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News, Events, Updates


City Of Boston Bikes Program Update

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 26

Lots of good stuff in here:

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Boston Bike Week Festival & Bike Fridays

Boston Bike Week FestivalFrom April-August, on one Friday a month we’ll host a party on City Hall Plaza for cyclists. In May we’ll hold a special Boston Bike Week Festival to celebrate the end of Bay State Bike Week. You can join a convoy or bike over on your own.

Boston Bike Week Festival: May 15th
Bike Fridays: April 24th (new this year!),June 26th, July 24th, August 28th

Register now for the 2015 Boston Bike Week Festival and Bike Fridays.

Volunteer to lead a convoy: http://bit.ly/bikefriday2015volunteers

2015 Boston Bike Friendly Business Application

Bike Friendly BusinessAll Boston-based businesses are encouraged to apply to be named as a Boston Bike Friendly Business.

Last year we recognized almost 50 businesses for the work they’ve done to help make Boston more bike friendly.

Not sure if your business is bike-friendly enough? Click here to read about all the ways to earn points towards your application, and take a pre-assessment.

We’re getting ready to hire Youth Cycling Instructors!

We are preparing to hire Youth Cycling Instructors to join our team. Youth Cycling Instructors teach in-classroom and on-bike workshops to students in grades 2-12 during the school day in the Boston Public Schools. For more information, visithttp://www.bostonbikes.org/about/getinvolved/work-with-us/

2014 Roll it Forward Survey

Last year we conducted a survey of Roll it Forward recipients to learn more about the program’s impact and where there is room for improvement. You can download the full analysis here.

Key Findings:

  • The vast majority of Roll it Forward recipients live in low-income households.
  • Roll it Forward increases access to bikes. Nearly 96% did not have access to a working bike.
  • 92% of adult respondents who rode less than 4 times a week before receiving their bike rode more after they received a bike.
  • Fun and fitness are the greatest motivators for riding

Notable Quotes:

“Keeps my body fit and pockets thick!”

“It had a very good impact in my life, it got me to work on time everyday without any pollution to our world and had fun while doing it.”

“[the bike] just made it less stressful to get to destinations – much more simple”

ICYMI: New Community Space for Biking

Image credit: Beta BostonFortified, a local bike light company, has received a $150,000 grant through the Mission Main Streets Grants program, which they plan to use to create “a community space for Boston biking.”

You can read the full artcile from Beta Boston here.

 

ICYMI: Bike Part Vending Machine & Repair Station

Image credit: BikestockBikestock has partnered with Whole Foods to place a bike part vending machine at their South End location. Along with items that can be found in regular vending machines, this machine offers bike-specific items such as: inner tubes, patch kits, lights, locks, and multi-tools. A bike pump and bike repair stand have also been made available for use 24-hours a day, 7 days a week.


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London Approves City Wide Bike Super Highway

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 26

This is exactly what Boston needs. From the web

london-separated-bicycle-pathway

Catering to some of the 170,000 cyclists that ride across London every day, this segregated bicycle lane will stretch from west to east, pass through the heart of the city and span 18 miles when completed, the longest of its kind on the continent. Backed by mayor Boris Johnson, a second route will also eventually span perpendicular to this first one, reaching south to north and crossing the first path in the middle of the city.

More here.

The thing is, these sort of projects cost money, but they cost DRAMATICALLY less money than say a subway, or highway. These are the sorts of infrastructure projects that make sense on multiple levels, financially, climate wise, health wise, sound wise, beauty wise. These are the sorts of infrastructure projects that benefit a city long term. We should be doing this exact same thing here.


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This…This Is Awesome, 40 ft Snow Tunnel Built By Cyclists

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 25

From Youtube:

The MBTA blocked access to a bike path with a giant snowbank when they plowed the parking lot at Wellington Station. We decided to do something about it!

more awesome back story here.

This is a great way to get things done, but honestly, what the hell MBTA just because your systems break down in the snow doesn’t mean you have to plow the rest of us in. Cycling and Pedestrian infrastructure shouldn’t be a secondary priority during snow storms.


