Tag Archive for Slow Streets

Ped superhero Peatónito studies LA Vision Zero fail; Slow Streets win at LA Council, and bike rider busted for Metro murder

I’ve never been one for the whole superhero genre, preferring to find heroes in real life.

But I make an exception for Mexico City’s caped protector of pedestrians, the legendary Peatónito.

So I was pleased when he popped up in my inbox today, courtesy of an email from pedestrian advocacy group Los Angeles Walks.

Nowadays it feels like we can all use a hero or shero. So we’re happy to introduce Peatónito! He comes to us from Mexico City, where he began his masked work saving lives and slowing traffic. And Peatónito has traveled beyond, from NYC to Los Angeles, fighting against the crime of poorly designed streets & sidewalks and reckless driving through creative public demonstrations and street theater.

This summer, Los Angeles Walks partnered with the crime fighter as we trained future generations of peatónitos and organized for safe street changes. He finished his training at UCLA’s Institute of Transportaiton Studies, where he penned a pedestrian manifesto (or his graduate capstone paper) titled The Pedestrian Battle of Los Angeles: How to Empower Communities to Plan and Implement Pedestrian Road Safety Infrastructure.

And what a manifesto it is.

Even a brief summary nails the city’s gaping equity gap, as well as the experience most of us have had in fighting for a safer city, for people on two feet or two wheels.

• Walking in a non-white census tract increases the probability of being killed or severely injured by a motor vehicle in Los Angeles (Figure 1). Black people are only 8% of the population, but 20% of all pedestrian fatalities. Meanwhile, median income, vulnerable age (children and older adults), and the number of cars in a household do not have a statistically significant relationship with pedestrian road safety.

• City council members are responsive to residents’ demands and threats opposing pedestrian-focused traffic safety. Even when other city agencies and LADOT support these improvements, the city council has more power over deciding the outcome of road safety infrastructure plans. Consequently, there is a need to balance this power dynamic.

• Affluent, car-oriented residents tend to have stronger influence over council members, who prioritize their concerns over those of underserved people. This power dynamic in LA permits small groups of noisy stakeholders to hijack a conversation; they manipulate the narrative to make it seem convenient for everyone. It is vital to give more power to the people that fight for safe streets, whose voices

“The pedestrian is nobody in this city, he has been forgotten by authorities and our own citizenry. The curious and paradoxical thing is that we are all pedestrians at some moment. As such, we have forgotten ourselves.” – Peatónito

 

Here’s how Los Angeles Walks succinctly sums up Peatónito’s recommendations.

• The City must recommit and strengthen the Vision Zero program, a city-wide initiative to reduce traffic fatalities to ZERO by 2025.

• The City budget should adequately fund and staff all of Vision Zero’s goals, including the Dignity Infused Community Engagement (DICE) project.

• The state should get rid of the 85th percentile rule, a state rule that requires speed to be set at the average of ongoing traffic, which has led to what many call “speed creep.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Let’s hope he sticks around. LA pedestrians — and bike riders — could really use our own superhero.

Photos and quotes courtesy of Los AngelesWalks

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Speaking of which, it looks like people won out over cars in the City of Angels for a change.

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They got her.

Twenty-five-year old Los Angeles resident Irma Monroy was busted for the murder of a Metro employee at DTLA’s 7th Street train station, after she allegedly stabbed the victim in the chest following a heated dispute.

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There’s truly a special place in hell for the Arkansas driver who — allegedly — rammed a woman jogging on the side of the road with his pickup, then carried her off and sexually assaulted her before burying her beside a rural road.

Let’s hope he ends up in a very deep, dark pit for a very long time. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

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The bike swap meet scheduled for this weekend by the Mid City West Community Council has been postposed until the following weekend.

Which could come in handy now that the bike boom has cleaned out many bike shops.

MCW Neighborhood Bike Swap
Sat. Oct. 31st, 2020 Halloween!!
7765 Melrose Ave, (Sportie LA parking lot across from Fairfax High)
9 am  to 1 pm. 

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This is why you need to register your bike.

Now.

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Here’s your biennial reminder to get out and bike the vote.

https://twitter.com/starryflo/status/1317571256456159234

And yes, I want to be like him when I grow up.

Meanwhile, it’s nice to see a community organization pressing the candidates for LA’s 10th Council District about their stands on active transportation.

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Looks like The New Yorker is catching up on the city’s coronavirus bike boom.

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

Business owners in Bristol, England are calling for the removal of a new bike lane, claiming it’s killing their business. Because evidently, ripping it out makes far more sense than trying to entice the passing bike riders into their shops.

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

A bike-riding San Bernardino County man has been busted for a series of peeping, burglary and indecent exposure incidents.

Heartbreaking news, as a dog died five days after a bike rider allegedly kicked it in the head for no apparent reason as his owners were running with him on a Minnesota trail. Although something tells me there may be more to the story; bicyclists usually don’t kick at a dog unless it’s attacking them.

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Local

Another paper from UCLA’s Luskin Center documents a century of failed efforts to reign in LA traffic.

 

State

Sad news from San Diego, where a man apparently died of natural causes while mountain biking on a canyon trail near the Miramar National Cemetery.

Santa Barbara considers installing a docked ebike bikeshare system on the city’s main street.

More sad news, this time from Porterville, after a hit-and-run driver was arrested for killing a 15-year old boy as he rode his bike Friday night.

Cities Today asks if San Jose’s new bike plan can boost bicycling rates. Only if they actually build it, as LA bike riders can attest.

The family of an fallen teenage bike rider in Elk Grove calls for changes at the dangerous intersection where he was killed; the speed limit there was recently boosted from 35 mph to 45 mph — no doubt thanks to the deadly 85th Percentile Law.

An Oakland construction site is the safest block in the city for bike riders, after workers installed a Jersey barrier on the left side of the bike lane for a change.

 

National

Actually, that new soft, squishy bike helmet looks pretty damn cool. If it actually works, that is.

Bicycling staff and readers share their spookiest bike rides ever, just in time for Halloween. For a change, there’s no Yahoo mirror site for this one, but try opening it in a private window if the site blocks you out.

A new crowdfunded grant program is designed to help BIPOC filmmakers — Black, Indigenous and People of Color — tell their stories.

C|net offers their picks for the best ebikes.

They get it. A Texas magazine says Houston’s Vision Zero program won’t succeed if it’s done one intersection at a time, and that it calls for a “reckoning that the car-heavy city does not appear ready to make.” They could write the same story about Los Angeles.

New York has completed work on a road diet and two-way cycle track on 5th Avenue through Harlem.

Another pedestrian has been injured in a crash involving New York’s Citi Bike. Except this time, a 72-year old woman was hit by a van driver servicing the bikeshare system.

Actress Famke Janssen is one of us, as she rides her bike with a massive plastic bin on the front through New York to pick up some trash bags. And looks pretty damn stylish doing it.

 

International

Cycling News recommends the best saddles for when your ride hits the rocks.

A Toronto letter writer complains that few of the city’s bike riders wear helmets, despite a mandatory helmet law. Although the headline writer deserves to get their knuckles rapped for saying “Bike lanes are only good if cyclists wear a helmet,” which is factually incorrect, and has nothing to do with what the writer wrote.

Belfast, Northern Ireland has been named the most dangerous city in the UK for people on bicycles, with a whopping 71% of people surveyed saying they’d been involved in some sort of crash in the city.

The EuroNews website wonders why Europe’s largest bike-producing country has been so slow to ride them.

This one is going on my bike bucket list. Italy is opening an 86-mile paved bike trail around the country’s largest lake. Or maybe you’d prefer a 260-mile bike path from Paris to the Normandy coast.

How Spain’s fourth largest city became a leading bike city in just 15 years by building out an entire connected bike network all at once. As LA bicyclists have learned the hard way, we’ll never get there with a disconnected, piecemeal approach. 

Now that’s scary. A Singapore driver records himself swerving at the last moment after coming up way too fast on a bike rider taking the lane.

 

Competitive Cycling

The race moto rider Julian Alaphilippe crashed into in the Tour of Flanders says he can’t help feeling guilty about the crash. Although the people who really deserve the blame are the ones who allow motorcycles near cyclists in the peloton to begin with.

Meanwhile, Alaphilippe had surgery on his hand to repair two bones that were broken in the crash.

Cycling Weekly explains what to look for in the final week of the Giro.

VeloNews looks forward to the Vuelta, with five ways this year’s race will be unlike any other. Race organizers hope to emulate the Tour de France, which went off without a single Covid-19 infection, as opposed to the Giro, which didn’t.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you take social distancing just a little too far. And maybe naming your saddle after the #1 enema maker isn’t the best idea.

Or is it #2?

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

Driver busted for Hawthorne hit-and-run, 16 LA-area bike riders shot by police, and bike-riding woman murders Metro worker

A couple quick notes before we start. 

Today is the last day to register to vote before next month’s presidential and city council elections, along with a number of other important federal, state and local offices. Not to mention a massive number of California state propositions. 

So take a few minutes to make sure your voice is heard.

Also, my apologies to everyone who tipped me to news stories over the weekend; with a few exceptions, I’ve somehow managed to lose track of who sent what. 

But please accept my thanks anyway. I always appreciate the help, even if my feeble brain fails me from time to time. 

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Hawthorne police have busted the driver who fled the scene after running a red light and slamming into a 14-year old boy as he rode his bike in a crosswalk on Rosecrans Avenue earlier this month.

Twenty-eight-year old Darlene Delgadillo confessed to driving the car after police traced it to a home in Gardena.

Meanwhile, the now-15 year old victim remains in a coma with major head trauma, as well as a broken leg, arm and feet, more than two weeks after the crash.

Yet despite the horrific harm she allegedly caused, Delgadillo will face a maximum of just four years behind bars for felony hit-and-run under California law.

Maybe someday we’ll get our elected leaders to take this crime seriously.

Because they sure as hell aren’t doing it now.

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Apparently, Dijon Kizzee was just the tip of the iceberg.

An investigative report from the LA Times reveals that 16 bike riders have been shot by police or sheriff’s deputies in LA County over the past 15 years for what started out as simple traffic violations.

