Tag Archive for Gil Cedillo

Support bike advocacy on Giving Tuesday, Metro rescinds disguised rate increase, and new bike lanes in CD1 at last

Happy Giving Tuesday!

It’s the day you give your hard-earned money to help one or more deserving organizations do some good in the world. 

We listed a handful of local organizations that deserve your support yesterday, like CicLAvia, Streets For All and LA’s legendary Bicycle Kitchen.

Other deserving LA and California bike groups include Calbike, Streetsblog, BikeLA (formerly the LACBC), SAFE and Walk ‘n Rollers

Then if there’s anything left under your sofa cushions, it’s also Day 5 of the 8th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

So let’s give a special thanks to Andrew G, David R, Eric L and SAFE for their generous donations yesterday to keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day. 

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Apparently, they heard us.

After transit users and advocacy groups rose up against Metro’s proposed new rate structure, which was presented as a “simplification” but would have resulted in a disguised rate increase for many riders, the LA County transit agency backed down.

Metro is now keeping the existing $1.75 fares and free transfers, while capping daily fares for multiple rides at $5, with an $18 weekly cap.

Which should work better for everyone.

While we’re on the subject, Metro is recruiting members for the agency’s Public Safety Advisory Committee.

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It looks like LADOT is getting a jump on “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo leaving office.

After nine years of blocking most, if not all, bike infrastructure in LA’s CD1, new bike lanes are beginning to appear on the streets of long-neglected Lincoln Heights now that Cedillo has lost his bid for a third and final term, with incoming Councilmember Eunisses Hernandez set to take office in two weeks.

Let’s hope it’s just the first of many, starting with deadly North Figueroa.

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Apparently, it is possible to build a bike lane that’s actually protected from motor vehicles, without relying on those little car-tickler plastic bendy posts.

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Speaking of Walk ‘n Rollers, the Culver City-based kids bike safety and education group is hosting a fundraising donut ride this Saturday.

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And speaking of CicLAvia, you can chase your donuts with America’s largest open streets event as it rolls through South LA on Sunday.

Fingers crossed that it doesn’t rain, though.

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‘Tis the season.

Seventy-five students in a Colorado elementary school were surprised with new bicycles thanks to a local nonprofit, after the kids watched a performance by a retired BMX stunt rider.

Hundreds of 3rd graders at a pair of Greenville NC elementary schools got new bikes, thanks to the Poway, California-based Bikes for Kids Foundation.

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

A Michigan judge faces a judicial ethics complaint after falsely accusing a bike shop owner of a racist assault after she demanded for a discount due to a problem with one of the bicycles; security video showed she was the one who actually assaulted the bike shop owner.

No bias here. Bike riders in Winnipeg, Manitoba were warned not to clear snow from city bike lanes or risk a fine, even if the city doesn’t do it.

A Toronto roadway vigilante asks if he was wrong to honk at a bike rider who started off from a red light during the Leading Pedestrian Interval, saying he’s tires of bicyclists making up their own rules; a columnist politely points out that there are too many traffic infractions at every intersection to enforce every one, and it ain’t his job anyway. Correction: I originally wrote that California bike riders are allowed to proceed along with the walk signal, in advance of the green light; however, Bryan J Blumberg explains that the rule won’t take effect until 2024. 

No bias here, either. London cops took a bike rider to task for swearing after they parked their unmarked car in bike lane, forcing the rider into the street — even though bicyclists are required to used the bike lane, and even though he had no idea they were cops. The Metro police later apologized, admitting the cops were wrong.

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

The FBI is continuing to search for a 38-year old armed robber, despite removing him from Ten Most Wanted list 18 years after he allegedly shot a 24-year-old armored-car guard five times in the head, then fled on a mountain bike with $56,000 in cash.

Students at England’s Cambridge University have a tradition of ignoring the university’s one-way traffic regulations, according to a university fellow.

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Local 

No news is good news, right?

 

State 

Calbike offers suggestions on how young people can get started in advocacy to get more people riding bicycles.

More bad news this week, as a 71-year old man suffered critical injuries when he was struck by a driver while riding in Rancho Santa Margarita.

Oakland is moving ahead with a $295 million package of infrastructure improvements between the city’s Jack London Square and a proposed new stadium at the port, including a bike path, regardless of whether it actually gets built.

 

National

VeloNews examines whether MIPS bike helmets really prevent traumatic brain injuries, as the manufacturers claim. However, you’ll have to sign up for a free account to read the story.

Bicycling looks at the problem of ever-shrinking passing zones, as bike lanes have failed to keep up with larger private vehicles — let alone vehicle sizes that force bike riders who don’t take the full lane even further into the door zone. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Bike Portland takes an early look at Oregon’s proposed ebike rebate program, which would offer up to $1,200 to purchase a standard ebike, or up to $1,700 for a cargo ebike. Although that could change as the bill moves forward.

Utah has suffered a 30 year high in bicycling fatalities; 15 people have been killed riding bikes in the state this year, with over a month to go.

Once again, authorities have managed to keep a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Utah man faces up to 20 years behind bars after pleading guilty in the drunken crash that killed a 13-year old boy riding his bike in a crosswalk; he was still on the road despite three previous DUI convictions, as well as violating court-imposed alcohol restrictions.

A sitting judge, who was the co-founder of the nonprofit Bicycle Coalition of New Mexico, was killed by her husband in murder suicide; he also shot a number of their pets before taking his own life.

A defendant in Colorado’s Operation Vicious Cycle bike theft scheme agreed to a plea deal of three years behind bars, followed by another three years of probation; seven other defendants are also accused of stealing high-end bikes from Denver-area bike shops for resale in a Mexican bike shop.

Good news, as Christian singer Amy Grant returned to a Memphis stage for the first time since she suffered a traumatic brain injury hitting a pothole on her bike in August; she was reportedly unconscious for up to 15 minutes following her fall. And yes, she was wearing a helmet.

New York’s fire department will require landlords to post a notice warning about the risk of ebike and e-scooter battery fires when charging them indoors.

Prosecutors in North Carolina have charged a driver with killing an Asheville man riding a bicycle, even though the driver played the Universal Get Out of Jail Free card by claiming he just didn’t see him; police say the area was well lighted, so the driver should have seen the victim in time to avoid the crash.

 

International

Road.cc asks its readers what’s the scariest thing that’s happened to them on a bike that didn’t involve a driver, with responses ranging from rampaging cows to exploding rims. In my case, it was probably when a log resting on a Louisiana roadway started moving when I rode closer, and snapped his alligator jaws at me as I swerved around it.

A writer for We Love Cycling makes the case for why requiring registration plates for bicycles doesn’t make sense.

A Japanese writer takes on the new rinko trend, defined as taking a folding bicycle on a train to explore your destination at the other end.

 

Competitive Cycling

A British man has been sidelined in advance of this week’s Cyclocross Masters World Championships after someone broke into his home and stole his bikes.

 

Finally…

Build your own DIY bicycle turn signals and brake light. Your next ebike could be your caddie, although it probably sucks at selecting the right club.

And presenting the answer for everyone who ever wanted to pedal through the library.

Or in it, anyway.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

 

PR plug for killer socialite, transportation ideas for CD13, and ex-Tour de France champ discussed in racist recording

Forget Black Friday. It’s just three more days to the official start of the 8th Annual BikinginLA holiday fund drive!

Thanks to our longtime friend Jim L for getting us off to an early start with his generous donation!

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The pre-trial PR campaign is kicking into high gear.

Wealthy socialite Rebecca Grossman, co-founder of the prestigious Grossman Burn Center, wants us to know that she is just so very misunderstood, and isolated from all her rich friends.

Just because she killed two innocent little kids while speeding along on surface streets at what police investigators have estimated as up to 80 mph in a 45 mph zone.

No, she says, she wasn’t drunk or street racing with her friend, former Dodger Scott Erickson, even though they were reportedly zig zagging and leap frogging one another’s cars.

And no, I don’t remember him, either.

I do, however, recall her victims, 11-year old Mark Iskander and his 8-year old brother Jacob, who were violently run down as they were crossing the street with their family.

She faces 34 to life if she’s convicted on both murder counts, and is walking free on $2 million bail pending a March trial.

Hopefully she’ll show up for that one, unlike five previous hearings.

Seriously, LA Magazine should be ashamed for allowing themselves to be used like this.

