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News, Events, Updates


MassBike Weighs In On I-90 Intersection In Allston

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 27

From MassBike:

The deadline for comment on the Interstate 90 Interchange project in Allston was this past week. Below is the letter filed by MassBike Executive Director Richard Fries.

To Whom it May Concern,

I deeply appreciate the effort made to present a number of options and schemes to re-build the Interstate 90 interchange in Allston. The public hearings have likewise been informative and illuminating, for all parties involved.

While I applaud the addition of some bicycle and pedestrian accommodation I came away rather crestfallen. After discussion with several other advocates I had to check if indeed my reaction was on target.

The collective disappointment resonated with all concerned advocates.

The narrow corridor of the project affords several different options. I respect the constraints and the efforts to integrate a variety of modes there. I’ll defer to my colleagues at the Boston Cyclists Union, Boston Bikes, Livable Streets Alliance, WalkBoston and other neighborhood groups for their expertise there.

But the plans shown for the 100-plus acre wedge of land is what left me disappointed. This 20th Century paradigm of design is revelatory. The plan seems focused on throughput for automobiles first with bikes, pedestrians and transit wrapped around that as a distant second.

We have a chance here to go to the vanguard of 21st Century thought and put the active transportation plan into place first.

Of note is that less than 29 percent of 18-year-olds even have drivers’ licenses. We know that 17 percent of college students – those all-important job creators – in Massachusetts use bikes as their first choice of transportation and transit second. Within MetroBoston the number approaches 30 percent.

So here we are in Suffolk County, which alone has 26 colleges and universities, with a parcel of land between Harvard, Northeastern, Boston College and Boston University. All of these schools discourage students from bringing automobiles to campus.

And what do we do? We design something for Mr. Drysdale and his Cadillac in classic 1960s design.

At issue here is NOT whether we can get a share of the road; we have a blank canvas. At issue here is whether we can get a share of the engineer’s mind. A generation grew up watching Fred Flintstone stuck in traffic in the past and George Jetson stuck in traffic in the future. Can we not shatter this failed paradigm?

I reflect on this while we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the movie Back to the Future. Just 30 years ago we thought the future would be about moving through places faster.

But we missed it.

The future, with technology, social networking and mobile phones, turned out to be about slowing down and improving where we are at with each other.  Instead of rocketing AWAY from each other, we worked on improving the urban space we share WITH each other.

So let’s not make that mistake with this design. Change the paradigm.

What will our verse be when they revisit this design in 50 years?

Thank you,

Richard Fries


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Temporary Closure Of The Paul Dudley White Bike Path

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 21

Got this in the email, if this is part of your commute you might need to change some things up:

 

DCR Recreational Advisory: Temporary Closure of the Paul Dudley White Bike Path in Boston

WHAT:           Beginning on Monday, December 21, 2015 and continuing to Friday, January 22, 2016, the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) will be implementing a temporary closure of Paul Dudley White Bike Path along the Boston side of the Charles River between the Boston University Bridge and the River Street Bridge, to accommodate repairs to the pedestrian bridge.

 

WHERE:         Paul Dudley White Bike Path, Boston, between the Boston University Bridge and the River Street Bridge

 

WHEN:           Monday, December 21, 2015 and continuing to Friday, January 22, 2016


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The Longfellow Bridge Sucks For Cyclists, Let MassDOT Know We Are Pissed

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 20

The longfellow bridge has gone from pretty awesome (one lane of traffic and two lanes of bikes), to bad (wrong side bike path on the pedestrian walkway), to atrocious (one very narrow bike lane, and a bike/pedestrian traffic heading north).

Personally I see a lot more people going over the bridge on foot and on bicycle than I do in cars, shut the car traffic down and reserve the road for emergency and bike traffic, at least until the end of construction.

 

From The BCU:

The current conditions on the Longfellow Bridge are unsafe and unacceptable for people on bikes.  As you may know, the outbound bike lane was removed and cyclists are being asked to walk their bike on the sidewalk heading into Cambridge.  The inbound lane was narrowed so that large vehicles cannot safely pass cyclists in the bike lane.  Please see our letter to MassDOT, below, and send in your own!  Tell your story of traveling on the Longfellow and tell MassDOT and your elected representatives that this is an untenable situation, and cyclist accommodations must be addressed!

