Tag Archive for Pacific Beach

Encinitas declares bicycling emergency, support for Pacific Beach Slow Street, and car death cult piece misses mark

About damn time.

Encinitas has joined its North San Diego County neighbor Carlsbad in declaring a state of emergency for “bicycle, e-bicycle and motorized mobility device safety” in the wake of the death of 15-year old Brodee Champlain-Kingman

Champlain-Kingman’s family announced his death on Saturday, after he was struck by the driver of a work truck on Thursday.

However, the planned state of emergency action items reported by San Diego’s NBC-7 seem a little lacking.

The local emergency allows the city quicker access to resources necessary for education and enforcement, if needed. Some actions that the city council hopes to accomplish include the rental of 10 messages boards that will be placed in high-visibility areas reminding both riders and drivers to share the road, 300 yard signs urging safety, additional work with schools to educate students on-campus and a bike safety video made in unison with the San Diego Sheriff’s Department that can be played at assemblies and meetings.

The declaration places the most of the onus for safety on the potential victims riding on two wheels, rather than the people in the big, dangerous machines.

Because yard signs and message boards aren’t likely to slow drivers down, and won’t do a damn thing for the distracted drivers who don’t even see them.

Yes, it’s a start.

But if Encinitas really wants to save lives, they’ll need to lower speed limits and redesign roads to prevent speeding, as well as crack down on any form of distraction behind the wheel.

And it wouldn’t hurt to work with other North County cities to improve safety along the entire coast highway corridor.

Meanwhile, hundreds of people turned out for a candlelight vigil to honor Champlain-Kingman.

Thanks to Phillip Young and Marcello Calicchio for the heads-up.

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These days, every street project that might possibly inconvenience someone is contentious.

Usually, needlessly so.

That’s certainly the case with the Slow Street project on Diamond Street in San Diego’s Pacific Beach neighborhood, where all of four — yes, four — people rose up at a recent Town Council meeting to complain about it.

Yet the local paper still headlined it as “Pacific Beach residents express displeasure over city’s traffic plans for Diamond Street.”

Did I mention that it was just four people who complained?

Fortunately, the local representative for the City Council Mobility Board, who was also the researcher who evaluated the project, wrote to the San Diego Union-Tribune to support the project.

…The benefits are staggering. The project led to an increase in walking and biking mode share, and children and older adults using the street. Driving mode share decreased by nearly 60 percent with a smaller impact on traffic on adjacent streets.

People reported a greater sense of community and well-being. Most were using the street for transportation and half planned to visit a business during their trip. Most importantly, there was overwhelming support for making the project permanent.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but “overwhelming support” is probably more than four.

A lot more.

She goes on to say that making Diamond a permanent slow street shouldn’t even be up for debate, since it gets San Diego that much closer to meeting its Climate Action Plan and Vision Zero goals.

Let’s hope the city council is listening.

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Progressive magazine The American Prospect missed the mark.

A writer for the magazine makes the case against the “death cult of the American car,” noting the divergence between dropping traffic death rates in Europe, and rising rates in the US.

But he goes off track at the end in blaming neoliberalism of the 1980s and ’90s for the American failure, which he argues resulted in less government oversight, drawing a straight line leading to today’s massively oversized vehicles, overly wide roads and high traffic death rates.

The problem with that is traffic deaths prior to the ’80s were significantly higher than even the nearly 43,000 deaths in both 2021 and 2022, while today’s per capita deaths are just a fraction of the 1960s and 1970s.

There’s no arguing that traffic deaths are too high, and getting higher, and that poor road design and the ever-increasing size of motor vehicles are at least partly to blame, along with a dramatic increase in distracted driving.

But fondly remembering the good old days when traffic death rates were even worse doesn’t help.

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I have somehow miraculously recovered the ability to embed tweets.

Which comes in handy, with this must-read thread from People Powered Media regarding the poor conditions on the new bus and bike upgrades on Venice Blvd.

And yes, I’m including the links above in case the tweets below somehow disappear.

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I’m not sure if we shared this short film from Nimesh in Los Angeles when it came out last December.

So we’ll correct that possible oversight today.

In it, he argues that LA’s flat terrain and year-round Mediterranean climate should make it the bicycle capital of the world. But it isn’t, because Los Angeles makes biking in paradise a nightmare.

Thanks to Steven Hallett for the heads-up.

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Robert Leone forwards news that the Marines will apparently be blowing things up on Camp Pendleton again.

Which means that the popular bike path through the base will be closed from July 31st to August 4th.

So if you’re planning to ride south from Orange County, or north from San Diego County, you’ll have to use the shoulder of the freeway from the Las Pulgas Gate north to the tunnel under I-5.

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Some things don’t need translating.

Ralph Durham forwards a video for the proposed Complete Streets transformation of a Munich, Germany arterial.

Like he says, Google Translate is your friend. But I don’t make friends easily, so I’ll let him give you the shorthand.

I got a newsletter from the German Cycling Federation ADFC, and in this issue it shows a proposal to do a street makeover for a major arterial into the center of town. Next step is through the city council.

The numbers for users from 2011 to 2022 are amazing. The north end of the project runs into a nasty intersection that has been undergoing total renovation for the last 4 years. The existing situation shows 9,300 users on bikes daily. There are a couple of pictures of the existing bike lane. Unreal usage, but it is a main route direct into the city center.

