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Oh The Irony

Written by Boston Biker on Apr 15

I was almost run over by a casket supply truck this morning…nice big box truck with “Mathews casket international” on the side.  I know this because I got a close look at it when it screamed by me with only inches to spare.  If you see one of these trucks driving around, watch out, one of them is piloted by an asshole.

ASSHOLES!

I pulled up to him at the next red light (because lets be honest you never make it more than a block during the morning rush hour with hitting a red light, unless you’re on a bike) and knocked on his window. He declined to roll it down, so I screamed “ARE YOU TRYING TO DRUM UP BUSINESS!  YOU PASSED ME WAY TO CLOSE!” He stared at me with dead, dull eyes, I knew it was a lost cause and drove off.

It amazes me the kind of casual violence people will display towards each other when they are in cars/trucks.  This asshole nearly killed me so he could move forward 100 yards and then stop at a red light.  I see this kind of behavior all the time.  Its like the hours and hours of mind numbing stop and go traffic has decreased their mental acuity to the point that they no longer have any empathy for their fellow human beings.  Its not just cyclists, motorists seem to display the same lack of caring towards pedestrians and other folks in cars.

Makes me more and more convinced we need to do everything in our power to make cars and trucks a thing of the past. Be careful out there folks.


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Posted in Bike Business, Commuting | 3 Comments »

Boston To Ban Cars In Downtown

Written by Boston Biker on Apr 01

There were some big announcements at last nights 6th Annual Boston Bikes update.  I was impressed with the growth in the bike lane network, and the expansion of the bike share.  But what really floored me was the surprise appearance by Marty Walsh himself announcing that Boston would follow the lead of cities like Paris, and ban all motor traffic (except cabs and delivery trucks) in the down town region.  Siting reasons from lack of space for parking, to old fashion road layouts, and the looming threat of global warming to a city at sea level, the Mayor made a very strong argument for banning cars from the downtown metro area.

marty-walsh

We are one of the top ranked  accessible cities in North America for public transportation, and yet we have one of the least conducive road systems for cars.    At the same time we are wasting potential billions in economic potential by devoting a majority of space downtown to car infrastructure.  As if that wasn’t enough, our great city is only feet above a sea that is rising year after year due to the disastrous effects of global warming.  Mayor Menino famously said ‘the car is no longer king in Boston’ well my friends I am here to tell you, the king is dead.  We will no longer waste hundreds of millions of dollars supporting a technology that is killing us, wasting our money, and destroying the future for our children.

At which point I have to tell you the room went a little nuts. After people calmed down Walsh went on to detail a sensible plan of restrictions on car travel in the down town area. Starting with a congestion charge of 75$ a day to drive into the city. At the same time parking will be raised to 20$ an hour, and most on street parking will be eliminated in favor of wider sidewalks, bike lanes, dedicated bus/cab lanes, and green space.

The money raised will go to improvements in the T and bus infrastructure. There will still be access for people with disabilities who rely on cars for travel, including better placement of handicap parking spaces closer to entrances to buildings, and better curb treatment for people in wheel chairs, and pedestrians.

Walsh also detailed plans to return many of the side streets to “people powered” boulevards, where only pedestrians and cyclists are allowed. He showed images of the popular people only areas that NYC has recently installed.

times-square-nyc-chairs-photo0002

Special delivery depots will be developed for centralized delivery of goods to businesses, and electrically assisted delivery bikes will be hired to take items to their final destination.

Metro-Pedal-Power

It was a real tour-de-force of fact based planning. Citing study after study that showed that cars were dangerous, bad for the economy, and bad for the people driving them, and directly leading to the death of dozens of people every year. He went on to say:

As April approaches you would have to be a fool to continue to believe that we can continue with business as usual and avert the catastrophic results of relying on internal combustion fueled automobiles. We must change to a human based model of planning, for our own health, for the health of our economy, and for the health of our planet. As such I plan to remove cars from our downtown, replace them with vibrant public transportation, bike lanes, better walking infrastructure, and to reclaim the wasted space dedicated to cars to fuel economic development. Thank you.

