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Posts Tagged ‘Safety’

Update 3 : Here’s a round-up of links covering the ordinance from the week – The Los Angeles Times, LAist (twice), Curbed LA, LA Now, The Source, Streetsblog LA (more than a few times), Biking in LA, LA Daily News (re-run in the Contra Costa Times), Flying Pigeon LA, and Blog Downtown, San Fernando Valley Sun, NBC Los Angeles.

Nationally: Washington Post, Huffington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, ETA (UK)

We’ll add more links as they’re published.

Update 2 : The official language of the ordinance is available on the City Clerk’s website here.

In total, 11 speakers came up to speak on the Bicyclist Anti-Harassment Ordinance, and all but one were supportive of the ordinance. Afterwards, Council Members Koretz, Rosendahl, LaBonge, Garcetti, Reyes, and Cardenas all spoke in favor of the ordinance.  Many important points were made by the council members and public speakers alike. Some of the highlights:

  • Council Member Koretz tried bicycling for the first time in 15 years during Carmageddon and was promptly harassed while on the road.  This type of behavior, he correctly observed, is what keeps prospective riders from getting out on the streets.
  • Council Member Reyes made the argument that many of Los Angeles’ bicyclists have to do so because of economic necessity.  Finding ways to protect them also protects their livelihoods and LA’s economy.
  • Attorney and bicyclist Ross Hirsch got the “visual aide award” for bringing his two sons up to the podium with him, urging the City Council to adopt the ordinance so that his sons might ride to school safely.
  • Ted Rogers of Biking in LA recounted the same story that he earlier told for Bill Rosendahl’s Youtube Channel.
  • Council Member Garcetti imagined a day where instead of “Carmageddon”, we might have a “Cycletopia”.
  • In a clear example of who the ordinance would benefit, CM Tom LaBonge asked for everyone in council chambers who had ridden a bike in Los Angeles in the last month to stand.  Over 90% of the room left their seats, making clear that this ordinance is a step in the right direction for everyone.
  • CM Cardenas lauded the efforts to “put teeth into the law”.  He made clear that what the ordinance really addresses is the “so what?” attitude that a small number of drivers take towards the rights of bicyclists.
  • CM Rosendahl noted the precedent-setting nature of this ordinance.  He pointed out that a lot of eyes around the nation are on Los Angeles right now, and we have the chance to inspire other cities to provide similar protections to their citizens.

The bike racks outside City Hall were well-used today

Update 1 : The Bicyclist Anti-Harassment Ordinance passed with a unanimous 12-0 vote at City Council. More details to come.

The Los Angeles City Council meets today at 10:00 AM and the Bicyclist Anti-Harassment Ordinance is scheduled for item #19. Since regular working folks won’t have the ability to attend today’s council meeting, we’re going to provide play-by-play at council by live-tweeting the proceedings from the BikeBlogChris twitter handle. We’re using the hashtags #bikeLA and #lamtg, so feel free to join in the conversation throughout the day.

You can also call the Council Phone system to listen in or stream the proceedings live on your computer.

We’ll leave you with one more excellent video put together by Bill Rosendahl’s office, this time interviewing Ted Rogers, the excellent author of the Biking in LA blog. We’ll have an update later today with the results of the council vote.

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It’s finally here.  After years of work by City staff and dedicated members of the public, it’s here.  After months of council hearings and refining of legal language, it’s here.  Just over a week from today, the City of Los Angeles has the opportunity to enact a truly groundbreaking ordinance for protecting Bicyclists’ rights and safety.

A vote on the Bicyclist Anti-Harassment Ordinance is scheduled for the Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday, July 20th.  You can read the latest draft of the ordinance here. We’ll be attending the meeting next week, and will be live-tweeting the proceedings from @BikeBlogChris.

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We here at the LADOT Bike Blog just heard from our sources in City Hall that the precedent-setting Bicyclist Anti-Harassment Ordinance will go before the full City Council sometime in the next two weeks.  Many bicyclists can relate harrowing stories of an out-of-control driver assaulting them simply for being on the road, and the ordinance scheduled to come before City Council aims to give bicyclists a tool to fight back against the daily harassment to which many have been subjected.  With the coming vote at the California State Legislature for the “Give Me 3” legislation, July is shaping up as a huge month for LA bicyclists.

Bicyclists from all over Los Angeles, all over Southern California, and all over the country should keep their eyes on this groundbreaking ordinance and support the City’s decision to provide bicyclists with tools to protect themselves on the road.

Turn out support this month to help LA join the vanguard of bicyclists' rights

This landmark piece of legislation wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for CD 11 Council Member Bill Rosendahl.  It was CM Rosendahl who introduced the council motion directing the City Attorney to craft the anti-harassment legislation, and it was CM Rosendahl who helped shepherd the legislation through the Transportation Committee on its way to full City Council. (more…)

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We have some great news to pass on to you since we last reported on “Give Me 3” compliments of the California Bicycle Coalition! By a 8-5 vote, the State Assembly Transportation Committee passed “Give Me 3” (SB 910). Next up, the bill will head over to the Assembly Appropriations Committee for further consideration. Thanks to the bicycle community’s strong support (over 200 people contacted committee members to express their support for the legislation), “Give Me 3” overcame opposition from automobile and trucking interests and is now a step closer to becoming state law. For more on the SB 910’s passing the State Assembly Transportation Committee and for the latest on “Give Me 3” (SB 910), be sure to check out the California Bicycle Coalition’s official Give Me 3 website.

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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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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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The 3-foot passing bill SB 910, sponsored by State Senator Lowenthal (D – Long Beach),  has recently passed through all the state legislature committees necessary to come before the full California State Assembly. Though this is wonderful news, there is still much work to be done. For a 3-foot passing law to become law, it will need the vocal support of bicyclists from all over the state.

Give Me 3

Give Me 3 could soon be state law (courtesy waltarrrrr)

Covered extensively last week by Streetsblog, the legislation has gone through a few revisions to garner the political support needed to get to this phase.  Despite the changes made, this is still a worthwhile piece of legislation that will help to keep bicyclists safe on the streets of California.  Previous attempts at adopting a 3-foot passing law in the State Assembly have failed before, and we should hardly let the perfect become the enemy of the good when we have the opportunity to save lives on our streets.  3-foot passing legislation has been adopted by many states across the country, and it is high-time California follows suit.

In his acceptance of the Golden Spoke Award at the Blessing of the Bicycles during Bike Week LA, Mayor Villaraigosa touted SB 910 and the City’s role in bringing this legislation to the State Assembly.  He also exhorted bicyclists from around the state to get in touch with their state representatives to show support for the bill.  The vote is certain to be a close one, and SB 910 will need all the support that the LA bicycle community can muster.

When SB 910 is agendized for the State Assembly, LADOT Bike Blog will be sure to update you in time for you to contact your representatives.

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