Eleven of those were killed.

The Times identified 16 cases since 2005 where a stop for bike violations in Los Angeles County resulted in a police shooting, according to interviews and a review of public records from the district attorney, coroner and various court cases. Most of the stops occurred in communities made up largely of Black and Latino residents. In 11 incidents, including Kizzee’s, the bicyclists — all male and Black or Latino — were killed.

Among those 16 cases, violations ranged from riding on the sidewalk to biking without a light or on the wrong side of the road. In 11 cases, authorities said they found a firearm. In one shooting, deputies found an airsoft gun they said looked like a semiautomatic handgun.

It’s an important read, because constantly having to worry about getting stopped by the cops for biking while Black or brown is bad enough.

But something is seriously wrong when people of color also have to worry about getting the death penalty for a simple traffic violation.

Thanks to everyone who sent this one to my attention.

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Police are on the lookout for a bike-riding woman who fatally stabbed an 18-year Metro employee Friday night following a dispute at the 7th and Metro station in DTLA.

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The city council’s Transportation Committee will consider the fate of the city’s current Slow Streets at 1 pm today, with options ranging from making them more permanent, to removing them entirely.

Here’s how to join in.

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Public radio station KPFK is in deep financial danger, and could take the popular Bike Talk program down with it without your help.

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Bicycling and SRAM will examine the issues facing people who have been swept under the rug for far too long.

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This is who we share the road with.

There’s a special place in hell for a Montana man who was charged with a sex crime involving an 11-year old girl, after he was previously charged with intentionally running down a man on a bicycle, claiming it was his bike. Although you’d think if it was really his bike, he wouldn’t want to run it over with his car.

You don’t need to speak Spanish to get that maybe this driver should pay attention to the road instead of complaining about people on two wheels.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the tip.

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This will restore your faith in humanity.

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Now this is art.

The newest Banksy that popped up on a Nottingham, England street incorporates an actual beat-up bicycle chained to a pole in front of wall art of a girl using the missing bike tire as a hula hoop.

Seriously, he can paint that on my wall anytime.

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Speaking of art, the annual Bicycle Film Festival is back on this weekend, after going virtual due to the coronavirus crisis.

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

Police in Chico, California are looking for a woman who fled the scene after flooring her car and slamming into a woman on a bicycle in an apparently intentional attack, before continuing on to run over an employee at a gas station; police have recovered her car, but the driver is still on the run.

Someone ripped out the plastic bollards marking a popup bike lane in Glasgow, Scotland, and tossed them into a canal.

A New Zealand bike rider was the victim of a road raging driver who repeatedly honked and rammed the back of his bike, before finally knocking him off; the 65-year old driver faces a charge of dangerous driving causing injury.

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

A 19-year old New York man could face a murder charge after a group of bike-riding teens argued with a 79-year man before pushing him to the ground; the victim died later after being rushed to a hospital. There’s not a pit in hell deep enough.

Police in Edinburgh are looking for the masked bike-riding man who stole a woman’s watch and diamond rings as she was walking on a bike path.

A Belfast, Northern Ireland bike rider says he’s really, really sorry for stabbing two women and punching two others in a one-day assault spree, for no apparent reason; fortunately, none of the women suffered life-threatening injuries.

A 67-year old Australian man recovering from open heart surgery was left bloodied and banged up after he was hit from behind by a bike rider while walking on a pedestrian bridge. Yet another reminder to alway ride with extra caution around pedestrians. Not only are people unpredictable, but they’re the only ones out there more vulnerable than we are.

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Local

A local paper profiles 26-year old Alexandria Contreras as she runs for a seat on the Downey city council; the bike-riding candidate is a big supporter of community involvement, housing, urban safety and the environment.

Kindhearted members of the Rotary Club of Santa Clarita donated 17 bicycles to veterans in need. Although those little kids don’t look like veterans to me. But what do I know?

 

State

A 49-year old San Diego man suffered a broken leg and broken ribs when a motorcyclist slammed into a group of bike riders in the city’s Pacific Beach neighborhood; the motorcyclist walked away with road rash.

The Los Angeles Times offers more information about the 14-year old boy facing a possible hate crime charge for punching a San Diego rabbi.

More bad new from Northern California, where a 14-year old boy was killed in a crash while riding his bike in Elk Grove.

 

National

Here’s your chance to buy that really cool, but really strange hubless ebike for under two grand; the bikemaker promises it’s virtually theft proof.

Despite last spring’s lighter traffic, the rate of traffic deaths jumped nearly twenty percent, mostly because of who was driving, and how. Or rather, how fast.

A new AARP survey examines bicycling among the over 50 set, concluding that many older American’s can’t imagine not being able to ride a bike.

Cycling Savvy offers a discussion of what to look for in rear view bike mirrors. Besides cars, that is.

Apparently, soap star Susan Lucci is one of us; Katie Holmes is one of us, too.

The kindhearted members of a Utah Masonic lodge gave new bicycles to 68 elementary school students as a reward for reading.

Tragic news from Texas, where a longtime scout for the NBA’s Houston Rockets was killed after he hit an open culvert in a construction zone with his bike.

A New York bus driver who killed a bikeshare user in 2017 isn’t content with the slap on the wrist he received, going to court in an attempt to have the city’s failure to yield law invalidated — even though he only got a paltry 30 days behind bars.

The partner of a New York man has filed a lawsuit alleging that he was critically injured by falling off a defective VanMoof ebike during a test ride, because missing screws allegedly allowed the fender to come in contact with the rear wheel; the victim remains in a coma over two weeks after the crash.

Speaking of New York, the bike boom means increasing numbers of bike riders are using the city’s bridges — but avoiding the iconic, if cramped and crowded, Brooklyn Bridge.

 

International

If you’re looking for speed, roll on latex in your tires.

I want to be like her when I grow up. An 80-year old English woman celebrated her birthday with an 80-mile bike ride.

A British man set a new record for riding a bike without getting anywhere, riding a stationary bike for more than 11 days.

Seriously? Police in Dubai seized 370 bicycles in a single week because their owners violated traffic laws, in a bizarre campaign to improve traffic safety. If they were serious about improving safety, they’d seize cars from scofflaw drivers, instead.

A South African writer talks with Black and white bike riders, and concludes it’s the feeling of freedom that keeps us riding year after year.

Aussies are warned that the worldwide bike shortage means you need to do something now if you want to get a new bicycle by Christmas.

 

Competitive Cycling

An American cyclist is an unexpected hair’s breadth from the Giro podium. Twenty-two-year old Phoenix resident and former world junior time trial champ Brandon McNulty of UAE Team Emirates rode to a third place finish in the individual time trial on Saturday, leaping from 12th to 4th, with another brief time trial in the final stage.

VeloNews offers a recap of who did well, and who cracked in Saturday’s time trial.

Thirty-nine-year old Aussie Adam Hansen is throwing in the towel after 13 years and 29 grand tours, saying he’s “kind of done with it now,” and looks forward to switching to triathlons next year.

Congratulations if you had Dutchman Mathieu van der Poel in your Tour of Flanders pool.

Great French hope Julian Alaphilippe broke his hand in two places when he became just the latest cyclist to crash into a race moto in the Tour of Flanders. Once again, there is no excuse for allowing motorcycles in the peloton. Keep them in front of the cyclists or well behind, for everyone sake.

Hats off to Swiss cyclist Camille Balanche, who became the first out and proud gay woman to win the world Downhill Mountain Biking World Championship.

 

Finally…

When is a bike path not a bike path? When there’s a big frigging utility pole in the middle of it. Your next bike helmet could be soft and squishy.

And maybe people don’t really love their cars after all.

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

Mid-City bike swap meet next weekend, new Westchester bollard-protected bike lane, and Culver City Slow Streets

Clear your calendar for a Mid-City bike swap next Saturday, sponsored by the neighborhood  community council.

The Mid City West Community Council is sponsoring a Neighborhood Bike Swap on Saturday Oct. 24th from 9:00am to 1:00pm in the Sportie LA parking lot at 7765 Melrose Ave. (across from Fairfax High School).

As more people are taking to bicycles for local transportation and exercise the MCWCC is sponsoring a Bike Swap as an opportunity to get rid of an old bike or get a new (used) one. The Swap is open to anyone who wants to buy, sell or trade a bike, Kids bikes are especially in demand.

We will have a professional, certified mechanic on hand to help with minor adjustments and repairs as well as a League Certified Bicycle instructor to offer safety tips and hand out safety material.

Thanks to Taylor Nichols for the heads-up.

Photo by Valeria Boltneva from Pexels.

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As we mentioned last week, you’ll now find a new protected bike lane on Manchester Ave in Westchester.

If you can call plastic bollards protection from multi-ton vehicles, that is.

But still.

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Let’s all welcome Culver City to the Slow Streets club.

https://twitter.com/BikeCulverCity/status/1316585788935729152

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This is who we share the road with.

Petaluma police took the rare step of impounding a driver’s car for doing doughnuts at a sideshow, based strictly on video evidence. So much for the rule that officers have to see a violation themselves before taking action.

An Indiana driver is proud to share his homicidal intentions. Although it would be more helpful if it was in front, so you could see it before they run you over. Thanks to Melissa McCurley for the link.

A Melbourne, Australian man is out on bail after four police officers were killed when they were hit by a truck, after pulling him over for speeding and possible drug use; the heartless jerk recorded at least one of the officers dying, then just got back in his car and drove away.

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

A curb-hugging Kentucky bike rider pens an open letter to the angry driver who blared on the horn while nearly running him off the road.

Then there’s this.

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Local

It turns out the sister of former national crit champ Rahsaan Bahati is a top Hollywood makeup artist.

Put your damn mask on when you ride in Burbank, or face a fine up to $500 for repeated violations.

Streets for All endorses Michelle Hammond for South Pasadena City Council.

The rich get richer. Santa Monica approved a plan to expand the city’s protected bike lane network. And unlike the megalopolis nextdoor, they actually build out their bike plans. Thanks to Sindy for the tip. 

They get it. An op-ed in Santa Monica’s Argonaut says the urban future is carless, with bikes and e-scooters paving the way to navigate post-Covid cities.