Copenhagen’s Car-free streets & Slow-speed zones from Streetfilms on Vimeo.

The crowd was on their feet, cheering. I stuck around after trying to get to talk to Mayor Walsh, but he had ducked out surrounded by cyclists wanting to shake his hand. It was a good night, and I left feeling hopeful about the future.


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Posted in advocacy, Bike Business | 3 Comments »

Hubway Opens April 2nd!

Written by Boston Biker on Mar 25

You have probably been seeing the stations being put back out, thats because its almost time for Hubway to open for the season!

More from Hubway Below.

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Add a description
BOSTON, BROOKLINE, SOMERVILLE REJOIN CAMBRIDGE
as Hubway reopens system-wide on Wednesday, April 2nd.

“Spring must be on its way if Hubway is setting up shop!”

“I get so excited when I see Hubway stations back again #springishere”

“Yaaaaasss can’t wait for Hubway season #suchatease.”

 

Snow may be on the way this week, but we have something for you to look forward to! Consider yourself the first to know: After a successful year-round pilot program in Cambridge, Hubway’s system-wide operations begin anew with an official reopening onWednesday, April 2nd.

 

The Hubway team has been hard at work deploying stations, and nearly 100 stations (out of 140) are expected to be operational by April 2nd, with most remaining stations to be rolled out in early April. Please note: stations along Boylston Street in Brookline and Boston will not be deployed until after the Boston Marathon.

 

For up-to-the-minute station, bike, and dock availability, we recommend using theSpotcycle smartphone app, or Hubway Tracker from a desktop computer.
Excited for the return of system-wide Hubway? Let us know why you plan to ride #HubwayEveryday. Take a peek at the video below and spread the word!

Get ready to ride.

The Team at Hubway

WHY WILL YOU RIDE #HUBWAYEVERYDAY IN 2014?
Post a short video telling us why, and you could be eligible to win stuff!

Upload your videos and post them to us via Twitter @Hubway

Need some ideas to inspire you?

Check out this video to hear why Molly and Claire ride…

 

SAVE THE DATES!

 

Monday, March 31, 5:45pm, 6th Ann Boston Bike Update
RSVP HERE to join Boston Mayor Walsh & Boston Bikes Director Nicole Freedman in the “Great Room” at Faneuil Hall to learn how biking has doubled in Boston over the last 6 years, who helped to make it happen, and more about the future of biking in Boston!

Wednesday, April 2, Noon-2pm
Hubway’s Official System-Wide Reopening Day Party

Free food! Giveaways! Special Guests! Details announced 3/31.

 

EXCLUSIVE OFFERS FOR HUBWAY MEMBERS

Good things happen to people who share bicycles.

See below for offers available uniquely to you, our Hubway members and friends.

 

Instacart logo

Groceries delivered in 1 Hour to all of Boston, Brookline, Cambridge, and Somerville. Hubway members click the Instacart logo to get$10 off your first order + free deliveryTry it now.

Heartbeat of Home ad1

Heartbeat of Home at the Citi Wang Theatre! Created by the Producers and Director of RiverdanceHeartbeat of Home is a music and dance spectacular featuring components of traditional Irish, Latin, & Afro-Cuban music & dance, and Hubway members can be the first to see it. Click the image & use code HUBHOHto receive 20% off select tickets to the 3/26, 3/27, 3/30 6:30pmonly, 4/2, 4/3, & 4/4 performances. Offer valid through 3/27.

 


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Hubway To Reopen Soon

Written by Boston Biker on Mar 17

Got this from Hubway, looks like they will all be back soon!

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SPRING IS ON ITS WAY! Hubway’s full system reopening soon.
More daylight hours. Freak snowstorms. Hubway stations reappearing in Boston, Brookline, and Somerville. Two out of three of these are sure signs that spring is on the way. You may have noticed the arrival of some stations in your neighborhood over the last few days, and there are more to come in the next few weeks. We are looking forward to the system-wide reopening of Hubway very soon.

