Tag Archive for Streets For All

Protest Malibu’s PCH door zone plan, Caltrans District 7 active transportation plan, and Sunset4All halfway to goal

After we sounded the alarm yesterday, Streets For All is calling on everyone to email the Malibu Planning Commission.

The street safety PAC is urging bike riders to protest plans to widen a two-mile section of PCH to “improve bicycle safety” by installing even more roadside parking, forcing bike riders into the door zone.

And yes, that means you.

Ask the City of Malibu to add safe, protected bike lanes to PCH

Thanks to our friends at Biking In LA for pointing out that the City of Malibu is considering an item on its next planning commission agenda (item 5B) to improve safety for people on bikes on PCH.

However, their proposal is really a way to add even more parking for cars on PCH, while putting people in bikes in the “door zone.” We need them to do better, and eventually would love a protected bike lane for the entire stretch of PCH.

As usual, they include a link, complete with email addresses and a sample email, to contact the Malibu Planning Commission by this Sunday and voice your concerns over this dangerous “bike safety” plan.

Photo by DJ_Moertel from Pixabay.

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Cuong Trinh, the Active Transportation and Complete Streets/ Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator for Caltrans District 7, wants your input on the state DOT’s active transportation plan for the Los Angeles region.

Hello Community Stakeholder,

I wanted to let you know that we are undertaking the development of the Caltrans District 7 Active Transportation Plan.

Our plan serves as a needs assessment, by utilizing our government agency partners, non-government stakeholders and members of the public to identify bicycle and pedestrian needs along the State Highway System. In order to undertake the completion of this plan, we have a Consultant that is analyzing existing planning documents from cities and counties, as well as user and partner-submitted needs (using a location-based-needs survey) that your organization and its stakeholders can participate in.

The State Highway System includes all state-owned freeways, select regional highways and some local streets. All of these freeways, highways or local streets are signed by a red and blue Interstate freeway shield (Interstate 5) or a green California state highway shield (State Route 2).

Next Thursday, July 22nd, we invite you to attend one of our informational meetings intended for our non-governmental stakeholders where we will provide an introduction to the Caltrans Active Transportation Plans and the effort to complete the plan in Caltrans District 7, serving Los Angeles and Ventura counties. You may be aware that other Caltrans districts are also in the process of completing their district-specific plans as Caltrans has 12 districts that serve 58 counties statewide.

Your organization and its stakeholders may be aware of bicycle and pedestrian needs on our State Highways. These needs can range from missing or broken sidewalks to gaps in bicycle lanes and paths along or across State Highway System facilities. We see that your input is critical in providing locations and context for those needs. With your help, we can prioritize those needs in our future highway projects. However, without sufficient input from our stakeholders, we would be short of sufficient information that our project engineers could use to address non-motorized user needs.

You can learn more about the CAT Plans, as well as take a survey (where users are invited to place pins on a map) at http://www.catplan.org and click District 7.

We have scheduled two informational meetings in the next week that you can attend at your convenience, as the same materials will be presented at either meeting. Therefore, you can attend one meeting that best fits your schedule.

Feel free to attend one of these (virtual) meetings at your convenience:

Also feel free to forward this to anyone from other organizations or people who may find the Caltrans Active Transportation Plans effort of interest or relevance, as we may have missed many organizations and local interests.

Should you have any questions regarding the CAT Plans, don’t hesitate to contact the project lead for the Caltrans District 7 Active Transportation Plan, at cuong.trinh@dot.ca.gov.

Hope you stay healthy and safe.

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Sunset4All is now over halfway to their goal of raising $25,000 to fund a public/private partnership to build protected bike lanes on eastern sections of Sunset and Santa Monica Blvds.

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If you’ve got a few extra bucks, take a moment to help support the LA-area’s most important voice for transportation news.

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Now tell me again why businesses need to keep every car parking spot to survive.

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GCN explains how to successfully deploy chamois cream to keep your bike from being a pain in the ass.

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

Horrifying video from Idaho, where a 26-year old man faces charges for responding to a minor dispute between kids at a skate park by chasing two young boys in his pickup, and running over their bicycles after they barely jump out of the way. Never mind what kind of a sick schmuck would actually do something like that.

No bias here. A Missouri newspaper says a young boy was injured when he hit a car with his bicycle. Unfortunately, there’s no way to tell what actually happened from the brief three-sentence article. But that probably wasn’t it.

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

There’s a special place in hell for a “‘bitter’ and jealous man” who rode his bike up to his ex-girlfriend as she got a London bus and threw a caustic chemical in her face, leaving her with severe acid burns; the attack followed a months-long harassment campaign.

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Local

LAist looks at the continuing efforts by Metro Bike workers to form a union to protect their interests with the company who manages it for Metro. As the son of a union man, you probably don’t have to guess which side I fall on.

Surprisingly, Los Angeles didn’t make the list of the 20 US cities with the worst urban heat islands. Despite what it feels like here in Hollywood on hot days.

 

State

The 4th of July continues to take a toll on bike riders, after a 15-year old Fremont boy died of injuries he suffered in a collision while riding his bike that night.

Despite a number of street safety projects across the city, San Francisco is failing to make progress on Vision Zero, with roughly the same number of fatalities last year as in 2014, when the program to eliminate traffic deaths was adopted. On the other hand, at least they’re undertaking major Vision Zero projects, unlike a certain megalopolis to the south we could mention, which continues to just nibble around the edges.

A San Francisco website says yes, the city needs cheaper bikeshare. But it also needs to do something about those damn potholes and fractured streets.

Redding hopes the public turns out for a mile-long bike parade to celebrate the opening of a new two-way cycle track.

 

National

New Statesman considers how the “populous and multifarious history of women’s cycling” set women free.

A new study shows police traffic stops don’t prevent crashes, while unfairly targeting people of color.

Writing for Road Bike Action, a doctor explains how to treat and survive road rash. Don’t get me started. I once wiped out during a high-speed turn and ended up with road rash from my ankle to my chin. Good times.

Tucson, Arizona man faces a second-degree murder charge for the alleged drunken hit-and-run that killed a 56-year old man riding his bike.

After Tulsa, Oklahoma responded to complaints by ripping out a bike lane that had been installed without consulting the mostly Black residents of North Tulsa, a lone Black man walked the route carrying his bicycle in a powerful solo protest, saying that as a bike rider, he feels like a minority within a minority.

A Houston man got life without parole for fatally shooting a homeless man, after previously shooting the same man in the leg a few months earlier; he also faces charges for the fatal shooting of a woman riding a bicycle five years earlier.

A new book from Massachusetts-based author Peter Zheutlin spins a fictionalized tale about his real life great-great aunt Annie Cohen Kopchovsky, aka Annie Londonderry, famed for being the first woman to ride a bicycle around the world over a 125 years ago.

This is who we share the road with. Five children were injured when an allegedly stoned driver lost control of her car and slammed into a Rochester, New York home, coming to a stop in the living room where they were gathered.

Bizarre story from Philadelphia, where a driver was physically attacked by a bystander while trying to get away after running over a 12-year old boy with his pickup, with the boy’s bike still trapped underneath.

 

International

Fast Company says simply designing cities better — whether through superblocks, a Paris-inspired 15-minute city or going carfree — could cut deaths by all causes up to 20%.

The European Union commits to phasing out new gas and diesel-powered cars by 2035.

The booming gravel bike market is keeping titanium-frame bikemakers busy.

Outside continues to consolidate its growing monopoly on bike news with the purchase of Canada-based Pinkbike and CyclingTips, as well as the TrailForks mountain bike mapping app; the company already owns VeloNews, Peloton, Beta and Triathlete.

A British website explains how to keep your bike from being stolen, and what to do if it is anyway.

A Dutch village near Utrecht unveiled the world’s longest solar power-generating bike path, stretching more than the length of three and a half football fields, as part of a drive to be carbon neutral by 2040.

Speaking of Utrecht, the city’s latest new district will go even further in prioritizing bicyclists and pedestrians by banning cars entirely. Don’t mind me, I’ll just be packing my bags and dusting off my passport.

A Singapore woman begs bike riders to announce their presence to runners and pedestrians before passing by ringing a bell or saying “on your right” (or left, here), or even just “excuse me.”

 

Competitive Cycling

Defending champ Tadej Pogačar tightened his grip on the yellow jersey, as rivals tried and failed to wrest it from him on Wednesday’s penultimate mountain stage.

The New York Times and National Public Radio both pick up the story of Austrian cyclist Lachlan Morton’s remarkable solo ride along the entire Tour de France route, and every mile in between, raising over half a million for World Bicycle Relief while beating the Tour peloton the Paris by six days.

The popular Belgian Waffle Ride rolls into San Marcos this weekend with three days of festivals and bike racing, while the eponymous 132-mile multi-surface race takes place on Sunday.

A British woman was seriously injured when a commercial van driver apparently missed or ignored warning signs, and crashed into her while she was participating in an officially sanctioned time trial.

 

Finally…

How you, too, can become the country’s newest bicycle mayor. And always wear your helmet — it could save you from a tiger attack.

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

 

PCH widening will put bikes in door zone, support urged for CA bike/ped safety bills, and Branson lied about biking to launch

Nothing like sacrificing bike safety on the altar of parking that hasn’t even been built yet.

Malibu is finally getting around to widening a two-mile stretch of deadly PCH between Webb Way and Puerco Canyon Road to improve safety for people on bicycles.

Except instead of adding bike lanes, they’re merely widening the shoulder so there’s room to add parking, while allowing bikes to share the space on the side of the roadway with the new parked cars.

Which means instead of dodging cars in the traffic lanes, bicyclists will now have to dodge swinging doors from parked cars. And risk getting knocked into those traffic lanes in front of speeding drivers if they don’t.

So if you ride the coast highway, tell everyone you know to tune into Monday’s virtual meeting of the Malibu Planning Commission.

And tell them to go back to the drawing board.

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Streets For All has made a number of calls to urge support for important transportation safety bills in the state legislature in recent days.

Unfortunately, most have come too late to repeat here, with the deadline for comments coming before you’d likely have a chance to see it and respond.

