firetruck or paramedic unit when you’ve got bicycles?

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Bike Angeles takes a hi-def bike tour of the UCLA campus.

Thanks to Zachary Rynew for the link.

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This is exactly what Los Angeles isn’t doing right now.

But should be.

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Austrian mountain bikers Fabio Wibmer & Vali Höll are finally back to shredding after the country ended its lockdown and reopened the trails.

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Local

LA-based former pro Phil Gaimon shares his eating habits with Bicycling. And no, it isn’t just cookies.

A Santa Clarita bike rider was sent to the hospital after getting hit by a driver at Newhall Ranch Road and Santa Clarita Parkway on Monday; no word on the victim’s condition. Although it would be nice if story mentioned that the car even had a driver.

Creed star and Black Panther antagonist Michael B. Jordan is one of us, going for an “invigorating” LA mountain bike ride on Sunday, one week after his impassioned speech at a Black Lives Matter protest.

 

State

Advocacy group Bike Bakersfield is back in business 16 hours a week after shutting down for the coronavirus lockdown.

Calbike considers the planned Central Valley Bikeways Project, intended to connect several Central Valley cities with California’s high speed rail. Assuming the rail project actually gets built, that is.

The Sonoma bicyclist killed in a hit-and-run a couple weeks ago has been identified as a 35-year old Romanian entrepreneur, who was killed when a passing pickup driver struck him in the head with the truck’s wing mirror; the damaged truck was found a few miles away, but the driver still hasn’t been arrested.

 

National

The Associated Press catches up with the worldwide bike boom, saying Target and Walmart have been cleaned out of bicycles.

Thanks to kindhearted community members, a seven-year old Missouri girl with limited mobility in her legs can ride along with her dad in a custom-built sidecar attached to his bike.

This is why you don’t try to recover a stolen bike yourself. A Wisconsin man is lucky to be alive, and may still lose his arm, after he was shot while trying to reclaim his stepson’s stolen bicycle; a 17-year old teenager has been charged with the crime.

A new bike and pedestrian path has opened along a Tarrytown NY bridge, providing an iconic view made famous by the 18th Century Hudson River School of artists, as well as a grate view of the river 102 feet below. And no, that’s not a typo.

Fortune says bikes will have a new place in city life in New York, and around the world, as life rebounds from the coronavirus crisis.

 

International

Cycling News looks at the pros and cons of buying a gravel bike.

The Share the Road Cycling Coalition and The Centre for Active Transportation have posted a recording of their webinar Making Space: Biking out of the pandemic online. Thanks to Robert Leone for the tip.

A Toronto man is biking 46 kilometers — the equivalent of 28.5 miles — or running 4.6 kilometers every day for 46 days to honor George Floyd, who was 46-years old when he was killed by a Minneapolis cop. Or ex-cop, now.

A British Parliamentary advisory group has concluded that e-scooters are inherently unsafe, while a European group says the risk is no greater than riding a bicycle.

According to an English author, one bright spot in the Covid-19 pandemic is the rise of bicycles, and the role they play in art and society.

A former bike shop owner, soon to be prime minister, negotiated a huge increase in active transportation spending, committing 10% of the country’s transportation budget on bicycling and another 10% on walking; two-thirds of the remaining 80% will go to public transit.

Bikes continue to boom in Kolkata as an alternative to mass transit in the age of Covid-19.

Chinese tech giant Tencent is building a carfree city of the future on reclaimed land in Shenzhen, centered on a green corridor for buses, bikes and autonomous vehicles

Taiwanese bikemakers and parts suppliers — including Giant, the world’s largest bikemaker — are pedaling faster than ever to catch up with the booming worldwide demand.

Seoul, Korea is planning to build another 14 miles of bikeways within the next year as the city plans a bike path network to “cut congestion, fight pollution and reduce energy use.”

People caught violating Japan’s strict new bike laws just twice in three years will have to take a traffic safety course, or pay the equivalent of a $460 fine.

Jakarta, Indonesia is bringing back their weekly Car Free Day, but limiting it to bike riding and walking, with no food services or other vendors.

Horrifying Twitter thread from Australia, where an aboriginal man was allegedly beaten by police for the crime of riding without a helmet and bike lights.

 

Competitive Cycling

After beating cancer twice and surviving getting hit by a truck while riding across the US, 40-year old endurance cyclist James Golding insists he’s going to win the Race Across America, even if he has to wait another year, after this year’s RAAM was canceled.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to jack a truck, don’t leave your bike in the back once you dump it. Your next e-mountain bike could take a selfie.

And doesn’t everyone take their pet chicken riding with them?

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Thanks to Scott R for his generous donation to help keep this site coming your way every day. Donations are always welcomed, especially now.

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

Somber solo Ride of Silence, bicyclist defends San Diego’s lockdown-busting ride, and protected lane parking in DTLA

You’re on your own for tonight’s annual Ride of Silence, which can be done solo or virtually.

Or maybe just join me tonight in remembering all those who have lost their lives needlessly.

Photo by Matt Tinoco.

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Seriously?

A Los Angeles bicyclist defends the actions of the bike riders on Sunday’s mass ride through San Diego, which resulted in a literal fist fight with an angry driver.

As in,

“When you have that many riders, it’s going to be unruly. I wouldn’t say rowdy,” said Vasquez.

Never mind that unruly ride violated every semblance of California’s Covid-19 lockdown rules.

Which currently prohibits groups of more than ten. Let alone the few hundred bike riders it drew from all over the state.

And never mind that they couldn’t do a better job of spreading the disease if they tried.

If only one of the riders had a symptom-free case of coronavirus without knowing it, they could have shared it with dozens of others on the ride, who would then take it home to their family and friends.

Not to mention putting innocent bystanders at risk along every inch of the ride route.

Irresponsible doesn’t begin to cover it.

According to the LA bicyclist — who I won’t name, even though the story does — the mass ride was sponsored by a group called Keep it Rolling.

Maybe they’ll think before they roll out again.

So maybe they next time we read or hear about them, it will be because they got it right.

Not for crap like this.

………

No surprise here.

The new protected bike lanes on 7th Street in DTLA have turned into one more example of free curbside parking for any drivers willing to squeeze through the bollards.

Just like what happened after every other protected bike lane in Downtown Los Angeles was opened.

