Metro Blue Line First Mile/Last Mile Projects

This summer, LACBC hosted two events along the Metro Blue Line as part of a pilot project to improve safety and access to each Blue Line station. While bus and train rides usually make up the core of a person’s trip, people often get from their homes to the train, or from the train to work, on their own. This is known as First/Last Mile, and often requires folks to walk, ride, or roll to access a transit center.

This First/Last Mile project started last fall with six other community-based organizations including TRUST South LA, Multicultural Communities for Mobility, American Pacific Islander Forward Movement, Ride On Bike Coop, East Side Riders, and Healthy Active Streets.

Each organization led walk audits with volunteers and community members around each of the 22 Blue line stations to assess them for safety and ease of access, and to help identify opportunities for improvement.

LACBC staff and volunteers completing walk audit materials at Compton Station in January.

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Over 300 Volunteers Tally Number of People Walking and Biking in Fifth Los Angeles Bike and Pedestrian Count Presented by Metro

LOS ANGELES, CA –

Volunteers from across the City of Los Angeles are out on the streets today, counting the number of people walking and biking at over 100 unique locations. Since 2009, the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC) has led this biennial all-volunteer effort to track the growth of walking and biking over time in Los Angeles. The 2017 LA Bike + Ped Count, presented by Metro, is produced in collaboration with Los Angeles Walks and local partner organizations throughout the city. The LA City Bike + Ped Count is the largest source of data on walking and biking on Los Angeles streets. Previous data collected demonstrated year-to-year increases in the numbers of people biking and walking, particularly where the city has installed new and improved infrastructure, and helps make the case for further investment in our communities. 

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Vision Zero Alliance Launches Policy Platform

Los Angeles Vision Zero Alliance Marks Two Years of Vision Zero Initiative by Announcing New Policy Platform

platform.pngLast week marked the two-year anniversary of LA City’s adoption of Vision Zero, calling for a 20% reduction in traffic deaths by 2017, and the elimination of traffic fatalities by 2025. To help reach this goal, the Los Angeles Vision Zero Alliance released its official policy platform.

The Alliance is a coalition of more than 20 community-based and advocacy organizations, including LACBC, that has worked since August 2015 to support and influence the implementation of the City’s Vision Zero initiative.

As part of the Alliance, LACBC will use the platform to monitor, track, and evaluate relevant departments holding each accountable to the City’s own Vision Zero goals.

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Climate Ride Profile: Angela DeVore

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Getting to participate in your first Climate Ride is special no matter how you get there.

Next week, Angela DeVore will join Team LACBC as they depart for five days of riding in the San Juan Islands and Olympic Peninsula! And this ride is a special one because of how much work Angela put in to get here. I caught up with Angela earlier this week in Griffith Park to talk about Climate Ride, her favorite places to ride, and James Dean.

From One Climate Ride to the Next

Angela was signed up for the California Central Coast Climate Ride in June, but injured her elbow in spring. The team encouraged her to set her sights on the Pacific Northwest Ride instead, and she decided she'd figure out a way to be fully rehabbed by August. The thought of missing the opportunity to ride in the Pacific Northwest with Team LACBC was too great to miss.

Angela has always ridden bikes for recreation, but her interest became serious about ten years ago when she decided to start training for a triathlon. Cycling quickly became Angela's favorite sport of the trio.

Riding a bike complements her background in set and theme park design, as she's someone to whom California's diverse landscape serves as an inspiration. 

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Ain't no mountain high enough.

Queen of the Mountain

Angela loves the many challenging climbs in Malibu and the Santa Monica Mountains, including Latigo, Piuma and Mullholland.

In fact, she loves climbing so much that she's covered many of the state's greatest rides, venturing into the Sierras, Northern California, San Diego and the San Gabriel Mountains.

Of course when she got offered an adventure through Italy's Dolomites to test ride the Liv / Giant Langma for her first ride review for Road Bike Action Magazine, she couldn't say no. Check out her piece, going live in September!

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Taking in this year's Giro Rosa.

Squad Goals

It was clear from talking to Angela that the other thing she loves most about cycling is the camaraderie.

Los Angeles has a great women's cycling scene, and Angela has made tons of new friends riding with groups and friends - having fun and pushing each other at the same time. Through these rides, Angela became close friends with LACBC Board Member Nora Hipolito.

Nora has done a number of Climate Rides, and when this year's event came onto the schedule, she (easily) convinced Angela to join the ride. She joined Team LACBC for the camaraderie, but also to raise money for two organizations who she really supports. (Angela still needs to hit her fundraising goal: please click here to support her, LACBC, and planet earth.)

Angela's currently moving into a new career of real estate investment, and focusing on working with buildings to become LEED certified.

As for Climate Ride Pacific Northwest, she won't have to go it alone as teammates Alek Bartrosouf, Alex Calleros, Izzy Coutin, and Greg and Tish Laemmle will also be along for the ride.

