#214 Thursday, November 13, 2008
CenterLines is the bi-weekly e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking. CenterLines is our way of quickly delivering news and information you can use to create more walkable and bicycle-friendly communities.
-> The Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals (APBP) and the National Center for Bicycling & Walking (NCBW) have announced "Bring SmartTrips Home" as the topic for the December installment of their Professional Development Series webinars.
The SmartTrips webinar will take place at 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. EST, December 17th. Linda Ginenthal directs Portland, Oregon's successful SmartTrips program, which uses individualized marketing to change trip behavior. The Transportation Options Division of the Portland Office of Transportation initially targeted the downtown district and employers. Portland also applied the model to a high crash area, modifying the name to SafeTrips in that setting. (A case study concerning Portland's SmartTrips program prepared by Ms. Ginenthal won a 2007 Best Case Study award from the APBP, and is available on the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center website at http://tinyurl.com/5cnpzw )
Jessica Roberts of Alta Planning and Design is taking Portland's SmartTrips program on the road; working most intensely with two communities funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Non-Motorized Transportation Pilot Program (NTPP). Jessica will share insights about modifying Portland's program to other locales.
SmartTrips is gaining momentum nationally and internationally. Be on the cutting edge! Learn about SmartTrips today and then begin planning your own SmartTrips program! The high energy team of Ms. Ginenthal and Ms. Roberts wowed a packed audience at Pro Walk / Pro Bike 2008 in Seattle. You must see this webinar! Registration opens Tuesday, November 18th. Go to:
(Note: due to a technical problem, the November webinar, Cycle Zone Analysis, has been rescheduled for January 2009).
-> According to a Nov. 6th FietsBeraad news article, "The Velib bicycle rental system that has been operating in Lyon as well as Paris for several years now, is also attractive for people in public transport. Quite a number of those passengers use a bicycle on their way to or from public transport.
"This is apparent from a survey of 1000 users of the Velib system, conducted in 2006 and 2007 by public transport authorities in Lyon. The survey shows that some 30% of users travel in a multimodal way. At the start of their journey 14% use another transport modality and 16% at the end of their journey..."
-> A new browser-based presentation, "Barriers to Walking: What You're Up Against," has been posted on the Active Living Resource Center (ALRC) web site. This 10-minute audio-visual presentation describes some of the barriers that block people of all ages from being more active. "In our Walkable Community Workshop series, we use "walkabouts" to show community members how to develop a 'new way of seeing' when looking for these barriers," said Gary MacFadden, senior program director for the National Center for Bicycling & Walking (NCBW). "It's easy to look right past conditions that might stop a child from walking to a neighborhood school, or a senior citizen from using a nearby bus stop. This new on-line presentation looks at some of those potential barriers we've spotted during our walkabouts."
The ALRC browser-based presentations are designed to be used on-line. CenterLines subscribers are encouraged to share the links to these short presentations with neighborhood residents, elected officials, and others interested in making communities more active.
To view "Barriers to Walking," click the associated link on this page:
-> A recent announcement from AARP and the Lifelong Fitness Alliance asked, "Are you passionate about helping others stay fit? If you can make a personal commitment to improve fitness for mid-life and older adults then the Lifelong Fitness Ambassadors Team wants you! Established by Lifelong Fitness Alliance, the Fitness Ambassador Team believes that peer encouragement is the strongest catalyst for people to engage in physical activity. Fitness Ambassadors may work with existing organizations that serve adults or they may organize their own weekly or periodic activities or focus on the 'Stepping Strong program.' Fitness Ambassadors also encourage physicians to promote increased physical activity among their patients.
"Fitness Ambassadors provide information, opportunity and incentive to older adults in their communities to get and stay fit. Being a world-class athlete is certainly not a prerequisite for being a Lifelong Fitness Ambassador. Fitness Ambassadors are everyday people simply passionate about helping people stay as fit and well as possible. A Fitness Ambassador could be your brother who only recently took up walking, the woman who delivers Meals on Wheels, the person who lives next door, your priest or rabbi…or it could be you!"
For more information, contact <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
-> According to an article in the Nov. 6th Safe Routes to School E-News, "Earlier this year, Senator Barack Obama met in Chicago with board and staff members of Bikes Belong -- the Partnership's parent organization. Mr. Obama told the bike group's leaders that if elected president, he would support funding for bicycling, walking and Safe Routes to School in the next federal transportation bill.
"That same week, Mr. Obama celebrated his consolidation of the Democratic Presidential nomination by riding bikes with his two young daughters in a Chicago park. The Safe Routes to School National Partnership will now work closely with Bikes Belong and the America Bikes coalition to ensure that the new Obama administration is fully briefed on the tangible benefits and significant progress of Safe Routes to School programs as they prepare their legislative agenda."
