By Yokota Fritz
Some members of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition noticed a guy chopping at a bike cable lock with bolt cutters. One of them chased after the guy while the other one shot photos of the alleged perpetrator. Wonder of wonders, police even responded to their 911 call.
Modern mountain biking was born on the trails of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County in the 1970s. We talk to some of the pioneers of the sport who are featured in a new documentary, "Klunkerz." Host: Scott Shafer Guests: • Charlie Kelly, creator of the Repack races and founder of the first magazine devoted to mountain biking • Gary Fisher, founder of Gary Fisher Bicycles and mountain biking icon. • Joe Breeze, founder of Breezer Bikes • Wende Cragg, one of the first female mountain bikers and a photographer whose pictures are featured in "Klunkerz."
By Yokota Fritz
San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom announced during his visit to Paris that the City will pilot a bike share program this year.
"Bike sharing will help connect thousands of residents and commuters to their workplaces and shopping destinations by providing bikes that they can easily borrow," said Mayor Newsom.
To get around the court injunction that prevents San Francisco from implementing any bike facility changes, this pilot of 50 bicycles will be funded by Clear Channel Communications with five stations installed on non-city property.
SF Streetsblog editor Bryan Goebel is an experienced journalist and active member of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. Reporter Matthew Roth is a recent transplant to the Bay Area from New York City, where he directed the New York City Streets Renaissance Campaign for Transportation Alternatives.
Fritz welcomes Streetsblog's new presence in The City where Tony left his heart (as Randy the Caltrain conductor likes to say every day).
BBC wants to interview senior cyclists in San Francisco
By Yokota Fritz
The BBC will film and interview cyclists who are over 50 in San Francisco this Sunday, in preparation for the upcoming Senior Games. Any and all who might participate should think about coming if you can. If you'd like your 15 minutes of fame, please meet at the far (eastern) end of the Marina parking lot closest to Fort Mason at 12:45pm.
The 2009 Senior Games for athletes 50 and over takes place in the San Francisco Bay Area. Cycling takes place in and around Cañada Rd in San Mateo County August 8 - 10 with time trials and road races.
The 2009 Female Mechanics Calendar features New York wrench Susan Lindell (pictured above) in January. The calendar is attractively laid out and nicely produced. Anyone looking for a holiday gift for an independent female could do worse than choosing this calendar.
And, if that weren't enough, there's a Calendar Release Party at the Luscious Garage in San Francisco on Saturday evening, December 13.
By Yokota Fritz
The big "Ciclovia" style block party is this Sunday in San Francisco. A big stretch of 3rd Street and The Embarcadero will be closed from 9 AM to 1 PM on Sunday. The T-Third and F-Market Muni lines will be FREE from 8 AM to 2 PM for access to Sunday Streets.
Sunday Streets is modeled after the Ciclovia program in Bogota, Columbia. More here.
NPR Talk of the Nation: Rob Anderson and Noah Budnick
By Yokota FritzUpdate - Show Notes: Host Lynn Neary displayed a very clear and obvious anti-cyclist bias in this show, labeling cyclists as "arrogant" and "self righteous," accusing cyclists of riding recklessly, causing collisions, getting in the way of motorists and causing road rage. Neary make Rob Anderson's speaking points for him -- she listed the potential problems of San Francisco's bike plan and let Anderson elaborate on them -- while all of her questions toward Noah Budnick were challenges about rude, law breaking cyclists. Neary allowed Anderson to respond to Budnick's points.
For example, Noah Budnick noted that current research that shows accommodating different transportation modes is not a zero sum game, like Anderson claims, but that traffic demand is elastic. Case after case shows that when commuters are given alternatives, they'll make use of those different modes. Anderson was then allowed to respond; he sneered a little about transportation "experts" -- you could almost hear the quote marks in his voice -- and expressed his distaste toward experts and planners who shove their design paradigms down the throats of the public.
Host Neary constantly brought up law breaking cyclists -- I think she was trying to get a rise out of Budnick. Budnick said that studies show that most accidents are caused by inattentive motorists, not cyclists. Noah also pointed listeners to "Why bicyclists hate stop signs" (PDF), but reiterated that Transportation Alternatives constantly reminds cyclists to obey the rules of the road.
Neary then introduced a guest from Seattle (I didn't catch his name), but he was woefully unprepared for the subject and didn't know what was going on with cycling advocacy. Seattle man was clueless about the pioneering work of traffic engineer Hans Monderman. When asked about bicycle education efforts, he lamely responded that cities hand out pamphlets to cyclists -- he was completely unaware that the Cascade Bicycle Club in his own city will teach bicycle safety education to 12,000 students this year.
Rob Anderson is the guy who successfully challenged San Francisco's implementation of a bike plan, by claiming in court that the bike plan must undergo an environmental review just like any other transportation plan. According to the Wall Street Journal, Anderson believes I ride my bike for political reasons!
"Regardless of the obvious dangers, some people will ride bikes in San Francisco for the same reason Islamic fanatics will engage in suicide bombings -- because they are politically motivated to do so," he wrote in a May 21 post.
Anderson claims he fights cycling because of our thought crimes of a "holier-than-thou" attitude and because many cyclists ride dangerously on city streets, zipping by dangerously closely to him and other pedestrians. Anderson is car-free, so I'm a little bemused that he doesn't also criticize motorists for the same attitudes and behaviors. When it comes to entitlement attitudes, dangerous behavior and actual risk, motorists have cyclists beat by a long ways.
Most cyclists in the United States (including myself) are also motorists -- the problem of dangerous behavior is not specifically a motorist vs cyclist problem, but a people problem. Some people are jerks, whether they're on a bike or in a car. Whether you're driving, cycling or walking, please be nice to those around you.
Tourists on bikes delay ferry commutes. Tourists to San Francisco, many of them from overseas, rent bicycles from several locations in The City. They ride their bikes across the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito, then catch the ferry back to the city.
Because of unprecented bike use, though, the offloading tourists with bikes are delaying ferry service for commuters. From the Marin Independent Journal:
For the past month, weekdays have also become prime time for bikers. While there are fewer problems mid-day, that changes during the evening commute run when Southern Marin residents who work in San Francisco are looking to hop on the ferry to go home.
As dozens and dozens of bikes are loaded in Sausalito, then unloaded in San Francisco, commuters wait and wait.
We have never seen it this busy," said co-owner Elena Sears, a Marin resident, who has run the San Francisco business with her husband for 20 years. They rent the bikes for about $7 an hour. "We are seeing a lot of Europeans. The dollar is weak, the euro is strong. This is a beautiful area to bike."
By Yokota Fritz
Urban Costume Karaoke Bicycle Brigade: Tomorrow in Dolores Park.
Santa Cruz rail line to be purchased. The Santa Cruz Regional Transportation Commission agreed yesterday to pay Union Pacific $14.2 million for the 32 mile stretch of railroad from Davenport to Watsonville. County residents already use the railroad right of way for bicycling and walking, and Union Pacific has apparently been worried about liability, while enforcing their property rights results in criticism from the community. The county plans to establish and rail trail along the railroad while operating a recreational rail service along the corridor. The rail trail will become part of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail Network. Union Pacific currently runs three freight round trips each week on this branch line.
Chinese Acrobats at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. Watch acrobats perform at the Beach Bandstand area of the Santa Cruz Boardwalk Sundays through Thursdays until August 21. Shows are at Noon and 3pm Monday through Thursday, Noon and 6pm on Sundays. Their gig includes tricks with bicycles. Shows are free.
Caltrain updates, etc.
The Caltrain Joint Powers Board met yesterday. Some quick notes.
Some 20+ cyclists showed up to give their input on the Bicycle Master Plan. Caltrain staff proposes adoption of the plan (which doesn't address capacity), but JPB directors seem to "get" the idea now that capacity should not only be maintained, but even expanded.
San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has taken the lead among Bay Area bicyclist advocacy groups in pushing Caltrain to adopt a plan that better services bicyclists. SFBC published their own Caltrain bike plan online (PDF), as well as a rebuttal to Caltrain's bike program FAQ.
SF Examiner looks at the issue of charging extra to bring bikes on board Caltrain. “I’m not crazy about that idea,” Caltrain boardmember Jerry Hill said. “We want to encourage people to use their bicycle, and during peak commute is when people need transit. Many people who ride bicycles don’t have the luxury of having other forms of transportation and I don’t think we should penalize them for doing the right thing.”