However, this one is different.

The LA traffic safety PAC is urging you to send an email before 4 pm today to support a pair of common sense bills allowing bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, and eliminating the state’s blanket prohibition on jaywalking.

Two bills to make our streets safer and friendlier for walking and biking have passed the Senate Transportation Committee and will soon be voted on by the Senate Appropriations Committee:

  • AB 122 would legalize the safety stop, allowing people on bikes to yield at stop signs. Eight states and a number of local jurisdictions have already taken this measure, and research has shown a reduction in bicycle injuries of up to 23% as a result.
  • AB 1238 would replace the archaic ban on “jaywalking” with common sense rules for crossing the street. Today’s laws are used as a pretext for racial profiling and originated from auto industry pressure and corruption.

Both of these bills are important for democratizing our street space. It is time for the rules of the road to reflect the needs of different users, rather than just motorists.

Please use our template below to email a comment to the Appropriations Committee by 4 PM on Wednesday, July 14. Feel free to add your own message, and remember to enter your name and address at the bottom for your comment to be considered.

Streets For All offers an email template you can modify and send to show your support for the bills, with the correct email addresses already included.

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Speaking of Streets For All, Joe Linton politely pointed out that I got the date wrong, and the group’s Zoom happy hour with UCLA parking expert and professor emeritus Donald Shoup is from 5 to 6 pm this evening, rather than last night.

Confirming once again that I have no idea what the hell day it is any more.

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That bike commute billionaire Richard Branson took to get to Sunday’s maiden launch of his Virgin Galactic flight into space?

Never happened.

According to Reuters, an anonymous company official admitted it was all a publicity stunt, and the famous ride was actually staged nearly a week before the brief flight.

Never mind that the faked video was supposed to form the basis for a cross-promotion with Trek, which will now be left looking like fools if they use it as originally planned.

Next they’ll probably tell us the flight was staged, too.

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This is who we share the road with.

A Seattle bike rider was confronted by a road-raging driver, apparently for the crime of not confronting him when the motorist made a dangerous and illegal turn to go the wrong way on a traffic circle, and the rider just shook his head and went around him.

Then this —

It’s worth clicking on the tweets to read the whole tread, because most of us have been in similar situations with angry drivers.

And if you haven’t yet, chances are you will.

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That feeling when an Austin, Texas bike lane is just a feeder route for Pennywise the Clown.

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Oh, nothing. Just someone riding a bike one handed, with a bag suspended on his handlebars and a sofa on his head.

@albeezyyyyyy

One man moving company

♬ original sound – Albert Molina

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

There’s a special place in hell for a St. Louis hit-and-run driver who murdered two people at once when he ran down a 19-year old woman riding her bike home from work, despite being six months pregnant.

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

A California appeals court upheld the 16-year sentence for a man who calmly rode off on his bicycle after fatally stabbing an acquaintance in a South LA parking lot.

An Ohio man was shot by police when he pulled a knife on a cop, after he was stopped for carrying a baseball bat on his bike in an early morning incident.

New York police are looking for a Brooklyn bike rider who groped a woman’s ass as she walked on a sidewalk, then yanked down her top, exposing her breasts, before riding off. But at least the cops managed to get a damn good security cam image of the schmuck’s face before he disappeared.

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Local

The Bike Shop offers a look at last month’s Culver City Pride Ride.

Streetsblog looks at some of the 31 grants made to SoCal cities and groups as part of SCAG’s Go Human campaign, focusing on three in the San Gabriel Valley.

 

State

This is who we share the road with. A San Diego driver crashed his car not once, not twice, but thrice in just a few blocks while allegedly driving under the influence of…something.

Seriously? At least some San Diego residents are complaining that a new coastal bike path is too wide, arguing that it’s designed more like a highway.

Kern County advocacy group Bike Bakersfield offers tips for riding in hot summer weather. Which is something we’re all going to have to get used to.

San Luis Obispo has a shiny new protected intersection, the city’s first. But needless to say, some drivers find it confusing.

Participants in this year’s Pedal the Pacific campaign stop in Santa Cruz on their 1,700-mile ride down the Left Coast to call attention to sex trafficking. Note to Santa Cruz Sentinel — Just because a group of young women are riding together, a cycling team that does not make.

A Bay Area TV station explains what a bicycle superhighway is, as plans move forward for one in Santa Clara County.

Forbes tests Brompton’s new ebike foldie on the hills of San Francisco.

Sad news from Merced, where a 64-year old Ventura County man is under arrest for the hit-and-run death of a 22-year old man after rear-ending his bicycleNote to cowards — If you’re going to run after a fatal crash, take your damn license plate with you. Or better yet, don’t.

 

National

Axios demonstrates a keen grasp of the obvious, observing that the US has a lot to learn from Europe when it comes to bike friendly cities.

While bikemakers everywhere are struggling to get the parts they need during the pandemic bike boom, Seattle-based ebike maker Rad Power has cut 50 days off the supply chain simply by shifting overseas deliveries to a different port that isn’t so backed up.

A Colorado woman is on trial for murder after shooting an alleged meth-using man who had threatened her after she threw his bicycles and drug paraphernalia into the trash.

A San Antonio, Texas bike ride will stop at a pair of the city’s murals promoting vaccinations to call attention to the need to get your shot to fight Covid-19. And yes, that means you.

Kindhearted Pittsburgh firefighters made a little kid’s day by doing a little repair work after he flagged them over to fix the broken training wheels on his bike.

New York Streetsblog complains that the city’s Department of Transportation doesn’t care that a protected bike lane is being blocked by construction work.

 

International

London’s Independent recommends gear for people inspired to ride by the Tour de France.

Here’s your chance to own Princess Diana’s childhood chopper bicycle, if you have a spare thirty to forty grand lying around.

The 72-year old aide on the British version of The Apprentice will be off the show for the foreseeable future after falling off his ebike, and undergoing a number of surgeries due to the “horrific” crash.

 

Competitive Cycling

By the time you read this, Tadej Pogačar will be deeply engaged in defending his yellow jersey in the penultimate mountain top Pyrénées finish in the Tour de France, offering competitors just two more chances to realistically deny him a second straight title.

Pogačar is expressing his confusion over the “strange” tactics other teams are using, at the same time they’re complaining about his team.

Four-time Tour winner Chris Froome says Pogačar has the race all wrapped up as long as he keeps his bike upright during the final week.

Cycling Weekly fills in the details on Aussie cyclist Lachlan Morton’s solo challenge to beat the peloton into Paris by six days, riding the same routes followed by the Tour de France, plus every mile in between. Morton’s ride has raised nearly half a million dollars for World Bicycle Relief, enough to send 3,110 rugged new bicycles to Africa for people in need. Although Bike Radar seems more concerned with his bikepacking rig.

Rouleur celebrates Marianne Vos’ record 30 stage wins in the Giro d’Italia Donne, which used to be known as the Giro Rosa, and her decade-long domination of women’s cycling.

Three-time world champ Peter Sagan is officially out of the Tokyo Olympics after the Slovak Olympic Committee and Cycling Federation said he won’t recover from recent knee surgery in time to compete.

Outside challenges you to take part in one of their favorite bike races this summer.

 

Finally…

That feeling when the ‘bent bike that drops you looks like a banana. Get a new bike for the price of a canned iced tea — but only if you live north of the border.

And good thing bike riders tend to wear quick drying clothes.

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

 

Donation match for LA’s 1st private/public bike lane partnership, and unconfirmed bicycling death in Solano Beach

Back in my blissfully misspent youth, there was a popular cartoon that showed a couple buzzards sitting on a fence.

One turns to the other, and says “Patience my ass. I’m going to kill something.”

It seemed funny at the time.

But that’s kind of where some LA bike advocates are right now.

Rather than wait endlessly for the city to finally get around to improving safety for bike riders and pedestrians on Sunset and Santa Monica Blvds, they’re trying to speed things up by helping pay for it through a private/public sponsorship.

And they need your help.

Here’s how Terence Heuston, the former author of LA Bike Dad, describes it.

Sunset4All, in partnership with the LACBC, is launching a crowdfunding “match” campaign to fund the initial engineering plans for protected bike lanes and pedestrian improvements on Sunset and Santa Monica Boulevards through East Hollywood, Silver Lake, and Echo Park.

If the community reaches our $25,000 goal, angel donors will MATCH THEIR DONATION. Every dollar of their tax-deductible donation will be DOUBLED if we reach our goal! Declare your independence from traffic by donating before 4th of July!

The NUMBER of donors is as important as the number of dollars. The city of LA installs safe street projects where there is broad community support. Every individual donor is an individual VOTE for this project. Even a small donation is tangible PROOF that Angelenos support safer streets and protected bike lanes.

The private/public partnership model has been used successfully in other regions to accelerate the installation of the Arapahoe bike lanes in Denver and the Indianapolis Cultural Trail. We want to transfer this innovative model to Los Angeles and release a flood of protected bike lanes region wide. It all starts with Sunset4All reaching its fundraising goal.

You can learn more — and contribute — here.

And yes, I just opened my wallet and put my money where my mouth is. If every else gives the same amount, we just need another 999 people to follow suit.

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I’m still waiting on official confirmation. But sadly, it looks like another bike rider has been killed in San Diego County.

This comes follows on the heels of another tragic death just a few miles south in La Jolla, where a young mother from India was killed when she was run down by a 74-year old driver while making a lane change on her bike on Tuesday.

Assuming the victim’s death is confirmed, that will mean nine people have been killed riding their bikes on the suddenly mean streets of San Diego County in just the first six months of this year.

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Calbike calls on everyone to write your California state senator to urge their support — or in one case, opposition — for a trio of bills.

AB 371: This measure will place a large and unprecedented insurance requirement on shared mobility systems. It won’t make our streets safer but it will put every bike-share system in California, public and private, out of business. Email your senator to vote NO on AB 371 to save bike-share.

AB 122 (Boerner Horvath): The bicycle safety stop (first introduced in Idaho in 1982) makes biking safer and easier, but some California groups don’t want this commonsense, pro-bike measure to become law. Tell your senator to vote YES on AB 122, the Bicycle Safety Stop Bill.