-> "The Transportation Research Board's 88th Annual meeting will draw more than 10,000 transportation policy makers, administrators, practitioners, researchers, and representatives of government, industry, and academic institutions to Washington D.C. January 11-15, 2009. Plan now to attend the premiere transportation event of the year. If you are registered, please forward this information and encourage your colleagues to register today. Hurry! Reduced Meeting Fees Available Through November 30.
For more info on the annual meeting, go to: http://tinyurl.com/6raq3b
-> In their Nov. 12th newsletter, the LivableStreets Alliance urged readers to sign a Transportation for America petition to the President Elect to live up to his promise to back Smart Transportation. As TforA says, "Smart transportation infrastructure investment will strengthen our economy, create jobs, reduce our dependence on oil, and make it easier for Americans to find the money to meet their growing transportation needs. But we need President-elect Obama to make building that 21st Century transportation system a priority in his first 100 days."
To read (and sign!) the petition, go to:
-> According to the Nov. 12th SLO County Bicycle Coalition newsletter, "We're happy to hear the news that the state awarded $890,000 to fund construction of a new section of the Railroad Bicycle Trail. The Bicycle Coalition was pleased to help the City of SLO on this grant application from the Bicycle Transportation Account, which funds bicycle projects throughout the state of California. The grant will fund a section of the trail from the Amtrak train station to Marsh St. Competition was especially keen this year with applications from around the state totaling over $26.5 million of which only $7.2 million could be funded.
"Out of the 19 projects, the Railroad Bicycle Trail was among the top four with the highest level of funding. This is the third consecutive grant from the BTA awarded in as many years for the Railroad Bicycle Trail. As far as we've been able to tell, it is the first time that the BTA has been awarded to a project three years in a row. The success of the grant shows just how important it is to finish the Railroad Bicycle Trail, which will offer a wonderful way to ride from Cal Poly to downtown to the southern city limit without having to use busy streets or content with steep hills."
-> According to a Nov. 10th FietsBeraad news article, "[Massachusetts Institute of Technology] researchers unveiled a major new project in Copenhagen aimed at transforming bicycle use in Denmark's largest city, promoting urban sustainability and building new connections between the city's cyclists. The project, called SmartBiking, will utilize a novel self-organizing smart-tag system that will allow the city's residents to exchange basic information and share their relative positioning with each other. The project will be implemented citywide in time for the November 2009 U.N. Climate Change Conference, which Copenhagen will host.
"'One of the most striking aspects of Copenhagen is that it is already a very sustainable city,' said Carlo Ratti, Director of MIT's SENSEable City Lab, which is overseeing the Smart Biking project. 'A considerable fraction of its energy comes from renewable sources and, unlike a few decades ago, 30 to 40 percent of its citizens use bicycles as their primary method of transportation. So our challenge was, How can we enhance these dynamics of sustainability? And how can we use technology to make them more widespread?'..."
-> According to an article in the Nov. 9th International Bicycle Fund's newsletter, "A new Student Bicycle Essay Contest has begun. All students, worldwide, 16 years old and under, are eligible to enter of 'Bicycle Essay Contest.' The deadline is May 1st. Please share this information with teachers, parents and students in your circles."
-> According to an article in the Nov. 11th Activate Martinsville Henry County newsletter, "Forty-eight year old, Barbara Thompson thanked Activate for changing her life. After losing her job, Thompson was uninspired to do anything that she didn't have to do. 'I was gaining weight and my cholesterol and blood pressure was high. I knew I needed to do something but didn't want to do it alone." Thompson began attending Activate and Henry County Bike Club events. Five months later, Thompson's blood pressure and cholesterol are both lower and her medication has been cut in half.
"'I have met some terrific people and made some really wonderful friends. They lifted me up, encouraged me and provided the drive to want to better myself. I am walking regularly now and have started biking. If you told me months ago that I would be on a bike riding with traffic in Uptown, I would call you crazy. To have the wind in your face and friends by your side -- it is a feeling that will stay with me for a lifetime.'"
For more on the organization and its work (or to subscribe to the newsletter), go to: http://tinyurl.com/6c42z9
-> According to an article in the Nov. 12th Complete Streets News, "A recent lecture given by bicycle and pedestrian expert Dan Burden is available online.* He focuses on sustainable transportation solutions, drawing upon examples from Vancouver, BC, and sits down for a Q&A session with his host in San Jose, CA. The full program is about an hour, but can be watched in chapters, including one on complete streets."
-> According to the Nov. 12th Daily Grist newsletter, "Overall, more than 70 percent of the major public-transit projects that appeared on ballots in the United States on Nov. 4 were approved, according to the mass-transit group Center for Transportation Excellence. Some of the more notable projects approved by voters were a high-speed rail network in California and $18 billion in public-transit improvements in the Seattle area.