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Today’s must-read comes from Streets For All founder Michael Schneider, who has 11 transportation suggestions for newly elected CD13 Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martinez.

The ideas range from implementing the Sunset4All Complete Streets project, and the Temple Street lane reduction and bike lanes blocked by outgoing Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, to capping the 101 Freeway with a public park.

It’s more than worth the eight minutes it will take to read.

Let alone turning all the ideas into action.

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The LA Times has compiled an annotated transcript of the racist and otherwise offensive recording that lead to the resignation of former City Council president Nury Martinez and LA County Federation of Labor chief Ron Herrera.

The recording has also lead to repeated calls for councilmembers Kevin de León and “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo to resign, although the latter will be leaving next month anyway, after losing his bid for re-election, while the former refuses to do the right thing.

The conversation also bizarrely featured disgraced ex-Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong.

Kevin de León
Over the weekend, I called a buddy of mine who is a former U.S. attorney.

Nury Martinez
I have one of those, too. It’s good to have one of those.

Kevin de León
Cool. We’re very close. And he, he had the Lance Armstrong case too, when they were going to indict Lance Armstrong.

Nury Martinez
The cyclist?

Kevin de León
The cyclist. Yeah.

Nury Martinez
What did he do? Doping. Is it doping

Kevin de León
Yeah. And the case was coming out of the L.A. office of the U.S. attorney’s office here…

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Enter this number in your phone. And take it with you when you ride.

Meanwhile, Ann Arbor, Michigan, is considering following New York’s lead by offering a bounty on drivers who block bike lanes.

Maybe our new councilmembers could consider something like that here.

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This is who we share the internet with.

That was followed by this comment, from someone who apparently fails to grasp the concept of a protected bike lane.
Car drivers have to move over in the lane for obstructions all the time (mail trucks, trash trucks, etc.). How hard is it for a biker to move over? What happening to sharing the road?

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

No bias here. A regional transportation group has put a Des Moines, Iowa model bike safety on hold, somehow fearing a backlash over the common sense reforms.

A British driver was caught on video speeding down a protected bike lane, either oblivious to or not caring about the oncoming bike riders who were forced out of the lane.

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

A 20-year old man in the UK was sentenced to six-months time served for rebelling against his parents attempt to have him committed by brandishing a machete while riding with a group of other bike riders, even though the only injury anyone suffered was a dog bite after the group was chased by a small pack.

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Local

Babe star James Cromwell added his voice to a campaign to halt plans to restore the ecologically degraded Los Angeles Ballona Wetland Ecological Reserve, which includes plans for a ten-mile bike and pedestrian path; no word on what the pig had to say.

Ride hailing and micromobility provider Lyft has pulled all of their bikeshare bikes and e-scooters out of Los Angeles and Santa Monica, after failing to secure a longterm contract from city officials.

Glendale has received a $6 million state grant for the Verdugo Wash Visioning Project, which will create a 9.4-mile-long linear park and nature trail for walking and cycling, courtesy of Assemblymember Laura Friedman.

 

State 

A mountain biker used his bike as a shield when he was charged by a mountain lion on a San Luis Obispo trail, leading to a brief standoff before the big cat retreated. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

The $20 million bike and pedestrian path on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge is entering the final year of its four-year pilot program, as impatient motorists chomp at the bit to get it back.

The CHP has released a photo of the suspect vehicle in the hit-and-run that killed a man riding a bike in North Highlands earlier this month.

 

National

Fortune says the four-year old e-scooter industry is finally getting around to being as green and sustainable as they claimed, after quietly polluting for years.

No irony here. A Portland bike rider was lucky to escape serious injury when he was run down by a red light-running hit-and-run driver in a crash caught on video, while he was riding to an event to mark the World Day of Remembrance for victims of traffic violence.

A Kansas City business owner says his business is suffering because Missouri drivers are apparently incapable of figuring out a parking-protected bike lane.

A decades old Fayetteville, Arkansas bicycle charity is shutting down after giving away tens of thousands of bikes to kids in need; the 76-year old wife of the man known locally as the Bicycle Man continued the program for nine years after his death, and hopes to give away another 1,000 bicycles before shutting down after the holidays.

‘Tis the season. A Louisville country music station has collected over 1,500 bicycles, as well as monetary donations for Toys for Tots and the Salvation Army, to ensure that every local kid has a gift for the holidays.

The rich get richer, as New York announced plans to expand the city’s bike lane network next year.

A 60-year old New Jersey man is on his 14th bike trip across the US; he’s covered over 39,000 miles since he first hit the road on his ‘bent five years ago, after recovering from getting hit by a drunk driver.

‘Tis the season, too. A kindhearted Baton Rouge, Louisiana lawyer is giving away over 450 new bikes to local kids.

 

International

In honor of the World Cup, Road.cc creates their own all-star team of bike-riding soccer stars.

British residents say they want a bike with an ABS anti-lock braking system.

An Irish paper is up in arms after local officials “wasted” the equivalent of nearly $12,000 building a 600-foot separated bike lane, complaining it’s an “embarrassment” that even bike riders don’t want.

Pink Bike features seven weird and wonderful bikes currently for sale on the platform.

Hanoi, Vietnam is considering establishing a public bikeshare service to to reduce traffic congestion and environmental pollution, with 1,000 bikes at 94 stations.

 

Finally…

Your new fixie could be a Wu-Tang Clan bike. That feeling when the kids are riding on thin ice. No, literally.

And bike riding while blind and blind drunk.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Northvale Gap can kicked down the road, missing OK bike riders possibly found, and hope for safety once Roadkill Gil resigns

LADOT appears to be kicking the Northvale Gap can down the road once again.

Writing for Streetsblog, Jonathan Weiss reports the city transportation agency says construction on closing the gap along the E Line, nee Expo Line, through Cheviot Hills will now begin in 2024, after most recently promising to start this year.

This comes a full decade after the Westside train line, and the rest of the bikeway accompanying it, opened.

The city decided to skip the section along Northvale Road after litigious residents rose up in arms over fears that bike-riding burglars would utilize the path to make off with their big screen TVs and other valuables.

So instead of riding safely and comfortably in a channel behind their homes, bicyclists riding the Expo path are forced to take the steep hill in front of them, while the city forks out tens of millions more over what it would have cost to have closed the gap when the train line opened.

How that improves security, or anything else, for the handful of overly entitled homeowners along the street is beyond me.

Rendering of Northvale Gap Expo Line path from LADOT, courtesy of LA Streetsblog

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Heartbreaking news from Oklahoma, where four unidentified male bodies were pulled out of a river outside of the small town of Okmulgee on Friday, five days after four friends disappeared shortly after setting out on a bike ride Sunday evening.

Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up. 

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The sooner “Roadkill” Gil resigns, the sooner we can start seeing the safety improvements he’s blocked for the past nine years.

Although he seems to be dragging his feet.

Speaking of Eunisses Hernandez, it couldn’t hurt to get some bus, bike and pedestrian supporters on her staff, if you’re looking for work.

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A reminder that LADOT wants to talk bikeways in Del Rey tomorrow.

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Today’s common theme is ebikes.

Bicycling offers a guide to everything you need to know to start commuting by ebike, but were afraid to ask. Short version: Get an ebike, start commuting. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

The magazine also offers tips on riding an ebike in the rain, insisting you can do it safely with a few simple precautions. Once again, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. 

Marketplace says the popularity of ebikes is soaring, but not everyone is convinced — including host Kai Ryssdal.

And a government technology site says ebikes are gaining momentum as a solution for climate change and traffic congestion.

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

A teenage driver was arrested for ramming a bike rider outside Dublin, Ireland, apparently intentionally, in an assault that was stupidly recorded and posted online.

A British driver was fined a total of 451 pounds — the equivalent of $506 — for a breathtakingly close call after he ran a red light and nearly slammed into a boy crossing on his bike.

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

A Michigan man faces charges for robbing a business before making his escape by bicycle; police tracked the suspect to his home a few hours later.

Police in Ithaca NY are looking for a bike-riding man who pointed a gun at a motorist, for no apparent reason.

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Local

KTLA-5’s Sam Rubin and Eric Spillman completed last week’s Bike MS: Bay to Bay charity ride from Irvine to San Diego Bay. Although I’m not sure just what Bay they’re referring to in landlocked Irvine.