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Cycling Adds Redundancy To A Transportation Network

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 18

I sometimes have odd thoughts on my ride into work.  Today’s were mostly around how nice the sun was, and how great it was to be riding, but as I locked up my bike (after an effortless commute), I realized something.  Bicycles add a lot of redundancy to a transportation network.

These thoughts were peculating in my mind because nearly every person at my job has complained about their commutes lately.  Be it by bus, by T, by car, or walking (the only people not complaining are the ones riding bikes…hmmm.)  Seems that if you dump enough snow on a city that has a lack of redundant transportation options and everything comes crashing down.

If the T is delayed, and the bus can’t run, and your car is stuck in a snow bank, you basically have the option of walking, or taking your bike.  While walking is a fine and useful form of transport, if you want to get some place really fast you will take the bike. Plus no one shovels the sidewalks.

The amount of infrastructure it takes to keep bikes “running” is relatively small, you don’t need to even plow the entire street, just a slim strip down the middle.  In a perfect world without on-street parking, you could have the roads clear enough for bikes in a relatively short period of time.  (as one commentator said “I still don’t understand why my tax dollars go to subsidize a nice paved parking spot in front of every car driver’s house. If people don’t have enough space on their own property to store all of their possessions, maybe they should just get rid of some of them?”)

Currently Boston has very low bicycle ridership, below 10% on even the best days.  But if we could get 15-30% of our population riding regularly (and making sure we put forth the minimum amount of effort needed to keep the infrastructure clear for them in the winter), we could dramatically reduce the burden on our public transportation infrastructure.  This would free up space for more people to take the bus, or the train, or even for folks that absolutely needed to drive (especially folks like fire/ambulance service).  These numbers are not as crazy as they might seem, as many places around the world have experienced this level of ridership (even in snowy places).

Increased redundancy means we are better able to handle extreme weather events (like say 6 feet of snow in a month), would have decreased levels of air pollution, less use of fossil fuels, and a whole host of other economic and health benefits.

The amount of money it would take to build and maintain a vibrant bicycle infrastructure would be peanuts compared to what we currently spend to just pay the interest on the dept the MBTA has.  This problem is well within our grasp, using technology that has already been demonstrated successful by other cities.

Or we can just keep doing the same thing, and having the same problems.  The choice is ours.

 


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Protected Bike Lanes Coming To Comm. Ave. Redesign!

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 12

Currently the world is drowning in snow, but this is huge news!!

From Livable Streets.

———-

We did it! 
 

Example of a protected bike lane.
After years of advocating for a balanced redesign plan for Commonwealth Avenue,the city has now agreed to a safer, more livable design that includes protected bike lanes!
As yesterday’s Boston Globe reported, “The city went back to the drawing board after an outcry by advocates, media criticism, and an impassioned public meeting two months ago at Boston University where more than 100 citizens showed up despite a nor’easter.”
For years, LivableStreets has been saying no to Boston’s inadequate plan for the redesign of Commonwealth Avenue that designed for car traffic at the expense of biking, walking, and transit. Thanks to over 1800 signatures and stories collected by our Street Ambassadors, and a strong coalition — including LivableStreets, Boston Cyclists Union, WalkBoston, MassBike, and BU Bikes — Boston and BU officials went back to the drawing board. Thank you City of Boston!
LivableStreets co-founder Jeff Rosenblum presenting a vision for a Comm. Ave. that prioritizes walking, biking, and public transportation.
Photo BU Free Press
While thrilled with the news, this project is not yet complete. Stay tuned: we expect the City of Boston to hold a public meeting to share their latest plans in the next month.
We will continue to work with the city and our partners to ensure pedestrian and traffic calming improvements are included in the new design and push for a concrete commitment on transit priority for the Green Line and buses. And we will be pushing for better clearing of sidewalks and bike lanes in winter!
For more information, check out our project page.
While this victory is very exciting, and it is news to celebrate, Comm. Ave. is just one piece of Boston’s transportation puzzle. LivableStreets staff, members, and volunteers are active 365 days a year working to create more livable streets.
Have you renewed your LivableStreets membership for 2015? Or not yet a member? No better time than the present! Sign up today.

