The Latest From BostonBiker.org
News, Events, Updates
Register now for Bikes Not Bombs’ biggest and most exciting event of the year! Our 27th annual Bike-A-Thon will be heldSunday, June 8th, 2014. (Rain date: Sunday, June 22nd.) Join hundreds of riders for an amazing day of cycling and fun while raising critical funds to support Bikes Not Bombs’ work in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, and right here in Boston. The Bike-A-Thon brings together riders of all ages and skill-levels and every rider makes a difference! This year, we’re releasing fourBRAND NEW routes: 80 miles, 50 miles, 30 miles, and 10-miles (very family friendly!) In the afternoon, riders meet back in the Stony Brook Park for an After Party which includes fun activities, music, and free food!
Sign up today to take advantage of our early registration special! We’re offering half price registration during the month of March, it’s only $10 for adults and $5 for youth!
Be sure to stop by our event website, Hub, or Bike Shop to register to ride and find out more about Bike-A-Thon 2014!
Also, you can RSVP to the Bike-A-Thon Facebook event, share it on your wall, and invite your friends to join in the fun!
Bici-Tec is an appropriate technology social enterprise in Guatemala that repairs and sells bicycles, designs, builds and distributes bicycle-powered machines such as water pumps and corn grinders, and also trains other people to design and build bicycle machines. These bicycle machines offer an economic and environmentally sustainable energy alternative to rural families and communities, as well as being a locally produced and locally repairable technology. In the words of Carlos Marroquin, Bici-Tec founder, “bicycle machines offer a middle ground between the artisanal and the industrial.”
Please join us to help BNB load bikes to Bici-Tec in Guatemala!
TIME: Sunday, April 13th from 10am to 5pm. Drop in for an hour or stay all day.
PLACE: The BNB warehouse at 10 Harvard Street in Dorchester
DETAILS: Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Equal Exchange coffee will be generously donated by City Feed & Supply.
This January, BNB’s shipment to the Village Health Workers in Amuru, Northern Uganda, arrived without a scratch. In addition to the 400 adult mountain bikes, BNB loaded tons of parts and tools, including an AMAZING donation of tools from PEDRO’S, filling multiple tool boxes. These super high-quality PEDRO’S tools will be used to repair the 550 Village Health Workers’ bicycles for many years to come, equipping them with the transportation to provide rural health care to the 40,000 residents of post-conflict Amuru Sub-County. THANK YOU PEDRO’S for contributing toward these life-saving impacts of bicycles in Northern Uganda!
On Thursday, March 13th from 5-7pm Bikes Not Bombs’ youth will join together with International Programs Coordinator, Charlotte Fagan, to give a report back and presentation from their respective travels. BNB youth will share the skills and lessons gained from the Youth Bike Summit in New York City and Charlotte will present the highlights from the World Bicycle Forum she attended in Brazil in February. This is a wonderful opportunity to share and learn community organizing strategies from around the world. We’ll hold a Q&A session following the presentations. Light refreshments will be served. RSVPs are not required but encouraged. Feel free to drop in for a couple of minutes, or stay the entire time! Email[email protected] with any questions.
Want to take a fun “Lunch Brake” with Bikes Not Bombs and your coworkers? We are traveling to workplaces for brown-bag lunches – or “Lunch Brakes” – to talk about our work and impact. Lunch Brakes are a great way to introduce your colleagues to Bikes Not Bombs and connect them with ways to get involved. We will share stories from inspirational leaders, videos about our work, information about upcoming events, and open up the space for Q&A. If you are interested in spreading the word about BNB and hosting us at your office, please contact Erica Rotman, Director of Fundraising & Events, at [email protected].
The popular BNB hoodie is back in stock. We now have a full size run of Small to XXL as well as Youth Large. Hoodies are $40 and can be shipped worldwide ($7 domestic/more for international). Just stop by to pick one up or call the shop if you’d like to order one.
The BNB Shop is having a Winter Glove Blowout! Select styles marked down up to 50% off. This includes many of our warmest gloves and some less bulky Springtime gloves as well.
The BNB Shop is now open 7 days a week. Our hours are Monday 11am-7pm; Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday 8am-8pm; Friday 11am-7pm; Saturday 10am-6pm; and Sunday 12 noon-5pm.
We are still accepting applications to Spring Earn-A-Bike and Girls In Action.
Visit our website for program descriptions and dates.
The February Youth Employee of the Month is: Mykala Jordan!