In other business, the JPB voted to increase Caltrain fares after public hearings. While Caltrain reported record ridership of nearly 12 million riders from July 1, 2007 to June 30, 2008, increasing fuel prices impact Caltrains operating budget. "Even though the ridership is up," says JPB vice chair Don Gage, "it's still not enough to keep up with the rising gas costs."
Peninsula cities don't want High Speed Rail and are joining a lawsuit against the California High Speed Rail Authority. Boo to them.
VTA Watch examines the proposed 1/8 cent tax to bring BART to Santa Clara. Hurray to Palo Alto councilor Yoriko Kishimoto, who speaks out against bringing BART to San Jose.
A 'suspicious device' was reported at the parking garage next to the Sunnyvale Caltrain station late Wednesday night. Officials closed the garage to public access and the Santa Clara County Sheriff closed the Sunnyvale Caltrain station at 10 PM. Caltrain established a bus bridge between Mountain View and Lawrence Avenue. At midnight the bomb squad determined the 'device' was not dangerous and allowed people access to their vehicles in the garage. Caltrain operated normally the next morning.
By Yokota Fritz
The San Francisco Bicycle Film Festival started yesterday. It continues through Saturday. Visit the Bicycle Film Festival site for schedule, locations, and other details. More Bay Area news below...
About 100 San Francisco Bicycle Coalition members held a rally on Monday at city hall, demanding activity on the court-mandated environmental review process. The SF City bike plan was stalled when Judge James Warren ruled that it must go through the same environmental impact reviews required of other transportation projects, but the perception of many cyclists is that the City has not put any priority on doing the work necessary to advance the project. More at KTVU and the Chronicle.
Supervisor Chris Daly asked the city attorney to draft legislation to permanently ban cars on Market Street between Octavia Boulevard and the Embarcadero, an idea that has been floated by various city leaders, including former Mayor Willie Brown, for more than a decade.
Daly said discussion of a proposal by Mayor Gavin Newsom to close portions of city streets, including a large stretch of the Embarcadero, on two Sundays this year prompted his action.
"It's the city's grand boulevard," Daly said. "Why don't we go for the gold?"
Sunday Streets is a proposal to close 4½ miles of streets San Francisco to motor vehicle traffic and open them up to physical activity and play. Some city supervisors, however, have introduced legislation that would require an economic and traffic study before streets can be closed, in addition to approval from the Board of Supervisors.
San Jose says they'll extend Los Gatos Creek Trail to connect Campbell and Los Campbell with downtown San Jose. Currently, the Los Gatos Creek trail stops at Meridian Avenue in San Jose. There's also a small half mile stretch of trail along Los Gatos Creek underneath I-280 and at Azurais Street. There are no plans to connect these two discontiguous stretches of the Los Gatos Creek Trail.
The next San Jose Bike Party: August 15. The theme: Lord of the Flies. The last ride got a little bit of attention from the San Jose Police. More participation in the San Jose Bike Party means more attention and some growing pains. The organizers, for example, are talking about how to limit the involvement of belligerent drunks on the ride.
Other bicycle news
You've probably seen this story: Political columnist Robert Novak, known for his aggressive driving in DC, runs a red light and hits a pedestrian in a crosswalk. The pedestrian goes up and over the hood into Novak's windshield before sliding off, according to witnesses. Novak zooms off, making this a hit and run. Attorney David Bono was biking to work when he saw this hit and run and chased Novak down. Bono called 911 and blocked Novak's car. Bono's a hero.
By Yokota FritzBay Area FolderFest. Saturday July 12, 11am. Ferry Building in San Francisco. Come join the first annual Bay Area FolderFest, a celebration of folding bikes. This is for folding bike lovers who want to meet and check out folding bikes. FolderFest will then ride over to Crissy Field, have a picnic, and have some folder fun, games, and contests. Folders will then ride around the Presidio or over the Golden Gate Bridge. Cost is free -- just bring your own picnic lunch. For more info, contact Alan at 650-726-4909
By Yokota Fritz
Tune in to KALW radio 91.7 FM at 11:00 am TODAY (Tuesday) for Your Call, and join a chat about bicycling in San Francisco. Featuring Leah Shahum (SF Bicycle Coalition), Bert Hill (SF Bicycle Advisory Committee), and Dave Snyder (SF Planning and Urban Research). It's a call-in show, so call your smart talk to host Rose Aguilar at 415/841-4134.
Graduate student Lisa Foster refuses to let the peddling keep her from wearing her pumps. "I really think bikes are made for people who wear heels," she said. "You don't have to walk in them. It's so much better."
Judy B. (her full, legal name), lives in the Fillmore and commutes to her job as a legal assistant in the Financial District. "Short tight skirts are easier to wear," she says. "Sometimes I wear bike shorts or leggings or tights under them. Knee-length skirts blow up and catch the wind like a sail, depending on the weather."
Product Manager Cheryl Brinkman tucks her skirt into a band of elastic that she wraps around one thigh, a homemade garter belt solution, as it were. And, she said, "I always have a small binder clip in my handbag, as well, to keep wrap skirts or dresses closed while pedaling."
Via Soma Fabrications, because the article features a photo of Ms. Brinkman riding a sweet Soma Mixte bicycle. My wife has the same Basil panniers, too. Sanfranciscoize the planet :-)
By Yokota Fritz
The fifth Quake City Rumble benefiting the San Francisco Bike Messenger Association Broken Bones fund takes place July 3-6 in San Francisco. Winners get free travel to the North American Courier Championships in Chicago August 29-31. This link supposedly has more information but there's nothing there at the moment, so look at the Soma Fabrications blog instead.
By Yokota Fritz
If you're an involved cyclist in San Francisco, you no doubt already know of this survey.
The San Francisco Senior Action Network is conducting a survey to understand why cyclists ride on the sidewalk in San Francisco. Sidewalk cyclists who have taken the survey so far say they would avoid the sidewalk if more bike lanes were available, if traffic laws were better enforced, and if there were a separate set of traffic laws for cyclists. In a pedestrian survey, 10% of pedestrians answering the survey indicate they have been hit by a cyclist on the sidewalk in the last two years.
By Yokota Fritz
There were twice as many bicycles as cars headed downtown on San Francisco’s Market Street on the 14th annual Bike to Work Day. Bicyclists made up 64% of the eastbound traffic at Market St. & Van Ness Ave., while motorists comprised 32% between 8am and 9am today. (The remainder was transit vehicles and taxis). This is a nearly 31% increase over the number of people biking last year on Bike to Work Day. The counts were taken by the Municipal Transportation Agency.
One of those riding this morning was first-time bike commuter and mother of two, Ali Linder, who credits Bike to Work Day with motivating her to switch from driving or taking transit to pedaling from the Richmond District to the Embarcadero. "There were a ton of bicyclists out. It was fun to be a part of it, especially because it was a Spare the Air Day. I felt really good about not being in my car, and I got exercise during the time I'd normally be sitting down. I will definitely bike to work again."
A record number of city leaders bicycled to work including Supervisors Jake McGoldrick, Aaron Peskin, Carmen Chu, Ross Mirkarimi, Chris Daly, Sean Elsbernd, Bevan Dufty, and Gerardo Sandoval, as well as the heads of City departments, including Nat Ford of the Municipal Transportation Agency. They joined San Francisco Bicycle Coalition (SFBC) members on City Hall steps for a visual spectacle quantifying the financial, health and environmental benefits of bicycling.
“I’m thrilled to see so many people biking to work today. Thanks to growing interest in healthy, sustainable commuting and our efforts with the City to ensure that cyclists feel safe and welcome on the streets, more people are making the switch to biking,” says Leah Shahum, Executive Director of the 9,000-member SFBC.
Local bike shops also report seeing more people switching to bicycling. “Commute bicycling is clearly growing,” says Zack Stender, manager of Mike’s Bikes in San Francisco. “I talk daily to customers about the high cost of gas. People are feeling more comfortable on the streets because there are more people on bikes. There’s safety in numbers.”
Separated bike lanes proposed for S.F. Market Street
By Yokota Fritz
A group headed by the business-backed Market Street Association, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and the civic think tank San Francisco Planning & Urban Research Association is hatching a new idea to improve Market. The thought is to create dedicated bike lanes, physically separated from vehicles, such as has been done in Frankfurt, Germany; Copenhagen, Denmark; and closer to home in Eugene and Bend, Ore.
