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Monday, October 20 2014 @ 08:04 AM UTC

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Residents aim to improve Annapolis bike trail access, safety

Biking in the Metro AreaBy Tim Prudente, Capital Gazette

Jon Korin would solve city problems with bicycles.

Less traffic, parking challenges and Chesapeake Bay pollution if more people pedaled.

"If none of those benefits work for you, then do it because it drives the economy," said the Severna Park bicyclist. "Cycling tourism is huge."

Bicycling will be celebrated Wednesday when city officials proclaim it "East Coast Greenway Day" in Annapolis.
...

"Once you get over the Naval Academy Bridge, then you've got to ride with cars along Route 450, turn left on King George Street and over the Spa Creek bridge," he said. "My dream is to see designated bike lanes that give cyclists a safer place to ride."

City spokeswoman Rhonda Wardlaw said officials recognize the gap, but downtown streets aren't wide enough to accommodate parking and bike lanes. There's no plan at this time, she said, to enhance the route downtown.

"The city currently has numerous terrific, but disconnected trails," she said. "(We) would like to see our various departments work with (BikeAAA) to see how we could participate in the greenway project."

She said the proclamation of "East Coast Greenway Day" will promote safe bicycling and healthy living.
...

http://touch.capitalgazette.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-81600821/
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GLOBAL SHIFT AWAY FROM CARS: SAVE $100 TRILLION, 1,700 MEGATONS OF CO2, 1.4 LIVES

Biking Elsewhere According to a Sept. 17th Science Daily article, "More than $100 trillion in cumulative public and private spending, and 1,700 megatons of annual carbon dioxide (CO2) -- a 40 percent reduction of urban passenger transport emissions -- could be eliminated by 2050 if the world expands public transportation, walking and cycling in cities, according to a new report released by the University of California, Davis, and the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP). Further, an estimated 1.4 million early deaths could be avoided annually by 2050 if governments require the strongest vehicle pollution controls and ultralow-sulfur fuels, according to a related analysis of these urban vehicle activity pathways by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) included in the report...
"The report, 'A Global High Shift Scenario: Impacts And Potential For More Public Transport, Walking, And Cycling With Lower Car Use, is the first study to examine how major changes in transport investments worldwide would affect urban passenger transport emissions as well as the mobility of different income groups... "
Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140917073300.htm
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Salisbury program unites establishments, bicyclists

Biking in MarylandB' Spokes: An excellent way to start becoming bike friendly without a whole lot of money, engage the businesses. Read about the Bike-SYB program:

http://www.delmarvanow.com/story/news/local/maryland/2014/10/11/biking-toward-profits/17134163/
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Question 1: Transportation Trust Fund

PoliticsThe General idea is to make it harder to use Transportation Trust Funds to balance the state budget, it still can be done but harder.

My stance is: No Support

What bothers me most is that there is no mention of repairing bridges, better funding for mass transit or even complete streets, just business as usual at MDOT.

Next, even under the old system we could build $3+ billion ICC highways so I don't get why things need to change.

The whole thing reeks of over stressing cars over everything else. Budgets will always be in flux from year to year and IMHO this is what government does. One year some group is unhappy and the next year it is someone else, that is the nature of things. But more than that, a vote yes here is saying, roads and more roads will fix our most pressing needs. And they need to be overly car centric since cars are paying for them right?

See Do Drivers Cover the Cost of Roads? Not By a Long Shot
http://www.baltimorespokes.org/article.php?story=20141002232119321

But but there is so many cars driving... Not really, see Maryland Annual Vehicle Miles of Travel
http://www.baltimorespokes.org/article.php?story=20130529171856978

IMHO it is because Maryland has over stressed driving everywhere that is the basic reason why driving is such a dismal state of affairs. You can't give preferential treatment to the most expensive thing and expect a balanced economical budget, that would be like having steak seven days a week. Nothing against steak or roads but let's keep it at a reasonable level OK? And oh, let's support more diversity.

For further reading see: Maryland transportation "lockbox" has a big hole from Greater Greater Washington
http://greatergreaterwashington.org/post/9163/maryland-transportation-lockbox-has-a-big-hole/
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Laurel seeks to get cycling system into gear

Biking in BaltimoreBy Luke Lavoie, Baltimore Sun

...
Allen, 37, ended up moving to a house on Prince George Street. One year later, he said he leaves his house three or four times a week to traverse on his bike through the area's emerging network of bike lanes.