 

State

You have until next Thursday to offer your input on the proposed California Transportation Plan. Hint: Tell ’em to stop wasting money on expanding freeways to create more induced demand.

Last week’s 270-mile Golden State Tour from Paso Robles to Manhattan Beach raised $140,000 to help people with paralysis.

Newport Beach quadruples the fine for violating the speed limit on the city’s boardwalk; you’ll now face a $200 fine for riding faster than 8 mph.

This should be interesting. BikeSD is hosting a ride tomorrow to explore the history of Black, indigenous and people of color in the city.

A San Luis Obispo weekly says the annual Tour of Paso bike race, which was delayed by the coronavirus crisis, will finally roll on Saturday, November 1st. Except the 1st is actually a Sunday, and it’s a charity ride, not a race. 

 

National

No surprise here, as a new insurance study finds most e-scooter injuries happen on sidewalks, not in the street.

If you have an older Peloton, your pedals could be about to let you down.

A Las Vegas paper says bicycling provides an intimate look at the region’s scenic Red Rock Canyon.

Great idea. A new Colorado program is providing free ebikes for low-income essential workers to study the effect it has on traffic.

A Colorado woman may have been the first Black woman to ride the 5,000-mile TransAmerica Trail. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you out.

Houston finally gets around to banning parking in bike lanes.

This is the cost of traffic violence. An Illinois bike rider who was run down by a semi-truck driver was a doctor at a local hospital; he died at a hospital in the chain he helped manage.

Bike thefts are booming in New York, too. And locks don’t seem to make any difference.

More proof bike lanes pay. A new study shows Baltimore’s proposed 35-mile protected bike lane network would jumpstart the local economy, resulting in $113 million in new business activity each year, while boosting property values $314 million and reducing miles driven by 8.6 million per year.

 

International

Strava has taken a step to protect user privacy by making the fly-by feature opt-in, rather than the default setting; the option allows users to see the full route of people they pass, possibly resulting in safety and security risks.

A new study from the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy rates the world’s most walkable cities. Bogota, Colombia came out on top; American cities, not so much.

London’s Independent picks eight bicycling tops to get you through the fall, while MSN ranks the best bike jackets.

Horrible story from the UK, where a woman froze to death after falling off her bike while riding through a cemetery last winter; tragically, a passerby called police after finding her, but they only spent nine minutes looking for her, without ever getting out of their car.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 74-year old Scottish man living in Colorado raised the equivalent of over $51,000 for Scotland’s National Trust by riding 3,000 miles across the US.

European bike advocacy groups protest a proposed European Union review that could put the legal status of the booming ebike market at risk.

Indian bike riders protest when a driver was fined for mounting a bike rack on the back of his car; apparently, the law bans anything extending past the rear of a vehicle.

An Aussie university lecturer says people are more likely to ride their bikes if they can carry more stuff on them.

 

Competitive Cycling

At least one team has called for cancelling this year’s Giro d’Italia, two weeks into the three-week stage race.

The latest Giro Covid-19 toll includes 17 motorcycle cops guarding a parallel ebike race running ahead of the pro race each day. So they can manage to run a second race, the same day, on the same route for ebikes, but they can’t manage to stage a parallel women’s race?

Everything is up in the air for next April’s scheduled Redlands Classic due to Covid-19.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be inflatable. When a goose is your bicycle wingman.

And apropos to the season, maybe your next ride should be to a haunted forrest.

Or even through one, if you’re brave enough.

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

5-year old fatally shot riding bike on neighbor’s lawn, reclaiming road space for bikes and dining, and Pasadena BLM ride

My God.

A North Carolina man is being held without bond on a charge of 1st degree murder, after shooting a five-year old boy point blank for the crime of riding his bike onto the man’s yard.

There are no words.

Or a pit in hell deep enough for someone who could do that.

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Today’s common theme is trading space for cars in exchange for space for bikes and diners.

That’s what’s happening on Culver Blvd in downtown Culver City, where city leaders approved plans for quick-build “tactical mobility lanes” for buses, bicyclists and emergency vehicles for the next two years, with additional space to be used for outdoor dining.

Hermosa Beach is trading the sharrows on Hermosa Ave for dedicated bike lanes and more outdoor dining space for at least the next six months.

San Luis Obispo is removing a traffic lane to stripe what may or may not be a temporary bike lane to accommodate the Covid-19 bike boom, while providing a buffer for outdoor diners.

New York goes the other way, moving a bikeshare rack to make room for diners at a 100-year old restaurant.

However, a writer for USA Today questions whether people dining al fresco at restaurants newly expanded into the streets to provide a safe space from Covid-19 are actually safe from people driving cars. Short answer, probably not in most cases.

Today’s photo shows SCAG’s revived Go Human campaign mentioned below.

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Ride to support Black Lives Matter and demand civilian police oversight in Pasadena on Saturday.

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LA’s Slow Streets movement finally made its way to Valley Village.

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The San Diego County Bicycle Coalition talks with ’84 Olympic cycling hero Nelson Vails on Instagram this Friday.

https://twitter.com/sdbikecoalition/status/1293736129066176512

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When is a Scottish pathway not a pathway?

When it’s a raging river.

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Christian Bale is one of us, as he takes his mountain bike out for a spin with his wife, in what may or may not be LA.

Britney Spears is one of us, too, going for a ride along the beach with her boyfriend.

Die Hard star Bruce Willis is one of us, going shopping by ebike in Santa Monica.

MMA fighter Ronda Rousey is one of us, though she may be rethinking that after she “ate it so hard” falling off her bike.

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

Road rage incidents directed towards bike riders are up in at least one Oregon county.

Once again, someone has sabotaged a British mountain bike trail, hiding spikes and barbed wire in a deliberate attempt to seriously injure someone.

Someone may be deliberately targeting bike riders by spreading oil across a greenway trail; a little girl was injured when her scooter skidded off the trail and into a wall.

A Land Rover driver hit a Scottish bike rider on a narrow country road, then got out of his SUV to push the victim off his bike before driving away.

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Local

No surprise here, as a new report from the Southern California Association of Governments shows a massive drop in both public and private transportation compared to last year since the coronavirus crisis kicked in, including a 39% drop in bikeshare use. Meanwhile, SCAG is revising its successful Go Human campaign.

Metro Bike is offering discounted daily, monthly and yearly passes through this month.

 

State

A San Diego County man reports he was stung over 150 times after being surrounded by a swarm of bees while running on a North County bike path. Which serves as a reminder just how lucky I was to ride into a similar swarm, and escape with major injuries — but not a single bee sting

The San Diego Bicycle Coalition is kicking off a semi-virtual scavenger hunt; no word on whether the recalcitrant North Park businesses actually opted out.

Police are looking for a cowardly Murrieta driver who fled the scene after crashing into a woman riding a bike; fortunately, she only suffered minor injuries, but her new bike was damaged. Thanks to Jeff Hammons for the heads-up.

Ventura police bust a bike thief, only to discover he has over 30 priors in the last six years.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 95-year old Santa Maria man just hit 100,000 miles on his bike. Although I’d have to back up to get back down to a 100,00 miles. But I’m not 95-years old, either.

A volunteer group is helping San Francisco restaurants fight high delivery fees by delivering food orders for them by bike, foot and car, at no charge.

Modesto police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who ran down a bike rider, leaving him or her with undisclosed injuries.

 

National

A man honored his late father’s legacy and raised over $6,000 to fight cancer by riding a century every day last month. The story is available on Yahoo if you can’t access it on Bicycling.

Meanwhile, Bicycling drops its paywall to call the new Tern GSD the best-equipped electric cargo bike. As long as you’re willing to fork out over $4,500, or more than eight grand for the version they tested.

Finishing out our Bicycling trifecta, the magazine wants to tell you how to avoid road raging drivers.

Used bike sales have helped US bike shops to survive the pandemic bike boom, which has cleaned many shops out of new bikes for the foreseeable future. However, Cycling News says there are still good deals on new bikes if you know where to look. And apparently, they do.

City Lab says life-saving technologies already exist to keep people from getting killed by drivers, yet manufacturers aren’t required to install them.

Now that’s more like it. Cars could be considered guests on Denver streets in the not-too-distant future.

A Western Colorado rafting guide rescued a family trapped by a wildfire on rental bikes.

Kindhearted Colorado cops bought a new mountain bike for a 12-year old autistic boy, after he inadvertently left his bike next to a Free Furniture sign and someone helped themselves to it.

An Iowa man was killed when a tree limb fell on him as he was riding his bike during the 100 mph derecho storm that tore through the Midwest. And no, I never heard of one before, either.

No bias here, as a Dallas newspaper says they’re glad to be rid of the “bike litter” of dockless bikeshare bikes, even though there’s now a shortage of bikes due to the bike boom.

You can have as many lights as you want on your bike in Texas.

A New York priest raised $20,000 for a food bank with a century ride through Long Island.

This week’s VeloNews podcast talks with Wall Street Journal sports columnist and dedicated bicyclist Jason Gay about the bike boom and the rescheduled Tour de France.

A Georgia man learned the hard way that if you’re going to ride with meth on your bike, put a light on it, already.

 

International

Red Bull directs your attention to the best bike accounts on YouTube.

Vancouver cops are facing criticism for crashing a patrol car into a bike rider three times before knocking him off his bike, then violently tasing him, kneeling on his neck and wresting him to the ground before taking him into custody — all because he didn’t stop for a damn traffic violation.

A Canadian community will pay $120,000 to rip out temporary bike lanes that were part of a pilot project.

Talk about damning with faint praise. Bike-riding British Prime Minister Boris Johnson insists that “not all cyclists are Lycra louts.”

You might be able to get that Brompton you’ve been dreaming of after all. The British bikemaker is starting a subscription service in the UK for the equivalent of $39 a month, with Germany and the US likely to follow. Although there are other, much cheaper alternatives.

That didn’t take long. Just days after opening, Britain’s first Dutch-style protected roundabout had to be closed after a driver plowed through it.

Speaking of Dutch style, The Netherlands offers a guide to cities looking to build a better bike culture, from discouraging cars to building an actual network of separated bikeways.