 


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Bikes Not Bombs Winter Update

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 12

Lots going on over at BNB, check it out below!

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Mechanics at Earn-A-Bike
Youth Programs Accepting Applications

The next session of Earn-A-Bike will be March 23rd – April 30th, Mondays through Thursdays from 4:00m-7:00pm. The program is open to youth ages 12-18 who are interested in learning bike mechanics and safe riding skills. Applications are available online or at our Hub.

We are also accepting applications for Adult Instructor Training. In this program, adults are taught basic mechanic and mentorship skills by Youth Instructors and in exchange, participants MUST volunteer at least one day per week in Spring Earn-A-Bike.

Questions? Contact Ashley Leary, 617-522-0222 x101, [email protected]

2015 Bike-A-Thon
Half-Priced Bike-A-Thon Registration OpensMarch 1st!

Our 28th annual Bike-A-Thon will be held on Sunday, June 7th, with a raindate of Sunday, June 21st. We’ll have four routes – 80, 50, 30, and 10-miles. Please mark the date in your calendar and start thinking about recruiting friends to ride with you! Registration opens March 1st and is half price until March 31st. Get exciiitteedd!!

Check out photos and the amazing results from the2014 Bike-A-Thon and email[email protected] with any questions.

Bike Shop
New Sales at the BNB Shop

Until February 28th our Winter Overhaul (a complete overhaul of the bike + any parts installations) is $120 plus parts, $80 less than the in-season labor rate. Stop by the shop for a free estimate.

Complete Surly Bikes are now discounted $150 untilApril 1st! The bike we’re most excited about is our18″ Big Dummy Disc Cargo Bike which will sell for $1,560, 25% off the current retail price.

Linus Bikes are also reduced for 2015. We’ve got 3 and 8 speed models available for test rides, and can always special order other colors or models from Linus!

The next Tool Time will be on Monday March 2nd from 7-9pm, sign up by 6pm February 28th!Femmechanics will be at the shop on Monday March 9th from 7-9pm.

Photo by Will Daniels
Seeking Corporate Sponsors for Bike-A-Thon

Bikes Not Bombs’ 28th annual Bike-A-Thon is onJune 7th and we’re looking for local businesses to support the event by signing on as sponsors. Sponsorship is a golden opportunity to align your organization with well over 700 riders and volunteers on ride day, and with thousands more after the event. Sponsorship is easy, and available for every budget with various visibility options available.

Check out the levels available and contact Eric Mearns at [email protected] or 617-522-0222×113 with any questions.

Marc, Modesto & Frank
Volunteer of the Month – Frank Ashenuga

This month’s Volunteer of the Month award goes to Frank Ashenuga – Congratulations Frank! An avid, every day and all-weather bike commuter, Frank (pictured far right) joined BNB by taking Adult Instructor Training in the fall of 2014. Since then he has consistently supported youth programs and grown his involvement with BNB. After helping out with fall Earn-A-Bike, Frank started coming on Thursdays for Bike-In to keep up his mechanics skills and help the next generation of bike commuters. In his spare time, he helped out with 2014’s Phone-A-Thon, attended the 30th Anniversary Party, and helped start the Advanced Mechanics course for Adult Instructor Training graduates. Thanks for everything Frank!

Photo by Silke Hass
Volunteers Needed for the 2015 Bike-A-Thon!

BNB is seeking volunteers with trucks or vans to help set up Bike-A-Thon rest stops on June 7th! All volunteers get a t-shirt, free food all day, and they get to meet and support all of our amazing Bike-A-Thon cyclists!

If you’d like to provide support to riders on Bike-A-Thon day, contact Eric Mearns at[email protected], or 617-522-0222×113.

Steve's Great Divide
Steve’s Great Divide Ride

Steve Reynolds, a BNB volunteer, will be riding 2750 miles this summer from Canada to Mexico while raising funds for BNB, and he’s looking for other cyclists to join him! The route was planned by Adventure Cycling and travels substantial distance off-road. Feel free to tag along for one night or the whole 3 month trip.