The Pasadena City Council voted unanimously to include the Arroyo Link in a request for Metro funding after the cancellation of a planned grade separation for the Metro L Line, aka Gold Line; it would create a multi-use path for walking, biking and jogging from Old Pasadena to the Arroyo Seco along the route of the partially built, 1899 elevated bikeway.

 

State 

San Diego’s bicycle-themed Rouleur Brewing Company won gold in Denver’s annual Great American Beer Festival for their Domestique Blonde Ale in the “Belgian-style Ale or French-style Ale” category; 11 other San Diego-area breweries were also honored.

San Francisco follows New York’s lead in exploring bounties to report drivers blocking bike lanes. If they’d do that here in LA, we could all retire comfortably.

 

National

Even Car & Driver questions whether it’s time to reverse the national “Right on Red” trend of the 1970s, as DC bans the procedure to protect bike riders and pedestrians.

Outside reviews ten plus-sized mountain bike shorts for men and women.

Milwaukee residents were outraged by video of a white man grabbing a Black teen by the throat while holding his bicycle to prevent him from leaving, accusing the kid’s friends of stealing a bike from the man’s friend’s yard. No word on how he knew they were the right kids, or that the teen had anything to do with it.

Over a hundred New Yorkers turned out for a bike tour of Harlem to demand a protected bike lane on Adam Clayton Powell Blvd to provide “Black and Brown people…safe passage to Central Park.”

A nonprofit and a local distributing company teamed up to give new bicycles to the entire first grade class at a Baltimore elementary school.

A South Carolina Uber driver faces a lawsuit for killing a man on a bicycle while he was checking the company’s app on his phone; he faces a charge of careless driving for somehow failing to see the rider decked out in a reflective vest, with front and rear lights on his bike, as he rode right in front of him.

A Florida man faces an attempted murder charge for shooting at, but apparently not hitting, another man in a dispute over bike parts outside a convenience store. As we’ve said before, no bike is worth a life. And especially not bike parts.

 

International

Road.cc examines the differences between gravel and endurance bikes.

Cycling Weekly explains everything you need to know before buying your first gravel bike, followed by five gravel bike upgrades to help you go faster and/or farther.

A delivery rider was attacked with a knife by a teen bike rider in a dispute that began when their bikes collided on a London bike path.

The Peak highlights six of the world’s most scenic bike trails, including the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route through the US and Canada, although they rank a Vietnamese trail as number one.

Olivia Williams is one of us, as the British actor rides her bike in London while she prepares to portray the new Queen Consort Camilla Parker Bowles in new season of The Crown.

An 82-year old English man says he’d rather go to prison than pay a £100 fine — the equivalent of $112 — after he was ticketed for riding a bike through the town center, just as he has for over 40 years.

She gets it. A Belfast, Northern Ireland columnist says vilifying bike riders is dangerous and irresponsible, and it’s selfish for drivers to complain about someone on a bicycle slowing them down. I like her already.

Irish families are reportedly distraught over plans to put a bike lane through a Dublin cemetery. Although something tells me the residents won’t object.

Bloomberg examines the decades-long campaign to reclaim the streets of Amsterdam for people on two wheels. Thanks to Victor Bale for the link.

Brussels’ Minister of Mobility, Public Works and Road Safety says death threats won’t stop her from implementing the city’s plan to reduce motor vehicle traffic by nearly 25%, while improving streets for people on two wheels or on foot.

The Associated Press of Pakistan offers a great photo of a man with his bicycle loaded down with a massive bundle of sticks.

 

Competitive Cycling

Road.cc talks with French road race and time trial champion Audrey Cordon-Ragot, who’s looking forward to next year after suffering a stroke on the eve of last month’s world championships.

American Nielson Powless got his first win of the year in his final race of the year, as his EF Education-EasyPost team took the top two spots at the Japan Cup.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can buy a brand new Porsche for just $11,750. Your next GMC could be a VanMoof. Or maybe vice versa.

And more proof you can carry — or tow — anything on a bike.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Martinez resigns as council president, but not from council, after racist remarks; and Streets For All happy hour with Mike Bonin

Following up on yesterday’s lead item, Los Angeles City Council President Nury Martinez resigned her position, but insisted on remaining on the council in the wake of racist and otherwise offensive comments on a leaked audio recording.

For now, anyway.

Also refusing to take responsibility are the other councilmembers included in the conversation, Kevin De León and “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo.

Although the only non-councilmember heard on the recording, LA County Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera, showed enough integrity to resign his position.

Now if the others would just follow his example, as the list of people calling for their resignations keeps growing.

Here’s a short sample posted by the LA Times.

The list of political figures and organizations issuing those calls took in Mayor Eric Garcetti, former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, U.S. Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, Reps. Adam B. Schiff (D-Burbank), Tony Cárdenas (D-Pacoima) and Jimmy Gomez (D-Los Angeles), an array of labor unions and two mayoral candidates — Rep. Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) and developer Rick Caruso.

Not to be left out, Streets For All joined the clamor — even though the loss of Martinez and De León could threaten hard-fought wins like adoption of a modified version of the Healthy Streets LA ballot measure and the Complete Streets makeover of Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock.

But sometimes, integrity has to matter more.

By my count, we’ve already seen three councilmembers convicted or currently facing bribery charges, with another — CD12’s John Lee — implicated but not charged in the bribery scandal that brought down his predecessor.

Meanwhile, Mayor Eric Garcetti’s bid to become ambassador to India went down in flames amid allegations he turned a blind eye to a top aide’s open sexual harassment of male coworkers.

Now three more elected leaders have been captured engaging in a racist conversation, as well as discussion of possibly illegal racial gerrymandering, and what appears to be a violation of the Brown Act open meetings law.

So if you’ve been wondering why our city hasn’t been more responsive to the needs of bike riders, and why nothing seems to get better in what should be — but isn’t — one of the world’s leading cities, we can start with a city government that looks to be rotten from top to bottom.

Photo from Wikipedia.

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In a very timely announcement, the next Streets For All virtual happy hour will feature a conversation with outgoing CD11 Councilmember Mike Bonin, whose Black toddler son was the subject of some of the most offensive comments from Martinez, De León and Cedillo.

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This is what it looks like when bikes are taken seriously as transportation.

Our German correspondent Ralph Durham forwards a photo of a bike repair stand next to an ebike charging stand for four bikes at his neighborhood biergarten.

Not shown, he says, is the bike tube vending machine on the restroom wall.

Photo by Ralph Durham

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

A pair of British men in their early 20s are facing murder charges in the death of 22-year old ebike rider; a third suspect has been released on bail, while a 30-year old woman has been arrested for helping them. Unfortunately, there’s no word on just what happened.

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

Police in South Wales are looking for a pair of men who assaulted another man as he rode his bike in broad daylight, for no apparent reason.

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Local

The LA Times has confirmed their previous endorsement of Kenneth Mejia for city controller, saying opponent Paul Koretz has fought efforts to make it easier to build more housing and blocked bike and pedestrian safety improvements, and “seems more interested in remaining in elected office than in being the taxpayers’ watchdog or government reformer.” Full disclosure — I’ve endorsed Mejia as well

 

State 

A 75-year old Yucca Valley man was pushed off his bicycle by a neighbor, then beaten with his own bike, in retaliation for pepper spraying the neighbor’s dog when it came up behind him the previous week.

Mt. Diablo State Park has added 30 bike turnouts on the popular Bay Area riding route, allowing bike riders to pull out to allow uphill traffic to pass.

 

National

Schwinn is introducing a new energy absorbing helmet liner to compete MIPS, designed to reduce rotational injuries in a fall.

Denver bike advocates are meeting with city officials to pitch a low-stress bike network.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A popular Bozeman, Montana high school teacher was killed when he was struck by a red light-running driver while riding his bicycle to work.

An op-ed from a Buffalo NY bike advocate makes the case that everyone benefits from effective bike and pedestrian networks, even drivers. Or maybe even especially drivers.

Philly bike riders are using expensive locks, AirTags and GPS, and social media to fight back against the city’s persistent bike thieves.

Frederick, Maryland is the latest community to introduce a book bike, intended  to take the public library to those who can’t come in themselves. Thanks to Robert Leone for the link.

 

International

Bloomberg Philanthropies is teaming with the Global Designing Cities Initiative to create the new Bloomberg Initiative for Cycling Infrastructure, which will award up to $1 million each to ten cities worldwide to help develop bike lane networks.

Cycling Weekly tries out the new Raleigh e-cargo bike, and says everyone loves it. The built-in kids seats are a nice touch.

