Wednesday, February 4, 2009

League of American Bicyclists Update

I'm a member of the League of American Bicyclists, and I'm continually amazed at the number of cyclists who haven't heard of this organization. If you're interested in improving things for cycling in the US, please consider joining.

Here's their latest newsletter. Enjoy!

February 2, 2009


Greetings!

Even though the National Bike Summit isn't the focus of this e-news, just a quick reminder that we're rapidly approaching the early bird registration date and room blocks at the Summit hotels are filling up. So register and make your travel plans ASAP. If you would like a Summit Web banner or a print advertisement for promotional use, email Meghan at meghan@bikeleague.org.

Meanwhile, the economic stimulus package waits for nobody; watch this space for action later this week!

Sincerely,

Andy Clarke,
President


National News

Update on Economic Stimulus package
Earlier this week, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The League and other members of the America Bikes Coalition have been working to ensure that economic recovery funds help communities create safe, healthy and less-polluting transportation options for all Americans by providing explicit funding for bicycle, pedestrian and trail investments. Click here for full details.

NCUTCD Winter Meeting Summary
The National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices
(NCUTCD) held their winter meeting in Arlington, VA on January 7-9, 2009. As part of the larger meeting, the Bicycle Technical Committee (BTC) of NCUTCD also met and discussed traffic control issues affecting bicyclists.

Some items of interest from the meeting:
* The draft of the next edition of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) was issued for public comment in January 2008. FHWA received over 15,000 comments, with little opposition over the proposed items for bicyclists - new shared lane markings, improved guide signing and added signing for narrow lanes. FHWA will have a decision by late 2009 or early 2010 resulting in either a new edition of the MUTCD or a revised draft for public input.

* Several traffic control device experiments are underway. The City of Portland, OR is testing colored "bike boxes". Additionally the BTC hopes to get a good experiment on colored and enhanced bike lane markings from San Francisco. The BTC will be doing outreach to public agencies, practitioner, and advocates on NCUTCD's role in reviewing and assisting traffic control device approval.

* The American Association of State Highway & Transportaion Officials AASHTO is developing a new edition of their Guide for Bicycle Facilities. The BTC is ensuring consistency between the new MUTCD and new AASHTO Guide. This next edition of the Bike Guide is expected in late 2009.

*AASHTO also recently approved a corridor and designation plan for a nationwide network of US Bicycle Routes. This has brought interest in route signage, and the BTC is looking into sign layouts.

The next NCUTCD meeting is scheduled for June 18-20, 2009 in Manchester, New Hampshire.
State & Local News
Calling Kentucky Bicyclists!
Bicycling for Louisville reports that a vulnerable road user law has been introduced in the legislature and needs your support! House Bill 88 ("One Road" cyclist safety bill) would create a new offence of "vehicular assault of a bicyclist or pedestrian" and has a number of other important provisions clarifying the legal status of cyclists on the road in Kentucky. The legislative session is short, so keep checking the Bicycling for Louisville site for updates and calls for action. Right now, you should write members of the Judiciary Committee.

New Delaware Governor Major Bike Advocate
Jack A. Markell, democrat, was inaugurated as Delaware governor on January 31, 2009 and he has major plans to improve the bicycle and pedestrian friendliness of his state. Markell's announced during his campaign his goal of making Delaware the friendliest state in the country for cyclists and pedestrians. Markell is proposing refurbishing existing paths and giving builders incentives to include paths and other features for pedestrians and cyclists in new developments. Click here to learn more.

San Fran Mayor Announces Bike Share Program
San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newson announced this January 28, 2009 to implement a bike sharing pilot program this year. He plans on expounding upon their gold-level Bicycle Friendly Community status. "Bike sharing will help connect thousands of residents and commuters to their workplaces and shopping destinations by providing bikes that they can easily borrow," said Mayor Newsom. "This bike sharing pilot project will allow us to test and perfect the bikes and technology that will be used in our citywide network." The pilot program will include 50 bikes located at five stations on non-city property. Bike sharing customers will sign-up through an online registration system. Click here to learn more.
League News

REI Renews Funding for BFC Grants
For the second year, REI has pledged $100,000 for the REI/Bicycle Friendly Communities (BFC) Grant Program. The program, administered by the Bikes Belong Foundation, supports designated and aspiring Bicycle Friendly Communities that are demonstrating success, employing creative strategies and showing marked advancements in becoming more bicycle-friendly. One of the goals of the REI/BFC Grant Program is to build on the significant momentum generated by the BFC application process. The 2009 REI/BFC Grant recipients will also receive technical assistance from the League to help them prioritize and reach their bike-friendly goals.

2008 Clubs of the Year
Congratulations to the 2008 Clubs of the Year, as determined by the staff and board of the League. If you think your club deserves to be on this list next year, contact your regional board member in the fall and let them know: we'll let you know when!

Click here to find out who the winners are!
Employment
League Job Opportunities
The League has four new positions available. If you are have a strong interest in bicycle and pedestrian advocacy, click here to learn more about these exciting job openings.
San Francisco Great Streets Campaign Director
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition (SFBC) is seeking a highly motivated and talented individual to serve in a new position of Director of the San Francisco Great Streets Campaign (GSC). This is an exciting, new collaboration being launched by the SFBC and partner organizations to promote safer, more livable streets and public places. Click here to learn more.
Other News
Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin Hires New Executive Director
The Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin (BFW) announced January 21, 2009 the appointment of its new Executive Director, Mr. Kevin Hardman, following an extensive and thorough executive search.

"As a statewide nonprofit serving the needs of Wisconsin's diverse and vibrant bicycle community, the BFW required a combination of vision, management expertise and a proven consensus building in its leader," said Chick Veenstra, the Chair of the Board of Directors. "Kevin has just this mix of talent. His depth of community-building experience, his successes as a businessperson and his love of cycling will be a tremendous asset in our continued effort to make Wisconsin the nation's best place to be on a bike."

Click here to read more.
The League Mission: To promote bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation and work through advocacy and education for a bicycle-friendly America.


People, not speed.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

10TV: Van Strikes, Kills Tricyclist

A cyclist was hit and killed on Karl Road Sunday when a van hit him. Dave Hines, 70, was riding an adult tricycle that he used to get around as his primary transportation. I've ridden on Karl Road, once. It's not a road I'd take too often, as there are lots of people using it to travel between Morse Road and Dublin-Granville Road.

It's a sad story, and doubly sad that the man riding had no car himself, and used the tricycle as his primary transportation. His friend quoted in the story apparently told him not to ride on the road, which is disturbing. Obviously, we all know that he belongs in the road, not on the sidewalks. And you'd think that a tricycle would be even MORE visible than a bike given its larger size.

More news to come on this accident.

People, not speed.