Which makes you wonder why LADOT apparently hasn’t learned anything from the experience.

Thanks to Melanie Freeland for the heads-up.

………

Pasadena police are warning about an increase in bike thefts, with advice on how to prevent it.

All good advice.

Although I’d add that bikes aren’t safe on balconies even if they’re secured, unless it’s too high to climb up. And it probably isn’t.

Your garage isn’t much better, unless it’s securely locked at all hours.

Also, take lots of pictures of your bike — including your bike’s serial number, which is the easiest way to make sure you always have it with you.

And register your bike for free with Bike Index right now while you’re thinking about it. Before anything happens to it.

Thanks to Tim Rutt for the link.

………

Who was that masked man?

If you’ve spotted a 7-foot tall man riding a bike through Los Angeles lately with only his eyes visible, it may have been the Lakers’ JaVale McGee.

Although maybe someone should teach him how to fix a flat.

………

Here’s your chance to sort-of ride with the world’s best — and only — all type 1 diabetic cycling team.

But only if you’re diabetic, too.

Speaking of which, CNN says the team has turned type 1 diabetes into its greatest strength.

………

If you live or work in my neighborhood, the Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council is having a virtual meeting this evening.

If you have the patience to wait until they finally get around to general comments, ask for some Slow Streets in Hollywood.

………

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

An Omaha woman was knocked off her bike by rock-throwing teenagers, just days after resuming riding for the first time since she was eight years old. Jerks.

………

Local

Westside Councilmember Mike Bonin talks LA’s Slow Streets program on KPCC’s Take Two.

CD15 Councilmember Joe Buscaino gets it. He’s calling for allowing Los Angeles businesses to expand out into sidewalks, streets and parking lots for dining al fresco and other outdoor activities. Seriously, anything that gets Angelenos to re-envision our streets is a good thing.

You should be able to find plenty of bike parking in South Pasadena now, after the city worked with Active SGV to install 200 new lime green bike racks, including covered bike corrals.

Just weeks after buying Uber’s Jump Bikes, Lime is pulling the company’s ebikes and scooters off the not-so-mean streets of Santa Monica.

Long Beach is planning to turn currently under-used streets into outdoor dining, too.

 

State

San Francisco’s Sierra Club says we should try making Slow Streets permanent.

Sacramento is finding space on the roads for Slow Streets, too.

A bike-riding Davis columnist tells drivers to use their damn turn signals, already.

 

National

Curbed calls Slow Streets the path to a better city.

Yahoo lays out your fashion choices for every type of ride this year. Or you could just wear whatever the hell you want.

Gear Patrol says you’re wearing your bike helmet wrong, especially if it’s on backwards.

Portland business owners get it, where 60 businesses say they support a proposed protected bike lane in front of their shop.

Colorado teens are trying to defend a DIY bike park after the city moves to remove it.

If anyone wants to know what to get me for my birthday, bikemaker Detroit Bikes is remaking the 1965 edition of the iconic Schwinn Collegiate model, which will be available at Walmart for just under a grand. Or just get me a corgi.

A new public health study shows collisions involving bike riders dropped 13% in Philadelphia after the city’s bikeshare opened, despite the increase in ridership and no new infrastructure, giving more proof to the safety in numbers theory. And more people bike commute in cities with bikeshare, too.

Good news: New Jersey is allowing bike shops to reopen. Bad news: They’re reopening car dealers, too.

A Savanah, Georgia paper says the heir to the roadside Stuckey’s chain is one of us, too.

 

International

Treehugger says ebikes are eating the market, as Rad Power Bikes sees an almost 300% increase in sales during the coronavirus shutdown.

Strava defends their decision to start charging for leaderboard access and break thousands of third-party apps, saying the company isn’t profitable. And needs to start raising revenues now.

Peru is now a bicycling paradise, courtesy of the Covid-19 lockdown. Meanwhile, Americas Quarterly asks if the pandemic could mark the beginning of a biking revolution in Latin America.

Canadian Cycling Magazine takes a look at Supremely overpriced designer bicycles.

Analog bikes are booming, too. A UK bike shop has seen a nearly 700% jump in sales of bike over the equivalent of $600 compared to last year.

Eight ways to avoid the crowds on your next bike ride through London.

German bike shops are busier than ever.

Tel Aviv is taking a step beyond Slow Streets, converting eleven streets in the city center into pedestrian zones.

Bikes are booming in Uganda, too, where driving is prohibited under the country’s coronavirus lockdown.

Nothing like adding a slightly illegal 5,000 watt, 49 mph ebike conversion kit from a Hong Kong company to your existing bicycle.

 

Competitive Cycling

Chris Froome is threatening to jump ship midseason, leaving Ineos for a rival team after being overshadowed in recent years by fellow Tour de France winners Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal. Although it’s hard to call it midseason if there haven’t been any races.

Running a few days behind, as usual, Bicycling catches up with pro mountain biker Keegan Swenson’s new Everesting record, as he tops Phil Gaimon’s new world record by 12 minutes, just four days after Gaimon set it.

Seriously, who’s shocked that Lance started doping long before he turned proBetter question: Who still cares?

 

Finally…

Yes, Peloton, it is possible to be too white. If you’re going to use pool noodles to protest cars coming too close, maybe try keeping away from them, too.

And not bad for my first self-applied Covid haircut, if I say so myself.

………

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

New Broadway protected bike lane could be final Santa Monica bike project; DTLA 7th ST protected bike lane moves forward

A special thanks to Los Angeles Bicycle Attorneys Josh and Paul Cohen of Cohen Law Partners for renewing their sponsorship for the coming year. 

They join title sponsors Pocrass & De Los Reyes in renewing their support, despite these troubling economic times. 

It’s their sponsorship that allows me to do what I do, and bring you the latest and best bike news on a daily basis. 

Without their support — and yes, yours — this site would not be possible, at least in its present form. 

Now saddle up, because we’ve got a lot of ground to cover.

……..

Let’s start in Santa Monica, where good things are happening.

And not so good.

On the plus side, David Drexler sends word that the city has taken advantage of the slow traffic during the coronavirus shutdown to install parking protected bike lanes on a short section of Broadway.