A travel website recommends five “magical” Mexican towns to ride your bike in.

Winnipeg, Manitoba bike riders marked Canada’s Thanksgiving with an indigenous-led bike jam combining biking and music with lessons about colonization and reconciliation.

The UK’s British Cycling is being roundly criticized for signing an eight-year sponsorship agreement with oil and gas giant Shell to advise the group on how to achieve net zero. After all, who understands how to get to zero emissions better than an oil company?

A British bike advocacy group is calling on the government to close a loophole that allows people who would otherwise lose their driver’s license to keep driving, by claiming that suspending their license would result in an exceptional hardship.

A new Dutch app promises to tell when you fall off your bike, with or without automotive assistance, and automatically text someone for help.

Tragic news from Italy, where a British international sailing champion was killed when he fell 33 feet down a ravine while on a package mountain biking tour.

Sydney, Australia bicyclists say riding in the city is hard enough without police cracking down on bike riders in the central business district.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be made from recycled plastic.

And we might have to deal with angry LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about getting chased by a couple of angry moose.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Call for Martinez and De León to resign after racist rant, CicLAvia returns to DTLA, and vehicular murder in Griffith Park

Let’s start with a story that has nothing to do with bicycles.

And everything to do with all of us in Los Angeles.

A recording surfaced yesterday of City Council President Nury Martinez, Councilmembers Kevin De León and Gil Cedillo, and Los Angeles County Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera, using racist language while breaking down redistricting arguments strictly along racial lines.

Never mind calling their gay fellow councilmembers a “bitch” and a “diva.” Or referring to Oaxacan immigrants as ugly little people.

I won’t get into all it. You can, and should, read it on your own. Because as ugly as I make it sound, the reality is far worse.

Suffice it to say that Martinez described the Black toddler son of fellow Councilmember Mike Bonin and his husband as a monkey and a fashion accessory, while De León compared him to a Louis Vuitton handbag.

Both Martinez and Kevin De León have supported bikes in recent years, and the bike community have supported them in kind. And both have apologized for their comments.

But that’s not good enough.

Which is why I’m joining with countless other Angelenos and LA organizations calling for their resignations.

There is no place for open racism in our government at any level. It is simply unacceptable, and beneath contempt.

And if they don’t have the integrity to quit, we’ll may have recall them to force them both out.

The only reason I’m not calling for Cedillo’s resignation is that he has already, and deservedly, lost his bid for re-election. But if he had any dignity, he’d leave on his own, right now.

Which in his case is a pretty damn big if, given what we already know about him.

Meanwhile, this is also more proof that it’s time to take redistricting entirely out of the council’s hands, and let a civilian commission have the final say.

Photo of our intern and mascot on the new 6th Street Bridge during yesterday’s CicLAvia.

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In happier news, a good time was had by all at yesterday’s Heart of LA CicLAvia.

Or nearly all, anyway. A couple of firefighters indicated the day was mostly event free, despite a wave of injuries at the beginning of the day.

The route, which for the first time led to Echo Park and the new 6th Street Bridge, saw a massive turnout as Angelenos took advantage of the near perfect weather.

My wife and I, and corgi, included.

Here are a few photos to capture the day.

Nikita of the Real Rydaz poses with her bike.

Both award-winning bikes were built by Will of the Real Rydaz.

Frank Gehry’s new The Grand LA adds to the LA skyline.

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This is who we share the road with.

What started out as yet another a hit-and-run in Griffith Park ended with a murder charge.

News broke Saturday evening that a pedestrian had been killed by a driver earlier in the day. The woman fled the scene, leaving her victim to die in the street on Fern Dell Drive.

The driver was arrested the following day, after investigators concluded that the 70-year old victim’s 32-year old girlfriend had intentionally run him over — using his own car — following an argument.

Sonia Sovereign reportedly confessed to the crime, and is being held on a murder charge on $1 million bail.

And it may not have been her first brush with the law, as a woman with the same name, and the right age, led Colorado police on a drunken chase half a decade earlier.

Just one more argument for why cars don’t belong in the park. Or any park, for that matter.

………

Michael Siegal of South Pas Active Streets forwards news of a successful first Walk and Roll at two South Pasadena elementary schools.

Local community organization South Pas Active Streets organized three “bike bus” rides to school on October 5th to Arroyo Vista and Marengo elementary schools. Coinciding with South Pasadena Walk or Bike to School Day, these chaperoned, safety-in-numbers bike rides created an active way to get to school for children who otherwise might not have the opportunity.

Over 30 children and 20 adults participated in one of three different routes to school.  With a core group of riders starting the ride at one end, participants would join the bike bus along its route as it wound its way toward school.  Besides parents, volunteers on these rides included members of DUDES South Pasadena and Mayor Michael Cacciotti.

South Pas Active Streets seeks to provide safe opportunities for active mobility, supporting our childrens’ health, independence, and well-being.  With the success of Wednesday’s first-ever South Pas Walk and Roll, the organization will be coordinating more bike buses and walking buses in the future.

More information on the event, the routes and photos are at southpasactive.org/home/south-pas-walk-and-roll

………

I’d be more impressed with the new protected bike lanes on San Vicente if they weren’t half in the gutter.

But at least the city is building something in the mobility plan, for a change.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1578168132589346816

………

As we mentioned last week, CSUN is hosting a family-friendly Bikefest in two weeks.

Thanks to Steven Hallett for the heads-up.

………

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

A failed candidate for state legislature took credit for throwing a red plastic cup full of cider at a Chicago alderman, as he rode past on his bike with about 50 other people to examine existing bike infrastructure and brainstorm improvements. If you can call it “credit,” that is.

No bias here. Louisville KY writer complains about “militant” bicyclists, who hide their anti-car agenda “behind code words like safety, health, vibrant and even equity.” Um, sure. Let’s go with that.

Someone is sabotaging a DC bike lane by repeatedly dumping construction nails into it.

In an apparent attempt to thin the herd, a separated bike lane in Manchester, England, is shared with truck drivers headed the opposite direction to a delivery bay, resulting in a bizarre game of chicken as drivers go head-on towards people on bikes.

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

Police in Santa Barbara are looking for a blond man who allegedly fled the scene by bicycle after beating a man to death, before possible stealing a car to complete his getaway.

An English man faces charges for mowing down two bicyclists while speeding downhill and riding salmon in a London park, and barely missing another rider.

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Local

An op-ed in the LA Times looks at the new law decriminalizing jaywalking in most circumstances, and the historic automotive hegemony that led to jaywalking laws in the first place.

A man in his 50s was critically injured in a Westminster hit-and-run while riding his bike Thursday evening.

 

State 

Camarillo approved a proposal to authorize just over $910,000 to hire engineering and environmental consultants for a planned $6 million bike lane extension on Central Ave. Although that’s a hell of a lot of money for just a third of a mile of bike lanes, so let’s hope there’s more to it than that.

Sad news from San Jose, where a man riding a bicycle was killed when he was struck by two separate motorists, one of whom fled the scene.

The Stanford student paper examines the presence of roundabouts on campus, explaining that they serve to slow drivers below 25 mph.

Just days after Alameda’s mayor killed plans for a protected bike lane, he raised it back up from the dead.

A planned 47-mile bike trail through the Napa Valley wine country could turn it into a bicycling destination to rival Provence.

 

National

A writer for an RV site recommends ebikes for the RV life.

Seventy-seven years after the end of WWII, an Italian man is riding from Seattle to Phoenix to retrace his grandfather’s journey as an Italian prisoner of war.

A Utah truck driver bought a new bike for a five year old boy because he felt bad about the crash that sent the kid to the hospital.

A Denver writer applauds the city for moving quickly to expand its bike network while listening to feedback from the community.

My bike-friendly Colorado hometown is getting its first advisory lane on a street I grew up riding. Something tells me it will go a little better than a similar street design did in San Diego.

Life is cheap in Massachusetts, where a 91-year old driver walked with a lousy traffic ticket for right-hooking a bike rider, who was seriously injured when he landed in the car’s back seat after crashing through the closed rear window. But at least the police asked to have his driver’s license revoked.

A rescue swimmer used a borrowed beach cruiser to save an elderly Florida man and woman, and their dog, following Hurricane Ian.

 

International

Engadget proclaims this the age of the cargo bike. Thanks to Victor Bale for the tip.