AB 1238 (Ting): The Freedom to Walk Act puts an end to unjust jaywalking laws advanced by the auto industry a century ago.  these laws prevent people from enjoying their streets on foot safely, in the interest of making them the exclusive domain of cars. Today, jaywalking laws serve as a sometimes tragic pretext for biased policing, as a hugely disproportionate share of jaywalking tickets are issued to Black Californians.  Tell your senator to support the Freedom to Walk Act, AB 1238.

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After several years covering the transportation beat, the LA Times Laura J. Nelson is taking on a new role as a rapid-response enterprise/investigative reporter.

Over the years, Nelson developed an encyclopedic knowledge of Los Angeles transportation issues, and her insights and in-depth reporting will be missed.

On the other hand, that means that her old job is now available.

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Ride in solidarity with the Metro Bikeshare and Donut Friend Unions tomorrow.

As the son of a union man, I only wish my slowly healing hands would let me join in on the ride.

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We’ll have to see how it ends up when they flesh out the details. But right now, it looks like active transportation may have lost out in the bipartisan compromise on the transportation bill.

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Pink Bike wants to teach you how to actually learn new bike skills.

Evidently, there’s a lot to learn, since this is just episode one of a ten part series.

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This is who we share the road with.

Apparently, bear spray has become the weapon of choice for aggrieved motorists and insurrectionists.

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

No bias here. A Laguna Beach paper compares teenage ebike riders to the Lord of the Flies. No, really.

A nine-year old English boy was the victim of anti-bike sabotage, suffering a serious neck injury when he rode his bike into a rope someone had strung across a trail at neck level. Let’s hope whoever did this faces serious charges when they catch the jerk.

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

A woman made her escape by bicycle after robbing a San Diego nail salon at gunpoint.

Prosecutors threw the book at the San Francisco thief who was recorded riding his bicycle out of a Walgreens after dumping a pharmacy shelf into a bag, filing 15 charges for robbing the same store four days in a row.

Authorities near my Colorado hometown are looking for a man who apparently took offense when a woman nearly backed over his fellow bike rider, and punched her in the face. Seriously, don’t do that. It’s only natural to feel anger and fear when someone nearly hits you or a riding companion, but violence is never the answer.

A New Jersey man faces weapons charges after he dropped a stolen handgun when he was struck by a driver while riding his bike in Atlantic City.

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Local

Los Angeles is finally getting around to connecting the county’s disconnected rail system to the airport, with a new station that also promises to improve bicycling connections to LAX. Meanwhile, bike advocate Michael Schneider says why wait, when you can ride to LAX right now? Thanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

LA County received $32 million in grants from the California Transportation Commission, including $5.6 million for a two way, 1.5-mile protected cycle track on Union Street in Pasadena.

Streets for All is hosting a Culver City Pride Ride this Sunday.

Santa Monica-based Bird is getting into the e-bikeshare business.

California’s Clean Mobility Options program, funded by the state’s cap-and-trade system, will fund a $1 million e-bikeshare system for residents of the Rancho San Pedro affordable housing community, near the Port of Los Angeles; 19 other clean energy projects around the state will receive grants up to $1 million.

 

State

Enjoy a 10-mile, no one left behind, kickoff ride for the new Over the Hump mountain bike season in Laguna Niguel on July 8th.

The manager of Costa Mesa’s Specialized bike shop shares his favorite Orange County trails.

Despite years of outreach, some businesses and residents in San Diego’s North Park neighborhood still seem to be surprised, if not angry, over the loss of 450 parking spaces to makes room for new protected bike lanes on 30th Street.

Speaking of parking, San Diego is moving forward with a proposal to remove parking minimums for many businesses. Hopefully Los Angeles will follow suit.

San Jose removed traffic lanes on two downtown streets to give bike riders new concrete barrier-protected bike lanes, replacing the previous painted bike lanes.

 

National

City Lab says open streets aren’t always open to everyone, including people with disabilities, for whom they can be closed.

Gear Junkie offers tips on how to buy a used bicycle.

All seven victims of last weekend’s Show Low AZ vehicular attack remain hospitalized, with six in Arizona and one in New Mexico; the driver who deliberately ran them over with his pickup is also hospitalized in stable condition after being shot by police.

Heartbreaking news from Denver, where an 11-year old boy in suburban Aurora has now undergone five operations in two weeks since he was run down by an alleged drunk driver while riding his bicycle, and dragged 50 feet beneath the driver’s car.

Not all Austin, Texas bike riders are thrilled about sharing their bike lanes with pizza delivery robots.

After an Oklahoma group gave a young man a new bike when they learned he had to walk 17 miles roundtrip to work and back, a crowdfunding campaign raised nearly $50,000 to buy him a new car. Which just goes to show that kind gestures can take an unexpected bad turn.

While Los Angeles continues its over-reliance on motor vehicles, Cleveland — yes, Rest Belt Cleveland — is reimagining itself as a denser, more walkable city effectively served by transit. Although it’s accused of backpedaling on plans for a sidewalk-level, two-way cycle track.

New York mayoral frontrunner Eric Adams promises that if he wins, he’ll ride his bike around town, take the subway and walk through neighborhoods like former Mayor John Lindsey in the ’60s. Which would be a big change from outgoing Mayor de Blasio, who’s infamous for being driven to the gym in a massive SUV.

A Florida man got ten years for stabbing a woman as she rode her bike in West Palm Beach, in an apparently unprovoked attack.

 

International

Yes, your ebike can get wet. But don’t try riding it through the pool.

Pink Bike questions whether mixed-wheel bikes, aka mullet bikes, with one wheel larger than the other, are here to stay.

Momentum Magazine rolls with Welsh DJ Dom Whiting and his mobile cargo bike party.

Ebikes far outsold electric cars in the UK last year, despite a government subsidy for the latter, as one ebike was sold in the country every three minutes. Meanwhile, British bicycling deaths jumped 40% last year, due at least in part to an increase in dangerous driving during the pandemic.

A stoned English driver got a well-deserved 11 years behind bars for killing two bike-riding men while speeding 30 miles over the speed limit in a stolen car.

An Indian writer says bicycling is back in vogue in the country.

People in Lebanon are taking to their bikes as the country runs out of gas. Literally.

Ebike sales have doubled in Singapore, driven by demand from food delivery workers.

 

Competitive Cycling

After a near-absence from the Tour de France in recent years, North Americans are making a strong comeback to the peloton, with four riders from the US, along with another three from Canada.

A writer for Bicycling offers a lengthy dissertation on what happens when she meets her idol, Primož Roglič. And yes, you can read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A writer for the AP says the Tour de France could come down to a rematch between fellow Slovenian’s Roglič and Tadej Pogačar.

French cyclist Audrey Cordon-Ragot says it’s about damn time there was a women’s Tour de France once again, as this year’s final La Course becomes the stepping stone to next year’s women’s Tour. Although she may not have put it quite that way.

Thirty-eight-year old Dutch cyclist Koen de Kort may have seen his cycling career come to an end after three fingers on his right hand were amputated following a crash in an off-road vehicle. And fellow Dutch cycling star Maurits Lammertink will miss the Tour de France after he was rushed into surgery for a brain injury caused by a collision with a scooter rider.

The director of the women’s Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus cycling team was banned for three-years after several riders accused him of sexual misconduct and harassment.

Dutch cyclist Mathieu van der Poel is proof that sometimes, greatness runs in the family.

https://twitter.com/AlpecinFenix/status/1408123568714665994

 

Finally…

Your next Mercedes Benz could have just two wheels, and a battery. Proof you can be a billionaire fashion mogul and still bike to work.

And former pro Fabian Cancellara is selling…something.

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Thanks to David E for an unexpected donation to help support this site, and keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day.

Okay, almost every day. 

Donations of any amount, at any time and for any reason, are always appreciated. 

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

School of Rock drummer killed in Chicago bike crash, support urged for CA ebike rebate bill, and San Diego bike path opens

Before we start, a special thanks to Bicycle Attorney Thomas Forsyth for renewing his ad on this site for the coming year. 

Remarkably, despite the pandemic, all three of our sponsors have renewed their ads for another year. 

Which matters because it’s their support, along with yours, that makes BikinginLA possible. 

………

More heartbreaking news about another needless loss.

Keven Clark, who played drummer Freddy “Spazzy McGee” Jones in 2003’s School of Rock, was killed when he was struck by a driver while riding his bike yesterday.

The 32-year old musician was just 12 years old when he costarred with Jack Black and Joan Cusack in the hit movie, despite a lack of acting experience.

He had just formed a new band that performed live for the first time over the weekend.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times,

Clark was riding a bicycle early Wednesday when he was struck and killed at a notoriously dangerous intersection on the Northwest Side. He was hit by a Hyundai Sonata around 1:20 a.m. in the 2600 block of North Western Avenue, Chicago police said.

Paramedics found him on Logan Boulevard and took him to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 2:04 a.m., according to the Chicago Fire Department and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

The driver of the Hyundai, a 20-year-old woman, was issued several citations, police said.

A report in the Chicago Tribune alleges Clark was hit after running a red light.

Maybe someday, we’ll decide that too many people have died because of motor vehicles and the people who drive them, and actually do something about it.

But like gun violence, we seem to just talk about it, and look the other way.

School of Rock poster from Wikipedia.org.

Thanks to Tim Rutt and Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

Calbike is calling on everyone to contact your state assemblymember to support AB 117, the E-Bike Affordability Bill.

The bill would provide purchase incentives to increase the affordability of ebikes by through subsidies for up to 10,000 people, similar to the $7,000 subsidies the state provides to buyers of electric cars.

Combined with a proposed federal tax rebate for ebike buyers, it could dramatically cut the cost of ebikes to replace motor vehicle use.

Maybe a jump in ebikes would finally push more California cities to provide safe spaces to ride them.

And yes, I’m talking to you, Los Angeles.

Thanks to Keith Johnson for the tip.

………

San Diego cut the ribbon on the barrier-protected Rose Creek bike path, adding another two miles to the 44 mile Coastal Rail Trail.

