Tag Archive for West Hollywood

Why LA fails the transit density test, new Metro K-Line bike lockers, and West Hollywood to give free bikes to residents

It’s the 7th day of the 8th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive

There’s never been a charge to visit this site. No subscription fees, no paywall. Anyone and everyone is welcome, at any time, for any reason. 

This is the only time of year we ask you to contribute what you can to help keep it that way. 

So ask yourself, what this site is worth to you? Then take a moment right now, and donate via PayPal or Zelle.

And thanks to Paul F, Johannes H, The Muirs, Audrey K and Anonymous for their generous support to keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

Give today!

………

A new Brookings Institute report says creating urban activity centers combining “community institutions, tourism destinations, consumption amenities, major institutions, and jobs in traded sectors” are key to green commutes.

Which helps explain why Los Angeles ranks so low in transit use, despite its high density, since those activity centers are so widely dispersed, and lack many of the key components.

Thanks to Gordon Chaffin for the heads-up.

………

Metro reports bike lockers are now available at five K Line stations, on what was formerly known as the Crenshaw Line.

The lockers can now be found at —

  • Expo/Crenshaw
  • MLK Jr.
  • Leimart Park
  • Fairview Heights
  • Downtown Inglewood

………

West Hollywood is partnering with Schwinn to give away 50 free bicycles to WeHo residents in an effort to reduce car dependency.

You have to be over 18, and commit to riding at least 20 miles a month.

Although that really should be 20 miles a week, but still.

You can apply for the program here.

………

The last CicLAvia of the year rolls through historic South LA this Sunday, with an early 3 pm cutoff.

The latest weather forecast calls for showers ending late morning, leading to a cool and sunny afternoon.

So bundle up, and get out there for one last carfree celebration before the holidays.

………

This is who we share the road with.

Police in San Luis Obispo responded to a report of a driver striking a curb before hitting a street sign and crashing into a bridge abutment.

When the driver failed to show signs of intoxication, they just wrote it off as an oopsie, and had the car towed.

And somehow missed the couple lying dead in a creak bed, along with their dog, hidden under thick brush.

It wasn’t until their bodies were found the next day that police realized the speeding driver had slammed into them as they were walking their dog.

Which led police to go back and “interview” the 24-year old driver.

Not interrogate. Not arrest. Not even ticket.

At least, not yet. And maybe never.

Thanks to How the West Was Saved for the link.

………

Nothing like watching someone use bolt cutters to steal a bike in broad daylight.

 

………

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

No bias here. A New York judge pointed a finger at the city’s “problem” with ebikes and motorized bicycles, as he sentenced a man to one to three years behind bars for killing Gone Girl and Broadway actor Lisa Banes as she was crossing the street — even though the careless, red light-running rider was on an e-scooter.

No bias here, either. A New York writer suggests combating the scourge of ebikes by picking up your takeout in person, claiming speeding ebike riders have made jaywalking a blood sport.

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

Police in Oxnard CA are on the lookout for a bike-riding bank robber who made his escape on two wheels after ripping off a Wells Fargo.

……..

………

Local 

Urbanize LA offers more details on the $5.1 in Westside transportation improvements approved by the city council this week, in one of outgoing CD11 Councilmember Mike Bonin’s final acts on the council.

 

State 

Palo Alto is considering a ban on ebikes on unpaved trails in local nature preserves, apparently concluding that only strong, able-bodied people who don’t need a ped-assist should visit them.

A San Francisco op-ed says Slow Streets helped bring the city’s Noe Valley community together, and the city needs more of them.

Police in Rancho Cordova arrested a 42-year old homeless man in the apparent unprovoked attack with a machete on a 60-year old, recently retired ebike rider, whose injuries were described as “unsurvivable.”

 

National

Streetsblog looks at where bikes scored big in the recent election.

A podcast from Outside looks at what happens to drivers who hit bicyclists. Short answer: Not much, in most cases.

More harm caused by motor vehicles, as researchers blame rubber particulates from car tires for a massive die-off of coho salmon in the Pacific Northwest.

The head man at the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas is one of us, using a bicycle to get around the massive event.

Axios says Transportation Secretary Pete is big on bikes, as he stops in Chicago to promote aviation workers.

A furious Chicago father demands safe routes to schools after drivers hit his bike-riding daughter, not once but twice. Although he seems a lot calmer than I would have been under the circumstances.

That’s more like it. An Ohio man was sentenced to eight to twelve years behind bars for the drugged, head-on crash that killed a man riding a bicycle; he also lost his driver’s license for life and prohibited from buying or owning a motor vehicle.

Massachusetts Hyundai dealers honored Springfield’s Bob the Bike Man for his efforts to get more kids on bicycles despite suffering from a terminal brain condition.

Life is cheap in New York, where a cab driver walked with just a lousy one-year license suspension after his passenger fatally doored a bike rider when he failed to pull up to the curb to let them out.

Baltimore residents and business owners sound a familiar refrain, claiming they weren’t told about plans for a lane reduction and protected bike lanes, even though they’d been in the works for years.

Life is cheap in Louisiana, where a 29-year old woman walked without a day behind bars for killing a man riding a bicycle, after a judge suspended her entire five-year sentence.

 

International

No surprise here, as a new study shows protected bike lane networks have “significant potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, lower transport costs, prevent road fatalities, and improve the quality of life for people” around the world, concluding that bike lanes “reduce emissions as effectively as highways create them.”

Cyclist offers tips on how to keep your bike from squeaking and creaking. Although a well-lubed bike won’t do anything to keep you from doing creaking.

Cycling Weekly recommends the best holiday sales on bikes and bicycle gear in the US and the UK.

The UK’s leading bike-building school is permanently shuttering its doors, battered by Covid, Brexit and unrelenting financial challenges.

Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson departed office with a number of gifts — included a secondhand, $4,800 bike from the president of Kurdistan.

The new SUB from Vienna-based Vello claims to be the world’s lightest e-cargo bike, checking in at a svelte 53 pounds for the titanium version.

Bicycling says Budapest residents are pedaling to power the city’s Christmas tree, which was jeopardized by the ongoing energy crisis caused by the war in Ukraine. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

More proof bicyclists face the same problems everywhere, as bike riders in Dwarka, India demand better bike infrastructure, arguing there’s currently nothing to protect them.

NPR reports more Afghans are using bikes to get around as the economy continues to decline following the Taliban’s takeover of the country, even though women and girls are now prohibited from riding, even if they had before.

An Israeli study shows 70% of ebike and e-scooter users who suffered facial injuries weren’t wearing helmets.

An Italian ultracyclist is attempting to bike across the bottom of the world, setting off on a record-setting effort to fat bike across Antarctica.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tragic news from Italy, where former Amstel Gold Race, La Fleche Wallonne, Liège-Bastogne-Liège and Paris-Nice champ Davide Rebellin was killed when he was hit by a truck on a training ride; the Italian cyclist was still competing at age 51, despite a two-year doping ban that cost him an Olympic silver medal.

The Tour de France will depart from its traditional Paris finish for the first time in 2024, looking for a nice finish in Nice, instead.

Trans cyclist Emily Bridges says she still dreams of riding for Wales at the Commonwealth Games, even after the UK barred new trans cyclists from competition pending a review scheduled for next year.

 

Finally…

Charles Barkley is five grand poorer after losing a bet that he could ride a kid’s bike, even though Shaq could. San Diegans name their cute little street sweeper.

And look ma, no hands.

Or feet, for that matter.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

 

WeHo approves Fountain protected bike lanes, debate over cyclist semantics, and running over bikes in bike-friendly Davis

Just two more days to one of the biggest, most momentous days of the year!

No, not Black Friday. It’s the official start of the 8th Annual BikinginLA holiday fund drive!

We’ll be off tomorrow, so have a great Thanksgiving, whether you spend it with loved ones or alone on your bike. And find something to be thankful for. 

Besides, you know, this site. 

Then come back on Friday to witness me beg, plead, cajole and grovel for your support.  

And stay safe out there. I want to see you back here again when the weekend is over. 

………

In a surprising decision, the West Hollywood City Council voted unanimously to install a pilot protected bike lane project on Fountain Ave, overcoming fierce opposition to the proposal.

Mayor Lauren Meister summed up her reason for voting yes, even though city staffers haven’t explained where the cars displaced from parking on the apartment-dense street are supposed to go.

“My goal is to make Fountain just safer, period — for pedestrians, making the sidewalks wider and and making it so that cars aren’t speeding through and going over the curves and actually going into people’s yards,” Meister said.

The proposal, which became a key issue in the city’s recent election campaign, would require the removal of a traffic lane in each direction, as well as reconstructing sidewalks along the street, which are not ADA compliant.

The street currently features some of the area’s most uncomfortable sharrows, which are seldom used by anyone but the most confident bicyclists in the face of frequently speeding traffic.