It would be great if it gets through the city council.

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

This is who we share the world with. Even the bike-riding mayor of Emeryville has to deal with wannabe killer drivers. Unfortunately, though, this doesn’t cross the legal threshold for a threat, since it lacks a statement of intent — “I would” vs “I will.”

https://twitter.com/JohnBauters/status/1674278161012645888

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

Police in Hermosa Beach are looking for a young man who rode off on a gas-powered beach cruiser after allegedly throwing fireworks into a crowd of people.

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Local 

This is who we share the road with. The LAPD is looking for a serial hit-and-run driver in a $90,000 electric Porsche Taycan who smashed into three cars in three separate crashes while driving on Main Street in DTLA at 3 am, before disappearing into the night.

West Hollywood will keep e-scooters on the streets for now, but calls on city officials to renegotiate provider contracts while imposing a 10 mph speed limit in the city.

 

State

After a Garden Grove councilmember said he doubts there’s much demand for bike lanes in the city, a bike-riding writer responds by suggesting he try riding some of the really scary ones that separate bike riders from speeding drivers with just a thin strip of paint.

Carpenteria’s new Santa Claus Lane Bikeway will have a temporary opening this weekend in time for the 4th of July holiday; it will close again this fall for final installation of a permanent barrier rail.

Santa Barbara will keep a nine-block stretch of State Street closed to cars for at least the next three and a half years, while continuing to allow bicycles.

Streetsblog’s Roger Ruddick says don’t ride on San Francisco’s new Valencia Street protected bike lane because it’s unsafe.

 

National

US Magazine rounds up the summer’s best deals on ebikes. Although with emphasis on deals rather than the actual quality of the ebikes.

Bike Portland’s Jonathan Maus says we’re having the wrong conversation about ebikes, as people predictably point fingers at kids on bikes while calling for mandatory licensing after the death of a teenage bike rider.

A 45-year old Las Vegas man died nearly a month after he was struck by a speeding motorcyclist while riding his bicycle.

Any city can do Bike to Work Day. But my bike-friendly Colorado hometown hosts an annual Bike Prom.

Life is cheap in North Dakota, where an 88-year old driver faces a single misdemeanor hit-and-run charge for running down a pair of bike riders participating in an annual fundraising ride from Texas to Alaska, then fleeing the scene. Once again raising the question of how old is too old to drive. And suggesting that he may be on the wrong side of that line. 

The family of a 14-year-old boy pinned to the ground by an off-duty Chicago cop who mistakenly accused him of stealing a bike is suing the city and the police officer; Michael A. Vitellaro was acquitted of official misconduct and aggravated battery in the incident earlier this month.

New Orleans bicyclists demand change as deaths spike in the city with the highest per capita rate of bicycling deaths in the US.

Vermont relaunched what was the nation’s first statewide bike rebate program, but with just $150,000 available for ebike vouchers.

Over 1,200 people applied for ebike vouchers in just the first few hours of Connecticut’s ebike rebate program. Which offers a warning for California, which has only $7.5 million left for rebate vouchers when its program finally launches

An 84-year old Pennsylvania man faces charges for the hit-and-run death of a 64-year old bike rider, after his own dashcam turned on him. Again raising the question of how old is too old to drive. And once agains suggesting he may be on the wrong side of it. 

 

International

Momentum Magazine offers advice on how to stay cool and fresh while bike commuting in summer weather.

Off.Road.cc suggest eight tips to help motivate you to get back on your bike.

Yanko Design recommends the top ten accessories to upgrade your bike this summer, including zip-on knobby tire treads, and a face air filter that will make you look like Batman supervillain Bane.

Hundreds of Calgary residents called for keeping a popup cycle track after the city threatened to tear it out.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list, as Cycling Weekly rides the 100-mile off-road Trans Cambrian Way through the least populated district of Wales.

A Scottish bike messenger founded Gay’s Okay six years ago to make “simply adorable apparel” while building more inclusive spaces for LGBTQ+ bike riders.

An Indian man has traveled through 180 countries on a globe-trotting, 120,000-mile bike ride to call attention to HIV/Aids, with just 11 more countries to go.

The hit-and-run epidemic has spread to Thailand, after a 47-year old man was found lying dead on the side of the road near his mangled bicycle, shortly after separating from his riding companion.

 

Competitive Cycling

Three-time world champ Peter Sagan escaped a DUI charge with a three-month suspended sentence, after he was stopped in Monaco last month riding a scooter while under the influence; the sentence will allow him to compete in what will be his final Tour de France.

British cyclist Tom Pidcock says he loves descending, but is having second thoughts after he was hit hard by the death of Swiss cyclist Gino Mäder during a steep descent on the Tour de Suisse.

We Love Cycling predicts Jonas Vingegaard will win the Tour de France – unless Tadej Pogačar does.

American cyclist Kristen Faulkner’s hopes of returning to this year’s women’s Tour de France and the Giro Donne are in jeopardy, after she suffered a “small” knee fracture when she was struck by a driver while training in California. Read the first link on AOL if Bicycling blocks you. 

 

Finally…

At last, mountain bike shorts for expectant mothers. Forget trendy dance moves, now you can watch Le Tour on Le TikTok.

And answering the burning question of whether accused killer Kaitlin Armstrong is related to Lance.

Um, no.

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Eid Mubarak to all those celebrating today. 

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

Oh, and fuck Putin.