STATE DOTS AWARD 80 PERCENT OF SAFE ROUTES $$
"Safe Routes to School funding was made available through the transportation legislation (SAFETEA-LU), passed in 2005. Funding is distributed to individual states by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration. State DOTs then award the funds to local communities. Each state works within its own guidelines, and within Federal rules, to award funds in a competitive process -- with some states receiving hundreds of applications for a limited amount of available funds..."
-> According to an article in the Nov. 7th AASHTO Journal, "Transportation leaders warmly received Illinois Sen. Barack Obama's election as the nation's 44th president Tuesday, expressing hope that the new administration will be receptive to the great need to increase investment in the nation's roads, bridges, transit lines, airports, railroads, and other transport facilities.
"'We encourage President-elect Obama to seek out a bipartisan consensus and develop an ambitious agenda that recognizes transportation's role in making America a better, safer, and more prosperous place,' John Horsley, executive director of the American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials, said in a statement issued Wednesday.
"'We look forward to working with the new president and his administration to improve the nation's transportation program. AASHTO supports reform, including performance-based policies that stress accountability and set priorities based on the needs of the people served by our state departments of transportation.'..."
-> According to an article in the Nov. 11th edition of the Transportation Research Board's e-newsletter, "TRB will conduct a web briefing or 'Webinar' on Tuesday, November 25, 2008, from 2:00 p.m. -- 3:30 p.m. EDT, that will explore treatments and guidance on reducing vehicle speeds to high-speed intersections with approach speeds of 45 mph or more. The webinar is based on National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Report 613: Guidelines for Selecting Speed Reduction Treatments at High-Speed Intersections, which is designed to assist roadway planners, designers, and operators in considering and selecting appropriate speed reduction treatments at intersections located in high-speed environments. Participants must register at least 24 hours in advance of the start of the Webinar, space is limited, and there is a fee for non-TRB Sponsor employees..."
QUOTES R US
-> "If we are going to solve our energy problems, we've got to think long-term… It's time that the entire country learn from what's happening right here in Portland with mass transit and bicycle lanes and funding alternative means of transportation. That's the kind of solution we need for America..."
-> "Many of us gain 15 or more pounds in our early adult years, but people who live with a partner often gain more. Within five years, newly married women gain an average of 24 pounds, and men gain an average of 30 pounds, according to a study presented at the Obesity Society annual scientific meeting."
-> "In North America, [roadside] memorials originated in the U.S. Southwest with roots in Hispanic culture, Catholicism and funerary rites dating back more than 200 years."
-> "Years ago I attended a planning commission meeting that spent an entire evening discussing lawn ornaments such as pink plastic flamingos for a multi-million-dollar resort. As I looked at the planning director's expression, I had to wonder if behind that Mona Lisa smile there was this little voice saying 'So this is the result of hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars of planning, coordination, and negotiation?'"
-> According to a Nov. 6th Minnesota Public Radio story, "Rep. Jim Oberstar, D-Minn., said it's unlikely he would accept an offer to serve as U.S. Secretary of Transportation. But the eighth district Democrat is stopping short of saying he'd turn down the job. Oberstar Chairs the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. Some pundits suggest he could be near the top of the list for Transportation Secretary in an Obama administration..."
-> According to a Nov. 13th Spectator article, "UW-Eau Claire staff said a dramatic increase in bicycle use this semester has made it challenging to keep up with the demand for parking. Facilities Planning and Management's buildings and grounds supervisor Randy Palmer said he has never seen so many people biking to campus in his 22 years of working for the university. Junior Aja Wagnitz said she bikes to campus almost every day just because it's quicker than walking and easier to find parking than with a car.
"Wagnitz said she's never had an issue with finding a rack to lock her bike and doesn't know why other students have resorted to locking their bikes to trees and signposts. 'These extra bike racks work just fine," she said, pointing to one of the temporary racks that she uses outside of Hibbard Hall. Palmer said there are 36 bike racks on campus, for a total capacity of 1,330 bicycles. They added temporary racks east of Sutherland Hall, west of Hibbard Hall and east of Haas Fine Arts this semester. 'We're trying to get this under control,' he said. 'Unfortunately, it's come at a time when our budget is squeezed really hard.'..."
-> According to a Nov. 6th HealthDay News article, "Health inequalities between rich and poor people are much lower in areas that have lots of green space, such as parks, forests and playing fields, a large British study finds. Dr. Richard Mitchell, of the University of Glasgow, and his colleagues noted that previous studies have shown that the presence of green space has an independent beneficial effect on health and health-related behaviors. They wanted to examine whether access to green space might also affect income-related health disparities.