The unanimous approval bodes well for the pilot program withstanding efforts to overturn it when two new, more moderate, councilmembers take their seats in the coming weeks.

………

A lengthy Twitter thread revives the debate over the word cyclist.

It’s something I try not to use, as you may have noticed, preferring bike riders, bicyclists or people on bicycles.

But only because so many people read into to it far more than the word actually conveys, which is merely someone who rides a bicycle.

To some, it means bike racers; to others, it’s anyone who wears spandex. And to others still, it refers to people on fixies, or some other bike world niche.

Then there are people don’t like the word because they feel it labels them in some way, when riding a bike is just something they do, rather than something they are.

I can see all of that, and none of it.

The simple fact is we are all cyclists when we ride a bike, and not once we get off. Just as someone is a driver when they’re behind the wheel, and a pedestrian when they get out; no one calls them drivers when they’re home or in the office.

So go ahead and use the word if you’re comfortable with it, or don’t if you aren’t.

Thanks to Tim Rutt for the link.

………

Streets For All is hosting a fundraising holiday party next month.

………

A Davis motorist drove through a line of picketing teaching assistants striking for higher pay and better conditions on UC campuses, driving off with a bicycle still stuck under their car.

Cops off Campus everyone. Good Lovely people!! from UCDavis

But to UC Davis grad student Megan Lynch, it’s yet another example of why the city isn’t the bike paradise its made out to be.

………

Now you, too, can drive an even faster and more powerful high-end e-car, for the low, low price of a hundred bucks a month.

Yet somehow, your ebike remains capped by law at 20 or 28 mph, depending on class.

Thanks to How The West Was Saved for the heads-up.

………

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

Oxford, England makes an extremely wrongheaded choice to remove bike racks to make rood for a Christmas market, apparently assuming that no one would want to avoid traffic by biking there.

No bias here. Britain’s “eco-warrior” bike riders are facing threats from motorists, both online and on the streets.

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

An English woman in her 80s was seriously injured when she was struck by an apparent self-riding hit-and-run bicycle, since there’s no mention of anyone on it.

There’s a special place in hell for the bike-riding man who assaulted an elderly walker-using woman in the UK, stealing her purse containing the equivalent of nearly $1,200 in cash.

………

Local 

Politico says Councilmember Kevin de León is still standing, despite repeated demands for him to resign in the wake of a racist and otherwise offensive recording; he continues to draw his $218,000 salary despite not showing up to work since the outcry began.

SAFE, aka Streets Are For Everyone, wants to know what street safety campaigns and advocacy efforts are important to you.

About damn time. The Hollywood Reporter says it’s time to reopen the case in the 12-year old murder of Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen, which was bizarrely pinned on a destitute, bike-riding Black man who allegedly killed himself as police attempted to take him into custody in a Hollywood flophouse; Beverly Hills police accused Harold Smith of shooting Chasen as she drove home from a premier.

South LA received a $60 million grant to fund bikeshare, and provide free Metro passes for students.

 

State 

The San Diego Association of Governments, aka SANDAG, wants to give you a ped-assist ebike in exchange for a commitment to ride a minimum of 100 miles a month. Or as I used to call that back when I could still do it, Tuesday.

A San Diego resident who “has spent a lot of time, energy and thought on transportation issues” apparently attempts to prove singer Harry Nilsson’s contention that a point in every direction is the same as no point at all, confusingly complaining about the cost and lack of use of expensive bikeway projects, while pointing out the limited safety of some and the lack of an effective network to make them viable.

Completing our San Diego trifecta, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition and Families for Safe Streets held a vigil for traffic victims, as the city’s mayor promised to prioritize safety over speed.

San Francisco proposes making a number of the city’s Slow Streets permanent.

 

National

Streetsblog wants to know why there are so many memorials to the victims of wars, but not for the ongoing battle on our streets.

Electrek insists that switching to an ebike means getting more exercise, not less.

Portland’s ebike-based bikeshare system set a new record with over half a million users this year, topping the previous record by more than 100,000.

Heartbreaking news from Arizona, where a four-year old boy was killed by a driver while riding his bike just blocks from his home — and on a street with just a 10 mph speed limit.

This one hits a little too close to home, as an ebike rider in my bike-friendly Colorado hometown was seriously injured when he was left-crossed by the driver of an SUV — on the street that I grew up on, no less, just blocks from my childhood home.

That’s more like it. New York’s transportation commissioner says the city is moving towards a carfree future, and suggests thinking twice before getting a car.

A newspaper in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley examines why the area is a mecca for bicyclists.

DC is facing a lawsuit under the Americans With Disabilities Act, as two handicapped women allege that new protected bike lanes make it harder for them to find parking and safely exit their vehicles. Thanks to Victor Bale for the tip. 

Speaking of DC, probably not the best idea for the newly elected head of a neighborhood commission to give the finger to bike lane opponents. Even if most of us may want to at times.

It takes a major schmuck to slam into a bike-riding, 12-year old Florida boy and flee the scene without even slowing down, leaving the kid lying in the street with serious injuries. There’s video of the crash after the link, but be warned that it’s hard to watch.

 

International

Treehugger offers a beginners tutorial on Vision Zero, which oddly only works when cities actually do something about it.

Montreal bike riders respond to a driver parking in a bike lane for “just two minutes” to get his lunch, by parking their bikes in the traffic lane for the same amount of time.

Now you, too, can work in the bike industry, as CEO of British Cycling, the country’s governing body for bike racing and all things bike.

A woman in the UK explains what it’s like to get hit by a speeding SUV, and why so many drivers, like the one who ran her down, don’t stop after a crash.

Tokyo allowed participants in a charity ride to ride their bikes on the city’s iconic Rainbow Bridge for the first time since it opened 29 years ago.

 

Competitive Cycling

It’s looking like the 2024 Tour de France will kick off in Italy, home to the Giro d’Italia.

No surprise here, as the primary goal of two-time Tour de France winner Tadej Pogačar is winning it a third time, after this year’s second place finish.

 

Finally…

That feeling when your carbon frame bike is covered almost entirely in 24 karat gold. Or when beef-eating bicyclists are accused of being worse for the climate than cars.

And bemoaning blatant Belfast bike lane blocking.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Bass elected LA mayor, catch and release in sheriff’s cadet crash, and WeHo considers Fountain bike lanes Monday

Congratulations to Congresswoman Karen Bass on being elected as LA’s new mayor.

The first woman to hold the post, and only the second Black Angeleno, Bass defeated billionaire mall developer Rick Caruso, despite being outspent 11 to 1 as he dropped well over $100 million on his own campaign.

The question for us is whether the new mayor’s professed focus on homelessness, crime and housing authority will preclude desperately needed efforts to transform our streets to improve safety and get Angelenos out of their cars.

Let’s hope Streets For All and BikeLA, formerly the LACBC, are already in contact with her office to set up a meeting.

Because after years of neglect under outgoing Mayor Eric Garcetti, and successful efforts by various councilmembers to block progress in their districts, we don’t have any time to waste.

Meanwhile, Streetblog’s Joe Linton calls the recent election good news for livability and transportation, with the possible exception of CD11’s Tracy Park, who instantly becomes the most conservative member of the city council.

Park has professed support for multimodal transportation, yet drew much of her supporters from Westside NIMBYs who’ve fought bus and bike improvements.

………

He was arrested for attempted murder.

Until he wasn’t.

Just one day after a wrong-way driver slammed into a phalanx of sheriff’s cadets, injuring 25 people, including five critically — and after reportedly turning the investigation over the the CHP — the LA Country Sheriff’s Department announced that Nicholas Joseph Gutierrez had been arrested on a charge of attempted murder on a peace officer.

Then turned around and announced he had been released without charges due to a lack of evidence.

No, really.

The premature arrest indicated the belief of investigators that Gutierrez had intentionally steered into the recruits, accelerating at he plowed through them, as we had surmised yesterday.

The only problem is a lack of evidence confirming intent. Outgoing Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva stressed that the release is provisional, pending collection of more evidence confirming his actions were intentional.

Why they jumped the gun and arrested Gutierrez on a presumption of guilt, rather than basing the arrest on actual evidence, is an open question at this time.

As is why they have apparently reclaimed the investigation from the CHP, after relinquishing it just one day earlier.

But with Villanueva leaving in a couple of weeks, its likely to become incoming sheriff-elect Robert Luna’s problem.

………

West Hollywood is scheduled to consider whether to add protected bike lanes on deadk=ly Fountain Ave at Monday’s council meeting, which would require a reduction to one lane in each direction as well as removing parking spaces; refer to agenda item 4.B.

The lanes would provide a safer east-west alternative to dangerous Santa Monica Blvd, after the existing painted bike lanes on Santa Monica end east of La Cienega.

However, it would also require the removal of at least 150 parking spaces; an alternative plan for painted bike lanes would require removing up to 40 spaces.

