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Saturday, February 13 2016 @ 04:28 AM UTC


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Biking Elsewhere-> The U.S. Census is the most widely cited source of data about how Americans get around, but it only asks about commute trips, and commuting only accounts for about 16 percent of total household travel. What happens when you measure the other 84 percent? Researchers at the University of Minnesota set out to design a better way to track how people move around the Twin Cities region.

The UMN team found that driving decreased in the region between 2000 and 2010, while biking and walking grew. Cycling rose over that period from 1.4 to 2.2 percent of trips. Thats about 190,000 daily trips, or a 58 percent increase. Meanwhile, walking grew from 4.5 to 6.6 percent of trips, a 44 percent increase, or almost three quarters of a million daily trips. Residents of the Twin Cities region typically make about 12 million total daily trips. Whats especially interesting is that the share of biking and walking trips in the UMN survey is much bigger than what the Census indicates about two to three times larger. []

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Biking Elsewhere-> It seems that not driving has all sorts of positive health benefits. A recent Canadian study (The Happy Commuter: A Comparison of Commuter Satisfaction across Modes: sorted people by mode of travel walking, biking, driving, bus, intercity train, and intracity metro and found that people who walk, bike, or take the intercity train are more satisfied with their commutes than others.

A 2010 study conducted in Hamilton, Ontario (Enjoyment of Commute: A Comparison of Different Transportation Modes:, found that bikers and walkers were more satisfied with their commutes than anyone else, as did a nationwide Canadian survey (Commuting to Work: Results of the 2010 General Social Survey: done the same year.

A British study (Associations between Active Commuting, Body Fat, and Body Mass Index: Population Based, Cross Sectional Study in the United Kingdom: found that people who walk, bike, or take any form of public transit have lower rates of obesity than people who drive, after controlling for other forms of exercise and socioeconomic factors.

People who walk or bike to work also have lower rates of diabetes (Active Travel to Work and Cardiovascular Risk Factors in the United Kingdom: and cardiovascular disease (Active Commuting and Cardiovascular Disease Risk: [Biking or Walking to Work will Make you Happier and Healthier by Joseph Stromberg:]

Impact of Changes in Mode of Travel to Work on Changes in Body Mass Index Survey: evidence from the British Household Panel ( found that workers who switched from driving to walking, bicycling or taking public transportation had a significant average reduction in body mass index equal to about 2.2 pounds per person. []

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Biking Elsewhere-> Realtors® from across the country gathered today to learn about the importance and benefits of walkable urban communities in real estate development during a panel organized by the REALTOR® University Richard J. Rosenthal Center for Real Estate Studies. Residential walkable communities generate four times the tax revenue compared to regional and business malls, bringing more value to the area, according to panelists. Walkable urban regions in the U.S. have a 41 percent higher Gross Domestic Product over non-walkable regions, said Christopher Leinberger, professor at George Washington University School of Business and president of Locus, a national coalition of real estate developers and investors who advocate for sustainable, walkable urban development in metropolitan areas. [ ]

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Biking Elsewhere-> Recent travel data show that the City of Vancouver's (BC) automobile mode share has declined to about half of all trips (most North American cities have about 80% automobile mode share), offset by growth in walking, cycling and public transit trips. Daily automobile trips declined from 980,000 in 2013 to just 918,000 in 2014, while walking, cycling, and public transit trips rose from 893,000 to 905,000. That puts the alternative modes in a statistical dead heat with automobile trips. The city has already surpassed its long-term target to reduce vehicle trips at least 20 percent by 2040.

The Vancouver region:
* Has 3.9 traffic deaths per 100,000 residents, one of the lowest among North American cities, and despite rapid growth in bicycle travel, crashes involving bicycles have not increased, indicating a declining crash rate.
* Households devote just 12.4 percent of their household budgets to transportation, the least of any North American city
* Rates as one of the worlds most livable cities. [ ]

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Bicycling: The SAFEST Form of Transportation

Biking ElsewhereVia Mr Money Mustache

Of all the objections I get from people about why they can’t ride a bike to get around, perhaps the most frustrating is the claim that bicycling is too dangerous. According to this line of reasoning, we all need the protection of a two-tonne steel cage in order to survive the trip to the office or the grocery store.

