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Tuesday, September 01 2015 @ 08:14 PM UTC
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Cops on Bikes. The Ocean City Police Department [video]

Biking in Maryland
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City hatches plan to raise private money for free bikes for school kids

Biking in Baltimoreby Mark Reutter, Baltimore Brew

The Baltimore Department of Transportation is requesting over $50,000, mostly for a consultant, to help it raise private funds to provide free bicycles to K-8 school children.

An allocation of $45,818 is set to be awarded to McCormick Taylor, a Philadelphia-based consultant, with an additional $6,874 for in-house administrative costs, according to the request before tomorrow’s Board of Estimates meeting.

The expenses will go toward the agency’s so-far-unpublicized effort to give away bikes to children to stimulate “awareness and enthusiasm” for cycling in Baltimore.

...

<a href="https://www.baltimorebrew.com/2015/01/13/city-hatches-plan-to-raise-private-money-for-free-bikes-for-school-kids/">https://www.baltimorebrew.com/2015/01/13/city-hatches-plan-to-raise-private-money-for-free-bikes-for-school-kids/</a>;
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Is “Safe” Road Design Killing Bicyclists and Pedestrians?`

Biking in BaltimoreBY JOSH COHEN, Next City

In 2012, 4,743 pedestrians and 726 bicyclists were killed in the United States, up 6 percent from the previous year. Rep. Rick Larsen, of Washington, has a sneaking suspicion that road design — specifically designs that make things safer for cars — are a big part of the problem.

To find out for sure, Larsen along with Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton (of D.C.) and Peter DeFazio (of Oregon) sent a letter to the Government Accountability Office in late December asking for an investigation into trends and causes of crashes involving bicyclists and pedestrians and recommendations for improving safety.

The request centers on the question of whether or not road designs that make driving safer are putting bicyclists and pedestrians at greater risk — at a time when cities around the country are creating more bike lanes and promoting walkability.

Their letter says, “Roads are designed and built with wider, straighter lanes and have fewer objects near the edges, more turn lanes, and wider turning radii at intersections. While these practices improve driving safety, a suspected unintended consequence is that drivers travel faster when they feel safer. Greater speeds can increase the frequency and severity of crashes with pedestrians and cyclists who are moving at much slower speeds and have much less protection than a motorized vehicle affords.” (In an effort to stop pedestrian deaths, in November, NYC tackled the speed issue by reducing the city’s default to 25 mph.)
...

<a href="http://nextcity.org/daily/entry/road-design-pedestrian-safety-bicyclist-safety">http://nextcity.org/daily/entry/road-design-pedestrian-safety-bicyclist-safety</a>;
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Bike Maryland January 2015 Newsletter

Bike Maryland updatesBike Maryland Logo

Wishing You and Yours Safe Riding in 2015

Happy New Year

Less than two weeks into 2015 and the Maryland cycling movement has gained momentum!

Response to State’s Attorney Press Conference on Charges in Cycling Related Crash

On the behalf of citizens in Baltimore and across the state, Bike Maryland and Bikemore appreciate the efforts of the Baltimore Police Department and State’s Attorney’s office in pursuing justice for Tom Palermo and his family. Charges to the driver of the vehicle that struck and killed Tom Palermo on December 27th were announced in a press release from the State's Attorney's office. The death of a bicyclist in a car collision is a terrible event, but preventable if all road users slow down and commit their full attention to the operation of what can be a deadly weapon when wielded incorrectly.

Demonstrated in the image above from January 1, 2015,  over 1,000 community members came out in a powerful show of commraderie and cycling spirit in a time of grief, anger, and lossBike Maryland continues to work closely with Bikemore and local leaders to ensure that Tom’s passing is not in vain. We express our gratitude for the increased opportunities to raise awarness and educate bicyclists and drivers alike through various media outlets, listed here and will continue to work towards improved safety conditions for all road users.

