Celebrate L.A.’s 232nd birthday with a bicycle ride!

On August 31st, the city will celebrate its 232nd birthday with a bicycle ride (or walk) along the same historic route that our founders undertook in 1781. The 9 mile route transverses the same trail that L.A.’s founding settlers took from the Mission San Gabriel to El Pueblo de la Reina de Los Angeles.  This will be the first annual celebration that includes a bicycle ride in addition to the walk. The event kicks off from the San Gabriel Mission at  428 S. Mission Dr. San Gabriel, CA. Walkers should arrive at 6:00 and be ready to depart at 6:30. Bicyclists will meet slightly later in the day at 7:30 and depart at 8:00. At El Pueblo visitors will have a a chance to check out museums, catch some live performances and participate in arts and crafts. You can even adopt a fruit tree while you’re there (limit one per household). From 11:30 until 1 pm a shuttle will be available to escort walkers back to the Mission San Gabriel. However, bicyclists will need to make personal arrangements for getting back to the ride’s starting point. See the attached flier for more information and r.s.v.p. on facebook.

[googlemaps https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&msid=202464782553779042696.0004e3ec7be175448374d&hl=en&ie=UTF8&t=h&ll=34.078825,-118.175125&spn=0.099527,0.145912&z=12&output=embed&w=425&h=350]

A more detailed look at the route
 
 

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BAC Planning Subcommittee 07/09/13: Bikeways, Bikeshare, and other updates

LADOT Bicycle Program staff recently met with the Planning Subcommittee of the BAC (Bicycle Advisory Committee) to discuss a range of on-going bicycle projects in the City. A copy of the agenda can be found here.

Bikeways, MyFigueroa, & Expo Bike Path

During the past fiscal year the LADOT Bike Program has continued to implement the 2010 Bicycle Plan with a total of 125.5 miles of bikeways installed. This number includes 1.5 miles of bike paths, 101 miles of bike lanes, 22.4 miles of sharrows, and .6 miles of bicycle friendly street treatments. During the Bicycle Advisory Committee meeting, the BAC passed a formal motion to “amend the 2010 bike plan to include high school students in the education component in addition to elementary and middle school students”. This motion will advise City planning officials as they continue to work on the Mobility Element update which re-examines portions of the 2010 Bicycle Plan among other things.

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Spring Street bicycle lane undergoing redesign

A new concept is being considered for the Spring Street Green Bike Lane. This redesign will retain crucial portions of the original solid green lane while still addressing the core concerns voiced by the film industry that uses Spring Street for shoots. To begin, the current color of the paint will be converted to the same forest green color being used in New York. This new version of paint should still provide a contrast between designated spaces for bicyclists and motor vehicles while interfering less with filming.

The redesign will also reduce the overall amount of green material used on the lane to 10% of the current design. Instead of being a solid green bike lane, a four-inch green stripe will border the four-inch white stripe marking the outer edges of the lane.  The bicycle lane will still have the original two foot striped white buffer on the outer edge of the lane. Merging zones near intersections will retain more green paint to further emphasize where drivers making lane changes  should be most alert for bicyclists. These changes outlined above will occur between 3rd and 9th Street, while Spring Street from Cesar Chavez to 3rd Street is set to retain its current solid green lane.  This motion approved by the City Council further outlines the final design specifications.

While this means that the Spring Street bicycle lane will no longer be the same solid green design that LADOT began the pilot program with, this new design may provide a more cost-effective yet beneficial way of drawing attention to the lane with color. By being more selective about how much and where special treatments are used on a street, funding is saved that may be allotted towards future bicycle projects on additional streets. The green paint will be concentrated on areas around intersections where it is most likely to be effective at preventing accidents.

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What’s Next:

At this point LADOT engineers will further develop and finalize the new Spring Street design concept described above. Next, the design will undergo review by the California Traffic and Control Devices Committee (CTCDC). This review will occur at the CTCDC’s  July 25th meeting in Napa, CA where the committee may offer input and recommendations for improving the design. While the use of green material on streets in California is approved by Caltrans and the Federal Highway Association, the Spring Street design proposes a unique experiment by lining the bike lane stripes with an additional 4 inch green stripe. This portion of the design is considered experimental by the CTCDC and will therefore require special approval.

