She gets it.
Los Angeles Times columnist Erika D. Smith asks why the city won’t even study removing the 90 Freeway stub to nowhere, after the mayor and other local officials caved to LA’s notorious NIMBYs.
Mayor Bass had initially supported a federal grant request to fund a two-year study of the project, which would scrap the three-mile, lightly trafficked highway, potentially replacing it with low-cost housing and a massive linear park.
But in true LA fashion, the mayor and other local officials were for it before they was against it, listening to the loudest angry voices instead of the voice of reason.
Now, though, my excitement as well as (Streets For All founder Michael) Schneider’s has given way to familiar feelings of frustration. True to form for NIMBY-indulging Los Angeles, the political support he believed was solid has suddenly turned porous.
That includes Bass: “I do not support the removal or demolition of the 90 Freeway,” she said in a statement last week. “I’ve heard loud and clear from communities who would be impacted and I do not support a study on this initiative.”
L.A. City Councilmember Traci Park agrees with her. After conducting a very unscientific poll of her Westside constituents, she wrote in her newsletter that: “The 11th District does not support the demolition of the 90 Freeway. Your voice is why Mayor Bass rescinded her initial support.”
L.A. County Supervisor Holly Mitchell told me that, despite rumors to the contrary, she never decided to back a study or tearing down the Marina Freeway, which abuts her district in the unincorporated neighborhood of Ladera Heights. “But it’s a moot point now,” she said.
As Smith makes clear, what they’re all now opposing is nothing more than a feasibility study.
No one, at this point, is calling for the actual destruction of anything. And nothing regarding this project would be done for years, if not decades, that would inconvenience motorists in the slightest.
The flip-flopping pols cite a lack of public outreach their rapid NIMBY cave-in. Yet the reason there hasn’t been any is simply because it isn’t time yet.
Extensive outreach would be a major part of the study, and there’s no reason to do any outreach now, because there’s nothing to actually discuss at this point.
In other words, it’s not that it hasn’t been done. It just hasn’t been done yet.
So what’s the problem in just studying whether the project is feasible and practical, or even wanted — without spending a dime of city funds?
If the mayor is going to cave to NIMBY voices this easily, it doesn’t bode well for getting anything accomplished on our streets during her administration.
Inland Empire Rep. Norma J. Torres cosponsored legislation calling on federal government agencies to develop methods to better protect pedestrians and other vulnerable road users, as well as providing grants to cities to improved pedestrian infrastructure.
Prosecutors in Austin, Texas opened the murder trial of Kaitlin Armstrong for the shooting death of gravel cyclist Moriah “Mo” Wilson, revealing that Armstrong tracked Wilson through Strava to learn where she was staying.
In a chilling note, they also said that the last sound Wilson ever made was a scream of terror.
A memorial will be held this Friday evening in honor of 69-year old Tania Mooser, the woman killed by a driver in a Santa Monica collision last weekend.
San Diego is looking for more feedback on the city’s draft mobility plan.
Let’s just hope they don’t adopt, then ignore, the finished document, like a certain megalopolis to the north.
Your input matters! Check out Chapter 4 of the draft Mobility Master Plan to learn about the City's extensive community engagement and how your feedback has been incorporated into the draft plan.
— City of San Diego (@CityofSanDiego) November 1, 2023
Tell me again why you need an SUV to carry groceries home.
The cargo bikes of Delhi. pic.twitter.com/pOgbLM0piK
— Melissa & Chris Bruntlett (@modacitylife) November 1, 2023
The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.
No bias here. A San Francisco letter writer complains that the bike lane on the Richmond-San Raphael bridge “is a joke, foisted on the 40,000 commuters” who use the bridge each day “by the loud and elitist bicycle lobby and its virtue-signaling political allies.” Never mind that the gridlock he complains about is caused by too many people in cars, and won’t be relieved by ripping out the bike lane.
Portland, Oregon is in a dither over whether to rip out a bike lane that was “mistakenly” installed overnight without community input, as bike-riding residents block a large truck to prevent its removal after it was already in the process of scraping the paint off.
No bias here, either. A British mayor faced criticism for his “abysmal failure” to fulfill a campaign promise to rip out a bike lane that has seen several bicycling and pedestrian injuries, in addition to being filled with illegally parked cars. But those injuries couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the parking problem. Right?
Incumbent 4th District Councilmember Nithya Raman and challenger Ethan Weaver discussed transportation, transit and public safety issues in a debate sponsored by Streets For All, with both calling for increased efforts to prevent traffic deaths.
This is who we share the road with. The driver of a heavy electric truck somehow went airborne and slammed through the exterior wall of a pizza place in Hollywood. Which explains all the sirens and why there was a police helicopter circling around our apartment Tuesday night.