In November 2014, Bike Maryland hosted our first legislative planning meeting with leaders and advocates from nearly every county in the state to set achievable goals for the 2015 Legislative Session, which begins January 14th. As we shift gears into this new year, our organization will determine which pro-bicycle action items we can accomplish  in partnership local officials, government leaders and with transportation authorities, including the Department of Transportation, Motor Vehicle Administration and State Highway Association. Stay tuned and mark your calendar for the Annual Bicycle Symposium in Annapolis on March 17th. This event is free to the public and will include an opportunity to meet with legislators to discuss local issues.

Now more than ever we need to and we pledge to raise the collective voice of bicyclists, in Maryland and everywhere

Bike Maryland Membership Drive! Are You With Us?

This month we launch our membership drive! You may have set a New Year's resolution and here at Bike Maryland, we hope included in your personal mission for 2015 is a commitment to be a better cyclist; meaning, we want you to ride more, we want you to practice safe techniques, and we want you to unite with us and the thousands of other Maryland cyclists who strive for improved conditions and increased recognition.

Strength in numbers. We need your support and alliance with our mission.

Please join us as a member and enjoy exclusive member benefits such as the Bike Maryland MVA Organizational License Plate, pictured above.

Call For Comments On MD 175 Widening Project

MD 175 by Fort Meade is being widened in phases and just received new funding to advance to the next stage for one section of MD 175. Public comments are being accepted on the project through January 14th and will be passed directly to the design team. The more people that demand separated or protected bike lanes, the better the chances are that they will be built.

The current project will make MD 175 a 6 lane road (3 lanes in each direction) with striped bike lanes on the sides of the road, no barriers or separation. This design is up to SHA standards, but we need to tell SHA that more is needed. 

Please spread the word and email comments to comments@baltometro.org, refer to the MD 175 widening, the phase from Reece Road to Disney Road, and insist that they separate or protect the bike lanes!

Visit the SHA project page here.

Harford County Advocacy Meeting

Who & What: Meeting for Harford County bicycle advocacy to discuss road connection, trail project priorities, and the 2015 legislative session.
When: Thursday, January 15 from 6:00 - 7:30 PM
Where: Duclaw, 16 A Bel Air South Parkway, Bel Air, MD
RSVP not necessary.

Baltimore Youth Cycling Group 

Baltimore Youth Cycling (BYC) is a new group forming to give youth 8-16 the opportunity to get a taste of bicycling as an organized team sport. Supported by local bicycle shops and clubs, structured practices led by dedicated coaches will bring a new sense of camaraderie to our children as they learn bike skills, life lessons, and community action. BYC is based on a model used with massive success by other communities to re-imagine the cycling culture of their city. 

On Sunday, January 18th BYC will be holding a community meeting for interested parents and kids and will be electing their new board at De Kleine Duivel starting at 5 pm. Pizza will be provided by a club partner and drinks available for purchase.

More information, click here to visit the groups Facebook page or the website here.

2015 Bike Maryland Event Dates. Be a Part of Maryland Bicycling. 

Mark your calendars and join us!! Details forthcoming: 

  • March 17, 2015 - 18th Annual Bicycle Symposium in Annapolis, *always free
  • September 12, 2015 - 6th Annual Larry's Ride at Camp Milldale in Reisterstown
  • September 27, 2015 - 22nd Annual Tour du Port at Canton Waterfront Park in Baltimore City
Look Forward to Our Next Newsletter
  • 2015 Symposium Registration Information!
  • 2015 Bike Maryland Jersey Design Contest
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The Bishop, the Cyclist and a Death on the Road

Biking in BaltimoreBy Jennifer Steinhauer, New York Times

...
“This type of thing is your worst fear,” said Jed Weeks, president of the board of Bikemore, a Baltimore cycling advocacy group. “You are in a bike lane and you are struck and killed from behind by someone who doesn’t even remain at the scene. That worst fear realized has galvanized us.&quot;

<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/10/us/baltimore-bishop-charged-in-hit-and-run-case.html">http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/10/us/baltimore-bishop-charged-in-hit-and-run-case.html</a>;
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The Feds Quietly Acknowledge the Driving Boom Is Over

Biking Elsewhereby Phineas Baxandall, Streets blog

image
...

