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Tuesday, September 01 2015 @ 10:04 AM UTC
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You can now bring your bike to Baltimore on weekend MARC trains

Biking in Baltimoreby Gregory Billing, Greater Greater Washington

Starting this weekend, you can take your bike on select MARC trains running between Baltimore and DC on the Penn Line. MARC outfitted two rehabilitated passenger cars to carry passengers and their full-size bicycles. The bike cars will run on weekends between DC and Baltimore, for now.

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[Includes pics of the inside of the train and some people who were on the first run of the bike car.]
[B' Spokes: Excursion idea, Saturday take the morning train to DC, bike north on the C&amp;O Canal at least ~10 miles for the primitive camping sites (and ~ every 5 miles after that) or ~ 60 miles up to Harpers Ferry for a B&amp;B or the Youth Hostel (Season 2014 was April 15th to December 1st.) Bike back Sunday and then take the evening train back to Baltimore. Or heck, DC is a fun place to play tourist on a bike. In short use this service if you like to see more bike accommodations!

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21 Measures for Pedestrian Safety (in Baltimore or Anywhere)

Biking in BaltimoreBy Klaus Philipsen, FAIA, Community Architect

There is hardly a city left in America that doesn't have a Complete Streets policy, and Baltimore is no exception. Unfortunately, while talk is universal, action is much harder to find.

(Just the headings)
1. No right on red anywhere in the central city or where pedestrian traffic is heavy
2. No rush hour lanes directly abutting a sidewalk
3. Well-marked and well-lit crosswalks everywhere, especially mid-block
4. No pedestrian signals requiring push-button activation anywhere downtown
5. Full enforcement of the pedestrian right-of-way laws at crosswalks
6. Longer crossing signal times, especially on wide streets
7. No signals without pedestrian heads
8. All pedestrian signals should provide the “go” signal two seconds before vehicles get green light
9. No pedestrian phase should be so short that it takes two phases to cross a street
10. No inner city bus stop should be without extra space, shelter, and amenities
11. Fewer parking garages in downtown areas of desirability
12. Fewer curb cuts across sidewalks with high pedestrian volume
13. No construction sites that simply close the sidewalk, saying &quot;Pedestrians use other side&quot;
14. No sidewalks with less than 5' of actually usable space, free of obstructions
15. General maximum speed limit of 30mph within city limits, except designated expressways, and 20mph in residential streets and near schools
16. No crosswalk without curb ramps, per ADA
17. Reinstate the red light and speed camera system
18. No large parking lot or garage without marked pedestrian routes and refuges.
19. Each downtown block must have some visual interest point for pedestrians
20. Install Pedestrian rest areas and trailblazing throughout the city.
21. Reduce number of one-way streets.

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Highlights from June's MBPAC Minutes

Biking in Maryland&quot;Steve attended a public hearing regarding plans for the renovation and/or replacement of the Amtrak railroad bridge over the Susquehanna River due to his interest in seeing that a shared use path is included in the renovation and/or replacement plans. He said both DNR and State Highway Administration staff attending this public hearing expressed support for the inclusion of a shared use path. ... Scott says MDP supports the inclusion of bicycle and pedestrian facility on a renovated or replacement Amtrak Railroad Bridge. Greg attended the public hearing and said he was not as optimistic as Steve regarding the inclusion of a shared use path on the Amtrak Bridge.&quot;

&quot;For example the annual Seagull Century bike ride attracts an average of 7,100 cyclists annually who pump $2.5 million into the economy of the Lower Eastern Shore. &quot;

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Bike Maryland December 2014 Update

Bike Maryland updates

Riding Your Bike When It is Cold Is Not Just For The Hardcore!

Cold weather bike rides can be fun, even merry and bright! Let our Bike Minded Safety Program Coordinators show you tips and techniques at a FREE workshop that will remind you cycling is an easy way to get around town for work, errands and play. Experienced bike commuters will offer insight to help you enjoy your bike year round. Meet other commuters and stay for a social bike ride after the workshop! 

Everyday Cycling Made Easy Adult Workshop
Saturday, December 13, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM at the Cold Community Cottage at 4800 Tamarind Rd, Baltimore, MD
FREE, Open to the Public
Register here

2014 Annual Report and the 2015 - 2020 Strategic Plan

Now available, the Bike Maryland 2014 Annual Report is a summary of the accomplishments that resulted from our advocacy and education initiatives. The annual report is intended to give Maryland bicyclists and other interested people information about the organizations activities over the past year. Please review it! The annual report will be accessible on the Bike Maryland website on the Achievements page under the About section. In January 2015 a finacial report will be added to this page and will disclose our 2014 financial performance.

To become a Bike Maryland stakeholder and receive a hard copy of the 2014 Annual Report, please join us as a member here

Keeping with the theme of focusing our efforts and operating transperantly, Bike Maryland has released the recently developed 2015-2020 Strategic Plan. Created in partnership with local bicycling advocates from across the state, this living document is also now available on our website under the About section. The Strategic Plan identifies our core initiatives and lays our measurable goals and actions, which will help fulfill our mission.

Bike Maryland End of the Year Match Campaign Going On Now!

