Category Archives: leadership

KIDICAL MASS Bike Ride & Community Garden Tour: April 26th

Park Drive Community Garden
Garden Tours and FUN hands-on KIDS workshop!

First Kidical Mass Ride for 2014, Saturday, April 26th.
A fun bike ride experience for families with kids of all ages!
Education with Fun, Pizza, Prizes! Wear a costume and you could win a prize!

Kidical Mass flyer 4_2014
Click to enlarge

TIME:    9:00 AM – 12:30 PM
– North Parking lot off 14th Street.

Free: Please RSVP HERE

Join Santa Monica Spoke, the City of Santa Monica, SMC Bike Club and Santa Monica Community Gardeners for Santa Monica’s 2nd Kidical Mass Ride. 
We will take a ride around Santa Monica to visit a Community Garden for a special kid friendly event. Pizza Party, Raffle & Prizes at Memorial Park when we return!

9::00am – 10:00am
Check-in, Bike Safety Checks, Helmet Decorating
10:00am – 12:00pm 
Pitstop hosts Cynergy Cycles & Santa Monica Community Gardeners
Ride back to Memorial Park
12:00pm – 12:30pm
Return to Memorial Park by noon for Pizza Party, Raffle Drawing and Prizes

Don’t have a Kid Carrying Bike?
Special 20% discount on Rental at the Santa Monica Bike Center. You can find special Kid carrying cargo bikes, kid seats, trailers, tandems, tag-a-longs!! Anything you could need at a 20% discount  rentals) – Just mention Kidical Mass Ride! Reserve early and plan to pick up bikes Saturday morning in time to arrive at the event. 

Children must be accompanied and are the responsibility of their parents.
Bikes should be in good working condition. Free Safety Checks on site for minor adjustments/repairs.
Please use good judgement – ride is on city streets – smaller children should be in a child seat, in a trailer or Tag-a-long.

Watch last year’s Kidical Mass here:

Caltrans Adopts NACTO’s Street Design Guide!


In an announcement Thursday night at the NACTO Road Show in Oakland, Malcolm Dougherty announced that Caltrans will be the third state to endorse the NACTO guide! Reported on Twitter by the National Association of City Transportation Officials and on Facebook by Fremont Public Works Director Bryan Jones, the head of the country’s largest highway department said his agency will officially endorse NACTO Urban Streets Design Guide, a document that tracks the best practices for adding protected bike lanes and other human-oriented infrastructure to U.S. streets. More, they issued a memo to every “manual holder” (i.e., engineer who abides by the Highway Design Manual) reminding them of the importance of being flexible with design. California became the third state to endorse the NACTO Urban Streets Design Guide in this dramatic announcement in Oakland last Thursday.

Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty (right), CalBike Executive Director Dave Snyder. Photo: Robert Prinz, Bike East Bay.
Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty (right), CalBike Executive Director Dave Snyder. Photo: Robert Prinz, Bike East Bay.

“It’s a permission slip for cities, for engineers and planners, to do the good, well-vetted, proven work that we know we can do to make our street safer,” said Ed Reiskin, president of NACTO and director of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency. “It’s only a first step — ultimately, we’d like to see the changes in the Highway Design Manual to see it actually integrated into Caltrans documents. But this is a huge step forward, and great leadership from Malcolm, Secretary [Brian] Kelly, and Governor [Jerry] Brown,” who commissioned a report that recommended Caltrans adopt the NACTO guide.

Received with enthusiastic applause from the crowd of bike advocates, city officials, and planners, Dougherty is quoted saying: “We’re trying to change the mentality of the department of transportation, of our engineers, and of those that are doing work in and around the state highway system. Many cities around California are trying to be forward thinking in terms of alternative modes, such as bike and pedestrian, as well as the safety of the entire system, and the very least we can do as the department of transportation for the state is to follow that lead, to get out of the way, and to figure out how to carry that into regional travel.”

This move sets the stage for a decisive victory in the “better design” prong of the CalBike’s Better Bikeways campaign. The next step is to amend AB 1193, The Protected Bikeways Act, to include a provision explicitly freeing local agencies to rely on the best available guidance from around the world, not just Caltrans guidance. With this free and official endorsement of the NACTO guide, protected bikeways, bike boxes, and other innovative treatments expected to be included in the frequently updated NACTO guide will soon be in the toolbox of local planners and engineers across the state.