Some states, like Washington and Maryland, have begun to ratchet down their forecasts of future VMT.
...

http://usa.streetsblog.org/2015/01/07/the-feds-quietly-acknowledge-the-driving-boom-is-over/
[B' Spokes: While true I have seen words in some annual report that MDOT is no longer making predictions as Vehicle Miles Traveled has leveled off since 2005. but as a friend pointed out, just look at the new road projects and there are the wild traffic predictions. And I will assert these wild predictions are keeping the state from making much progress in accommodating bicyclists.]
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C and O Canal Invites Feedback on Proposal to Increase and Expand Entrance and Other Fees Park-wide

Bike Paths

HAGERSTOWN, Md. - Chesapeake &Ohio Canal National Historical Park (C&O Canal) in compliance with a nation-wide review on updating entrance fees is inviting the public to comment on proposed entrance and other fee increases. Fees collected at the park are critical to the park's operation, and 100%of the fees collected at the C&O Canal are invested in park projects that improve facilities and experiences for park visitors.

In a memo dated September 5, 2014, National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis, authorized park superintendents to begin a civic engagement process associated with increasing entrance fees within units of the National Park System. In an effort to standardize entrance fees, the 131 units that charge entrance fees have been placed in one of four categories based on size, complexity of operations and typical visitation patterns. To arrive at greater consistency around the Service, parks have been asked to bring their fees into compliance with others within their category.C&O Canal is in Category 1. Other similar parks within Category 1 in this region include: Antietam National Battlefield;Fort Washington Park;Great Falls Park, Virginia;Harpers Ferry National Historical Park;Manassas National Battlefield Park, and Prince William Forest Park.

C&O Canal's current park entrance fee has been in place since 2002. The only location in the park where an entrance fee is charged is at the Great Falls Tavern area off of MacArthur Boulevard in Potomac, MD. The park proposes to expand entrance fee collection to all areas of the park outside of the District of Columbia and to implement a parking fee at Fletchers Cove. As part of this fee expansion, the park proposes to discontinue the reciprocal agreement currently in place with Great Falls Park, Virginia, which allows visitors to purchase a day pass or annual pass that is valid at both the C&O Canal and Great Falls Park, VA entrance stations.

The park also proposes to extend the daily pass effective dates from three days to seven days to better align with popular recreational activities, such as cycling the 184.5 mile towpath.

The proposed entrance/parking fees that would become effective no sooner than May 1, 2015 are as follows:

Park Annual Pass:

·Current: $20 Great Falls, MD only

·Proposed: $30 park-wide outside of the District of Columbia

Per Vehicle Pass:

·Current: $5/vehicle for 3 days Great Falls, MD only

·Proposed:

oDistrict of Columbia line to Seneca Creek(near Canal towpath mile 22)

§$15 for 7 days

oWest of Seneca Creek to Cumberland, MD

§$5 in 2015 for 7 days

§$15 in 2017 for 7 days

Per Person Pass:

·Current: $3/person for 3 days Great Falls, MD only

·Proposed:

oDistrict of Columbia line to Seneca Creek(near towpath mile 22)

§$7 for 7 days

oWest of Seneca Creek to Cumberland, MD

§$3 in 2015 for 7 days

§$7 in 2017 for 7 days

Motorcycle Pass:

·Current:$5 for 3 days Great Falls, MD only

·Proposed:

oDistrict of Columbia line to Seneca Creek(near towpath mile 22)

§$10 for 7 days

oWest of Seneca Creek to Cumberland, MD

§$5 in 2015 for 7 days

§$10 in 2017 for 7 days

Entrance fees are not charged to persons under 16 years of age or holders of the America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Senior, Access or Military Passes. These passes may be obtained at the park. In addition, the park offers at least six fee-free days per year.

