Archive for the ‘helmet’ Category
This morning, the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission (SCCRTC) allocated $5.3 million for the the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail (MBSST). The funds are designated for the Westside Santa Cruz segment between Natural Bridges and the Wharf ($4.06M), $1.04 million for the Lee Road segment in Watsonville, and $200K for the Twin Lakes Beachfront project.
With funding designation, local agencies can finalize designs and permitting so that construction can begin.
The MBSST is a planned 50 mile coastal rail trail from the San Mateo / Santa Cruz County line to Pacific Grove in Monterey County. The SCCRTC provides the high level planning view for the project, while local agencies are responsible for design and construction on their segments.
The Westside Santa Cruz segment will construct a new paved trail from Natural Bridges Drive to the wharf alongside the existing railroad right of way. The city of Santa Cruz estimates this segment will cost $5.3M by itself, so the city will need to budget $1.3M of city funding to complete this segement.
The Commission allocated $200K to provide bike and pedestrian improvements between 5th Ave and 7th Ave as part of the existing Twin Lakes Beachfront project near the Santa Cruz Harbor.
The city of Watsonville receives $4.06M to pave a 4,000 foot trail alongside the railroad right-of-way from Lee Road east to the city of Watsonville Slough Trails, with connections to Lee Road and Ohlone Parkway. The railroad tracks run parallel to Beach Street in Watsonville between San Andreas Blvd and Walker Street / Harkin Slough Rd.
The $5.3 million for rail trail funding is a part of a larger $14 million the Commission allocated for transportation projects throughout Santa Cruz County. This includes $2.7M for pavement work throughout unincorporated parts of Santa Cruz County, $1.2M for sidewalks on Airport Blvd in Watsonville, $346K for intersection improvements at Mt Hermon Road and Scotts Valley Drive, $345 for new Paratransit vans and buses, and $479K for intersection improvements at Highway 1 and River Street. SCCRTS also set aside $2M for future construction of auxiliary lanes on Highway 1 between 41st Ave and Soquel Drive.
I usually pay attention to what’s happening in Menlo Park, CA, but this bit of news caught me by surprise:
Menlo Park is eyeing an ordinance that aims to curb harassment of those considered vulnerable users of the road. If signed into law, the legislation would create recourse for victims of road rage, and other forms of motorist harassment, who sometimes have difficulty in criminal cases. The proposed ordinance seeks to protect all “vulnerable” people on the road — including children, elderly people and those with disabilities, as well as cyclists, according to Gregory Klingsporn, chairman of the Menlo Park Bicycle Commission.
Details are still in the works, but this would likely be similar to existing local legislation that seeks to protect vulnerable users in Los Angeles, Sunnyvale, Berkeley and in Sonoma County. Anti-harassment laws in those areas allow cyclists and walkers to file civil suit against motorists who harass them.
Menlo Park is a small, affluent city located in San Mateo County just north and west of Palo Alto, CA. The city is famous as a center of venture capital that seed technology and medical ventures. Notable businesses and employers include Facebook, SRI, the U.S. Geological Survey, SLAC (nee Stanford Linear Accelerator), Robert Half International, Geron and Sunset Magazine.
Menlo Park roads are thick with cyclists during commute hours, with nearly 400 cyclists passing through Menlo Park’s Caltrain Station each day and hundreds more transiting to Menlo Park businesses from other cities. The popular SF2G group rides — a weekday bike train from San Francisco to Silicon Valley — also pass through Menlo Park. Roads used as flagpoles out to I-280 are also popular with recreational cyclists, with large groups riding on Sand Hill Road to access routes in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
The city of Menlo Park hired a new transportation manager last May, and it turns out Jesse Quirion is a bona fide bike nut. He’s been careful with policy suggestions as he learns the ropes and people involved, but we’ve already noticed changes there. Last month, Quirion encouraged the Menlo Park police department to change their language when reporting traffic collisions, and the Menlo Park Transportation Commission voted unanimously to replace street parking with bike lanes on Laurel Lane next to a private school. This Laurel Street bike lane project, incidentally, comes up to the full city council vote at their Tuesday, December 10 meeting, 7 PM at the city council chambers at City Hall.
This looks to be in the proposal stage right now with the BPAC, so stay tuned. I used to work in Menlo Park and I have to admit, I don’t recall anything that could be construed as harassment in over five years of daily bike commuting across that town. I do hear of road rage incidents with the recreational road rides up on Sand Hill.
Full news in the SF Examiner: http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/menlo-park-considers-law-targeting-harassment-of-cyclists/Content?oid=2640958.
I’ve been a year round utility cyclist since the 1980s. Whilst living in Illinois and Colorado, that meant cycling to work in occasionally extreme weather. You just deal with it.
Six years in California, however, has softened me.
Those of you who live in truly cold weather will laugh at those who wear long underwear and face masks for the mildly cool temperatures we occasionally experience in the San Francisco Bay Area. Go ahead, mock us. And then allow me to relate my story.
I began Cyclelicious when I lived in Longmont, Colorado. If conditions were cold and dry, my usual bike-to-work garb was Bridgedale wool hiking socks (which, incidentally, I still highly recommend as a gift), a couple of thin layers on my legs, a couple of thin layers over my torso covered by a wind-blocking cycling jacket, mid-weight full gloves, and a fleece hat. That was good down to about 10°F (-12°C). Below that, I add another layer to my torso, use heavier gloves and cover my face with a balaclava. With snow or rain, I’d cover that with plastic rain gear. I was always cozy during my six mile commute.
I was caught out late last night and accidentally caught the wrong bus home. Instead of dropping me off within a mile of my home, this bus dumped me off at a park-and-ride five miles away. It’s 30°F (-1°C) out, but no problem — I’m wearing my Colorado winter cycling gear! Besides that, I have 400 feet of elevation gain built into this ride, guaranteeing heat generation as I push out the watts to go uphill.
When I arrived at home, my toes and hands were numb and I was shivering with mild hypothermia. I felt so pathetic.
But that leads me to wonder: Are there physiological adaptations to cold weather? In other words, how does our body change in response to constant exposure to the cold? I know about the immediate responses such as vasoconstriction and so forth, but how does body adapt for long term cold exposure?
Emma with her gorgeous yellow Schwinn is a crafty one. She mounted a steel mailbox to the rear rack of her bike.
She drilled holes in the bottom of the mailbox and ran zip ties through them to secure it to the rack. If you need directions to try this yourself, you can find them at Martha Stewart’s website.
I didn’t get a good photo of it, but Emma also has a small lock to secure the mailbox door. You can kind of see it in this photo.
In case you’re wondering, that vest was also made by Emma.
Lady Fleur also shot photos of Emma, her outfit and her bike. I’m sure you can find them at her website tomorrow or the next day. Lady Fleur will also probably post some to Silicon Valley Bike Style soon.
A 17 year old boy was killed last night while crossing a large intersection in south San Jose with his bicycle. The driver of the silver Toyota RAV-4 stayed on the scene, according to media reports.
this Toyota is at the scene, person inside declined to talk. pic.twitter.com/kfLw6h8nFJ
— Eric Kurhi (@erickurhi) December 4, 2013
This collision occurred at Branham Lane and Vistapark Drive, which features low radius turn pockets that enables drivers to make right turns at high speed at the expense of pedestrian and cyclist safety.
Investigation is ongoing, but photos from Mercury News journalist Eric Kurhi seem to show the cyclist was hit hard from behind. The Toyota’s passenger right side fender was crushed and the windshield smashed. The bike’s rear wheel is mangled.
At Branham and Vistapark in San Jose, where a bicyclist was seriously injured in an accident this evening. pic.twitter.com/6DHZWDjcq1
— Eric Kurhi (@erickurhi) December 4, 2013
2013 has been a particularly deadly year for cyclists and pedestrians in the Bay Area’s largest city, with this teen’s passing hitting the quarter century mark.
Story in the Mercury-News: San Jose: Boy, 17, identified as bicyclist killed in collision with SUV.
Bay Area Bike Share (BABS) released their three month report card. Since the system opened to the public on August 29, 2013, 3,200 annual members and another 10,000 casual users have racked up 178,000 miles on 80,000 trips.
The system averages 878 rides per day. With 650 bikes now available for use system wide, that works out to about 1.4 rides per bike per day.
By comparison, Chicago’s Divvy system, which began two months before BABS, averaged 2.3 rides per day per bike after 90 days of operation. New York Citibike currently averages 5.8 trips per bike per day. The Bay Area Air Quality District, which funds BABS, says they’re happy with the numbers and believes the system’s expansion to 1,000 bikes and 100 stations in 2014 will help to boost ridership.
BABS also announced the availability of corporate partners to make bike share membership available to employees at a discounted fee. Various partnership levels are available, beginning with a “Level 1″ that involves a $100 setup fee that entitles employees to a discounted $75 annual membership fee. For those who can commit to at least 50 employees signing up for the system, but member discounted fee is only $65 per employee. For more information, visit the BABS corporate partnership page.
Bay Area Bike Share operates in San Francisco, Redwood City, Palo Alto, Mountain View and San Jose and remains open throughout the winter. And, hey, Don’t you think Bay Area Bike Share membership might make a nifty Christmas present for a close friend or loved one?
I tell you what: I have a free BABS day pass to give away in San Jose if you meet me at the San Fernando green bikeway ribbon cutting happening at 8 AM.
1200 people ride bicycles on San Fernando Street each day.
The city of San Jose will have a ribbon cutting on 8 A.M. Wednesday morning at Diridon Station for the newly paved and painted San Fernando Street bikeway. I’ll be there with my cameras and bike. If I can find something green to wear I’ll put it on.
the public is invited to dress in green and join representatives from the City of San José and the Silicon Valley Leadership Group for the official launch of the city’s second green bikeway. The event will take place at San José Diridon Station near the intersection of San Fernando and Cahill Streets. Immediately after the brief ribbon cutting, a 1.2 mile “Show Us Your Green” community bike ride will get underway on the San Fernando green bikeway. The ride will end at San José City Hall, 200 East Santa Clara St., at approximately 8.45 a.m.
“I am pleased that we have been able to stretch our limited transportation funds to provide the community safer and more livable streets,” said Hans Larsen, San José’s Director of Transportation. “San Fernando’s basic bike lanes have seen a 112% increase [in bike traffic] over the last seven years, with 1189 bicyclists a day counted last year at the San Fernando & Fourth Street intersection. This project provides an enhanced biking experience while also improving the pedestrian environment.”
San José’s first two green bike lane projects – Hedding Street and now San Fernando Street – both serve as primary bikeways, providing east-west access across the city and connections to the Guadalupe River Trail. On-street primary bikeways, like this one, provide cross-town connections to off-street trails using enhancements such as green color, painted buffers between cars and bikes, and physical barriers separating cars and bikes.
“The enhanced bike lanes along San Fernando connect regional commuting options with employment centers, including downtown San José, North San José via the Guadalupe River Trail, and those up the Peninsula via transit at Diridon Station,” said Jessica Zenk, Senior Director for Transportation with the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.
San Fernando Street’s new enhanced, green bikeway is a key link in the 500-mile citywide bicycle network that San José is building. Within this larger network is a 140-mile system of primary bikeways that function as the bicycle equivalent of the City’s arterial roadway system.
“We’re thrilled to see San Fernando Street get the highly visible, comfortable bike infrastructure it needs,” said Corinne Winter, Executive Director of the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition. “This San Fernando bikeway provides direct connections to the fabulous buffered bike lanes on 3rd, 4th, 10th and 11th Streets as well as the Guadalupe River Trail.”
This bike project is part of a larger San Fernando Streetscape Enhancement project funded by a $1.4 million Transportation for Livable Communities grant. The project includes pavement resurfacing and enhancements to street lights, street trees, crosswalks, sidewalks and curb ramps.
Lady Fleur and I scoped out the freshly painted green paint on San Fernando the other week.
Let me know if you’ll be there.
Our unusually warm daytime temperatures in the San Francisco Bay Area will come to an end tonight with the arrival of a viral blob of blue Canadian slime.
You’ll feel the temperature drop a good 10 degrees Fahrenheit (or a slightly less impressive 6 degrees Celsius) and wind gusts to 40 MPH as the cold front passes by, especially near the coasts and in the mountains. Winds will be from the west to northwest as the front approaches if you’d like to try to time things for a new Strava KOM.
The National Weather Service has issued a Freeze Watch for Wednesday night, with our coldest temperatures expected on Thursday morning where some areas can expect temperatures down to the low 20s F (single digits below zero Celsius). If you haven’t done so already, now’s a good time to dig out your hats and full finger gloves. Some kind of wind blocking jacket, pants and shoes or socks are a good idea, too, especially if you have a longer ride.
A cool trick I learned when I lived and biked in icebiking country: ice cream sandwiches do not melt in sub-freezing weather, and it really freaks people out when you show up at the office enjoying a frozen confectionary as you haul your bike in from the cold.
This is not a song about Alice’s Restaurant. Among the two dozen or so traffic fatalities reported during this past Thanksgiving holiday weekend: “Fast and Furious” star Paul Walker, who was a passenger in a Porsche Carrera GT. Roger Rodas was driving an estimated 70 to 90 MPH through a curve signed for 15 MPH at a Santa Clarita industrial park when he lost control and wrapped the car around a tree. Investigators speculate speed may have been a factor in the fatality, which killed both the driver and passenger.
More carnage below the photo of the remains of Rodas’s Porsche.
Driver of a Toyota Corolla rolls through a stop sign and kills his passenger in Tulare County.
Shortly after midnight after Thanksgiving Day, a man crashed his car into the center divide of I-80 near Solano Avenue in Richmond, CA, got out of his car and was subsequently hit by multiple vehicles. CHP closed westbound I-80 for two hours to investigate and clean up the remains.
Several hours later, a Recology trash collection truck hit and killed a woman walking across the 7th Street offramp for I-80 in San Francisco.
Brake lights ahead! That can’t possibly mean a possible hazard, right? A man walking in the westbound lanes of the Dumbarton Bridge was picked up by bridge workers in a work truck. The man, who dispatchers report was “possibly inebriated,” then jumped out of the truck and ran across several lanes of bridge traffic, attempting to wave down cars. Several cars stopped to avoid hitting this man, but he was eventually struck down by other drivers who failed to recognize the potential hazard in front of them. Westbound Dumbarton was closed for about two and a half hours.
“Party in car bloody and not moving” notes this terse CHP dispatch of a black Lexus versus a pole that resulted in a fatality in Solano County near Dixon, CA. And another Dixon fatality when the driver of a Saturn hit a tree.
Prank bomb threat closes a San Diego interstate highway for two hours on Thanksgiving Day.
Driver perishes after sending car into water filled ditch in Yolo County, California.
The Willow Glen Neighborhood Association posted photos of the aftermath of this mid-morning property damage hit and run in San Jose last week. The driver of the silver car went up and over the parked vehicle on a residential street with a 25 MPH speed limit then ran away on foot.
I post these carnage stories to counter frequent claims that cyclists cause danger, mayhem, destruction and evil on California roads. The proper focus on safety should be on the devices that are the cause of loss of life and injuries.