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City Hall (213) 473-7011 West LA (310) 575-8461 Westchester (310) 568-8772

July 15, 2008

Dear Friends,

I'd like to update you on my efforts to promote a new attitude and a new culture of road-sharing in Los Angeles among motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians.

Most of you are aware of the horrible incident that occurred July 4 between a motorist and two cyclists on Mandeville Canyon Road.   The incident was tragic, sending two experienced cyclists to the hospital with serious injuries.  It also escalated long-simmering tensions between cyclists and residents of Mandeville Canyon Road, and shone a bright spotlight on the problems cyclists face trying to navigate Southern California.


In the wake of the incident, I immediately called a Town Hall meeting to try to resolve the Mandeville Canyon issues.  I also introduced a council motion endorsing a Cyclists' Bill of Rights.


Over the weekend, many of the residents of Mandeville, and many of the cyclists who most frequently use the road, expressed concerns that the purpose and scope of the Town Hall had been lost.   They were worried that the tenor of debate had become too intense.  They also were concerned that the specific and unique issues of Mandeville Canyon were being obscured, with people suggesting they intended to discuss beach bike paths, bike racks on buses, and other issues.


In recognition of that, I decided to cancel the Town Hall, and instead created a Task Force to focus exclusively on the Mandeville Canyon issues.  The group includes representatives of: the three Mandeville homeowners associations; the four cycling clubs that train on Mandeville Canyon Road; the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition; and various city agencies, including my office.


The Task Force held a productive and promising first meeting last night.  Residents, cyclists and City staff are working together to develop a strategy to improve safety on Mandeville Canyon and to create mutual understanding among those who share the popular but narrow, winding canyon road.  We're looking at road improvements, signage, increased enforcement, and better education.  Kent Strumpel, my appointee to the City's Bicycle Advisory Committee, has a detailed account of the meeting here.  I'll post my staff's official minutes later, after task force members have reviewed them.


Meanwhile, many people in the Los Angeles cycling community have told me there is still a pressing need for a Town Hall to discuss the broader concerns of cyclists and of road-sharing.   I agree, and I have asked my staff to work with the cycling community and other interested parties to craft an agenda for such a Town Hall.  I intend to hold it shortly after Labor Day, in City Council Chambers or another central location, with the co-sponsorship of some of my council colleagues, and broadcast it on Channel 35.


With this Town Hall meeting, we have an opportunity to begin a genuine dialogue and a spirited public campaign about how motorists, cyclists and pedestrians can better share our roadways.  We all want to get somewhere, and we want to get there safely, quickly and peacefully.  With this Town Hall, I will welcome all voices and all proposals for how to do that better. 


If you have any questions or suggestions, or would like to be contacted about the Town Hall, please do not hesitate to contact me at


Councilman, 11th District

P.S. Tonight, KCRW's "Which Way LA?" will feature a lively discussion of the subject of the Cyclists' Bill of Rights, and of the specific Mandeville Canyon issue.  If you'd like to listen, it airs at 7 p.m. on 89.9 FM, and will be available later on the KCRW website

Velo Club La Grange

Velo Club La Grange is one of California's largest and oldest cycling clubs with over 400 members nationwide. The club was founded by Raymond Fouquet in 1969 and fields one of the top amateur racing teams in the United States. Past members include a Tour de France stage winner, an Olympic gold medalist, and numerous U.S. National and California state champions. La Grange is the recipient of the USA Cycling 2007 CLUB OF THE YEAR award.

La Grange promotes a doping-free competitive environment. Elite racers sign the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's 'Athlete’s Pledge for Clean Sport & Fair Competition'. La Grange has arranged to have a cardiac screening and assessment provided to Club members and elite racers for no out of pocket expenses.

Along with the Club's dedication to bicycle racing, the club welcomes new and inexperienced riders with a passion for cycling. La Grange is very active in the cycling and fitness communities. Our continuing public policy work with state and local government has led to major improvements in safety for all users of California roads. In addition, the Club has partnered with the Association of Blind Athletes and Meals on Wheels and sponsors an annual scholarship with the help of the Union Bank of California. La Grange enjoys the financial support of several corporations committed to promoting healthy and active living including Kahala Corporation.

501(c)(3) California Non-Profit Public Benefit Corporation 95-4000746
United States Cycling Federation Number 1232


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