Sunday, January 30, 2011

Bike Commuting News for January 30

Construction is scheduled to begin tomorrow on a large downtown Long Beach project to add bicycle lanes along both Broadway and 3rd Street (map below), as Long Beach continues its effort to become more bike-friendly. Construction is expected to finish in mid-March.

The project aims to make bicyclists more comfortable, citing studies that show people are more likely to ride bikes if they do not have to mix with automobile traffic. The new lanes will create a safe passageway for bicyclists with a barrier separating them from traffic.

Rebekah Rooney cycles to work in Edmonton every day; and she means every day. The wind chill was -30 C Thursday and she still cycled to work. “One of the major problems is over-dressing in the winter months,” says Rooney, 31. “If you sweat and then cool down, you can be very uncomfortable if ice forms next to your skin.

“It’s important to dress in layers and estimate pretty accurately what the wind chill might be when you cross the High Level Bridge.”

As a part of a long-term plan to dislodge Boston from its historic standing among the nation’s least-friendly places for bicycling, the city installed a record number of bike lanes last year, expanded safety efforts, and advanced a bike share program that could debut this summer.

The number of people getting around on bicycles in Santa Cruz County has increased more than 25 percent over the past seven years, according to a recent observation survey conducted by the county Health Services Agency.

"We've also seen helmet use rates go up," said Theresia Rogerson, who works on the Community Traffic Safety Coalition. "And more than half of the riders observed were following appropriate traffic rules like stopping at stop signs and lights, and riding with traffic."

Friday, January 28, 2011

Bike Commuting News for January 28

Next week marks the beginning of New Zealand's annual cycling celebration, Bike Wise Month.

Hundreds of events will be held around the country during February, each with the goal of getting as many Kiwis riding as possible, whether commuting, training or just having fun with their families.

Events include: Go By Bike Day (February 16) - A one-off, nationwide event which asks all New Zealanders to ditch the car for a day and give cycle commuting a go, taking the bike to work or school.

The Kansas City, MO City Council unanimously adopted a resolution for Livable Streets, a.k.a. Complete Streets. It’s a powerful high level statement in support of making city streets more inclusive of all users – pedestrians, motorists, bicyclists, the disabled, seniors, children, transit riders, etc.

The Tampa City Council held a workshop yesterday to gather more information for a Bicycle Safety Action Plan.

The city has been working with the Florida Department of Transportation, University of South Florida, Transportation Division, The Tampa Police Department and The Metropolitan Planning Organization. They're also talking with local bicyclists about needed changes.

Whether it’s for commuting, fitness or fun, the number of Auburn, Alabama residents choosing to ride bikes has increased in recent years.

Auburn traffic engineer Brandy Ezelle said the city has noticed this trend and has taken strides toward offering more programs and facilities for bikers, which include more than 35 miles of bike lanes and paths, although many are not contiguous.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Bike Commuting News for January 26

Wyoming State House Defeats Bicycle Safety Bill

The Wyoming state House defeated a bill today that would have required motorists to stay at least 3 feet away from bicyclists they are passing on the road. The measure fell one vote short of the majority needed to pass the House.

Ride on in winter: More bicyclists than ever are refusing to be snowed under by the challenges of winter commuting.

Minnesota riders talk about their challenges and what keeps them going. They report getting to the office feeling mentally and physically sharper. Some people think that bikers have to be a little crazy to be out in the winter. The bikers respond that if they're crazy, so are the skiers, snowmobilers, dog-walkers and everyone else who refuses to spend winter cooped up inside.

Calgarians too scared of traffic to commute by bike

Calgarians want to cycle more often to work or school but don't because they are too scared of traffic, according to a telephone poll of 750 city residents. 19 per cent of city residents reported they already ride at least once a week. Results also showed that more people would commute by bike if there were dedicated lanes.

Edinburgh politician under fire for claiming expenses for bike commute

A councillor in Edinburgh has been criticised for legally claiming expenses for a 12-mile return trip from his home to the Scottish capital’s City Chambers. No one seems to mind when he claims the expenses when he drives...