The Monday Roundup: Racial justice, gift of biking, drugs, cafe on wheels, and more

The Monday Roundup: Racial justice, gift of biking, drugs, cafe on wheels, and more


Before we get started on this week’s best links from around the web, we want to give a special thanks to the Handmade Bike & Beer Festival for their advertising support and sponsorship of the Monday Roundup. The fest, now in its 9th year, happens this Friday and Saturday (10/7-8) in north Portland. Join me at the Base Camp Brewing tent to sample the fresh hop ale made with hops we picked up by bike!

Now, on with the best stories we came across this past week…

Terminator privilege: When it comes to selective enforcement, there’s white privilege and then there’s celebrity privilege. When movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger got stopped for cycling in a train station he got away scot-free by promising to take a selfie with the cop.

Commuting gift: Police in southern California met a teen who walked five hours to work — so they bought him a bike.

Bodies on bikes: Streetsblog L.A. writer Sahra Sulaiman has this week’s must-read on equity. It’s about the imperative need for mobility advocates to shift away from a bike-centric perspective and replace it with one that puts human existence and experience — what she calls the bodies on the bikes — at the top. Oh, and don’t dismiss racial justice when discussing transportation policy.

Cafe on wheels: We get a lot of pitches for bike-related crowdfunding campaigns. This one stood out for its impressive ambition about what a bike-based business can be: a turnkey cafe!

Zero vision, zero access: A proposal from the mayor of London would rate large trucks for safety (based on how well the driver can see other road users) and ban the most dangerous ones from entering the city center.

Driving is for old people: Like it or not we’re entering a new era of driving. Here’s an interesting perspective from young kids who might grow up to never know a world where humans got behind the wheel.

Counting what counts: Our friends at City Observatory put Placemeter, a new road user counting technology, to the test. Their verdict: It looks very promising.

Transit in LA: This seems like good news. A light rail line that goes between downtown Los Angeles and Santa Monica has been such a smash hit (reaching 70% of its ridership level) that new cars are being added to deal with overcrowding.

Expanded distraction enforcement: 10 years after California passed its first law to battle cell phone use while driving they have now widened the reach of the law.

When infrastructure expansion is good: In New York City a new policy proposal would allow the DOT to expand sidewalks in order to handle the human congestion.

When infrastructure expansion is bad: Then there’s the Oregon DOT, which celebrates the overdue completion of a project that cost $365 million just to straighten 10 miles of a little-used rural highway.

Paris FTW: Paris is the New York City of Europe. They’re not afraid to enact real car control measures. When Paris closed two miles of waterfront highway along the Seine River, it turns out people just figured out other — non-driving — ways to get around. Imagine that!

Progress in NYC: New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio signed several new laws into the books that make his city a nicer place to walk and bike.

Drugged up racers: We’re not sure what was more disturbing; this Deadspin headline about pervasiveness of drug use in the pro cycling ranks, or the tweet about it by former pro Ryan Trebon.

Inspiration from Groningen: Don’t believe the hype that cars are a necessity in dense urban environments. If you need a pick-me-up after battling haters, check out this profile of Groningen and have your faith in bicycling restored.

Change culture, change streets: Here’s a good overview on why car-centric countries like the US and the UK got that way, why it’s so harmful, and how we can start working toward a different reality.

Thanks to readers Paul, Todd, Mark, Steve, Ron and Ted for the suggestions this week.

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 –

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