Which means opponents are likely to come out in force in an effort to block it.

Meanwhile, WeHo Mayor Lauren Meister is on track for re-election, while former Councilmember John Heilman enjoys a 246 vote lead over Chelsea Wright for the second and third spots; the top three finishers will be seated on the city council.

Former Councilmember John Duran, who made cancelling the bike lanes the centerpiece of his campaign, is currently languishing out of the running in fifth place.

However, with the exception of Meister, who is already on the council, they won’t be seated in time to effect Monday’s decision on Fountain.

………

This puts the problem of LA drivers in perspective.

………

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

Police in Youngstown, Ohio are looking for a bike rider seen on video near the site of three stolen catalytic converters.

Police now believe the fatal shooting of a 21-year old Bronx basketball player by a man riding an ebike was a case of mistaken identity. Which somehow doesn’t seem to make it any better.

………

Local

The newly rebranded BikeLA is hosting a class on the Essentials of Group Riding this evening, and a South LA Pan Dulce Ride on Sunday.

 

State 

A San Diego woman whose husband was killed by a wrong-way driver while riding his bike to the movies calls on the city’s mayor to mark Sunday’s World Day of Remembrance for victims of traffic violence by doubling the budget for the city’s quick-build protected bike lane program, and lowering speed limits on the most dangerous Vision Zero corridors. Sounds reasonable to me.

Oxnard approved a $3 million plan for sidewalks and bike lanes in the city’s El Rio neighborhood.

Berkeley considers a proposal to offer its own instant ebike rebate program, which could be paired with the state’s ebike rebates, if they ever happen.

Bike co-op Rich City Rides is hosting a bike party and ride to celebrate the third anniversary of the protected bike lane on the Richmond San Rafael Bridge.

 

National

Damn good question. An updated edition of Jeff Speck’s book Walkable City asks why we don’t take traffic violence as seriously as terrorism, when you’re 568 times more likely to die in crash than at the hands of a terrorist.

The 22nd annual Cranksgiving bicycle food drive rolls in cities across the US tomorrow, including a return to downtown Los Angeles after a pandemic pause.

Portland bike advocates are suing the city under a 1971 state law that requires improving infrastructure for bicyclists and pedestrians any time a street is constructed, reconstructed or relocated. Unfortunately, California doesn’t have a similar law, although Los Angeles could if the Healthy Streets LA ballot proposition passes in 2024. 

An abandoned railroad trestle across a Corpus Christy, Texas bay could become a unique rail-to-trail conversion.

Remember this the next time someone tells you handicapped people can’t ride bikes, as a 70-year old Iowa man is using a recumbent bike to continue riding as he recovers from a debilitating stroke.

Jake and Elwood Blues would be thrilled to know Joliet, Illinois could soon be expanding on the city’s two — yes, 2 — existing bike lanes.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot tosses her security detail under the bus, blaming them for double-parking in a bike lane to get some donuts.

Curbed says don’t blame ebikes for the recent rash of New York battery fires; blame refurbished batteries and mismatched chargers.

Pennsylvania’s governor vetoed a bill that would have allowed curb and parking protected bike lanes in the state, after the legislature tacked on an unrelated provision to strip power from Philadelphia’s district attorney.

More than 1,300 people will ride to Congress tomorrow to demand safer streets, following the route a US diplomat was taking when she was killed by a truck driver while riding in a Bethesda, Maryland bike lane in August.

Seventy-one year old former astronaut Bill McArthur is one of us, one of 700 riders who recently completed a multi-day bike tour across South Carolina.

 

International

Bike Rumor recommends the best gifts for the wrench in your life.

Speaking of handicapped bike riders, a British Paralympian paralyzed from the waist down will attempt to become the first person to ride an adaptive bike across the Antarctic Plateau.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a 13-year old British boy’s bike from his mother’s car after she rushed with him to the hospital when he fell off and broke his collarbone.

A bike advocacy group is urging Amsterdam officials to set a 12 mph speed limit for ebikes on the city’s bike paths, as faster ebikes continue to gain in popularity.

 

Competitive Cycling

A 25-year old Anchorage woman has parlayed her love of bikepacking into a new role as a champion bikepacking endurance cyclist.

 

Finally…

Your next ebike could be a modern take on the classic Schwinn Stingray. Or maybe made from sustainable plywood. Everyone looks better on a lowrider bike.

And who needs a cargo bike when you can ride your bike with nine kids hanging on?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

No CA ebike rebates until next year, demand protected bike lanes on Fountain Ave, and Montebello bike master plan

Hope you weren’t counting on that California ebike rebate this year.

Calbike reports the program should launch sometime in 2023. Although we were told to expect it this year, too.

So maybe don’t hold your breath.

And the rebates, which are expected to be between $750 and $1,250 for a standard e-bike, and $1,500 or more for a cargo or adaptive bike, will be limited to Californians earning up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level.

Which is currently $18,755 for someone living alone, $25,268 for two people, and $38,295 for a family of four.

So I’m good, anyway.

………

You still have time to demand protected bike lanes on Fountain Ave, which is stirring up a lot of opposition among drivers in West Hollywood — and at least some of the city council candidates.

Okay, maybe request is a better word.

………

Montebello is presenting their new bike master plan at Wednesday’s city council meeting, which starts at 5 pm.

………

The Port of Los Angeles wants to give your group funding to help get people out of cars, presumably to offset the harm they cause to the environment.

Although it’s unclear whether it applies to organizations outside of Long Beach.

………

Santa Barbara officials will conduct a living experiment in what works, after removing green bike lanes separating bike riders from pedestrians on the city’s pedestrianized main street.

Meanwhile, a local newspaper complains about Complete Streets changes planned for the city’s streets, saying the original street grid laid out by a sea captain 170 years ago works just fine, dammit. And that no one can predict what changes will come in the coming years.

Sort of like bicycles, cars, trucks and SUVs did since 1850, which the  farsighted the captain must have planned for, evidently.

………

VanMoof meets Peter Max. Style-wise, anyway.

………

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

Mission Viejo city council candidates discuss ebike safety, with several going out of their way to demonstrate they aren’t familiar with California’s ebike regulations. Or bike law in general, for that matter.

Something is seriously wrong when a road raging Dublin, Ireland cabbie walks with a suspended sentence for deliberately brake checking, then crashing into a man on a bicycle, who wasn’t doing a damn thing wrong. As if anything could justify that, anyway.

In a brilliant display of windshield bias, a road raging Aussie tradesman gets out of his car and screams at a couple bicyclists for riding below the speed limit on a roundabout, apparently mistaking the maximum speed for cars with an imagined minimum speed for people on bicycles.

And nothing fits the category like a 37-second compilation of dooring’s greatest hits.

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

We Love Cycling lists 14 bicycling faux pas to avoid, including littering, wearing threadbare shorts, and spitting into the wind. Although the item about wearing your glasses outside over your helmet straps so they fly off in a crash is BS; unless you’re wearing cheap breakable lenses, you want them to stay on to protect your eyes.

………

Local

LACBC is hosting their annual LA Bike Fest fundraiser at The Bike Shed Moto Co. in the Arts District this Saturday afternoon. General admission starts at $100, or get in free by raising $250 in donations.

 

State 

San Diego bike advocates complain about plans for painted, door zone bike lanes through downtown La Jolla, saying it retains too much parking and little that would actually improve safety.

Maybe logic isn’t their strong suit. Three months after San Diego officials pledged to achieve carbon neutrality by 2035, they approved spending $22.5 million to widen the freeway through Carmel Valley, apparently concluding that massive highways don’t contribute to climate change.

The state has awarded the Coachella Valley Association of Governments over $36 million in active transportation funds to extend the CV Link bike and pedestrian path through the cities of La Quinta, Indio and Coachella; the completed pathway will run nearly 50 miles through the Coachella Valley.

A Modesto man was lucky to escape with a graze wound after he was shot by a man who then made off with his bicycle.

An op-ed from a pair of Santa Rosa advocates makes the case for reducing car traffic up to 25% by building protected bike lanes. Even a fraction of that would virtually eliminate congestion in Los Angeles.

UC grad student Megan Lynch has kept us informed about the lack of bike safety on the ostensibly bike-friendly UC Davis campus; she should be happy to learn the campus police with shift their focus to traffic safety after 22 crashes involving bikes or e-scooters so far this fall. Meanwhile, university police still haven’t released the results of their investigation into a 19-year old student killed in a collision by a campus employee five months ago.

 

National

The founder and CEO of EV truck maker Rivian says expects to see increasing reliance on ebikes in the years to come.

Good advice, as Cycling Savvy offers tips on how to maneuver your way out of a panic situation.

BestLife recommends the top ten US cities to visit on a bicycle, leading off with surprising choices in Spartanburg, South Carolina and Gulf Shores, Alabama. Although their #10 choice Seattle should move up soon, now that former LA Bureau of Streets Services head Greg Spotts is heading the city’s department of transportation.

