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Baltimore County Projects “Shovel Ready” but no bike projects :(

Biking in the Metro AreaSmith Outlines $140 Million Infrastructure Request NONE of which are bike ped related. While its 2005 bicycle access plan gathers dust and while 22% of the County's traffic fatalities involve a pedestrian or bicyclists (national avg 13%) alleyways get attention while we don't. (48% of Baltimore County's bike crashes and 23% of pedestrian crashes involve kids 5-15 (kids represent 12.3% of the County population.)
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Eco Ride

Biking in the Metro Areaimage
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!!BBC 25TH ANNUAL INSTRUCTIONAL RIDE SERIES!!

Biking in the Metro AreaOUR POPULAR INSTRUCTIONAL PROGRAM IS CELEBRATING A QUARTER CENTURY!!

The BALTIMORE BICYCLING CLUB'S Instructional Ride Series will begin with an orientation to be held on Sunday, April 26, 2009 at 10:30 a.m. at the Ridgely Middle School in Baltimore County.

This series is offered to anyone over 16 years of age interested in learning the basic skills of cycling, including doing minor road repairs and improving as a rider. We want to help people new to our sport find a comfortable riding level and develop so they can at least ride on the BBC casual rides by the end of the series and to permit experienced riders who are new to club riding to meet and to learn about group riding. The ride series will cover both road and recreational trail riding.

At the orientation, we will demonstrate cycling skills and techniques and discuss bicycles, equipment and clothing and answer any questions about the program. We will watch a short, informative video on cycling safety and bike handling. If you bring your bicycle to the orientation, we can check it out for you and show you how to do a pre-ride bike check. The indoor orientation will be held RAIN OR SHINE. Weather permitting, anyone who wants to do so can join us for a short ride following the orientation. You must have and wear a helmet in order to ride.
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BikePed Beacon -- January 2009

Biking in the Metro Area
 

The following newsflash from the Baltimore Regional Transportation Board details current news, events, etc. in regards to biking and walking both in and around the Baltimore region.

The information found in the newsflash is informative; it could inspire some to become more involved in the process of improving conditions for biking and walking.

Or it could inspire a bike ride or a walk...

Amber Blake
BikePed ED


  Upcoming BRTB Committee Meetings 
 
Baltimore Regional Transportation Board 
    Tuesday, January 27, 2009 at  9:00 a.m.

Technical Committee

    Tuesday, February 3, 2009 at 9:30 a.m.

Citizens Advisory Committee 
    Wednesday, February 4, 2009 at 5:30 p.m.

Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Group
    Wednesday, March 4, 2009 at 1:00 p.m.

All BRTB Committee meetings are held at the BMC offices (2700 Lighthouse Point East, Suite 310, Baltimore), MD 21224) and are open to the public.

 
>> View Upcoming Meeting Agendas   >> Read Recent Meeting Minutes  
$225 MILLION FOR TRANSIT.  WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Transportation Outlook 2035After several months of public outreach and involvement, the BRTB has recently released for public review and comment, the draft preferred alternative for the amendment to the Baltimore region's long-range transportation plan, Transportation Outlook 2035.

This draft preferred alternative proposes $225 million in funding for regional transit projects, beginning in 2020, including:
  • Green Line Transit
  • Park-and-Ride spaces
  • Carroll County Transit
  • Intermodal Facilities / MARC stations / Transit Oriented Development (TOD)
  • Dedicated bus lanes
In response to public comment, the projects included in this amendment focus on ways to make the regional transit system more user-friendly and attractive to a broader segment of the region's population and workforce.

A public input period will run through Friday, January 23, 2009. During this time, public comments will be accepted by mail, fax, or online using our public comment form.

Comments may also be submitted in person at a public meeting on Thursday, January 15, 2009 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. or 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the BMC offices located at 2700 Lighthouse Point East, Suite 310, Baltimore, MD 21224.



STATION NORTH BIKE RACK PROJECT - FINALISTS SELECTED   
Proposed Rendering of Bike ParkingJudges have selected eight finalists, including three Maryland Institute College of Art students, to design and build eight one-of-a-kind bike racks to be installed by next spring in Baltimore's Station North district.

The designs were submitted as part of the Station North Bike Rack Project, a competition held this fall to help raise the bike rack to an art form and make Baltimore a more bike-friendly city.

A public display of the 79 designs was held on Dec. 12 at 20 W. North Ave. The winners will each receive $4,000 to execute their designs for locations to be determined.

The finalists are: Sanjit Roy, Ethan Rochmis, Irina Dukhnevich, Chris Shea, Andrea Dombrowski, Daniel Raimond, Paul Capetola and Nick Trincia. Dombrowski, Dukhnevich and Capetola are MICA students. 