___________________________________

Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack

Department of Transportation
10 Park Plaza, Suite 4160
Boston, MA 02116

CC: Representative Jay Livingstone
CC: Chris Osgood, Chief of Street, City of Boston

RE: Longfellow Bridge Modified Phase 2 Construction

Dear Secretary,

On behalf of our members, the Boston Cyclists Union, the Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition and LivableStreets Alliance would like to bring to your attention the increasingly hazardous conditions for people riding bicycles over the Longfellow Bridge, and we request that these hazards be addressed immediately.

Recently, due to the need to construct a temporary track for the Red Line, the inbound travel lane and bike lane have both been narrowed, and outbound cyclists no longer have a street­level contraflow bike lane and instead are being required to walk their bicycles on the sidewalk.

The current accommodations for the hundreds of people on bicycles* crossing the bridge daily are unacceptable to us and our members. The bike and travel lane widths heading inbound into Boston do not adequately provide a safe way for motorized vehicles to overtake people riding bicycles in the bike lane. Trolley buses, trucks and other large vehicles regularly travel in the bike lane, putting people riding bicycles at extreme risk of being side­swiped or struck from behind. Construction activities also routinely negatively impact the roadway condition with gravel and debris, and cones and markers are often moved into the path designated as the bike lane. (Please see the image attached below of current conditions heading inbound. Notice the bike lane is blocked by jersey barriers, forcing people riding bicycles into the travel lane.) Moreover, instructing outbound cyclists to walk their bikes on the sidewalk does not fulfill MassDOT’s promise to provide two ­way bike travel for the duration of the project.

From what we understand, this situation is temporary and two­way bicycle travel will switch to the upstream side of the bridge sometime early next year, but that does not make the current situation permissible to the hundreds of people biking over the Longfellow everyday. Moreover, we are concerned that the project will not follow the anticipated project schedule, and the current situation will persist throughout the winter. If that is the case, snow accumulation in the inbound bike lane will force people riding bikes into the travel lane with vehicular traffic, making an already dangerous situation even worse. We have provided a video, attached, demonstrating the approach of a trolley bus to a cyclist in the bike lane. Please note the bus’s right wheels overlapping with the bike lane, and the closeness during the pass.

We look forward to hearing how MassDOT plans to address these hazards.

Sincerely,

Rebecca Wolfson, Interim Executive Director, Boston Cyclists Union Richard Fries, Executive Director, MassBike
Charlie Denison, Advocacy Committee Chair, LivableStreets Alliance

* On Tuesday, Dec. 8 the Boston Cyclists Union conducted a count of users on the Longfellow Bridge and observed 333 people riding bicycles and 713 motorized vehicles going inbound between 7:35 AM and 9:15 AM. The fact that people riding bicycles represent approximately 32% of the rush­hour inbound vehicle traffic on the Longfellow Bridge demonstrate how important of a connection the bridge is for people riding bicycles between Cambridge and Boston.

__________________________________

Watch this VIDEO demonstrating unsafe riding conditions!

(See the full letter here: Longfellow Phase 2 Comments-2)

Please write to MassDOT at [email protected] and CC [email protected][email protected] and [email protected] so we can see that you’ve taken action and can help amplify your voice!

 


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Holiday Update Mega Thread!

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 20

From the city:

 

Happy New Year from Boston Bikes!

2015 was a year full of changes for us, and you were all there to help. Thank you to everyone who makes Boston a better city for people who bike. Whether you attended a Bike Friday, participated in our Women’s Bike Ride & Festival, donated or received a bike through Roll it Forward, gave comments at a public meeting, or simply connected with us over e-mail, we’re thankful for all of your support. We wish you a happy holiday season, and we look forward to working with you in the new year!

Mayor Walsh Announces Boston’s Vision Zero Action Plan

Last week, Mayor Walsh announced the release of Boston’s Vision Zero Action Plan, our citywide plan to eliminate fatal and serious traffic crashes by 2030. This announcement marks a major milestone on our path to safer streets.