The City Fix says African nations can still become more walkable and bikeable through targeted investments, despite the coronavirus crisis.

A Cartier ad featuring two men taking a romantic bike ride apparently crossed a line with Chinese sensors; a later version described them as father and son, which somehow seems worse.

 

Competitive Cycling

No surprise here, as the 2020 world road championships were the latest Covid-19 domino to fall.

Just days after winning Milan-San Remo, former world cross champ Wout van Aert won the opening stage at the Critérium du Dauphiné.

Former Tour of California champ George Bennett rolled to victory at Italy’s prestigious, 114-year old Gran Piemonte race.

Weight weenies rejoice! Canyon tells cycling’s governing body to stuff their weight minimums, checking in with a complete new bike weighing just 13lb 11oz, over a pound lighter than UCI’s minimum weight restriction.

 

Finally…

It’s not exactly the Virgin Mary in a tortilla or anything, just Simon Cowell’s face in a rock wall. Turns out that towing your kid’s bike with a towel tied to your car may not be the best idea.

And yes, you can carry your groceries home on a bike. Even if they’re already in the fridge.

Thanks to W. Corylus for that last link.

……

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

Ryu motion to make Slow Streets permanent, Legion of LA founder Justin Williams, and popup bike lanes spreading

Once again, LA civic leaders attempt to reinvent the wheel.

That’s because a new city council motion is calling for a study of what it would take to make the city’s Slow Streets program permanent.

Except that study was already conducted ten years ago, when the city studies, and unanimously adopted, an entire network of Slow Streets, then called Bicycle Friendly Streets, as part of the 2010 bike plan.

A plan whose entire existence seems to be forgotten these days.

It’s also worth noting that the Slow Streets motion comes from CD4 councilmember David Ryu, who has suddenly become a champion of safer streets as he faces a major challenge from safe streets champion Nithya Raman for his seat.

Photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels.

………

Great story from KCBS2/KCAL9, as they interview South LA’s own Justin Williams, founder of the diversity-based League of Los Angeles cycling team.

This is how they describe the story.

He’s the 2-time defending national champ in a sport you may not be familiar with. From South Central LA, Justin Williams is the best Criterium Cyclist in the country and one of the only African-American riders. Now, he’s using his platform to grow his sport and support the current protests in a push for equality everywhere.

Note: If the video doesn’t show up on your browser, just click the link above.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.
………

Major cities around the world are taking advantage of the pandemic slowdowns to install popup and permanent bikeways and pedestrian improvements.

Except Los Angeles, of course.

Chicago proves it is possible to move forward with Vision Zero during the pandemic, including new curb-protected bike lanes and other safety improvements to tame dangerous Michigan Avenue and make it safer for cyclists and pedestrians, as well as drivers.

The New York Times takes a deep dive into how cities around the world are trying to prevent gridlock as the pandemic lockdowns end, including reclaiming the streets for people riding bikes and walking.

A pair of neighboring Ontario cities are closing curb lanes on a number of streets to install temporary bike lanes.

The BBC asks if Britain’s popup bike lanes will be enough to keep people riding

Munich, Germany is getting popup bike lanes at least through October, assuming Covid-19 is under control by then. Which seems highly unlikely.

………

Around one hundred people rolled and rode for Black Lives Matter and Breonna Taylor; over twice that many took part in a Pedal for Justice ride the next day.

A couple hundred Cleveland women came out to ride against injustice and support Black Lives Matter.

Hundreds of Boston bike riders turned out for a Ride for Black Lives on Saturday.

………

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was one of us.

Then again, so was Gandhi.

………

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

A 13-year old British teen was pulled off his bike and tackled by police in a case of mistaken identity — while he was taking part in a charity ride with his father.

A road raging British driver has been arrested after getting out of his car to confront, and kick, a small group of bike riders.

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

Pasadena police busted a bike-riding armed robber after recognizing the description given by the victim as a local transient; officers recovered some of the money, as well as the bike he was riding. Which is cop talk for saying that was probably stolen, too.

………

Local

The new North Atwater bike and pedestrian bridge doesn’t appear to be working out so well for equestrians, who have their own separated lane across the bridge.

BikinginLA sponsor Cohen Law Partners looks at what Los Angeles can learn from bike-friendly cities that are doing safety right. Hint: Just about everything.

 

State

An Anaheim man describes losing 300 pound in a single year after maxing out the scale at 599 plus, in part by switching to riding a mountain bike after Covid-19 shut the gym down.

All summer events have been cancelled in Aliso Viejo, including next weekend’s planned fireworks and bike ride.

Riverside has cancelled their fourth of July fireworks due to the coronavirus and replaced it with food and backpack drives, as well as a community bike ride, which hopefully won’t spread it, either.

Fresno police are looking for the heartless coward who ran down a bike rider on June 20th, and left the victim dying in the street.

The CHP has busted a hit-and-run driver who seriously injured two bike riders in Sacramento’s Natomas neighborhood in April.

A Lodi bike rider was critically injured in a collision with an apparent driverless car, since the local TV station didn’t bother to mention whether it had one.

 

National

Business Insider examines the rise and fall of the Jump bike, and how Uber drove what was supposed to be the future of the company into the ground in just two short years.

A writer for Vogue concludes there’s no such thing as a cool, chic or fashionable bike helmet, but some look better than others.

NPR offers a guide to exercising in a mask when you run or bike outdoors.

Flux says an ebike is a must-have for your next trip.

An Omaha, Nebraska newspaper recommends bicycle camping for a Covid-friendly excursion.

Kindhearted Texas cops got a local mission to donate a new bicycle to a 61-year old man after someone stole the bike he used to get to work at Walmart; they tried to buy one for him, but there weren’t any bikes available due to the bike boom.

The bighearted owner of a Flint, Michigan diner gave away 1,400 bicycles to local kids this year, for a total of around 6,000 bikes in the last eight years; unfortunately, this is the last year of the program.

A Harvard ornithology professor is riding his bike across the US in support of Black birders and Black Lives Matter. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the tip.

New York Streetsblog says restaurants are stealing bike lanes to expand their outdoor seating. Expanded seating is a great idea, but they should be required to install temporary protected bike lanes to go around it.

A New York father is looking forward to getting back on his bike, two years after a misdiagnosed heart condition interrupted his life.

Quartz asks if Covid-19 will finally turn New York from a city of straphangers to a city of bike riders.

Jalopnik says the NYPD is so bad at traffic enforcement, people want them out of the job. It’s not just New York; the same demands have been made in Los Angeles, too.

Chattanooga TN mountain bikemaker Ocoee is getting a name change to avoid any unintended confusion with a 1920 racial massacre by a white mob in Ocoee, Florida, which resulted in the deaths of over 30 Black residents; the company was actually named after the mountain biking trails around Tennessee’s Ocoee River.

Baltimore is telling everyone to Look Alive to improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians in a new public service campaign.

A Virginia paper spells out the advantages of ebike compared to cars, as well as standard bicycles.

A Miami cop killed one bike rider and injured another in an on-duty collision.

 

International

Bike Radar explains how to turn your bike into an ebike.

A report from Reuters says car crashes are deadlier in the US and the UK, as drivers can’t manage to keep their damn feet off the gas during the coronavirus lockdowns.

Police in Calgary, Alberta are teaming with Bike Index to help return more stolen bikes to their owners. Until Los Angeles shows a similar level of enlightenment, you can register your bike for free right here.

Newly released sales figures show the UK’s bike boom resulted in explosive growth, with April bike sales doubling over the year before; however, formerly booming ebike sales are down.

An Irish columnist says the bike boom has been one of the unforeseen consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, but questions how safe bicycling will be as regulations ease and traffic increases.

More on the five-year old English boy planning to ride 100 miles in five days to raise funds for a charity that “helps sick, disabled or disadvantaged children experience a magical day out.”

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo won reelection, establishing clear support for her plans to revamp the city’s streets to boost bicycling and walking. Meanwhile, she’s speeding up work on a green makeover of the city’s car-clogged inner beltway.

No surprise here, as Belgium’s King Philippe is one of us, along with his entire family.

Car clogged Mumbai is getting 24 bicycle councilors, one for each of the city’s 24 districts, with a goal of making the city the bicycling capital of the world by 2030.

An inexperienced Melbourne bike rider just barely lost a crosstown commuting challenge through the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

Admitted doper Nicki Sorensen says he’s embarrassed by what he did as a pro cyclist, but insists he belongs as a team sports director so he can tell younger riders what not to do.

A writer for The Guardian pens a love letter to the Tour de France, saying the race will be missed this summer. The rescheduled race is set to begin in late August, but don’t hold your breath.

Cycling Weekly looks back 65 years to Great Britain’s first all-British Tour de France team.

As cycling prepares to return, we’re reminded that it’s impossible to ride in a peloton without riding in other riders’ snot. Which is pretty much the best reason to avoid group rides right now.

 

Finally…

Presenting the clopless bike pedal. Don’t crash into women carrying water on their heads, or the could ban bikes for everyone.

And it may be easier to remove free parking from Monopoly than on city streets.

………

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

Lime supports local bike advocacy, Bicycling calls for racial diversity on bikes, and dogs (and a monkey) on bikes

E-scooter riders have come to appreciate the value of bike lanes as much as anyone.

Now Lime is trying to channel that energy into safer streets for all of us.

The company is launching their new Lime Action program in partnership with a number of advocacy groups across the US, including the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition.

“As people around the world are taking action to support racial justice, safer streets and cleaner air, we are excited to provide a platform for our millions of riders to turn their passion into action,” said Katie Stevens, Head of Global Policy at Lime. “Lime Action connects our riders with local grassroots organizations making meaningful change in their communities. We’re proud to help riders strengthen their hometowns by getting involved in efforts to create safer, calmer streets, reduce congestion and harmful emissions from car traffic, and fight systemic racism and injustice.”

Lime will provide their partner organizations with access to a number of advocacy tools, as well as directing their users to get involved with local organizations like the LACBC.

However, it light of today’s issues, safer streets in the traditional sense are just part of the fight.