Proponents of that idea have sketched out a primitive design in which sidewalks and traffic lanes would be narrowed along some downtown segments of Market Street to accommodate a dedicated bike path.
By Yokota Fritz
As gas prices officially reached the $4 mark in San Francisco, Caltrain reported record weekday ridership of 36,993 for February 2008, a 9.3% increase over 2007.
I'm not as scientific as Caltrain, but I'm seeing substantially more cyclists on the Caltrain bike cars, many of them with shiny new bikes. If you're on the platform with your bike and don't have a clue what's going on, please feel free to ask the other people around what to do. The BayRail Alliance also updated their Caltrain Bike Tips page today. I provided some of the input for that tips page, including the mild suggestion to "the idiot" the train nearly hit yesterday morning.
Today is free ice cream cone day at Ben & Jerry's! Please also don't forgot to do the Cyclelicious survey.
Bay Area drivers driving fewer miles as public transit use increases.
By Yokota FritzSan Francisco Bay Area: Nominate a cyclist for bike commuter of the year.
Do you know someone in your community who is committed to making every day a Bike to Work Day? Does this person epitomize and actualize the health, environmental, social and economic benefits of bicycling? Please share his or her story with the San Francisco Bay Area Bicycle Coalition.
By Yokota Fritz
Here's an interesting article [PDF] on "The Great San Francisco bicycle protest of 1896."
Since the 1880’s, riders across the country had lobbied for access to the streets. Increasingly organized, their mission was political and social as cycling became a way of life. Bicyclists demonstrated in large American cities, including Chicago, where wheelmen and wheelwomen held riding exhibitions and mass meetings, forcing the city to withdraw a rail franchise for a west end boulevard.
Cyclists were encouraged to decorate their wheels, citizens along the route to decorate their properties, with prizes offered for the finest display. A few men rode in drag, one “in the togs of a Midway Plaisance maiden,” another as an old maid. Uncle Sam rode in bloomers next to a down-home hayseed.There were meaner stereotypes: Sitting Bull and Pocahontas; a man in bloomers mocking “the new women;” one in blackface; one “imitating a Chinese in silks and slippers.”
Approaching Powell and Market, “the cyclists encountered a surging mass of humanity.” Bells of a dozen trapped streetcars added to the chaos.When the number 21 car got too close to one division, some in the crowd began rocking it, attempting to overturn it.
Update: See the transcript here. It has pictures! The stuff in this article below is boring and dull.
KQED is the local public broadcasting station in San Francisco. The topic for the 9 A.M. "Forum" show was on bicycle safety.
Leah Shahum, executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition
Sean Co, bicycle and pedestrian planner for the Metropolitan Transportation Commission.
Sean Comey, spokesman for the AAA of Northern California.
Rob Anderson, the blogger who filed suit holding up implementation of the San Francisco bicycle plan.
When I tuned in, AAA spokesman Comey (who says he rides a bike), instructed cyclists to be more careful and "cyclists need to act as ambassadors. You need to follow the rules of the road. Motorists are protected by a ton of steel and latest in engineering and technology, but cyclists are out in the open," he reminds us. "You are very vulnerable. When I ride, I expect motorists to not see me and I watch for the unexpected. I watch for doors and people pulling out." Comey gave some good advice, but it's rich that this spokesmen for motorists tells cyclists to be ambassadors, when he should be doing the same thing on behalf of motorists. There's at least as much bad behavior from motorists as there is from cyclists.
Shahum reminds Comey of this when she reminds Comey and KQED listeners that "drivers of large vehicles have a grave responsibility to take care" in their driving.
Host Michael Krasny asked if road conditions are a factor in safety. MTA planner Co responded that "90% of collisions are due to human factors. If you throw money into improving roads and other engineering, you can only get so much in return. The most important thing is changing behavior."
Rob Anderson joined the show for a short time. Anderson cites the figure from the 2000 Census showing that only 2% of commutes in SF are by cyclists and he said, "I don't see any increased number of bicycles in The City." Anderson doesn't believe that money and space should be given to a mode of transportation that's used by only a tiny minority of the population.
Shahum, though, retorts that "According to Anderson we shouldn't have sidewalks, we shouldn't have transit. That's a very archaic way of thinking." Because of issues with climate change, air pollution, and much higher energy prices, "We have to think about other ways to get around." Shahum also cites figures from a November 2007 study and traffic count showing that "16% of San Francisco adults -- that's 120,000 people -- bicycle in The City for transportation at least once a week." She also makes the comparison that "if you look at one person in a car versus one person on a bike versus 30 people on a bus, motorists take a disproportionate amount of space."
Host Krasny then spoke with Nick Carr of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, asking him about the progress of the city bicycle plan. Carr said, "we're completing the environmental analysis" and that "I've seen very noticeable growth in cycling in San Francisco." He then plugged MTA's work with the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition in Bike Ed to "teach folks what they need to know so they're not operating a bike in ignorance. Bike Ed is like a driver training class for cyclists. Also Bike To Work Day is coming up so we're starting to promote that." When asked about Critical Mass, "Critical Mass is still out there. We don't hear too many complaints like used we used to. One thing San Francisco has going for them is the exposure of cyclists on the streets, which makes it safer for them."
Krasny started taking some calls at this point.
Call John from San Bruno is a cyclist who bikes into the city. "Cyclists really need to obey the traffic laws" and "they need to be more visible." He pushes Robert Hurst's (excellent) Art of Cycling book. Leah's response: "It's the scofflaws you notice, whether its cyclists or motorists or walkers. It's not a bicycle issue, it's a human nature issue and it's applicable to any mode of transportation." In city counts at 30 intersections, Shahum said they count violations as well as just absolute counts, and during these counts the violators are not the majority. 600 people in the Bay Area are killed by motorists every year, so its clear that the main problem is not scofflaw cyclists but scofflaw motorists.
Caller Helen complains about cyclists on Cesar Chavez in San Francisco, because the road is there for motorists to get on the freeway. Leah Shahum gets animated, responding that "those lanes are not designated motorists only -- they are for all traffic, including cyclists." Shahum explains the concept of "taking the lane" -- where cyclists ride in the middle of the lane to increase their visibility and protect themselves -- and exhorts Helen to "hang back and give them room."
Another caller complains about bike lanes on Guerrero St, how replacing traffic lanes with bike lanes backs traffic up and he ends up taking side streets instead of main boulevards. He advocates instead for bike boulevards (like in Berkeley and Palo Alto) where side streets have traffic calming features that limit motor traffic but allow for easy bicycle access. Shahum notes that in the case of Guerrero Street that it was the local residents who wanted traffic calming engineering, with a median added and a traffic lane removed to discourage traffic on that street.
Krasny brought up comments from emails received during the show, of cyclists who blow through stop signs and don't signals, of motorists who do the same, etc.
Caller Randall said cyclists should have a different set of laws. "Many laws are created for the convenience of motorists, not for the safety of bicycles," he said.
Derek Liecty of the East Bay Bicycle Coalition called in to encourage listeners in the East Bay to attend one of the many bicycle safety classes that teaches people to "ride a bicycle like a car to reduce accidents." He also said every cyclist should read John Forester's Effective Cycling book.
Michael is a cabbie in San Francisco and a frequent caller to Krasny's show. He talked about his recent trip to China, where people of all ages and types ride to get around. He compared it to California where, "there are so many pickup trucks and one person SUVs that it's just embarrassing." In 30 years of driving a taxi in The City, "I've never been in an accident with a bicycle. I always watch for cyclists and I always give the right of way. I try to be courteous but even then I still sometimes get the middle finger from some cyclists."
As the hour closed, Shahum mentioned a study from the Netherlands showing that twice as many motorists as cyclists are killed per mile of travel and that the health benefits of cycling outweigh the risk of accidental death 20 to 1.
Finally, Krasny asked about helmets, and Comey (the AAA guy) brought up the completely discredited and ridiculous "helmets reduce serious injury and death by 85%" figure, which isn't even used by the helmet lobby anymore.
The number of San Francisco bike riders rose by 15 percent from 2006 to 2007, according to a report by The City’s bicycle program.
In the study, which will be presented today at the Bicycle Advisory Committee, observers from the Municipal Transportation Agency’s Bicycle Program counted 6,454 cyclists on the streets during sample days in August 2007, which is 800 more than noted in 2006, the first year of the bicycle counting program.