Visit visionzeroboston.org to read the action plan. Join the mailing list for updates about Vision Zero and specific planning initiatives.

Submit Your Boston Bikes Advisory Group Application Today

There’s still time to apply for the Boston Bikes Advisory Group (BBAG). As a member of the BBAG, you will have the opportunity to advise the Active Transportation Director on priorities related to cycling in Boston including the implementation of the network plan, safety and education campaigns, and community events.

Read the BBAG Overview and view the application on our website. Applications are dueTuesday December 22, 2015. Applicants will be notified in the middle of January 2016, and the first meeting will take place in February. Memberships last two calendar years.

Hubway Station Closures Update

Many of Boston’s Hubway stations are scheduled to stay open until 12/31, after which they’ll be brought in for the winter. You can view the complete closure schedule on Hubway’s website. Want to be notified before your station is removed? Sign up for system alerts. You can also check the Hubway map or the Spotcycle app for real time updates.

New Community Spaces for Bike Repair

Three community workspaces are (or soon will be) helping meet the growing need for bike-repair education. Be sure to visit one of these locations, or your local bike shop to get your bike is ready to roll through winter.

Sip & Spoke Bike Kitchen
The Sip & Spoke Bike Kitchen will be co-located with the Bowdoin Bike School in the historic Upham’s Corner Comfort Station. It will serve as a communal space for people looking to grab a coffee, a bite to eat, or some new bike parts. Learn more about the Sip & Spoke Bike Kitchen at sipandspoke.com.

BCU Community Workspace
The Boston Cyclists Union provides free and low-cost bike repairs to Bostonians at summertime farmer’s markets. Now they’re working to provide these services year-round from their community bike-repair space at 375 Dudley St in Roxbury. Learn more about this initiative atbostoncyclistsunion.org.

Pop Allston
Pop Allston offers a diverse set of programs for community members. Stop by 89 Brighton Avenue on Wednesdays from 3-7pm for CommonWheels’ Open Shops, or on the first Sunday of the month from 1pm-3pm for Grrrease Time with Femmechanics. Visit the Pop Allston website to learn more about their programs.

From Bikes Not Bombs:

 

Thank you for making 2015 amazing!

It was great to see new and old volunteers, Bike-A-Thon riders, youth participants, shop customers, donors and everyone connected to Bikes Not Bombs at our Year End Celebration yesterday. We are so grateful to our community.

You are what makes Bikes Not Bombs possible.

Youth employees and alums at the party.

Through your support in 2015 we have launched an Adult Earn-A-Bike Program, partnered with Cycloville, and started a Know Your Rights training. It has been an amazing year for BNB!

Check out more photos from the End of Year Celebration, and thank you to both Doyle’s, Canto 6and Monumental Cupcakes for generously supporting the celebration.

Filming for Shifting Power, Bike Mechanics Training Videos
See what we’ve been working on!

All year we have been hard at work on Shifting Power, Bike Mechanics Training Videos. This video series, available in English and Spanish, will serve as a comprehensive training manual for youth worldwise to learn, and teach, about bicycle mechanics.

We are still finishing up a few videos but you canview the videos on our website. Look for a formal release in January!


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Bikes Not Bombs Is Having A Holiday Party!

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 10

Come celebrate with us!
You’re Invited, Let’s Celebrate!

Join us at our end of year party to celebrate an amazing 2015!

We’ll be unveiling our new series of bike mechanics training videos and celebrating the contributions of staff members David Branigan and Derek McIntire as they transition out of their roles at BNB, and Stephen Bosco who has stepped back to a lead volunteer role. All ages welcome, we’ll provide light appetizers, cake served at 7:30pm, cash bar available.

Other Upcoming Events:

Shop Clinics, Hours and Updates:
Thurs 12/10 8-9pm Winter Commuting Clinic
Mon 12/14 7-9pm Femmechanics

The shop will be closing at 6:30pm on 12/9 and at 6pm on 12/16. We will also be closed 12/24 to 1/3, reopening for normal hours on Monday January 4th. Please check the website as these dates are subject to change.