The Lime Action partnerships and organizations will enable our riders to engage on issues that range from those directly impacting their rides, such as safer streets, to making transportation and our cities as a whole more equitable, and to helping make our world more sustainable:

  • Safer Streets: Lime riders are often encountering bike lanes for the first time on a scooter– and quickly discover how street space issues between cars and other modes of transportation can affect their safety. Lime Action will provide a way to translate this awareness into action to support campaigns for safer street infrastructure, including bike lanes, greenways, and cycle tracks.
  • Social Justice: Lime believes in strengthening our cities, and that goes beyond safe infrastructure. That’s why Lime Action partners with local organizations supporting re-entry for formerly incarcerated people, addressing institutional racism, providing career training and meaningful employment, and increasing opportunities for underprivileged youth.
  • Sustainability: The COVID-19 crisis has driven home the impact car travel has on our local air quality, with major improvements to clean air in cities when car use is minimized — but these reductions are already being erased as cities begin to recover. Lime riders already help to contribute to reductions in car use, with a quarter of all rides replacing a car trip, and all trips being powered by 100% renewable energy. Lime Action provides additional ways to support cleaner air by getting involved in local environmental and sustainability campaigns.

Lime also has a program that allows users to donate a small additional percentage to the LACBC and other organizations at the end of their rides.

Although it would be nice to see the company put its money where its mouth is, by committing to donate a few cents from every ride to the advocacy groups they partner with, which could provide a steady revenue stream for groups that desperately need it.

But this is a great start. Because scooter users need safe and fair streets as much as we do.

And we can definitely use their help to demand change from our elected leaders.

Meanwhile, a writer for Medium says the coronavirus may mark the turning point to profitability for scooter companies, by providing a safer alternative to transit.

………

An editorial from Bicycling calls for support for national and local bicycling organizations working for more racial diversity.

Here in Los Angeles, they mention the Bahati Foundation, Legion of Los Angeles, and Alterra Home Loans Cycling Team in Houston and LA.

All of which are worthy of your time, money and efforts.

But I’d also include local standouts like East Side Riders Bike Club, which is feeding hundreds of people who might otherwise go hungry this summer, and South LA’s Black Kids on Bikes, just to name a few.

………

He gets it.

After celebrating the newly carfree State Street pedestrian plaza, and calling for everyone to wear masks when they go there, a Santa Barbara columnist had this to say.

In all this forced solitude and isolation, people are rediscovering the simple joys of one of mankind’s greatest inventions: the bicycle. Not to state the obvious, but there are few better ways to get out and about while maintaining a safe social distance. Hazards and Bicycle Bob’s report their bike repair waiting lists longer than Trump’s Tulsa rally reservation list — only there are no K-Pop agitators and saboteurs involved. Bikes that sell for $500 flew out the door a month ago. Electric bikes are everywhere.

With so few cars on the road, the streets are safer. For a while, every day felt just like Sunday morning.

He goes on to criticize plans to ban bikes from the plaza, as we noted a few days ago.

And ends with this line.

There’s hope. Humans, after all, remain the only species that can ride a bike or snap their fingers.

So someone should tell him about this.

And this.

And this.

And yes, this.

………

You’re invited to Ride Against Racism this Sunday to support Black Lives Matter and protest police brutality.

https://twitter.com/VelTheWonder/status/1276186111186853890

………

Former basketball great Bill Walton is teaming with marathon champ Meb Keflezighi to host another BikeForHumanity virtual bike ride this July to benefit several charities, including No Kid Hungry.

………

This is what it looks like to get run down from behind when a close pass isn’t.

………

Rapper and producer DJ Mustard’s son is one of us now.

Although someone should tell him to be careful around walls.

https://twitter.com/RapCentury_/status/1275970424476663809?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1275970424476663809&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Freal923la.iheart.com%2Fcontent%2F2020-06-25-mustard-teaches-his-son-to-ride-a-bike-it-didnt-go-as-planned%2F

………

Unfortunately, there are far too many bikeways like this in the US, too.

………

Former pro Phil Gaimon is back with another video, explaining five common bike collisions and how to avoid them, no matter how man wheels you travel on.

………

Local

Somehow we missed this ranking of America’s best and worst cities for your heart. And for a change, Los Angeles scores well on a national list, checking in at a relatively healthy 20.

The LA Times recommends nine Los Angeles trails to ride your bike. Although they take a very expansive view of LA, including anything north of San Diego and Imperial Counties. 

Speaking of The LA Times, they join a long list of news outlets asking if the pandemic-fueled bike boom will continue. Short answer: At least as long as the pandemic does.

Downey’s mayor now has a 26-year old, bike-riding, YIMBY challenger for her city council seat.

This is who we share the road with. A woman walking her dog on a Palmdale bike path was killed by a driver who lost control while fleeing from sheriff’s deputies.

 

State

The California Transportation Commission, not to be confused with Caltrans, approved $100 million in Complete Streets funding, and began a discussion of equity in transportation.

San Luis Obispo bike riders rode 8.46 miles on Wednesday to honor George Floyd and show solidarity with Black Lives Matter.

 

National

FloBikes offers advice on how to avoid common bicycling injuries. The ones that happen without falling off.

WTF. Police in Maine report a pickup truck creepily followed an eleven-year old girl as she rode her bike. But never mention that the truck may have had a driver.

Six urban rides to explore Boston for the next time you find yourself in Beantown.

A Rhode Island bike shop is celebrating its 100th anniversary; the shop was founded two years after the last pandemic, and its anniversary comes just in time for the next one.

Life is cheap in upstate New York, where even killing an off-duty cop riding a bike with his son merits nothing more than a traffic ticket.

New York advocates are making progress in efforts to remove the NYPD from traffic enforcement and return responsibility for enforcement to the city’s Department of Transportation.

After years of ticketing and confiscating bicycles from immigrant delivery workers, New York City has finally gotten around to legalizing ebikes. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean they’ll be giving all those bikes back and refunding their money.

New York continues to lap Los Angeles, as it opens up normally congested streets so people can dine al fresco, unlike their Left Coast counterpart.

A Delaware letter writer says the problem isn’t people parking their bikes illegally, it’s that the city didn’t put bike racks where people need them.

Superstar Columbian singer Maluma is one of us too, going for a Miami bike ride with a friend.

 

International

Road.cc offers advice on whether you should buy a tandem, and how. Hint: Only if you like to ride with someone else.

Gear Patrol says one of the best bike saddles is from a company you’ve never heard of.

Take a virtual bike ride along a London DIY pop-up bike lane.

A London paper offers advice on basic bike maintenance for new riders.

An Indian woman who couldn’t even ride a bike four years ago is now a virtual RAAM champ. And she’s not a small woman, which should give hope to people everywhere.

 

Competitive Cycling

Pope Francis has joined people around the world in expressing his support for Alex Zanardi, as the Paralympic champ fights to recover from a horrifying handcycling crash; doctors are worried that Zanardi, who already lost his legs in a car racing crash, may lose his eyesight or suffer brain damage.

The Dutch cycling federation considers how to move forward this summer after the country lifted its ban on competitive sports.

 

Finally…

Not many people can claim they sold bikes to Bruce Springsteen and Richard Nixon. Who needs a clown car when you’ve got bikes?

And Tour de France champ Egan Bernal has clearly mastered the most important bike skills.

………

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

Bike riding celebrities flood the streets, LA Slow Streets picking up speed, and bicycling with a disability

Today’s common theme is bicycles and the celebs that love them.

LA Ram’s safety Taylor Rapp is one of us, riding 125 miles over the holiday weekend — including one 103-mile century.

Snoop Dogg’s wife is one of us, too. Which gave me the best smile I’ve had in days.

Yes, Tyler the Creator is one of us. And cooler than most of us.

Christian Bale donned a mask but skipped a helmet as he rode along with his five-year old son in Los Angeles.

The Bieb did his riding bare faced and bare footed.

Harry Styles rode through the ‘Bu with a bare head and sans face mask.

On the other hand, Joe Jonas armored up with a mask and skid lid for his ride through LA. But someone should tell him bike riding is good for his pregnant wife Sophie Turner, too.

Young and Restless star Robert Adamson was one of us, before some jerk stole his Blue Specialized Levo mountain bike in West LA.

Clearly, riding a bike is nothing new for Britain’s royal family.

Chris Dangerous, drummer for the Swedish rock band The Hives, is one of us.

And we already knew LeBron James was one of us. But evidently, so is his entire family, as they took a holiday weekend ride through empty LA streets.

Photo by Ekrulila from Pexels.

………

LAist says LA’s Slow Streets program is picking up speed as it spreads through the city, even if some people respond by attacking the signs.

Evidently, though, a mostly closed street has the power to soothe an outraged mind.

………

If you ride a bike despite a disability — or maybe because of one — NACTO wants to hear from you.

Speaking of which, this woman is living her best life on a mountain bike, despite a crippling case of juvenile arthritis.

………

The 15-year old Indian girl who carried her injured father over 700 miles back home on the back of her bicycle continued to make news over the weekend.

India’s Cycling Federation has reached out to offer her a tryout with the national cycling team, which she rejected to focus on her studies.

However, some people criticized that offer as a PR stunt that demonstrated “the worst kind of insensitivity.”

And Ivanka Trump took fire for praising the girl, instead of criticizing the transport shutdown that forced her, and countless others, to ride hundreds of miles to get back to their homes.

………

The war on cars is a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

Police in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan are investigating after a man shouted racist slurs and physically attacked a 15-year old boy of Asian descent as the boy rode his bike, accusing him of “spreading the virus.”

A British columnist seems to think the idea of stringing piano wire across a roadway at neck height to clothesline a family of bike riders is thigh-slappingly funny. He would be wrong about that.

Police in the UK are looking for a motorcyclist who kicked a man off his bicycle for no apparent reason.

Horrible news from India, where a vegetable vendor was beaten to death by a road raging driver after accidentally colliding with his car.

 

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

Laguna Canyon trails are taking a beating due to illegal mountain biking modifications.

A Florida man is ticked off — and deservedly so — at the sidewalk-riding bike rider who threw ice at the man’s deaf wife because she couldn’t hear him yelling at her to get out of the way as she walked her service dog.

