The Bike wars come to LA.. The last two Mayors of LA have been cyclists.. Will the next one be.?
.Time for cycling advocates to take up arms.?
Drivers on one San Fernando Valley street are fuming at the congestion that followed reductions of their lanes and addition of paths for cyclists.
I couldn't help but wonder, as I sat idling through one traffic light, then two, then three, whether the mayor's broken elbow had anything to do with the ruination of my favorite street.
For years, Wilbur Avenue had been a free-flowing community secret, a commuter street that bypassed the congestion of Northridge's main routes. Then a "street improvement" project last month turned our speedway into a parking lot.
The street was repaved, restriped and reassigned.
A "road diet," the city planners call it, aimed at slowing autos down and creating bicycle paths. Four traffic lanes were whittled to three — one in each direction and a center turning lane. Curbside bike lanes now hem in the cars.
Cycling advocates have been pushing for years for more bike lanes on city streets. Their campaign got a boost last summer after Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa suffered a broken elbow when a cab abruptly pulled in front of him and he fell off the bike he was pedaling along Venice Boulevard.
A month later, the mayor convened a bike summit, ordered up hundreds of bike safety posters and promised to beef up construction of designated paths for his two-wheeled comrades. Within weeks street crews were hard at work — some on overtime and furlough days — painting bike logos along two miles of Wilbur Avenue.