"Mitchell and his team looked at the almost 41 million people in England below retirement age and obtained individual death records for 366,348 people to determine the association between exposure to green space, income, all-cause mortality, and cause-specific death (circulatory disease, lung cancer and suicide) from 2001 to 2005. In areas with the most green space, the health gap between the richest and poorest people was about half as large as that in the least green areas -- an incident rate ratio (IRR) of 1.93 in the least green and 1.43 in the most green. IRR is a measure of how much higher the rate of death is among the poorest, when compared with that among the richest..."
via Grist: http://tinyurl.com/5j3nmb
-> According to a Nov. 13th PerthNow article, "Queensland fat cats will be pounding up the stairs at government offices in a new fitness plan announced by Premier Anna Bligh. Under the plan, desk-bound bureaucrats will be given the opportunity to walk off unwanted weight by taking the stairs instead of the lift. 'It is well known that a healthier lifestyle begins with the first step,' Ms Bligh told State Parliament today.
"'So starting with a six-month trial early next year, the first step will be to open up the stairwells to the employees working in the Executive Building at 100 George Street. These stairwells will be open for these employees to access their work space in preference to the lift.' Ms Bligh said the Executive Building, where her own office is, would be the first of the 13 government-owned CBD office buildings -- home to 13,000 public servant -- to join the plan..."
-> According to a Nov. 12th Daily Times article, "Pedestrian crosswalks, bicycle lanes, more pedestrian friendly sidewalks, additional connections to the Greenway and gateways to Maryville were among suggestions made at a Complete Streets meeting Monday night on the South Hall Road and Washington Street corridor. Complete Streets refers to the movement to accommodate all forms of transportation comfortably -- vehicles, bicyclists, pedestrians and bus riders, said Marshal Elizer of Gresham and Smith. Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) funded the project by consultants Gresham Smith of Nashville to come up with a Complete Streets prototype for the entire state.
"There is no money available from Maryville, Alcoa or TDOT for construction of the project. Instead, Complete Streets ideas can be incorporated into new development as it occurs, About 30 people turned out Monday night for a workshop on the Complete Streets project for the corridor that cuts through Maryville to the south and Alcoa to the north. The workshop was hosted by the Center for Strong Communities at Maryville College. The study is a project of the Tennessee Metropolitan Planning Organization. Another area being studied for Complete Streets is the Fountain City portion of Broadway in Knox County..."
-> According to a Nov. 7th Boston Glube article, "When a drowsy driver starts resorting to turning up the car radio and cracking the window to try to stay awake, it is a sign that the motorist should not be behind the wheel, a researcher yesterday told a state committee considering whether to beef up laws to address the dangers of falling asleep on the road. 'People see them as a counter-measure to stay awake when really they are another way of causing an accident,' Clare Anderson, a sleep specialist who teaches at Harvard Medical School, told a special commission on drowsy driving yesterday. Drowsy drivers, whose response times already are slowed, she said, are more likely to be impaired by distractions in their cars.
"The state began investigating drowsy driving after Major Robert Raneri, an Army reservist, was killed when the motorcycle he was riding collided with a car driven by a sleep-deprived 19-year-old in Pepperell in 2002. The panel, chaired by Senator Richard T. Moore, an Uxbridge Democrat, is considering whether to press for legislation to increase penalties for drivers who cause accidents while sleep-deprived and to educate the public about drowsy driving. It also is looking into whether the state ought to require broad screening of truck drivers and school bus drivers to identify people at higher risk of sleep apnea, a disorder linked to increased drowsiness..."
-> According to a Nov. 8th News article, "The Detroit Department of Transportation is set to receive more than $500,000 in federal money to install bike racks on the fronts of all city buses. The DDOT bus fleet would follow other local bus lines in installing bike racks under the buses' windshields. The intent is to extend travel options for bus riders, especially those without easy and affordable access to cars. 'This is definitely something we've urged DDOT to do for a number of years to increase the usability for their service,' said Megan Owens, executive director of the advocacy group Transportation Riders United. 'It really expands the area people can get to.'
"The $680,000 project would be paid for by $528,000 in federal funds and a $151,000 match from DDOT, according to the Michigan Department of Transportation. Until the money is in hand, DDOT officials won't say how long it will take to fit its 472 buses. In September, DDOT began a pilot program and installed $1,200 racks on six buses that run along the No. 40 Russell line. Officials of SMART -- the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation -- said racks they installed on all routes in 2004 have expanded ridership..."
-> According to a Nov. 11th County News article, "For the second year in a row, Waseca's Central Intermediate School is applying for a Safe Routes to School grant through the Minnesota Department of Transportation. Though CIS did not receive the grant last year, principal Patrick Glynn said that this year he's more optimistic about the school being funded. 'We had gotten some feedback from the state, and have made a few improvements that we believe are going to help,' he said. 'There were too many applications and not enough money to distribute, and when they started to analyze the applications, our application had a few components that needed to be changed. I feel more confident about it this year than I did last year.'
"Glynn said that last year was the first time CIS applied for a grant with such a high dollar amount: $170,000, to be exact. 'It's certainly been a learning experience,' he said. In the Waseca City Council meeting last Monday night, the city of Waseca endorsed the grant and expressed their support for CIS pursuing it. The city will act as a fiscal agent if CIS is awarded the grant. Glynn also visited the Waseca School Board during their Thursday morning meeting last week, in which he shared more-detailed information about the grant proposal. 'It's a program focused on increasing the number of students walking and biking to school,' Glynn said. 'It's funding infrastructure safety in order to make that happen.'..."
-> According to a Nov. 11th WebMD Health News article, "At a time when obesity among children has reached epidemic levels, researchers report that the neck arteries of obese children and teens may have as much plaque buildup as 40-somethings. The blood vessels of obese youngsters age more rapidly than those of their normal-weight counterparts -- raising their risk of developing heart disease at an earlier age, says Geetha Raghuveer, MD, a cardiologist at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City.
"'As the saying goes, "you're as old as your arteries,"' she tells WebMD. 'The state of the blood vessels' arteries is more important than your chronological age when it comes to the development of heart disease and stroke.' The research was presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Raghuveer and colleagues studied 70 children and teens aged 6 to 19. They were all at high risk for future heart problems because they had high cholesterol levels and/or were obese, or because they had inherited a form of high cholesterol known as familial hypercholesterolemia..."
-> According to a Nov. 12th Western Michigan Business Review article, "Brad Rottshafer formed his idea for a green mixed-use development in Grand Rapids before the financial crisis, before the housing bust. He broke ground last November on the $30 million Celadon, spanning 22 acres at Knapp and Leffingwell. He called it an example of new urbanism -- a sustainable, walkable community with detail in every part of its design. As of this November, banks have seized record numbers of homes in Michigan and developers have stalled residential and commercial projects as demand and available capital wane. But, surprisingly perhaps, Celadon is selling in all its property types, from retail to residential, Rottshafer says.
"'Three of the four units are sold,' he says, walking across new sidewalks to the shell of a retail building on Knapp Avenue, about 10 minutes from downtown. Inside, workers finish the interior of a new wine bar, the Crushed Grape. The two-story, locally owned establishment is set to open next month, and Rottshafer is in negotiations with the owner of a coffee shop interested in the spot next door. Just beyond the retail building, an office structure rises two stories -- the future home of Rottshafer's Mosaic Properties. His development company will inhabit 2,000 square feet upstairs, with a balcony overlooking Celadon, which also will include townhouses, row houses and single-family homes. Several are under construction now..."
-> According to an Oct. 30th Times blog entry, "Based on figures from an annual count of bicyclists conducted since 1984, the New York City Department of Transportation announced on Thursday that commuter cycling rose a remarkable 35 percent between 2007 and 2008. The data* are suggestive, not definitive, but officials said they considered the trend to be genuine. The annual count, known as a screenline count, was first conducted in 1980 and has been done annually since 1984.
"This year's count identified 12,583, up from 9,327 in the previous year. The counts were historically taken once a year, during the middle of the week for a 12-hour period, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Last year, the Department of Transportation expanded the time window to 18 hours and added two additional counting dates to add more robustness to the sample. (The count was adjusted to allow for a year-to-year comparison.)..."
-> According to a Nov. 13th News-Press article, "Toll Middle School parents again called on the City Council on Wednesday to step up the city's police presence on Glenwood Road where 11-year-old student Meri Nalbandyan was struck and killed Oct. 29 while using the cross walk. Parents and board members of the school's PTA said assigning a police patrol to the area of Glenwood Road that fronts three schools -- Keppel Elementary, Toll Middle and Hoover High schools -- between 7:45 and 8:15 a.m. would cause a interim shift in driving and pedestrian habits until a more comprehensive safety enhancement plan is settled on.
They also asked for more crossing guards to assist the thousands of students who cross the street each day to and from school. 'I am confident that you will do everything and anything to safeguard our children,' Ed Nazarian, whose two children attend Keppel Elementary, told the City Council on Wednesday. 'But I plead with you...to do it in a speedy way.' Meri, a sixth-grader at Toll Middle School, was struck and killed two weeks ago as she attempted to use a Glenwood crosswalk by a parent who had just dropped of her own child moments earlier..."
-> According to a Nov. 13th Independent Florida Alligator article, "A bicycle trail connecting UF and Haile Plantation could provide a faster and safer alternative to sidewalks and busy streets. The trail would start at UF, curving around parts of Lake Alice, before following power lines west to Southwest Gainesville past Interstate 75, north of Lake Kanapaha and Haile Plantation.
The Alachua County Growth Management Department will present an overview of the trail at a workshop on Monday that will also explain the county’s overall plan to improve transportation. It will be at Haile Plantation, 5100 S.W. 91st Terrace, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Although bicycle commuters can already get between Haile Plantation and UF using bicycle lanes and sidewalks, the trail would be a safer and quicker route, said Jonathan Paul, the concurrency and impact fee manager for Alachua County Growth Management. Although other trails are used for recreation, the Archer Braid Trail is intended to specifically target commuters, he said..."
-> According to a Nov. 13th Herald article, "Brentwood Village is an oxymoron. It is no quaint urban or country community, but rather a strip mall next to a major thoroughfare. Navigating it has got to be as bad as spinning in Dante's seven circles of Hell (although I hope to never actually find out). I do my best to stay away from such shopping experiences, which pit man against vehicle and drive those of us who are directionally challenged over the bend. Urban villages, on the other hand, are pedestrian-friendly, vibrant and functional neighbourhoods. They're full of colour, character and characters. Yet, the residents near Brentwood Village can't envision how the planned transit-oriented development will be better for their area than the status quo.
"Meanwhile, the city is failing in its responsibility to help them see, pulling a no-show at a recent, lively community meeting. Residents mistakenly fear they will lose their beloved shopping centre to ugly high-rises and office towers if the redevelopment plan goes ahead. 'They want to parachute downtown Calgary into Brentwood,' Craig Maxie said earlier this week. 'If we wanted to, we'd live in downtown.' But density means walk-ups and townhouses, as well. It doesn't have to be high-rises, although the plan does call for several, near the transit station and away from the residential houses. Maxie is not alone in his thinking. Some 250 people attended a meeting denouncing the redevelopment plans, expected to double the community's current population in the next few decades..."
-> A Nov. 11th USA Today article suggests, "Imagine a bicycle seat connected by mechanical frames to a pair of shoes for an idea of how the new wearable assisted-walking gadget from Honda works. The experimental device, unveiled Friday, is designed to support bodyweight, reduce stress on the knees and help people get up steps and stay in crouching positions. Honda envisions the device being used by workers at auto or other factories. It showed a video of Honda employees wearing the device and bending to peer underneath vehicles on an assembly line. Engineer Jun Ashihara also said the machine is useful for people standing in long lines and for people who run around to make deliveries.
"'This should be as easy to use as a bicycle,' Ashihara said at Honda's Tokyo headquarters. 'It reduces stress, and you should feel less tired.' To wear it, you put the seat between your legs, put on the shoes and push the on button. Then just start walking around. In a test-run for media, this reporter found it does take some getting used to. But I could sense how it supported my moves, pushing up on my bottom when I squatted and pushing at my soles to help lift my legs when I walked..."
-> According to a Nov. 12th Daily Inter Lake article, "The Flathead County Parks and Recreation Board is developing a countywide system of nonmotorized pathways to connect all the major population centers to each other, as well as Flathead Lake, Glacier National Park, Flathead National Forest and state and county parks. The pathway system will include on-street pedestrian and bicycle routes as well as separate off-street pathways, according to a news release from the board.
"An advisory committee -- People for Athletics, Travel, Health and Safety -- has been formed and charged with the task of developing a long-range master plan for county trails. The committee has developed preliminary goals and met with representatives from state and federal agencies, county departments, municipalities and other interested groups. Base maps have been created, and some trails have been proposed to stimulate discussion. PATHS is planning four community workshops in November to solicit ideas and comments from the public, which will be used to guide the committee's work. Johanna Bangeman is the chairwoman of the committee..."
-> According to a Nov. 8th Toronto Globe and Mail article, "The piles of notes and flowers left at the scenes of fatal car crashes can actually make drivers more cautious, a researcher finds. They are roadside references to accidental death that just might end up inspiring passing drivers to lifesaving caution behind the wheel. A road-safety expert at the University of Calgary has released a study on how roadside memorials -- the clusters of flowers, crosses, and photos that mark sudden tragic death in accidents -- affect traffic. Richard Tay set up fake memorials at four intersections with red-light cameras in Calgary, then monitored how the memorials affected traffic.
Prof. Tay, who holds the Alberta Motor Association Chair in Road Safety at the Schulich School of Engineering, found that about 17 per cent fewer drivers ran red lights at the target intersections over the six weeks of the test than in the previous six weeks. 'In terms of safety, these things have a positive benefit,' he said in an interview yesterday. 'They give us a safety message to drive more cautiously.' More than 60 per cent of 810 respondents to an online survey supported municipal policies that allow the memorials, although about half said time limits should be imposed on how long they could remain in place..."
AND NOW, FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT...
ANTS HAVE A SIMPLE SOLUTION TO TRAFFIC CONGESTION
-> "Ants seem to have cracked a problem we humans haven't. While our cars get clogged in jams, ants help each other to move around their colony much more efficiently. Understanding how they do this could inspire more effective routing of road traffic.
"Collective intelligence expert Dirk Helbing from the Dresden University of Technology in Germany and his team investigated how ants move around their colony. They set up an ant highway with two routes of different widths from the nest to some sugar syrup. Unsurprisingly, the narrower route soon became congested.
"But when an ant returning along the congested route to the nest collided with another ant just starting out, the returning ant pushed the newcomer onto the other path. However, if the returning ant had enjoyed a trouble-free journey, it did not redirect the newcomer..."
CHINA TO RICH POLLUTING NATIONS: CHANGE LIFESTYLE
-> STUDY: BELLY FAT DOUBLES DEATH RISK
-> "MULTI-MODAL TRANSPORTATION PLANNING..."
-> "NATIONAL STUDY ON CARLESS AND SPECIAL NEEDS..."
-> "SUSTAINABLE MOUNTAIN BIKING: A CASE STUDY FROM THE..."
-> "DESIGNING AND PLANNING FOR PLAY"
-> "SNOW REMOVAL ON SIDEWALKS CONSTRUCTED WITH FEDERAL FUNDING"
-> "BIKE-PEDESTRIAN-ONLY ROUNDABOUTS"
-> "GUIDE SPECIFICATIONS FOR DESIGN OF FRP PEDESTRIAN...
-> "SAFE AND AESTHETIC DESIGN OF URBAN ROADSIDE TREATMENTS"
-> "12-FOR-1 PARKING: BIKE CORRALS"
-> "SMALL STEPS LARGE REWARDS..."
-> "ACTIVE & SAFE ROUTES TO SCHOOL RESOURCE GUIDE"
-> "BIKE TO WORK WEEK: A CASE STUDY IN..."
opportunities are available on the National Center for Bicycling &
Walking web site. Add your own items to the on-line calendar...it's quick
and easy. Please be sure your calendar items pertain to training and workshops
in the bicycle, pedestrian, or livable community fields. Go to:
HEY, YOU! SEND US YOUR CALENDAR ITEMS -- PRONTO!
-> November 13-14, 2008, "Expanding Our Constituencies" Workshop, Little Rock, AR. Info:
-> November 16, 2008, Dead Freeways Ride, Portland, OR. Info:
-> December 2-3, 2008, Implementing a Sidewalk Management System, Madison (WI). Info:
-> December 4-5, 2008, Solving Neighborhood Traffic Problems, Madison (WI). Info:
-> January 22-24, 2009, 8th Annual New Partners for Smart Growth, Albuquerque, NM. Info: http://tinyurl.com/6mlrmr
-> March 15-20, 2009, PTBA Conference, Asheville NC. Info: Michael Passo
-> April 22-25, 2009, 14th International Conference on Urban Planning, Regional Development and Information Society, Sitges (Spain / Catalonia). Info:
-> May 12-15, 2009, Velo-City 2009, Brussels, Belgium. Info:
-> June 5-7, 2009, 7th International Conference on Diet and Activity Methods, Washington, DC. Info:
-> September 15-16, 2009, Research to Practice Symposium Promoting Environmental and Policy Change to Support Healthy Aging, Chapel Hill, NC. Information and updates will be available at:
JOBS, GRANTS, AND RFPS
-> JOB -- COMMUTE PROGRAMS DIRECTOR -- CASCADE BICYCLE CLUB
Cascade Bicycle Club (CBC), a Seattle-based organization with 10,000 members, is dedicated to building a better community through bicycling. The Club is a local, regional, and state-wide leader in bicycle and transportation advocacy and provides bicycle commuting programming and youth and adult safety education and training.
Position Goals Cascade desires to increase its support of bicycle commuting by (a) integrating current commute oriented activities and events into a cohesive program; (b) expanding current programmatic and network reach into the business community; (c) expanding work with governmental agencies involved in transportation issues; and (d) incorporating our advocacy and education efforts into our commute programs. The Director of Commute Programs is charged with drafting and realizing these larger strategic goals as well as overseeing day-to-day operations of our Commute Programs Department.
For a full job description with qualifications and application information, go to:
-> RFP -- UNDERSERVED POPULATIONS PROJECT -- TRB
The Transportation Research Board's National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) has released a request for proposals to develop a practical and easy-to-use toolkit of best practices that practitioners can use to involve traditionally underserved populations, particularly minority, low-income, limited English proficiency, and low literacy groups, in transportation decision-making. Proposals Due December 17, 2008..."
Go to: http://tinyurl.com/6qx9nj
-> JOB -- EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR -- BICYCLE FEDERATION OF WI
The Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin (BFW) is looking for a dynamic, take-charge Executive Director to lead the organization in its mission to make Wisconsin an even better place to bicycle. This is a full-time professional position located in Madison, Wisconsin - a gold level bicycle friendly city in the state that has been ranked as the second most bicycle friendly state in America. The immediate goal of the BFW is to make Wisconsin the top ranked bicycle friendly state.
The executive director will be responsible for hands-on management of a staff of eight permanent full-time equivalent positions based in offices in Madison and Milwaukee and for direction of the business operations of the BFW. With a projected surplus of about $100,000 in 2008, the BFW has a solid financial foundation and the support of bicyclists and the bicycle industry located in Wisconsin. It is an expanding organization with unlimited potential. The Board of Directors is recruiting candidates who want to serve as executive director of one of the premier bicycle advocacy and education groups in the nation.
For the full job description and application instructions, go to: http://tinyurl.com/5qr2wn
-> JOB -- PROGRAM MANAGER FOR SAFETY -- AASHTO
More info: http://tinyurl.com/5jye75
-> INTERNSHIP -- COMMUNICATIONS INTERN -- THUNDERHEAD ALLIANCE
Thunderhead Alliance for Biking and Walking is seeking a Communications Intern to help implement our communications strategy and rebranding project. This person will help shape and style the Alliance's online and print communications. This position will involve creative and engaging tasks that might include writing for and designing communication pieces, expanding our communications and networking channels, and developing marketing materials.
This person must have excellent writing skills. Graphic design skills are a plus. The position is not paid, but we are happy to work with any academic requirements to help an intern earn course credit for their work. Applications are due by November 30th.
For more details or to apply, go to:
-> JOB -- PROJECT COORDINATOR -- WALKSANDIEGO
WalkSanDiego has a vacancy for a full-time Project Coordinator. The primary role of the Project Coordinator is delivering and managing community projects effectively, ensuring they are delivered on time, on budget and to agreed quality standards. The Project Coordinator will work under the supervision of the Program Manager and works closely with community groups and neighborhood organizations in the community, and with public officials and decision makers in local government.
Complete description and application: http://tinyurl.com/4yoazs
-> COMPETITION -- NEXT GENERATION DESIGN -- METROPOLIS MAG.
Call for Entries - Win $10,000
Rising energy costs present new design problems. Redesign the broken models of the 20th century. Challenge our patterns of living and working in a fuel-hungry world…come up with solutions that connect us, make us more efficient, more humane.
Focus on one area that needs fixing—products, interiors, buildings and landscape, communication systems, or anything else you can imagine—and develop your idea fully. Open to all designers in practice 10 years or less.
-> JOB -- DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS -- LAB
The League of American Bicyclists is seeking an experienced communications and publications specialist to develop, manage, and direct the League’s communications activities. Responsibilities include managing the Web site; producing e-newsletters; and editing the bi-monthly membership magazine. Knowledge of Dreamweaver, html code, and bicycling/transportation issues are pluses. Complete benefits package offered.
Send cover letter and resume to Elizabeth Kiker at <email@example.com>
-> JOB -- BIKE-PED COORDINATOR -- SPOKANE (WA)
Spokane, Wash. is hiring a bicycle/pedestrian coordinator. The person will coordinate the development and implementation of a City-wide pedestrian and bicycle program; and advocate for bike/ped mobility and safety. The job performs professional work in urban planning, programming, and community development, and reviews projects for compliance with City plans for non-motorized transportation. Compiles and analyzes planning and design data. Prepares and distributes educational information to the public. Seeks and prepares grant applications. Requires knowledge of the principles and practices of planning and design related to bicycle and pedestrian facilities. For more information or to apply, call (509) 625-6160 or e-mail: <firstname.lastname@example.org>
-> JOB -- PROGRAM DIRECTOR -- SVBC
Join the Silicon Valley (CA) Bicycle Coalition team! We're hiring a full time Program Director to lead our programmatic implementation for Share the Road, Bike to Work Day, and bicycle education, among others.
Please pass this on to those interested! To learn more or apply, go to:
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Contributors: John Williams, Sharon Roerty, Gary MacFadden, Mark Plotz, Bob Chauncey, Chris Jordan, Linda Tracy, Bill Wilkinson, Todd Scott, Raquel Rivas, Jacqueline Douglas, Jessica Wineberg, Erica Meurk, Christopher Douwes, Tricia Selby, and John Cipollina.
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