By Yokota Fritz
Remember, Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority has big changes in routes and scheduling that begin Monday morning, January 14, 2008. While VTA will provide more frequent service on a number of bus lines and convert a number of routes to "Community Bus Service" using smaller buses, several routes have also been eliminated, shortened and combined with other routes. Route 60, for example, will not continue south beyond the Winchester Transit Center, and Route 22 will no longer serve the Menlo Park Caltrain Station. Visit the VTA website (which has been significantly redesigned) for details. Public transportation to MacWorld Apple fans heading to the annual Macworld Conference and Expo at the Moscone Center Jan. 14 – 18 can focus on technology rather than traffic and parking by taking Caltrain to The City.
Attendees of the week-long conference will find Caltrain’s 96 weekday trains a convenient way to avoid the city’s traffic and parking hassles. All northbound trains end at the San Francisco Caltrain Station at Fourth and King streets. From there, passengers can either walk to Moscone Center, approximately six blocks away, or they can catch either of Muni’s 30 or 45 lines, which stop right across from the train station on Fourth Street. They can get off at Third and Folsom, and the Moscone Center is just a block away at 747 Howard St.
The last southbound train leaves San Francisco at 12:01 a.m., which leaves plenty of time for the most ardent Mac user to spend a full day at the expo and spend some time sight-seeing or dining in The City as well.
Secure bicycle parking is available at the new bike station at the 4th & King Caltrain Station in San Francisco. Caltrain schedule and fare information is available at Caltrain website. Leave a comment here at Cyclelicious if you have a specific question about riding Caltrain.
BART considers increased bike lockers fees
The Bay Area Rapid Transit system considered increasing the annual locker fees charged at BART stations and introducing an hourly charge for lockers with electronic locks. For details, read the Examiner.
Infrequent BART users should also be warned that BART recently changed its service to SFO Airport. You can no longer head straight to SFO from Millbrae Caltrain, but now must go to San Bruno then backtrack to the airport. Regular travelers to SFO have discovered it's faster to get off Caltrain in Hillsdale then take a bus to the airport.
By Yokota Fritz
This is for all of you bicycle commuters who neglect to check the weather forecast (and you know who you are) -- three storms systems are barreling down from Alaska with two to four inches of rain forecast in Santa Clara valley and up the Peninsula into San Francisco beginning Thursday at noon. On Friday, 20 to 30 mph winds gusting to 50 mph are expected throughout the Bay Area and coastal areas. Up to ten inches on rain is expected in the Santa Cruz Mountains (where I live) over the weekend, with snow falling as low as 2,500 feet.
As the storms move east over the Sierra Mountains, the snow is expected to fall in crippling volumes. "They could see up to eight to 10 feet [of snow] by Sunday," Weather Service Meteorologist Steve Anderson. "It's going to be a major winter storm with white-out, blizzard conditions, winds up to 100 miles per hour on the peaks and around 50 miles per hour down on Interstate 80," he says.
Ken Conley is a bike nut and up and coming photographer of cycling events. He covers California bike races in his "Spare Cycles" blog, which I highly highly recommend. Right now he's offering prints of his work for purchase.
By Yokota Fritz
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and other cyclist activists rallied today on the steps of city hall to protest the sluggish progress of the court-mandated environmental review of the city bike plan.
The city revealed recently that the review would not be complete until 2009, with expected implementation of the bike plan on hold until 2010.
Roughly 100 people showed up as San Francisco Bicycle Coalition Executive Director Leah Shahum spoke encouraging city leaders to put a larger priority on the bike plan. The SFBC continues to encourage cyclists to contact Mayor Gavin Newsom and the city supervisors to urge them to speed up implementation of the bike plan.
Last year, blogger Rob Anderson and his "Coalition for Adequate Review" put a stop to San Francisco's bike plan when he filed suit against the city, arguing that any transportation changes must undergo an Environmental Impact Review. Judge James Warren agreed and completely stopped all new bike projects in the city with an injunction prohibiting any new bicycle facilities of any kind in San Francisco.
Now we have the news that the city does not expect to complete the required environmental review until spring 2009, with re-adoption of the bike plan in the summer of 2009. The city cannot even install bike racks for parking or racks on buses until this environmental review is completed. The San Francisco Bike Coalition urges action and asks San Francisco cyclists to call the Mayor and Board of Supervisors to encourage them to make this a higher priority.
This device will be switched on TOMORROW night, Thursday the 11th, at PRECISELY 7:30pm. Once activated, the undead hordes will be unable to resist its pull, and will gather immediately at its base, where we will attempt to neutralize them before they can once again terrorize our fair city.
NOTE: Great care must be taken with this operation, as a San Francisco Mayoral debate will be taking place in the Main Library. If we are unable to contain the zombies, it is highly likely that they will turn their attention to the hundreds of citizens exiting the debate at 7:45, whom, though disenfranchised, are not disembrained, and may thus prove irresistible to the shambling cerebrophiles. (Thankfully, zombies DO NOT attack or otherwise harass innocent bystanders. Their moans and sheer numbers are more than horrifying enough.)
By Yokota Fritz
With average traffic speeds of 10 mph or less on 60% of downtown San Francisco streets, transportation officials are considering congestion pricing to discourage driving and encourage other modes of transportation.
By Yokota Fritz
The San Francisco Metropolitan Transportation Commission, BART, Caltrain, and the California High Speed Rail Authority are unveiling a new blueprint for expanding the system of passenger and freight rail in the San Francisco Bay Area. A series of public meetings in the area will show the proposals to move people and freight through the region in the next 50 years and describe how the regional rail network works in conjuction with the proposed California high-speed rail, along with proposed alternatives for how high speed rail will come into the Bay Area.
The San Francisco Bay Area Regional Rail website includes interactive maps that describe the regional rail network. See the website for a schedule of open houses and presentations that begin today in Oakland, San Jose, Suisun City, Livermore and San Carlos.
San Francisco cops tell cyclists to "take the lane" for safety.
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and the San Francisco Police Department worked to create this outstanding police training video on the rights and responsibilities of cyclists in San Francisco. Cyclists are instructed to ride "about four feet away from parked cars when you're riding your bicycle," to report instances of driver intimidation, and report injury accidents. This video is used at the San Francisco Police Academy and at district stations around the city.
By Yokota FritzTraffic demand management is a big deal at major events in San Francisco, where parking is at a premium. When locals go watch the San Francisco Giants play at AT&T Park, many of them take Caltrain and SF Muni right to the stadium. Bike Valet Parking provided by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is also heavily used. See the Streetsblog video of how it works.
Forbes Magazine reports on the how unhealthy our long commutes are. "It's a lifestyle choice," says David Rizzo, author of Survive the Drive! How to Beat Freeway Traffic in Southern California. "We put our health second. To have a big house, we're willing to put up with smog and a big drive. We sacrifice our longevity for short-term gains."
Warm Planet Bicycles has opened a new bike parking service at the 4th & King Caltrain station in San Francisco. The 1600 square foot facility is provided free to use and has room for up to 100 bicycles. See photos of the new facility in Jym Dyer's Flickr pool.
Longtime bicycling advocacy Alex Zuckermann died in his Berkeley home on Sunday. He was 86 years old. He founded the East Bay Bicycle Coalition 35 years ago to make the Bay Area more bicycle friendly and continued his advocacy until his death. For insights into his life and spirit, see these old letters from the San Francisco Chronicle:
Caltrain has begun a series of bicycle workshops as a part of the Bicycle Master Plan process. Each bicycle workshop is a one-hour tour at a Caltrain station with staff to discuss bicycle parking, bicycle access to and within the station area, and way-finding. To register, contact Celia Chung at (650) 508-6388 or chungc (at) samtrans.com. The schedule for remaining workshops are.
Station Date / Time Register By San Jose Diridon Tues 8/14 6 PM 8/9 Thu Redwood City Wed 8/22 6 PM 8/17 Fri Palo Alto Wed 8/29 6 PM 8/24 Fri San Francisco Thur 9/6 6 PM 8/31 Fri Hillsdale Tues 9/18 5:30 PM 9/13 Thu Mountain View Thur 9/20 5:30 PM 9/17 Mon San Mateo Tues 9/25 5:30 PM 9/20 Thu Sunnyvale Thur 9/27 5:30 PM 9/24 Mon
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency reported that traffic counts showed more bicycles than cars on Bike To Work Day yesterday. Bicyclists made up 54% of the traffic on eastbound Market Street at Van Ness, compared to 42% for personal automobiles. The 647 cyclists counted at this location represents at 27% increase over last year. This is also double the normal number of cyclists at this location. Read more at the San Francisco Bike Coaltion.