I definitely could have used that when I lived down there years ago.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

………

A new video from Streets For All examines the true cost of LA’s freeway obsession.

………

This is who we share the road with.

A road raging Maserati driver in DC got out of his car and opened fire on a woman with her two kids in the car, then apparently turned and shot at witnesses in another car.

………

A bike rider was injured during a New York bicycle protest to mark the first anniversary of George Floyd’s murder at the hands of Minneapolis police, after he jumped on the hood of a Volkswagen as the driver tried to push through the crowd of protesters.

Meanwhile, a second bike rider was injured by the driver as they tried to speed away.

New York police followed that up by “inadvertently” sideswiping another bike rider while pursuing the Volkswagen driver.

But at least it’s nice to know the cops didn’t do it on purpose, anyway.

………

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

Bike riders get just 22% of a Brooklyn street space, even though they more than equal the number of motor vehicles that use it.

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

A Catholic bishop in Oakland was robbed at gunpoint by a man who demanded his money and bishop’s ring before speeding off on a bicycle.

A Mad City woman was busted for throwing a bicycle at another person during a large disturbance. No word on whether she was actually riding it or if she just grabbed the nearest thing she could throw.

………

Local

The Source offers a preview of today’s Metro Board meeting, which would finalize the route for the NoHo to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit line along Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock, as well as consider highway funding and free bus and train fares for students and low income people.

Child soap star Scarlett Fernandez is one of us, although she may regret that right now; the 11-year old General Hospital actor had surgery on both arms after crashing her bike, as well as getting stitches on her chin and suffering four broken teeth.

 

State

A Half Moon Bay rancher and city councilmember alleges he was racially profiled as “a dirty Mexican” by a sheriff’s deputy as he rode his bike into the city; the sheriff claims the deputy knew who he was and was merely concerned that he was riding recklessly.

Sacramento may require e-scooter users to scan their driver’s licenses in an attempt to stop underage users. Although that would also block any adult without one.

Nice story from Redding, where the community got together to raise funds to buy a new ebike for a school security guard and coach who suffers from a hereditary form of neuropathy; after the fundraiser surpassed the $2,500 goal, a local organization said they would pay for the bike, and use the funds to customize it for his disability.

 

National

Writing for The Hill, a trio of top-level advocates make the case for sidewalks, trails and bike lanes are essential transportation infrastructure belonging in the new transportation bill currently being written in Congress; the bill was later amended to include $7.2 billion for infrastructure for bicyclists and pedestrians, as well as setting aside another $1.6 billion for vulnerable road users.

A new report from the Brookings Institute says we can’t beat climate change without rethinking land use, calling for a return to “traditional people-centered neighborhood designs” that will reduce the need to drive.

Trek is recalling over 340,00 Bontrager pedals in the US and Canada that can fall off if they’re not properly installed.

Seattle Bike Blog says the bike shortage induced by the coronavirus bike boom will probably continue into next year.

An Idaho mountain bike park finally opened after being delayed a year by wildfires that raged through the West.

An army vet stopped in Idaho to inspire students at a school for the deaf and blind; the totally blind woman is bicycling across the US, aided by sighted guides in front and behind her.

An associate professor at Ohio’s Bowling Green State University will ride across the US this summer to raise funds for public education; Dr. Chris Willis will take the Adventure Cyclists Association’s northern tier route, passing through 51 school districts he hopes to help fund at the end of the trip. You can donate to his trip here. Thanks again to Tim Rutt.

A Streetsblog op-ed calls on the State of New York to pass a bill allowing for wider e-cargo bikes; current law limits them to 36 inches, while a proposed bill would legalize cargo trikes up to 55 inches — far more than the standard 48″ width.

A Pennsylvania school built a school bike shop in honor of a 17-year old former student, who found himself through the school’s mountain biking program, but was killed in a collision while coming home from his dream job at Trek.

 

International

A new anti-theft device can set off an alarm if anyone moves your bike, and provide GPS and WiFi tracking to help recover it if it’s stolen.

Police in Victoria, British Columbia recovered a custom-built bicycle donated to a special needs kid by the Make-A-Wish Foundation, hours after putting out a call for the public’s help in finding the stolen bike.

Montreal has more Stanley Cups than Toronto. And more bike lanes, too.

Queen guitarist Brian May credits riding his bicycle with saving his life following a heart attack he believes was caused by Covid-19.

Unbelievable. A Scottish hit-and-run driver walks without a single day behind bars for killing a bike rider, then taking his car to two repair shops in an effort to cover up the crime.

Italian bike maker Colnago sold a digital NFT of one of its bike frames for $8,600, which is $2,300 more than the frame itself sells for. And you can’t ride it, either.

 

Competitive Cycling

Giro GC leader Egan Bernal cracked in Wednesday’s stage 17, but ended up losing just three seconds.

Rouleur profiles today’s stage 18 of the Giro, the longest stage in the three week race at 143 miles.

History looks at nine doping scandals that changed sports; fortunately, only three involved cyclists, including our old buddy Lance.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to steal a cellphone from a woman while riding your bike, try to avoid projectile vomiting on a parked car when the cops stop you. That feeling when being chased by chainsaw-wielding cycling fans may have inspired you to victory.

And your next bike could magically transform from a tall bike to a chopper.

But you have to build it yourself.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Worldwide Ride of Silence tonight, and video Wednesday with L39ION of LA and proposed Ballona Creek extension

Today marks the worldwide Ride of Silence to honor fallen bike riders.

Something we’ve seen far too much of here in Southern California.

Then again, one is one too many.

Unfortunately, though, there don’t appear to be any rides planned in the LA area, as the pandemic has taken its toll of group rides.

However, there are rides scheduled tonight in Bakersfield, Thousand Oaks, Riverside and Fullerton.

If you’re planning a ride that’s not listed here, even if you’re just throwing one together at the last minute, let me know and I’ll try to get the word out.

………

L39ION of Los Angeles just dropped a new video highlighting the next chapter for the LA cycling team focusing on increasing diversity in the sport.

Bicycling says you need to see it now.

So here it is.

As usual, you can read the article on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

………

A video produced by Santa Monica College students examines Streets For All’s proposal to extend the Ballona Creek bike path to the eastern end of the creek.

………

If you’ve got a few extra bucks, an armless Portland man is crowdfunding money to fix the custom adaptive bike that allows him to ride, after it was damaged hitting some sort of bump.

………

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

No bias here. A Vancouver writer asks why city planners insist on putting bicyclists before people. Because evidently, we’re not quite human as far as she’s concerned.

A Boston transit driver makes an illegal turn across one separated bike lane into another, just missing a bike rider in the process.

………

Local

Pasadena police will hold yet another crackdown this Friday on traffic violations that put bike riders and pedestrians at risk, regardless of who commits them. So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limit line, so you’re not the one who gets written up. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Santa Monica says go ride a bike. And offers a free cargo bike loaner to families of local school students.

 

State

Great idea. Caltrans is funding a $200,000 program to “teach students about safe urban cycling, bike mechanic skills and to encourage ridership through group bike rides” at three Santa Ana schools for the next two years.

Forty-two-year old parolee Jamison Connor went on trial yesterday for the head-on hit-and-run crash that killed 36-year- old Vista resident Kevin Lentz while he was riding in Escondido in 2019.

A Rancho Cucamonga science teacher makes an amazing return engagement to American Ninja Warrior — three years after he was nearly killed in a collision while riding his bike.

Bakersfield could soon get its own bikeshare system. Yes, Bakersfield.

A Santa Cruz website marks Bike Month in one of the state’s most dangerous counties to ride a bike.

SF Gate offers tips on how to carry almost anything on your bike.

A Bay Area writer says it’s time to drop bike licensing requirements, which are too often used as a pretext for police to target Black and brown bike riders.

Sad news from Merced County, where a 67-year old man was killed when his bike was run down from behind by a pickup driver while he was riding in the traffic lane without lights or reflectors long after dark.

Sacramento Magazine recommends a road bike ride on the city’s 23-mile American River Parkway, compete with 23 restrooms along the way.

 

National

Writing for Outside, a triathlete says killing cyclists is as American as mass shootings.

The Manual considers how much weight you can lose by riding a bicycle. That depends. How much have you got?

Seattle is asking for people to vote on a name for their cute little protect bike lane sweeper. Not surprisingly, Sweepy McSweepface is a popular choice.

A Seattle-area letter writer says signaling a turn can sometimes increase the risk for bike riders, who have to take a hand off their handlebars.

A ghost bike was installed for reigning master’s age group national road champ Gwen Inglis, who was killed on Sunday when she was run down from behind by an allegedly stoned driver while riding in a Lakewood, Colorado bike lane.

Relearning how to ride a bike in bike-unfriendly Wyoming.

A kindhearted Texas high school student crowdfunded money to buy a new bicycle, helmet and water bottle, along with a gift card for bike shoes, for a school bus driver who goes out of her way to help her kids.

An Illinois paper misses the point, saying the bicycling death of famed German architect Helmut Jahn calls attention to “a shared responsibility by all road users…to take some precautions to make safety a priority.” Except only it’s just the people in the big, dangerous machines who pose a risk to everyone else.

 

International

A London e-scooter user is caught on video crashing head-on into a bike rider. And for once it’s not the person on two wheels who gets the blame.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a truck driver got a lousy eight months behind bars for killing a man who was commuting to work on his bike to get fit for his daughter’s wedding.

Irish food delivery riders complain about the dangerous time pressures they face while working for the equivalent of less that $10 per hour.

A new study says Western Australia’s three foot passing law corresponds to a rise in aggressive behavior towards people on bicycles. However, correlation is not causation; more likely drivers under increased stress are taking it out on bike riders simply because we’re here, and they can.

 

Competitive Cycling

It’s now okay for Giro cyclists to toss their water bottles to fans, but only in the last 31 miles of each stage.

New Zealand’s George Bennett says his poor performance in the first week of the Giro is one of the biggest disappointments of his professional cycling career.

Twenty-one-year old Belgian cyclist Remco Evenepoel is experiencing just the opposite of Bennett, sitting a mere 14 seconds shy of the pink leader’s jersey in his first race back from his horrific crash in last year’s Tour of Lombardy.

