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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.
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.
Tags: bikes good, cars bad, livable streets, money money money, study
Posted in advocacy, Bike Business, Commuting, education, news | No Comments »
From the BCU:
Bostonians making polite requests for a clear path on one of the city’s key bike routes were met with disdain from the state agency responsible for maintaining the paths.
With a rapid-response social media campaign, Boston residents put a face on the purported “.05%” of cyclists who bike through the winter. Photo: Boston Cyclists Union
Here’s how one unnamed official from the Massachusetts’ Department of Conservation and Recreation responded in an internal email thread to a message from a Boston resident asking for better snow removal on the Southwest Corridor, an important off-street bike path. The leaked email was published on the Boston site Universal Hub (emphasis ours):
Frankly, I am tired of our dedicated team wasting valuable time addressing the less than .05% of all cyclists who choose to bike after a snow/ice event… We should not spend time debating cyclists with poor judgement [sic] and unrealistic expectations, and stick with [the staffer]‘s recommendation that they find other transportation. If someone is completely depending on a bike for year-round transportation, they are living in the wrong city.
Oh man, someone either doesn’t know how to do math, or hasn’t been outside lately. I see literally dozens of cyclists riding EVERY DAY, through all sorts of weather. If I am seeing that many while riding around that means there are likely hundreds of people cycling to work every day even on the most shitty of winter days, and on cold but dry days many hundreds.
Even more would do so if the DCR cleared snow out of bike lanes/paths. It’s not so much that I get pissed when the paths are not plowed to perfection (although I was on the SWC today and it was in a horrible state), but the attitude of this person is just atrocious, do they really think so little of cyclists? Would they say the same thing to people driving cars if the roads were not cleaned well enough? Perhaps people driving a car in Boston are living in a city that just can’t accommodate clearing the roads…maybe this person needs to find a new line of work?
I have started to think that people are not skilled enough to drive cars in the snow and that doing so puts them and others at risk for injury. I would think the DCR would welcome more cyclists, as it means less cars, and less road damage, and less work for them….not to mention all the lives that would be saved by getting people with only a basic set of car driving skills off the road in the winter.
hit up the BCU website if you want to help fight this kind of silly behavior.
Tags: DCR, path plowing, road rage
Posted in advocacy, Commuting | 3 Comments »
Some students want to talk to you!
From the email:
“We are a group of students taking a class called UOCD at Olin College, or “user oriented collaborative design” where we work with a people group to conceptually design some sort of product or service specifically for the user group. We are not conducting a research study or making a finished product, we just want to learn more about our user group so that we can design something for our class.
My group is interested in people who bike to work. If you are a person who bikes to work, it would be great if we could have a phone interview or even better if we can talk to you in person (we can come to boston). We assure you that everything we talk about will be confidential and used just for the class. For privacy, we will absolutely keep you anonymous in our notes.
Tags: ride to work, science, students
Posted in Commuting, Questions | No Comments »
Good lord the roads are proper shit today. Layers of ice and slush and lots and lots of rump braille snow. I went slow, and steady, and rode straight upright and didn’t have any problems with slipping, but damn it was a bit nerve wracking on the hills. It was grade A gross. But you know what, even crawling at half speed, even though my toes were a little wet, and even though it was super putrid out, it WAS STILL BETTER THAN TAKING THE BUS!
It wasn’t that cold, it wasn’t that nasty, and I got home only 10 minutes slower than normal.
I saw other cyclists, and I saw evidence of their trails, so I know I wasn’t the only yahoo out there today, share your adventures below.
Tags: but in ice, ice, nasty out, snow, the world will not end in fire
Posted in bostonbiker, Commuting | No Comments »
An excellent piece on winter riding. I see Bekka about every three days on my way to work. Its a nice part of my day to see the same cyclists on a daily/semi-daily basis.
She shows just how easy it is to get to work, even in the winter!
Tags: bikeyface, commuting, video, wgbh, winter
Posted in Commuting, news, video | 3 Comments »
This winter I have felt like a native of the northern reaches, developing dozens of words for snow. Here are a few:
Play-dough: When the snow has been thoroughly mixed with road salt, but its just too damn cold to melt, you get play-dough snow. Has the feel of clay, and squirts out from between your front fork like a play-dough fun factory.
Rump Braille: When the snow hardens to the ground in little archipelagos of solid ice. These seem to form when the snow has been packed down by cars, and then it warms up real fast and rivulets of water run through the snow only to freeze again real fast, leaving little islands of solid ice. So named because of the feeling on your ass as you roll over them. If only I could read their secret language.
Solid Water: A type of snow that for all intents looks totally solid, until you hit it with your front wheel and it explodes into water. MAGIC! I would imagine that there are just enough ice crystals in the slush to keep it solid until impact. This snow can be cause brown shorts, as you think you are about to hit a giant ice ball and crash only to have it splatter harmlessly all over the road.
The Good Stuff: Crunchy for traction, but light and fluffy enough not to stick to your bike. This is the snow we all dream about riding on. Makes a satisfying “Crrrrssshhhh” as you ride on it.
Road Boogers: Much like ancient boulders left behind when the glaciers retreated, these mounds of snow are left after the plow comes through. Ranging in size from “golf ball” to “holy shit I’m going to die!” These clumps are usually not attached to the road, and therefor wander about as cars and pedestrians paw at them. Avoid the big ones and you should be ok.
Salt Lick: Not snow at all, but looks like snow. Its when the plow trucks lay down so much salt that it appears in heaps like snow on the ground. Usually solid, but sometimes like a big pile of sand. Avoid.
Trails of our Ancestors: When you ride on snow that many other cyclists have already ridden over. You can see the tracks of all the wheels that have come before you, giving you a sense of security knowing its a good route, as well as letting you know that you are not the only one braving the storm. Gives you sense of camaraderie even if no one else is around.
These are but a few of the many names that could be applied to biking snow. What are some you have thought of?
The first 3 people to leave good snow names + definitions in the comments will get cycling books sent to them free in the mail. (I will decided which ones are good)
If there are more than 3 good ones, I might go find some more cycling stuff and mail that out as prizes as well.
Tags: contest, names, snow
Posted in Commuting, fun | 4 Comments »
Would you rather have this:
That was THE BEST COMMUTE I have had in weeks. The roads were sloppy as hell, more often than not my back wheel was not behind my front wheel, but it was sooooo nice. No cars, no pedestrians, so peaceful and serine. Like the whole city had decided to slow down, and be calm.
I also saw about 10 other cyclists out there having the times of their lives. We all smiled and laughed at one another, it was a good time to be out. We all had that look in our eye like “we have discovered something no one else knows about, and its awesome!”
Some of my co-workers think I am nuts for riding a bicycle in weather like this, but I think they are the ones who are nuts. You would have to be crazy to get into a multi-thousand pound vehicle capable of sliding out of control and crushing you or someone else in weather like this. Cars/trucks are just too big and dangerous to drive when the weather is bad.
The biggest problem I was going to run into today was plopping over into 5 inches of fluffy snow…or being crushed by a car…which are too dangerous to be on the roads on days like today. Lucky for me it most everyone decided to walk or take the T, so I more or less had the road to myself.
What was your morning commute like?
Tags: awesome, commuting, open thread, snow storm
Posted in Commuting | 2 Comments »
We have all had to yell at motorists, I can’t stop laughing at Bikeyface’s quest to get better at yelling.
So good. Read the rest here.
Tags: bikeyface, Comics, hillarious, yelling
Posted in Commuting, fun | No Comments »