The newest Roman Catholic saint was one of us. Italian Artedime Zatti was famed for riding his bicycle throughout the Argentine town of Viedma with a medical case to care for the sick.

She gets it. An op-ed by a Toronto advocate says if we want to get more people on bikes, we have to change our cultural and political deference to cars first.

Nice BBC report on an Indian man who has opened a museum to house his collection of over 150 bicycles, many of which he restored himself. And insists he’s not doing it for the money, but just wants to share them with the world. Thanks to Norm Bradwell for the link.

New Zealand’s Stuff says cycling clubs are disappearing because they can’t afford the onerous traffic management plans.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar edged Enric Mas to defend his title at Il Lombardia, the year’s final Monument; the race also marked the last competitions for former Grand Tour champs Alejandro Valverde and Vincenzo Nibali, who care calling it a career.

Belgium’s Philippe Gilbert is also calling it a career after one last race in Sunday’s Paris-Tours, which was won in a sprint by defending champ Arnaud Démare.

France’s Pauline Ferrand-Prévot won the inaugural women’s gravel World Championship, while Belgium’s Gianni Vermeersch upset Mathieu van der Poel to take the men’s title.

Italian time trial specialist Filippo Ganna shattered the hour record, traveling 56.792 kilometers in 60 minutes — 1.2 km further than the previous record, set by Britain’s Dan Bigham less than two months ago. That works out to a whopping 35.289 miles.

Ganna not only broke the record, he unified the title by also beating Chris Boardman’s 26-year old “superman” record.

Cycling Tips offers photos from Ganna’s record-setting ride.

Five weird ways cyclists bent, if not broke, the rules.

British bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid profiles L39ion of Los Angeles co-founder and CEO Justin Williams.

 

Finally…

Britain’s wackiest bike race. That feeling when your competitor for a city council seat rescues your stolen ebike bike from a homeless camp, and you still have to run against him.

And now you, too, can race your own hologram.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Not guilty plea in DUI hit-and-run death of Andrew Jelmert in Griffith Park, and LA Times endorses Cedillo opponent in CD1

No surprise here.

Thirty-seven-year old Jairo Martinez pled not guilty for the alleged drunken, hit-and-run death of Andrew Jelmert in Griffith Park last month.

Martinez was charged with felony counts of murder and hit-and-run driving resulting in death, as well as a misdemeanor charge of driving with a suspended or revoked license following a previous DUI conviction.

He reportedly ran away on foot after killing Jelmert, who was participating in a training ride for next month’s 545-mile AIDS/LifeCycle Ride.

Martinez remains behind bars on $2 million bail.

The murder count stems from receiving a Watson notice after his previous DUI conviction, which states that he could be charged with murder if he kills someone while driving drunk anytime in the future.

………

There might be hope for LA’s 1st Council District after all.

Current CD1 Councilmember “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo has apparently made it his life’s work to throttle traffic safety projects that pose the slightest risk of inconveniencing motorists or annoying local business owners.

Like the fully funded and shovel-ready lane reduction on deadly North Figueroa he halted as one of his first acts upon taking office, after holding a series of sham public meetings with predetermined outcomes. And despite vowing to support the project when he was begging for our votes.

An act he followed up by actively blocking bike lanes in the district he runs like a fiefdom, going so far as trying — and thankfully, failing — to have every bike lane in CD1 removed from the city’s mobility plan.

Yesterday, though, the Los Angeles Times took the rare step of endorsing the opponent of a sitting councilmember, selecting progressive policy advocate and community organizer Eunisses Hernandez over Cedillo.

Here’s the salient part of the endorsement for our purposes.

The council member (Cedillo) has also been a barrier to building bike infrastructure and street projects designed to make it safer and easier for people to travel without a car. Council District 1 has some of L.A.’s most deadly streets, yet he voted against the city’s Mobility Plan to make the car-dominated streets safer and more inviting for pedestrians, bicyclists and transit. He blocked bike lanes, including directing city staff to remove bike lanes from the widened Spring Street bridge.

Hernandez, on the other hand, has made transportation and street safety top priorities within her larger environmental justice and climate change agenda. She said she would launch community reviews of the most dangerous intersections, and advocate for bike lanes, bus benches and shelters, redesigned streets and pedestrian plazas, so it’s easier for people to get around without cars.

Cedillo was in serious danger of losing last time around when the community rallied around challenger Josef Bray-Ali — until Cedillo’s campaign leaked a handful of intemperate, ill-advised and offensive comments Bray-Ali had posted to various websites.

It will be interesting to see what Cedillo comes up with this time to attack his opponent. Let’s hope Hernandez has a few less skeletons in her closest.

Because people in CD1 are dying for a less regressive representative.

Too often, literally.

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A KABC-7 remote broadcast captures an attempted bike theft in the background on live TV.

I love LA! Live ABC7 story about Chappelle; watch the background. from LosAngeles

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Yet another reminder to register your bike today.

And yes, it’s free, for life.

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Bicycles. Good as gold for more than 125 years.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1523753747968831490

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A partially paralyzed filmmaker offers a short video calling for greater trail access for e-mountain bikes.

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Okay, I’m impressed.

Even if it would be easier to just pick it up and walk up.

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Local

Vice talks with Silver Lake resident Eric Brightwell, who has been living carfree in Los Angeles ever since his broke down 11 years ago, leading to the unexpected discovery that he doesn’t need one here.

Metro will hold a public meeting on the 18th to discuss the agency’s proposed budget for the next fiscal year, which funds a return to pre-pandemic levels of service.

A Santa Clarita kid was lucky to escape without injuries when a hit-and-run driver ran him down as he rode his bike in a parking lot. Although the local paper seems to have missed that part about a bike in their own story. Thanks to Joe Linton for the heads-up.

 

State 

Seal Beach police announced a crackdown on drivers who threaten the safety of bike riders and pedestrians ths month through speeding, failing to yield to pedestrians or bicyclists, illegal turns and running red lights or stop signs. Although nothing says they won’t ticket you for the same violations, so ride to the letter of the law while you’re in the city.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A man was killed in Encinitas when he got out of his car to pick a flower on the other side of the road, and was stuck by another driver.

Seriously? A San Diego TV station says someone was taken to the hospital following a collision between a driver and a bike rider, but they aren’t sure which one was injured. Yet somehow, the Union-Tribune was able to figure it out.

Katy Perry is still one of us, going for a Mother’s Day bike ride on the beach somewhere in California with her 20-month old daughter and fiancé Orlando Bloom.

 

National

Planning Magazine writes in praise of the humble sidewalk, calling it the best infrastructure investment communities can make.

Money Inc. considers the most important things to wear mountain bikingI’d say pants, but that’s just me.

A Mt. Hood ski area is banning bikes this summer, after paying out a $10.5 million settlement when a mountain biker was paralyzed hitting a signpost placed directly next to a double black-diamond trail.

Denver bike riders are putting up signs around the city to remember the victims of traffic violence, and remind drivers of the risk they pose to others on the road around them.

Speaking of Denver, the city’s recently enacted, first-in-the-nation ebike rebate program is already driving an increase in ebike sales at local bike shops.

Frustrated with the city’s inaction, a small group of Chicago bike riders conducted their own DIY traffic study at an intersection where a bike rider was killed, catching drivers running red lights and driving at pedestrians in the crosswalk, as well as threatening the study volunteers.

A Pittsburgh driver pled guilty to ten charges, including vehicular homicide and DUI, for killing a man riding a bike while the driver was high on heroin.

Once again, a faulty ebike battery has torched a bike shop, this time in New York.

Writing for New York Streetsblog, a 20-year transportation engineer calls for responsive countermeasures to curb traffic violence, and “reach the very small percentage of dangerous drivers who can’t be stopped otherwise.” Although most of us might call it a large percentage.

A Delaware beach town installs sharrows in a misguided attempt to protect bicyclists, apparently unaware that studies show sharrows are worse than nothing. Although they do help drivers improve their aim at us.

WaPo offers an introduction to gravel biking.

 

International

Nova Scotia gets its first bicycle traffic signal, which halts right turning traffic so bikes can cross the intersection.

A delivery rider from Brazil is on trial for killing a 16-year old boy in Dublin, Ireland, in a confrontation with another man over the theft of a second delivery rider’s bicycle. And yes, that’s every bit as confusing as it sounds.

A British paper talks with the motorists who helped bring a couple of road racing drivers to justice for killing a man riding a bicycle, who had the misfortune of being in their way.