The green lane pilot program continues to evolve as LADOT explores what design will work best for Spring Street’s unique qualities and how this design may be applicable to other streets and future bicycle project in Los Angeles. Already, through previous testing we have seen the results of different paving materials in terms of durability and effectiveness on our mixture of concrete and asphalt streets. Moving forward, LADOT is developing criteria for where and which type of streets green pavement materials will be most effective. While LADOT continues to implement the 2010 Bike Plan we will work with community stakeholders and residents to ensure that bikeways and lane markings are placed and designed in a manner that best meets community members’ needs. For future updates on when you can expect to see these new changes on Spring Street and on other bicycle projects going on in the city, be sure to check back on the LADOT Bike Blog.

The Bike Program Welcomes Two Assistant Bicycle Coordinators: Elizabeth Gallardo and Austin Sos

The bike program is very pleased to announce that we have expanded our team, adding two part time Assistant Bicycle Coordinators, Elizabeth Gallardo and Austin Sos. Austin will be managing databases, our Sidewalk Bike Rack program, as well as a our bicyclela.org website. Elizabeth will be working on a Bicycle Friendly Business and Business District program, managing the upcoming Bike Corral and Fixit Bicycle Work Station programs, and working on a variety of graphics projects.  

New Assistant Bike Coordinators Austin Sos & Elizabeth Gallardo

New Assistant Bike Coordinators Austin Sos & Elizabeth Gallardo

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Upcoming community meeting for bicycle and transit projects

A great shot of Pico House on Main St., bicycle lane and new pedestrian crossing included.

Over the next 2 weeks a number of community meetings are planned for bicycle and transit related projects. If you have questions about a project or would just like to show your support, consider attending one of the following:

Regional Connector Community Meetings

First off, Metro is holding multiple Regional Connector Community Meetings to discuss the project’s progress and the possibility of extending when construction crews could work on the project. The first meeting was held last night in the Los Angeles Central Library Taper auditorium at 630 W. Fifth St. Los Angeles, CA 90071. Another will take place tonight, from 6:00pm to 8:00pm at the same location.

Purple Line Extension Phase

Metro is hosting a meeting at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art to discuss preparations for section 1 of the Purple Line Extension. Initial construction of the first section of the extension is set to begin in 2014 and will extend the subway nine miles, adding new stations at Wilshire/La Brea, Wilshire/ Fairfax, and Wilshire/ La Cienega. Staff will be available to present information and answer questions about the project from 5:30pm to 7:30pm in the fifth floor Terrace Room, at 5905 Wilshire Blvd.

Union Station Master Plan

The Union Station Master Plan is still underway. The next public meeting is planned for August. However, in the meanwhile, you can still submit comments or questions by emailing them at lausmp@metro.net

We’re Halfway Through L.A. Bike Week

Swee Woo bikes with parasol in hand at Grand Park, following the press event kickoff of L.A. Bike Week

We kicked off Bike Week with a press conference in Grand Park on Monday morning (our Flickr pics from the event, and Daily News photos). Pam O’Connor, Mayor of Santa Monica and Chair of the Metro Board of Directors, challenged Angelenos to “make L.A. a world class city for cycling.” O’Connor also introduced two new Metro initiatives: a two-year/20-ride partnership with C.I.C.L.E. and a partnership with LACBC and BikeSGV to provide bicycle safety classes this summer. Read more

Los Angeles Bike Week 2013 on the Horizon!

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Coming on the heels of a very successful Ciclavia, as part of National Bike Month, Los Angeles will be celebrating Bike Week May 13-19.

The Bike Week schedule this year is pretty packed!

Saturday, 5/11 – Dodgers’ Game Day Ride and Stadium Tour!

While Bike Week officially starts Monday, May 13th, C.I.C.L.E., the Eastside Bike Club, Metro, and the Los Angeles Dodgers are teaming up to sponsor a group bike ride for all ages from Union Station to Dodgers Stadium to catch a game with some bike-related perks. The ride meets in the Alameda entrance courtyard of Union Station at 2 PM. For more information, read this press release.