Costa Rican bicyclists ignored the country’s health minister and took to the streets in groups, despite coronavirus restrictions.

And don’t do this to anyone. Especially when the driver is a columnist for the LA Times. And who the hell is Becky, anyway?

https://twitter.com/AbcarianLAT/status/1264351940143534081

………

Local

Bike paths in LA county are finally, and officially, open.

Metro responds to the coronavirus crisis with a motion to allow open streets funds to be spent on Slow Streets, temporary outdoor dining, and tactical urbanism projects. Meanwhile, the Slow Streets movement is spreading to Los Angeles County, too.

Speaking of Metro, they’re adding bus-only lanes on 5th Street, 6th Street, Grand Avenue, Olive Street and Aliso Street in DTLA. Bikes can use them too, as long as you don’t mind having a bus up your ass. Correction: In scanning this story, I missed author Joe Linton’s suggestion that bike lanes could be added or moved to the left side on one-way streets, or made protected on others, to avoid conflicts with buses.

And speaking of LA County, they’re moving forward with plans for a 2.5 mile bike path, and a 1.8 mile multi-use path, as well as two bike, walk and equestrian bridges, to connect with the San Gabriel River Trail through the cities of Southeast LA County.

Santa Clarita sheriff’s deputies will carry out another bicycle and pedestrian safety enforcement operation tomorrow, from 7 am to 11 am. So you only have to mind the letter of the law for four hours.

BikinginLA sponsor Cohen Law Partners introduces Malibu’s launch of the new Go Safely California program to prevent pedestrian deaths. Although if they really want to prevent pedestrian deaths — as well as bike riders — they should do something about that killer highway that passes for the town’s Main Street.

 

State

Officials abruptly closed a section of Fullerton’s Wilshire Bike Boulevard to bikes and cars with no warning to allow restaurants to expand out into the street; the closure is expected to last through November.

A Santa Barbara man is riding 22 centuries this year to raise $100,000 for diabetic research, in honor of his ten-year old son, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes six years ago.

Sad news from Fresno County, where a 72-year old Clovis man was killed when he allegedly swerved his bicycle in front of a motorcyclist.

Oakland’s Slow Streets program continues to evolve, adding Essential Places to enable safer access to essential neighborhood services, including grocery stores and food distribution sites.

More bad news, after a 65-year old woman was killed when she swerved right to avoid a car coming from the opposite direction, but crashed into her riding partner and fell in front of it.

A Humboldt County woman is itching to get back to her round-the-world bike tour after her trip was shut down when the Argentine border was.

 

National

Maybe Phoenix, Arizona’s 12News can explain how a bike and a car could collide with no humans involved. But if there was no one on the bike or in the car, who was seriously injured?

There’s a special place in hell for whoever slammed their car into a bike-riding Arizona family and fled the scene, leaving a three-year old boy to die in the street.

A Wisconsin man refused to leave a Dairy Queen drive through after they refused to serve him because he was on a bicycle, instead of in a car. So they called the police to have him removed, instead of just selling him a damn hamburger or dipped cone, or whatever the hell it was he wanted.

An Indiana nonprofit teamed with a martial arts academy to give 100 bicycles to families in need.

Hats off to a Texas university cycling team, which is using the interruption in the racing season to deliver groceries to seniors during the pandemic.

New York’s leading advocacy group hopes the city’s new open streets plan leads to a new approach to the city’s streets.

They get it. The Boston Globe says cities should use this time to re-imagine a post-pandemic commute.

Florida police have found the boy who was caught on camera stealing the bicycle that was an 88-year old woman’s only form of transportation; while they haven’t recovered her bike, kindhearted community members chipped in to buy her a new one.

 

International

Even the United Nations sees bicycles as the key to a post-Covid-19 green recovery.

Cycling News explains how to find the right commuter bike. Hint: The best bike for your commute is the one you have.

A Montreal man became the city’s first bicycling casualty in the past two years after falling when he swerved to avoid a pedestrian.

A Toronto writer says Carmaggedon is coming when people emerge from their Covid-19 shutdown, but bike lanes can prevent it — but only if the city “has the guts to use them.”

If the UK wants to experience a golden age of cycling, it will have to make women feel safer riding bikes.

A very forgiving British Catholic bishop says it’s his fault he fractured his skull after getting doored, because he didn’t wear a helmet. A dooring is always the driver’s fault, for not making sure the open door won’t interfere with other road users before opening the damn thing. And if he or she had, the bishop wouldn’t have needed one.

Dutch brand VanMoof is riding the crest of the bike boom wave.

A Spanish bicyclist is finally on her way home, after getting stuck in an Indian city for 78 days due to the country’s coronavirus lockdown; she had ridden through 18 Asian and European countries before her journey came to a sudden end.

A late blooming Philippine bike rider says it’s not enough to just throw some paint down and call it a bike lane.

Authorities found the body of an Australian man in the bushland over a month after he disappeared while riding his bike, terming his death “suspicious” while they search for his missing bicycle.

A Sydney, Australia man explains how he went from suffering a heart attack to becoming a daily bike commuter.

Police stats show cops in Australia’s New South Wales are using the state’s draconian helmet law as a cudgel to target poor and vulnerable people, while avoiding enforcement of the law in wealthier — aka whiter — neighborhoods.

It’s true. Aussie traffic counts show people in the country are riding bikes more than ever before.

 

Competitive Cycling

This is what it feels like to fly off the road — and off the mountain — in the middle of a Giro descent.

We have our third new Everesting record in the past two weeks. But this time it’s on the women’s side, as American cyclist Katie Hall broke the existing women’s record by a massive 2.5 hours.

Despite his fall from grace, Lance is still a millionaire fifty times over, thanks to a well-timed hundred grand investment in Uber. Meanwhile, a sports site catches up with fellow doper, ex-Tour de France winner, CBD purveyor and all-around Lance nemesis Floyd Landis.

And no, you will probably never look that good on a bike. But it doesn’t hurt to try.

 

Finally…

Who needs a dating app when you can fall in love over mountain bikes? If you’re going to sell drugs from your bike, maybe cover up those tatts so you aren’t so easy to identify.

And Alex Trebek gets it.

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

LA beach bike path opens — or not, keep Rose Bowl Loop carfree, and LADOT blows it on 7th Street bike lanes

Before we start, let me offer a special thank you to Pasadena-based bike lawyer Thomas Forsyth for renewing his sponsorship for another year.

It’s pretty remarkable that all three of this site’s primary sponsors stepped up and renewed their ads, despite the economic disaster wrought by the coronavirus pandemic. 

So if you get the chance, take a moment to thank those guys over there on the right. Because this site wouldn’t be possible without them. 

And if you ever need a good lawyer, you know what to do.

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LA County Supervisor Janice Hahn put out the welcome mat for bicyclists on the county’s beachfront Marvin Braude bike path.

https://twitter.com/SupJaniceHahn/status/1263499830078259200?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1263499830078259200&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.dailybreeze.com%2Fla-county-supervisor-says-beach-bike-paths-are-open-but-are-they

But the Daily Breeze says not so fast.

The paper notes that final approval has to come from the Los Angeles County of Department of Public Health, which hasn’t happened yet.

And they can’t do anything until the county’s Safer at Home order is amended.

So maybe it will be open when you ride to the beach this weekend. Or maybe not.

But considering how crowded it’s likely to be, maybe you’re better off waiting for next week, anyway.

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Add your voice to a call to keep the popular Rose Bowl Loop carfree.

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Patrick Pascal forward another view of the new 7th Street protected bike lane in Downtown Los Angeles.

Or as drivers call it, the only free parking zone in DTLA.

Photo by Patrick Pascal

Pascal also notes that there was some sort of obstruction on every block between Main and Figueroa when he rode it this week.

Which means LADOT needs to do better.

Because a protected bike lane does no damn good if we can’t ride it because it’s not protected enough.

………

Today’s common theme is Slow Streets, pop-up bike lanes, and the need to provide alternatives to driving as the world reawakens from its pandemic slumber.

NACTO has released a guide to creating streets for pandemic response and recovery.

The Smithsonian considers how cities intend to use extended bike lanes and wider sidewalks to keep traffic out when lockdowns lift. Although someone should tell them that bike riders and pedestrians are traffic, too. Just not the stinky, dangerous and road clogging kind.

A physics website says Covid-19 inspired pop-up bike lanes could result in permanent changes to our cities. And need to.

The Guardian says those pop-up bike lanes and carfree streets provide much-needed relief from auto exhaust, which much be maintained when city’s reopen.

San Francisco expands its Slow Streets program, temporarily closing 13 additional corridors to allow for more social distancing outside the home for bike riders and pedestrians. The city is also installing a quick-build protected bike lane on 7th Street. Something tells me they won’t allow parking in that one, unlike a certain megalopolis to the south.

Even the conservative Washington Times asks if cities will be ready for the boom in bike use, as people go out of their way to avoid transit when they go back to work. And tosses in a rebound in micromobility, for good measure.

A London advocacy group warns cars will be coming back any day, and the city will be in real trouble if emergency bike lanes aren’t built soon.

Bikes are really booming in France, with bike use up nearly 50% as the country reopens from its coronavirus lockdown. It’s amazing just how much bike use has jumped in cities and countries around the world in the last two months. And just how little we’re doing about it here in Los Angeles.

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The war on cars is a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

No bias here. A Rhode Island letter writer says resistance to aggressive, narcissistic Lycra-clad bicyclists is futile. How the hell can you look at a bike rider speeding past and determine if he or she is a narcissist? Does she think we spend the whole time admiring ourselves in the reflections on the shiny jerseys of the riders in front of us?

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

Santa Barbara residents are riled by a ruckus-raising, sidewalk-riding masked bike-rider with a wrench.

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Local

Authorities identify the victim who was stabbed to death by a man on a bike on the Venice boardwalk last weekend.

CiclaValley takes a look at the new and improved Laurel Canyon Bike Lane.

