The Latest From BostonBiker.org

News, Events, Updates


Join The Bicycle Revolution!

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 07

A lot of times people ask me how they can get involved, below is an excellent way to plug into the process and start improving the streets you ride on every day.

From MassBike:

Your Role In The Bicycle Revolution

 

 

There are a lot of times here in the MassBike office that we get a familiar call. Our phone rings, and a concerned citizen starts telling the story of a terrible road, dangerous intersection, bad enforcement, or any number of other barriers that keep them from bicycling. And the question inevitably follows, “So, what should I do?”

 

What’s more, we know that for every one of these calls we get there are dozens of others who don’t call our office but are thinking the exact same thing. In response, we have put together our two-part Bikeable Communities Training, which gets to the heart of that critical question – “What should I do?” The first part of the training, “Plugging into the Process” goes over how local advocates can get involved. The second part, “Policies, Programs, and Projects,” provides an overview of the different ways that a community can encourage bicycling.

 

The classes are free and open to the public, though registration is required. You can register here. See below for the class schedule, and feel free to email [email protected] if you have any questions.

Part One, “Plugging Into The Process”

Tuesday, September 18, 6:00 – 8:30 PM
Boston Public Library Main Branch, McKim Conference Room
Boston

 

Wednesday, September 19, 6:30 – 9:00 PM
Collaborative for Educational Services
97 Hawley St, Northampton

 

Wednesday, October 3, 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Metropolitan Area Planning Council, 3rd Floor Conference Room
60 Temple Place, Boston

Part Two, “Policies, Programs and Projects”

Tuesday, September 25, 6:00 – 8:30 PM
MassBike Office
171 Milk Street, Suite 33
Boston, MA

 

Wednesday, October 24, 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Metropolitan Area Planning Council, 3rd Floor Conference Room
60 Temple Place, Boston

These trainings are made possible thanks to the generous support of the Boston Collaborative for Food and Fitness andMass in Motion.


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Federal Funding For Bicycles Under Attack (Again!)

Written by Boston Biker on Oct 31

Its so depressing that our elected leaders are so entirely clueless when it comes to priorities.

from MassBike:

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Just one month ago, the bicycling community stood together and defeated Senator Coburn’s (R-OK) effort to strip funding for Transportation Enhancements (a major source of funding for biking and walking projects) from the six-month extension that was passed at the last minute to prevent the shutdown of all federally-funded transportation programs.

Now, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is taking the lead in trying to destroy Transportation Enhancements. On November 1, the Senate will finalize the transportation appropriations bill, which sets funding levels for FY2012. Sen. Paul has offered an amendment to redirect all funding for Transportation Enhancements to bridge repair.

We must turn back any amendment to strip Transportation Enhancements. Here is how you can help:

1. Call and/or email Senator Kerry and Senator Brown to ask them to vote against the Paul amendment (SA-821) to eliminate Transportation Enhancements.

Senator John Kerry: (202) 224-2742, Email (select “Transportation” as Topic)
Senator Scott Brown: (202) 224-4543, Email (select “Transportation” as Topic)

Key Talking Points:

Attacks on Transportation Enhancements are a political stunt, not a solution to our transportation problems
Shifting every dollar of Transportation Enhancements to bridge repair would be ineffective – it would still take 80 years to repair all the bridges
And doing so would eliminate popular and effective programs right now that are saving thousands of bicyclist and pedestrian lives, combating obesity, protecting our environment, and creating economic opportunities
States returned $530 million in unspent bridge repair funds back to Washington last year – that money should be used before cutting other programs
Funding for biking and walking should be part of the overall debate of long-term transportation funding starting November 9

Don’t have time to write your own email? Click here to send a pre-written email message to both Senators.
2. Email [email protected] and let us know you contacted them!

Every single call or email matters, so please act today! Read below for even more detail.

We agree on the need to keep our bridges safe, but the lives of pedestrians and cyclists are important too. Thirteen people died when the Minneapolis bridge collapsed in 2007. Since then, close to 20,000 pedestrians and 2,800 cyclists have died on our nation’s highways, largely as a result of poor highway design and a lack of safe non-motorized infrastructure – exactly what the Enhancements program was created to fix.

If Sen. Paul’s amendment is successful, it would eliminate approximately $700 million in federal funding for FY2012 that is used to construct sidewalks, bike lanes, bike paths, trails and other infrastructure that makes it safe for bicyclists and pedestrians to get around. Even if every penny of these funds is diverted to bridge repairs, Senator Paul’s plan will still take 80 years to fix the backlog of bridge repairs we have today.

Even though TE represents less than 2% of federal transportation funding, it has built about $100 million in projects in Massachusetts since 1992, and the Safe Routes to School program has provided millions more to help thousands of MA children bike or walk to school. These programs help alleviate traffic congestion, improve safety, get people active, and and create more jobs per dollar than highway-only projects. We cannot allow Transportation Enhancements to fall victim to partisan political grandstanding. If we cannot save Transportation Enhancements, then Safe Routes to School, the Recreational Trails Program, and other vital sources of funding for biking and walking will not be far behind.