Nearly 300 Arizona bicyclists turned out to honor a man who was killed by a 19-year old DUI driver as he rode down a local mountain five years ago; the woman who killed him was sentenced to three years earlier this month.

Awful news from Utah, where a five-year old boy was attacked by a husky while riding his bike to a friend’s home, requiring 2,000 to 3,000 stitches on his face and ear, as well as a skin graft; a crowdfunding page has raised over $11,000 of the $15,000 goal for his medical care.

An OKC paper says the city’s low bicycling death rate is deceptive, masking an unacceptably high rate of injuries.

After years of advocating for safer streets, a Cleveland bike shop owner was himself the victim of a hit-and-run; fortunately, he wasn’t seriously injured.

Joe Jonas is one of us, as he goes for a bikeshare ride in New York, sans his famous brothers.

New York Magazine recommends everything you need to go bikepacking, except a bike. Although that would seem to be kind of important, too.

Tragic news from Florida, where friends say they can’t understand why a kindhearted 49-year old man was murdered in a random attack with a tire iron, by a man who admitted the killing without showing any remorse.

A Florida sheriff called for prayers for a bike rider — and the deputy who killed him in what he termed an “unfortunate accident.”

 

International

A Winnipeg survey shows fewer people ride bikes compared to four years ago, but do it more often.

Maybe their moms were watching. A group of young men surrounded an English man on a bike and attempted to punch him before stealing his bicycle — then turned around and returned it ten minutes later. Because when a mom says “put that bike back,” you do. 

No good deed goes unpunished, as a British man was mugged and his bike stolen while he was helping a family of Ukrainian refugees find a new home.

The UK driver who absurdly claimed his infant son was using his phone when he killed a 42-year old man on a bike was convicted of causing death by dangerous driving, after the jury quickly rejected his argument.

A Dublin research scholar looks to realistic group conflict theory to explain why nearly everyone hates bicyclists.

Ireland is attempting to encourage families to replace cars and SUVs with cargo bikes by increasing the amount allowed under the country’s Bike to Work program to 3,000 euros, equivalent to roughly $2,950.

About time. Spain is eliminating longstanding impunity for drivers who kill; any crash resulting in death or serious injury will now be considered a criminal offense.

A cat rescued in the mountains between Bosnia and Montenegro has traveled through 18 countries, accompanying a Scottish man bicycling around the world.

Cape Town, South Africa’s bicycle mayor wants to boost bike commuting from a lowly one percent to eight percent by 2030. Los Angeles isn’t much higher, but we still don’t have a bicycle mayor — or a goal for boosting ridership.

After a second model from Hong Kong ebike maker Fiido started having problems with broken frames, the company responded with a new five-year extended warranty and a $10,000 guarantee against breakage under normal use. Although that last phrase can be bent a long damn way to avoid paying claims, if they want. 

An Aussie paper considers the push to replace second cars with ebikes.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews looks at the season-end cycling team directeur sportif merry-go-round.

Maybe pro cycling isn’t so green after all. Bicycling reports the recent five-day Tour of Luxembourg resulted in greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to around 226,000 miles in a passenger car, or nine trips around the world. Now imagine what it would be for one of the much larger and longer three-week Grand Tours. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

It’s a sad commentary when we have to turn to Wikipedia just to get the results of the Paracycling Worlds. Thanks to the aforementioned Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

 

Finally…

Why settle for a mere tandem, when you could have a three-seater, complete with a nifty fringed canopy. Now you, too, can electrify your very own velomobile.

And chances are, this is a book we can all relate to.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the link.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

WeHo merchant calls for licensing cyclists, racist Palo Alto road rage attack, and Hugo calls for carfree Hollywood Blvd

No bias here.

The owner of West Hollywood’s gay-forward novelty boutique Block Party says forget bike lanes and install EV chargers instead, while trotting out all the old cliches about licensing bike riders.

Fast forward to 2022, a debate about removing the parking lanes on Fountain and to install bike lanes in their place, eliminating two for cars to drive. Those bike lane people are ferocious in their arguments. If you had to drive a bike and cars whipped past you it might cause a sense of anger that you deserve a safe space too. But perhaps bike riders who choose to use the road should also be licensed. Maybe they should pass a written test to travel 40 miles down the road. Perhaps they can pay a license fee to help offset the cost of these installations. As a partially sighted part-time driver I can say that it is difficult to drive past the bikes who often show little respect for the road weaving in lanes. But that is another story.

Because apparently, our tax money doesn’t count — even though it pays for the roads he drives, whether we use them or not.

Never mind that studies have repeatedly shown that a licensing program for bicyclists would cost more than it would bring in, while dramatically reducing ridership exactly when we need more people on bikes. Or that bike riders pose a lot less risk to others than people in cars do.

Especially people with bad eyesight.

Besides, are you really going to tell a six-year old she can’t ride her bike because her license expired?

So maybe the next time you’re in WeHo, stop in and tell him why you’ll be spending your money somewhere else.

Besides, not many of us can really pull off the spangled banana hammock look.

Not that our significant others would actually want us to try.

………

Crap like this really pisses me off.

A Black Palo Alto man was the victim of a racist road rage attack and hit-and-run last week, for the crime of riding his bike in the traffic lane.

In other words, exactly where he should have been.

The victim had moved into the lane to pass a driver who was attempting to park. Yet when he stopped at the next stop light, he was accosted by a white pickup driver for “riding in the middle of the road.”

The two men began arguing, at which point the truck driver called the cyclist, who is Black, a racial epithet. The victim reported to police that the driver spat on him, reached out to grab his arm, and then drove the truck into the side of the bicycle. The cyclist fell to the ground.

The cyclist said the truck drove over his bicycle, and the driver turned north on Webster Street and then east on Lytton Avenue. The cyclist later saw the truck turn back onto University Avenue heading east and continue driving. The cyclist’s leg had a small laceration, which paramedics treated at the scene. His bicycle was damaged but remained rideable, police stated.

It’s possible that the victim could have moved into the lane suddenly, without signaling or checking behind him, and cut off the driver. Or not.

None of which justifies violence, let alone racism.

The local police are investigating it as a hate crime, as well as an assault with a deadly weapon and injury hit-and-run.

Which is good, because there’s just no excuse for this. Ever.

Period.

And no pit deep enough for someone who could do something like this.

………

Things could finally be looking up in Hollywood.

While CD13 Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell has called for a much needed Complete Streets makeover of Hollywood Blvd, challenger Hugo Soto-Martinez has raised the ante with a call for pedestrianizing sections of the iconic tourist attraction.

Meanwhile, Los Angeleno examines the race between O’Farrell and Soto-Martinez; while O’Farrell has been justly criticized for blocking bike and traffic safety plans until recently, Soto-Martinez is calling for more bike lanes in the district.

………

Finish the Ride and the LACBC hosted a Clean Air Ride over the weekend.

Speaking of which, Metro will offer free bus, train and bikeshare rides tomorrow for California Clean Air Day.

………

Someone did an impressive job trolling St. Louis officials by installing old bike helmets and an official looking public notice calling on pedestrians to use them crossing the street.

All to call attention to the city’s unacceptably high death rate.

………

Evidently, ebikes have been around a lot longer than you may think.

………

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

Horrible story from the UK, where police are looking for four men who chased down a 21-year old bike rider with their car, then got out and stabbed him to death, apparently because the driver had crashed into the victim.

No bias here, either. A victim-blaming road sign in England’s Hertfordshire county instructs bike riders to “Please consider other road users.” Because anti-social bike riders kill so many motorists, evidently.

………

Local

Streetsblog eyes the new bike lanes on 1st, 3rd and 7th Streets in DTLA.

Your next bike could have a “Los Angeles” frame with a camo finish. Although that color choice may not be the best option if you actually want drivers to see you.

Santa Monica announced a crackdown on scofflaw drivers who park on the city’s sidewalks and parkways starting next month, urging people to “stop parking like a jerk.” Now tell them to do bike lanes, where the city has allowed delivery drivers to park for decades with no repercussions.

 

State 

Streets For All offers a full recap on transportation-related bills signed or vetoed by Governor Newsom, as well as bills that died in the state legislature. Meanwhile, Streetsblog offers a similar roundup of active transportation, transit and climate bills.

LAist takes a deep dive into California’s new Freedom to Walk Act, which doesn’t actually legalize jaywalking after all; it’s still technically illegal to cross the street in the middle of a block, but police are now directed not to cite it unless crossing poses an imminent danger. However, California’s restriction against jaywalking only applies to blocks with a traffic signal on each end, so it’s already completely legal anywhere else.

The CHP has received a $1.2 million federal grant to “promote the importance of drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians looking out for one another so that everyone can safely share the road.” Maybe they could put the money to better use by giving their officers more training in bike law and bicycle crash investigations.