 

Finally…

Your inner tubes could be reborn as someone’s dress. And whose bloody fingerprints are on the very cold corpse of the racing ‘bent?

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Council candidate calls for Ballona extension, MUTCD comments due Friday, and always ride with adorable kids

Update: That crowdfunding campaign for 31-year old Adriana “Fishy” Rodriguez, who left five young children without a mother when she was killed by a driver while riding her bike in Lincoln Heights last month, has now raised half of the $7,000 goal.

Thank you to everyone who dug into their own pockets to help these kids.

If you haven’t given yet, take a few minutes to donate to the GoFundMe account that was established for Rodriguez before she died.

………

CD4 City Council candidate Scott Epstein highlights Streets For All’s proposal to extend the Ballona Creek bike path to the creek’s eastern terminus in Mid-City Los Angeles, where it would connect with a planned Bicycle Friendly Street leading into Hollywood.

Speaking of Epstein, the longtime LA Bicycle Advisory Committee member is raising funds for his campaign to put another much-needed bike friendly voice on the city council.

………

Time’s running out to comment on the tone-deaf, auto-centric revision to the MUTCD, the traffic engineering street design manual.

And tell them to throw the damn thing out and start over with something that treats bike riders, pedestrians and transit users like we belong here, too.

 

………

Don’t junk your old wheels, turn them into art.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the link.

………

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

Britain’s immense Bolton Abbey estate continues to deny it has a ban on bike riders and equestrians, but the barricades and security guards blocking a key bridge would argue otherwise.

A London park’s code of conduct tells bike riders not to scare the people in the big, dangerous machines. No, really.

………

Local

Metro is offering a chance to win a $200 gift card just for completing their annual bikeshare survey.

Progressive news site KnockLA says we can’t lose a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to plan the future of the LA River, calling the county’s Geary-designed draft LA River Master Plan just flat out bad. I wish I could disagree with them, but yeah.

A working mom in South LA’s Windsor Hills neighborhood has converted an empty parking lot on Slauson Blvd into the RideWitUS-LA bike shop and bike club to serve LA’s long-neglected African American community.

A Chicago journalist arrived in Santa Monica at the end of a 2,500-mile ride from the Windy City, collecting people’s stories about Covid-19 along the way.

 

State

No bias here. A San Francisco supervisor is sharply criticized for comparing efforts to keep JFK Drive in Golden Gate Park carfree to segregation in the 1950s South, because the park is so hard for people from his largely Black district to reach if they don’t drive. Which is a far better argument for better transit than turning the street back over to motor vehicles.

 

National

Gear Patrol looks at long overdue efforts to diversify bicycling and make it more welcoming for people of color.

The Week says there’s a simple and cheap way to make room on the roads for bicycles and transit — just put an end to car supremacy. Unfortunately, like other forms of supremacy, calling to end it is a lot easier than actually doing it.

The people who brought you the Commodore 64 and 8-bit Atari are the designers behind a new ped-assist ebike.

This is who we share the road with. An Oregon driver is on trial for the road rage death of a motorcyclist, after repeated swerving his oversized pickup into the biker’s lane. Although he just faces felony vehicular homicide charges, rather than the murder count his actions would seem to call for.

Oklahoma’s governor has signed that state’s version of an Idaho Stop Law, allowing bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, and treat red lights like stop signs.

Kindhearted cops in a Detroit suburb pitched in to buy a new bike for a Taco Bell employee, after someone stole the bicycle he used as his only form of transportation.

Outgoing New York Mayor de Blasio announces plans to install five major busways and another 30 miles of protected bike lanes this year, in a major move to reshape the city’s streets before he leaves office. Although Streetsblog complains he’s not doing anything to curtail private car use.

Speaking of de Blasio, a Staten Island writer complains about plans to cut the speed limit on a major artery to 30 mph, calling it a traffic ticket money grab on the mayor’s part — even while acknowledging that dropping the speed limit is one of the best ways to halt the rising toll of pedestrian deaths.

And capping off our de Blasio trifecta, the mayor finally got out of his chauffeured SUV and onto a bikeshare bike, suddenly getting a new perspective of the city.

Pennsylvania snowboard maker Gilson Snow has introduced a sustainable wooden bicycle, made with the same laminated wood used in their boards.

Tragic news from Florida, where a bike-riding man and women were killed in a collateral damage crash when an allegedly stoned driver crashed into an oncoming SUV while passing slower traffic in a no-passing zone, knocking the SUV over and onto a bike trail next to the roadway, where the couple riding their tandem bike were sitting ducks.

You know you’re in bike-friendly Portland when business owners sign a petition calling for new protected bike lanes on their street, instead of fighting them.

 

International

Your kid’s next balance bike could be a Bentley.

The Ecologist explains the reasoning behind the Car Free Megacities campaign to transform London, Paris and New York by greatly reducing motor vehicle use. Maybe they can pretty please include LA in that, too.

No surprise here. Drivers and bicyclists disagreed over popup bike lanes in Waterloo, Ontario, with bike riders feeling safer while drivers felt inconvenienced.

A Halifax, Nova Scotia paper argues that poorly executed Slow Streets could be worse than none at all, after a bike rider was hit by a truck driver who claimed he had no idea he was driving on one (scroll down).

A British expat living in Copenhagen strangely calls on bike riders to stop intertexting — using a smartphone while crossing an intersection — rather than just leaving your damn phone alone while riding.

Shimano considers the future of bicycling in bike-loving Belgium.

Clever idea, as German bikemaker Convercycle introduced a new e-cargo bike with a wheelbase that extends and contracts, depending on your needs.

Horrible story from China, where an ebike battery exploded on a crowded elevator, sending four people to the hospital, including a five-month old baby.

Cycling Tips looks at the highlights this year’s Australia Handmade Bicycle Show.

 

Competitive Cycling

American Joe Dombrowski celebrated an early birthday by surviving a long breakaway to win a dramatic, rain-soaked fourth stage of the Giro, while Italy’s Alessandro De Marchi slipped into the pink leader’s jersey.

Meanwhile, VeloNews talks with some of stars of the WorldTour about a stage they describe as “thrilling.”

 

Finally…

That feeling when you get bitten by Jesus of Nazareth’s dog. Forget the speakers, just take your entire DJ deck along on your ride.

And if you want to avoid having angry drivers stuck behind you, make sure to always bring some adorable little bike riders with you.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Former NTSB official says no deaths should be the only goal, legalize crossing the street, and building the 15 minute city

She gets it.

A former acting chair and board member of the NTSB says we know how to prevent traffic deaths.

And the only rational goal should be zero.

Sometimes I arrived at the scene of a business jet or helicopter crash, other times it was a train derailment, once it was a cargo ship lost in a hurricane — always, it involved a tragic loss of life. But despite the terrible toll of motor vehicle deaths on our nation, I never launched to the scene of a traffic crash. Why? Perhaps because the NTSB only has the capacity to investigate a handful of vehicle crashes each year. Perhaps because there weren’t any crashes classified as major disasters when I was on duty. But in 2019, more than 36,000 deaths were recorded on U.S. roads, so an average of nearly 700 traffic deaths occurred every week I was on duty.

Yet our nation doesn’t think of a traffic crash as a disaster, since deaths typically occur one or two at a time. Many of us don’t believe that every road death is preventable. As a nation, we haven’t yet decided that we can protect everyone, including the most vulnerable among us who use our streets and highways — people who are younger or older, people who are walking or biking, people with disabilities. We accept tens of thousands of deaths on our roads every year as simply unavoidable “accidents,” even though we have proven solutions to prevent them.

It’s worth a few minutes to read.

Because she’s right. There’s no acceptable number of traffic deaths.

And it’s long past time we did something about it.

………

Los Angeles Walks is joining with partners across the state on Monday for a national discussion about jaywalking and efforts to decriminalize it.

Like their sponsorship of AB 1238, aka the Freedom to Walk Act, which would get rid of California’s jaywalking law, which is too often used to target people of color.

You can register for the webinar here.

………

Streets For All hosts what promises to be a fascinating discussion with the creator of the Paris 15 Minute City Plan on May 11th.

The plan, which is currently being implemented in Paris, promises to put everything you need within a 15-minute walk, bike or transit ride, anywhere in the city.

The LA transportation PAC is also asking for you to take a stand in support for a proposal to make Calfornia’s Slow Streets permanent by emailing the Assembly Committee on Local Government by this coming Wednesday.

………

Give credit where credit is due.

Unless you’re LADOT, evidently.

………

Bike Talk discusses the bible of traffic engineers this Friday, which is undergoing its first revision in a decade.

………

A periodic reminder that bicycle are mobility devices.

And bike lanes help older and disabled people get around, without having to rely on a car.

………

Hats off to a kindhearted Cambridge MA cop, who took a few moments out of his day for an impromptu bike ride with a little boy.

………

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

A British bicyclist had to call off a fundraising ride across the country after a group of jerks men pushed him off his bike around the hallway point. Which makes the real victims the cancer charity he was raising funds for, and the people they could have helped.

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

Police in Ontario, Canada are looking for a bike rider who fled the scene after crashing his bike into a trash bin, while towing a trailer filled with 31 pounds of cannabis. And a guitar.

A bike-riding British thief uses his head to balance the spa he just stole.

………

Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

San Diego opens a new South Bay campground and bike park. But not together, unfortunately.

A Bakersfield bike path could be underwater through today, thanks to a water line break.

Speaking of Bakersfield, the city will kick off Bike Month with a solidarity ride this Saturday.

Trek CEO John Burke penned a heartfelt ode to his penpal Joe Shami, the 86-year old Legend of Mount Diablo, who was killed in a collision with a driver on yet another ride up the mountain earlier this month.

Bay Area transportation officials marked the beginning of Bike Month by announcing nine Bike Champion of the Year winners, honoring one person from each county in the Bay region for their commitment to bicycling.

The rich get richer. The Sacramento region is planning a bike freeway network connecting area cities, which could require an another 300 miles of trails in addition to the 450 miles already on the ground.

 

National

The Associated Press says give mom an ebike this year.