 

Competitive Cycling

British pro Tom Pidcock won Sunday’s mountain bike World Cup race in Albstadt, Germany by a wheelie big margin, popping a wheel as he crossed the finish line. Sorry.

  

Finally…

Live out your bike mechanic dreams, without leaving your sofa. When you can’t decide whether to ride a bike or a kick scooter.

And maybe the Dutch one hit wonders were a lot cooler than we thought.

Correction: Two-hit wonders. Thanks to Opus for the catch.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

SoCal bike riders suffer critical injuries, Roadkill Gil shows his windshield bias, and shiny new Riverside Drive bike lanes

It’s been a rough few days for SoCal bike riders.

In addition to a man killed by a hit-and-run driver in LA’s Cypress ParkCitizen reports a bike rider suffered “grievous” injuries when they were struck by a driver in the Pico-Union neighborhood Tuesday evening.

And a 13-year old boy suffered life-threatening injuries when he was run down by a cargo van driver as he was riding his bike in Beaumont Monday morning; needless to say, the 19-year old driver was not ticketed or charged. Although Patch says the victim was a girl.

………

Anti-bike CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo demonstrates his windshield bias, while showing he has no great love for pedestrians, either.

Thanks to John Lloyd for the heads-up. 

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LADOT shows off the freshly painted — and soon to be bollard protected — bike lanes on Riverside Drive.

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If someone loaned you a bike pump during Sunday’s Marathon Crash Ride, LA Bike Dad would like it back, please.

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It’s no surprise when AAA gets bike safety wrong.

Or when Peter Flax calls them on it.

Speaking of which, a Tucson, Arizona driver who apparently lacked the ability to change lanes somehow felt the need to blare their horn at a parent protectively riding with a small child on an otherwise quiet side street.

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

Welsh police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who intentionally ran down a man riding an ebike, sending the victim to the hospital with serious injuries.

No bias here. An Aussie columnist responds to a vicious road rage attack on a bike rider by calling for safer roads and better protection for bicyclists. But something seemingly got lost on the way to the headline.

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

A man and woman will spend the rest of their lives behind bars for the murder of a Fremont CA executive chef to cash in on his life insurance policies; a neighbor saw the man ride his bike away from the victim’s home after hearing gunshots.

………

Local

No surprise here, as Los Angeles continues to lead the nation with country’s most polluted air — and some of the highest gas prices —  as the city has failed to provide any safe and effective alternatives to driving, despite the mayor’s Green New Deal and a groundbreaking mobility plan that continues to gather dust. Although there may be hope.

Streetsblog explores Huntington Park’s new 10-block, half-mile long linear Veterans Park, complete with a paved biking and walking trail.

 

State 

California Streetsblog offers a compendium of bike and pedestrian bills in the state legislature. Although the question is less what they can pass as what can get past Gavin Newsom’s veto pen, who appears to be trying to out Jerry Brown Jerry Brown.

Time to take those baseball cards out of your spokes. The California Senate Transportation Committee has approved a bill that would allow six cities, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, to use automated noise monitors to ticket loud cars and motorcycles, similar to red light cams.

San Diego continues its bikeway expansion, with plans to install a protected bike lane on a one-mile section of Park Blvd in the University Heights neighborhood.

Palo Alto sacrificed a more than $900,000 federal grant to build separated bike paths and traffic-calming measures in the south part of the city, after failing to get their shit together for the past five years.

San Francisco continues their successful quick-build program, approving plans for a buffered and parking-protected bike lane on Evans Ave, despite a lack of protection in some areas. To which Los Angeles responds, “Wait. How can you build something without years of public meetings to water it down until it doesn’t offend or protect anyone?”

They get it. Davis police blame an inattentive driver for pulling out of a parking lot without looking, cutting off a seven-year old girl riding her bike with her grandmother and siblings, and dragging her under the wheel well; fortunately, she’s expected to recover after surgery to repair a broken leg.

 

National

To paraphrase a popular poster from the ’60s, free parking is not healthy for children and other living things.

Bicycling wants to tell you how to choose the best bike lights. But only if you subscribe, since this one doesn’t seem to be available on Yahoo.

More on the Fox News meltdown over Joe Biden’s bike ride on the beach, as Eric Trump questions what message it sends the world when the president is riding a beach cruiser in the middle of a weekend day. Maybe that it’s not time to panic, and it’s okay to take a breath before diving back in to save the world.

This is what we need in Los Angeles. Eight Seattle bike riders are suing the city over injuries they received while struggling to ride through an unfinished section of a popular bikeway. If every LA bike rider who was injured on one of the many unbuilt bikeways contained in the mobility plan sued the city over it, we might actually force them to build out the damn thing.

Las Vegas announced plans for a 17-acre bike park, which will finally give visitors to the city something to do after they lose all their money.

Colorado corrected a well-intentioned mistake by legalizing Stop As Yield, aka the Idaho Stop, throughout the state. A previous version of the law allowed individual jurisdictions to approve it, resulting in a patchwork where a bike rider could legally roll a stop in one city, and get ticketed for it in the next.

This is who we share the bike path with. A Montana driver was busted for his 4th DUI in 12 years when he was stopped for driving on a Kalispell biking and walking path. Just one more example of authorities keeping dangerous drivers on the road. Probably not the best idea to threaten the cop, either. 

Sad news from the DC area, where a beloved bike advocate and bike race organizer was killed when he was run down from behind by a van driver while riding in Maryland; 51-year old Shawn Blumenfeld rose from a bike courier to a respected leader in the bicycling community.

A DC driver kept apologizing after blowing through a stop sign, and hitting a father with his two-year old daughter on the back of his bike; the little girl suffered a small skull fracture, despite her father positioning his bike so he took the brunt of the impact. Maybe instead of apologizing, just don’t run stop signs and try not to crash into people on bicycles.

 

International

Apparently, recording scofflaw drivers and reporting them to the police makes you a snitch, at least in the eyes of a London columnist. I’d gladly accept that mantle if they’d just legalize video-based infraction and misdemeanor prosecutions on this side of the Atlantic. 

Bicyclists in the French city of Lyon have started a competition to find the worst parking jobs by drivers — or as they put it, “Garé comme une merde,” which loosely translates to “parked like crap.”

 

Competitive Cycling

WaPo spends a day with pro cyclist Ayesha McGowan, the first Black rider in the women’s pro peloton, as part of their series on the daily lives of working women.

Sad news from Colombia, where former pro and six-time Tour de France cyclist Samuel Cabrera was killed in a lightening strike while working on his farm; he was 61.

Italian cyclist Sonny Colbrelli was reportedly conscious and feeling okay, a day after collapsing at the finish line of Monday’s stage of the Volta a Catalunya.

Scary/funny moment in Spain’s Volta a Catalunya, where Mattias Skjelmose Jensen went over the side of the road. And rose up from the deep drop demanding a new bike before heading off to a top ten finish.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you have so many stolen bikes they’re visible on Google Earth.

And everyone knows you can’t go grocery shopping on a bicycle, right?

Right?

https://twitter.com/gspeng/status/1506497277866643456

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Invitation-only Taylor Yard Bridge opening excludes public, and killer distracted driver walks for running down bike-riding family

My invitation must have gotten lost in the mail.

After a previous false start, Los Angeles officially opened the new Taylor Yard bike and pedestrian bridge over the LA River, in an invitation-only event.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports the bridge has been under discussion for a full 30 years, before work finally started in 2019.

When Metro re-industrialized the downstream end of Taylor Yard, siting a Metrolink yard there, community groups sued Metro for not following environmental law. In a 1992 settlement Metro agreed to pay for several community benefits, including a pedestrian bridge. For decades, the promised bridge project suffered from false starts. Ultimately Metro paid for the $25 million dollar bridge, which was built by L.A. City’s Public Works Department’s Bureau of Engineering.

Never mind that three decades of delays meant it ended up costing over five times the original $5.3 million estimate.

And no, Linton didn’t get an invitation, either, despite reporting on the bridge even longer that we have. But he ended up crashing it on a bicycle, ignoring both the lack of invitation and the admonition to arrive by car.

No, really. The city wanted everyone to drive to the opening of a bike bridge.

The good news is, the bridge is open at last, providing safer and more convenient access between Frogtown and Elysian Valley to the south, and Glassell Park and Cypress Park to the north.