Please consider Bike Maryland as you prepare for your end of the year giving. Between now and December 31st every individual contribution up to $5,000 will be matched by Race Pace Bicycles during our 2014 End of The Year Charitable Matching Campaign. That means your 100% tax-deductible gift will travel twice as far and help us pedal twice as hard to achieve our mission to improve bicycling conditions across the state! Please consider Bike Maryland as you plan for your end of the year giving and click HERE to donate. 

Thank you to Race Pace Bicycles for their dynamic role in helping Maryland become a GREAT place to ride!

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Biking Elsewhere-&gt; According to a Nov.17th CityLab article, &quot;In China's rapidly changing urban landscape, the Chinese middle class may be bearing the greatest burden when it comes to the connection between the way their cities are being built and rates of obesity, a new study suggests.

&quot;A paper recently published in the journal Preventive Medicine (Walking, Obesity and Urban Design in Chinese Neighborhoods: <a href=""></a>;) examines the connections between obesity, income, and the built environment in two of China's major cities, Shanghai and Hangzhou. The research team is headed up by Mariela Alfonzo, an assistant research professor at the NYU School of Engineering and a Fulbright scholar who has spent years developing measures of walkability in the United States and is now expanding that work to China.

&quot;Alfonzo and her colleagues found that, as in other countries, there is a link between neighborhood designtheir walkabilityand levels of physical activity among residents. They also found, however, that the relationship between income, obesity, and physical activity is not a linear one in China. There, the poorest and the most affluent were both less likely to be obese than the middle class...&quot;

Source: <a href=""></a>;

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling &amp; Walking.
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Waiting for the perfect proof of what works

Health & Environment&quot;The evidence base on the clinical and behavioral interventions to reduce obesity is far from complete, and ongoing investment in research is an imperative. However, in many cases this requirement is proving a barrier to action. It need not be so. Rather than wait for perfect proof of what works, we should experiment with solutions, especially in the many areas where interventions are low risk. We have enough knowledge to do more.&quot;

Source: <a href=""></a>;

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling &amp; Walking.
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Canal Towns Program Plugs Businesses into the Enormous Potential of Trail Tourism

Bike Pathsby Jake Lynch, Rails To Trails

&quot;When coal mining died and the railroads left, a lot of the towns really struggled. What the trail has done has brought that transportation corridor back to them. And it's actually helped to sustain businesses and revitalize the downtowns.&quot;

— Bill Atkinson, Maryland Department of Planning


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Poll: Support for Active Transportation Funding Is High Across Party Lines

Biking Elsewhereby Tanya Snyder, Streets Blog

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Biking Elsewhere-&gt; According to an article in the November issue of Governing, &quot;In a nation where few students still walk to school, how has Lakewood, Ohio, gone without school buses for so long? Lakewood doesn't have any school buses and it never has.

&quot;There are a few reasons why Lakewood may be the nation's unofficial walk-to-school capital. Density, for one... the city of 52,000 has 9,000 residents per square mile.... As Lakewood grew, the city opted against setting up a school bus system, focusing instead on building schools to fit within the community. Most of the schools are multistory buildings on relatively small lots, making them easier to incorporate into residential neighborhoods. As the facilities aged over the years, officials chose to restore and upgrade the existing structures, rather than build sprawling new single-story campuses.
&quot;In Lakewood, there's another benefit to having everyone walk: The city saves a fortune on school buses. When Lakewood does need to provide transportation for students -- for field trips, out-of-town games and so on -- it contracts with the nearby town of Olmsted Falls. But all told, the Lakewood school district spends about $500,000 a year on transportation, about $1 million less than comparable school districts...&quot;

Source: <a href=""></a>;

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling &amp; Walking.
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Bike Laws-&gt; According to an Oct. 29th City of Boston media release, &quot;Today the Boston City Council voted unanimously to pass a Truck Side Guard Ordinance,... [mandating] all large city-contracted vehicles to be equipped with enhanced safety measures designed to prevent fatalities and further reduce the risks of a collision with pedestrians and cyclists.

&quot;The Truck Side Guard Ordinance is the first of its kind in the country. The ordinance requires vehicles over 10,000 pounds (for tractor-trailers a combined weight over 26,000 pounds) and awarded a contract with the City of Boston to have side guards, convex mirrors, cross-over mirrors, and blind-spot awareness decals. Vehicles associated with an awarded City contract will be inspected for side guards by the Inspectional Services Department and issued a permit, certifying the vehicle for 2-years. For those vehicles not in compliance, businesses will face a fine, escalating from $100 for the first offense, to potential termination of the contract...

&quot;In 2013, the Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics and the Public Works Department undertook the largest municipal pilot of truck side guards in the nation. The Truck Side Guard Ordinance is a result of this pilot, which included more than a year of testing three different types of side guards on 16 large vehicles, reviewing data from external studies, and from field observations. In the City of Boston pilot, each vehicle cost about $1,800 to outfit and will last the lifetime of the vehicle.&quot;

Source: <a href=""></a>;

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling &amp; Walking.

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Maryland should adopt the Idaho stop law.

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