To my knowledge that makes Santa Monica, Culver City and West Hollywood that by law insist bicycles ride in the streets. It is good law but automobile drivers should be aware that a bicyclist have a right and are obeying the law when they ride along with cars in the roadway.
As a cyclist who rides far too fast for sidewalks but still slower then cars (when it's not rush hour) I am often erked by people who yell, "Get out of the Street" or "This aint no bike lane." Additionally, many cyclist don't know or are afraid to ride in the street.
This is why I am strongly in favor of sharrows which let drivers know not only that is is OK for a cyclist to be there but also to be aware that there may be slower moving vehicles in the traffic lane.
Often bikelanes can not be accommodated by the width of the roadway or are placed in the door zone of parked cars. Sharrows don't have this problem.
Sharrows are a great solution. But I don't think bicycling in the street will be popular for the same reason motorcycles are but a niche. It's simply scary to ride around exposed next to heavy vehicles. Even if everybody drove with respect for cyclists (like the way I drive), human beings are still fallible and there will still be accidents. And when those accidents happen, the bike (and motorcycles) are at a huge disadvantage.
Post by tonyw79sfv on Jul 28, 2009 22:31:08 GMT -8
As a noob motorcycle rider who has been through every mode of transportation in LA, I don't find it scary to ride a motorcycle in the streets as opposed to a bicycle; it's also very easy to outrun cars on a decent motorcycle although I do cut in front of cars, I'd always stay in the back of larger vehicles and buses unlike most idiot car drivers that cuts large vehicles off (I guess car drivers fears no consequences being crushed by trucks and buses).
I've ridden bicycles on the sidewalks of Santa Monica before, but now would be more vigilant as to not get a ticket (just as I should be vigilant about lane splitting on a motorcycle). I could not fathom riding a bicycle on the streets unless automobile traffic is congested and not likely to run me over. I also would not want to hold back cars, and especially buses (as an avid Metro rider too, I have respect for arterial buses); if this is the case, bicycling in certain parts of LA county would be prohibitive for me. It's too bad transportation policy favors the private automobile with pedestrians, bicycles, street buses being 2nd class citizens.
Pedestrians and bikes maybe (though the law is on the cyclist's side), but how is a bus like a second class citizen? They run on the same roads as streets do and are subjected to the same traffic. By their nature they have to make stops to pick up passengers, which makes them slow, but what makes them second class citizens?
We have a dedicated bus route in the San Fernando Valley. There's a monster of a bus route to El Monte. The Harbor Transitway kind of sucked but they tried. The Rapid Bus network is a huge accomplishment.
If you really think about it, bus and rail has been booming in LA County in the last decade or so while highways have languished. Just look at traffic on the 5 in LA County and traffic on the 5 in Orange County. There is still traffic in Orange County but it's not as bad as LA.
You got your rail. You got your buses. There is more rail and more buses to come. When are we going to stop feeling like victims?
Last Edit: Jul 28, 2009 22:40:15 GMT -8 by spokker
I could not fathom riding a bicycle on the streets unless automobile traffic is congested and not likely to run me over. I also would not want to hold back cars, and especially buses (as an avid Metro rider too, I have respect for arterial buses); if this is the case, bicycling in certain parts of LA county would be prohibitive for me. It's too bad transportation policy favors the private automobile with pedestrians, bicycles, street buses being 2nd class citizens.
A part of that uneasiness has to do with how roads are designed. If more consideration was given to cyclists, such as sharrows and signage, more people would feel comfortable traveling by bicycle. I agree some streets are not appropriate for bicycles; Sunset west of West Hollywood, La Brea around Baldwin Hills, La Cieniega, parts of Wilshire to name a few.
The solution to our mobility problems lies in multiple transportation modes: cars, trains, buses and bicycles.
As I said in a recent post: Bicycles do not cause air pollution, are energy independent, do not contribute to traffic (well not in the same way a car does), and are healthy. I saw a bicyclists the other day who had a big square on his pack that said, "One Less car on the road."
L.A. is a great town for cycling. The weather is relatively mild and the terrain is relatively flat. I just wish DOT would recognize that.
I think the culture of cycling may put some people off too. A lot of it is rock n' roll-like stuff. I don't know how to explain it. But cycling tends to skew young and that may intimidate older people or younger people who aren't into that sort of thing.
I've been wanting to get a bike for a long, long, long, long time. That's how long it's been. I just don't feel comfortable with jumping in.