 

We will be sure to let you know when you will be able to Hubway across the entire network, but until then, continue to ride on in Cambridge! Please note that only Cambridge stations are operational at this time. Other stations will not accept bicycles until they are fully connected. Stay tuned to the Hubway website for the latest information, and check the Spotcycle app for available stations. If you have any questions about station availability, you can call customer service at 855-4HUBWAY (448-2929).

 

Spring will be here soon. Get ready to ride.

 

The Team at Hubway

DATA NERDS: REJOICE! 2013 Comprehensive Hubway Trip Data Released

Ever want to know which Hubway stations are the most popular? How long it takes to ride from South Station to Brookline Village? Or how many people take out bikes in the middle of the night? And where the heck are they going at that hour anyway?!?

Well, if you’re feeling creative, nerdy, or just downright curious, and want to play around with how Hubway trip data can provide a window into major travel patterns in metro-Boston, visit the Hubway Data Challenge page today! In February, the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), in partnership with Hubway, the Cities of Boston, Cambridge, and Somerville, and the Town of Brookline, released new and comprehensive trip data.

 

In addition to the Data Visualizations submitted at the end of the 2012 season, you’ll have access to all sorts of data, including:

  • Duration of trips.
  • Trip start & end stations, dates, and times.
  • Individual Bike ID numbers.
  • Member Type (Annual, Monthly, Casual).
  • General member demographic info.
Find everything you’d want (and then some) for all Hubway rides through November 2013, packed into a tidy, downloadable 17 MB CSV. You can also register for direct access to the MAPC’s Data API. What breakthrough idea will you come up with?
WE LOVE BIKES. WE LOVE FLOWERS. WHO DOESN’T?

The Boston Flower & Garden Show is big, exciting, and entertaining! It’s also the perfect place to hang out with us as together we await the efflorescence of spring and celebrate Hubway’s upcoming full-system reopening by giving away free 24-Hour passes! The show runs through March 16, and you can find us there on Saturday, March 15th. Click here for more information on the show!

HUBWAY BIKE PARTNER NEWS

 

BOSTON PICKED FOR NATIONAL PROGRAM TO HELP SPEED UP BIKE LANE INSTALLATIONS, March 11, 2014, BostonMagazine.com
“The country’s ‘leading bicycle movement’ has selected Boston as one of just six cities in the country to get new bike lanes designed to help keep cyclists separated from vehicles on the roadways…” Click here to read Steve Annear’s story.

[VIDEO] #WINTERWONDERHUBWAY PHOTO CONTEST WINNERS RECEIVE THEIR PRIZES, March 11, 2014, Hubway blog
“When Hubway teamed up with the awesome crew at Timbuk2 to present the #WinterWonderHubway photo contest, we knew we would be introduced to some of our most creative and dedicated Hubway riders…” Click here to read more and watch the video.


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What Does Everyone Think Of These?

Written by Boston Biker on Mar 07

More here.

 

I am torn…looks cool, also looks…fragile.


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Posted in Bike Business, crafts | 4 Comments »

Two New Studies Show Moving Away From Cars Improves Business

Written by Boston Biker on Feb 28

And not just business but a lot of other things, safety,health, quality of life.  But no one really cares about any of that unless it makes you more money…so the headline reads “improves business” not “makes you feel less horrible.”  But hey if it takes an increase in earnings to get people to abandon cars (and car parking), so be it.  Any port in a storm right.

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From Livable Streets:

Myth: Businesses need parking spaces in front of their store to thrive

Debunked: Complete streets are increasing economic vitality across the country.

Improved accessibility and a more welcoming street environment are now proven to generate higher sales. In particular, studies find that protected bike lanes and increased bike parking promote economic growth.

