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Friday, December 09 2016 @ 07:45 AM UTC

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101 SMALL WAYS YOU CAN IMPROVE YOUR CITY

Biking Elsewhere-> Curbed shared 101 urban interventions and ideas that show how even the tiniest changes can make our cities better places. They collected small ideas with huge potential to make outsized transformations. Quite a few involve walking or biking: http://bit.ly/2dmEEMX

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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BIKE LANES MORE COST-EFFECTIVE THAN MOST OTHER PREVENTION

Biking Elsewhere-> A recent report published in the Journal of Injury Prevention concluded that "investments in bike lanes are more cost-effective than the majority of preventive approaches used today" and simultaneously address multiple public health problems. (The Cost-effectiveness of Bike Lanes in New York City: http://bit.ly/2dn3qwl) Researchers who looked at cycle infrastructure in New York found that every $1,300 spent on it could equate to an additional quality-adjusted life year, or QALY, for every one of the city’s residents. By contrast, the authors showed that a health treatment like dialysis costs $129,000 for one QALY, while vaccines have a return of one QALY per $100 spent. http://bit.ly/2dn2esQ

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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NEW YORK, NY: BIKE SHARE GETS MORE USE THAN FREE PARKING SPOTS

Biking Elsewhere-> The new bike-share stations in Brooklyn, NY are getting a lot more use than the average free on-street parking space, according to a report of recent Citi Bike data addressed to the Brooklyn Community Board 6. The Board is holding a hearing in response to complaints about bike-share stations replacing curbside car parking. Compared to free on-street car parking, just about every bike-share station is well used. http://bit.ly/2dmQLcF

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Pedestrian-shaming campaigns have got to stop

Biking ElsewhereBy Alissa Walker, Curbed

...
A campaign that launched today is the newest misguided attempt to prevent traffic deaths by shaming pedestrians—not by addressing the root causes of our country’s frightening epidemic: too many drivers using increasingly inadequate infrastructure.
...

http://www.curbed.com/2016/10/28/13455962/pedestrian-shaming-streets-safety-campaigns
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RAISING THE INTEREST AND REDUCING THE CONCERN

Biking ElsewhereBY ALEX PLINE (Annapolis cyclist/advocate), Strong Towns

Contemporary cycling in the United States is largely viewed by the public as a recreational endeavor. However, it was not always this way. For distances greater than those easily covered on foot, bicycles were the preferred mode of local transportation prior to the early 1900s when the automobile came into wider use. During the next half decade, bicycles were seen primarily as children’s toys. The 1970s and 1980s brought a new boom in bicycle sales for adult recreational purposes and this was augmented by the “Lance effect” in the early 2000s, introducing a large number of people to performance cycling.

As a result, most infrastructure built in the latter half of the 20th century was geared around this recreational aspect of cycling—primarily off road paths in parks, “rails to trails” efforts and even mountain bike facilities. It is only in the last 10 years that urban areas have started to look again at bicycles as part of their transportation strategy and to construct suitable infrastructure to implement it. By most measures these efforts have been fairly successful in increasing the numbers of transportation cyclists, but still not to a level of places like the Netherlands where there is upwards of 30% bicycle mode share. The United States will likely never achieve that kind of mode share if for no other reason than our systemic land use issues, but in areas where the land use patterns do support bicycle transportation, we can get to more modest shares like that of Portland (7+%). What actions can be taken take to increase this mode share?
...

http://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2016/10/14/raising-the-interest-and-reducing-the-concern
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How one city went from scrubbing bike lanes to building an entire network in weeks

Biking ElsewhereBY TOM BABIN, Shifter

...
That’s an understatement. Not only had Edmonton sat idly by while cities all over the continent built accommodations for bikes, it was getting worse. Painted lanes were being scrubbed, and the best bike route across the river was worsened by bridge modifications. If the mayor sounded like he was throwing up his hands, what hope did anybody else have?

So how it is that, just a few weeks later, this sprawling northern city, famous for long winters and hockey, is on pace to build a forward-thinking and ambitious network of separated downtown bike lanes? Credit the power of frustration, and some creative thinking.
...

It also has lessons for other cities struggling to get the bike-lane ball rolling. Nobert credits the idea to creative thinking outside of the usual confines of city hall. “We created a situation that seemed impossible or difficult to say no to,” he said. “I credit (a group of city councillors) with showing the leadership and take the political risk, but I believe that the creativity came from without.”

