Evidence spring has sprung along the 10 Freeway; bike lawyer says CicLAvia streets aren’t safe to ride

April 18, 2011

Funny how much beauty you can find in the most unexpected places when you ride a bike.

I spotted this on a recent ride to check out the newly rebuilt section of the Ballona Creek Bike Path in Culver City; I doubt the drivers speeding by have any idea it’s there.

Im not sure what the wooden structure was originally intended for, but it makes a lovely rustic wildflower planter.

Viewed from the other side, the planter disappears and youre left with just a hillside covered in flowers.

Its only on closer inspection that you realize its a rare island of beauty on the edge of an ugly freeway.

Then again, the new section of the bikeway looks pretty good, too; maybe someday, it will look like that all the way into the Marina.


A Los Angeles attorney says it just isn’t safe to ride the recent CicLAvia route when cars are allowed.

Event participant Greg Pincus stated that it is Los Angeles is a different place without all of the vehicles. But Attorney Ehline says: “Los Angeles has a long way to go before anyone should consider riding a bicycle on that 7.5 mile stretch that they shut down last Sunday.”

Lawyer, please.

I usually ride that exact route along 4th, 6th and 7th Streets when I go Downtown, and I’m not dead yet. In fact, I choose those streets because I feel a lot safer there than I do on busier boulevards just a few blocks away, even at rush hour. As do hundreds, if not thousands, of other cyclists every day.

And while I’m not exactly a cheerleader for L.A. streets, I’ve ridden with relative safety throughout the city for nearly two decades, as have countless other riders.

Yes, bad things can and do happen.

Despite the recently adopted bike plan, L.A. stills lacks proper infrastructure, and will for decades to come until the plan is finally built out. Even then, it will take a massive investment to repave and patch the city’s crumbling streets before they offer the safety Angeleno cyclists deserve.

Then there’s the city’s notoriously careless, aggressive and distracted drivers, many of whom seem would seem to require major surgery to pry their precious cell phones from their faces. Let alone their foot off the gas pedal.

Yet in the overwhelming majority of cases, it only takes a modicum of care to get from here to there safely. And enjoyably.

I don’t know Michael P. Ehline, Esq. For all I know, he may be an excellent and caring attorney, exactly the sort of person every cyclist wants in his or her corner when it all hits the fan.

But to suggest that cyclists take their lives in their hands to ride on what are actually some of the city’s better bike streets isn’t exactly the best way to demonstrate expertise in the subject.

I mean, seriously.


No surprise as Danae Marie Miller pleads not guilty in the February death of world class triathlete Amine Britel, Miller was allegedly under the influence and texting when she ran down Britel as he rode in a Newport Beach bike lane, and had at least 15 traffic citations in the previous 6 years; thanks to Lois Rubin for the link.

Meanwhile, the deputy who initially stopped Marco Antonio Valencia confirmed on the witness stand that Valencia told him “Shoot me, my life is over” as he was being detained. The arrest came minutes after the hit-and-run collision that took the life of Joseph Novotny and seriously injured three other riders, suggesting that Valencia was well aware of what he had just done.


Yo! Venice! sounds the alarm over bike theft by the beach; if you’re looking for suspect, you might want to start with Bill Effing Murray. Santa Monica Spokers Brian and Cynthia ride foldies in Oregon with the Long Beach bike expats. Retailers are gearing up to meet the needs of female triathletes. Richard Risemberg says the real junk miles are the ones spent racing and training, as opposed to actually going somewhere; personally, I say there are no junk miles. Damien Newton says thanks to everyone who attended or helped make an amazing Friday fundraiser possible. More great photos and video from Thursday’s Bike Night at the Hammer Museum. A new TV and online show follows a cyclist touring the country car-free, by whatever means available including an odd assortment of bikes. Actors Rachel Bilson and Hayden Christensen ride through Studio City. Santa Monica’s Cynergy Cycles plans a special charity event on May 9th featuring the 2011 Tour of California HTC-Highroad men’s team, benefitting Right to Play. A Confident City Cycling course will be held in Culver City starting April 30th; maybe a certain lawyer might benefit by attending.

A few fond looks back at this month’s San Diego Custom Bike Show. A driver leaving a San Jose party hits and kills his own friend; initial reports indicate the cyclist was riding in the middle of the street, despite bike lanes on either side of the road. A Vallejo man was killed when he hit a power pole support cable while riding on the sidewalk. A Monterrey paper reports on last weekend’s Sea Otter Classic.

Now you can ride with no air down there. Former framebuilder Dave Moulton tells physicists nice experiment, but that’s a push toy, not a bike. Bike Noob says you’re going to fall sooner or later so learn how first, citing my advice on the subject in part. Bike Hugger looks at this year’s Bicycle Leadership Conference. Elly Blue makes the economic case for secure on-street bike parking. Advice on what to do if you’re chased by a dangerous dog — and a first hand view on what happens if it catches you. Illinois offers new Share the Road license plates. The Cutters win Indiana’s Little 500 for the 5th year in a row. A civil rights attorney says you can’t be arrested for talking back to a cop, at least in New York, while the Post continues its smear campaign against cycling in the city; any pretense of journalistic objectivity went out a window a long time ago. A wheelchair-bound Florida man is accused of ramming a female cyclist after chasing her through a parking lot the previous two days.

In Montreal, everyone thinks they have the right-of-way. A writer for the London Mail says Lycra Louts should not be above the law. A cheap mirror could save the lives of London cyclists. A drunk cyclist has to be pulled out of a UK river. Maserati is the latest high-end automaker to produce their own bicycle. Police in the United Arab Emirates begin a bike safety campaign; why is it that bike safety campaigns always focus on cyclists, rather than the drivers who can, and sometimes do, kill us? South Korea’s president says bicycling is a key component of the country’s green growth. A Philippine Senator files a bill calling for bike lanes and bike parking throughout the island nation. Aussie cyclist Matthew Lloyd is confident he’ll be back after being fired from the Omega Pharma Lotto team.

Finally, a truck-driving Bakersfield father asks other drivers not to hit his son anymore when he rides in a local bike lane. And advice from my hometown on how cyclists and horses can share the trail; oh wait, L.A. equestrians say that’s impossible.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 361 other followers