Last year, states sent back to Washington $530 million of unspent bridge funds in rescissions. The states are leaving bridge repair funds on the table, unspent, year after year. They should at least spend these funds first.

If the Paul amendment succeeds, it will make it much more challenging to sustain funding for Transportation Enhancements, Safe Routes to School, and Recreational Trails in the long-term transportation bill that the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee starts debating on November 9.


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MassBike Needs Your Help To Build An Advocacy Toolkit

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 19

From MassBike:

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MassBike has partnered with the Boston Public Health Commission and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) program to create an advocacy toolkit. The aim of this toolkit is to enhance the abilities of Commonwealth residents to advocate for better bicycling infrastructure and programs in their own communities.

Do you have any questions/advice/stories about advocacy successes, advocacy failures, infrastructure concerns, good and bad interactions with state and local officials in the Bay State? If so, please pass them along! I want to make sure the content of this toolkit will reflect what YOU need to know and coincides with the experiences that YOU have already had. If you do not want to post your experiences and comments to the public, please send them along to me at [email protected] (MassBike will respect your privacy to the utmost.)

This last weekend I conversed with a few riders on the Mass BikePike Tour (which was great!) about advocacy, infrastructure, and this toolkit. This made me realize that I have been working on this project over the course of the summer without asking for the input of Massachusetts’ most knowledgeable residents: MassBike members!

Thank you, with your help this Toolkit will be a guiding document in MassBike’s effort to see better bicycling in Massachusetts.


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JP Bikes Meeting Recap

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 10

Got this in the mail today, if you are interested in getting involved with JP bikes hit up their google group [email protected]

A brief summary of the Dec 9 JP Bikes organizing meeting (This is not the complete minutes of the meeting)

This is to both review what we did and to help others get involved.

We are building toward a larger community meeting tentatively set for Tuesday Feb 3 at the Agassiz School.

Jeff, Jen and Matt presented 5 Action Points to assign to committees. Each action committee will meet at least once prior to the Feb 3 meeting to create its own agenda and priorities. My descriptions here are not complete, but are summaries and examples.

1 Communication and Administration, chaired by Jen Paulousky. This group will work on both internal and external communication, both in print and electronic. Other members are Joe Slag, Arienne Nick, and Greg Howard.

2. Rides & Events, chaired by Matt DeMarrais. The first project this group will be taking on will be some kind of spring community ride e.g. JP Bikes Centre/South St. celebrating no trolley tracks. Other members are Jeff Ferris, Arienne Nick, Sherry Eskin, and Bob Dizon.

3. Advocacy Committee, chaired by Jeff Ferris. This group initially is primarily focused on Southwest Corridor and Emerald Necklace paths issues.
An immediate project will be to work with Peter Furth’s Northeastern students on a set of recommendations for signage and other safety issues at the SWC path intersections. Other members are Doug Mink, Sarah Freeman, and Teresa Roberts. This committee would welcome folks from around the city (such as from RosiBikes and DotBikes) who are interested.

4. CityWide Issues, co-chaired by Anne McKinnon and Doug Mink. To deal with whatever the Mayor’s bike program is, and to work with the upcoming city bike advisory committee being formed by Nicole Freedman. Also to work and communicate with the other neighborhood bike groups. Also includes Matt DeMarrais

5. Education Committee, chaired by Bob Dizon. This group has the most wide-open agenda to create: anything from training workshops to printed material and maps. Other members are Jeff Ferris, Anne McKinnon, David Webster, and Jen Paulousky.

Of note, but not assigned to a committee: Eric Scheier of the MBTA tells me that they want to put a bike storage cage at Forest Hills Station. I presume this would be similar to but smaller than one recently installed at Alewife Station. Eric will be looking for some community input, but no details yet.

So, if you weren’t there last night, please communicate and sign on to a committee!
I think we all agreed that JP is a great place to bike. There is a lot of excitement and enthusiasm for making Boston a better place to bike, and to help more people share our joy of riding bikes in Boston.


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Community Meeting On Harvard Allston Master Plan Transportation Options

Written by Boston Biker on Dec 08

There will be a Community Wide Plan meeting Wednesday, December 10, at the Honan-Allston Branch Library (300 North Harvard Street) from 6:30-8:30 p.m. The meeting will focus on a BRA/Consultant team presentation of multi-modal transportation options.

This plan will set the long-term transportation vision for Harvard’s expanding area in Allston, including Western Ave. and North Harvard Street as well as local street and path connections. Different options for bicycle accommodations and networks are being discussed. I strongly encourage anyone with an interest in this area to attend.


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Posted in advocacy | 3 Comments »

The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Mass and Beacon: looking at the larger picture. November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDF path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Harvard Bridge connection to the PDW path: proposed improvement November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. There are two special bicycle routes … Continue reading →
      jsallen
    • Mass and Beacon: looking at the larger picture. November 18, 2017
      TweetLet’s look at how well bicycle routes around the Boston end of the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue bridge over the Charles River) might be improved.. Here is a Google maps overview of the area. You may click on it to … Continue reading →
      jsallen