A previous public opening was cancelled at the last minute, with the city doing such a crappy job of getting the word out that would-be attendees who showed up anyway were left wondering where everyone else was. No explanation was ever given for the cancellation.

Maybe they were afraid people from the bike community might actually show up.

Because this is how Linton ended his piece.

Cedillo and O’Farrell have histories of being hostile to bicyclists. O’Farrell’s bike antipathy has been more subtle, other than his notoriously snide anti-bike safety tweet in 2018. Cedillo’s anti-bike stance has been more overt. Both have canceled approved bike safety projects in their districts: Cedillo on North Figueroa Street and on the North Spring Street Bridge, and both colluded on the cancelling of a Temple Street road diet. Both are Democrat incumbents facing elections this year, with challengers to their ideological left. It is a sad state of affairs that it now appears that they fear allowing the public – including the press and those pesky cyclists – to celebrate the opening of a really great thing they have done for bicycling in L.A.

And yes, I was the one on the receiving end of that snide O’Farrell tweet.

Today’s photo is the invitation you didn’t get to the bridge opening, even though you — and the rest of us — paid for it. 

………

Evidently, life is cheap in Massachusetts.

In the conclusion to story we’ve been following for the last two years, a 45-year old Massachusetts woman walked without a single day behind bars for the distracted driving death of a father as he was riding bikes with his family.

Ryane Linehan pled guilty to negligent homicide, admitting she was texting when she killed the man and seriously injured his wife and adult son.

Yet she still got just an 18-month suspended jail sentence, along with six months of home confinement, three years of probation and 100 hours of community service.

Maybe it’s just me, but a lousy six months sitting at home watching TV and eating bonbons seems more like a staycation than punishment.

The only good news is she won’t be allowed to drive for the next 15 years. Which isn’t nearly long enough.

………

Good question.

………

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

No bias here. An Iowa appeals court affirmed the right of a town to block a short street connecting two multi-use trails, forcing bike riders and runners moving between them to use a dangerous highway — because local residents didn’t want a trail through their community in the first place.

An English pub owner complained that a new bike lane was an accident waiting to happen, warning it would result in collisions between bike riders and pedestrians. Then blocked half of it with advertising barriers to help ensure he was right.

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

English police are looking for a bike-riding man who yelled racist abuse at a driver before kicking her car, after she challenged him for using a cellphone while riding.

………

Local

Los Angeles received a $5 million grant to beautify Boyle Heights’ Hollenbeck Park. Except the only thing that would really beautify it is to move the damn 5 Freeway, which cuts directly through it. Except that would probably cost a hell of a lot more.

A woman in her 30s was found dead next to the beach bike path in Long Beach Sunday morning, with no apparent cause of death.

 

State 

A San Diego bike rider suffered a fractured skull when he was run down by a hit-and-run driver in Balboa Park Sunday night; fortunately, his injuries were not considered life-threatening.

San Luis Obispo is opening a new bike and pedestrian bridge connecting a new section of trail through the town.

East Bay bike advocates are pushing for the first protected bike lane through the San Francisco suburb of San Leandro.

Sad news from Modesto, where a 38-year old woman riding a bicycle was killed by a suspected drunk driver on Sunday.

 

National

Oklahoma has approved a 400 mile section of the US Bike Route 66 though the state.

That’s more like it. A 19-year old Florida man got 15 years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a seven-year old boy riding his bicycle. Although anyone so heartless they could leave a little kid to die alone in the street deserves a lot more than that.

 

International

He gets it. Treehugger’s Lloyd Alter says governments should subsidize ebikes instead of gas prices — including Gavin Newsom’s proposal to rebate gas taxes paid by California drivers.

No irony here. Toronto NIMBYs are demanding the removal of a protected bike lane by claiming it makes it too hard for ambulances to respond to injured bike riders, because all the cars get in the way.

Canada’s Prince Edward Island announced a $100 rebate on bicycle purchases, with a $500 rebate on ebikes.

A Welsh bike advocate explains how taking political candidates for a bike ride can help them seem the local community from a new perspective. Not to mention give them a better understanding of the dangers we face.

Life is cheap in Wales, where a 71-year old man walked with probation and a 15-month driving ban for yelling racist comments at a group of bike riders and telling them to go back to England, before backing his car up and crashing into them; fortunately, no one was seriously injured.

A new British poll shows broad support of using ebikes to reduce carbon emissions, even among people who aren’t currently thinking about buying one.

UK advocates are petitioning the government to stop using the word “accident” in official documents, and to use “collision” instead; if they get 100,000 signatures, Parliament will be required to take it up.

It took the 1973 OPEC oil embargo to put Copenhagen on the path to a bike-friendly future.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Weekly offers five takeaways from last week’s Paris-Nice.

 

Finally…

Your next ebike could look like folded paper, and be made by Yamaha. Rocking Rod Stewart, pothole repairman.

And meet a four-year old bike riding superhero.

https://twitter.com/biker_tiny/status/1503075842896932874?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1503075842896932874%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-14-march-2022-291043

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

“Roadkill” Cedillo claims he supports safe bike lanes, popular Cal Poly ride returns, and riding with one hand free for drivers

Turns out CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo is just misunderstood.

At least, that’s what he says.

A concerned resident reached out to the councilmember, who earned the sobriquet Roadkill Gil for his opposition to street safety projects, to ask what he has against bike lanes.

This is the eye opening response they got.

Hi there! We are not against bike lanes. We support safe bike lanes and public safety is a top priority for us. When putting in bike lanes, we want to make sure that we are taking into consideration the safety of vehicular traffic as well as pedestrian traffic so that cyclists can cycle safely. For example, I’ve been advocating for the LA River Bike Path, a bike path that is able to connect from one end to another, safely, along the River on the Arroyo.

This from the councilmember who made cancelling the shovel-ready lane reduction on deadly North Figueroa one of his firsts acts in office, after holding a series of sham public meetings where the outcome was largely predetermined.

And after he pledged his support for it when he was asking for our votes

That was followed by Cedillo’s vote against approving the city’s Mobility Plan 2035, including a motion to have virtually every pending bike lane in his district removed from the plan.

His was one of just two votes against the plan, the other coming pseudo-environmentalist Paul Koretz. Even though many of the immigrants in his district that he claims to champions rely on bicycles as their sole source of transportation.

Never mind all the kids who need to get to and from school without getting killed.

He also teamed with CD13’s Mitch O’Farrell to kill another shovel-ready road diet on Temple Street, in the wake of the disastrous rollout of the Play del Rey lane reductions.

And we recently learned that Cedillo was responsible for blocking the previously approved bike lanes on the Spring Street Bridge. Which were replaced with six-foot painted shoulders on each side, where the bike lanes could have easily gone.

That’s a lot of unsafe bike lanes he courageously halted to protect our safety, and all those poor, suffering drivers.

But at least he supports the LA River bike path. Which, coincidently, moves bike riders off the road and doesn’t inconvenience people in the big, dangerous machines in any way.

But clearly, he’s just been misunderstood in his many efforts to keep us safe by keeping us off the streets.

I mean, he said so himself.

Or someone in his office did. It’s hard to say just who’s on the other end of an electronic conversation.

And he certainly wouldn’t lie to get our votes as he runs for re-election.

Again, that is.

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Our friend Michael Wagner, author of East LA County’s indispensable CLR Effect, dropped a line to let us know Cal Poly Pomona’s popular Town and Gown Ride will be returning March 25th, after a two-year pandemic layoff.

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GCN offers a brief lesson on five skills every bike rider should know. Riding one-handed is particularly important so you can use the other one to gesture at drivers.

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

More anti-bike sabotage, as someone apparently left dozens of tacks strewn across a London foot tunnel used by bike riders.

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

Police in Sacramento are looking for a bike rider who slapped three women on the ass in separate sexual assaults on two local college campuses; police believe it may be the same man in all three attacks, though two victims described a cruiser bike, while the other said it was a BMX. As we’ve said before, that’s not a prank, it’s not flirting and it’s not funny. It’s a crime.

Tragic news from New York, where a Brooklyn woman has died, five days after she was struck by a man riding an ebike while crossing the with her husband; the bike rider has been charge with possession of a controlled substance, but not for the crash itself. Yet.

Pennsylvania police are looking for the bike-riding man who broke into a number of storage units; no word on whether he actually took anything.

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Local

Just five more days to offer your input on plans for the Ventura-Cahuenga Blvd corridor; comments close Tuesday.