C&O Canal NHP is also proposing to increase or institute fees for campgrounds, picnic pavilions and parking at Fletchers Cove. Comparability studies have been completed to determine rates. The proposals are as follows:

Drive-In Campgrounds:

·Single Site Rate: Current: $10 per night, Proposed $20 per night

·Group Site Rate: Current $20 per night, Proposed $40 per night

Hiker-Biker Camping Sites: Current: No Charge, Proposed $20 per night

Picnic Pavilion: Carderock Pavilion

·Monday-Thursday: Current $150 per day, Proposed $250 per day

·Friday-Sunday &Holidays: Current $250 per day, Proposed $350 per day

Parking: Fletchers Cove - There is currently no parking charge;however, the option to establish a parking charge is being evaluated and proposed for comment.

"We are committed to keeping the park affordable and providing visitors with the best possible experiences," Superintendent Kevin Brandt said. "Fee revenue is absolutely critical to the park operation, and we ask for the public's feedback and support. National Parks are still one of America's best bargains. I don't know of anything a family can do for 7 days for just $15. The entrance fee provides full access to the park including: the historic towpath;more than 17 miles of backcountry trails;numerous visitor centers and interpretive programs and access to the Potomac River. The park is a popular place where people come to recreate, to learn, to be challenged physically and to be inspired and renewed;however, the park cannot run itself for free, and our fee revenue is essential to providing for public safety, recreation and resource protection."
Entrance fees have supported a wide range of projects that improved park conditions and visitor experience including: restoration of the Great Falls Tavern, Western Maryland Railroad Lift Bridge, Lockhouse 44, Ferry Hill Plantation and Hancock Visitor Centers;new picnic tables, grills and fire rings for campgrounds throughout park;developing and installing exhibits in visitor centers such as Great Falls and Ferry Hill Plantation;repairing park wells and hand pumps;removing trees from the canal, installation of a water fountain in Williamsport;restoration of historic lockhouses;improving ADA accessibility at park comfort stations, repairing replica canal boats used in interpretive and education programs, and rehabilitation of the CCC era restroom in Great Falls into a space for the free Bike Loaner program. Additional revenue raised by a fee increase could be used to restore additional historic structures such as Swains Lockhouse;Conococheague, Tonoloway and Seneca Creek aqueducts expand the park's ability to maintain the towpath;improve campground safety by establishing campground host sites at drive-in campgrounds;restore water in the canal between Lock 5 and Anglers;extend the re-watered section of the canal in Hancock;preservation work on the Paw Paw Tunnel;improve river access at Fletchers Cove and Dam #4, and increase interpretive and educational programming park-wide.


The C&O Canal is a strong economic engine for the area. In 2013, the C&O Canal hosted nearly 5 million visitors who contributed more than $80 million to the local economy and supported more than 1,000 jobs related to tourism.

To provide comments on the proposed fee increases, go to:  http://parkplanning.nps.gov/cocanalfeesThe public has the opportunity to comment on the increases for a 48-day period ending on February 22, 2015. Written comments should be provided through this website.
Interested citizens are invited to discuss the proposed fee increases at public meetings to be held in various locations around the park as follows:

January 21, 2015, at the Brunswick City Hall, Council Meeting Room, 1 West Potomac Street, Brunswick, MD 21716 from 6:30-8:00 PM

January 27, 2015, at C&O Canal Park Headquarters, 1850 Dual Highway, Hagerstown, MD 21740 from 6:30-8:00 PM

January 29, 2015, at Canal Place, 13 Canal St, 2nd floor, Cumberland, MD 21502 from 6:30-8:00 PM

February 5, 2015, at Glen Echo Town Hall, 6106 Harvard Ave, Glen Echo, MD 20812 from 7:00-8:30 PM

Following the comment period and public meetings, feedback will determine how, or if, a fee increase would be implemented.