Caltrans Director Video Message 4/10/2014

CalBike’s members made this happen. Two key factors were the pressure of The Protected Bikeways Act and the persistent professional education of Caltrans officials and other stakeholders in the Governor’s administration. The “Better design” prong of the two-pronged Better Bikeways campaign is close to victory. After we win The Protected Bikeways Act, the work will shift to focusing on promoting the benefits of protected bikeways and other innovations to spread them across the state. Sign CalBike petition to show your support for protected bikeways today. “More funding” is the next prong. CalBike is looking forward to working with the more bike-friendly Caltrans in finding innovative ways to provide the funding for bike infrastructure that’s necessary to triple biking by 2020.

Join the conversation. Join CalBike’s social media blast supporting protected bikeways set to go out May 8th, many of the state’s bike to work day. In Los Angeles it is different – more on that later.

More here on StreetsblogLA Caltrans Endorses the NACTO Urban Street Design Guide

It remains to be seen how this endorsement will shape our cities and streets, but Caltrans certainly earns points for its effort to adopt reforms recommended by the State Smart Transportation Initiative. In the short time since the SSTI issued its report in February, Caltrans has already acted on several of its most urgent recommendations:

  1. Develop a new mission statement: Check.
  2. Modernize state transportation design guidance by endorsing the NACTO urban design guidelines: Check.
  3. Work to ensure success of S.B. 743, which calls for Automobile Level of Service to be replaced with transportation planning metrics that better accommodate the needs of all street users: Dougherty says meetings on this effort are currently in progress.
  4. Organize teams to develop action plans and performance measures: eight teams have been formed and are in the process of being staffed and readjusted.

For social media coverage of California’s statewide transportation issues, follow Melanie @currymel on Twitter or like the Streetsblog California Facebook page.


Another Santa Monica KIDICAL MASS RIDE, April 26th!

Kidcal Mass Santa Monica Returns April 26th 2014

We are pleased to announce the first Kidical Mass Ride for 2014, Saturday, April 26th
‐ a fun, bike ride experience for families with kids of all ages!
Education with Fun, Pizza, Prizes and a Ladybug! Wear a costume and you could win a prize!

TIME:    9:00 AM – 12:30 PM
START:  MEMORIAL PARK – North Parking lot off 14th Street. 

Free: Please RSVP HERE

ScheduleSM Community Gardens .9::00am – 10:00am
Check-in, Bike Safety Checks, Helmet Decorating
10:00am – 12:00pm
Ride and Visit Community Garden
12:00pm – 12:30pm
Pizza Party, Raffle Drawing and Prizes

Join Santa Monica Spoke, the City of Santa Monica, SMC Bike Club and Santa Monica Community Gardeners for Santa Monica’s 2nd Kidical Mass Ride. The theme for the ride?
– you may have guessed it, Community Gardens and Parks!!
We will take a ride around Santa Monica and visit a Community Garden on the way.
Pizza Party, Raffle & Prizes at Memorial Park when we return!

Children must be accompanied and are the responsibility of their parents.
Bikes should be in good working condition. Free Safety Checks on site for minor adjustments/repairs.
Please use good judgement – ride is on city streets – smaller children should be in a child seat, in a tailer or Tag-a-long. Kid carrying rentals available through local retailers, Bike Demos at the event.
For information on bike rentals email here

Watch last year’s Kidical Mass here:

Kidical Mass flyer 4_2014


Action Alerts: Protect Vulnerable Road Users



Action Alert: Protect California’s Vulnerable Road Users

Sign the California Bicycle Coalition’s petition to support California’s Vulnerable Road Users Protection Act, AB 2398. Too many Californians have been injured on our streets or are mourning the death of a loved one due to distracted or negligent motorists. Protecting Californians who ride bikes, walk, run, ride horses, scooter, skateboard, and work on our streets is vital to make California a better place to live. AB 2398 will protect all road users by:

  • Raising the fine for hitting a Vulnerable Road User
  • Assigning a point on the motorist’s driver’s license
  • Suspending the offender’s license for six months

This bill will remind motorists of their obligation to be cautious of each person on our streets. Sign CalBike’s petition todayjoin our Thunderclap to make a huge social media push, and encourage our representatives to support the Vulnerable Road Users Protection Act. Help make our streets more livable, and take California one step closer to reaching CalBike’s goal of tripling the number of people bicycling by 2020.

Action Alert: Let’s End California’s Hit & Run Epidemic

In the City of Los Angeles, 20,000 hit-and-run crashes occur annually, resulting in over 4,000 injuries. Of those injuries, 150 will be severe or fatal ones, and people walking and biking are disproportionately affected, accounting for 75% of those severe injuries and deaths.

While other crime rates in the City of L.A. have fallen over the past several decades, hit-and-runs have held steady or increased. If you are hit and severely injured or killed while walking or biking, there’s a greater than 1 in 5 chance that the driver will not stop. In February 2013,
a motorist hit Damian Kevitt while he was biking through Griffith Park in L.A., pinned him down, and then dragged him several hundred feet, leading to severe and near-fatal injuries. Hit-and-run victims are often more severely injured or killed during the act of fleeing than from the initial collision. Stopping after a collision saves lives.

So why do people run? Because they’re likely to get away with it.

Sign LACBC’s petition to help change that!


Feeder Ride to CicLAvia from Santa Monica, 4/6/2014

It’s Almost here, CicLAvia April 6 2014: Iconic Wilshire Blvd

Whether you ride with us or get there on your own – don’t miss it!
CicLAvia celebrates the streets of Los Angeles for everyone!  Temporarily limiting the access of motor vehicles and opening the streets to all users – walking, wheelchairs, skates, bikes, scooters, skate boards, strollers – you name it!

We will once again lead a feeder ride to CicLAvia this Sunday April 6th. We’ll meet at the top of the Santa Monica Pier at 8:00am and roll out at 8:30am sharp. Ride is aprox 9.7 miles and mostly flat on streets with bike lanes or low traffic volume at our time of travel. We will be traveling at an easy pace but do ask you to “stay with the pace” so we can all get there together.
For feeder ride all young children should be on tag-a-long or in trailers.
Join us Sunday and experience the fun of CicLAvia!

April 6th, 9am -4pm – Come experience
CicLAvia’s New Route, Iconic Wilshire Blvd

Open streets and the opportunity to explore one of the most legendary boulevards in Los Angeles car free by foot, bike, skates or other non-motorized transport marks the April 6
CicLAvia – Iconic Wilshire Boulevard, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.… the most walkable CicLAvia route ever!

Starting from the Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica Spoke
The route here, route 2 here

Stuff to bring:

  • helmet (for feeder ride)
  • sun screen
  • cash
  • spare tube/ patch kit
  • hydration
  • any special tools your bike requires!

For more info visit CicLAvia’s web site

CicLAvia 04_06_2014

Info on light rail & bus routes to or from CicLAvia

It’s Almost here, CicLAvia April 6 2014: Iconic Wilshire Blvd

Open streets and the opportunity to explore one of the most legendary boulevards in Los Angeles car free by foot, bike, skates or other non-motorized transport marks the April 6th, 2014 CicLAvia – Iconic Wilshire Boulevard, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.… the most walkable CicLAvia route ever!

SM Spoke, Santa Monica feeder ride information here. As usual we plan to start at the top of the Santa Monica Pier.

CicLAvia 04_06_2014

Click here to download a printable map    

CicLAvia – Iconic Wilshire Boulevard transforms one of the legendary thoroughfares of Los Angeles on April 6. CicLAvia is open to the public and free of charge. Registration is not required and there is no starting or ending point along the route.
From 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., CicLAvia – Iconic Wilshire Boulevard offers six miles of car-free, open streets and participants can join the fun at any point along the route.

Wilshire Boulevard was first carved out as a long path through a barley field in 1895. While its beginnings were humble, this path has transformed into one of the most notable boulevards in all of the United States. From 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on CicLAvia day, participants can stroll through a snapshot of the city’s architectural evolution from Victorian vision to modernist experimentation; massive towers of business to intimate houses of worship; world class museums to working class mercados.

The CicLAvia – Iconic Wilshire Boulevard route will connect One Wilshire in Downtown Los Angeles to Fairfax Avenue along Miracle Mile. These two anchor hubs will feature pedestrian zones with performers, activities sponsored by several fantastic museums, programming by some of our community partners, food trucks and more. Additional hubs along the route include MacArthur Park, Koreatown and Mid-Wilshire.