This year, consider Bikes Not Bombs when purchasing your holiday gifts! We have many BNB branded T-shirts, hoodies, water bottles and cycling caps, and we’re selling limited sizes (XS, S and M) BNB Cycling Jerseys for only $25!

For the young cyclist we have both refurbished (most priced around $100-$150) and new Raleigh (starting at $190) kids’ bikes.

BNB-Specific Discount from Fortified Bikes! Our friends at Fortified Bicycle (the makers of guaranteed anti-theft bike lights) are hooking you up with a one-week 30% discount on all of their gear. Better yet, they’re donating 20% of all proceeds back to BNB! To activate your discount, just shop online at Fortifiedbike.com and use the code BNBLOVE at checkout. Act fast, this offer ends 12/16!

Help BNB Load a Container! Please join us to load bikes to Cycloville! Sunday, December 13th, 9am-6pm.

Volunteer Night: There will be no Volunteer Night on Thursday December 24th and December 31st.


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Boston Rolls Out Its “Vision Zero” Plan

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 10

This is fantastic news, and it totally where we need to be going, these are not accidents, they are crashes, and its time we fix the problems leading to needless death and suffering.

From the cities new Vision Zero website:

I am proud to be the Mayor of America’s Walking City.

Dear Bostonians,

I am proud to be the Mayor of America’s Walking City. I know that with that title comes the responsibility to ensure that the hundreds of thousands of Bostonians and visitors who use our streets every day have a safe and enjoyable experience. Unfortunately, an average of two pedestrians are hit by cars every day – people like you and me who are simply trying to get across the street. Almost as many people riding bikes are treated by our EMS and every year thousands of drivers are injured, put in danger, or delayed by collisions with other vehicles.

While only a handful of these crashes are fatal, every tragedy leaves a trail of grieving family and friends, and the despair of unfulfilled potential. As Mayor, I see the real people behind these statistics; I share the grief, pain, and sense of loss that every crash report represents.

I grew up in Dorchester. We could walk to the store, to church, to a friend’s house, or to a park. We could ride our bikes to school or to Boston Harbor. We could get on a subway train or a bus and go to work almost anywhere in Greater Boston. That freedom of movement is what made it a strong community – tightly knit and human scaled, but also fully connected to the wider world of jobs, amenities, and culture.

Children growing up today deserve that same level of freedom and mobility. Our seniors should be able to safely get around the communities they helped build and have access to the world around them. Driving, walking, or riding a bike on Boston’s streets should not be a test of courage.

We know how to build safer streets. We know how to protect our most vulnerable road users, who are suffering disproportionately because of speeding traffic and distracted drivers.

With this Action Plan, I am saying it’s time to act. It’s time to commit to eliminating fatal and serious traffic crashes from our daily experience.

IT’S TIME FOR VISION ZERO.

Sincerely,

Martin J. Walsh

 

You can find more info here at the Massachusetts Vision Zero Plan


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Jingle Ride 2015!

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 09

From the email, this looks pretty fun!unnamed

——-

On Sunday, December 13th, join the 19th Annual Ciclismo Classico Jingle Ride.  This leisurely and festive singing bike parade goes from Arlington to Boston and back.  The 22-mile bicycle ride rolls through Harvard Square, the Esplanade, Boston Common, and Newbury Street – we stop and sing carols at local landmarks, and just parade along showing some creative holiday spirit.

There will be free hot mulled cider and freshly-brewed coffee and pastries thanks to our starting-point hosts at the Kickstand Café.  We’ll also enjoy hot cocoa and cookies at Harvard Square, courtesy of the Harvard Square Business Association!

It’s a parade, not a race – so if you have a bicycle, we’d love your holiday spirit along for the ride!

Join the Jingle Ride!
Date: Sunday December 13th, 2015 (ride will be cancelled if there is extreme weather)
Time: registration opens at 10:15 AM, ride leaves promptly at 11 AM
Distance: 22-mile leisurely loop from Arlington to Boston and back
Starting point: Kickstand Café, 594 Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington Center, MA
Cost: Suggested donation of $25 (children under 18 are free if accompanied by an adult).  All proceeds go to Horizons for Homeless Children.
RSVP is required. Please RSVP at http://jingleride2015.eventbrite.com or contact Francesca at 781-646-3377.