Reach out to Steve directly with any questions atstevesgreatdivideride@gmail.com

News Outside of BNB

Boston Bike Party: Join the Bike Partiers as they #GetUnlucky at February’s party on Friday February 13th! Meet at Copley Square at 7:30pm.

World Bicycle Forum: The 2015 theme for the World Bicycle Forum is Cities For All! At the forum various stakeholders (individuals, groups, NGOs, businesses, and government agencies) will discuss how cities can be organized to the benefit of all it’s citizens. Bikes Not Bombs International Programs Team helped to coordinate this global event and two staff members will be attending! Medellin, Colombia from February 26th – March 1st.

SuccessLink: Bikes Not Bombs is hoping to receive funding through the City of Boston’s Summer Teen Employment, SuccessLink. If you are interested in working with BNB during the summer of 2015, please apply today!


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Support Cycle Tracks On The Arborway Feb 2nd

Written by Boston Biker on Jan 29

From the Boston Cyclist Union

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A rendering of a possible Bikeway for Everybody on The Arborway in Jamaica Plain. Rendering created by the Bike Union.

Since 2011, the Bike Union has helped lead local residents and other orgs to reconnect the Emerald Necklace for bicycles. Over the past 4 years, the coalition has successfully promoted an at-grade solution for the reconstruction for the Casey Overpass, and a buffered bike lane on Morton Street that now reaches halfway to Mattapan. One of the last remaining problems to solve is the connection between the Casey Arborway project and Jamaica Pond. Next week we have an opportunity to bridge one of the last gaps!The Arborway cycletrack discussions were sparked last year shortly after the #WinterBiker campaign created by the many neighborhood groups in the Bike Union’s Organizing Group took place. The momentum started by that campaign birthed the new Urban Paths & Parkways Committee at the Department for Conservation and Recreation, and then, due to an internal communication breakdown, the DCR’s maintenance crew painted inadequate bike infrastructure on the Arborway. This sparked a Bike Union letter campaign that asked the agency to remove the dangerous new bike facility to make space for a more thorough discussion of how this portion of the Arborway (from Eliot Street to South Street) could be made comfortable for cyclists. Now, the DCR is moving forward with that discussion!

There will be two public meetings for this project within one week. At the first (Feb. 2) the DCR will seek community input on what kind of bike facilities would work along the Arborway. This includes Kelly and Murray traffic circles. At the second (Feb. 5), the DCR will present alternatives and gather more input.

It is extremely important that the DCR hears from people like you who would prefer cycletracks on Mon., Feb. 2, and also that you or your friends or family also show up on Thurs., Feb. 5 to support the cycletrack alternative moving forward.

Show up, speak up for Bikeways for Everybody!

Arborway Bicycle Facilities Public Meeting
Mon., Feb. 2 6:30 to 8:30pm
and
Thurs., Feb. 5, 6:30 to 8:30pm
Arnold Arboretum Visitor Center/Hunnewell Building
125 Arborway, Boston


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Action Alert: Help MassBike With The Bike Safety Bill

Written by Boston Biker on Jan 23

From MassBike:

 

This month marks the start of a new two-year session in the Massachusetts Legislature, and MassBike has filed two bills designed to protect bicyclists and other vulnerable road users: the “Act To Protect Vulnerable Road Users” and the “Act To Protect Bicyclists In Bicycle Lanes.”

The Vulnerable Road Users Bill(SD273 in the Senate and HD2137 in the House) defines “vulnerable users” to include pedestrians, bicyclists, wheelchair users, motorcyclists, road workers, emergency responders, horseback riders, and others who are at greater risk on our roads. Beyond giving vulnerable users legal status, the bill sets minimum safe distances for passing vulnerable users, starting at three feet and increasing with speed. Read the full text here (pdf).