Look at this, a gift to cyclists from Santa Monica. They took advantage of the low corona traffic to redo Broadway thus far from 20th Street west a few blocks. They moved the parking away from the curb and replaced it with a very protected bike lane on both sides. These photos were a taken at 19th and Broadway. Not sure how far they will extend it. It goes from 20th to the Santa Monica food coop right now, then the old green lane picks up there.

The picture of the G on the ground is probably where they will pain green.

It makes cycling much safer in those lanes than the ones next to traffic, I feel. Hope they do more.

On the other side of the ledger, Santa Monica is planning to make drastic cuts to city funding in response to the loss of sales tax revenue due to the lockdown.

Advocacy group Santa Monica Spoke joins with other organizations to warn that excessive cuts to the transportation department could imperil the safety of vulnerable road users, as well as any post-pandemic economic recovery.

Santa Monica’s economy depends on a functioning transportation network that safely moves people, goods and services. Current proposed budget cuts will be destructive to transportation work, will disable basic functions, and slow our safe recovery from this pandemic. Transportation staff, infrastructure and services are classified as essential government functions* and perform vital functions that literally keep our community running safely. These cuts will damage safety and the very fabric of services and programs that we depend on living in Santa Monica…

These essential life saving functions are under threat with extreme plans to cut over half of the City Transportation and Mobility Division compared to 20-40% across other departments. While we can only imagine the stress and burden of decisions weighing on City Council, this level of cuts would severely impact basic public safety and infrastructure operation functions, wounding our city’s ability to rebound fiscally from the COVID-19 crisis. It is imperative to be strategic. We must consider the holistic dynamic relationships, dependencies and functions that contribute to safety, economic stability and regrowth. While the City suffers catastrophic shortfalls, we should not use a sledgehammer where a scalpel is needed to balance new budgets. Council needs to take time to cut costs strategically, while maintaining essential staff that would facilitate a safe and secure path to economic recovery and resilience.

As part of the cutbacks, Santa Monica plans to cut all bike, pedestrian and Vision Zero funding for the next year.

Which means those Broadway protected bike lanes may be the last we’ll see for awhile.

The Santa Monica City Council will hold a virtual council meeting tomorrow to discuss the proposed budget cuts.

Santa Monica Spoke urges you to contact the councilmembers to demand continued funding of the Transportation Department, and ongoing support for bicycle, pedestrian and Vision Zero projects.

Because lives depend on it.

And the proposed cuts are more than just a scratch.

………

Evidently, Vision Zero isn’t completely dead in the City of Angels.

Just badly wounded.

The program is rising from a premature grave, as LADOT invites you to attend a free public workshop to discuss plans to fix 7th Street in DTLA.

And about damn time, since the existing bike lane is largely unrideable much of the time, and usually serves as nothing more than free parking in front of the Bloc shopping mall.

And the only rule governing traffic on 7th seems to be to aim for the soft, squishy people instead of the cold, hard cars.

You can learn more about the project here.

Thanks to Kent Strumpell for the heads-up.

………

Meanwhile, Streets For All offers a glimpse of what could be if LA actually remembers it has an already-approved Mobility Plan.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1256351201462870017

You can see a larger, interactive version of the above map here.

And here’s the link to the petition, since the link in the tweet is broken.

………

Bike Angeles examines some unexpected improvements along a two-mile stretch of Vineland Ave in North Hollywood.

………

This is why we can’t have nice things.

………

When a bike rider hits a pedestrian, it usually end badly for both parties.

Which is exactly what happened in Berkeley on Saturday, where a 55-year old man on a bike crashed into a 60-year old woman, leaving both victims in critical condition.

Although it’s not clear how it happened, since police say he was riding in the street and she was standing on the sidewalk; a witness says the man on the bike must have had “mental issues.”

The same thing happened in Minneapolis, where a pedestrian is in critical condition and a bicyclist seriously injured following a crash.

Anyone who’s ridden for awhile can tell you it’s not always the bike rider’s fault in a situation like that; people are unpredictable, and can step out into the street without looking for someone on a bicycle.

But it’s always our obligation to ride carefully around pedestrians, because they’re the only ones more vulnerable than we are. And be prepared to stop or swerve to avoid crashing into someone.

Especially if you’re riding on a sidewalk.

………

This working from home thing might just catch on after all.

https://twitter.com/cycling_woman/status/1255909638907846659

Thanks to W Corylus for the link.

………

Maybe it’s not the best idea to draft a dump truck in heavy traffic.

………

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

Nashville police are looking for a goateed, bike-riding miscreant who smashed a jewelry store window with a cinderblock and made off with over 200 rings. Although as someone who spent a decade in the jewelry business, I’d question why the window wasn’t shatterproof glass, and the rings in a safe after hours.

A Scottish thief made off on his bike after taking over 100 wedding rings worth more that $124,000 in a grab and run.

………

Local

Streetsblog examines the massive failure of LA city officials in cancelling a Slow Streets social distancing program in the Del Rey neighborhood, just hours after it was announced.

The LA Times says city officials think closing streets for social distancing just too risky, even though other cities throughout North America are doing exactly that. Evidently, they think we’re calling for CicLAvia-style street closures that would draw people from across the city, rather than closing a few streets in every neighborhood to allow people to get outside without risking their health and safety.

Dylan McDermott is one of us, as the Hollywood star went for a bike ride through Pacific Palisades with his family.

Santa Monica residents join the chorus of voices demanding safe space on the streets for social distancing.

 

State

A Chula Vista bike rider suffered a leg injury when he or she was was right hooked while riding in a crosswalk by a truck driver, who never bothered to look the direction he was turning.

Britney Spears is one of us, posting a photo showing her riding her bike with her boyfriend near her Thousand Oaks home in happier, pre-pandemic days.

A Santa Barbara bike rider is in critical condition after he was run down by what must have been a self-driving car, since the story does’t even mention a driver.

Bay Area bike shops can’t keep up with the demand as business booms during the coronavirus pandemic.

It takes a major schmuck to steal bikes and tools from a nonprofit San Jose bike co-op as they were preparing to reopen next week.

This is why you shouldn’t try to reclaim a stolen bike by yourself. A Santa Rosa man is recovering from stab wounds to his hand after he approached a man who was riding his stolen bike.

Sacramento will block or limit motor vehicle traffic on some streets to make more room for social distancing. On the other hand, San Jose says don’t hold your breath.