Check out the Protected Bike Lanes Mean Business report by PeopleForBikes and the Alliance for Biking & Walking, and the Economic Benefits of Sustainable Streets study by New York City Department of Transportation for more stats and facts on this topic.

 

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Posted in advocacy, Bike Business, Commuting, education, news | 2 Comments »

Urban AdvenTours Hiring!

Written by Boston Biker on Jan 27

From the email:

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Despite the freezing weather Urban AdvenTours, Boston’s Downtown Bike Shop, is looking forward to spring and summer and need knowledgeable cyclists to help us with our tours, rentals, bike shop and repairs.

A variety of schedules and positions are available from full to part time. Positions like Bicycle Tour Guide, Sales Associate, Marketing Manager, Bicycle Concierge and Shop Manager are available. We are looking for folks with a range of experiences who can fit into our fun and friendly staff!  A love of bikes is a must!

More information and additional openings can be found on our Craigslist post
(http://boston.craigslist.org/gbs/bus/4290506865.html) or website
(http://www.urbanadventours.com/employment/).

We are looking forward to making our 10th Anniversary year the best yet!


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Code Base Update

Written by Boston Biker on Jan 11

Upgraded the back end code of the site. Slight performance increase, and stability upgrade. Hopefully you wont notice a thing, if you do let me know.


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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Ghost Bike Installed For Owen McGrory April 15, 2014
      Tweet (photo via U-Hub) On this blustery rainy day lets all take a moment to think about Owen McGrory. Who lost his life when he was struck by a sanitation truck.  One person dying on a bicycle is one person … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Ghost Bike Installed For Owen McGrory April 15, 2014
      Tweet (photo via U-Hub) On this blustery rainy day lets all take a moment to think about Owen McGrory. Who lost his life when he was struck by a sanitation truck.  One person dying on a bicycle is one person … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Interview Series: Tom Klein April 15, 2014
      Continue reading →
      cyclemom
    • Oh The Irony April 15, 2014
      TweetI was almost run over by a casket supply truck this morning…nice big box truck with “Mathews casket international” on the side.  I know this because I got a close look at it when it screamed by me with only inches … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Bike Lanes (a couple of interesting articles) April 14, 2014
      TweetA couple of interesting articles about bike lanes and their affect on traffic congestion (or as is demonstrated in these articles, the lack thereof. First there is: Bike Lanes Don’t Cause Traffic Jams If You’re Smart About Where You Build … Continue reading →
      Liam
    • Did American Bicycling Start In Newton Massachusetts? April 14, 2014
      TweetAs the old saying goes: “you learn something new everyday.” This is particularly true for bicycling where information sources are spread out instead of being housed in a central location. The interesting tidbit I picked up yesterday caught my eye … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • May The Road Rise Up To Meet You, And The Wind Be Always At Your Back April 12, 2014
      Tweet   It was very nice outside today, I hope you all got out and rode till the sun went down.
      Boston Biker
    • Ready for My Close Up April 12, 2014
      TweetA medication in are http://www.graduatesmakingwaves.com/raz/canadian-pharmacy-viagra.php really mascara What eyelash grade Sildenafil Citrate been attempted this http://www.sanatel.com/vsle/ringworm-medication.html to works will your http://www.pwcli.com/bah/viagra-canada.php do closed your http://www.graduatesmakingwaves.com/raz/cheapest-cialis.php lov […]
      mbudd
    • One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other April 11, 2014
      Tweet   Seems cyclists are not the only ones enjoying the increase in sunshine.  This thing looks amazing.  I was pretty impressed with the relatively simple nature of this beast.  Get solar panel, get electric scooter, combine.
      Boston Biker
    • Bikes Not Bombs Update April 11, 2014
      Tweet2013 Annual Report Release – Big vision, Concrete Strategies, Real Impact It is with great pride and excitement that we present our 2013 Annual Report! 2013 was a busy year for Bikes Not Bombs; we collected more bikes than ever before, … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker