To ensure the success of this ride One Less Car is seeking volunteers to participate as Route Marshals and Rest stop workers along the Tour du Port route. Benefits of volunteering include a Tour du Port long sleeve shirt, good food, and a fun time!
To register or for more information visit our website <a href="http://www.onelesscar.org/TDP/2008/">www.onelesscar.org/TDP/2008/</a>
This year\\\'s ride will begin at the Canton Waterfront Park at 3001 Boston Street in Southeast Baltimore. The park is located right on the water with a view of the city and the big ships that make the Port work. JOIN US FOR A GREAT DAY IN THE CITY!
AND REMEMBER! All registration fees and t-shirt sales help our effort to get more cars off Maryland\\\'s congested roads and neighborhood streets.
One Less Car, a statewide nonprofit organization that advocates on behalf of bicycling and pedestrian issues, will sponsor a Maryland Bicycle Fall Forum for the first time next month in preparation for the start of the next General Assembly in January.
"It's a cattle call; all the bike clubs will be there – the College Park Area Bicycle Coalition, the Baltimore Bicycling Club, Oxon Hill, Howard County, MoBike (Montgomery Bicycle Advocates), and others," said One Less Car executive director Richard Chambers.
"Anybody who's got a bike and is interested is welcome," he said. "It's a free advocacy event."
The forum, scheduled to run from 6 to 9 p.m. , will take place Oct. 6 in the Parsons Theater at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab in Laurel .
[For more information or to RSVP, please send an email to rchambers"at"onelesscar.org]
Chambers described the forum as a summit of sorts, to talk about upcoming legislation. He said it's an opportunity for bicycling advocates to discuss what the state needs to do to promote safe riding, such as adding bike lanes and racks and connecting trails – all of which makes more bicycle commuting possible.
"Maryland Department of Transportation bike/pedestrian coordinator Stephanie Yanovitz has already committed to being there, and we've invited John Porcari, Maryland 's transportation secretary, highway administration people, and elected officials," Chambers said. "I think we're going to get over 100 people to attend. Obviously, with gas prices, this is an issue that has legs."
Bill Smith of the Frederick Pedalers said bicycle advocates working in different parts of the state benefit by coordinating with each other.
"Many of us know each other via e-mail only," he said. "I've only met in person 10 percent of the advocates statewide. I want to know what is happening in other areas and I want to communicate that to all of the bicyclists in this area."
Smith, who said there are good things happening all over the state and in Frederick for bicyclists, said he wants to ensure that routine accommodations for bicyclists and pedestrians are considered during every part of the legislative and planning process, so that all transportation needs are met, not just those of drivers.
Chambers also confirmed last week that One Less Car now expects to continue its annual fundraising ride, Cycle Across Maryland, after planning to drop sponsorship of the event earlier this summer.
After several years on Maryland 's Eastern Shore , the ride shifted its home base to Mount St. Mary's in Emmitsburg this July. In its 20th anniversary this year, the ride went smoothly and registration jumped 25 percent to more than 500 riders, said Charina Chatman, One Less Car's events coordinator.
"The board has not voted on it yet, but I'm 90 percent sure we're going to go ahead," Chambers said.
One Less Car's largest ride, its annual, noncompetitive "Tour Du Port" trek around the Inner Harbor and Fort McHenry , is expected to attract more than 1,500 cyclists in Baltimore on Oct. 5, the day before the Maryland Fall Bicycle Forum.
Seating for this summit is very limited. Please contact rchambers"at"onelesscar.org if you are interested in attending.
The highlight of the weekend may have been the Friday night awards ceremony which attracted over 300 people. The night was made extra special by the appearance of CAM founder Pat Bernstein, who reminisced about the storied history of the Cycle Across Maryland ride.
After expenses, CAM raised $50,000 for One Less Car's advocacy efforts across the state.
Considering this year's success, the Board of Directors of One Less Car is seriously considering hosting CAM for another year. A decision will be made in the next month. Look for more information and a link to a "CAM pics" page in next month's email update.
So, we need your help. If you are a professional person committed to our cause and any of the following fun-filled tasks is of interest to you, please email Richard Chambers at rchambers"at"onelesscar.org. Although we don't have money to offer you, we do reward good work with large amounts of gratitude and - if you do a really good job - free registrations to Tour du Port!
* Administrative Volunteer - 5-10 hours a week. Handling basic administrative tasks at the One Less Car office at 1209 North Calvert Street in Baltimore.
* Transportation Conference volunteer/Intern - 5-10 hours a week. Assist in the planning of OLC's sustainable transportation conference, set for March 2009. This means administrative work, as well as helping organize our contacts in the planning, public policy and health communities.
* CAM volunteer - help us out with everything from registrations to rest stops during the CAM weekend, July 24-27.
* Tour du Port volunteer - Help us out as a ride marshall, registration assistant or rest stop captain during TDP this October 5th.
Richard Chambers, Executive Director
For me, and many of my friends and family, the answer is yes. Every other day I hear a story of someone I know that is walking, biking or taking mass transit in lieu of driving. Usually it's just a simple matter of changing one or two weekly trips.
The problem is, with the exception of AAA's prediction that Memorial Day car travel will be slightly down, the national statistics are not showing any real drop off in automobile use. Most people seem to think that the vast majority of us are just gritting our teeth and suffering through.
What we need is for the stories of people who are changing their habits to become public. That's where One Less Car comes in. We are starting a new section of our website to collect the stories of people who are refusing to get caught in the car crunch. We want to know if you are biking to work, hopping on the bus to school, or just hoofing it to the grocery store. How does it make you feel to not be strapped inside your car? Are you loosing weight? Saving money? Meeting new people? Spending more time with family and friends? Tell us your story.
We have set up an email address - mystory "at" onelesscar.org - where you can send us your tale of personal rebellion against our car culture. If you have a photo you want to share, send that along too. Our hope is to have these stories online in the coming weeks.
Richard Chambers, Executive Director
With so much attention being directed to the November Special Session, the 2008 Regular Session seemed almost subdued. But One Less Car was in the thick of things, working to ensure better access and more funding for our bicycle, pedestrian and transit networks.
One Less Car's successes this year include the passage of a bill that we assisted in drafting which eliminates the current prohibition on bicycle and pedestrian facilities on state-owned bridges. This means that future and existing bridges can now be built with bike and walking paths. This is a huge win. The advocacy community can now make a confident push for bike/ped accommodations on the new Nice Bridge over the Potomac River, which is now being planned, as well as on the Hattum Bridge over the Susquehanna River, which must be refitted in the near future.
Pop quiz. What's the number one killer of kids in the world?
No. Not the scary murderer on the 11 o'clock news.
Not some disease with a hard to pronounce name.
It's cars. More young people are killed on roads than anywhere else. This is true WORLDWIDE.
In America the numbers are pretty grim. Every day 6 children age 14 and under are killed on U.S. roads, while another 670 are injured. That's 2,200 children dead each year and a staggering 245,000 injured.
Most of this carnage is accidental. But all of it is totally avoidable. Speed is usually the fundamental reason for these deaths. A child hit at 25 mph has a 90 percent chance of surviving. If he is hit at 40 mph his survival rate is less than 10 percent.
This year One Less Car has been doing its best to raise the profile of the road safety issue in Maryland. We supported bills in Annapolis that would have increased the penalties for reckless motorists and we put a lot of effort into passing a requirement that motorists give 3 feet when passing bicycles. Both of these measures failed.
In our opinion these bills would have made Maryland roads a safer place for all users (including motorists). The fact that they failed to make it out of committee is a disgrace. It's disheartening that so many of our elected representatives seem so ignorant of how dangerous our car culture has really become.
As the weather gets warmer and more of us are out walking and biking give some consideration to how you would make the case for safer roads to your state delegate or senator. Think about your neighborhood and how much better it would be with fewer and slower cars. Do you think you could make your elected representatives listen? We'll need your voice during the next General Assembly session.
Meanwhile, take a look at the website of the Make Roads Safe Campaign <a href="http://www.makeroadssafe.org/">http://www.makeroadssafe.org/</a> . They are tackling the problem on a global scale. If you have time, please sign their petition for safer roads in developing countries. Every name helps.
Richard Chambers, Executive Director