The victim in Sunday’s fatal head-on crash in Fresno County has been identified as a 51-year old Anthropology professor at Clovis Community College; the driver of the Acura supercar who needlessly took her life as she rode her bike has been identified as a 47-year old Clovis man. Thanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

 

National

Streetsblog talks with Elizabeth Creely, of the San Francisco-based grassroots advocacy organization Safe Street Rebel, on how to start a grassroots safe streets movement in your city. Or you could ask Streets For All founder Michael Schneider, who’s done a helluva job in just a few short years.

Singletracks revisits their most popular mountain bike product reviews.

Great idea. Bentonville, Arkansas will host the first-ever bike festival for deaf bicyclists next week.

Eleven scenic Hudson Valley bike rides for your next trip to the Empire State.

Philadelphia is investing $23 million in the city’s Vision Zero budget for next year, $6 million more than originally proposed. That compares with $38.5 million in Los Angeles, which has a population 2.5 times higher; LA would have to spend another $20 million to match Philly’s per capita spending.

Mississippi’s Gulf Islands National Seashore has reopened with the first phase of a new bike and pedestrian pathway, with the second phase due in two years.

 

International

The fourth annual Ebike Future Conference will be held virtually next week, including a virtual expo that will run automatically for the next 22 days.

Bike Radar examines why people and businesses are swapping cars for bikes, transforming their lives and operations by taking to two wheels.

Forget micromobility. The latest trend is minimobility, with three and four wheeled vehicles designed to carry one or two people and fill the gap between bicycles and motor vehicles. Which is a pretty damn big gap, if you ask me.

While bicycling fatalities continue to climb in the US, British bike deaths dropped 21% last year.

Brussels is the latest major European city learning to love the bicycle; the Belgian capital has already come a long way from its car-centric past.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list, as two riders explore archeological relics and forested parks — and the local hospitality — by biking Jordan’s ancient trade route.

No, an Indonesian bike shop isn’t giving away free ebikes in response to a government gas price hike.

Former Italian pro Omar Di Felice announced plans for a record bike ride across Antarctica, riding to the South Pole and across the continent to the base of the Leverett Glacier and back.

 

Competitive Cycling

Once again, the pro peloton is justifiably complaining about race conditions, saying “UCI doesn’t care about our safety,” after complaints about dangerous conditions in the CRO Race were ignored by officials.

Pinarello unveiled the world’s fastest 3D-printed bike, allowing maximum customization for Filippo Ganna in his attempt to set a new hour record.

Red Bull looks at L39ion of Los Angeles founder and multiple national crit champ Justin Williams, and his mission to change bike racing for the better.

 

Finally…

Get a Covid shot, get a shot at winning a bicycle. Apparently, bike surfing is an effective way to make sure drivers see you at night.

And few people realize that sharrow is a portmanteau of arrow and sheep.

………

G’mar chatima tova to all observing Yom Kippur tonight. 

Thanks to Matthew Robertson for his latest monthly donation to help keep all the best bike news coming your way every day. Any donation, no matter how large or small, is always deeply appreciated. 

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Bizarrely blaming War on Cars for tax rebate, WeHo drops traffic diverters, and bikemaker accused of cutting his foot off

No bias here.

A columnist for the Orange County Register bizarrely makes the claim that giving people without cars $1,000 to help cover their transit costs is part of the mythical War on Cars.

As if the new law awaiting Gov. Newsom’s signature somehow does anything to prevent anyone from owning a car if they want one, and can afford it.

Some people might say single occupancy vehicles are a way to get to work and earn a living, enabling the government to collect taxes from paychecks, and also that they transform into quadruple occupancy vehicles that drive people to school, to doctor’s appointments and on trips to spend money at California businesses.

Portantino doesn’t acknowledge any need for a car in his argument in support of his bill. “SB 457 will incentivize mass mode shift toward sustainable transportation by allowing a credit against the ‘net tax’ in the amount of $1,000 for each household with zero registered vehicles,” he said, according to the bill analysis.

And silly me. I thought conservatives were in favor of cutting taxes.

Evidently just not for poor people. Or if it involves cars.

Never mind that the quote above is her entire argument that the tax credits have anything to do with a War on Cars.

Although she seems to think banning the sale of new gas cars by 2035 is somehow equivalent to banning all cars.

Instead, she morphs into complaints about Covid relief payments and buying votes, conveniently forgetting that California law requires rebate checks if tax payments exceed the state’s needs.

But that apparently doesn’t fit her narrative.

Photo by Jonathan Cooper on Pexels.

………

It was nice while it lasted.

WeHo’s first attempt at bike-priority street failed, apparently because it was inconvenient of some ressident.

Never mind that you can’t encourage more bike riding by requiring bicyclists to stop every block or two.

………

Unbelievable.

Bizarre update to last week’s story about Baphomet Bicycles framebuilder Dillen Maurer losing a foot in a collision with an ATV rider as he rode his bike near his Taos, New Mexico home.

The local sheriff has concluded it never happened, and that Maurer cut his own foot off using a chainsaw. Although that be easy to prove — or disprove — since there would be blood and bone trapped in the chainsaw blade to back up the sheriff’s contention.

If not, he owes Maurer a very public apology.

………

Radio host Stephanie Miller is one of us, as is writer and contributor to her show Bob Cesca.

………

Ludacris is one of us, too. Or at least can play one in the movies.

………

And NASCAR great Dale Earnhardt was one, too.

But only if he could ride backwards while sitting in the handlebars.

………

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

No bias here. Ebike-riding teens get the blame for bad behavior by La Jolla drivers, as school officials complain about kids riding in a bike lane legally passing stalled traffic, and nearly getting hit by careless drivers who can’t figure out how to use their mirrors.

There’s no excuse for hit-and-run. And not much for being a self-entitled jerk forcing your way through a sea on oncoming bikes, even if they are on the wrong side of the road.

Police in Madison, Wisconsin say the sabotage of bike trails with electronic cords hung at neck height has finally stopped; one man was seriously injured crashing into one on his bike.

No bias here, either. A New York woman was impaled on a fence after she was struck by a driver with 168 traffic violations — yes, 168. The driver blamed bad brakes, while the victim’s daughter somehow blamed a new parking protected bike lane.

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

A bike-riding transient was arrested for allegedly attempting to sexually assault a masseuse at a Pasadena health spa.

An Arkansas man got six years behind bars for fleeing from police on a bicycle while carrying meth and a handgun he was prohibited from possessing as a convicted felon; he was stopped when he was tased by a cop.

A bike-riding South Carolina man was busted for randomly shooting a woman’s SUV with a BB gun.

………

Local

A number of tiny homes for homeless veterans at West LA’s Veterans Center were destroyed in a fire evidently started by an overheated lithium ebike battery; 11 units were destroyed, and at least four others damaged.

Palmdale’s Planning Commission adopted a new 23-year update to the city’s General Plan, including plans to develop 20-minute neighborhoods, with increased walkability and bicycle safety.

 

State 

Carlsbad bike riders call on the city to amend a “well intended but misguided” ordinance that requires ebike riders to dismount anytime they come within 50 feet of a pedestrian or equestrian on a pathway less than five feet wide, which in effect forces people to walk more than they ride on some trails.

San Diego’s Park Blvd is getting much needed bus and bike lanes leading to Balboa Park, following a repaving project.

Kindhearted Turlock firefighters bought a new BMX bike for a 14-year old boy after his was trashed when he was struck by a driver.

A Forestville teenager recounts his efforts to save the life of Santa Rosa chef Rob Reyes, who died after crashing into a metal bollard on a bike path during a bike ride with his restaurant staff last month.

 

National

Maui, Hawaii considers age limits and other restrictions on commercial downhill tour operators to address complaints about safety on the island’s Haleakalā volcano.

Aussie cyclist Lachlan Morton raised over $12,000 for his friend, Kenyan pro cyclist Suleiman “Sule” Kangangi, who was killed in the Vermont Overland gravel race, while setting a provisional record for completing the 530-mile Colorado Trail in 3 days 10 hours and 15 minutes.

The chancellor of the City University of New York is one of us, too, spending his weekend mornings on his bike.

Life is cheap in New Jersey, where carelessly killing a 13-year old kid riding a bicycle is only worth a damn traffic ticket.

 

International

Electrek discusses the best ebikes at every price point, starting at just $995 and rising to $6,999.

A London bike theft victim complains the city has to do more to stop the crime, with a bike is stolen even 16 minutes, and just 2.6% of cases resulting in an arrest.

That feeling when you’re not welcome in central London riding a Penney Farthing while dressed in Viking chain mail, complete with traditional Viking weaponry. Apparently bringing up bad memories of the last time the Vikings sacked London in 842.

The manager of the English Premier League’s Manchester United side is also one of us, taking a leisurely ride around Cheshire with his wife after the weekend matches were cancelled following the queen’s death.