Allen, who lived in South Laurel for six years before moving into the city limits, said he's noticed shifts in infrastructure toward accommodating cyclists. The effort, which ranges from widening roads to add bike lanes to increasing signage and bike racks, is the result of a 2009 Bikeways Master Plan instituted by the city. This month marks the five-year anniversary of the plan's approval.

Mayor Craig Moe, an avid cyclist himself, said the plan was constructed, in part, as a way to increase connectivity within the city by leveraging existing pathways and roads. He said given the city's compactness, it's four square miles, and existing amenities, which includes pools, parks and various retail, it made sense to reevaluate the system.
...

The plan also instituted increased signage and more bike racks. Additionally, the plan recommended the city require new developers, like those behind Towne Centre at Laurel, build bike-friendly roads and atmospheres.

The results, while anecdotal, have been positive so far, Moe said.
...

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/howard/laurel/ph-ll-bicycles-0918-20140918-story.html
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Will Maryland Finally Build a Safe Bike/Ped Crossing on the Susquehanna?

Biking in Maryland"That’s right: There’s not a single bridge in the state of Maryland that will take you across the Susquehanna River safely on a bike or on foot."

A very well written article: http://usa.streetsblog.org/2014/04/24/will-maryland-finally-build-a-safe-bikeped-crossing-on-the-susquehanna/

And if you have not already, sign the petition: http://www.change.org/p/maryland-department-of-transportation-ensure-that-the-new-amtrak-susquehanna-river-bridge-will-accommodate-cyclists-and-walkers
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County joins with cycling enthusiasts for 100-mile ride

Biking in the Metro AreaBy Ben Weathers, Capital Gazette

Local cyclists are launching a 100-mile bike ride next week to raise money for local charities.

The inaugural Lifeline 100 Century ride will start and end at Kinder Farm Park in Millersville on Oct. 19. Proceeds will benefit local nonprofits, including the Crisis Response System, Recreation Deeds for Special Needs, and Bicycle Advocates for Annapolis and Anne Arundel County, or BikeAAA.

The event will be the culmination of months of planning involving local nonprofits, county police and the county Department of Recreation and Parks, said agency spokeswoman Colleen Joseph.

Recreation officials had been considering such a bike ride for the past few years, but implementation didn't start until the idea was broached to Police Chief Kevin Davis, Joseph said.

Traffic issues were longtime obstacles to getting the ride to move forward. Joseph said Davis was thinking of a similar event and the county linked with BikeAAA to make it a reality.
...

Rides of 56 and 15 miles also will be held the same day, Joseph said.
...

A free children's bike rodeo and family fun ride will be held at Kinder Farm Park on the day of the event.

The ride will coincide with the Making Health Happen Community Health Fair at the park, featuring 20 vendors.

The health fair will be from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will feature activities for kids and families, as well as health screenings.
...

http://touch.capitalgazette.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-81636377/

or

http://bikeaaa.org/lifeline-100/
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New traffic light aims to improve pedestrian safety in College Park

Biking in the Metro AreaBy Mike Murillo, WTOP

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Three college students were killed and several others injured this year while attempting to cross a dangerous section of U.S. Route 1 near the University of Maryland-College Park.

The pedestrian fatalities spurred calls for change from students, lawmakers and families of the victims.

On Thursday, the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) officially completed a number of safety improvements with the launching of a pedestrian signal at Hartwick Road. The new light stops traffic in all directions when a pedestrian crosses the busy highway.

"SHA fast-tracked these projects because we wanted to ensure we can deliver them in the fall semester," said State Highway Administrator Melinda Peters.