Mykala Jordan is a first time Youth Instructor, but you wouldn’t know it from watching her. She steps up to take leadership opportunities whenever she can. From fundraising to send youth to New York for the Youth Bike Summit or waking up on a Saturday morning to recruit youth for programs. She takes charge in fundraising, outreach, and learning new skills. Mykala gets along well with everyone, is up for doing any task, and brings a positive and happy perspective to BNB’s Youth Programs. Without a doubt Mykala deserves the spotlight for her work. Congrats, Mykala.
We are thrilled to announce that Natalie Brady has joined our team as the new Communications Manager! Natalie originally hails from Kansas City, KS but has come to love Boston while attending Northeastern University. Natalie brings experience working at a local non-profits, and has served as a manager at Urban AdvenTours. At Bikes Not Bombs, Natalie is responsible for media connections and outreach, and is a critical part of the Bike-A-Thon and Development & Communications teams. When she’s not Instagraming her new favorite pictures, she can be found reading/watching Game of Thrones, trying new vegetarian dishes and hanging out with her roommate’s dog. Please join us in giving Natalie a warm welcome! She can be reached at 617-522-0222 x 104 or[email protected].
With the tremendous community support that BNB has, we’re forced to keep up with a rushing volume of incoming donations, especially during year-end. The paperwork is no simple task, but luckily we have Lauren Forbes, whose diligence and commitment to BNB has helped us plow through the mountains of data entry and donation receipts. She has been volunteering every week in the office since last summer and now has become our most experienced active office volunteer. She’s also been to several container loadings! And as a cyclist, she enjoys utilizing our volunteer credit system to earn used parts for her bike. Thanks for all your help, Lauren!
Bikes Not Bombs’ 27th annual Bike-A-Thon is on June 8th and we’re looking for local companies and businesses to support the event by signing on as sponsors. Becoming an event sponsor is a great way for companies to advertise their support of Bikes Not Bombs. We can feature company logos on event signage, our website, and depending on the level of sponsorship, there are opportunities to be included in our Jamaica Plain Gazette ads as well as on our t-shirt. And, this year we’re offering free Bike-A-Thon registration to a limited number of sponsors’ employees as a way to encourage staff to get involved with the event.
While we are seeking in-kind gifts for our raffle, we’re most interested in fiscal sponsorship because unrestricted funds provide us with the greatest flexibility and have the deepest impact on our work. Check out the 2013 Bike-A-Thon results which lists all sponsors at the bottom of the page.
Boston Bike Update
Monday, March 31, Fanueil Hall, Great Room. Doors Open at 5:45, presentations begin at 6:15. Boston Mayor Marty Walsh has confirmed his attendance! Biking has doubled in Boston in the last 6 years. Want to know how, why and who helped make this happen? Wondering how biking fits into larger transportation network? Join us for this sixth annual event with Boston Bikes Director, Nicole Freedman. Register for this event to hear Nicole discuss the future of biking in Boston, including end of year surveys, Connect Historic Boston, the Network Plan, and the path forward under Mayor Walsh.
The New Opportunities for Bicycle and Pedestrian Infrastructure Financing Act of 2014 (NOBPIFA) will allow communities to take advantage of low-cost financing for projects that make streets and sidewalks safer for all users through a new federal credit assistance program that would direct millions specifically for low-income communities. The NOBPIFA bill would create a new low-interest, long-term loan program for communities to build out their bicycling and walking networks – and would require 25% of the funding be spent in low income neighborhoods. Please tell your representative to support the bill
EcoLogic Development Fund is now hiring a Communications Officer! EcoLogic collaborates with the rural poor in Central America and Mexico and helps local communities identify, evaluate, and prioritize their conservation and natural resource needs. They then work with these communities to get them what they need to restore and conserve the tropical ecosystems where they live and on which they rely for basic necessities and well-being. This can include skills, financing, materials, access to decision makers and experts, hands-on experience, and other forms of support.
Tags: bikes not bombs, update
Posted in advocacy, news | No Comments »
In a head scrathing decison the MBTA has announced it wont provide a train for this years Midnight Marathon Ride.
Cyclists who rely on a special Commuter Rail train to travel between Boston and Hopkinton for the annual Midnight Marathon Bike Ride will have to find a new way to get to the starting line for this year’s event.
After the Boston Athletic Association allegedly asked the organizers of the ride to derail their annual 26.2-mile trek, the MBTA announced that a set of train cars reserved last year for shipping hundreds of cyclists to the starting line would not be arriving at South Station in 2014.
“A special train, dedicated to bikes, will not be provided this year,” said MBTA Spokesman Joe Pesaturo in an email to Boston. Pesaturo said the train would not be giving rides to the cyclists “at the request of local public safety officials,” not the BAA. Standard rules for bikes on off-peak Commuter Rail trains will be in effect, which means a maximum of four bikes will be allowed per coach.