Outside says it’s time for a federal ebike tax credit.

AARP takes a look a look at bicycling over 55, including what to look for in a new bike, bikes for people with mobility issues, how to be safer on your bike, and eight of the nation’s top rail trails, including the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail.

Pop Sugar recommends ten padded bike shorts to make your ride — and presumably, your wallet — more comfortable.

Bicycling considers how to advocate for and protect the trails you ride this summer. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. And they probably will.

Even Honolulu is building a protected bike lane network.

The newest edition of Oregon’s state bicycling manual gets rid of labels in favor of more inclusive people-first language.

In a common lament across the country, Omaha, Nebraska has more bikeshare bikes than ever. Just not enough safe places to ride them.

They get it. A new survey shows Pittsburgh residents overwhelmingly support bike lanes, walking routes and reduced speed limits. And think traffic injuries are a major problem. Maybe someday someone will finally get around to asking Angelenos those same questions, so our elected leaders might finally see that the car-first crowd is just a very loud minority.

New York has sent a cease and desist order to a new rival to the city’s Citi Bike bikeshare system, saying the privately run dockless bikeshare isn’t authorized to do business in the city.

A New Jersey DJ pleads with lightless and scofflaw bicyclists to stay safe.

In an overly familiar story, DC traffic deaths continue to climb while Vision Zero funding is stuck in limbo.

Camila Cabello is one of us, as she goes for a bike ride through the streets of Miami.

 

International

Road.cc offers 14 tips on how to make your bike more comfortable. I’m a big fan of padded gloves, new bar tape and better insoles myself.

He gets it. A writer for Innovation Origins says we need more and better bike paths, not more helmet laws.

This is who we share the road with. A newlywed English teenager gets a well-deserved year behind bars for stealing a crate of eggs, then driving his car while friends threw the eggs out the window at passing people and cars, permanently blinding a motorcycle rider in his right eye with a direct hit. He took the fall for his friends, refusing to name who actually tossed the eggs.

Princess Di’s “shame” mixte bike sold for the equivalent of over $61,000, which the palace forced her to sell before her ill-fated marriage to Prince Chuck; the bike went for more than twice the presale estimate.

Add this to your bike bucket list, with eleven “of the best and most beautiful places” to ride your bike in Scotland.

Rouleur looks at the 18k gold framed bike famed Italian bikemaker Ernesto Colnago made for Pope — now Saint — John Paul II.

Heartbreaking story from India, where an elderly man was forced to carry his dead wife’s body on his bicycle for hours after villagers blocked him from the local crematorium for fear of Covid-19, even though there was no confirmation she ever had the disease.

 

Finally…

That feeling when God tells you to start a weekly bike night at the local skatepark.

And let’s consign “savages” to the racist dustbin of history. Even in reference to some truly despicable bike thieves.

Oh, and it’s “thief,” not “thieve.”

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Death of DC bike advocate reveals LA safety failures, LADOT bike count up 22%, and arrested for Biking While Black

Thanks to everyone for all the kind words following my surgery earlier this month. 

My fumble fingers are finally functional again, even though the swollen new Frankenhand they’re attached to is still almost, sort of, not really, kind of back to normal.

But it’ll get there. And nearly two weeks after surgery, the pain is already better than it was before, so there’s that.

Meanwhile, we have a lot to catch up on.

It will take a few days to catch up on all the bike news we missed, but I’ll make sure we don’t miss out on anything important. 

So let’s get started on the first installment. 

And my apologies for the near-total lack of credits today; with one exception forwarded by multiple people yesterday, I lost track of who sent what to my attention during my extended downtime, which is going to be a problem until we get caught up. 

Photo by Eva Elijas from Pexels.

……..

Heartbreaking news from DC, where a longtime bike advocate was killed in a collision, just hours after tweeting about the dangers on the city’s streets.

Here’s how the Washington Post described it.

(Jim) Pagels was struck in a horrific chain-reaction crash along Massachusetts Avenue NW, about a mile from his home on Capitol Hill, his family said. The avid rider and self-described urbanist who was in his second year of a doctorate program in economics, died at a hospital.

Pagels’s sister, Laura Menendez, described her brother as funny, smart and passionate about many things — pursuing his postgraduate studies, playing tennis and board games, and traveling by bike.

“He had a good heart,” Menendez said. “And he was such a huge advocate for bike safety.”

The paper also quotes a friend of Pagels.

“He was so excited about working in that urban space,” said Finn Vigeland, a close friend who met Pagels while the two worked on the Columbia Daily Spectator. “He was well aware of the dangers of cycling . . . but he loved biking, and he wanted everyone to bike. He wanted everyone to feel like this was the best way to get around D.C…

I hope our city leaders hear about Jim and understand the life that was so senselessly taken away on Friday. He cared so deeply about the injustices that led to his death, and he would want us to be furious about it,” Vigeland said. “I hope that knowing that this was something Jim was working so hard to change might prompt people to take bolder action.”

Let’s hope city leaders get the message here, too.

Before it’s too late for someone else.

Meanwhile, a writer for the LA Times took the death of his friend and former college classmate personally.

And used the tragedy as a springboard to call for safer streets, and talk with Michael Schneider, founder of LA street safety PAC Streets For All.

It doesn’t take long for their conversation to get to the heart of the problems on our streets.

ME: Six years ago, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti set a goal of zero traffic-related deaths by 2025, part of the global Vision Zero initiative. So far, we’re not on track to meet that goal. My colleague Steve Lopez recently reported that 238 people died in car crashes in Los Angeles last year — only a tiny decrease from 2019 despite significantly reduced traffic due to COVID-19, and just 8% less than the first full year Garcetti’s policy was in effect. What is going on?

SCHNEIDER: Our city is very good at plans and goals and not very good at implementation. Can you imagine if you were a heart surgeon and people were coming in for heart surgery, and no one would let you operate? Vision Zero is a laudable goal, but until we have a City Council and a mayor who will spend the political capital to make the tough decisions and deal with NIMBY blowback to make changes to our streets, it’s never going to happen…

ME: Where has Mayor Garcetti been on safe streets?

SCHNEIDER: Absent. He says all the right stuff, and he hires great people, like Seleta Reynolds. He will never risk his neck at all for a bike lane or a bus lane.

But I think we’re on the cusp of some exciting changes, especially because the city of Los Angeles has now aligned their elections with federal elections, and the turnout is so much larger and so much more progressive. I think we are on the cusp of truly having different political leadership, where a guy like Paul Koretz, who’s termed out, couldn’t win in 2022 and beyond. And where someone like Nithya Raman, who had making the city more bikeable in her campaign messaging, can defeat an incumbent.

Then there was this about the recent failed attempt to make iconic Melrose Ave safer and more livable for everyone.

ME: Talking about blowback, I read the post you wrote about the proposed “Uplift Melrose” project, which would have added protected bike lanes, wider sidewalks and shaded seating areas along a 1.3-mile stretch of Melrose Avenue. There was broad support from local businesses, but City Councilmember Paul Koretz effectively killed the proposal. Why is it so difficult politically to get changes like these approved?

SCHNEIDER: Opponents typically say the following: If you remove parking or reduce car capacity in any way, how are people going to shop or get to businesses? You’re going to kill business. They also ask, “Why would we invest in this when no one uses the bike lanes anyway?” People cite anecdotes of driving by bike lanes and seeing them empty.

If we had a beautiful six-lane paved highway that only went for one mile and then became a dirt road with potholes, how many cars would take that road? That is the equivalent of what we ask people to do when they bike around Los Angeles. If we had a network of protected bike lanes, you would see a ton of people using them. One piece of evidence is CicLAvia. Those events bring out tens of thousands of people to ride their bikes on closed streets.

What happened to Uplift Melrose was egregious even by L.A. standards. Koretz basically became a puppet for mostly white, wealthy homeowners who couldn’t see themselves riding a bike or a bus.

Pagels’ death serves as a tragic reminder of what can happen to anyone on the streets — even though the risk to any one of us at any particular time is infinitesimally small.

But if anything ever happens to me when I’m riding a bicycle, I want you to politicize the hell out of it.

Take what’s left of my body to the city council and dump it on the dais, if you have to.

Metaphorically speaking, of course. Or literally, for that matter.

And if it happens on a street marked for safety improvements in city’s mobility plan, I hope those lawyers up there on the right will join together to sue the hell out of the city for failing to keep their commitment to safer streets.

Or maybe just sue over LA’s failed and forgotten Vision Zero plan to force the cowards we foolishly elected to lead us to the changes we so desperately need on our streets.

………

LADOT has finally release the results of the city’s biennial walk and bike count, which for years has been done on a volunteer basis by the LACBC and later, LA Walks.

Which is something they should have been doing all along.

The result was a 22% increase in bicycle rates from the last count — in 2017.

And yes, they are just now releasing data collected that was collected two years ago, for reasons known only to them.

It also shows how easy it is to boost bicycling with a little decent infrastructure, with a 73% jump in ridership as a result of the protected and separated bike lanes on the MyFigueroa project.

MyFig also resulted the city’s most heavily-trafficked pedestrian corridor, even above the tourist-clogged sidewalks of Hollywood Blvd.

And it points to how Los Angeles can increase the far too low rate of women riding bikes on city streets.

While the report found that women make up 40 percent of pedestrians on weekdays and 44 percent on weekends, women made up just 14 percent of cyclists.  However, the report also indicated a 120 percent increase in female riders on streets improved with dedicated bike paths.

In other words, all they have to do is what the city already committed to in the 2010 bike plan, and the mobility plan that subsumed it.

Not to mention LA’s nearly forgotten Vision Zero and the mayor’s Green New Deal.

………

What the hell.

I’m not sure where this video is from; I can’t make out the the police patches or or the name on the patrol cars.

But something looks seriously wrong about a bunch of while cops taking a young black man into custody for the crime of…wait for it…

…riding a bicycle without lights or licenses.

In the middle of the day, no less.

And while some cities require bikes to be registered, I don’t know any place where police have the authority to seize private property over a handful of minor infractions.

Which would be illegal as hell if they tried to seize someone’s car for an expired license or failing to signal a turn.