 

National

Yes, May is Bike Month, even if everything has been cancelled and too many cities won’t give an inch on the streets during the coronavirus pandemic. Including Los Angeles.

Zwift wants you to ride or walk in place to raise funds for Doctors Without Borders.

Bike Snob says road cycling isn’t dead after all, even if gravel is all the rage.

An eight-year old Honolulu boy got his stolen bike back after conservation officers spotted it outside a state park.

You don’t mess with an angry dog — or a grandfather. Reality TV star Dog the Bounty Hunter is offering a $1,000 reward for the “scum” who stole his granddaughter’s bike from the family garage in Hawaii.

A New York nurse continues to bike to work, even after she was hit by a driver.

We already know NFL quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is one of us. But apparently supporters of his new team are just figuring it out, as fans are shocked by his “absurd” 74-mile Florida ride.

 

International

People around the world are being encouraged to see bikes as a post coronavirus commuting option — when they’re not getting stopped by the cops for doing exactly that.

Bike historian Carlton Reid offers a warning from history despite the boom in bicycling during the Covid-19 lockdown. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

Bike Radar explains what muscles are used to ride a bike, and offers advice on what to wear when you ride one. Never mind that you can ride in anything from T-shirt and shorts to a three-piece suit. But the right clothes can make it a hell of a lot more comfortable.

Road.cc says you’re not a pro, so you don’t have to ride like one.

A nine-year old Ontario boy has set out on a 621-mile bike ride to raise funds for a local health foundation, riding roughly six miles a day.

When a Nova Scotia nursing home worker went to pick up her bike after having it repaired, the shop surprised her with a new bicycle to thank her for her work on the frontlines of the Covid-19 battle.

Speaking of rising from a near grave, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson returns from his extended absence due to Covid-19, and calls on the country’s mayors to take action to encourage bicycling and walking, and keep cars out of city centers.

Noel Gallagher is one of us, as the former Oasis singer and guitarist rode his bike near his English home, despite the country’s lockdown.

British band Glass Animals talks about the 2018 bicycling crash that nearly took the life of the band’s drummer and left him unable to walk, talk, eat, read or write for a time.

Members of a Scottish cycling club honored one of their own, lining the street with their bikes and club kits to show respect for a member who died of Covid-19.

A Catholic priest in the UK had to deliver his daily podcast and evening prayers as he walked home, after going out for a bike ride and suffering successive flats.

Just call it Strassenverkehrsordnungnovelle. Germany announced a raft of changes to traffic laws, including banning parking in bike lanes, allowing people to ride two abreast, and prohibiting drivers from passing bike riders or motorcycles in narrow areas.

Over 3,500 Slovenians rode their bikes in defiance of the lockdown to protest a ban on bike riding, as well as government interference in procuring protective gear and ventilators.

Tragic news from India, where a couple were killed in a collision along with two other people, after a kindhearted truck driver offered them a lift after riding 250 miles because they couldn’t find any other form of transportation.

An Indian op-ed calls for more space on the roads for people walking or biking, arguing that the biggest hurdle in making making it more popular in the country is a lack of necessary infrastructure.

Tokyo commuters are taking to their bikes to avoid the risk of infection on the city’s packed trains.

 

Competitive Cycling

A UK paper looks back at what they call the toughest bike race ever ridden, a snowy seven-stage, 1,300-mile race through the battlefields of the just-ended Great War, as well as in the middle of the Spanish Flu pandemic.

Apparently assuming Covid-19 will blow over by then, officials tell pro cyclists to be ready for an August 29th start for the Tour de France.

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome says the race can work without spectators, but isn’t sure organizers can keep them away.

June’s mountain bike worlds was just the latest race to fall victim to the coronavirus, while September’s European road championships were put off until next year.

A British man raised the equivalent of $16,000 by riding the length of the Tour de France without ever leaving his apartment.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be a seatless Penny Farthing. Or long enough to let you maintain social distance from your tandem partner.

And when you’re drunk, riding salmon, and carrying an open container, at least put some damn lights on your bike.

And don’t fight with the cops that try to stop you.

………

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

Huizar calls for carfree Broadway in DTLA, Arroyo Seco Bike Path finally open, and studies support bus and bike lanes

Breaking news: KNBC-4 reported that a bike rider was critically injured last night in a collision at Hollywood Blvd and McCadden Place. However, video from the scene appears to show the victim may have been seated on a Wheels scooter rather than a bicycle.

Unfortunately, nothing has been posted online yet.

………

Outgoing CD14 Councilmember Jose Huizar responds to the question of whether other California cities will close streets to cars — or rather, open them up to people — in the wake of San Francisco’s closure of Market Street.

Huizar called yesterday for the possibility of a complete closure of historic Broadway in DTLA to motor vehicles between 1st and 12th Streets, with the exception of buses.

This comes after years of efforts to revitalize the corridor, including a road diet that cut the number of traffic lanes in half, and reopening or repurposing many of the street’s grand theaters.

Note to KCBS-2: Despite the headline in the above link, the proposed ban is on cars and trucks, not feet. 

………

The Arroyo Seco Bike Path is officially open, after being closed for a year to repair damage caused by last year’s rains.

………

No surprise here.

A new Portland study shows bike riders are safer sharing a bus only lane with transit vehicles than sharing regular traffic lanes with everyone else.

And if you build it, they will come. A new British government reports shows that investing in bicycling pays, as building bike lanes encourages people to bike more and drive less.

………

Former New York DOT Commissioner Janet Sadik-Khan teams with another writer to examine the real global health crisis —

Deaths caused by motor vehicles and the people who drive them.

………

Some things are universal. And definitely worth 35 seconds out of your day.

………

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

It’s a well-deserved three and a half years behind bars for a road raging New Mexico driver who put his car in reverse, floored it and slammed into a group of senior Santa Fe bicyclists; he’ll have to serve at lest 85% of his sentence — and attend anger management sessions. Thanks to Brian Kreimendahl of Bike Santa Fe for the link.

A Kenyan driver takes a punishment pass to the extreme, sideswiping a pair of bike riders and speeding away without stopping.

………

Local

The Daily News provides a look at the race for LA city councilmember in CD4 as three candidates vie to unseat David Ryu.

More on Santa Monica’s plan to give Wilshire Blvd a safety makeover to protect bicyclists and pedestrians, including a ban on left turns onto the boulevard from cross streets.