 >> See Photogallery

Photo Source: Urban Palimpsest

BALTIMORE CITY  SEEKS NEW LOCATIONS TO INSTALL BIKE RACKS
 
bikerackAside from "Share the Road" signs, bike racks are the #2 contributor to increased bike ridership.  Baltimore City's DOT purchases and installs bike racks in conjunction with the development of the bike network to allow bicyclists to park at key destinations and they are seeking new locations for new bicycle racks.  Details are listed below. 
 
Installation & Maintenance process
  1. Property owner requests a rack (or racks) for installation
  2. Bike racks are purchased and installed by DOT on a first-come/first-served basis
  3. If racks require maintenance, DOT will replace the existing rack in kind.

Bike Rack options

  1. Standard 36" x 30" powder-coated inverted "U" racks, typically installed in sidewalks and parking lots. Each rack holds 2 bicycles.
  2. "Meter racks" installed on top of parking meter poles once meter heads are replaced. Each rack can hold 1-2 bicycles.
  3. "On street parking" converted an existing on-street car parking place to accommodate 8-12 bicycles.  On-street bike parking is reserved for commercial areas.

Please contact Nate Evans in the Department of Transportation's Planning Division at 410-396-6586 or nevans@baltimorecity.gov if you are interested.

CITY OF BALTIMORE TO HOST BICYCLE SUMMIT IN SPRING OF 2009
  A million bikesThe City of Baltimore Department of Transportation (DOT) has been working hard to implement the May 2006 Bicycle Master Plan.  Bicycle lanes and sharrows are being integrated into city streets, storm grates are being improved, and bicycle racks are being places, along with other improvements.     
 
Now that Baltimore is becoming more bicycle friendly, it is necessary to inform citizens and visitors about safe bicycling practices and the city plans to do just that at a bicycle summit, to be held in Druid Hill Park this Spring. 
  The summit will bring together both public and private partners and include discussions on: Teaching safe cycling practices Encouraging bicycle commuting through mentoring and other programs Getting people on bikes including new information on how to find the right bicycle for you! Fostering public/private partnerships to promote bicycling and active livingIf you are interested in volunteering at or sponsoring the event please contact Traci McPhail at traci.mcphail@baltimorecity.gov or Nate Evans at nate.evans@baltimorecity.gov >;> View Baltimore City's Bicycle Master Plan

  NEW DVD TEACHES BICYCLE SAFETY, COMPETENCE AND CONFIDENCE

Cyclist on Bridge

A 5 minute preview of the recently released DVD - Geared Up The Essentials of Adult Bicycling - is now available on the AdultBicycling.com web site.

With so many adults bicycling, this DVD is very timely. Competence, Confidence and Safety is the message. Please take a moment to view the video or share with others.

TRANSIT ORIENTED DEVELOPMENT SUMMIT

Transit Oriented Development Summit II - January 27, 2009On Tuesday, January 27, 2009 from 7 to 9 p.m. several area organizations will host a 2nd Transit Oriented Development Summit at the Thumel Business Center Auditorium (11 W. Mount Royal Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21201).  

Topics to be discussed include Central Maryland's opportunities and challenges for TOD, new initiatives and advances in local TOD planning, and an emerging national agenda to promote smart investment in infrastructure and innovation.

The event is free and open to the public and is accessible by MTA Bus Lines 3, 11, 21, 61, 64, Light Rail and MARC Train.

For more information or to RSVP, contact Brian O'Malley at bomalley@cmtalliance.org or 410-332-4172 ext. 122.

>;>> Download a flyer

In The News
 
Join Our Mailing List
 

BMC Logo             
              Amber Blake
              Baltimore Metropolitan Council
              410-732-0500 x1030
 
              ablake@baltometro.org
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Howard County survey

Biking in the Metro AreaSome of you may know the BAHC president, Jack Guarneri. We are trying to get a survey going to rate roads in Howard County. Participation is not quite what we hoped for. If any of you ride Howard County roads, can you give us some feedback? (the survey is Howard County only...we are trying to stay focused.)
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\"\'Cross my Heart\" and the SUPERBOWL of SINGLESPEED CX

Biking in the Metro Areaimage

"'Cross my Heart" and the SUPERBOWL of SINGLESPEED CX
Presented by
Proteus Bicycles

College Park, MD

Sunday, February 01, 2009
Online Registration Will Open
Thursday, January 01, 2009 at 8:00 AM ET
 CATEGORYDISTANCESTART TIME  FEE  PRIZES
Men's 1,2,3
 45
minutes 
10:00 AM 
$25
merch top 3 
Men's 2,3,4
 45
minutes 
11:00 AM 
$25
merch top3 
Men's Cat 4
 45
minutes 
12:00 PM 
$25
prizes top 3 
Women's 1,2
 45
minutes 
1:00 PM 
$25
merch top 3 
Women's 3,4
 45
minutes 
1:00 PM 
$25
merch top 3 
Under 16
 3
laps 
1:02 PM 
$10
prizes top 6 
Singlespeed only
 45
minutes 
2:10 PM 
$25
merch top 3 

The Race:

It’s always a sad goodbye when cyclocross season ends. We're having a post-season race for fun to keep things rolling a little longer.  But we’re doing things a little bit differently: The Elites always get to sleep in, so we’re going to run the race order backwards so the "little guys" can catch a break for once.  In addition to the "normal" categories, we also added a Singlespeed only category. Now, this isn’t Portland, so there won’t be any Tequila shots on the course or anything like that, but this is still your chance to show why Singlespeed Cyclocross is a special kind of riding reserved for only the extremely strong, stubborn or stupid.