Even Mayor Gavin Newson borrowed a bike from the local rental outfit and rode his bike for a photo op. "You should see the potholes in this town," the mayor said.
Jerry has already commented on this, but the San Francisco Critical Mass made the news this morning. According to the Chronicle a family from the Peninsula spent the day in The City. They encountered the tail end of Critical Mass. They apparently tried to drive through it. The hooligans on bikes proceeded do $5,300 worth of damage to the minivan. By Wednesday morning, the San Francisco Critical Mass gets some bad press, blog mentions, and rants on Craigslit.
According to several witnesses at the scene, however, the minivan driver "revved and swerved into the bicyclists, and tried to flee after hitting one. Bicyclists surrounded the vehicle while calling 911 to prevent a hit-and-run. One [hooligan] bicyclist smashed the rear window." And unlike the description given in the Chronicle editorial, by 9 p.m. the "Critical Mass" dwindles down to only a couple dozen riders -- hardly enough to create huge traffic jams, and certainly much less of an obstruction than that created by the regular automotive traffic.
It's horrible that this cyclist smashed the van's window with children inside. It's also horrible that this Mother committed assault and attempted hit-and-run with her own children in the van. From tonight's update of the story, the driver "recklessly accelerated into a crowd and hit the bicyclist so hard the bike was lodged under her vehicle." When somebody tries to kill you, then tries flees the scene, it's understandable why the cyclists got a little hot.
In the meantime, Bay Area motorists killed and maimed a half dozen or so people in the Bay Area and inflicted close to a million dollars in property damage. Motorists exchanged words with each other, people flipped the finger and called one another names, sometimes even in the presence of children. There were incidents of road rage, two of which resulted in deaths. Some of these incidents even made the news.
Regarding the actions of the one cyclist who broke the window: I know motorists can sometimes get you mad, but take it easy. You're on the bike to have fun; there's no need to get militant, negative, violent and angry. It's probably a good thing that some of us with rage issues aren't driving a car, because that only gives us the tool to inflict even more damage. Remember that the only behavior you can control is your own. Attempting to change somebody else's actions will only result in frustration.
After a protest organized by the Senior Action Network, San Francisco authorities announced they would step up enforcement of The City's ban on sidewalk cycling, which carries a $138 fine. Only children 12 years old and younger can legally ride their bikes on the sidewalk in San Francisco.
The Senior Action Network protested the presence of cyclists on sidewalks. "For years, pedestrians have been squeezed, shoved, intimidated and injured by bicyclists and motorists. The sidewalk is designated as a walkway, not a parking lot for cars or a bike lane for cyclists," said David Grant, executive director of Senior Action Network, which organized the event.
"Pedestrians in San Francisco have been killed and injured by bicyclists," said Michael Radetsky, injury-prevention coordinator for the San Francisco Department of Public Health. Since 2000, he said, there have been three reported deaths and more than 20 people injured badly enough to need hospitalization.
I've occasionally been guilty of this crime, but I totally understand the walkers' viewpoint. I've also been nearly plowed into by rude cyclists on busy sidewalks.
San Francisco to require bike rentals at bus shelters
By Yokota Fritz
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency is taking bids to build 1,500 bus shelters. A unique requirement for the bids: Up to 20 of the shelters must have facilities for a new bicycle-sharing program the city is considering. From the Chronicle:
The bicycles would be part of San Francisco's effort to become the first major U.S. city with a government-backed bike-sharing program, something that has caught on in Europe.
For years, San Francisco has had a transit-first policy intended to discourage commuters from driving to work. That's resulted in fewer parking garages, higher parking fees and fines, and new bicycle lanes on scores of streets.
Now comes the next step -- making bikes plentiful and accessible, and available on the same up-front fee model as the city's car-sharing program.
Most people use the bus to commute. So all the bikes would be needed at the same time and place. And if you live close enough to a bus stop for this to be convenient, you’re less likely to need a bike anyway.
Cars are expensive and take up a lot of space. Bikes are cheap and don’t take up a lot of space. So having an elaborate system to rent them and track who’s using one seems pointless.
But then he read about a similar bike rental system in Lyons, in which he learned that 22,000 bike rentals occur daily. "I think something like this could work in SF," Jim concludes.
Jim, by the way, is a member of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and a member of ZipCar. He also owns Kongregate, an online gaming portal with Web 2.0 community features. Think of it as a Flickr or YouTube for video games.
San Francisco bike thief photos
...i think i'm not a very nice person 'cuz i wouldn't feel too bad about seeing this guy get cracked hard across the knees w/ a baseball bat...
...& the knees, only to protect that pretty face...
..."they shoot horse thieves, don't they ???"...
Somebody pointed out this guy looks like Lemmy from Motorhead!
...hey...even if times are tough, i think lemmy would try stealin' a hog (uhhh, that would be a harley davidson, for the uninformed) rather than a bicycle...
...but ya never know...
...the "new"MOTORHEAD: we've gone green !!!...
Wow. He's even completely nasty looking. I think he *could* get a job in Hollyweird.
"Klunkerz" interviews on kqed.org on 6/24/09
SF Mayor Gavin Newsom announces bike share The impending failure of San Francisco's pilot Bike Share program
The implicit decision to compete with private bicycle rentals amazes me. It seems so "unAmerican"! (Note that "unAmerican" doesn't necessarily strike me as pejorative.)
I don't really see them as competing. The private rental companies in SF are all on the North Side of town focused on tourists going down Crissy Field to the bridge.
I just don't see the point of this level of program. If I were stuck downtown, I couldn't grab a bike and ride home, dropping the bike off at a location near my home because one would not exist. Very few actual trips would be point to point given where the rental locations are, and that's a lot of the success of the Paris program.
I guess that makes it no different from the private rentals after all!
SF Streetsblog now live and online
VIVA San Francisco Streetsblog
yes viva! thanks for the tip!!! xo.meli
BBC wants to interview senior cyclists in San Francisco
thanks for the info, I have a senior neighbor that rides to the market every morning. he is adorable and way beyond 50 ;)
Miss January 2009
Oh how cool. A calendar featuring women without the cheesecake factor.
I'm not sure I'd trust any mechanic, no matter how attractive, if they whipped out a giant adjustable wrench to adjust a headset. Kids these days!
Way cool, Suz!
San Francisco Sunday Streets
NPR Talk of the Nation: Rob Anderson and Noah Budnick
There was no debate. They brought Budnick on just before they were through with me. He said something lame about how planners, engineers, and experts agree on blah blah blah, and that was it. NPR, just like KQED, really dislikes any real controversy because, oh dear, that might lead to, like, some negative comments. NPR-type progressives will defend to the death your right to speak, as long as it doesn't make anybody else mad.
Yeah, I listened. I was a little disappointed to be honest. Thanks for dropping by, Mr Anderson. You came across reasonably well, as did Noah Budnick.
Who was the guy from Seattle, anyway? Do you know?
Budnick's point about transportation elasticity is well established, by the way. 50 years of ever expanding roads only proves that traffic will expand to fill the capacity provided. Since, as you noted in the show, that there's no room to expand in San Francisco, it's time to try something different.
The show was severely biased. Rob Anderson is notable only for filing a lawsuit to block a sensible public policy. He has no transportation experience or credentials. (Last week's Wall Street Journal article did a great job of portraying Anderson as the isolated eccentric.) Yet his remarks framed the entire conversation. Noah was valiant, but clearly on the defensive the entire program. And yes, the NPR reporter from Seattle was clearly unqualified to talk on this topic. They obviously picked him because of the recent Critical Mass incidents there. A laughable conversation. Bicycling deserves better than this.
Hi Paul -- I should mention that readers should see Paul's commentary about the Wall Street Journal article the other day.
"Budnick's point about transportation elasticity is well established, by the way. 50 years of ever expanding roads only proves that traffic will expand to fill the capacity provided."
We're not talking about "expanding roads" in SF; we're talking about the best use of existing streets. It's not the so-called experts who will determine how the city uses its streets; the people of SF's neighborhoods will ultimately make that decision.
I agree: bicycling deserves better than this.
=v= Is this guy like a broken record or what?
What was clear was that Anderson had zero idea what he was talking about.
Mayor Gavin and the rest of SF's political establishiment should be deeply embarrassed that they've allowed a crank like Rob Anderson to put a stop to the city's bike network plan.