The Savage Hearts Love Ride 2020 will roll from Marina del Rey tomorrow to provide care packages and love to those in need.

 

State

The community turned out to show their support for fallen bicyclist Kevin Wilson as the hit-and-run driver who killed the beloved postal worker near El Cajon was sentenced; the victim’s wife said his killer got less than four years behind bars, but she got a “life sentence without the love of my life.”

Indio is investing $1.25 million to build four miles of new art and music-enhanced bike lanes.

After a video circulated of a Turlock special needs boy getting assaulted and robbed by three other kids, a Good Samaritan stepped in to replace his shoes and bicycle.

San Jose puts its money where its mouth is, providing $7 million upfront to fund their new Vision Zero plan, as well as forming a task force to curb traffic deaths.

After three Marin County men were charged with building an illegal offroad trail, a Marin paper calls on everyone to work together to create legal multiuse ones.

Healdsburg is installing wayfinding signs to help bike riders navigate the Sonoma County city.

Ten years after a Nevada City bike rider was killed by a distracted driver, the memorial ride and run held in his honor is still going strong, with up to 300 riders participating.

 

National

A must-read from Curbed, which argues that public meetings are broken and offers advice for how to fix them. Anyone who’s been shouted down by traffic safety deniers and NIMBYs in recent years knows just how broken the current system is.

A supercar designer introduces a new autonomous electric car so cute, that will probably be your last thought as it runs you over. Thanks to Mike Cane for the heads-up.

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says recent Los Angeles transplant LeBron James is the new hero of bikeshare and bike lanes, saying children need access to bikes and safe places to ride them. Rumor has it he also plays basketball here in LA. LeBron, that is, not Weiss.

They get it. Boulder CO bike commuters say every day is Winter Bike to Work Day; the official international Winter Bike to Work Day is this Friday. Except in Los Angeles, where the weather would be perfect for it. 

A new Pueblo CO bike bank is fixing up bicycles and giving them to homeless people.

A Colorado CEO plans to ride a bike barefoot across the US, from Disneyland in Anaheim to Disney World in Orlando, to call attention to human trafficking; it’s the first known attempt by anyone to pedal barefoot across the country.

A Texas writer explores Fort Worth by bikeshare, and discovers it’s a lot easier and more fun than he could imagine.

An Iowa bill that would require bike riders to wear high-viz and have both front and rear lights is moving forward in the state legislature, even though no groups support it.

New York learns the hard way what happens when a protected bike lane isn’t protected enough.

New York preschoolers are learning to recycle cans to buy a new bicycle for their school gym.

A DC adjacent Maryland county is considering a proposal to make bike registration voluntary, instead of the current mandatory, but usually ignored, requirement.

A DC site says the city can learn from Oslo and Helsinki when it comes to Vision Zero, both of which didn’t have a single bike or pedestrian death last year. Then again, so can every other city.

A Virginia transit system has spent five years and $3.8 million to build two secure bike corrals, and they’re still not done. Give me a million dollars and a few tools, and I’ll build the damn things myself. Seriously. 

Florida may be the nation’s deadliest state for people on bicycles, but one Central Florida county hasn’t had a bicycling death in two years.

 

International

Four intrepid travelers recount lessons learned from riding fat bikes around St. James Bay in Antarctica. Here’s one more tip: Go in the summer next time.

This is who we share the roads with. A Calgary prosecutor says a driver high on meth chuckled when he learned he’d killed a 15-year old boy riding a bike and injured his companion.

Forget a bike bridge. Local officials are considering opening a bike ferry across the Saint Lawrence River to connect an upstate New York city with another in Ontario, Canada.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says forget that 350 million pounds he promised for active transportation projects in England; he really meant £1 billion for biking and walking.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero, as a man in the UK discovers three barely living lobsters on the side of the road that had apparently fallen off a truck, and carries them back to the sea on his bike to set them free.

An Irish writer says she still gets flashbacks from getting hit by a driver while riding her bike. And that just going for a bike ride shouldn’t feel like going to war.

The Netherlands has fined over 21,000 bike riders for using a handheld phone while riding in the first six months the ban has been in effect. That compares to 98,000 California drivers in all of 2017, with over twice the population.

A new Ai Wei Wei sculpture in Abu Dhabi continues his celebration of pedal power, made from 720 carefully stacked bicycles.

Your next bike could be handmade from bamboo in Kathmandu with seating for three. Or a lot more, judging by the last photo.

Pink Bike looks at the potential impact of the novel coronavirus, aka Covid-19, on the bicycle industry, at a time when most bikes and parts come from the Middle Kingdom.

 

Competitive Cycling

Actor and bicyclist Patrick Dempsey will serve as the honorary captain of the US Olympic Cycling Team at the Tokyo Summer Olympics.

The nation’s largest fat bike beach bike race will be held in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina next month.

Who needs a mountain for downhill mountain bike racing when you’ve got a perfectly good city?

 

Finally…

Your next bike could have skis instead of wheels, but it only goes downhill. Your next saddle could have a rat on it; no, not you.

And sometimes you just have to bust out of preschool and ride your bike.

 

Morning Links: Missing bollards in DTLA, LA Walks celebrates, and new LA River bridge unofficially opens

It’s a light news day as we lead into the actual holiday season. As opposed to the one that started shortly before Halloween.

So let’s all remember to ride safely and defensively the next few days.

And try to keep it that way.

………

Eric Solomon sends word that Los Angeles officials appear to be doing their best to make the protected bike lanes on Spring Street in DTLA a little less safe.

I noticed that some of the bollards on the Spring Street Bike lane have been removed from the edge of intersections, allowing cars turning left to cut through the bike lane rather than make their turn from the middle of the intersection.

After all, you wouldn’t want to inconvenience motorists a little just to improve safety for people who aren’t encased in a few tons of glass and steel.

Right?

Update: Solomon reports today that the bollards have been replaced.

………

Los Angeles Walks will honor leading walking advocates at their annual soirée next month, with tickets starting at $150.

………

It looks like the striking new bike and pedestrian suspension bridge over the Los Angeles River is finally open.

………

That feeling when you need the entire road for your oversized vehicle.

………

‘Tis the Season.

Oklahoma City volunteers built 1,400 bicycles for children in need.

Nashville’s Toys for Tots program ensured over one thousand kids will get a new bike for the holidays.