Monday, 5/13 – Fix Your Bike Day

9:45 AM Bike tour of Grand Park with elected officials

10 AM Bike Week kick-off media event at Grand Park

All day Bicycle repair workshops at various locations, including Westlake, Baldwin Park, South Gate

Tuesday, 5/14 – Blessing of the Bicycles

8 AM 10th Annual Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital, honoring Los Angeles City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl

Wednesday, 5/15 – Guided Rides Day

All day Group bicycle rides at various locations, including Culver City, Pasadena, San Fernando Valley, and South LA

Thursday, 5/16 – Bike to Work Day

All day Bike to Work “pit stops” with refreshments and giveaways at over 60 worksites and transit stops

All day Free transit rides for bicyclists at 11 transit agencies: Metro, Metrolink, LADOT, Culver City Bus, Glendale Beeline, Long Beach Transit, Montebello Bus Lines, Norwalk Transit, Pasadena ARTS, Santa Clarita Transit, and Torrance Transit

Pledge to ride your bike on Bike to Work Day and you could win a new bicycle from REI and other great prizes!

Friday, 5/17 – Sunday, 5/19 – Bike Local Weekend

All day Discounts for bicyclists who mention “Bike Week” at over 60 retailers

Specifics about events on these days can be found on the Metro Bike Week website.

How Do You Get Abandoned Bikes Removed?

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An Abandoned, Locked Bicycle by Artist in Nothing

You bike to your favorite coffee shop a few times a week, and the last few times you’ve been there, a bike frame has been locked up. It doesn’t have wheels. It doesn’t have a seat. It’s just taking up space where you could lock your bike.

What do you do to get rid of it so people can park there again?

In the City of Los Angeles, the Bureau of Street Services is in charge of maintaining bicycle parking. There is an online form you can use to request service.

To report an abandoned bicycle that needs to be removed:

1) Go to http://bss.lacity.org/request.htm

2) Input your name, address, phone number, and email address.

3) Scroll down to “Others” and click the circle button to its left.

4) In the “Enter Problem Description” box below “Others”, write that there is an abandoned bicycle you would like removed.

5) Below that in the next box, write the location of the rack or pole the abandoned bike is on. Be as specific as possible.

6) Enter any additional comments you have below that, and press the “Submit” button

7) You should receive a confirmation email from the Bureau of Street Services letting you know they have received your request.

It’s as easy as that. Removing abandoned bikes increases the supply of bicycle parking available to all of us. If you see one, take a moment to report it. You can also used the same procedure to report bikeways that need to be cleaned.

Sunset Boulevard Bike-Transit Lanes Move Forward

Sunset Blvd. Bicycle Lane

Sunset Blvd. Bicycle Lane

Construction on 0.9 miles of bicycle and bicycle-transit only lanes could begin on Sunset Boulevard as early as next month. The bike facilities, consisting of .76 miles of peak period bicycle-transit only lanes and .14 miles of standard bicycle lanes, will reach from Figueroa Street to Douglas Street in Echo Park.

Linking up with existing bikeways to the west, the project, the first of the First Year Bike Lanes to move forward, will greatly increase the safety of bicycling between Echo Park and Downtown. Additionally, the peak hour bicycle-transit lanes will increase the speed of transit operating in the corridor, particularly the Dodger Stadium Express. In line with the 2010 Bicycle Plan, future planned bikeway improvements on this corridor include bike lanes along Cesar Chavez Avenue going east from Figueroa Street.

A public hearing for the Sunset Boulevard bicycle facilities occurred on February 14th, and the LADOT General Manager gave the project the go-ahead on April 22nd.  The Traffic and Safety Assessment for the project is available here, and the City Planning staff report is available here.

Committee on Transportation Passes Three Foot Passing Bill

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The Three Foot Passing Bill introduced by Assembly Member Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) in February received eleven “aye” votes and two “no” votes today in the Committee on Transportation. The bill now moves on to a hearing in the Committee on Appropriations at a date to be determined.

The members of the Committee on Appropriations you should contact to voice your support can be found here.

The bill would require the driver of a motor vehicle passing a bicyclist to allow three feet of space “between any part of the motor vehicle and any part of the bicycle or its operator.” The bill mandates a fine of $35 per infraction, with the driver paying an additional $220 if there is a car-bicycle collision that injures the bicyclist because the driver did not provide three feet of passing space.

Mayor Villaraigosa supports this bill, and it will be important for the next mayor to maintain that support to ensure this important bill becomes law.