No matter how you plan your trip, take advantage of CicLAvia’s free downloadable stories on Wilshire Boulevard and “The Modernist’s Guide to Iconic Wilshire Boulevard”, which are sure to enrich your experience as you travel through a snapshot of the city’s architectural evolution.

For info and options on WalkLAvia click here

Info on light rail & bus routes to or from CicLAvia

Big Blue Bus Rapid 10 takes the frwy downtown LA to Santa Monica FAST! See detour info below
Metro 720 route DT Santa Monica south, Venice Blvd to downtown & Union Station
Light Rail: Connect to the Expo Line Culver City Station (timetable) then 
Big Blue Bus Rapid 20 to DT SM, Rapid 12 (to Westwood) or Route 12 (Westwood and Palms)
Bike Venice Blvd Bike lane west.  

Metro 733  Wilshire Blvd from downtown LA

Big Blue Bus -<br /><br /><br />
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Rapid 10: CicLAvia Detour 4/6

 We encourage riders to participate in the event and to follow BBB’s bicycle guidelines when bringing a bike on board the bus.
Rapid 10 buses will be on detour in Downtown LA and from the first to last trip of the day on Sunday, April 6.
Towards Santa Monica
Regular route to Flower St. at 6th St., then buses will detour and turn left 6th St., right on Grand Ave. and resume regular route. The following bus stops will be missed:
  • Wilshire Blvd. at Hope St.; instead use stop on Flower St. at 5th St.
  • Wilshire Blvd. at Grand Ave.; instead use stop on Grand Ave. at 9th St.
Towards Downtown Los Angeles
Regular route to Olive St. at 7th St., then buses will detour and continue on Olive St., turn left on 5th St., right on Figueroa St. and resume regular route. The following bus stops will be missed:
  • 7th St. at Olive St., Hope St., and Figueroa St.; instead use stops on Olive St. at 9th St. or Figueroa St. at 5th St.
  • Figueroa St. at 6th St.; instead use stop on Figueroa St. at 5th St.
For assistance planning your trip, call Customer Service at 310-451-5444.
Ride Blue. Go Green

Designing a Park by Bike, update from Airport2Park

Airport2Park News & Update: Airport2Park Design by bike

Nine USC graduate landscape architects under the direction of internationally renowned landscape architect Aroussiak Gabrielian (FORGROUND Design) took a practical approach in choosing bicycles for the their site visit to Santa Monica Airport where they started working on a three month project to design a park to replace the controversial facility. They jumped at the chance to ride their bikes to evaluate the site.  Since the site was designed many years ago expressly to exclude pedestrian access, the bicycle turned out to be the right tool to explore the airport site with a four mile ride around the perimeter fence – which someday could be a dedicated bikeway.

USC is a fairly bike friendly campus with a rapidly growing bicycle culture so nearly everyone had a bicycle and were quite completely comfortable on a group ride. The class demographic includes students from across the country and around the world. There was one student from China, who had NEVER been on a bicycle, yet even she didn’t even miss a beat. She took the extra initiative and learned to ride a bicycle just for this visit, though in the end, opted to rent a Tandem from Perry’s just to be sure that she would keep up.

Leading the ride was Michael Brodsky, a Loyola Marymount University Professor and Santa Monica Spoke member. Also in attendance was Mike Salazar, a Santa Monica Architect, member of the Santa Monica Conservancy and an expert in historic preservation. Both are founding members of  which is a group dedicated to creating a grand park to replace the Santa Monica Airport.

Aroussiak Gabrielian is using this opportunity for her USC group of graduate landscape architects to put practice into real life. She has designed a rigorous timeline of environmental, social analysis and needs assessment that will inform the development of the project. Each student has an assigned specialty including the natural environment, history, topography, site mitigation, and community connectivity. All data collected informs the final design proposals which should be completed by May 2014.

During the 3 hour bike ride there were many stops to talk about the role of parks in the social fabric of the community. Discussions ranged from the westside’s regional need for natural habitats, water reclamation, and carbon rejuvenation, to the more local needs for bike paths, sports and playing fields due to the severe lack of parks in Santa Monica.  They also had the opportunity to explore linkages between the south side of the airport site where the Santa Monica College classrooms (and public art galleries) are located, with the north side Ocean Park community by what could be a newly created bicycle and pedestrian access.

While the ride was constantly interrupted but he roar of jet planes and the smell of jet fuel, the participants on their bikes were also able to see the spectacular views of Century City with the Hollywood sign to the east and to the setting sun on the Pacific Ocean in the west. These views are currently reserved for only those privileged to be flying in private planes or jets, yet these coveted vistas could one day invite thousands of hikers and bikers to enjoy what could be a most extraordinary park in Santa Monica.

IMPORTANT UPDATE FROM Airport2Park: The Santa Monica City Council will be meeting on Tuesday, March 25th to consider what to do with Santa Monica Airport after the FAA contract ends in July 2015. For more information on how you can support in this project visit Airport2Park for updates for the latest updates and how you can get involved. If you would like to see this turned into a grand park complete with 150 acres of walking and biking, you may write the city council before the March 25th meeting at

2014-03-13 Rios charette1 design summary

Join me in Sacramento? Transportation Choices Summit 2014


2014 is a year of tremendous opportunity for California’s communities.  Imagine our communities with world-class, affordable public transit, walkable, bikeable streets, and homes affordable and accessible to all.  That’s what’s possible. With millions of new cap-and-trade revenue, California is now deciding how to best spend that money. You and I have the opportunity to tell legislators how this money can and should make a difference in our daily lives.

This will be my third year participating in the important summit and lobby day at our state capital. I invite you to join me in Sacramento at the Transportation Choices Summit on Tuesday, April 22 and at the optional Advocacy Day on Wednesday, April 23rd. We’ll learn about the latest legislative developments and strategize with community advocates from around the state.  Together, we can build a movement to transform transportation and improve the lives of all Californians. There are low-cost and no-cost options to attend. Click here to learn more and register at:

Imagining Measure R -2


It’s a daunting challenge organizing stakeholders in big, populous, diverse and disaggregated LA County to address LA’s intractable traffic problems, clean the air, and make the city more friendly to transit riders, pedestrians and bicyclists. But Move LA’s transportation coalition continues to grow. Last year more than 600 people attended our 5th annual Transportation Conversation, including state, regional and local elected officials, community developers and community-based organizations, agency leaders and their staffs, engineering and construction interests, faith-based organizations, LA Metro Board members, public health advocates and other civic interests. At Move LA we are trying to serve as a transit Johnny Appleseed — seeding good ideas about transit around LA County, providing a feedback loop and building momentum. This annual conversation has become a key event at which consensus is crafted. Come and see the coalition in action, working toward consensus on Measure R-2! March 28 at the Center at Cathedral Plaza in downtown LA. Register now and get the early bird rate.

Move LA 6th Annual Transportation Conversation Student Scholarship Application
Scholarship Application Deadline: 5:00pm on Friday March 14th


ACTION ALERT: Support Bike Lanes on Santa Monica Blvd in Beverly Hills: Tuesday, March 4th

ACTION ALERT: Support Bike Lanes on Santa Monica Blvd in Beverly Hills, Tuesday March 4th, 2013

With bike lanes in West Hollywood and Los Angeles on Santa Monica Blvd, the missing gap along this important east/west corridor is Beverly Hills. A Blue Ribbon Committee has officially recommended to council that they widen Santa Monica and stripe in bike lanes, but the council may still need convincing as detractors have been attending meetings in the past. Can you attend the council meeting and speak in favor of bike lanes on Santa Monica Blvd.?

Courtesy of Mark Elliot of Better Bike Beverly Hills, here are the full details:

On March 4th City Council will review the Santa Monica Boulevard Blue Ribbon Committee recommendations. The Council will provide direction on project design. The two issues to be discussed are whether to:

(1) Widen the existing curb-to-curb width to improve conditions for motor vehicles and bicycles. This requires widening beyond the existing northern curb face. If City Council approves the widening, the Blue Ribbon Committee recommends striping the pavement for bicycle lanes.

(2) Add landscaped medians to the Boulevard.

Take Action!


Beverly Hills City Council
When: Tuesday, March 4; 7:00 p.m.
Where: 455 N. Rexford Dr., Beverly Hills, California 90210
Facebook Event: Facebook event and spread the news.
Feeder Ride: Mark Elliot will meet with whomever wants to ride together to City Hall before, at 5:45 at Peets, 258 S. Beverly. Depart at 6:45.

2. EMAIL: Correspondence can be addressed to Council in advance of the meeting: - bcc:

3. CALL: Council can be reached by phone: 310-285-1013