Santa Monica is creating a “strategic” 700-foot extension to the Michigan Greenway bike/walk project.
He gets it, too. A Manhattan Beach English teacher describes how he gave up his car for a one-hour bike commute to work, asking “why doesn’t everybody?”
San Diego will hold the 10th Annual Jim Krause Memorial Charity Cycling Ride the Point to support research to combat pancreatic cancer on November 11th.
A man was shot and killed by Riverside County Sheriff’s Department deputies in San Jacinto Tuesday afternoon when he pulled a gun as they ordered him off his bicycle.
Sad news from Bakersfield, where a person riding a bicycle was apparently killed in what the CHP described as a “high-speed collision.”
Santa Barbara is attempting to reduce conflicts between bike riders and pedestrians by installing a bike lane down the center of the city’s State Street Promenade.
San Luis Obispo County will build a 1.25-mile, $7.4 million bike path along the scenic stretch of coastline between Morro Bay and Cayucos, providing an alternative to biking on the busy coast highway.
More sad news, this time from Modesto, where a 36-year old homeless woman was killed by a driver while riding her bike last week.
About damn time. The San Francisco city attorney is suing websites that sell banned license plate covers that drivers use to illegally evade the police, tolls and tickets.
Bicyclists in Napa just got their first buffered bike lane.
And they get it. Electrek says we need fewer driverless cars, and more carless drivers. They also get bonus points for correctly using “fewer,” rather than the commonly used “less.”
Denial is not just a river in Egypt. The Las Vegas driver who killed BMX champ Nathan ‘Nate’ Miller as he rode his bike in the city claimed he’s a good driver who never had a crash before — despite 19 previous tickets, including for driving without a license.
A Colorado company has developed an online calculator to, um, calculate how much a city could save in both carbon and cash by investing in ebikes. Which serves as yet another reminder that California’s long-delayed ebike rebate program still isn’t rebating anything to anyone.
Kindhearted strangers pitched in to buy a North Dakota man a new ebike, just one day after his bicycle was snapped in half when he was struck by a motorist.
In another reminder that bikes mean business, a Chicago CEO recounts how he started his waste composting business by pulling a red wagon behind his bicycle to pick up food waste when he was still a kid.
A 45-year old randonneur describes the hit-and-run in upstate New York that left him with a fractured back and sacrum, a trashed bike, and a long recovery.
Artnet News tags along with Filipina American artist Jasmin Sian on her daily 15-mile bike commute on New York’s Hudson River Greenway, discovering how it helps inform her art.
Speaking of NIMBYs, New York’s mayor is attempting to un-install a new bike boulevard that is virtually finished by re-opening a call for community input, while continuing to micromanage bike lane projects and back off campaign commitments to build more.
A Memphis newspaper says the city’s depiction as the nation’s least-bike friendly city doesn’t tell the whole story, and that bicycling in the city is amazing and getting better — despite a death rate 21% higher than average.
GCN suggests the best Christmas gifts for bicyclists. Can we at least put off the Christmas talk until we put Halloween a little further in the rearview mirror?
Bicyclists in Windsor, Ontario are angry after a recent report showed the city built less than three miles of bike lanes in the last two years.
Life is cheap in the UK, where an “arrogant” speeding driver who killed a 77-year old man riding a bicycle while driving with traces of ketamine, cocaine and alcohol in his system, walked without a single day behind bars, as a prosecutor described his standard of driving as “just below” the threshold for dangerous driving. You would think that, regardless of the drug use, killing someone while speeding would be prima facie evidence of dangerous driving. But evidently, you’d be wrong.
A British self-described “cycling nut” is suing giant bikemaker Giant for the equivalent of over $243,000, after he broke his back in four places when the fork on his new carbon-frame bike separated from the steerer tube while he was riding, and the bike collapsed under him.
The star of Britain’s favorite TV commercial returned to the same hill he walked his bike up as a child to mark the 50th anniversary of the famous bread ad.
The Dutch city of Maastricht is addressing a plague of “wild parking” — illegally locking bicycles to lampposts or railings — by confiscating the illegally parked bikes and increasing penalties to get them back.
Czech carmaker Škoda’s We Love Cycling website considers why it took so long to invent the bicycle after the Mesopotamians invented the wheel.
Beijing, China is cracking down on traffic violations — and not just the ones committed by the people in the big, dangerous machines.
Dutch cycling star Jeffrey Hoogland broke the 1 kilometer time-trial world record in Aguascalientes, Mexico, averaging over 40 mph from a standing start.
And this is what it looks like to ride the world’s steepest street.
Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.
Oh, and fuck Putin