That’s more like it. A UK truck driver whose provisional drivers license expired 20 years ago got eight years behind bars for killing bike-riding woman while high on coke.

A British woman recalls riding her bike over an embankment after nearly running over the queen and her corgis, only to find the queen peering over the edge asking if she was alright. The corgis, on the other hand, apparently didn’t give a bark.

A writer for Road Bike Action recommends taking an Irish bike trip back in time.

If you’re going to ride 870 miles from Liège, Belgium to Nice, France in search of a croissant made with “lavender grown on a wide limestone plateau high up in the Côte d’Azur hinterland,” it better be a damn good one.

New Zealand’s Stuff website continues their Better By Bike series with a local transport engineer discussing six myths about bicycling in Christchurch. Virtually all of which you can encounter on a regular basis to disparage bicycling in Los Angeles. The only difference is instead of being told it’s too cold and wet, we’re told it’s too hot and dry. 

 

Competitive Cycling

Remco Evenepoel became the first Belgian to win the Vuelta since 1978, a victory that was all but assured after three-time defending champ Primož Roglič dropped out following a hard crash in stage 16; Evenepoel also avenged his father Patrick, who finished next-to-last in the Vuelta 29 years ago.

Apparently, Evenepoel made the right choice by switching from soccer to cycling.

Belgium celebrated Evenepoel’s victory by illuminating Brussel’s main square in the red color of the Vuelta leader’s jersey.

Meanwhile, Roglič blamed Britain’s Fred Wright for the “unacceptable” crash that forced him out of the race after touching wheels.

 

Finally…

Evidently, Bollywood stardom doesn’t keep you from having to catch a ride home on a rickshaw after getting a flat on your bike. When you’re fleeing from store security on your bike after shoplifting at J.C. Penney’s, try not to crash into a police cruiser as you make your getaway.

And that feeling when you have to turn around and go back home because the queen died.

Thanks to Teotwawki for the link.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

CicLAvia returns to the Hollywoods, Puente Hills bike skills course, and possible WeHo protected bike lanes

The big news this weekend is Sunday’s return of the Meet the Hollywoods CicLAvia.

The nation’s most popular open streets festival returns to Hollywood and West Hollywood with a 6.6 mile route that will run along the Hollywood Walk of Fame, before dropping down on Highland and connecting with Santa Monica Blvd.

Metro suggests taking the B Line, formerly known as the Red Line, to get there. Which is exactly what I would recommend, if you don’t ride there.

Meanwhile, WeHo invites you to stick around afterwards for a free concert with the Afro-Persian Experience in Plummer Park starting at 5 pm.

………

Forget rails-to-trails.

The newest trend is dump to park, as Los Angeles County plans to turn the nation’s largest landfill into the first regional park the county has built in three decades.

The 142 acre, $28.25 million Puente Hills Regional Park will include an intermediate bike skills course in the first phase of construction.

Thanks to Mike Burk for the heads-up.

………

Bette Davis once responded to a question about the best way for a young woman to get to Hollywood, with the advice “Take Fountain.”

Sort of like the LA version of how to get to Carnegie Hall.

West Hollywood must have been paying attention, though, because the city’s Transportation Commission just voted to support building protected bike lanes on Fountain Ave, which is currently home to some of the most uncomfortable sharrows in the LA area.

Assuming they get built, the new protected bikes could provide the first safe and efficient bike route into and out of Hollywood, while finally taming the streets’ deadly speeding drivers.

………

More proof of Metro’s disastrous freeway expansion policies, which cause more harm to the climate than all of their more beneficial policies help.

………

Anyone can fly or drive to next month’s Mammoth Gran Fondo.

Better you should ride your bike the 300 miles up there from Los Angeles, which would only make you more fond of the fondo.

………

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

Life is cheap in Hawaii, where a pickup driver walked without a day behind bars for killing a bike-riding man on Christmas Eve three years ago, depriving a family of their husband and father just before the holidays; the 58-year old driver was sentenced to a lousy one year of probation.

They get it. Britain’s Green Party says the ruling Conservative Party’s anti-bicycling rhetoric is putting people on bicycles in danger; the Tories are calling for mandatory liability insurance and license plates for bike riders.

The Chief Scientist for the UK’s Transport Research Laboratory apparently agrees, saying “demonizing cyclists is pointless.”

A caller to a British radio program accuses “arrogant” bike riders of getting out of hand and thinking they rule the road. You mean we don’t?

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

Police in New York are looking for an ebike-riding man who has sexually assaulted at least three Manhattan women since May. There’s not a pit in hell deep enough.

………

Local

The LA Daily News concurs with yesterday’s story from The Eastsider, which reported the pilot closure of Griffith Park Drive through Griffith Park will be made permanent. KNBC-4 says you won’t be able to drive on it after today, apparently forgetting that it’s already been closed for weeks.

Hermosa Beach police cracked down on ebike riders using ped-assist bikes to exceed the city’s ridiculous 8 mph speed limit on The Strand, where ped-assist bikes are banned. I haven’t even been able to ride that slow on my acoustic roadie, which goes faster that 8 mph even in the lowest gears. And how are people on bikes without speedometers supposed to know how fast they’re going, anyway?

A seventeen-year old kid was critically injured in a collision in Manhattan Beach last Friday, when he allegedly ran a stop sign and clipped a van, then was thrown into the path of an oncoming car. Unfortunately, the story is paywalled, so you may only be able to read the first few paragraphs.

 

State 

The San Diego Bicycle Coalition is calling for people to co-sign a letter to the SANDAG board of directors and city officials demanding safety improvements in the wake of four bike riders killed in the county just last week. Make that five, after a bike rider was killed by a motorcyclist fleeing a state park cop on Monday.

 

National

The Spotify podcast How to Save a Planet considers how to make bicycling cool again. As if it ever wasn’t.

A longtime bike shop owner explains how bike shops can weather the pressures of inflation.

Chicago bike riders are calling for change after a driver was allowed to park in a bike lane for days, receiving numerous tickets, while the failure to tow his car forced riders out into traffic.

An Illinois county will build a new bike trail to honor a fallen bicyclist and county judge, to keep his legacy alive after he was killed by a driver on Father’s Day.

An off-duty Chicago cop faces a pair of felony charges for attacking a 14-year old boy he accused of stealing his son’s bike; he picked out the one kid of Puerto Rican descent to blame, rather than all the white kids he was standing with.

A New York delivery firm has switched to ebikes to make deliveries for retailers like Whole Foods.

Gothamist asks if someone as politically connected as Jersey City’s hit-and-run driving councilwoman can really be held accountable for her crime. It’s not looking good at the moment, as she refuses to relinquish her seat.

A 75-year old Florida driver was arrested for the hit-and-run that left a bike rider with critical injuries; she was driving with a suspended or revoked license.

 

International

Cycling News examines the difference between cheap bike helmets and more expensive models. Other than the obvious impact on your wallet, of course.

A British Columbia website examine’s Vancouver’s secret underground bike economy run by homeless people.

Once again a child has been punctured by his bike handlebars, as an 11-year old boy in the UK had to wait nearly two hours for an ambulance after falling at a skate park, and having one of his handlebars puncture his groin.

She gets it, too. A writer for a Manchester, England paper says giving bike riders a speed limit just takes attention away from the real dangers on our streets.

A new study shows that if everyone bikes like the Danes, it would save an amount of emissions equal to the entire output of the UK.

A writer for Men’s Journal revisits the first three stages of this year’s Tour de France through the Netherlands, a month after the crowds and racers have gone home.

It took a 4,500-mile bike ride for a couple using Strava to draw a 600-mile long bicycle across the face of Europe, accompanied by their dog.

Life is cheap in Singapore, where a 46-year old man got just 12 days for killing a 73-year old man when he crashed his bicycle into him.

 

Competitive Cycling

No surprise here, as a new report shows the air around the Vuelta isn’t always as pristine as they might like.

Nairo Quintana has pulled out of the Vuelta, after allegations of using the banned painkiller tramadol.

Three-time world Madison champ Amy Pieters has been moved to a rehab facility in her native Netherlands; she spent four months in a coma after suffering a massive brain injury in a training crash.

 

Finally…

That feeling when the cops have your stolen bike, but they won’t give it back. Your next e-foldie could be made from flax, or maybe your next bike could be just plain weird.

And Formula 1’s Dutch Grand Prix wants to be more sustainable, and ban cars whenever possible.

Which kind of defeats the whole purpose of a car race.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Bike riders warned to avoid construction on PCH, a bike a week stolen in WeHo, and driving drunk on the SaMo bike path

Bicyclists are being urged to avoid PCH between Deer Creek Road and Sycamore Canyon Road for the next two days.

The roadway will be reduced to a single lane for construction work from 9 am to 2 pm, with traffic allowed through in alternate directions, while the bike lanes will be completely blocked.