Just do the EIS already and start building out the bike network. Anderson's a nut job and a know-nothing.
Talk of the nation is an absolutely lame program...Neil Conen is a twit. I can't stand the program or the people who call in. I wish the program would be cancelled as part of the economic catastrophy. I commute by bike from the Oakland hills to Alameda. It's a treacherous ride through many parts of the city...hostile motorists.
Rob Anderson says I ride because of political motivations
I've been saying the same thing myself over here in New Haven, Connecticut. The line shouldn't be drawn between "motorists" and "cyclists," but rather between "responsible, courteous and law-abiding road users" and "reckless, irresponsible and dangerous" ones.
That sort of pigeonholing is a major reason I DON'T participate in blatantly political things (like the B'more mayor going for a ride every Friday at 6AM with a bunch of agency heads). I ride for my own reasons, and while cycling does influence some of my politics, I don't want my presence on a bike to be seen as a political activity.
So... regardless of the obvious dangers, some Islamic fanaticists will engage in suicide bombings?
I mean, he got his point across, but I think the logical implication weakens his argument somewhat.
"Political reasons" is just a euphemism for "I don't like what you're doing" anyway, is it not?
...i find people like rob anderson to not only be counter productive but almost dangerous, in that his lack of understanding & personal extrapolations have led him to affect a process that would lead to safer cycling conditions for all...thus, one man's attitude has a counter effect on the lives of thousands...
...anderson is smart enough to know how to disrupt the whole picture, but not smart enough to see it clearly...myopic personal view...
...while "freedom of choice" may be the american way, sometimes common sense gets factored out by self righteousness (& their lawyers)...
...that thought not only applies to anderson's politics but works hand in hand w/ 'captain kickstand's' astute comment...
...i know you're admonishing us, yk, to "please be nice to those around you" but i think anderson is 'clue nada' & suffering from anal/cranial inversion...
Yeah, I saw this too. In general, I'm grateful for any coverage of bicycling; even if it's not entirely favorable. It's better to be noticed than ignored.
I might have preferred to see more from Leah Shahum--who is intelligent, responsible, and leads a 10,000-member organization--rather than so much from Rob Anderson, who is, as described in the article, a wingnut. The writer actually did a reasonably good job portraying him as a lonely eccentric, and the article illustrates a real problem of our polity when such lone nut jobs can derail sensible public policies.
Critical Mass is a high-visibility event. However, its traffic impact is minimal--generally causing only a few minutes delay to any individual motorist--compared to the delays routinely caused by the automotive "Critical Mass" each and every day.
Critical Mass as a once-monthly event is also far less significant in San Francisco politics than the everyday advocacy of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, which has been truly effective at gaining significant bicycling enhancements. I hope there's a follow up on this article at some point, with more coverage of the SFBC. (Lord knows I love Critical Mass, but it's clearly lost political significance.)
while a little on the extreme side, he has a point. There are people out there riding just to make a point and they love to tell you why they are better than you because they are car free.
You ride a bike - big freaking deal. Just ride, do your part and let others be. Unless they drive hummers or ride without helmets....
Stop me if you've heard this:
A Zen Teacher saw five of his students return from the market, riding their bicycles. When they had dismounted, the teacher asked the students, "Why are you riding your bicycles?" The first student replied, "The bicycle is carrying this sack of potatoes. I am glad that I do not have to carry them on my back!" The teacher praised the student, saying, "You are a smart boy. When you grow old, you will not walk hunched over, as I do." The second student replied, "I love to watch the trees and fields pass by as I roll down the path." The teacher commended the student, "Your eyes are open and you see the world." The third student replied, "When I ride my bicycle, I am content to chant, nam myoho renge kyo." The teacher gave praise to the third student, "Your mind will roll with the ease of a newly trued wheel." The fourth student answered, "Riding my bicycle, I live in harmony with all beings." The teacher was pleased and said, "You are riding on the golden path of non-harming." The fifth student replied, "I ride my bicycle to ride my bicycle." The teacher went and sat at the feet of the fifth student, and said, "I am your disciple."
Yeah, so I ride my bike to ride my bike. Sometimes I'm a cheapskate who wants to save a buck. Sometimes I'm a middle-aged guy fighting middle-aged spread. Sometimes...you get the idea.
We have a local shop owner who is a great guy, but who constantly posts messages to our local club's mailing list like 'every bike ride is a political act!' I just tell him to get a grip.
...ah, fixedgear...to stop a master when he recites a zen koan, even if one knows it's finish, would be to deprive at least two students of furthering their path to enlightenment...
...& no, personally i hadn't heard that version of a time honored parable...so i say, thank you for the gift...
...cycling has always been my zen path & my meditation, not because i looked to find it as such, but because it was already there...
...& paul dorn...while we may share many views on cycling, i find critical mass participants, for the most part, to be like the student monks who wandered into the open cellar while the master was away...they drank all the wine, only because no one stopped them...they made fools of themselves in their drunken zealousness & deprived the other students of the opportunity to enjoy both the wine & the lack of supervision in the future...
...unfortunately, some folks can't see past their front wheel...you sound experienced enough to know your way...too many don't & they represent us all...
Bicycling tourists in San Francisco
Sounds like a wonderful problem to have.
We need to have the problem that there are so many bikes, the infrastructure needs to grow to accommodate them :)
Send them across the country to Long Island NY.
They can ride the north and south fork of LI and take TWO different ferries to and from Shelter Island.
I'll even give them cue sheets.
@adriel -- yep. We're seeing that a lot of bike capacity issues in the SF Bay Area these days.
@Glenn -- We have 9 daily ferries from Sausalito to San Francisco. The cyclists can go a little farther north to the Larkspur terminal to catch one of nearly two dozen daily ferries from there to S.F.
Or they can just ride their bikes back to the City. The Golden Gate Bridge approach is very steep, however, and the ferry is a nice trip in itself. The Sausalito Ferry takes you right alongside Alcatraz Island. Your Bicycle Site looks interesting -- I'll need to browse around and take a look at it sometime. Any suggestions on where I should start?
Larkspur is not a simple ride, logistically, and most of these tourists are completely shot by the time they get to Sausalito. They rent the bikes somewhere in North Beach, and Lincoln Ave up to the Bridge causes some near coronaries.
The canonical place to take the ferry back from is actually Tiburon - that's not too tricky to get to. Larkspur requires some tricky spots.
Bay Area bicycle and transportation news
San Francisco Film Festival
Bay Area Folding bike festivel
Are they going to have ride - fold and sit - unfold and ride races like they did in Philly and across the pond? I feel like such a trendsetter - I got one in February :)
Leah Shahum on talk radio TODAY
Audio available via the "Your Call" website:
San Francisco cycling fashion
SF Quake City Rumble July 3-6, 2008
San Francisco bicyclist survey
Wow, 10 percent! That is really high. I wonder what percentage of urban cyclists claim to ride on the sidewalk occasionally.
I thought 10% was high too. Sidewalk riding is fairly common in SF, where the sidewalks are also heavily used by walkers.
This stat is "horse-hockey". The "Cyclists" hitting pedestrians are crackheads on Market between 4th and 9th, oftentimes riding a freshly stolen bike to sell to a slightly less crack-addled fellow who will try to fence it up the line.
I ride on the sidewalk generally for one of two reasons only.
1) Leaving the road for my final destination (home, business, etc...)
2) Bypassing an obstacle - usually a garbage truck with 3 cars lined out behind it and a line of oncoming traffic on the left. I will use the sidewalk occasionally to make a right on red into a road with a bike lane, when a right on red turning car has pinched the curb and is blocked by backed up traffic on the cross street - but only if there are no pedestrians.
As a frequent pedestrian, I am aware of pedestrians when I bike, including those cretins that did not learn "Don't run out into the middle of the block between two parked cars". Everytime I see this happen I briefly tell myself I am going to run over their foot, then I decide that if they insist that they will only learn this lesson the hard way, I will let a car teach that lesson to them.
...if 10% said they had been concerned about, frightened by or had what 'they' consider to be a 'close call' w/ a cyclist on a sidewalk, i'd still be somewhat skeptical of that number...
Riding on the sidewalk is illegal - Isn't there a ~$200 fine for riding on the sidewalk in SF? Not that it's enforced. Hah.
Twice as many bikes as cars on Market Street
that's amazing! though i think your title is flip-flopped.
Oh yeah, you're right. In too much of a hurry!
If I can get the publishing software to work this should be fixed now. Thank you Jessica.
Bay Area bicycle discussion forum
I'm all for local sites and all, but isn't it a little overboard that a brand new, nearly empty site heralds itself as "San Francisco Bay Area's number one bicycle forum"?
It looks like these guys completely ripped off bikeforums.net. Looking at the forum descriptions, I thought they looked familiar:
Road cycling: BF: The road bike is the most efficient machine known to man. There is nothing like riding a nice road bike, on a nice road. Chat it up with other roadies in our road cycling forum. Bikeness: There is nothing like riding a nice road bike, on a nice road. Find other roadies in our road cycling forum
Commuting: BF: Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work. Bikeness: It's easier than you think. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, and safety requirements for riding your bike to work.
Charity: BF: Whether you're looking for riders, sponsors, or volunteers, this is the place to tell the world that cyclists can make a difference. Bikeness: Riders, sponsors, and volunteers making a difference in this world
Mechanics: BF: Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance. Bikeness: If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.
This is some pretty blatant plaigarism not to mention very poor taste. How did they think people would not notice?
IMO steer clear of these guys and chat on the BF Northern Cal forum instead; there's a lively group of friendly riders and good community.
I'm sending this comment to BF admin Joe Gardner in addition to the Bikeness forum admin.
Separated bike lanes proposed for S.F. Market Street
With all the intersections on Market Street, many of them complex and angular, it's going to be quite a trick to design functional sidepaths.
That's kind of what I thought, too.
"sidepath" -- that was the word I was hunting for. (I was in a hurry when I posted and couldn't retrieve the word!)
...this will be interesting to see how it plays out on the sf political front... ...& you gents are quit right...on the physical level, it's gonna be a real fuster cluck, no doubt...
Aside from the design challenge, there's also the lawsuit against the SF Bike Plan that forced the city to do a full environmental impact report. Bike-related infrastructure in SF is on hold for another year or so until that's settled.
Bike newbies on Caltrain
...never having ridden the train w/ my bike, i hadn't thought of all the concerns involved but reading the regs was interesting...& who better to help them draw up the tips & information page...
...does this kinda procedure usually run fairly smooth, fritz...
Yeah, it's usually fairly smooth and the rules aren't that difficult, but it can be a little intimidating for the newbies I'm sure.
You're lucky to have all-bike cars on trains. Metra (Chicago) hates cyclists and one conductor shoved me off the steps when I started to bring my **folding** bike on the train. Why they don't gut the seats from a single car and allow all-bike cars all the time is beyond me. Don't they want to increase ridership?? They suck!
Bay Area: Bike commuter of the year 2008
Critical Mass in 1896Cyclists were encouraged to decorate their wheels
And dudes dressing in drag, too. I thought the whole thing was fascinating to read.
KQED Forum on bicycle safety - show notes
Looks like they'll probably have a podcast up tomorrow - normally takes a day or so to get it on the site. Link: http://feeds.feedburner.com/kqedforum
Thanks for that, Mr Radio Guy.
=v= Leah only touched on this briefly, but the 2000 Census figures were skewed. Intermodal bike journeys were counted as train (BART and Caltrain) or bus (Golden Gate Transit) commutes. People who bike commuted less than 3 days a week were not counted at all, nor were those who made non-commute journeys.
This has been explained to Mr. Anderson in as few syllables as possible, but he clearly has no interest in accuracy.
I have to say I frequently give cabbies the finger. It doesn't matter if they did anything wrong this time- they certainly have before. Cabbies are scummier than musicians! Sorry Michael!
Why would they even have this Rob Anderson idiot on? He has nothing to do with bicycle safety, other than wanting all bikes off the street so his car won't get scratched!
...seems to be a certain amount of give & take amongst the participants w/ the exception of anderson, who is a clown w/ an agenda... ...unfortunately, he's a dangerous clown because he has learned just enough to interrupt the system but not enough to realize how many lives he is actually disrupting w/ his limited viewpoint...
the 2000 census figures are skewed in a different way. the question is something like ~in the past week, did you bicycle to work~. The question is asked in march, not as popular to cycle in many regions of the US (snow, ice, and darkness are not good for the popularity of this transit mode). Tucson and San Francisco, both tending to have fair march weather have the highest census numbers in the nation.
Also Rob Anderson has said before - he does not own a car. He's a ped and rides muni.
He's committed to fighting cyclists. Worse he claims that he's actually helping them because cycling is SO DANGEROUS that crash rates actually decline when there's a higher population of cyclists.
More bike riders in San Francisco in 2007
VTA: Big route and schedule changes on Monday
No time to cycle, I'm too busy being king of the world!
I'm so honored the CEO of Microsoft visited! Check out his zany blog, all.
SF Bay Area: rain Rain RAIN RAIN. And wind, too.Fun!
Yeah yeah yeah, I know....
It rains just hard enough to get wet, and it's usually a cold rain around here so you're miserable if you're not in rain gear. I've been out on days with rain forecast for the afternoon, and in the morning all the bike commuters are in their normal bike commute clothes like nice slacks, dress shirts, and good shoes. In the evening I see them covered up in plastic trash bags with holes for their heads and arms.
I hope it has enough momentum to drop a bunch on Minnesota. I would love some more snow.
There's no such thing as bad weather, just poor choice in clothes.
Enjoy the misting...
Bay Area bicycle blogs
Indeed I did. But Sacramento is good too.
Thanks for the link to my blog SF Cyclotouring. I have aggregated several bike-related blogs at the iBOB Metablog, some of which are in the SF Bay Area, e.g.: Black Mountain Cycles, a great new shop in Pt. Reyes Station and the Wheelgirl blog from the Wheelgirl Bike Shop in Berkeley.
I believe Paul Dorn's Bike Commute Tips Blog is out of SF, and Smudgemo's You Just Don't Want To is an Oakland area blog.
East Bay Bicycle Coalition web site has blogs.
Pick Up the Podium. Catch A CamelBak Podium Bottle From Team Saunier Duval-Scott and Win Prizes at the Tour of California
250 Bottles, Multiple Prizes: One lucky Fan Who Catches the Podium Will Win a Carbon Addict SL Frameset By Scott Bicycles
Win a prize while you watch along the route of the Tour of California! CamelBak, Team Saunier Duval – Scott, and Scott Bicycles are working together to spread the news about CamelBak’s new sustainable bottle marketing campaign “Choose to Re-Use.” Team Saunier Duval - Scott will be tossing race fans their new and re-usable CamelBak Podium Bottles as they compete during each stage of the Tour of California, February 17 - 24. Team Saunier Duval-Scott Podium Bottles will be redeemable for prizes including one Grand Prize, a Carbon Addict SL Frameset By Scott Bicycles. Other prizes include 5 pairs of Scott Pro Carbon Road shoes and assorted CamelBak gear.
If you catch it, you win it! In addition to receiving a new innovative, reusable bike bottle to take home, winning Podium Bottles will be marked with a special sticker located on the bottom of select bottles. One lucky spectator who picks up the Grand Prize Team Saunier Duval-Scott CamelBak Podium Bottle during the race will win a 790 gram Addict Sl Carbon Frameset from Scott Bicycles, valued at $3199.99.
Bottle catchers will be encouraged to email prize codes to a specific CamelBak email address provided on each Podium Bottle before 12:00 pm PST, Friday February 29, 2008, to see if they are the Grand Prize Winner. Visit Camelbak.com to see official rules and regulations.
Love your blog. You do us locals proud!
Come join our Northern California Blogger Network..http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=81379964792&ref=mf
hey.. i just started a blog to catalogue some of the rides around marin county and the bay area.. google hasn't crawled it yet, as since i'm new to blogging, i'm still figuring out how to make it searchable and such. http://baildownworld.blogspot.com/
Here are two more to add to the list:
Girl on Bike (Berkeley) http://girlonbikewrites.blogspot.com
Bike Man Dan (Oakland) http://www.bikemandan.com/blog/
great reading and useful stuff.. enjoyed reading your post.. thanks
San Francisco bike plan rally
San Francisco bike plan on hold two more years
...that's rather harsh...a plan that would serve & benefit thousands of sf cyclists' is put aside indefinitely because one cantankerous curmudgeon, who takes issue w/ anything cycling related, happens to know the procedure for stymieing progress...
...selfish move, anderson...
San Francisco zombie alert!
San Francisco bicycle film festival continues...
San Francisco considers congestion pricing
San Francisco limousine
A new favorite photo for my portfolio. Probably two people in it.
EVERYONE RUN TO THE FRONT OF THE LIMO!
Perfect! May it RIP for years to come. Jack
Where's your SUV god now?
Oh, but they did it in style! LOL
Ha Ha Ha. Nice shot.
The driver must have miscalculated it. He must have thought he is driving a sedan. lol.
San Francisco cyclist photos
Bay Area Regional Rail plans
SFPD bicycle training video
Yes a step in the right direction. However, rules and enforcement are two different things... let us know when the latter is used to defend and support cyclists' rights. Thanks, Jack
We need an initiative like that here in Melbourne. There is quite a bit of agro between motorists and cyclists at the moment.
A few criticisms:
1. San Francisco Police Officers - not that good at acting.
2. "I'll catch up to the motorist, you catch up to the guy on the bicycle." simply means "I'm going to stop up here, you go ALL THE WAY down the street to get that guy". He was greedy by taking the easy catch.
3. When the police officer catches up to the guy down the street, if you look further down the street, there is a car parked facing the wrong direction. I know in many cities that is an offense that can be ticketed.
4. "Bet you coffee" is illegal gambling. The police are not setting a good example.
5. At 6:16 remaining, there is obviously a car with it's hazards on in the bike lane.
6. At 4:56 remaining, you can clearly see the same car parked illegally in the street.
7. The cyclist who was intimidated should have kept what was thrown at him. A littering fine would add insult to injury.
8. The girl hit that hit the car is wearing a microphone on her sweatshirt. Seems sketchy, maybe she's working undercover for the SFPD in some type of insurance fraud scheme.
9. When the group exclaims "Bikes Belong In Traffic, Share The Road", they are obviously taking up the entire road. This can create an unsafe environment for all and is probably illegal.
In all seriousness, it's a great training video for SFPD.
A good initiative. Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed it very much. Let's hope that drivers get a taste of it as well.
Thanks for the post; cool video. It would be nice if they'd include something along those lines in driver's education courses. I've had 3 kids go through driver's ed and none of them have every gotten any information on how to drive around cyclists. I'll try to remember this link for the next 2 kid sessions.
Three CONSTRUCTIVE criticisms:
1) Dooring is NOT the most common bike/car crash. The left-turning car clipping the opposite-direction bike is the MOST common.
2) NOBODY, cops included, is using rear-view mirror.
3) If bikes are allowed the FULL use of traffic lanes, wat up with da bike lanes? Suppose SF just lose 'em!
Bay Area bicycle newsBigHUGE MONSTROUS bicycle weekend in San Francisco
DAMMIT. Santa's stuck in Tulsa, Oklahoma til July.
I'm here now for a Spoon concert, just happens to coincide with monstrous bicycle weekend;)
The wear a helmet part is important -- especially for the pillow fight.
THANKS for the link to Paul Dorn's comments... they're great! They should be read and understood by all cycling advocates.
San Francisco: More bicycles than cars on Bike To Work Day
This a great outcome. The bicycle message is slowly getting through.
BikesThatFold.com - All about Folding Bikes.
FORTUNATELY, Tulsa's Mayor simply exhorted city employees to ride on BTW Day, and didn't even bother to ride herself. She looks ridiculous in spandex.
Wow! Nothing like that here. I really didn't see anything out of the normal around town.
We have a weight loss challenge thing going on at work, and they didn't even mention Bike to Work Week. Lots to accomplish around these parts!
Wow, more bikes than cars. that is like a dream come true for an American city.
Nice BTWD photos Fritz. I am still kicking myself for forgeting my camera.
I didn't notice -- I guess I am too far from the parade grounds.
San Francisco: The minivan vs critical mass
I heard that when the police arrived and asked how it all started, the cyclist who supposedly was "hit" by the driver told the police that he was only tapped by the van and that he was fine and didn't know why other cyclists did what they did to the minivan.
Having only heard about Critical Mass, my feeling is that is does no good for the bicycle culture. To me I feel like it is likened to the Hells Angels bike rally. If bicycling is to be respected, is Critical Mass the proper action to be taken??? Can anyone correct me or comment on this???
The anecdotes that I've heard from SF locals make me favor the minivan driver here. Critical Mass is less a protest and more an invitation to bicycle hooliganism.
Thanks for the other side of the story fritz. In response to "anonymous", if I were deliberately "tapped" by a car when I was riding my bike, I would be furious, and I would hope that fellow cyclists came to my defense. That said, I would agree that CM was devolved into something more malicious than was originally intended.
A. Hells Angels conduct themselves better in public than CM does.
B. Attacking a Motor Vehicle with a GMVW of about 30 time yours, with a bicycle is a really, really good way to get hurt very badly. The only real choice is to call 911 and report a Hit and Run. Since no 911 call was placed (except by the van driver). I suspect there was not a hit and run at all.
C. Good thing there were not Hells Angels in the van huh. :)
My account of this incident: This was towards the end of the ride (after splitting off and dissipating). We had about 30 people by the time we were leaving Japantown when I heard a noise, which I could even hear over the music, and I turned my head to see a minivan on my left just having run over a bike and saw the rider on the ground. Riders nearby yelled at the driver to stop and the minivan just sped away. Many people in the ride chased after the van and surrounded it after catching up with it at the red light. The driver had her hand pressed on the horn the entire time. The cops got there pretty much right away as they were following right behind us. I rode away with the rest of the ride but some people stayed behind to deal with the cops. I didn't see the rear window get smashed but I can say that I only saw the couple sitting in the front of the minivan as the rest of the windows were heavily tinted and we could not see that there was anyone else in the vehicle.
If anyone cares, you can see that the windows were tinted in this video of the awful KRON4 news report: http://tinyurl.com/27v4pf
Upcoming rides for those interested:
April 6th - Oakland Critical Mass (every first friday) 6pm @ Frank Ogawa Plaza (12th St. BART entrance on Broadway & 14th St)
April 13th - Berkeley Critical Mass (every second friday) 6pm @ Downtown Berkley BART on Shattuck Ave
April 20th - Walnut Creek Critical Mass (every third friday) 6pm @ Walnut Creek BART
April 27th - San Francisco Critical Mass (every last friday) 6pm @ Justin Herman Plaza (near Embarcadero BART on Market St.)
Let's hope the San Francisco news media strives for fair and balanced reporting to put this issue in perspective, instead of relying on the one-source hysterics of the Chronicle columnists.
It looks like allegations of the minivan "striking" the bicyclist are bullshit. Notice how there is no mangled bike or injured cyclist.
For vandalizing the minivan, as well as other incidents of vandalism, and for blocking people in cars from peaceably going where they will, it sounds to me like these "Critical Mass" maggots need to be run down with SUVs and killed for their crimes.
Bike said: "If anyone cares, you can see that the windows were tinted in this video of the awful KRON4 news report:"
GOSH YES! If only the cyclists could see whether children were in the car, this wouldn't have happened! Bullshit. The cyclists are just lucky the van wasn't full of gang members from South Central LA.
You morons are NOT helping the sport of cycling!
Critical Mass, intially had lofty and laudable goals, has been taken over by a bunch of anarchists whose purpose is to propagate chaos.
Resorting to terrorism hardly seems in line with their goals.
Critical mass in san francsico is not a protest but a celebration of riding, and it raises awareness in others. It mostly frustrates drivers because they feel powerless to go where they want when they want. For all the folks that feel it is giving bike riding a bad rap - I suggest you try it first, and for all the drivers that get angry waiting for it to pass, I suggest you depersonalize it and take it as a chance to slow down - if you get angry everytime something gets in your way then you're going to spend your whole life angry.
San Francisco Police to enforce cyclist sidewalk prohibition
San Francisco to require bike rentals at bus shelters
Oh those SanFran happy campers are at it again, eh?
I am just trying to get Tulsa Transit to re-design the bus shelters to protect patrons, NOT the landscaping.
Most bus shelters expose waiting patrons to traffic noise, spray from tires slicing through curb-side water, and other unplesantries from moving traffic.
King County Transit, WA has a nifty idea: rotate the conventional bus shelter 180 degrees. DUH. What will they think of next?
I believe that Toronto has a similar program of bike share as you will find a small reference to in this post from Lauren's site.
I'll add this -- sad press about the Toronto Bike Share program.
Yep. Looks good on paper. But, if the market rejects it, it's TOAST. Say, how about try bike parking at the bus shelters?