The BAA asked Midnight Marathon Bike Ride organizers not to host the event, citing safety concerns. Last week, the BAA put out a set of specific security guidelines in response to last year’s bombings at the finish line.
Peter Judge, spokesman with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, the state office that works with BAA officials to address security issues both prior to the marathon, and on race day, said the reason for asking cyclists to cancel their trip “dove tails” on last year’s bombing, but it’s actually just a general concern voiced by officials in municipalities that the riders pass through. “Anytime you are going to send 1,000 people out at midnight on bikes, you have the potential for issues. [The bombings] aside, this is something that has been discussed every year, and there has been concerns,” he said. “It’s strictly a public safety issue and the timing of it. It’s a cool idea, but it’s just raw with potential. That being said, we are asking them not to have the ride.”
I feel like this is the worst possible response to a terrorist act. “They who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” We are basically saying that if you do something horrible to us, we will change our entire way of life and relinquish basic freedoms. I guess 9/11 and the response to it has taught us nothing.
You are allowed to take your bike on the train, you are allowed to ride your bike on the road, and neither act is a danger to anyone. If the powers that be are concerned that people bike riding on a road at midnight with no crowds is more dangerous than having 26.2 miles of packed human beings watching the actual marathon than they are not thinking straight.
I simply don’t see how they are going to lock down all 26.2 miles of the course. I don’t see how they are going to search every person who wants to watch the marathon. Crowds if anything will be bigger this year. No cowardly act of violence is going to keep Bostonians from participating in a symbol of unity and international togetherness.
I don’t know where the person in the story above is getting this 4 bikes per car thing (that rule is not listed here), but if that is how they are going to play it, we simply show up as soon as rush hour is over (7pm), and cram every car with 4 cyclists all night until midnight. Folding bikes are also allowed at all times on any train, so bring your folder if you got one.
I say we all show up at south station and buy a ticket. And then we cram ourselves onto any train available, we rent some buses, carpool, get a U-haul, hell lets make this 26.2 mile ride into a 52.4 mile ride and do it out and back. This sort of panic and fear based foolishness shouldn’t keep us from enjoying our legal rights to use the trains and roads. Feel free to use the comments below to set up ride shares, truck rentals, etc.
I think its important that we make this ride bigger and better than ever as a symbolic gesture, to raise a big middle finger to anyone that would use fear as a tool of persuasion. Don’t be confused, train or no train this ride is going to happen this year. Bring a friend because its going to be huge!
Fuck fear mongers, fuck terrorists for using violence against innocent people, and fuck them both for trying to make us afraid. Lets come together and show everyone that love and bicycles are stronger than bombs and fear.
Tags: baa, fear, foolish, marathon, MBTA, midnight marathon ride
Posted in news | 4 Comments »
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 Livable Streets:
Spring member party at District Hall.
A party is springing up and we want you there!
Join the LivableStreets community at Boston’s newest event space: District Hall. Meet and chat with members, staff and board members about the latest innovative thinking on transportation in Boston’s innovation district.
Already a member? Register for event now.
Want to become a member? Join/renew for only $35 for free event entry.
Bike4Life will be on Sunday, September 14, 2014
Bike4Life – a ride that benefits LivableStreets, will be on Sunday, September 14, from 8:30-2pm. 24 and 40 mile routes, 4 and 8 mile guided kid and family routes, and BBQ celebration!
Save the date and more details coming soon.
MassDOT’s new engineering directive
MassDOT has recently published a new Engineering Directive (E-14-001) to clarify and strengthen minimum pedestrian and bicycle accommodations required in roadway and bridge projects. The directive also encourages engineers to look beyond the minimums when designing for pedestrians and bicycles. MassDOT leadership reached out to LivableStreets, WalkBoston, and MassBike when preparing this new directive and incorporated extensive input.
Major changes in this directive include:
- requiring new 5-foot-minimum shoulders or bike lanes recommended for bicycle accommodation (compared to the prior 4-foot-minimum shoulder or 15-foot-wide outside lane)
- mandating sidewalks on all bridge and roadway projects in urbanized areas as required by the new Healthy Transportation Directive
For more information about the new Engineering Directive check out the Babystate Roads Program Blog. This directive is the result of the Design Standards Working Group, which LivableStreets sits on, and is just one way we advocate for safer and more livable streets for you.
MassDOT board votes to fund new buses
$355 million for new buses
Photo credit: Boston Business Journal
On February 19, the MassDOT board voted to include a total of $355M for bus replacement in its capital plan, $150M of which is new funding. More than 10% of the MBTA buses have reached the end of their useful life (12 years), and 85% of the MBTA bus fleet will reach their end in the next five years.