The generous owners of an English bike shop gave a new bike to a 13-year old autistic boy, after the one he used to strengthen his hips and legs following surgery was stolen while his family was away.

………

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

An Ontario, Canada driver discovers he can skip traffic by using a curb-protected bike lane that’s a perfect fit for his SUV.

Sometimes it’s the people on bikes behaving badly.

Cal State San Marcos police are looking for a man who exposed himself and jerked off in front of a pair of women, before riding off on a bicycle.

Talk about instant karma in action. Police in Corpus Christi TX are looking for a man who rode his bike up to a woman and snatched her purse, then crashed into a truck as he made his getaway; he ran off, leaving his bike and gun behind.

Seriously, how big an asshole do you have to be to give another bike rider a punishment pass?

………

Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

Still more sad news from Northern California, where a homeless man was killed when he was struck by several drivers while riding on a freeway in Richmond; at least one of the drivers fled the scene. As with other similar cases recently, there’s no explanation for why he was riding there.

A Sonoma columnist says the $20 million it took to build a new protected pedestrian and bicycle lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge was money well spent to fight climate change.

Hundreds of Chico bike riders raided thrift stores or their grandparent’s closets to turn out for this year’s Tweed Ride. Even if the local paper had to explain what tweed is.

 

National

A Buddhist “Monk on a Bike” is riding westward across the US after riding across the country in the opposite direction last year, in an effort to connect with the spirit of America and call attention to Alzheimer’s disease, which recently took his father’s life.

Good news for randonneurs, as a new 10-year study shows extreme exercise — working out 35 hours a week — doesn’t create any additional heart risks.

The Seattle Times calls on Washington lawmakers to require bike helmets for everyone, saying the benefits are unquestioned. Even though numerous studies have questioned the benefits of mandating helmets. And no, bike helmets aren’t the equivalent of seat belts. 

The man who killed a Mesa AZ bike rider in 2006 was finally arrested, 13 years  after fleeing to Mexico.

A Tucson man has built his own interactive website to help bike riders find safe and quiet routes to ride.

A Denver bike advocate rebuts a pair of op-eds from a Koch-funded pro-driving group that say the best way to fight traffic congestion and pollution is to just keep putting more cars on the roads.

The local Buffalo NY newspaper says a battalion of lobbyists are pushing for the governor to sign a bill that would allow dockless ebikes and e-scooters in the state. Then again, so are countless average New Yorkers, who simply want to use them.

New York is getting a bike mayor — and a pedestrian mayor. Which is two more than we have in ostensibly progressive Los Angeles.

I still want to be like him when I grow up. As promised, a Florida pastor celebrated his 82nd birthday by riding his age; he’s put 30,000 miles on his bike since he bought it 14 years ago.

 

International

Evidence continues to grow refuting the belief that ebikes are cheating, as studies show they give you the same physiological benefits as regular bikes.

A tech entrepreneur says the future of the bicycle industry is using bikes, rather than owning them.

Toronto pedestrian advocates are up in arms after police gave seniors reflective armbands to keep them safe at night, instead of doing something to improve safety on the streets.

The ebike revolution is passing by Northern Ireland because the country has failed to reclassify them like the rest of the UK did; current law classifies them as mo-peds instead of bikes, requiring additional tax, insurance and a license.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. Despite calling him “intemperate and reckless,” an Irish judge let a road raging Dublin man walk with probation and a fine for deliberately running down a bike rider — even though the driver had six previous convictions.

Outside takes a deep dive into the story of Jay Austin and Lauren Geoghegan, the American bike tourists on an around the world journey who were murdered by terrorists in Tajikistan two years ago, after 369 days on the road. The pair have been posthumously, and unfairly, ridiculed in some quarters for their positive outlook and faith in humanity.

After an Australian drunk driver ran down a bike rider, instead of checking on the victim or calling the Down Under equivalent of 911, he stood next to his car and texted his sister to call a good lawyer; he apparently found one, since the judge sentenced him to just three years behind bars.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former male pro cyclist Philippa York says transitioning to a woman after she retired taught her about transphobia and homophobia in the sport.

 

Finally…

If you happen to be carrying a bomb in your backpack, try not to break any bike laws.

And you’re not a real bike mechanic until you can forge your own bike parts out of aluminum cans over an open fire.

 

Morning Links: LA boots Uber bikes & scooters, Sarah Kate Levy kickoff party, and at least DTLA getting bike lanes

In a showdown of Old West proportions, Los Angeles has given Uber until high noon to get out of town.

Okay, Friday.

That’s because the company has balked on sharing dockless scooter and bikeshare usage data as required in their contract with the city.

And that’s usage, not user, data, the latter of which is supposedly kept hidden.

However, that ultimatum does not include their ride hailing service.

So feel free to keep those Uber gas guzzlers guzzling next week.

………

Bike and transit friendly Sarah Kate Levy is hosting a party to kick off the signature gathering phase of her campaign to unseat CD4 Councilmember David Ryu in Hollywood on this Saturday.

I’ll try to drop by to get my name on one, even if that means tearing my wife away from our so far unsuccessful search to replace the Corgi.

Because how can you replace an irreplaceable dog anyway?

………

Downtown Los Angeles is moving forward with bike lanes, even as the rest of the city stagnates.

https://twitter.com/LADOTlivable/status/1191503806929895424

Maybe if we could clone CD14 Councilmember José Huizar, the rest of us might finally see some, too.

Or at least him to teach the other councilmembers how it’s done.

………

Sometimes its the people on bikes behaving badly.

A prelim is under way for San Diego man accused of being the bike-riding serial killer who attacked a number of homeless people with knives and railroad spikes, and set two men on fire; he allegedly killed five people and injured ten more. Seriously, there’s not a pit in hell deep enough for someone capable of that.

A New York man was caught on video riding his bike onto a sidewalk, pulling out a gun and opening fire on a group of people in broad daylight; his intended victims can be glad he seems to be a bad shot.

………

Local

A writer for Los Angeles Magazine questions whether eliminating parking minimums will be good for DTLA, and says it’s unlikely residents would see lower rents as a result.

Bike Mag profiles LA-based street artist turned mountain biker Caché.

Climate activist Greta Thunberg is one of us, going for a Santa Monica bike ride with the former Governator; she’s been traveling the US by train and in Schwarzenegger’s Tesla.

This is who we share the roads with. An entire Long Beach family was tragically wiped out by a 20-year old drunk driver who failed to navigate a turn on Halloween, and ended up on the sidewalk they were trick or treating on.

 

State

An Encinitas bike rider politely points out that yes, there are more than 400 bike riders in the city.

A new controversy erupted when the husband of the mayor of Encinitas was rejected for board membership on the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, allegedly because he supports protected bike lanes, rather than vehicular cycling.

A San Diego woman suffered a compound leg fracture when she was hit by a driver while riding her bike in the city’s Mira Mesa neighborhood.

Apparently, it takes awhile for news to move south, as the San Diego Union-Tribune is just now catching up with the story that e-scooters aren’t as green as you might think; they’re only three months behind their own sister publication and the rest of the country.

A Bakersfield bike rider is in critical condition after yet another hit-and-run by yet another heartless California driver.

San Francisco bike riders fan out to document 259 drivers violating bike lanes in an eight hour period — one third of them on a single nine-block stretch of Valencia Street.

 

National

HuffPost says Democrats have a baffling blind spot when it comes to cars, wondering why the 2020 candidates won’t mention motor vehicles’ contribution to greenhouse gasses.

Now you, too, can be a real superhero when you ride your very own Captain Marvel Schwinn fixie.

A Washington letter writer calls for banning skateboards everywhere but skate parks. And probably wants to ban those, too.

Colorado leaders are discovering that when it comes to ebikes, resistance is futile.

Police in Missoula MT are carrying bike lights in their patrol cars so they can give bike riders without them a free set — and a ticket. We tried to get LAPD to do that for years, but with a warning instead of a ticket. But couldn’t find a deep enough pocket to pay for them. 

Wichita, Kansas considers adding a bike valet program for a new minor league ballpark currently under constriction. Which the Dodgers should have done years ago. And the Kings. And the Galaxy. And the LAFC. And the Lakers. And the Clippers. And the Rams. And the San Diego Chargers of Los Angeles…

Dallas considers reducing a dangerous six-lane virtual highway down to a four-lane boulevard as part of the city’s Complete Streets program. Hopefully they’ll get a little less backlash than Los Angeles officials did on the Venice Blvd road diet.

A Cleveland letter writer says there are good reasons why bicyclists might ride in a narrow roadway, rather than a nearby path.

A Boston paper says whoa, whoa, let’s not go too fast on installing bike lanes, despite arguments that they could be good for local businesses; right now, the city has a whopping 68 miles of bike lanes on its 880 miles of streets.

The New York Daily News applauds a new law requiring the city to update its street master plan every five years — and include an actual connected bike lane network.

 

International

Actor Henry Golding is one of us, at least on the big screen.

A London family is happy to get their bicycle built for three back after someone took it several weeks ago; a couple of local residents turned down a reward for finding it.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 85-year old English great-grandfather now holds seven age-group world records, after adding two more to his portfolio.

A Guardian podcast considers why more and more pedestrians are getting killed on our streets, and whether Silicon Valley really has the answers.

A BBC TV series makes the case that bicycles are the most popular form of transportation on the planet. And the most efficient, too.

A new Irish bike light automatically adjust brightness to road conditions, senses nearby traffic to switch to flasher mode when cars are nearby, and records that data to crowdsource a map of cycling conditions.

If you build it, they will come. Paris saw a 54% jump in bicycling rates in just one year after investing in new bikeways and bikeshare.

When you’re a high-ranking Delhi official, and can’t drive because of the city’s even and odd traffic days, just ride your bicycle.

Authorities in Kuala Lumpur threatened to use a law intended to assure parents supervise their children to prosecute those whose kids are ride basikal lajak, bicycles illegally modified with no brakes and chopped handlebars that allow riders to take the “superman” position. Note to Malay Mail — removing the frame might make a bike just a tad difficult to ride.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling says it may not be traditional road racing, but something new and interesting could rise from the ashes of the Amgen Tour of California.

 

Finally…

If you really want to sell your “well-established premium bike shop,” it might help to mention where it is. First there is a bike lane, then there is not bike lane, then there is.

And no, the middle of a sidewalk isn’t the right place to park your scooter. A bike lane isn’t, either.

 

Morning Links: Ex-Angeleno Maria Sipin honored, closing LA River bike path gap in DTLA, and no drop in solo LA drivers

Just a quick note before we start.

I’m planning to post again tomorrow, despite the call for websites to go dark in observance of the Global Climate Strike.

While I support the goals of the strike, I expect to take a couple days off next week to spend time with my brother once he arrives on his 4,000-plus mile tour of the western US.

I’ll also be observing my birthday on Tuesday, even though it’s going to be a sad one without the Corgi.

I just don’t want to risk going three or four days in a row without posting anything. So call me a scab, but I’ll be crossing the virtual picket lines tomorrow.

And if you want to give me something for my birthday, I’m registered with Don’t Get Your Ass Run Over On A Bike.

Seriously, ride carefully out there. I don’t want to have to write about you, or anyone else, unless it’s good news. 

Capisce?

Photo of Maria Sipin shamelessly stolen from Alice Awards website; see next item.

………

Let’s start out today with a pair of my favorite ex-LA advocates.

Former SCAG Active Transportation Planner Alan Thompson sends word that former LACBC volunteer and current People for Mobility Justice board member Maria Sipin is being honored with the Emerging Leader Award at Oregon’s Alice Awards, presented by the Street Trust.

Here’s how they describe the awards.

The Alice Awards celebrate our transportation heroes who continue to fight for safe and convenient walking, biking, and transit.

And here’s what they had to say about Sipin.

Maria Sipin will receive the Emerging Leader award. She is a transportation planner at the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT).  In addition to her work at ODOT, Maria works for the community via several venues, and she participates in The Street Trust’s Women Bike Program.

Maria is in her fifth year as a board member for the non-profit People for Mobility Justice based in Southern California and is a certified cycling trainer by the League of American Bicyclists.

Maria is active in working for the community on transportation projects and activism supporting the needs and rights of low-income communities of color, teen health, and LGBTQ youth of color.

I’ll add that she’s also one of the nicest, most upbeat and indefatigable people I’ve had the pleasure to work with.

So I hope you’ll join me in congratulating Maria Sipin.