Let alone not having their headlights on in broad daylight.

Unfortunately, there’s a term for crap like this — Biking While Black.

And regardless of their motivation, it makes the cops look racist AF.

Thanks to Jon, Megan Lynch and Stacey Kline for the heads-up. 

And if anyone knows where this happened, let me know so I’ll never make the mistake of going there.

Update: Thanks to Al Williams for identifying this as Perth Amboy, New Jersey. Which I will make a point of never visiting. 

………

If you live or ride in Beverly Hills, the city needs to hear from you at today’s city council meeting, where councilmembers will consider the city’s proposed Complete Streets plan.

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When is a bike lane not a bike lane?

When it’s free parking for a tire shop.

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

A Texas bike rider bike rider was hospitalized with a brain bleed and facial fractures when he was run down by a drunk driver — while riding on an ostensibly carfree bike path.

Singaporean actor Tay Ping Hui says he’s got nothing against bicyclists, despite complaining when a small group of riders merged onto the roadway ahead of him. Because apparently, it’s asking too much to slow down or change lanes to drive safely around them.

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

No bias here, either. A Singapore motorcyclist calls for banning bicycles from the roads after watching one — count ’em, one — scofflaw bicyclist weaving through traffic. Meanwhile, the website somehow feels the need to point out that 34 bike riders were ticketed for breaking the law over the weekend. Makes you wonder how many motorcyclists got tickets the same weekend. Let alone drivers. But sure, blame everyone on bicycles.

………

Local

LA Magazine highlights “cool” bike accessories to keep you riding in style. Too bad they forgot to feature that mirrored helmet in the main photo. Because who wouldn’t want to look like a human disco ball?

LA Taco takes a look at nine kinds of bad drivers you’ll meet on the streets of Los Angeles — and they include kids on scooters in that.

Keep an extra eye open if you’re riding the Arroyo Bike Path through Arroyo Seco Park, where a man walking on the pathway was shot several times by couple men who approached him around dusk Sunday evening.

A proposal for protected bike lanes on Pasadena’s North Lake Ave would keep 98% of the current parking on the street.

LA County Sheriff’s Deputies made a spectacular rescue of a mountain biker who went off the side of the road on Mt. Wilson; the victim was hanging head-first over a sheer cliff, clinging to the rock face like a cat, suspended by a thin cord around his ankle.

Former Lakers star Kobe Bryant was one of us, starting his bike rides at 4:30 am and not coming home until the sun was at its peak.

 

State

A bill currently under consideration in the state legislature would increase the penalties for a fatal hit-and-run from 2 to 4 years to 3 to 6. It’s already been watered down from the original proposal, which would have doubled the penalties for hit-and-run that result in death or permanent serious injury.

Calbike wants your support for the proposed Safety Stop Bill, which would allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields. Which is exactly what many riders safely do right now. And far too many drivers do unsafely.

AB117, the bill that would create a $10 million fund to help lower income Californians buy ebikes, passed its first test in the Assembly Transportation Committee.

Meanwhile, AB 43 unanimously passed the Assembly Transportation Committee with no opposition; the bill would retain the deadly 85th Percentile Law, but allow cities to consider factors other than drivers’ right feet in setting speed limits, such as the location as well as pedestrian and bicycle safety.

California is joining a nationwide movement to prioritize safety over speed. The question is whether the shift is real, or if the legislature will simply pass a few feel good bills before forgetting all about it and moving on to other matters, as too often happens.

Credit old school police work. Riverside police finally busted the hit-and-run driver who killed 52-year old Brian Sabel two years ago, arresting 34-year old Menifee resident Steven Allen Watson Jr. for the crime, despite the apparent lack of any witnesses or evidence at the time of the crash.

Bay Area bike riders may want to ride with a partner or group around Grizzly Peak Boulevard in the hills above Berkeley, where a number of solo riders have been robbed by armed bike jackers; at least five riders have been run off the road and robbed at gunpoint or knifepoint since late March.

A San Francisco ER physician calls for keeping the city’s Safe Streets, saying they’ve helped empty his emergency room.

A San Francisco woman celebrates seven years of living carfree after switching to an ebike when her car was totaled by an uninsured driver; she claims she’s saved over $50,000 over that period.

 

National

Of course she gets it. Former New York DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan teams with her Streetfight co-auther to call for cities to hold onto the street space reclaimed for people during the pandemic, saying surrendering our cities to cars would be a historic blunder.

My hometown university has now joined the Vision Zero club. Which isn’t too surprising, considering it’s surrounded by one of the nation’s most bike-friendly communities. Even though it didn’t get that way until long after I left, of course.

Apparently writing with all seriousness, a New Hampshire medical worker and self-described cyclist says he worked with a state legislator on a bill that would require bicyclists to ride salmon, but the bill died when he couldn’t get time off work to attend the hearing. Because evidently, riding a bike in New Hampshire just isn’t dangerous enough already.

A Massachusetts man got his fat tire bike back two months after it was stolen, when he recognized it being ridden by a burglary suspect on a TV news story about a break-in.

The Big Apple is getting a belated start on the micromobility revolution, as the city finally gets its first e-scooters.

 

International

In a story that’s scary as hell, a writer for Bike Radar examines whether lane-keeping technology poses a risk to bike riders, after he had to wrestle a car for control to avoid running down a bike rider sharing the same lane.

T3 considers what you get with a high-end road bike that you don’t with a cheap one. Or put another way, is an expensive bike really worth 20 times more than a low-end bike?

A pair of Vancouver business owners are taking their case to the British Columbia Supreme Court to fight the re-installation of a protected bike lane through a park, arguing the decision to swap a traffic lane for a bikeway wasn’t “reasonable, rational or logical.” Seriously. It’s in a park.

There’s a special place in hell for the jerk who stole an ebike from a disabled 13-year old English girl.

A pregnant British driver will spend the next 30 months behind bars for killing an 80-year old triathlete while chatting with her sister on WhatsApp; no word on whether her baby will spend the first years of its life in prison with her.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a 26-year old driver got a lousy 35 months in jail for intentionally running down a 13-year old boy riding his bike after getting into an argument with the kid in a park, and following him for 20 minutes before using his car as a weapon to attack him.

Scottish cyclist Josh Quigley is on his second day of a world record attempt for the greatest distance ridden on a bicycle in a single week, attempting to ride 320 miles a day in an 80-mile loop through the Scottish countryside; he’s aiming for Aussie pro Jack Thompson’s record of 2,177 miles, despite suffering multiple broken bones in a crash three months ago.

France is now allowing drivers to trade their old, smog-belching cars for a nearly $3,000 grant to buy a new ebike.

Last year was even a bad year for bike riders in the Netherlands, with the highest number of bicycling deaths in the past 25 years.

This is who we share the road with. A Kiwi driver is filmed blissfully driving on the right side of the road — which is the wrong side Down Under adjacent — until confronted head-on by a large truck. If your first thought was that it was probably just an American tourist confused about what side to drive on, join the club.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutch legend Marianne Vos outsprinted the competition to win the one-day Amstel Gold Race on Sunday; Belgian Wout van Aert took the men’s race by a nose in a photo finish.

More proof cycling hasn’t kicked its doping habit yet, after 52-year old California masters racer Vahe Aivazian was banned for four years for testing positive for not one, not two, but ten different banned drugs. But the era of doping is over, right?

 

Finally…

That feeling when your personal traffic bypass bridge turns out to be a pedestrian walkway. That feeling when you’re an elected official with no idea what Bicycle Day is all about.

And who needs to pick a bike lock when you can just blow it up with a hand grenade?

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

US traffic deaths up despite — or because of — coronavirus, LA’s last lonely Jump Bike, and NC ballot deadline tomorrow

If you thought the streets were more dangerous last year, you’re right.

According to an estimate from the nonprofit National Safety Council, traffic fatalities jumped 8% across the US last year.

Around 42,060 people lost their lives, an increase of more that 3,200 people who didn’t make it home to their loved ones, despite a decrease in overall miles traveled due to the pandemic.

Last year’s deaths were the most since 2007 when 43,945 people were killed in vehicle crashes. In addition, the safety council estimates that 4.8 million people were injured in crashes last year.

Federal data shows that Americans drove 13% fewer miles last year, or roughly 2.8 trillion miles, said Ken Kolosh, the safety council’s manager of statistics. Yet the number of deaths rose at an alarming rate, he said.

But all those empty streets just left room for dangerous speeding and aggressive drivers to do their worst.

And even though traffic is now getting close to pre-coronavirus levels, the bad behavior on the roads is continuing, authorities say.

“It’s kind of terrifying what were seeing on our roads,” said Michael Hanson, director of the Minnesota Public Safety Department’s Office of Traffic Safety. “We’re seeing a huge increase in the amount of risk-taking behavior.”

This estimate should serve as a wakeup call to cities and states around the US that merely paying lip service to Vision Zero isn’t enough.

And yes, that includes Los Angeles, where virtually nothing has been done to implement the program since it was announced with great fanfare in 2015.

We’ve already badly missed the initial benchmark to reduce traffic fatalities 20% by 2017. And we will inevitably miss the mayor’s promise to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.

As if.

The simple fact is, people will continue to die on the streets in Los Angeles, and throughout the US, until we finally decide that one more death is just one too many.

And that innocent blood on the street is too high a price to pay for the simple act of getting from here to there.

Then do something about it.

Photo of LA’s last Jump Bike by David Drexler.

………

David Drexler finds the last, lonely Jump bike on LA’s Westside, still leaning against a lamppost on the south side of Westchester Parkway across from LAX.

He notes that the police and city must think it still belongs to the defunct Jump, and that apparently no one in LA thinks it’s worth stealing.

The popular red bikes were taken off the streets when Uber gave up on the dockless ebikes after mismanaging them into the ground.

………

Streets For All sends word that tomorrow is the last day to request a mail-in ballot for the following neighborhood council races.

This Tuesday is the final day to request a mail-in ballot for neighborhood council elections in Region 5. These regions include: Central Hollywood, East Hollywood, Greater Wilshire, Hollywood Hills West, Mid City West and P.I.C.O.

Speaking of neighborhood councils, Streets For All adds their endorsements for the Central Hollywood NC to those announced for other areas last week.

And if you live, work, attend school or shop in the Mid City West area of LA, the area’s neighborhood council will consider the proposed Venice Blvd For All Complete Streets project at today’s virtual meeting; you can comment during the meeting, or send your comments in advance by email.

………

Once again, Bike Index’ free bicycle registration and stolen bike database proves that sometimes you get a lot more than you pay for — this time with the assistance of the LAPD.

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Hopefully California will be next.

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Start your Monday with an eight minute snowy stunt biking break.

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

Which includes the seemingly intractable battle between bike riders and equestrians, as a horse group in the UK accuses bike riders of going too fast and being abusive to man and beast alike.

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

A bike-riding man faces a murder charge for shooting a Milwaukee driver to death in a road rage dispute, which began when the bike rider punched the man for complaining that he had to swerve to avoid the salmon cyclist.

It takes a major schmuck to deliberately kick a five-year old kid off his bicycle in a New York park.

Unbelievable. A Belgian court fined a bike rider the equivalent a lousy $1.19 for intentionally kneeing a little girl as he passed on a snowy trail, in an attack that caused well-deserved outrage around the world.

………

Local

LAist wants to introduce you to David McNeill, the man behind the newly completed 13-mile Park to Playa Trail.

Culver City-based Walk N Rollers is raising funds for a volunteer bike repair hub for kids in need; so far, they’ve raised just under $1,000 of the $10,000 goal.

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin is one of us, taking a scenic ride through the ‘Bu on his Rocky Mountain mountain bike.

 

State

A half dozen “sculptural” bike racks were installed in Oildale, Bakersfield’s neglected neighbor and birthplace of the late, great Merle Haggard, with designs ranging from a coffee cup and electric guitar, to a figure of a racing cyclist and a whimsically-shaped man on a bike.

Streetsblog SF says it’s time to stop painting bike lanes with green paint that wears off, and starting paving them with colored asphalt like the Dutch.

Wheelie-popping teens celebrate the Bike Life every day by riding around the old Santa Rosa courthouse.

One positive to come out of 2018’s Carr Fire is a new and improved 10 Bridges Trail, which was reduced to a one bridge trail after the fire took out the other nine bridges; Redding bicyclists are already riding it, even though the official completion is still months away.

 

National

Don’t hold your breath about getting the ‘bent parts you need anytime soon. Unless you’re standing near me and not wearing a mask, that is, in which case, by all means, hold it until I leave or you pass out, whichever comes first. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Ebike prices are on their way up, thanks to the expiration of a tariff exemption, as well as bikemakers phasing out promotional pricing.

Las Vegas police bust an alleged drunken hit-and-run driver shortly after the rear-end crash that took the life of a 60-year old bike rider.

This is who we share the road with. A Milwaukee man pled guilty to a hit-and-run crash that killed two young sisters and injured their ten year old cousin, after speeding down a bike lane past cars other drivers stopped at a red light as the girls crossed in a crosswalk. He’ll be sentenced later this year.

A candidate for Manhattan DA calls for treating traffic violence like the epidemic it is.

A Miami cop speeding with red lights and siren killed a bicyclist riding with a group of cyclists last month, yet over a week later, no information has been released.

 

International

Road.cc recommends the tools you should have on hand for basic bike repairs.

Cyclist is celebrating Women’s History Month by highlighting a full month of inspirational women in the bike world.

Scotland signs on to a national Vision Zero plan, pledging to eliminate traffic deaths by 2050. And LA will probably still be struggling to meet their 2025 pledge.

Bicycles become a tool of protest as the head of an Indian political party leads a ride in support of fellow politician targeted by a government vendetta.

A Kenyan website talks with the founder of a Nairobi bike club about riding safely in the country.

That’s one way to do it. A new study shows a reduction in Japanese bike and pedestrian injuries when it snows — because people switch to warmer modes of transport.

A Specialized vice president tells the company’s Asian suppliers to step-up production, insisting there’s millions of dollars to be made once the Covid-19 pandemic is finally over.

Who needs drive-in restaurants when you can ride up to the bike-rack tables at a Manila restaurant and dine on your saddle?

 

Competitive Cycling

Irish pro Sam Bennet apparently finds taking the first stage of Paris-Nice nice, but Aussie pro Richie Porte didn’t make it to the finish line.

No surprise here, as Dutch ‘cross meister Mathieu van der Poel out-sprinted notable roadies to win on the gravel roads of the should be-Monument Strade Bianche.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to ride off with an $11,000 bike, turn off the damn GPS first. That feeling when your delivery ebike goes up in spontaneous flames.

And that feeling when you discover the rusted, jerry-rigged bicycle you’re working on once belonged to Mohandas K. Gandhi.

Yes, that Gandhi.

………

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

LACBC and Streets for All virtual holiday events, big jump in distracted driving, and bust made in Venice bike theft death

Welcome to Week Two of the 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to John C for his generous donation to help keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming to your favorite screen every morning! 

If you haven’t already, take a few minutes right now to join him in supporting this site!

Seriously, don’t make me beg.

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The LACBC will host their free virtual holiday party and potluck this Thursday.

You can register for the event and purchase raffle tickets here.

Meanwhile, Streets for All will host a virtual happy hour this Wednesday to chat with Hayes Davenport, host of the LA Podcast and an advisor to new LA Councilmember Nithya Raman.

He also has the perfect old Hollywood name right out of Central Casting.

………

No surprise here, as Streetsblog announces distracted driving has skyrocketed during the pandemic.

Something anyone who’s spent much time riding or walking the streets can attest to.

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Culver City 311 announces that police have apparently re-arrested the bike thief who killed a 73-year old man while trying to wrestle his bicycle from his grasp; the victim died when he fell and hit his head hit the pavement.

Let’s hope his killer faces the murder charge he so richly deserves.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the heads-up.

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The Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council is looking for a few good men or women; we need to get more bike and pedestrian advocates on the council so we can finally see some positive changes around here.

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In a special shoutout to former pro Phil Gaimon, here’s the LA Times’ tips for making the best holiday cookies.

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

A Montana man pled guilty to booby trapping a popular forrest trail with a nail-spiked board hidden under debris to discourage mountain bikers from using the trail; instead it seriously injured a father walking with his kids.

An Aussie man admits outside court that his idiotic stunt of pushing a shopping cart into a pack of bicyclists riding at speed after a 12-hour bender could have gotten someone killed.

Gee, ya think?

………

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Local

Angelenos are once again being told to stay home to avoid spreading the coronavirus; the order specifically prohibits travel by “foot, bicycle, scooter, motorcycle, car or public transit,” though there are countless exceptions, and debate over whether they really mean it.

 

State

Bad news from the Central Coast, where a bike rider was killed in a collision with a driver on the 101 Freeway in Arroyo Grande. Naturally, initial reports blamed the victim.

San Luis Obispo’s new active transportation plan commits to completing 100% of the city’s 52 highest priority bike and pedestrian projects within the next ten years — even though 93.5% of the projects are still outstanding. As Los Angeles bike riders can attest, though, a promise like that is only as good as the city’s willingness to live up to it.

More bad news from Tracy, where a 73-year old man was killed in a collision while riding his bike; police immediately blamed the victim for wearing dark clothes and riding without lights after dark, as well as not using a crosswalk to cross the roadway — even though bicyclists aren’t required or even expected to.

Still more bad news, this time from Lake County, where another 73-year old man was killed by a hit-and-run driver as he was riding his bike; the CHP caught the driver several hours later after she abandoned her car at a nearby hotel.

 

National

Gear Junkie looks at the best fat bikes for the coming year.

America’s last remaining Tour de France winner is back in the bike business with a new line of ebikes.

Police in Lincoln NE busted three men, including a 16-year old boy, accused of getting out of their car to mug a 69-year old bike rider and steal his belongings.

Wisconsin’s only Black-owned book store is currently doing business on the back of a big blue tricycle. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you out.

Sad news from Philadelphia, where a local community is mourning the death of a long-time neighborhood bike cop from Covid-19.

Life is cheap in Louisiana, where a man got two years home detention for fleeing the scene after slamming his SUV into two kids sharing a bike; fortunately, both recovered after suffering serious injuries.

Florida has completed a study for a bike trail along the state’s coast highway south of Jacksonville where retired ABC News correspondent Tim O’Brien was killed while riding his bike, but it hasn’t been funded.

 

International

Road.cc offers a holiday gift guide for awkward cycling fans, most of which is surprisingly affordable.

Cycling News turns the tables on yesterday’s men’s gift guide for bicyclists with a guide for bike-riding women. Because evidently, men don’t use bike tires or CO2 inflators.

An Ontario, Canada woman reached out to other female mountain bike riders three years ago to form a new group; she now has a network of over 100 active riders.

A Toronto letter writer complains that the city spend $240,000 to build, then remove, a protected bike lane, and concludes that building bike lanes that will be used just “four or five months out of the year” is insanity. Who knew Canadians are that afraid of a little cold weather?

Over 300 Montreal residents complained about bike paths and pedestrian streets that popped up in the city during the pandemic. Which means the other roughly 4,220,700 people in the metro area didn’t.

A British writer takes a 1,307-mile bikepacking trip across the entire length of the UK. Which may be the only place Brits can go once Brexit kicks in at the end of the year.

A Hungarian man is all smiles after riding over 8,000 miles from Hungary to India, despite four weeks in a Pakistani jail when he tried to cross the border.

 

Competitive Cycling

Mountain bike downhill legend Rachel Atherton welcomes the pandemic bike boom, saying everyone has finally discovered what she already knew about bikes.

Eleven of the biggest names in women’s cycling are calling it a career, including American Katie Hall.

Cycling scion Axel Merckx, who ought to know, warns today’s top young cyclists not to burn out too early.

 

Finally…

Don’t ride your ebike like a motorcycle. Who needs the power company when you’ve got a bicycle?

And introducing a thousand dollar full carbon balance bike for the weight weenie toddler in your life.

No, seriously.

Photo from Specialized’s website.

………

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

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