The Bike Lane Protection Bill (SD284 in the Senate and HD2130 in the House) addresses a common problem: It makes it a ticketable violation statewide for a motorist to park or stand in a marked bicycle lane or other on-street bicycle facility. When a motorist parks or stands in a bike lane, it endangers bicyclists by causing them to merge into traffic or squeeze between the parked vehicle and the curb or other parked cars. Read the full text here (pdf).

Read more about these bills on our website and in our fact sheet (pdf).

Thanks to Senator Will Brownsberger and Representative Dave Rogers, the bills have been filed in both the House and the Senate to get maximum exposure on Beacon Hill. We are actively seeking co-sponsors for these bills, and the deadline is rapidly approaching on January 30th! Having a lot of co-sponsors demonstrates strong support for a bill, and can help it move forward. That’s where all of you come in.

How You Can Help

  1. Get contact information for your state legislators here. Enter your home address, then click on the name of your State Senator and State Representative to get their email address or phone number.
  1. Email or call your State Senator, and ask her or him to support protecting pedestrians, bicyclists, and other vulnerable road users by co-sponsoring SD273 and SD284. Tell them to email [email protected] to sign on.
  1. Email or call your State Representative, and ask her or him to support protecting pedestrians, bicyclists, and other vulnerable road users by co-sponsoring HD2130 and HD2137. Tell them to email[email protected] to sign on.
  1. Email (or cc) [email protected] to let us know who you contacted.

If you have any questions, email [email protected] or call 617-542-2453. Thanks so much for your help. You are our political power – we cannot do it without you!


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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • a little back ground March 1, 2015
      Tweetplease excuse my grhamer and spelling i was never a shakespear,or a hawthorn. for the past eight years i have been working in paper mill’s throught mass. and on and off i have substituted my income working for a security … Continue reading →
      intentionalmessenger
    • City Of Boston Bikes Program Update February 26, 2015
      TweetLots of good stuff in here: ——————– Boston Bike Week Festival & Bike Fridays From April-August, on one Friday a month we’ll host a party on City Hall Plaza for cyclists. In May we’ll hold a special Boston Bike Week … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • I Feel Like I Need One Of These, Fake Bamboo Cars For Bikes February 26, 2015
      TweetJust because you can slide past me with an inch or two to spare, while you race forward to get to that next red light, doesn’t mean you should. Maybe if we all drove around with these car’s would afford … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • London Approves City Wide Bike Super Highway February 26, 2015
      TweetThis is exactly what Boston needs. From the web Catering to some of the 170,000 cyclists that ride across London every day, this segregated bicycle lane will stretch from west to east, pass through the heart of the city and … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Power To The Pedals Screening February 25, 2015
      TweetWenzday and the folks at Metro Pedal power are awesome, check out this great movie about their efforts to revolutionize the way goods are delivered in big cities. Power to the Pedals: Wenzday Jane and the Culture of Change Trailer … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • This…This Is Awesome, 40 ft Snow Tunnel Built By Cyclists February 25, 2015
      Tweet From Youtube: The MBTA blocked access to a bike path with a giant snowbank when they plowed the parking lot at Wellington Station. We decided to do something about it! more awesome back story here. This is a great … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Cycling Adds Redundancy To A Transportation Network February 18, 2015
      TweetI sometimes have odd thoughts on my ride into work.  Today’s were mostly around how nice the sun was, and how great it was to be riding, but as I locked up my bike (after an effortless commute), I realized … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Protected Bike Lanes Coming To Comm. Ave. Redesign! February 12, 2015
      TweetCurrently the world is drowning in snow, but this is huge news!! From Livable Streets. ———- We did it!    Example of a protected bike lane. After years of advocating for a balanced redesign plan for Commonwealth Avenue,the city has now … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Bikes Not Bombs Winter Update February 12, 2015
      TweetLots going on over at BNB, check it out below! ———————————– Youth Programs Accepting Applications The next session of Earn-A-Bike will be March 23rd – April 30th, Mondays through Thursdays from 4:00m-7:00pm. The program is open to youth ages 12-18 … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Hello world! February 10, 2015
      Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging! Continue reading →
      thecommunityspoke