LivableStreets has been working on increasing statewide transportation funding with Transportation for Massachusetts. This is huge win for Transportation for Massachusetts and all those who live, work and play in the MBTA area.
Boston going carless
Call it pie in the sky, just plain crazy, or something to consider also?
Major cities across Europe from Brussels to Hamburg hope to go car-free.
Madrid, Spain is just one of the cities to swear off cars.
Brussels: ”The move would transform a handsome but car-snarled four-lane boulevard and a string of squares into a long, café-filled promenade. This new zone will join up with an existing pedestrian zone in the narrow streets around the city’s Grand Place and Rue Neuve, turning Brussels’ core into a spacious, rambling open-air living room.” Read more here>>
Madrid: “Trees, bikes, and walking are in. Cars, historical protection, and new apartments are out. This is the gist of a new plan Madrid has hatched to help it catch up with its European neighbors… The plan calls for 24 major Madrid streets to be radically overhauled, with car lanes removed, bike lanes added and trees planted to make them cool and shady.” Read more here >>
Hamburg: “Germany, home of the high-speed autobahn, is perhaps one of the few countries that has had as intense a love affair with the automobile as the U.S. But in an effort to go green, the country’s second-largest city is studying ways to eliminate cars by 2034. The northern city of Hamburg has laid out an initial concept, named the Green Network Plan, that would expand public transportation and add more routes for pedestrians and bicyclists.” Watch CNBC segment here >>
What do you think about Boston going carless?
Public meetings & other opportunities
Boston MPO calls for hosts of livable streets communities workshops
Help educate communities on how to incorporate livability concepts and promote thinking about how design influences livability.
Public Transit and Youth in the MBTA: Discussion and Briefing
Thursday, February 27, 4-6pm
@ SEIU 32BJ, 26 West Street, 3rd Fl, Boston
LivableStreets Volunteer Friday
Friday, February 28, 12-2pm
@ LivableStreets, 100 Sidney St, Cambridge
For full list of events on our calendar see here>>
Tags: livable streets, update
Posted in advocacy, news | No Comments »
Once upon a time I lived in Austin, then Boston, if any of you know of a city like Costin, Dustin, Eustin…I am kind of trying to go in order.
But enough of that, seems even in a city more or less designed for cars (as Austin is), biking is still faster. Mostly because cars are too damn big, and there are too many of them, and everyone wants to get into them all at the same time.
From the AustinPost:
It was a simple enough idea. Last Friday, five Austin Post reporters set off across the center of town around 5 p.m. to see how our city’s transportation options stack up: just a little more than four miles through rush hour hell.
We avoided the parking lot that was I-35 and the river of cars known as Mopac. No, we were in the mood for a multi-modal race, and we also wanted to test the powers of the new MetroRapid bus. We chose Guadalupe as our race route because it traverses the living, breathing (if not always moving) heart of the city and can be traversed any way you like, short of water travel. And so: 38th and Guadalupe to South Congress and Monroe.
Five travelers, five modes:
- MetroRapid Bus
- Regular Bus
- On Foot
We assumed our pedestrian would come in last. Austin traffic might be horrendous, but there’s no way a not-particularly-athletic person can walk 4.5 miles faster than a car can drive it, right?
Well, you know what they say about assumptions: don’t make any when it comes to how bad Austin traffic can be. We’ll let the results speak for themselves:
Yes, that graph is correct: the driver came in last place and took an hour and a half to get 4.5 miles through town. That’s half the time it takes to get to Dallas on a good day. The regular bus didn’t do much better, clocking in at just under 80 minutes.
Amazing, really. Even the pedestrian beat the car driver…
Best part is this timelapse of the car drivers experience,
(note how different this is than a car commercial)
Tags: austin, bikes rule!, cars drool
Posted in fun, news | 1 Comment »
From the email:
We are seeking applicants to join our team of Youth Cycling Instructors. Youth Cycling Instructors teach in-classroom and on-bike workshops to students in grades 2-12 in the Boston Public Schools. For more information, visit http://www.bostonbikes.o
Save the Date
6th Annual Boston Bike Update hosted by LivableStreets Alliance
Tags: Boston Bikes, update
Posted in advocacy, news | 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 »
Well they can’t really figure out what they think…
— Boston.com (@BostonDotCom) February 5, 2014
I would call it one less car clogging up the roads, one less person crammed into an overcrowded train. This person looks warm, dry, and reasonably prepared for just about anything. The trail behind him is in a nice straight line so he is not slipping all over, and it looks pretty peaceful and serine to me. Maybe if more folks got out of their metal boxes they would see that winter biking is not crazy, but really a very sensible option.
Tags: boston globe, twitter is dumb, winter bike
Posted in news | No Comments »