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Notice for July BPIT, 7/5/11: Educational Programs, Bicycle Friendly Streets, and More Bike Lanes

Next Tuesday, July 5th, will see the next meeting of the Bike Plan Implementation Team (BPIT).  Here is the agenda for the meeting. BPIT meetings are held, as always, from 2:00-3:30 in room 721 in City Hall.

This month represents a slight shift in the direction of the BPIT, both in terms of topics discussed and in terms of the decision process for new projects. If you want to help shape the schedule and priorities for the next stage of bike plan implementation, it’s incumbent that you attend July’s meeting. If you aren’t able to make it out to the meeting, leave your comments below and LADOT Bike Blog will make sure they get into the hands of City Planning.

Among other items, the BPIT will discuss the Safe Moves bicycle education program

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Bicycle Facilities and Safe Routes to School

In previous generations, the majority of school aged children either walked or biked to school. Children got more physical activity, our streets were less congested, and our air quality was better. Fast forward to 2011: less than 15 percent of children living within a two-mile radius either walk or bike to school. A vast majority are either driven by parents or taken to school by bus. Increased traffic and safety concerns have made it inhospitable for many children to bike or walk to school.

Safe Routes to School

Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Programs were created to reverse these trends. SRTS can fund infrastructure and/or programs that improve safety and encourage walking and bicycling. Projects emerge through a collaborative effort between parents, schools, community members and local government. One of the key steps in determining potential partner schools is based on need.  A new mapping tool from the Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC) has been a huge help this year in determining where to prioritize SRTS efforts in the City of Los Angeles. (Below is a map developed by SafeTREC of pedestrian and bicycle collisions near school sites in central LA between 2006 and 2008. )

Los Angeles, Central City pedestrian or bicycle collisions

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Rain or Shine, Downtown LA Ride is Still on

Despite the intermittently rainy conditions, we here at the LADOT Bike Blog just received some good news for Bike Week LA.   We just got confirmation from Metro that the Downtown LA Ride will take place tomorrow morning, rain or shine.  While an extremely heavy downpour could shut the ride down for good, a light rain won’t deter us from getting things started.  Metro, LADOT, LAPD, and CICLE will all be on hand to help bicyclists enjoy a fun ride through downtown.  LAPD will provide an escort for the assembled riders and members of CICLE will act as “sweepers” at the back of the pack to make sure no one falls behind.

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We highly recommend that you bring along a little rain gear, just in case.  If bicyclists in cities like Portland can brave inclement weather in droves, why not in Los Angeles?  We’ll see you, bright and early at 8:00 AM, with our rain pants on.

We’ll have photos from the Downtown LA Ride, along with photos from today’s Blessing of the Bikes, up tomorrow afternoon on LADOT Bike Blog.

Bike Week LA 2011: Downtown LA Ride

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As Bike Week gets closer, more exciting details are emerging about the various events that are going to take place throughout the City (and the region). On Wednesday May 18th, the annual Downtown LA Ride will allow riders to see just how accessible Downtown LA  employment destinations, restaurants, museums, and coffee shops are on a bike. This year’s route was specifically designed to interface with existing Metro Rail stations to stress just how accessible transit and bicycling have become in Los Angeles – you can find the route map here. One notable example of how well transit and bicycles get along is the removal of the peak hour bicycle restrictions on Metro Rail.

The event will begin in front of Union Station on Alameda Street, and will be supported again this year by LAPD. Participants are expected to arrive at 8:00 am, with a planned departure time of 8:30 am. We hope to see you there!

BPIT’s “Top 10”: How Would You Build Bike Lanes Around NBC/Universal?

The BPIT (Bike Plan Implementation Team) has been quite the focal point of bike community controversy lately. Despite any disagreements over CEQA reivew, however, work still must be done; projects are moving forward even as we speak. In past months, projects like 7th Street and Venice Boulevard have come before the BPIT, had preliminary conceptual design work done, and were featured on the LADOT Bike Blog to get opinions of the public.

3 BPIT "Top 10" projects, spanning the Cahuenga Pass

Three more of the BPIT’s “Top 10” projects have conceptual designs, and we’d like to present them to you for your comments and opinions. How would you build bike lanes on Cahuenga Boulevard, Barham Boulevard, and Lankershim Boulevard? These three streets surround the NBC/Universal project area and can serve as a vital link of bicycle infrastructure between the San Fernando Valley and Hollywood. In fact, these projects were moved up to the BPIT’s “Top 10” to make sure the NBC/Universal project, once completed, wouldn’t preclude implementation of bike infrastructure.

Below the fold we’ll cover the particulars for each street and some preliminary design concepts for new bike lanes. As always, all of your comments here go straight to City Planning and our Bikeways Engineers.

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BPIT’s “Top 10”: How Would you Build Venice Boulevard Bike Lanes?

The Bike Plan Implementation Team (BPIT), which met this Tuesday, is continuing their work on the “Top 10” list of priority projects.  In addition to working on bringing bike lanes to 7th Street, the BPIT also began discussions about extending the existing Venice Boulevard bike lanes from their current terminus at Crenshaw Boulevard all the way to Downtown LA.  We’d like to open up that discussion of bike lanes on Venice Boulevard to the public at large.  Your ability to make it down to City Hall at 2:00 PM on a Tuesday shouldn’t impact your ability to help LA implement its Bike Plan and become more bike friendly.

As part of the BPIT’s continued outreach for input on “Top 10” projects, LADOT Bike Blog last month launched discussions (both on the blog and on Facebook) on how best to build bike lanes on 7th Street.  We’d like to again extend the opportunity to comment on how to build bike lanes on Venice Boulevard. Read more

Project Updates: Bike Lanes Moving Forward

The LADOT Bike Blog hasn’t done a full review of all the bike lane projects in the queue in quite a while. Sure, we covered the Woodman Avenue bike lanes and the latest on the Metro Orange Line extension bike path, but that hardly represents a comprehensive update.  At the April BPIT meeting, Planning and Bikeways engineering promised to provide a full update on all ongoing bike lane projects.

Well the wait is now over: LADOT Bike Blog is presenting a full update on all of our projects’ progress since our last update in January. As always, you can check out the full list of current projects on our Bike Lane Projects page, our Bike Path Projects page, our Projects map, and our BPIT map.  There’s also the matter of the remaining, and mysteriously named, “Year Zero” projects.  We’ll provide an explanation of what “Year Zero” is, and what projects are left, below the fold.  But first, the current projects update.

Woodman Bike Lane

New Bike Lanes on Woodman Avenue

Project Updates

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Update: Metro Orange Line Extension Bike Path

The opening of the Metro Orange Line BRT in the fall of 2005 greatly expanded mobility options for the notoriously auto-centric San Fernando Valley. The original 14 mile leg that stretches from Warner Center to North Hollywood has been a big success, surpassing Metro’s own 2020 ridership goals in just seven months.

Running beside the busway for a majority of its length is the Orange Line bike path – a Class I bicycling facility (a small section on the busway’s extreme eastern end has Class II bike lanes). According to the LA City Bike Plan, Class I facility’s are “ideal for novice riders and children, recreational trips, and long distance commuter bicyclists of all skill levels who prefer separation from traffic.”  The bike path has also been a big hit and has helped Valley residents realize the value of investments in adequate bicycling and pedestrian facilities.

Picture taken shortly after the openning of the Orange Line Bike Path

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Bike Maps Across the City: LADOT Delivers

As mentioned here and elsewhere, the LADOT Bike Program has recently completed a long-overdue update of our LA City Bike Maps.  As part of getting these maps out to the public, I get to mail out maps (free to you) and each coordinator gets to drops off boxes of new maps all over the City at bike shops and bike co-ops.  This approach makes plenty of sense: Members of the public who are most likely to want a bike map are also those members of the public most likely to visit bike shops and bike co-ops.

Westside Bike Map Dropoff 001

Pallets full of bike maps in the depths of LADOT's storage area

The coordinators have delivered so many maps, in fact, that we only have enough Valley Bike Maps left to mail out to people submitting map requests.  This past week, I rode along with coordinator Brendan Keeler and intern Derek Levoit, delivering bike maps across downtown and the westside.

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Bike Parking, BPIT, BAC: Bike-y Meetings This Week and Next

Update: We were just forwarded the BAC’s agenda for their 4/5/11 meeting.  You can download it here.

The start of a new month always heralds plenty of new venues for hearing bike-related issues.  The slate of upcoming meetings and hearings relating to bicycling concerns, however, happens to be particularly robust in the coming two weeks.

  • Wednesday March 30th: City Planning is holding a public hearing for the proposed bicycle parking ordinance.
  • Tuesday April 5th: The Bike Plan Implementation Team (BPIT) meets at City Hall for their monthly meeting.
  • Tuesday April 5th: The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee (BAC) holds their bi-monthly meeting at Hollywood City Hall.
  • Sunday April 10th: The first of three CicLAvias in 2011.
CM Reyes

CM Reyes installing racks at CARECEN; in the near future, a revised bicycle parking ordinance should hit the streets (and inform new developments)

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