In addition to the new signal, the speed limit has been lowered to 25 mph, speed cameras became active 24/7 and a median fence was erected to encourage pedestrians to use the crosswalks.
...

http://www.wtop.com/?nid=893&sid=3718988

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

[B' Spokes: This is much better than my last report on this area. Are they finally starting to get that you address all users of a road?
Let's force pedestrians to cross where they are getting killed for safety - Route 1 in College Park
http://www.baltimorespokes.org/article.php?story=2014071720391011 ]
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U.S. Transportation Secretary Foxx Announces New Initiative to Enhance Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety

Biking Elsewhere
image

DOT 81-14
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Contact:  DOT Press OfficeT
el.: (202) 366-4570 

U.S. Transportation Secretary Foxx Announces New Initiative to Enhance Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety
DOT to launch nationwide safety assessment of key bike/ped routes 

PITTSBURGH – U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx today announced a new initiative to reduce the growing number of pedestrian and bicyclist injuries and fatalities through a comprehensive approach that addresses infrastructure safety, education, vehicle safety and data collection.  The 18-month campaign will begin with road safety assessments conducted by U.S. Department of Transportation field offices in every state, and will produce multiple resources to help communities build streets that are safer for people walking, bicycling, and taking public transportation. Secretary Foxx made the announcement at the Pro Walk, Pro Bike, Pro Place conference, the largest gathering of, transportation engineers, city planners and professional bicycle-pedestrian safety advocates and practitioners in the country. 

“Safety is our highest priority and that commitment is the same regardless of which form of transportation people choose, including walking and biking,” Secretary Foxx said.  “This initiative is aimed at reversing the recent rise in deaths and injuries among the growing number of Americans who bicycle or walk to work, to reach public transportation and to other important destinations.”  

Injuries and fatalities of pedestrian and people bicycling have steadily increased since 2009, at a rate higher than motor vehicle fatalities.  From 2011 to 2012, pedestrian deaths rose 6 percent and bicyclist fatalities went up almost 7 percent. 

The new pedestrian and bicycle safety initiative will promote design improvements to ensure safe and efficient routes for pedestrians and bicycles, promote behavioral safety, and provide education to help individuals make safer travel choices. The initiative will also encourage vehicle safety by drawing on current crash avoidance technologies to alert motorists to the presence of bicyclists and pedestrians. 

The initiative will begin when the Department’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) field offices survey routes for pedestrians and cyclists with local transportation officials and stakeholders to understand where and why gaps exist in the non-motorized transportation network and strategize on ways to close them.  Gaps are areas where the risk of a crash increases due to the lack of sidewalks or other safe infrastructure. The Department’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will participate in assessments to gain understanding of non-motorized crashes involving truck and trains.  

Among the many resources the Department will provide will be a guide to creating “road diets,” in which roadways with lower traffic volumes are redesigned to add space for bicycle riders and pedestrians.  Studies show that road diets reduce all traffic crashes by an average of 29 percent, and when used on rural highways that pass through small towns, they can reduce crashes by almost half – 47 percent.  Additional resources will help practitioners incorporate small safety improvements into many road projects, address “last mile” safety for people taking buses and trains, and make it easier for jurisdictions to count and plan for people traveling by foot and bicycle. 

The Department will work with local officials, advocacy groups, and safety organizations to help champion the use of the new resources by practitioners, law enforcement, and safety organizations.  It also will convene meetings with practitioners and researchers about practices and policies that have been barriers to creating safer streets for non-motorized users. 

The initiative will also focus on improving pedestrian and bicycle routes that provide access to bus stops and train stations.  Research has shown that lower income communities have disproportionately higher rates of pedestrian deaths, as well as less safe pedestrian infrastructure, despite higher reliance on non-motorized modes and public transportation. 

Click here for additional information on the pedestrian and bicycle safety initiative. 

 



http://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USDOT/bulletins/ceb80a
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Statistics Show Shift in Citations of Drivers, Pedestrians for Crosswalk Violations

Biking in MarylandBy ANDREW METCALF, Bethesda Magazine

...
“The police department made a very conscious shift,” Councilmember Hans Riemer said. “It’s deliberate and represents an evolution in their enforcement strategy.”

image
...

He said police are conducting about two to three crosswalk stings per week, but have plans to increase that number to five or six per week. McCullough said the department could increase the number of stings if it could pay more overtime to officers for traffic enforcement.
...

http://www.bethesdamagazine.com/Bethesda-Beat/2014/Statistics-Show-Shift-in-Citations-of-Drivers-Pedestrians-for-Crosswalk-Violations/
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