Under even the most pessimistic of assumptions:

Net effect of driving a car at 65mph for one hour: Dying 20 minutes sooner. (18 seconds of life lost per mile)
Net effect of riding a bike at 12mph for one hour: Living 2 hours and 36 minutes longer (about 13 minutes of life gained per mile)
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Cyclists use cameras to document reckless driving

Biking ElsewhereHighlight: "Crocker uploaded his video to Close Call Database, where cyclists log incidents involving vehicles. The database catalogs incidents by geography and sends out alerts to users in an area where an incident is reported."
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New device helps police enforce state 3-foot Law

Biking Elsewhere
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AAA Announces Roadside Assistance For Bicyclists

Biking ElsewhereB' Spokes: This is great not just because of the service if you get a flat on your bike but AAA Mid-Atlantic used to be very vocal about their anti-bike position... now they want our business.

Read about it here:
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Don’t make bicyclists more visible. Make drivers stop hitting them

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: While I don't agree with everything in the linked article by Eben Weiss a.k.a. Bike Snob he does make some points to think about. Roads were our first campaign for multi-use paths, they would be good for everyone and we can all share the space, would be one way to paraphrase the Good Roads Movement but then bicyclist became the trespassers on the very roads they helped get built. Ever notice that on our current multi-use paths that if there are rules posted they are only for cyclists and no other users, pedestrians are free to be unpredictable and lawless as are the dog walkers because there is nothing saying you can't walk with your leash crossing the whole path. And most of all, the rights of iPod-zombies must be protected above all else because everyone knows it is cyclists that are scofflaws and no other group. :/

I'm not saying cyclists should not be careful around pedestrians but I am saying everyone needs to watch out for each other but when you single out just one type of user as the trouble maker it all goes down hill fast. And that has been our problem with the so called "Safety Experts" to this day, the total lack of explaining shared space and the movement that is expected from everyone.

But back to the article, there is no doubt the unspoken and hard question to answer is "Why wouldn't cyclist do everything they could to improve their safety? And why shouldn't we make it a law?" First let's flip this to be a car centric example; "Why wont drivers drive with their headlight on during the day if it improves their safety? And why isn't it a legal requirement?" - That's a good question as more lives could be saved doing that then anything we could do with cyclists.

Which brings me to what I feel is a major problem with our society, cars are perceived as safe even though they are the number two cause of premature death just behind smoking. Cars have become the ultimate embodiment of sociopathic behavior as too many things about them could be summarized "As long as I am safe everyone else be damned." Things like going fast has become a priority as if saving a minute is worth killing people over. Statistics were manipulated to promote speed, freeways were deemed safer not because of their grade separated crossings but because of their speed and the same with roads that have a large speed differential it's was the cars going the speed limit (not faster) that were to blame for the increased in accidents, so increase the speed limit is a common recommendation.

Then eliminating delays became a priority to improve speed even though issues like right-on-red with its known dangers to pedestrians was never really studied to see if there was an overall improvement in traffic flow. It used to be traffic was pulsed so turning out of a shopping center on a major road was a simple mater of just waiting for the main platoon of traffic to pass from the traffic light upstream. Nowadays we have to wait for a small gap in the constant traffic diarrhea of people utilizing the right-on-red. So making things "faster" for one person makes things slower for more than one person downstream (more me first and everyone else be dammed.).... and we call this an "improvement" even though general impatience on the road seems to have been multiplied even though impatience has been "accommodated" (in one situation but not others) . Tell me you have never encountered someone turning into traffic that was not taking a risk in the hopes you would stop abruptly while they took advantage of the only gap in traffic they could see. I will assert that right-on-red is indirectly causing more traffic accidents downstream then what we would have if there was no right-on-red (the overall benefit even to just cars is dubious at best.) And then there is the assumption that some how this benefit of turning right on red is cumulative, like we spend our time driving in clockwise circles. Sure there can be a one time ~30 second improvement per trip but that's the best it can be and no better and for that we put pedestrian lives at risk not to mention other things that I have asserted that are not a benefit to society as a whole.

Things like this has lead to the unspoken corollary "Faster modes of travel need to travel faster and slower modes of travel should be made even slower." Like a 350 horse power car is going to have to really struggle to make up a two second delay and other kinds of "people" don't mind five or more minutes of delay. Too many things are ratcheting us in the wrong direction, which is my point here and I think it is also the point in the following article.]
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The Real Danger to Children Is Cars, Not Strangers

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: To ballpark the danger to kids (more info in the article)
115 - Kidnapping by strangers
449 - Children killed when they were walking or biking
2136 - Children killed being chauffeured by car. ]

by Angie Schmitt, Streets Blog

"Why are we building communities that are unsafe for our children? This goes beyond free range vs. helicopter parenting debates. Our infrastructure forces decisions by some parents — and are unhealthy for our children besides!"

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