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Some Hubway Stations Are Staying Open All Winter!

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 03

from Hubway:

This time of year brings out the best in Hubway riders. Case in point: last week’s#TakeHubway #GiveThanks #GetPie events saw riders bring in over 300 canned food items for donations. Here’s a pic of just some of the items along with members of our staff volunteering their time to collect and deliver the cans.

The generosity of our members made us even more excited to make this announcement: more Hubway stations will be open this winter than any other winter before! For the third year, almost all Cambridge stations will remain open year-round. Plus, more than 70 of Boston’s off-street stations and 2 in Somerville will stay open through December 31st, weather permitting! Click here to view the list of all stations open this winter.

With colder days expected, there are a few things to keep in mind while riding (or getting ready to ride). Check out Hubway’s winter-riding tips here.

With member perks, opportunities to add your voice to shaping the future of cycling in the metro-Boston area (see below), and an expanded Hubway season, there’s plenty of bike-related goodness for which to stay thankful (even after Thanksgiving).

Enjoy your wintry rides,
The Hubway Team

Boston Bikes is part of Boston’s vision for a vibrant and healthy city that benefits all, with the goal to make Boston a world-class bicycling city by creating safe and inviting conditions for residents and visitors.

The Boston Bikes Advisory Group (BBAG) consists of individuals who live, work, and/or bike in Boston. Members serve as liaisons to the greater biking community and advise the Active Transportation Director on priorities related to cycling in Boston including: the implementation of the network plan, safety and education campaigns, and community events. While the BBAG does not have authoritative power, members provide input that helps to shape the future of cycling in Boston.

During monthly meetings members have the opportunity to give input on the work of Boston Bikes and interface with others in the community who work on issues related to cycling in Boston. Outside of meetings, members are asked to support the work of Boston Bikes through various volunteer opportunities.

 

Winner of eight 2012 Tony Awards including BEST MUSICAL, ONCE is a truly original experience. Featuring an impressive ensemble of actor/musicians who play their own instruments onstage, ONCE tells the enchanting tale of a Dublin street musician who’s about to give up on his dream when a beautiful young woman takes a sudden interest in his haunting love songs.
“Once” is an unforgettable story about going for your dreams and the power of music to connect us all. Connect with “Once” with this special ticket offer for Hubway members only!
Hubway members receive 30% off tickets to select performances. Visithttp://www.citicenter.org/once for tickets, and use code DREAM for available tickets for these performances while supplies last. Click here for details on available dates & performance times.

WANT TO WORK FOR HUBWAY?

Hubway is growing and looking to hire a full-time Bike Mechanic.

 

Need holiday gifts? Bicycle Benefits is here to help! Get 10% off your entire purchase when you ride to Magpie at 416 Highland Ave in Somerville (the Davis Sq Hubway station will be open through December).
Show your Bike Benefits helmet sticker to get discounts on groceries, free coffees, ice cream, bananas, & deals all over town. Show your sticker when you visit businesses that are part of the program to get your deal. New businesses are joining every week.Visit the Bicycle Benefits website to see where. #bicyclebenefits

 

Harvard Allston Task Force Meeting, Thu, 12/3, 6-8pm, Harvard Innovation Lab, 125 Western Ave, Allston.
Show up, speak up!
Join this meeting of the task force to discuss Harvard’s planning & development in Allston, including ongoing implementation of community benefits and bike infrastructure & safety (if you’re there to bring it up). You can help shape the community and the City for decades to come. Get all the details here.

Brookline Bicycle Advisory Committee Meeting
Mon, 12/7, 7-9pm, Brookline Town Hall, Room 408.

The Brookline Bicycle Advisory Committee is appointed by and advises the Brookline Transportation Board with a mission to encourage, plan for, advocate for, and advise about bicycling, and a goal to make the Town of Brookline a safe and accessible place to live and work for all citizens. Meetings are usually held monthly and are open to the public. Details available here.