Follow Team LACBC on Facebook and Twitter as we'll be sharing their progress from August 3 - 7!


Fifth Successful Season for Operation Firefly

LACBC is proud to announce that we completed the fifth season of Operation Firefly this past winter, successfully growing the program by 20% over the last year. We did this despite weather conditions that Angelenos don’t see too often - rain.

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Operation Firefly is a bike light distribution and education program of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC). We organize groups of volunteers and dispatch them to undisclosed locations during the evening commute, where they distribute lights and safety information to people riding in the dark without lights. We survey all light recipients to collect data on why they are riding at night without lights and ensure bilingual Spanish speaking volunteers are at each distribution. Operation Firefly is one of the most popular programs among our volunteers, and it shows! The total volunteer hours for our on-street distributions this season was 645 hours! We owe the success of Operation Firefly to a large group of Team Firefly volunteers who came out night after night - thank you!  

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LACBC Stories: Zachary Rynew - How I Really Became a Cyclist

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Like a lot of people I know, I've had a bike my entire life. Even though I work for LACBC, I never considered myself a "cyclist" until just a few years ago. I did family rides growing up, biked to classes in college, and would find myself doing a two-hour ride every few years. For me, cycling was a hobby and a secondary form of transportation.

Instead of biking, my main form of recreation was running. Watching the Ironman Triathlon take place in Hawaii years ago, my imagination was fueled by where human-powered activity could take me. Out of the three disciplines, I started with running, but loved it so much that I never got around to the other two.

I ran 10k's. Then marathons. Then I even did an ultra-marathon. I enjoyed trail running and going deep into the Santa Monica and San Gabriel Mountains to places where cars could never go.

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Take Action with LACBC: Support Safe Streets on the Westside

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Street safety projects on the Westside have come under attack. If opposition to safe streets succeeds in getting these projects removed, it could stifle similar projects across the city.

Here at LACBC we know that even the best drivers can make mistakes on dangerous streets. LA is one of the deadliest cities in our country for all road users--especially the most vulnerable such as children, older adults, pedestrians, cyclists, low-income commuters, and commuters of color. Street safety improvements are critical strategies to solve this public health crisis.

LADOT, informed by community engagement, used internationally proven and evidence-based methods to design the new street safety improvements on the Westside, including the Mar Vista Great Streets Project and the Safe Streets for Playa Del Rey Initiative.

Some drivers using these corridors have grown impatient because they are unable to travel at the same unsafe high speeds as they previously could. However, LADOT continues working to improve the synchronization of signal lights to help improve traffic flow, while also keeping streets safe for all who use the corridor throughout their day, including drivers.

Despite the great public benefit, these projects unfortunately have come under attack amid a flurry of misinformation being circulated about the projects. There is some concern that they will be removed, but there are actions you can take to make sure that the streets are safer for the communities of Mar Vista and Playa Del Rey.

 

Mar Vista Great Streets Initiative

The Mar Vista Great Streets Initiative began in 2015 with an extensive community outreach process facilitated by Councilmember Mike Bonin and the city-wide Great Streets Initiative. The primary goal is to make Venice Blvd. safer for all road users who travel the corridor, as well as to support local businesses.

Venice Blvd. is part of LA’s Vision Zero High Injury Network (HIN), meaning the street has a higher rate of injuries and deaths compared to others in L.A. Since 2011, there have been 48 cyclists and pedestrians injured from crashes in this particular corridor.

In May the City installed four new pedestrian crossings, protected and buffered bike lanes, and improvements at existing signalized intersections--all with the goal of reducing injuries and deaths. The project runs about .8 miles from Inglewood Blvd. to Beethoven St.

 

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Playa Del Rey Street Safety Initiative

The Playa Del Rey projects came from community interest in improving street safety and making Playa del Rey a more livable beach community for all of its residents. After two and a half years of community outreach and engagement, the community opted to install lane restriping as a pilot project, which it will continue to evaluate over the next year. According to LADOT, from 2003 - 2016, Culver Blvd. had 84 serious injury crashes and 6 deaths; Jefferson Blvd. had 96 serious injury crashes and 2 deaths; and Pershing Dr had 64 serious injury crashes.

The boundaries of each project are Culver Blvd. between Vista Del Mar and Jefferson Blvd.; Jefferson Blvd. between Culver Blvd. and Lincoln Blvd.; and Pershing Dr. between Cabora Dr. and Westchester Pkwy. Each of these streets were re-striped to calm traffic and slow vehicle speeds as cars drive through the Playa del Rey neighborhood. Each also includes added buffered bicycle lanes that will create safe routes for people on bikes to connect to destinations on Westchester Pkwy., Lincoln Blvd., and Dockweiler State Beach bike path.

 

 

Vista Del Mar

A separate but related project on Vista Del Mar was urgently developed--with an unfortunately a rushed community outreach process--in response to dangerous levels of speeding, a pattern of tragic crashes that resulted in serious injuries and death, and a $9.5 million wrongful death lawsuit that was settled in April of this year. The suit came in response to the tragic death of 16-year old Naomi Larsen, who was fatally struck by a car while trying to cross the street after attending a bonfire at Dockweiler with her friends.

From 2003 - 2016, there were 210 traffic collisions on Vista Del Mar, including 5 deaths. To address the dangerous design of this street before the summer beach crowds started flooding in, LADOT began working on May 21 to move all parking to the west side of the street only (parking had to remain on the street due to California Coastal Commission regulations), create U-turn pockets, and narrow the road to one lane in each direction. This project does not include a bike lane. The project runs from Imperial Hwy. to Culver Blvd.

 

Want to take action?

Help make sure these street safety projects are a success and show your support by:

ATTENDING one of the upcoming meetings. Don’t forget to share on social media if you show up!

Venice Neighborhood Council meeting
When: Tuesday, July 18, 7:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m
Where: Westminster Elementary School Auditorium, 1010 Abbot Kinney Boulevard, Venice, 90291
The board will consider a motion to host a town hall with Councilmember Bonin.

Venice Blvd Great Streets Town Hall
When: 
Saturday, July 22, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m
Where:Windward School Gym, 11350 Palms Blvd., Mar Vista, 90066
Speak directly with LADOT staff about the project!

Playa del Rey Street Safety Projects Town Hall
When: 
Saturday, July 29, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m
Where: Roski Dining Hall, Loyola Marymount University, 1 LMU Drive, Los Angeles, 90045 
Speak directly with LADOT staff about the project!

 

SHARING on social media! Tweet and post photos of your ride through Venice, Jefferson, and Culver Boulevards, and Pershing Drive on the new bike lanes! Use #SaferVeniceBlvd, #SaferJeffersonBlvd#SaferCulverBlvd#SaferPershingDr, and #SaferWestside to share your message with fellow safe streets advocates. 

SUPPORTING all of LACBC's work on advocating for safer streets by becoming a member, renewing your membership, or making a donation.

EMAILING the Mar Vista Community Council and Venice Neighborhood Council TODAY to show your support for street safety improvements on Venice Blvd. See sample email below.

 

SAMPLE EMAIL:

To: MVCC@EmpowerLA.org, VeniceNC@EmpowerLA.org

CC: councilmember.bonin@lacity.org

BCC: lyndsey@la-bike.org

 

RE: Support for Venice Blvd Great Streets Safety Improvements

Dear Members of the Mar Vista Community Council and the Venice Neighborhood Council:

I strongly encourage the Mar Vista Community Council and the Venice Neighborhood Council to continue supporting the project on Venice Blvd. as part of the Mar Vista Great Streets Initiative. This recently installed project has come under attack, much of it being fueled by misinformation. Impatience of drivers shouldn’t stop the community  from building safer streets and more vibrant neighborhoods. These safety improvements will prevent future injuries and can save lives. 

As a [student, older adult, mom, cyclist, person with a disability, business owner, etc], I firmly support the street safety improvements on Venice Blvd. This project was designed through community dialogue throughout a yearlong open process and is meant to make all residents and visitors safer. Similar to how the farmers market has improved our community, we believe the “small town feel” of this Great Streets initiative will do the same for Mar Vista and will further improve community culture.

We must continue to improve our streets with rigorous and informed evaluations, and I urge you to remain committed to creating vibrant and safer streets in Mar Vista.

 

Sincerely,

 

[Your name]

[Your address]

 


This article was produced in collaboration with Dayna Galbreath from Streets Are For Everyone (SAFE) and other partners.

 


Thank you for another sucessful #LARiverRide! What's next?

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Thank you so much for attending the 17th Annual L.A. River Ride! Over 1,500 riders of all ages and 300 volunteers participated in the L.A. River Ride this year. We hope you had a great time with your friends and family. It’s been already two weeks since the event and we wanted to catch up with you on a few things.

You’re now a proud member of LACBC!
(Or your membership is renewed!)

Did you know that your registration comes with a 1-year LACBC membership? You’re now an LACBC member! Or your annual membership has been renewed as of June 4th if you were already a member, which means your new 1 year membership will begin at June 5th, 2017.