Pint glasses:  Free pint glasses for the first 25 pre-registered participants.  Additional glasses will be available for purchase.  

The Course:

Expect some fast pavement, a fair amount of trails through the woods, stairs, gravel, some off camber portions and a few fun descents. No promises, but we are also working very hard on getting a snow machine in case mother nature doesn’t give us any.

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Bus driver Training

Biking in the Metro AreaCommercial Driver's License (CDL) Manual
Problem

Currently Maryland's (and most likely other States as well) the CDL Manual says that bicyclists are hazards and that truck drivers should honk at them (ok, in the manual it says tap the horn lightly but still that is totally bogus safety information.)

The League of American Bicyclists (LAB) in their Bike Friendly States (BFS) program had this question:
In the state driver's CDL testing and manual are questions and information regarding motorists rights and responsibilities toward bicyclists included?
Which to me implies that there is something better out their then what Maryland has.

We just got this response back from someone at MVA:
Sorry this is a week later, but wanted to be sure I passed along this information with reference to the CDL Manual. It was suggested in the email discussion to update the CDL manual. In fact, Maryland's CDL manual is modeled on the AAMVA manual (American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrations), and the sections mentioned in the email discussion regarding bicycles are actually taken word for word from the AAMVA model. There is a new version being printed this month with changes as a result of national model changes. I double-checked before sending this, and the new version of the CDL manual will have the same language on bicycles.

Because the verbage is basically handed down to us, any updates to the manual are definitely not something that could be easily changed -- likely, any request for changes would have to work their way through nationally. It may seem unfriendly for trucks to blow their horn (or tap it lightly) at bicycles to make them aware of a truck behind them (getting ready to pass), and for bicycles to be listed as a potential hazard to trucks, but certainly the national model to teach truck drivers how to drive safely would not suggest harrassment of bicycles. Both of these sections mentioned are from the section on "Driving Safely" -- with the first under "Communicating Your Presence" and the second under "Seeing Hazards."
This seems to imply that Maryland has the "best" standard CDL manual.
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BAHC plans, activities and initiatives.

Biking in the Metro AreaHappy Holidays to All Howard County Cyclists! Although it is the off season (for many but not all of us) BAHC is planning for Spring and for future activities and initiatives.

Road Survey: Below is a link for a road survey for the bike-ability of Howard County roads. The primary purpose is to identify which roads are unsafe or in poor condition so we can target those with HC Public Works and Highways. We discovered last year that adding shoulders on some roads or modifying existing designs is difficult, but we want the County Government to be aware of our concerns as cyclists.
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=A56raaJ3t6bWIho2WbjsiA_3d_3d

Club representatives please post on your message boards and send link to your listserves. If has difficulty with the survey or just wants to provide a an evaluation of the the 3 worst roads (for recreational cycling or commuting) you can also send information in an e-mail to: ichuck"at"gmail.com

Road Rage: Bill Kelly of the BAHC Board has arranged for Howard County Police Chief Bill McMahon (who is a cyclist) to attend our next Board meeting on Jan 12th. If you have any questions on how to report incidents with drivers or concern for how law enforcement in the County supports cycling please e-mail me (jackguarneri"at"gmail.com). I'll ensure issues are brought up and will provide a post-meeting summary of our discussion.
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T4 America Ready to Go List

Biking in the Metro AreaOne criteria that the traffic folks use to establish need is the dollar amount of non-funded projects. No projects, no need so no funding. Which for cyclists then means no projects because of no funds and the cycle repeats. So with a envious eye on what is happening not that far away (and hopping to get this kind of energy here) here is what's happening in the DC area:
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14-Year-Old Dies After Being Struck By SUV

Biking in the Metro AreaNo Word On If Driver Will Be Charged In Crash

MIDDLE RIVER, Md. -- A 14-year-old boy is dead after being struck by a sport utility vehicle on Friday evening.

Baltimore County Police said that Blaine Sunowitz was riding his bike when he was hit by a Dodge Dakota near the intersection of Martin Boulevard and Middle River Road.

Sunowitz was taken to Franklin Square Hospital for treatment where he later died.

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Maryland should adopt the Idaho stop law.

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The state should support what kind of bicycle facilities?

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