 

State

This is who we share the roads with. Heartbreaking and infuriating story from San Jose, where a 26-year old man faces multiple counts of murder for the drunken crash that killed four passengers in his car, and injured another; Rabbi Kumar Khanna was subject to a murder charge after receiving a Watson warning for a previous DUI. Just one more example of officials keeping a dangerous driver on the streets until it’s too late. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

 

National

The National Safety Council confirms what we already knew — pandemic-emptied streets are enticing drivers to floor it, resulting in greater risk and lethality on our streets.

Keep your bike locked away with your toilet paper. CBS News says we’re in a vicious cycle, as soaring bike sales result in shortages, which is causing panic buying.

Vice says the fight for greener neighborhoods is a matter of life and death, particularly in denser, less privileged areas.

ZZ Top’s bearded Billy Gibbons is one of us, a sharp dressed man in cheap sunglasses with his tush on a bike seat and legs working the pedals, enjoying a Viva Las Vegas ride with a friend.

Seattle bike brand Rad Power is introducing a new and improved version of their e-cargo bike, with a relatively affordable $1,599 price tag.

Idaho prosecutors learned the hard way that if you’re going to ticket a bike rider for violating the state’s Idaho Stop Law after she was struck by a driver, it helps to charge her under the right statute. And props to the victim for appealing a measly $90 fine.

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the annual Ride of Silence was still held in some places, like this one in Abilene, Texas.

After they had to cut a little girl’s bicycle to get her foot loose, kindhearted Arkansas firefighters teamed with the local police to buy her a new one.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever rode a bikeshare bike up to a mentally disturbed New York woman, and chatted her up before viciously attacking and raping her. Seriously, there’s not a pit deep enough. Or a sentence long enough.

Spike Lee is one of us, breaking his New York self-isolation on a bicycle. And yes, I’m impressed.

If you or I plan a century ride, no one notices. When new Carolina Panther’s QB Teddy Bridgewater plans one, it makes Sports Illustrated.

New Orleans kicks off an expansion of the city’s bike lanes, with plans to stripe another 75 miles over the next two years. Which is only about 75 miles more than Los Angeles has committed to.

A short bike ride through town provides a ticket out of isolation for a Natchez, Mississippi man.

A kid in Florida was caught on camera stealing a bicycle from an 88-year old man, who used it as his only form of transportation to pick up groceries and medication. Let’s hope the little jerk’s parents see this, and give him a time out until he’s 35.

 

International

Road.cc has tips for weight weenies on how to strip a few more ounces off your bike. And insider advice you should know before buying a bike light.

Cycling Tips reviews a bike bell battle royale.

Toronto belatedly builds a bike lane barrier to prevent drivers from using it as free parking.

London bike couriers are playing a vital roll in the battle against Covid-19, rushing coronavirus samples to labs throughout the city.

A UK city councillor tells bike riders and pedestrians to be nicer to each other, already.

Bike riders in Kyrgyzstan are riding to the rescue, delivering insulin to homebound diabetics. Thanks again to Robert Leone.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Guardian says Lance shows plenty of rage but little regret in ESPN’s eponymous new documentary, while Outside says he gets brutally honest in the film. And he still hasn’t forgiven Floyd, apparently.

VeloNews talks with past and present record holders Phil Gaimon and Keegan Swenson about how to Everest like a pro.

Speaking of which,

But can you really Everest without leaving your home?

 

Finally…

Peloton’s new stationary bike will only cost a leg. Forget drive-ins, the future of live music is bike-in shows.

And you’ve only got a few more hours to vote for America’s only remaining Tour de France winner for the Greatest of All Time in Nevada sports.

I mean, seriously, how many TdF’s did this Snyder guy ever win?

………

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

LA slowly gets Slow Streets, 7th Street protected bike lanes looking good, and Westwood homeowners up to old tricks

About damn time.

Los Angeles finally got around to implementing Slow Streets this weekend to allow residents to get outside while maintaining social distancing.

Only two months after the coronavirus lockdown began in mid-March. And long after other cities in the US and around the world demonstrated it could be done safely, to the benefit of local residents.

But naturally, LA has to do it the hard way.

Instead of just installing them on appropriate streets throughout the city — or even following the already-approved network of Bicycle Friendly Streets in the city’s mobility plan — someone has to apply for them.

Correction, some sort of group or organization has to apply, not an individual.

And only one application will be accepted per neighborhood council district.

So, maybe you’ll get one somewhere near you. But probably not.

Never mind that the city has already threatened to shut down any Slow Street that turns out to be too popular.

Meanwhile, Sacramento is following LA’s lead — and bad timing — by asking residents to nominate streets for their Slow Streets program. Thanks to Martin Rose for the link.

………

Evidently, LADOT can move fast when they put their minds to it, after all.

Patrick Pascal says this is what it looked like just two days earlier.

7th Street bike protected bike lane; photo by Patrick Pascal.

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Westwood homeowners and the Westwood Neighborhood council are up to their old tricks, incorrectly claiming that every organization in the Westwood area opposes bike lanes on Westwood Blvd in Westwood Village.

And drastically exaggerate both what is planned, and the effect it would have.

Which is a polite way of not calling them liars.

Except the North Westwood Neighborhood Council, which represents the area north of Wilshire Blvd, where the proposed bike lanes would be located, are actually in favor of it.

https://twitter.com/graysonapeters/status/1261016593347211264

But that first link implies, this is nothing new.

The area’s wealthy homeowners have claimed ownership of the Village for decades, going so far as to have dancing — yes, dancing — banned.

Maybe they staged the Footloose remake in the wrong town.

It’s this kind of ham-fisted misrepresentation of the area that caused the NWNC to break off from the Westwood NC a few years ago, and finally give Westwood Village its own representation.

Before the homeowners succeed in completely killing it.

Because they will, if they have their way.

………

No, seriously.

If they’re stupid enough to do the crime, they’re probably stupid enough to get caught.

Richard Rosenthal forwards news of a group of four Long Beach teens who mugged a man riding his bike on the San Gabriel River Trail, stealing his phone and wallet after hitting and kicking him, then tossed his bike onto the rocks along the river.

And posted a video online boasting about the crime.

Long Beach police think there were other people who witnessed the crime, or knew about the video, and kept silent.

Anyone with information is urged to call LBPD Robbery Detective Fermin Gonzalez at 562/570-7068.

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Some things are just too cute not to include here.

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Here’s a suggestion for the next time you want to hit a little gravel.

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Evidently, Mr. Las Vegas is one of us, too.

Thanks to Tim Rutt for the heads-up.

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

Police are looking for a murder suspect who fled the scene on a bicycle, after stabbing a man to death on LA’s Venice boardwalk.

Police in Seattle are looking for a bike-riding thief wanted for a string of armed robberies. Odd that no one tries to steal his bike when he leaves it unlocked like that when he goes in to rob a store.

British police are looking for a pair of bicyclists who collided with a six-year old scooter-riding boy, leaving him with a broken leg.

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Local

Even though collisions are down 38% in Los Angeles since the Covid-19 lockdown began, traffic fatalities are up 15% — with pedestrian deaths jumping 33% — thanks to speeding drivers.

Los Angeles came as close as it probably ever will to being a traffic-free city on the last Monday in March.

KPCC and LAist producer Leo Duran tries to uncover why no bicycles are allowed on the beach bike path in LA County, and doesn’t get anywhere. But he does have the good taste to quote yours truly.

Santa Monica is extending the city’s shared mobility pilot program for another year.

Pixies guitarist Joey Santiago is one of us, spending his lockdown time with his kids and girlfriend when he’s not riding his bike through the streets of Los Angeles. Maybe he’ll run into Tobey Maguire riding his bike while he’s out there.

 

State

Seal Beach is planning to reopen a section of the San Gabriel River Bike Trail through the Orange County city in the coming days, though the exact timing isn’t clear.

Encinitas considers lowering speed limits on the coast highway to improve safety for bike riders, while trying to accommodate all kinds of bicyclists.

Sad news, as longtime Riverside civic advocate and volunteer high school mountain bike coach Bob Stockton was killed when he was struck by a van driver while jogging last week. Thanks to David Huntsman for the heads-up.

An Isla Vista bike rider was seriously injured when he allegedly rode out of a driveway in front of an oncoming car.

Lompoc wants your input on the city’s proposed Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan.

Bad news from Bakersfield, where a bike rider suffered major injuries when he or she was run down by the driver of a gardening truck, who fled the scene.

The Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition is looking for volunteers to help distribute seedlings throughout the area. Thanks to Robert Leone for the tip.

Berkeley is going beyond Slow Streets by closing major streets entirely to provide physically distant restaurant seating.

As LA’s Slow Streets gets off to a slow start, San Francisco is preparing to expand its program to 13 new corridors.

 

National

Phillip Young forwards news of the most dangerous cities in the US for bike riders. For once, we can be glad Los Angeles didn’t make the list; San Bernardino, not so much.

The Atlantic warns about the dangers of a backlash against walkable, bikeable cities in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.

NPR catches up to the coronavirus bike boom, noting bike sales are up 50% over last year; Canada is running out of bicycles, too.

A new study shows that bike commuting really does increase after bikeshare rolls into town.

The Bike League wants your help to design and build a better bike lane barrier.

Bicycling rates the ten best women’s mountain bikes.

Portland cops bust a homeless camp bike chop shop, recovering at least 15 hot bikes, including a Cannondale worth four grand as well as various bike parts and power tools.

Still no trace of the Colorado woman who reportedly disappeared on a Mother’s Day bike ride; her family is offering a $200,000 reward for her return, with no questions asked. Police say they haven’t ruled out foul play.

Well if that’s all it takes. A pair of Texas priests rode through the Rio Grande Valley to pray for rain — and the next day it poured. Then again, I used to have a gift for bringing rain when I rode, too, despite praying it would hold off until I got home.

No bias here. A New York TV station questions whether all those new temporary bike lanes are really needed, because bikeshare use is down during the coronavirus pandemic. Never mind that many people are far more comfortable riding their own bikes, rather than a shared bike, right now.

No surprise here, as New York’s popular Five Boro Bike Tour was cancelled for this year, just three days before it was scheduled to be run.

The Cherokee Nation has cancelled the annual Remember the Removal Bike Ride tracing the route of the infamous Trail of Tears through Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas and Oklahoma; the nine young riders chosen for this year’s tour will have a chance to ride next year, instead.