LACBC is a membership-based organization and we rely on your support to make Los Angeles County a better place to bike. Your membership benefit includes: 

  • A team of bike advocates working for you
  • Being a part of the bike movement
  • Discounts with our participating business partners
  • Discounts on rides, workshops, and special events
  • Invitations to members-only rides and events, such as Sunday Funday rides on every First Sunday!
  • Representation at the local level through our local chapters, which you can join at no extra cost
  • Representation at the state level through our affiliate partner at CalBike.
  • Weekly newsletters delivered to you every Thursday that includes bike events, education programs, advocacy news, and more on #BikeLA

**If you recently got an email from us saying that your membership has expired, we apologize for the mix up. We’re in the process of updating our membership rolls with River Ride registrations.. You’ll be getting a membership card and a membership packet from us early July so look out for your mail! Thank you for your patience and welcome to the LACBC family!

 

See photos from #LARiverRide:

 


Are you excited to check out professional photos from the event? Serena from Serena Grace Photo (Autry) and Alan Crawford from AC Digital Media (Long Beach) took really great photos of you at our two hubs. Check out their photos and tag yourself on this Facebook Album.

PhotoCrazy also took photos of you on the L.A. River Path at the Fletcher Ave, about 3 miles from the Start/Finish at Griffith Park. You can purchase high resolution photos from their website here. Thank you PhotoCrazy.com for awesome photos! 

We <3 seeing your photos #LARiverRide!

 We put together a Storify board that shows all the social love from you guys! If you have posted your photos or stories on Instagram or Twitter with #LARiverRide, you’ll see them on the board. Check out what riders loved about #LARiverRide and share yours with a hashtag#LARiverRide and #LACBC! We would still love to see more photos from you!

 

What’s next?

So you’ve done the LA River Ride. Let’s keep in touch!

 

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Measure M Guidelines - SPEAK UP on how transportation dollars should be spent in your community!

The Metro Board has been developing guidelines on how to spend Measure M funding in your city and across the County. Measure M is a county-wide ballot initiative passed last November to fund transportation projects. Thursday, June 22, the Metro Board is scheduled to adopt the Measure M Guidelines. 

LACBC, in partnership with many other transportation, safety, equity, and housing advocates, has been urging the Metro Board to support key amendments to improve the proposed guidelines. These include (but not limited to):

  • Ensure that highway subfunds can be used for planning and building bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure.
  • Require that Measure M funds align with state climate goals, help achieve vehicle miles traveled reduction targets, reduce burdens on disadvantaged communities, and improve safety--especially for the most vulnerable road users.  

Good news! Metro Board Members Garcia, Bonin, Solis, and Hahn have recently proposed a motion that does just that! If passed, this motion would allow “Operational Improvements” for Highway Subfund Projects to include active transportation, Complete Streets, and Innovative Mobility Transportation projects. It also replaces references to Level of Service (LOS) with Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT).

 

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LACBC Board President Bids Tamika Farewell

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Dear LACBC Family,

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, I’d like to ask you to join me in expressing our profound gratitude to Tamika Butler, our Executive Director, for her leadership of LACBC during her nearly three year tenure. Tamika has decided to pursue other opportunities and will be stepping down as Executive Director effective on July 14, 2017. 

11822529_1632790330294041_1775264967824023270_n.jpgUnder Tamika’s leadership, LACBC has become both a local and national leader in advocacy for cycling, active transportation, and transportation equity. We’ve seen our operating revenue almost double, membership more than double and have racked up numerous policy wins for cyclists throughout Los Angeles County.

In 2016, Tamika and LACBC, played a key role in the Yes on M campaign – successfully leading to the passage of Measure M – securing, for the first time, a dedicated source of funding for Active Transportation in Los Angeles County. Additionally, having just completed the 17th Annual River Ride, and after 17 years of advocacy, we can celebrate that we will finally see the gap on the LA River Bike Path closed through Measure M funding.

The declaration of Los Angeles as a Vision Zero city means Tamika’s legacy of ensuring all residents of LA County have access to safe cycling infrastructure will be memorialized in the concrete and steel of improving and expanding active transportation infrastructure. While the hard work of implementation and holding elected officials accountable remains, the prioritization of a high injury network means low-income communities and communities of color that have historically been disproportionately affected by traffic violence will finally see real investments in safety and active transportation infrastructure.

Tamika is leaving the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition primed for continued growth and success, which speaks volumes not only to her own leadership, but also to the team and culture she cultivated during her tenure. While we wish her success in all her endeavors, we must now turn to the future of our organization to ensure what has been gained under Tamika’s leadership is not lost. The board will be identifying an interim Executive Director in the coming weeks, and launching a full, national search to attract a strong applicant pool for our next Executive Director. We’re asking members and supporters of LACBC, community partners, and funders to take a moment and encourage anyone you may know that may be interested to apply.

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition will celebrate it’s 20th anniversary in 2018, and we’ll continue to fulfill our mission of making Los Angeles County a fun, healthy, and safe place to ride a bike. We’re better positioned now to achieve that mission than ever before, and that’s in no small part due to Tamika’s tenure as Executive Director. We wish her well.

Sincerely,

Doug John

President, Board of Directors

Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition

 



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