There’s something else unique about the project. Rather than a long public consultation process, in which a litany of public meetings allow people to air their theoretical grievances ahead of time, this project is being built as a pilot project that will be tweaked once in place. The idea is to get the lanes installed in the real world, and then adjust them based on public feedback, rather than the other way around.
...

For Nobert, however, perhaps the most important thing that he learned from the experience is the power of people.

“Citizens need to get engaged,” he said. “Trust that centrally-located residents want to bike and walk places (they do), and use that fact to your advantage. Guerilla is great. Use injury collision data as leverage. Build social media networks, build real relationships. Meet with everyone.

“Citizen groups can make change.”

http://shifter.info/how-one-city-went-from-scrubbing-bike-lanes-to-building-an-entire-network-in-weeks/

[B' Spokes: My take away is let your elected representatives know that you bike and expect more than just platitudes. I would also like to give a shout out to BikeMore, they are doing a wonderful job, the more we support them the better job they can do. And I also want to point out Bike HoCo - Bicycling Advocates of Howard County, they too are doing a exceptional job.

BikeMore: http://www.bikemore.net/
Bike HoCo: https://www.facebook.com/BikeHoCo/

(If you can donate some money or time but above all keep on riding.)]
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POLICY PRIORITIES FROM BIKE/PED PROFESSIONALS

Biking Elsewhereby Caron Whitaker, LAB

The Surveys
The League did two surveys. One was of League members and advocates. Over 4000 advocates representing all 50 states responded to this survey. The other survey was done in conjunction with the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals (APBP). This survey went out to APBP members, including planners, engineers and professional advocates, as well as to Executive Directors and Policy Directors at League organization members. 195 people from 38 states responded. This second survey included detailed questions about specific funding sources and policies.

Here are the lessons learned from the APBP/League Leaders survey.

ON PROGRESS
Practitioners are positive bunch. Overall they report more positive change in their communities than advocates, and are more adamant about it (i.e., more likely to see “a lot” of progress vs. some progress experienced by advocates.)

* Progress on infrastructure is strongest. Close to 90 percent of respondents saw progress on basic infrastructure: sidewalks, trails and on street bike infrastructure; and 80 percent saw progress on connecting bike networks and bike share.
* Progress is slower on driving related issues. Survey respondents gave their lowest ratings to issues of reducing speed limits and in stopping distracted driving. These issues were top concerns for both advocates and practitioners.
...

http://bikeleague.org/content/policy-priorities-bikeped-professionals

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Reality check: Distracted walking isn’t a big problem. (Distracted driving is.)

Biking ElsewhereBy Patrick Cain, Global News

...
In Toronto, pedestrian collisions where the pedestrian was coded as inattentive have fallen since 2005, figures released by the city to Global News show. A report by the city’s medical officer of health showed that only 13 per cent of pedestrians hit in the city were inattentive for any reason.

“The difficulty is, with cars, what they represent, based on their speed, their size, their weight,” Brown says. “If you are handing a weapon, you handle it with care. You can’t have distractions, you can’t have multitasking — you’ve got to have one hundred per cent of your cognitive ability.”
...

http://globalnews.ca/news/2640893/reality-check-distracted-walking-isnt-a-big-problem-distracted-driving-is/
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Bikers already 'pay their fair share' for safer streets

Biking ElsewhereBy RANDY LOBASSO, Metro

...
A lot can go wrong during that process. Especially during the community feedback portion. Oftentimes, those in favor of bike lanes get backlash over wanting something we allegedly don’t pay for. Therefore, the thinking goes, if cyclists want new lanes, they should be taxed and forced to submit to a city licensing program before we even think about installing safety precautions on city streets...
...

American taxpayers as a whole paid $1 trillion more to sustain the road network than people who drive paid in gasoline taxes, tolls and other user fees.” And in 2012, $69 billion in highway spending came from Americans’ general tax revenue.
...

http://touch.metro.us//philadelphia/bikers-already-pay-their-their-fair-share-for-safer-streets/zsJpji---tuopMAO62Jm4c/
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Going deep with regional leaders on using performance measurement

Biking ElsewhereVia Transportation for America

...
“Transportation works as a network and fails as a network,” she said. “So why do people think we can fix the network project by project by project? I’m most interested in what is the best suite of projects.” She went on to describe why data matters, but only if you measure the right things. “You should be asking people what matters to them and measure that. If you don’t, you are telling your customers that what matters to them is unimportant. …Data is only useful if it helps you tell a story or make better decisions.”
...

http://t4america.org/2016/10/14/going-deep-with-regional-leaders-on-using-performance-measurement/
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