A group of Savannah, Georgia bike riders are creating their own self-guided tour of the city’s historic neighborhoods, writing their guide in sidewalk chalk.

 

International

The Guardian’s Peter Walker says ebikes could be the answer to our post-lockdown commuter problems, while the Christian Science Monitor says the world’s two-wheeled future is so bright it has to wear…well, you get it.

T3 argues that you can get a really good road bike for less than the equivalent of $1,200.

Bike Radar offers a guide to developing an effective cadence.

Does it really count as the World Naked Bike Ride if you’re just riding naked on your indoor trainer?

A Vancouver Island man was lucky to get his bike back after it was recovered in a police raid, three years after he reported it stolen. Which is exactly why you need to register your bike now, and report it to the police if it ever gets stolen.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan is one of us, taking to his bike with an apparent tennis racket slung across his back.

It ain’t necessarily so. A London legend tells of a woods haunted by the ghost of a boy murdered by an axeman while walking or riding his bicycle in the early 1700s. Problem is, that’s about a hundred years before the first forerunner of the bicycle was invented.

A writer in London explains how she overcame her fear and started riding her bike.

Sad news from the UK, as Phil May, lead singer for the British ’60s R&B/psychedelic rock band Pretty Things, died following surgery for a broken hip suffered when he fell off his bike.

Up to five million Brits are expected to bike to work following the coronavirus crisis, a significant chunk of the country’s 32 million residents.

Chef Gordon Ramsey continues to demonstrate how to win friends and influence people, telling his Welsh neighbors not to get their knickers in a twist as he settles for riding indoors this time, after flaunting his lockdown-breaking bike rides the last few weeks.

Chris Boardman says the UK has a chance to change the country’s transportation forever.

Red Bull recommends nine French climbs that will chew you up and spit you out, while giving you a sense of accomplishment — if you actually make the summit.

A woman from the UK says she learned to live in the moment while riding along the Rhine and Danube rivers to Istanbul, “turning the pedals and waiting for the world to unfold.”

Sad news from India, where an American expat working in Hyderabad, India was killed in a mountain biking fall.

A migrant worker in India stole a bicycle to make the 150-mile journey home. But he left a very nice note saying he had to take it to get back to his special needs son.

An Afghan man is riding his bike door-to-door through Nangarhar province to spread awareness of Covid-19.

We take a lot of things for granted in this country — like an ambulance will be there when we need it. Residents of a remote Ugandan village were excited to receive a modified bicycle ambulance to transport expectant mothers and sick patients to medical care when an ambulance isn’t available.

South African bicyclists are urged to wear masks when they ride. Los Angeles bike riders are required to wear masks under the latest rules, while riders in LA County are only required to wear masks when others are around.

A reporter is riding his bike across Japan to see firsthand the effects of Covid-19 in the island nation.

 

Competitive Cycling

That didn’t take long. Just four days after LA’s Phil Gaimon shattered the world record for Everesting, US cross-country mountain bike champion Keegan Swenson shaved 12 minutes off Gaimon’s record.

On the other hand, Everesting on a fixie, not so much.

 

Finally…

Seriously, don’t use WD40 to lube your chain. If your city won’t paint bike lanes, just do it yourself. Your next bike lock could double as a light — or part of your frame.

And your new cargo bike is waiting. If you can outbid Zach.

………

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

Slow Streets finally coming to Los Angeles, face masks now required in LA, and YouTubers injured in hit-and-run

Finally.

Los Angeles County has given a long-overdue blessing to the concept of Slow Streets.

And LA Mayor Eric Garcetti has suggested the city may give them a try.

According to a story from Time Out,

On Wednesday, the county announced that as part of an update to its “safer at home” order, it would allow cities to close off streets to car traffic and temporarily turn them into pedestrian-only areas.

“Local public entities may, if they want to, temporarily close certain streets or areas to automobile traffic and this would allow for increased space for persons to engage in recreational activity that’s permitted by the health officer orders,” said Department of Public Health director Dr. Barbara Ferrer in her daily briefing.

Slow Streets, a term that was virtually unheard of before the concept spread rapidly across a world afflicted by Covid-19 and the resulting lockdowns, are fully or partially closed to motor vehicles to allow people to get outside for a little fresh air and exercise, while providing enough space to allow for social distancing.

Without having to worry about getting run down by a speeding, distracted driver. Or having to leave their own neighborhood.

But as usual, LA appears to be wrapping the concept in needless red tape.

Instead of simply choosing several streets to close down across the city, as countless other cities have done, Los Angeles will make residents apply if they want one near them.

https://twitter.com/laura_nelson/status/1260735078168064000

Which may or may not be approved, depending on whatever criteria will be used to vet the request.

Most likely, though, it will depend on whether the local councilmember wants them, in a city where they are virtual kings and queens in their own districts, with the power to bless or kill any street proposal.

So we may be able to get out for a little air soon. But I wouldn’t hold your breath just yet.

As usual, though, this comes because bike and pedestrian advocates fought for it.

………

You’re now going to have to wear a face mask anytime you go outside in the City of Angels.

Although whether that would apply if you’re riding your bike, and not around other people, remains to be explained.

But just like deciding to ride without a helmet, you can expect to be harassed and publicly shamed by self-appointed safety vigilantes if you’re not wearing one.

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YouTube stars and influencers Marcus and Kristin Johns were both injured by a hit-and-run driver, who they say swerved directly at them in an intentional attempt to run them down as they were riding their bikes.

The driver was apparently fleeing from police following a burglary.

Neither one suffered major injuries, though they were both hospitalized. Unfortunately, however, they don’t give any date or location for the crash.

But it could explain why this story about Monday’s Toluca hit-and-run has unexpectedly blown up, with over 10,000 page views in the last two days.

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ESPN has released the trailer for their upcoming documentary about Lance Armstrong, titled simply Lance.

Which reminds me of this old classic.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

A pair of “respected” retired woman are suspected of sabotaging a British bike trail by building traps using rocks and branches to stop unsuspecting bike riders.

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Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says there are new bike lanes on two sections of York Blvd in NELA, with a two-block gap on a narrow section in between.

Streetsblog looks at the opening of the Rose Bowl loop to people, not cars. Meanwhile, a Pasadena writer suggests repurposing Old Town’s Colorado Blvd for outdoor dining.

Watchmen actress Malin Akerman celebrated her birthday with an unmasked ride with friends and family through the streets of Venice.

Final Destination star Ali Larter is one of us, riding through Pacific Palisades with her five-year old daughter.

Shia LaBeouf is one of us, too, riding with his with wife in Pasadena, with the family dog in tow.

 

State

San Diego is trying to pump new life into May’s moribund Bike Month by encouraging people to try bike commuting. There may never be a better time to give it a shot, with motor vehicle use at a historic low.

He gets it. Writing for a Yucaipa paper, a veteran bike cop says the far to the right law is widely misunderstood, and you’re not expected to be a gutter bunny. Although he may not have used that exact term. But still.

An allegedly intoxicated Fresno teenager hit the trifecta, crashing into a parked car, a bike rider and an apartment complex while fleeing from police; no word on the rider’s condition.

Vallejo’s annual tongue-in-cheek Obtanium Cup bike festival has been cancelled.

 

National

Time to start hoarding bicycles. The Guardian says bike usage is soaring across the US, while Bike says we’re running out of bikes, and it’s not just due to the coronavirus.

Lifehacker offers tips on learning to ride a bicycle, even if you’re an adult. Although once you actually get on a bike, you won’t feel like one.

The Verge says something better may emerge from the ashes of the scooter-sharing industry, which has ground to a halt over coronavirus fears.

A pair of Seattle bike cops are suing the city, alleging they were injured due to poorly maintained bicycles.

Los Angeles isn’t the only city enjoying cleaner air during the coronavirus lockdown. Denver is getting long-overdue relief from the city’s notorious brown cloud.

Evidently, that flawed study that incorrectly asserted that bike helmets reduce head injuries up to 85% will never die, rearing its head once again in an editorial from a Kansas paper. More accurate studies suggest helmets can reduce the risk of head injury 48%, and serious head injury 60%.

An Illinois letter writer complains that bike riders are discriminated against at drive-up windows. Just another example of windshield bias and the hegemony of motor vehicles.

Boston is considering four options to allow residents to get outside while maintaining social distancing, including Slow Streets and pop-up bike lanes.

New York is opening another 12 miles of Slow Streets now to allow for social distancing outside, along with another nine miles of protected bike lanes later this month.

An Alabama man was killed by his neighbor in a shooting that began with a dispute over the victim’s son, who was riding his bike down the street with a slingshot.

That’s more like it. A Florida city is building a new visitor’s center to attract people on bicycles.

 

International

The World Economic Forum suggests the Covid-19 pandemic could usher in a golden age of bicycling.

Cycling News looks at how ebikes are powering a worldwide revolution in post-lockdown transportation.

Road.cc lists their picks for the best road bikes priced from roughly $1,222 to $1,833. Which makes a lot more sense when you consider that translates to a nice, round £1,000 to £1,500 in the UK.

London’s historic Square Mile financial district will block some streets to motor vehicles as the city comes back to life, encouraging people to walk and ride bikes instead of driving.

The Standard says this is a chance for a more bike-friendly London.

A suspected British bike thief experiences instant karma, falling off the bike into a patch of nettles and breaking his ankle as he tried to make his escape.

The Sea Otter Classic is pulling the plug on the inaugural Australian edition of the annual Monterey bike fest.

 

Competitive Cycling

Covid-19 claims another major event with the cancellation of Colorado’s iconic Leadville Trail 100 mountain bike race.

If Oregon gives the okay to resume bike racing, it will be up to promoters to prove the race is safe from the coronavirus.

Cycling News looks back at the first American to ride in the Giro d’Italia, nearly 50 years before the first American team made its debut.

 

Finally…

When protesters try to disrupt your bike shop opening, just give them a deal. Your next ebike could be a balloon that fits in a backpack. No, really.

And this is what happens when someone who’s apparently never ridden a bike tries to design facilities for them.

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

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