Beverly Press talks with CD5 city council candidate Scott Epstein, the former chair of the Mid City West neighborhood council, about his commitment to help the homeless and make streets more bike and pedestrian friendly. I’ve known Epstein for over a decade, and he’s definitely the bike-friendly voice we need after an unlucky 13 years of Paul Koretz.

This is the cost of traffic violence. The LAPD is looking for the hit-and-run driver who killed a hero father who saw the speeding car coming and pushed his wife and child out of the way before taking the impact himself.

 

State 

Orange County Bicycle Coalition ED points bike riders to Cycling Savvy’s online course to learn how to ride safely.

Santa Maria has received a $2.5 million state grant to repave and beautify the Battles Road pedestrian and bike path corridor, while adding art along the pathway.

 

National

Former NBA star Shawn Bradley says he didn’t know if he was going to die as he lay sprawled on the pavement, after being rear-ended by a driver while riding his bike near his St. George, Utah home; the crash left him alive but paralyzed from the shoulders down.

Police in Daytona, Florida have arrested a suspect in the throat-slashing murders of a married couple as they rode their bicycles home last weekend; no motive for the murders was announced.

 

International

Cycling News offers advice on how to build your dream bike on a budget.

Former Talking Heads frontman and bicycle evangelist David Byrne lists his five favorite cities for bicycling. Needless to say, Los Angeles ain’t one of them

A Belfast, Northern Ireland bike shop owner is selling stickers to support Ukraine and raise funds for Ukrainian refugees.

A London writer says if you want to make women feel safer, start by improving safety for bike-riding women.

Wales says 20 is plenty, committing to dropping speed limits to 20 mph next year on residential streets, as well as roadways with a lot of pedestrians.

After police concluded an English man was killed when he rode bicycle into a tree, a top lawyer insists he was the victim of a too-close pass, while his boss said called him an expert cyclist, and said the idea that he simply lost control of his bike while taking a swig from his water bottle just isn’t credible.

The European Cyclists Federation says bicycling is becoming the new normal across the continent.

Pirelli bike tires will now be made in Italy once again. .

 

Competitive Cycling

There may be hope for American cycling, after all. Quinn Simmons captured the climber’s jersey after a long attack on stage 4 of the Tirreno-Adriatico, hours after Brandon McNulty and Matteo Jorgenson finished first and third, respectively, on Thursday’s stage of the Paris-Nice race, making it a rare hat trick for the next-gen Americans.

Speaking of American cyclists, 36-year old Alison Tetrick pens a love letter to her bike, thanking it for an amazing ride over the past decade and a half.

Belgian cyclist Remco Evenepoel likes to go fast in his car, too, losing his drivers’ license for three weeks after getting caught going nearly twice the speed limit.

Egan Bernal continues to recover from the training crash that nearly left him paralyzed.

 

Finally…

Your last mountain bike could have had a gearbox.

And higher gas prices are just an attempt to force drivers to give up their gas guzzlers in favor of electric cars.

Or maybe ebikes.

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

New bike lane appears on North Figueroa, 16-year old critical after SaMo hit-and-run, and upper Ballona Creek bike path closure

Maybe we should check the weather forecast.

Because hell appears to have frozen over.

Streetsblog reports that a new painted bike lane has been installed on a .8 mile section of North Figueroa in Cypress Park.

Which wouldn’t be major news, except it’s located in the 1st Council District, where Councilmember Gil Cedillo has worked to block bike lanes since taking office nine long years ago, while keeping North Figueroa one of the deadliest corridors in Los Angeles.

Cedillo has gone so far as to ask the council to remove all proposed bike lanes in CD1 from the city’s mobility plan, arguing that the people in his district don’t ride bikes. And evidently forgetting that many people in the immigrant-rich district rely on bikes as their primary, if not only, form of transportation.

It’s not clear why the councilmember, whose opposition to safety projects earned him the moniker Roadkill Gill, had an apparent change of heart.

One clue comes from LADOT spokesperson Colin Sweeney, who notes that the new bike lanes wouldn’t inconvenience the people in cars.

L.A. City Transportation Department (LADOT) spokesperson Colin Sweeney wrote that “StreetsLA recently completed resurfacing on Figueroa after which LADOT restriped the street to bring it up to current standards. In this instance, restriping created space to add a bike lane to the existing configuration without impacting other road users (no impact on parking or number of travel lanes).” North Figueroa was repaved between Pasadena Avenue and the 110 Freeway.

Although neighborhood advocate Felicia G. has another, equally plausible explanation.

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Another day, another SoCal hit-and-run.

The Santa Monica Lookout reports a 16-year old girl is in critical condition, and a 29-year old man is behind bars following yet another hit-and-run collision.

The victim was injured around 2 a.m. Sunday, when Maximiliano Ramos Santiago allegedly slammed into her bike at Chelsea Ave and Santa Monica Blvd in Santa Monica.

Santiago was arrested at his home yesterday, and booked on charges of felony hit-and-run and driving without a license.

Which would have given him plenty of time to sober up, assuming he had been drinking, which is highly likely given the time of the crash.

Let’s hope she makes a full and fast recovery.

And that the driver who did this is held fully accountable for leaving a young woman bleeding in the street.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Santa Monica Police Investigator Evan Raleigh at 310/458-8954, or call the watch commander at 310/458-8426.

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It looks like the upper section of the Ballona Creek bike path will be out of commission for the next four and a half months.

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Local

A letter writer takes the LA Times’ Robin Abcarian to task for questioning the value of Vision Zero when, she said, eliminating traffic deaths is doomed to fail. Although that name of that letter writer seems sort of familiar.

 

State

Getting flowers by bike in San Diego.

Solano Beach has rejected a $10 million claim from the family of 75-year-old Allen Hunter II, who was killed by an alleged drunk driver while riding in a painted bike lane on Highway 101 in the city last summer; filing a formal claim is the first step before filing a lawsuit, and usually gets rejected pro forma.

A letter from Streets For All founder Michael Schneider argues that Rancho Mirage can, and should, make convert Highway 111 into a real street that meets the needs of all users, rather than just the ones in cars. Exactly the same arguments apply to PCH in Malibu, as well, which should be the city’s Main Street, instead of a sewer for pass-through drivers and their cars.

Residents of a San Mateo neighborhood overwhelming oppose plans for a bike lane network, preferring preserving street parking over the safety of people on bicycles; however, people in the rest of the city support the project.

Santa Rosa police are looking for a suspected bike thief who used a fraudulent ID and credit card as security to take a $7,000 mountain bike out for a test ride, and never came back.

 

National

Streetsblog invites you to vote on the worst kind of bicycle infrastructure; among the choices are Orange County favorite painted bike lanes next to high speed roadways, and sharrows, which only exist to help drivers improve their aim and thin the herd.

The New York Times says pedestrian fatalities are spiking, due in part to a surge in reckless driving. Although it’s possible that the jump in reckless driving might just have a tiny bit to do with carmakers ads showing that’s exactly how you’re supposed to drive their damn cars.

Electrek marked Valentines Day with a look at the best ebikes designed to carry two people.

A new $15 steerer tube cap promises to secure an Apple AirTag out of sight to locate your bike if its ever stolen.

Fast Company says Peloton should have seen it coming.

Writer Mitch Albom, author of The Five People You Meet in Heaven and The Stranger In the Lifeboat is one of us, making a call for people in Detroit to donate their underused bicycles for people who can’t afford a car.

A new documentary follows seven Boston women who ride their bikes through the city at night.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Pennsylvania man is still riding at 90 years old, although the area’s hills mean he does most of his riding inside. Which makes him an ideal candidate for a ped-assist ebike to get back on the road. 

Police in Virginia are looking for a 74-year old diabetic man who went missing Sunday morning while riding his bike to a friend’s house around eight miles away; his daughter says he may be in the early stages of dementia.

 

International

Cycling Weekly says friends don’t let friends buy bikes that seem too good to be true. And probably are.

Thieves cleaned out a Welsh family’s entire collection of nearly $30,000 worth of mountain bikes.

Now you, too, can ride the legendary cobbles of Flanders.

 

Competitive Cycling

A trio of pro cyclists explain how they keep their relationships from going off the rails while living a bike-centered life. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

If you can’t get it out, dissolve it. What it’s really like to be a pro cycling race photographer.

And I’ll take any excuse to see Sophia Loren on a bicycle, even if she is facing the wrong way.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1493299001520803843

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

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