http://www.nps.gov/choh/parknews/c-and-o-canal-invites-feedback-on-proposal-to-increase-and-expand-entrance-and-other-fees-park-wide.htm
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Biking advocates bemoan slow pace of promised safety improvements

Biking in Baltimore[B' Spokes: A lot of talk about the need for infrastructure and cycling fatalities. Nothing against facilities especially if we are going to have them everywhere. What? They are not going to be everywhere, well then how about some more stress on education and enforcement then. Between this Baltimore Sun article and Bike Maryland's policy statement (<a href="https://www.bikemaryland.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Bike_MD_PolicyPaper.pdf">https://www.bikemaryland.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Bike_MD_PolicyPaper.pdf</a>; ) I feel like screaming EDUCATION and ENFORCEMENT are needed as well!]
*******************************************************************************************************
By Kevin Rector, Baltimore Sun

As the number of bicyclists has risen in Baltimore and across the nation in the last decade, city planners and other government officials have responded with a broad range of initiatives.

They've set aside millions of dollars for designated bike lanes. They've enacted laws to better protect cyclists. And they've made bicyclists and pedestrians more of a priority in urban renewal and so-called complete streets transportation projects.

Still, bicyclists, biking advocates and families devastated by serious accidents say real progress has been slow — leading to tragic incidents such as the recent collision that killed avid cyclist Thomas Palermo in Baltimore. Despite programs to improve safety, bicyclists in Maryland are regularly forced to travel on dangerous roads designed almost exclusively for cars and trucks, the advocates say.
...

<a href="http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bs-md-biking-safety-20150103-story.html">http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bs-md-biking-safety-20150103-story.html</a>;
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DelDOT to install "Bicycles IN LANE" signs at key I95 crossings

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: This is a lot better than our standard dual sign that reads "Bikes Share the Road."]
By Frank Warnock, 1st State Bikes

image

Thanks to a successful petition drive - and a Chief Traffic Engineer who takes a pro-active approach toward bicycle and pedestrian safety - a new and unique bicycle warning sign is heading for approval. Working with 1st State BIKES advocates, Mark Luszcz (P.E, DelDOT) designed the sign that will give Delaware another 1st on the national stage, rolling out the words "IN LANE" in conjunction with the standard bicycle warning sign (bicycle symbol on yellow sign).
...

http://www.1stbikes.org/2015/01/deldot-to-install-bicycles-in-lane.html
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Does Speeding Really Get You There Any Faster?

Biking ElsewhereBy Eric Ravenscraft, Life Hacker

...
DistanceSpeed LimitSpeed +10Time (in minutes)Time w/SpeedingSavings
15354525.71205.71
1545552016.363.64
15556516.3613.852.51
...

http://lifehacker.com/does-speeding-really-get-you-there-any-faster-1556767685
[B' Spokes: And this does not take into account traffic lights, which are the great equalizer of speeds. I'll note when I was in Arizona and began driving almost everyone drove the speed limit there with a few exceptions. Driving here it's flipped, few drive the speed limit. Here I take my life in hands doing the speed limit on the freeways as cars come up behind me doing 20+ the speed limit. Of course I am used to that riding my bike, so no big deal really but it is kind of ironic that I can have a longer line of cars behind me trying to pass driving then what I have ever had riding my bike.

But what I really want to point out that the chance for survival from being hit by a car is cut in half when when the vehicle is traveling 40 vs 30 mph.
image

My thoughts today have been on the tragic death of Tom Palermo, sure DUI is bad, texting is bad all of which lead to the driver striking Tom but I'll give you this thought... it was the speed of the vehicle that killed Tom. Traffic enforcement is a joke in this state especially those that can help improve the safety of bicyclists and pedestrians. Crosswalk stings, virtually nonexistent enforcement of the 3 foot passing rule, again nonexistent. At least come out twice a year and make some effort, some news, some something, please! ]
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