However, there’s no word on what road conditions will be like if you arrive before or after that five-hour time period.

It’s also questionable whether bikes can be prohibited from using PCH during those hours, since California allows bicycles on any public road where cars are allowed, with the exception of limited access highways in most urban areas.

Whether it would be smart to put yourself in that situation is another matter.

Image from RoadTrafficSigns.com.

………

West Hollywood sheriff’s deputies report that crime was up a whopping 137% in the city last year. Fifty-two bicycles reported stolen, a rate of one per week; just over half were classified as grand theft with a value in excess of $950.

Five bikes have been stolen in WeHo so far this year.

Both of those totals are undoubtedly higher, since the majority of bike thefts never get reported to the police.

………

File this one under Stupid Driver Tricks.

I often get asked if any place is really safe from dangerous drivers. People like this are why I usually say no.

https://twitter.com/SantaMonicaPD/status/1503856385922154498

Thanks to @yoScot for the heads up, who added this thought.

Recklessly — is there a safe way to be driving on the bike path?

………

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 group of Georgia teens who terrorized a young kid by surrounding him as he rode his bike on a golf cart path, then shot him repeatedly with liquid-filled splatter pellets in yet another harmful TikTok challenge; the boy escaped with a bloodied nose and pellet gun wounds to his torso.

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

An English man was busted for bicycling under the influence after crashing into a woman, who suffered minor injuries when she was knocked to the ground.

Police in the UK are looking for a hit-and-run bicyclist who fled the scene after crashing into a 75-year old bike rider, leaving the man fighting for his life with a critical head injury.

Then there’s this.

https://twitter.com/schscott/status/1501847461064843269?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1501847461064843269%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-15-march-2022-291073

………

Local

Los Angeles is installing bright red bus lanes in East Hollywood and DTLA, with others coming soon on Alvarado and La Brea; LA interprets state law as allowing bike riders to use bus-only lanes, though some other cities may disagree.

An Atwater Village elementary school is working with the PE Learn-To-Ride program sponsored by All Kids Bike to teach the youngest students how to ride using balance bikes, after a teacher discovered no one really wanted to win a bicycle as a reward for good behavior.

It looks like protected bike lanes on Pasadena’s Union Street could soon bcomee a reality, after the city council formally blessed a contract for a 1.5 mile lane reduction with traffic island and bollard-protected bike lanes; the project also includes a short bike boulevard on Holliston Ave.

Hermosa Beach police used bait bikes to bust a pair of bike thieves, while making sure the bikes had a value of more than $950 so it would count as felony theft. Which serves as yet another reminder that the LAPD still doesn’t use bait bikes to cut high theft rates, thanks to a misguided opinion from the city attorney’s office concluding they could be seen as entrapment; meanwhile, that same city attorney wants your vote for LA mayor

 

State 

A San Francisco op-ed says gas prices aren’t high enough, and should be $15 a gallon to include the associated costs of global warming, military, traffic and crashes.

Around 250 people turned out for a weekend rally in Berkeley calling for a carfree Telegraph Avenue, and blocking traffic to show what the street could be like.

San Raphael residents are complaining about plans to remove a traffic lane on Point San Pedro Road to install a buffered bike lane, even though the bike lane was mandated as part of a 1971 permit agreement, but never built.

 

National

CityLab says many Americans are taking up ebikes and e-cargo bikes as an alternative to high gas prices, so why are they absent from government policy discussions?

Planetizen examines how bike advocates can strengthen existing partnerships and make strategic alliances to secure federal funding for projects that will benefit bicyclists, pedestrians and other vulnerable road users. Surprisingly, the answer isn’t promising to waste as much government money as much as possible.

A Staten Island teenager will spend the next four years behind bars for a carjacking and police chase that ended when he crashed into a man riding a bicycle in a crosswalk; fortunately, the bike-riding victim was not seriously injured.

Atlanta bike riders protested a surprise decision to remove bollard and planter-protected bike lanes on iconic Peachtree Street; the lanes were originally installed as a two-month pilot project, but have been in place for over 200 days.

A Savannah, Georgia Catholic school celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with their annual bike parade for kids from Pre-K through 8th grade.

Diddy is sort of one of us, saying he gets around Miami on a five grand water bike.

 

International

A vote by the UN General Assembly calls on member nations to integrate bicycles into public transport, while improving road safety and promoting the use of bicycles to increase bicycle trips to improve sustainability and reduce greenhouse gasses.

Cycling News examines how bikes get made, starting from iron ore or a vat of petrochemicals to the finished bicycle in your garage. Although you’re better off keeping it inside your home, since garages are often easy targets for thieves.

Life is cheap in Toronto, where a newspaper columnist questions the justice of a lousy two-year sentence for a speeding, uninsured driver who killed a popular science teacher as he was riding his bike, while trying to escape a police chase; police clocked him going over twice the 40 mph speed limit. But at least he’ll be forbidden from driving for five years — even though it should be a lifetime ban.

A British man is being tried for manslaughter for the death of a teenager outside a nightclub; the fight began when he and his companions started kicking and riding the victim’s bicycle. Two other men have already pled guilty in the case.

 

Competitive Cycling

When your famous bike-riding dad gets his image on a wall.

https://twitter.com/GeraintThomas86/status/1503652857765113856?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1503652857765113856%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-15-march-2022-291073

 

Finally…

That feeling when you get run off from a historic mansion while walking a bike. Your next ebike could have a driveshaft instead of a chain.

And who needs a $10,000 gold bar when you could win a beer-branded bike instead?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

New book says accidents aren’t accidents, WeHo considers protected bike lanes, and keeping deadly drivers on the road

She gets it.

The New York Times’ Peter Coy talks with journalist Jessie Singer about her new book, which concludes that there are no accidents, just events that could have been prevented.

And that too often, it’s the marginalized members of society who pay the price.

On the other hand, Coy clearly doesn’t get it.

Coy: …Anyway, is it possible to go too far in preventing accidents? It wouldn’t make sense to limit cars to going 30 miles per hour.

Singer: It is our moral and ethical imperative to do everything in our power to protect human life. When people talk about the nanny state, what they’re doing is making excuses for deeply preventable, deeply racialized and class-divided causes of death.

If we look at places that do everything in their power to protect human life, from Sweden’s Vision Zero traffic safety policies to Portugal’s harm-reduction overdose prevention policies, we see that countless lives could be saved just by putting people first.

Never mind that cities across the world have successfully reduced the frequency and severity of collisions by cutting speed limits below 30 mph.

Let alone the worldwide 20 Is Plenty movement to reduce the risk of collisions as well as the risk of death or serious injury by slowing drivers to 20 mph in populated areas.

So yeah, it does make sense to lower speed limits to 30 mph, or less. Because the convenience of drivers should never outweigh the lives and safety of those around them.

Graphic by tomexploresla.

………

There may be hope for WeHo bike riders yet.

Streets For All reports that a pair of studies could result in protected bike lanes on Fountain and Santa Monica Blvd, respectively.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1490794943794716674

Either one would be a game changer.

Together, they would provide the first safe bicycling route through the city, from La Brea in the east to Beverly Hills in the west.

Let’s just hope they both get the go ahead.

………

Today’s common theme is the lenient courts and government officials who inexplicably keep dangerous drivers on the road until they kill someone.

Like the heartbreaking news from New York, where a 99-year old Holocaust survivor was killed by a reckless driver with a long record of speeding and red light violations.

Or the Florida hit-and-run driver who killed a 70-year old man riding a bicycle, and was somehow still on the road despite five previous DUIs; he was caught after two days, which presumably gave him plenty of time to sober up before he was busted.

………

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

No bias here. A candidate for San Diego city council says the city’s new bike lanes are death traps that go unused for weeks at a time.

A Florida city puts the entire obligation for safety on bike riders by requiring lights and bells on their bikes. But there’s not a bike bell made that will do a damn thing to stop aggressive, speeding and/or distracted drivers.

………

Local

Work is proceeding on an $8.1 million, 2.8-mile extension of Pasadena’s Greenway Trail. Correction: Make that Whittier, not Pasadena. Thanks to Joe Linton for keeping me honest.

 

State

A new bill from bike-riding La Cañada Flintridge State Senator Anthony Portantino would require cities and counties to identify a High Injury Network of their most dangerous roads and intersections, and create a plan to correct them within 15 years. But do we really want to let them keep killing people for another 15 years? Cut the timeline to five years, and I’m all in.

Streetsblog offers more details on SB 922, which would permanently exempt bike lanes and other environmentally friendly transportation projects from lengthy environmental reviews. Which are too often abused to halt or delay bike, pedestrian and transit projects that would benefit the environment.

San Diego belatedly begins work on building a separated bikeway along Pershing Drive through Balboa Park, after a bike commuter and a scooter rider were killed on the existing bike lanes last year. Meanwhile, the family of noted architect Laura Shinn, who was killed by an allegedly stoned driver while riding her bike to work, have filed suit against the city. Considering the years-long delay in improving the bike lane, they might as well just back up the Brinks truck. Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

Bad news from Livermore, where a woman was killed when her bike was hit head-on by a driver after they both crossed the yellow line while rounding a curve from opposite directions.

A Pittsburgh CA man was sentenced to 28 years to life behind bars for fatally shooting man as he was stealing the victim’s bike; the shooter bizarrely claimed self-defense, claiming he felt threatened by the victim’s attempt to get his bike back. Thanks again to Phillip Young.

 

National

In a question that answers itself, Streetsblog asks if America needs a Mobility Bill of Rights, after a group of Washington nonprofits author one for their state. Los Angeles bike advocates created a Cyclists’ Bill of Rights over a dozen years ago, which was sort-of approved by the city council, until it wasn’t, and then promptly forgotten, which was probably the city’s intent all along.

Popular Science says don’t buy an ebike, just build one using the bike in your garage.

Cycling Utah talks with our own Peter Flax, who offers a “look at racial justice issues through the lens of his deep and nuanced understanding of the various facets of bike culture.”

The Boston Globe questions whether the city will keep up the pandemic momentum that spurred bike lane creation throughout the area. Unlike Los Angeles, which squandered the opportunity presented by light pandemic traffic by failing to build a single new bike lane that wasn’t already in the works.

A Brooklyn councilmember tries, and fails, to successfully navigate a street without leaving the bike lane, missing out on the $100 challenge due to an array of drivers blocking it.

DC intends to install another ten miles of protected bike lanes this year, adding to its existing 24-mile network, with another 20 miles coming by 2024.

 

International

Worst dad of the year award goes to British father stole his daughter’s bicycle from the trunk of her car to teach her a lesson.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a careless driver walked without a single day behind bars for killing a man riding his bicycle; she was sentenced to 280 hours of community service and lost her license for a lousy 14 months.

A study from Belgian ebike brand Cowboy confirms previous studies showing ebikes offer the same fitness benefits as regular bicycles.

Amsterdam wants to give you over $2,200 for ideas on how to improve bicycle safety in the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

At last, some good news about two-time Grand Tour winner Egan Bernal, who was released from the hospital two weeks after a training crash left him critically injured; however, he still faces a very long recovery.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could come wrapped in rice and potatoes. How about an ebike can actually fly?

And ebike riders of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your chains.

No, literally.

………

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

WeHo gets ebike rules wrong, SCAG wants your opinion on walkable cities, and La Brea gets bus (and bike) lanes

Sometimes, I don’t even know where to start.

West Hollywood announced that sheriff’s deputies will conduct a bicycle and pedestrian safety operation throughout the month of September.

They will ticket anyone who commits a violation that could endanger someone walking or riding, regardless of who commits it.

So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits, so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

Nothing unusual there.

But then the city added this highly problematic paragraph.

In addition, users of dockless mobility devices are reminded that only one person is allowed on a device at a time and e-scooters and e-bikes must be ridden on the road, never on the sidewalk – riding dockless mobility devices on the sidewalk is subject to citation. Users of e-scooters and e-bikes must have a valid driver license or instructional permit and must wear a helmet while riding. Users are advised to ride as far to the right side of traffic lane or in designated and marked bike lanes whenever possible and users must always ride in the direction of traffic. Dockless mobility devices should never be parked in a way that blocks pedestrian activity and access. Concerns about dockless mobility devices may be submitted to the City through its website or through the West Hollywood Official City App, which is available as a free download for iPhone users on the App Store and for Android users on Google Play. Feedback may be submitted by email, as well, at parkingconcerns@weho.org or by phone at (213) 247-7720.

Yes, dockless e-scooter users are required to have a driver’s license or learner’s permit, since the state somehow equates riding a tiny scooter with operating a deadly multi-ton machine.

But there is no license requirement for ebikes, dockless or otherwise, unless they are throttle controlled and capable of going up to 30 mph. And there is no helmet requirement for anyone over 18 years old.

In addition, people on bicycles are only required to ride as far to the right as practicable.

Which means you’re allowed to ride outside the door zone, and take the full lane on any street where the right lane is too narrow to safely share with a motor vehicle, while providing at least a three-foot passing distance.

It’s more than a little frightening when the people responsible for the laws don’t seem to know them.

Ebike photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels.

………

SCAG wants to know what you think about walkable communities.

………

Don’t hold your breath waiting for bike lanes on La Brea Ave in Los Angeles.

But newly announced plans call for a nearly 6-mile, part-time bus lane on the busy corridor from Sunset Blvd to Coliseum Street, which bike riders are free to use during the limited times they’re in operation, as long as you don’t mind a bus running up your ass.

Maybe someday Los Angeles will get serious about getting people out of their cars, and make bus lanes 24 hours a day, seven days a week, just like a real city.

Or not.

………

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

You’ve got to be kidding. Police in Yorkshire, England evidently have better things to do than deal with a teenage driver who hit a woman on a bicycle, then stole her phone to keep her from taking pictures after the crash; the cops said she should have just swapped information with him and left them out of it. And let him keep her phone, evidently.

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

Police are looking for a pair of men who rode their ebikes onto the UC San Diego campus, and shot someone multiple times with a BB gun.

………

Local

South Pasadena has just over three months to institute a Slow Streets program, or lose a $420,000 Metro open streets grant that has to be spent by the end of the year.

 

State

California may be many things, but apparently, polite ain’t one of them.

More proof that bike riders are tougher than most people think, as a Goleta man rode his bicycle to the hospital after he was stabbed by another man; his would-be killer was arrested a few hours later for attempted murder.

A plan to improve safety and add bus lanes and bike lanes to a pair of Mountain View streets has hit a roadblock, after it was revealed that the project would require removing 120 trees, including 27 irreplaceable heritage trees. Maybe they should consider removing parking spaces or traffic lanes before they start chopping down trees.

 

National

New Apple watches will be able to tell when you start a bike ride, and call for help if you fall off.

Cycling News recommends their picks for the best gravel bike helmets to protect you on and off the road.

Great idea. An advocacy group in my Colorado hometown is asking the public to contribute a new bike and helmet worth $150 in an effort to give a bicycle to every second grader in the city’s six public elementary schools.

The co-founder of Better Streets Chicago describes being part of a people-protected bike lane to call attention to the need for safer streets.

Cambridge, Massachusetts is installing new flexpost-protected bike lanes on one main street, in response to a new requirement to build out the city’s bike network within five years. That compares to Los Angeles, which gave itself 25 years to build a bike network, while considering the whole thing just “aspirational.”

New York Streetsblog examines the many failures that allowed a dangerous driver to remain on the road until it was too late, despite dozens of traffic violations and a suspended driver’s license; he kept driving anyway, and killed a three-month old baby while driving the wrong way.

New bike lanes have officially opened on New York’s iconic Brooklyn Bridge, after the city removed a traffic lane to give bike riders their own space apart from pedestrians. Meanwhile, a writer for Streetsblog wants to know why existing concrete barriers lining the city’s Addabbo Bridge can’t be moved a few feet to the left to create a protected bike lane.

Wired takes a deep dive into America’s only remaining Tour de France winner, the Tennessee company he founded to make low-cost carbon fiber, and his new ultralight carbon frame ebike.

 

International

Treehugger’s Lloyd Alter offers an excerpt from his new book, Living the 1.5 Degree Lifestyle, arguing all that’s needed for an ebike revolution is “good affordable bikes, a safe place to ride, and a secure place to park.”

Boy, does he get it. A Toronto writer says there’s not much hope for the city’s Vision Zero program when the city council’s “collective head is so far up the tailpipe of motorists.” Couldn’t have said it better myself, except here in Los Angeles, too.

An Irish walker and sometimes bicyclist says put a bell on your bike, already. I’m not a fan of bike bells, since all they tell you is a bike rider is nearby, and an angel just got its wings. Use your voice instead, and politely tell pedestrians what side you’re passing on, or ask them to move one way or the other.

An Indian man has ridden his bicycle nearly 5,000 miles across the country in what began as a tribute to his late father, but took on a life of its own, delivering him new friends and experiences while gaining 69,000 followers on YouTube — and 82,000 on Instagram.

An Aussie website offers tips on how to pick the right bicycle for beginning riders. Although the right bike when you’re starting out may not be a few months later.

 

Competitive Cycling

Seven-time Grand Tour winner Alberto Contador set off on a 1,000-mile ride from Madrid to Milan to celebrate his pro team’s first stage victory in the Giro, in their first year on the WorldTour; Contador is co-owner of the Spanish-based team, along with former cycling great Ivan Basso.

 

Finally…

Park your bike with the fishes without getting wet. Who needs water when you can carry hot coffee on your bike?

And the pandemic bike boom has officially reached Mongolia.

………

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

%d bloggers like this: