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Weigh in on bicycle plans for L.A., Santa Monica

bike lead Bicycling in L.A. became big news when L.A. Mayor Villaraigosa got injured while riding on a bike — falling off his ride when a cabbie suddenly braked in front of him. Since then bike-related issues in L.A. have been constantly in the headlines. And many of those issues will come to a head this week, when the 2010 Los Angeles Bicycle Plan goes in front of the Planning Commission — which rejected a draft of the plan just a month ago.

Why was the previous draft rejected? Many bicycle activist groups were against the plan. At that time, LAist reported that “Much of the disagreement with the plan comes down to three points: a commitment to bike lanes, defining bicycle friendly streets, and updating the Technical Design Manual.” Upset cyclists urged the Planning Commission to reject the plan and send it back for a major redraft.

So the Planning Commission asked for a redraft — which is now generally liked by bike activists. Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition sent out an email to its members earlier today, asking them for “support to ensure that the plan is adopted and implemented in the City of LA.” According to LACBC:

The once weak bike plan now contains key hard fought wins for safer streets for cyclists, including:

* Prioritizing low-income/transit dependent neighborhoods in the 5 Year Implementation Plan
* Stronger language calling for more bikeways and amenities on planned and existing bike lanes and bike boulevards
* Increased inter-agency coordination between LADOT, Bureau of Street Services, Planning, etc., in order to maximize projects, like street repavings, for cyclists
* Requiring LADOT to do more community outreach on bikeway projects in advance

Local bike-friendly blog Streetsblog LA remarks that “Finally, everyone appears happy.” Are you happy? Weigh in on the plan at the Planning Commission meeting on Thu., Dec. 16 at 8:30 am at the SF Valley City Hall, Council Chamber, 2nd Fl., 14410 Sylvan St., Van Nuys.

Perhaps after two years of work, the L.A. Bicycle Plan will finally get adopted this month. Meanwhile, the City of Santa Monica’s starting work on its own bicycle plan. The Santa Monica Bicycle Action Plan Community Meeting happens tonight, Dec. 13, from from 6:30 pm to 8 pm at Santa Monica Civic Center Auditorium, 1855 Main St., Santa Monica.

Photo: Getty Images