 

 

Mass Pike Allston Reconstruction Meeting, Tue, 12/8, 6:30pm, Jackson Mann School, 40 Armington St, Allston. Over the next decade, the State will completely reform the I-90 turnpike, north and south Allston, Harvard, the connections to Soldier’s Field Road, and how you get to/from and across the Charles River. Be a part of supporting better public transportation, walking, biking, and mobility & livability in/through Allston and along the River. Find more information here.

 

 

Boston Bike Party, Fri, 12/11 (and the 2nd Friday of everymonth), 7pm, Copley Square. It’s Boston’s free monthly celebration on wheels! Just for fun! Party attitude required; lights, bells, and costumes encouraged! You’ve got a bike (or not, but then friends and Hubways are here for you) and a funky spirit? Come ride with us! Boston Bike Party is a monthly social group ride. We are friendly, open to any bicycle fantasy (show us what you’ve got) and ready to party. Click here to bike party.

Somerville Bicycle Advisory Committee Meeting, Tue, 12/15, 6:30pm, Somerville City Hall, basement Employee Lounge, 93 Highland Avenue.
ALL ARE WELCOME!
Meetings are open to the public, and membership is open to all residents with an interest in helping make Somerville a world-class city for bicycling.
Learn more about the Committee here.

Have an event we should be mentioning in our newsletter?
Tweet it to us @Hubway with hashtag #WhereToRide.

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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Corn Cog Badge Installed February 5, 2016
      Got these lovely pictures from a client I made a “corn” cog badge for.  I really like the way this looks, and am glad that it fits so well on the new bike. Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Hey Look The Metro Misquoted Me! January 28, 2016
      TweetDon’t you love it when someone manages to read all the way down a several hundred word article you have written and then for some reason chooses to miss the entire point of the article, while at the same time cherry picking … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Hey Look The Metro Misquoted Me! January 28, 2016
      TweetDon’t you love it when someone manages to read all the way down a several hundred word article you have written and then for some reason chooses to miss the entire point of the article, while at the same time cherry picking … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Open letter to the city January 27, 2016
      Tweethello, I live a few streets away from Seaver Street in Roxbury, and was at the community meeting last year at the church regarding the bike lanes on Seaver. One loudmouthed community member (who is not a cyclist) shouted everyone … Continue reading →
      crankycoffey
    • RoadAir Mini-Pump Review January 26, 2016
      TweetSometimes people are nice enough to send me products to review.  So just know I got this for free, and that might bias me in ways I can’t consciously know about. I was sent this pump a while ago, and … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Cambridge Participatory Budget Bike Projects! January 26, 2016
      TweetThree bike projects won! (for those of you who don’t know what the Cambridge Participatory Budget is check this out) http://pb.cambridgema.gov/sepbikelanes 9. Separate Bike Lanes from Traffic Committee: Streets, Sidewalks & Transit Cost: $50,000 Location: Citywide Short Description: Improve safety … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Cambridge Participatory Budget Bike Projects! January 26, 2016
      TweetThree bike projects won! (for those of you who don’t know what the Cambridge Participatory Budget is check this out) http://pb.cambridgema.gov/sepbikelanes 9. Separate Bike Lanes from Traffic Committee: Streets, Sidewalks & Transit Cost: $50,000 Location: Citywide Short Description: Improve safety … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Cambridge Participatory Budget Bike Projects! January 26, 2016
      TweetThree bike projects won! (for those of you who don’t know what the Cambridge Participatory Budget is check this out) http://pb.cambridgema.gov/sepbikelanes 9. Separate Bike Lanes from Traffic Committee: Streets, Sidewalks & Transit Cost: $50,000 Location: Citywide Short Description: Improve safety … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • MassBike Moves It’s Offices January 26, 2016
      TweetMassbike is getting some snazzy new digs! From the email. ———– We’re Moving! Don’t worry – we’re not going far! On March 1 MassBike is heading down the block to 50 Milk Street and moving in to the Cambridge Innovation … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • MassBike Moves It’s Offices January 26, 2016
      TweetMassbike is getting some snazzy new digs! From the email. ———– We’re Moving! Don’t worry – we’re not going far! On March 1 MassBike is heading down the block to 50 Milk Street and moving in to the Cambridge Innovation … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker