Sunday, August 30, 2015

Game Over

I thought I had seen it all when it came to #unblockbikelanes. Cars, trucks and the PPA unwilling to ticket them no matter how blatant or how long a vehicle had been sitting there. In some cases weeks could go by and a vehicle could go without a single ticket. But this picture took the prize.


What's wrong with this picture, I here you ask? It appears that some city agency has placed a directional sign for oncoming cars in a contra-flow bike lane. Forcing cyclists to ride illegally on the sidewalk or ride into on coming traffic.

At this point we should just call #unblockbikelanes what it is, a charade.To this I can only have one response.



Its time to stop playing a game that we have no chance of winning because the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia made deal with Philadelphia Parking Authority that was unenforceable. Its time to stop posting pictures under the #unblockbikelanes until the PPA management is prepared to enforce the parking laws as they are. As opposed to the selective enforcement they prefer.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Protect and Serve?

In May 2015 Philadelphia cyclist Ron Deets was punched and dragged from the street. While the incident was captured on video by an eyewitness. The Philadelphia Police officers who responded refused to take any action. Claiming that because they had not witnessed it no crime had been committed. It was not until local media picked up the story did the police agree to investigate.

Now, once again, the Philadelphia Police department has failed again.

On Tuesday, August 26 at 4pm local Philly cyclist Katie Mundie was riding South on 11th St near the 200 block with her two sons, ages 5 & 7, in her cargo bike. When she had an encounter of the worst kind and she got it all on video with her GoPro camera.

Warning this video contains graphic language.

When Ms. Mundi went to the 3rd District police station to file a complaint according to her their response was; “At first they said they could not do anything but I explained because of the C-word it was gender based harassment. Then they took my statement and said they would run the plates. But they did not expect anything to happen. They said if I have another run in with the same driver then there would be something they could do.”

While I am not a lawyer and I do not play one on TV. After watching the video I believe the driver was clearly harassing, threatening, and intimidating Ms Mundie and her two young children. So much so that her 7 year old son had a nightmare that night, “thinking that the guy was going to come after him.”

I also believe that the unwillingness of the police officers at the 3rd district to follow through on a valid complaint was reprehensible. Especially in light of the fact that this was not a case of she said, he said. Nor did Ms. Mundie do anything to provoke this. The video speaks for itself.

So what can be done? I am asking everyone to tweet this post along with a personal comment to the following people below. So the police enforce the laws we are expected to follow and protect other parents and their children from this egregious behavior.

3rd District Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell

Captain Frank Milillo (3rd District)

Mayor Michael Nutter

Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities

ABC Local News

Fox Network Local News

CBS local news

NBC local news





Saturday, August 1, 2015

Bike In Movie - Premium Rush



Looking for something to do on Wednesday, August 5 at 8pm. Then head over Whole Foods on 929 South St. to watch a Bike In Movie courtesy of Cadence Youth Cycling. Where they will be showing the movie “Premium Rush”. On the rooftop of the parking garage. (http://on.fb.me/1ICDapj)

Premium Rush stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Wilee. A disenchanted Columbia Law School graduate who has put off taking the bar exam because he could not bear to enter the humdrum life of the legal profession. He finds meaning and purpose in being employed as a thrill-seeking New York City bicycle messenger despite arguments with his girlfriend and fellow bike messenger, Vanessa (Dania Ramirez), who insists that he should make something of himself. He is pursued around New York City by a corrupt police officer who wants an envelope Wilee has.
Premium Rush is built out of familiar parts, but no matter how formulaic Premium Rush's storyline might seem, it's elevated by high-octane action and enjoyable performances.

This event is free and donations will be used to support Cadence Youth Cycling

Friday, July 17, 2015

McBike


While I may not be the biggest fan of McDonalds and the quality of their food. I will give  therm credit for recognizing a marketing opportunity when they see it. In certain select cities that have a number of cyclists ring for transportation they have created packaging that is cycling specific for drive thru orders.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Oh, NO!!

There is a new ordinance that has been introduced to the Philadelphia City Council sponsored by City Councilman at Large David Oh. On the surface this bill is nothing more than an ineffective gesture to deal with cars and trucks parking in bike lanes.

By raising the fines from $50 in Philadelphia and $75 in Center City to $200 in Philadelphia and $300 in Center City. The problem is that the bill has no language in it to address the abysmal lack of enforcement on the part of the Philadelphia Parking Authority. The reason for this is that the PPA is run by the state government, so it is not accountable to city government.

It is the first part of the bill that has far darker and much more serious implications.

(2) Persons riding bicycles on roads without designated bicycle lanes shall share the road and not impede the normal and reasonable movement of vehicle traffic.
* * *
When the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia contacted Councilman Oh for a definition of “impeding” his response was:

“Not impede is in the ordinance already. I’ve simply taken that language and I take it to mean if a road has a specific speed limit — such as 35 or 40 miles an hour, or 25 — those are meant for vehicles that can go that rate of speed. Typically: cars, motorcycles maybe. So, a bicycle that cannot go that speed should share the road and move over so cars can continue to go in that direction.”

This is a very vague and dangerous definition, police could easily pull over cyclists on the grounds of impeding traffic. Then use it as an opportunity to stop, search, and question anyone they consider suspicious. Without probable cause.

And if you think it can’t happen here then take a look at when the Tampa, FL Police started writing tickets to hundreds of people using archaic laws relating to bicycles.


Councilman Oh’s bill is a return to 2009 when the Philadelphia City Council attempted to pass punitive legislation against cyclists. Like $1000 fines for running stop signs and confiscating “brakeless”, fixed gear bikes. With Indego having reached 100,00 rides in two months since its launch and the growing number of cyclists in and around Philadelphia. this potential bill is not just a big step backwards. It creates the potential for future legal problems for the City of Philadelphia. 

The Bicycle Coalition has stated that, "we do not support this bill as written”. At the Philadelphia Bicycle Journal I do not support this bill at all, no matter how many times it is rewritten.