She deserves this one.

Thanks to Alan Thompson for the heads-up.

………

We may finally get a bike path from Griffith Park to Long Beach.

As long as you’re willing to wait another six to eight years. And if Metro can find a spare $158 million or so under their cushions.

Streetsblog reports Metro’s Planning and Programming Committee approved moving forward with required environmental studies for three options to close the eight-mile gap in the LA River bike path through Vernon and DTLA.

Which, if you’ve ever tried to ride it, is a major pain in the ass right now.

The good news is, Metro already has $365 million in Measure M funding to pay for it.

The bad news, depending on the option they choose, it could run as little as $329 million, or as much as $523 million.

And won’t be finished until 2026 at best.

………

Is anyone really shocked that new census data shows single occupancy driving is down throughout the US — but not in auto-centric Los Angeles?

………

It’s been awhile since we’ve checked in with Long Beach expats and professional bike tourists The Path Less Pedaled, who take bicycling and painting excursion to Washington’s San Juan Islands.

………

You still have time to be entered to win free Cycliq bike cams just for reporting obstructed bike lanes.

And no, for those of us who live in Los Angeles, “all of them” is not acceptable.

I tried that already.

They also offer a page full of tips and reviews for buying a bike cam. Just in case you don’t win.

………

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

Physicians had to scrape a 67-year old British man’s elbow down to the bone to remove road debris after he was pushed off his bicycle by a masked passenger on a passing motorcycle. Yet remarkably, says he bears no malice towards his attacker.

But sometimes it’s the people on bikes behaving badly.

Police are looking for masked gunman who rode a bike up to a Chicago woman, and shot her in broad daylight on a crowded sidewalk; fortunately, she’s expected to survive.

………

Local

If you have a little extra cash lying around, give some serious thought to donating to the crowdfunding page for LADOT crossing guard Delia Huerta Arrearan, who was killed in a collision that also injured a student on Monday; so far it’s raised just over $2,400 of the $15,000 goal in the first day.

CiclaValley takes a challenging ride up to the Hollywood Sign.

 

State

Police in Porterville are accused of using excessive force to arrest five bike riders in their early to mid teens, including throwing one boy off his bike; they were apparently participating in a ride-out with up to 100 other people. Naturally, the police denied they did anything wrong.

A letter writer in Half Moon Bay makes a call for bike bells to give a warning to pedestrians. Or at least put them on all the rental bikes.

Frequent contributor Robert Leone says he’ll be volunteering with the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition’s bike rodeo at this Sunday’s Viva Calle San Jose open streets event in San Jose. If you go, try to find him and say hi for me.

Biking and walking advocates in San Francisco offer their suggestions on how to stop people in cars from killing people. They can start with reducing speed limits and installing speed cameras, as the story suggests, then block cellphone signals in moving cars — all of which would require changes to state law. Then move on to reducing the number of cars on the street.

Speaking of which, San Francisco is considering banning cars from some neighborhoods to address safety concerns. A similar proposal in Los Angeles would probably result in NIMBYs and traffic safety deniers rioting in the streets.

Concluding our San Francisco trifecta, bike advocates are applauding approvals of protected bikeways on both sides of the bay.

 

National

Men’s Health ranks the 100 fittest cities in the US. Shockingly, car-centric Los Angeles checks in at #16, while San Francisco tops the list, with San Diego and San Jose close behind.

No surprise here, as Streetsblog says federal transportation policy is undermining climate progress.

PeopleForBikes is giving away prizes for completing their 2019 Community Survey, including a bike from Burbank-based Pure Cycles.

A writer for Gear Patrol says a $6,000 ebike doesn’t beat his motorcycle for commuting to work, but it’s a lot of fun, anyway.

San Antonio TX police bust a serial burglar who terrorized a downtown neighborhood by stealing high-end bicycles and tools.

Fascinating, yet gut wrenching story of a Minnesota renaissance man — named Genghis Muskox, no less — who rafted down the Mississippi, built his own bikes and rode across Europe. Then was brutally murdered by an Iraqi war vet and fellow alcoholic suffering from PTSD.

Officials in Dayton, Ohio may remove a requirement to have bike bells on bicycles, which has been described as burdensome and a “ticky-tack” excuse to make a police stop.

The rate of regular bike riding in New York appears to have dropped by 5% over the last two years, even though it’s increasing in Manhattan and bikeshare memberships are up. However, a lack of infrastructure in the outer boroughs and this year’s rash of bicycling deaths could be contributing factors.

New York’s Streetsblog refutes “the five stupidest things” that were said at a recent community meeting called to address the mythical war on cars.

Yes, adults can learn to ride a bicycle, even if they’ve never done it before. A DC man took an adult bike training class, and managed to stay up upright for the first time in his 38 years.

 

International

London’s buses will soon try out new safety systems to prevent driver fatigue and keep them from running over you.

A British man is happy to get his stolen bike back, even though he had to pay the equivalent of $45 to a man who claimed he bought it; several accessories were missing, but they did fix his flat tire.

After catching a close call on his cam with a driver drifting into the bike lane he was riding in, a bicyclist in the UK concludes that paint isn’t infrastructure.

An Aussie website says painting eyes on the back of your helmet or attaching cable ties won’t keep magpies from attacking you.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews looks at why the punishing 3,000-mile Race Across America, aka RAAM, is cycling’s hardest race. I once met a competitor in several of the first races who said he started hallucinating by the time he got to Missouri, warning his support crew to watch out for dinosaurs on the freeway.

Britain’s Cyclist magazine considers how much the world championships have changed in the 37 years since they were last held in the UK.

Germany’s Tony Martin is bouncing back from a nasty crash in the Vuelta, and preparing to lead his country’s team in next week’s worlds, despite looking extremely worse for wear.

Probably not the best idea to tweet a photo of the broken bike that made a Swiss pro crash spectacularly (see below), since team bike sponsors usually don’t like things like that.

https://twitter.com/bguyot1982/status/1173298419894554628?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1173298419894554628&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2F266662-swiss-pro-cyclist-sheared-stem-crash-tweets-and-deletes-broken-bianchi-pic

 

Finally…

Maybe it’s time for shower helmet shaming. Kids, don’t bring your handlebars to class or unless you want to put the school on lockdown.

And more proof you can do just about anything on a bike.

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