#242 Wednesday, December 9, 2009
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.
R-E-G-I-O-N-A-L and L-O-C-A-L--A-C-T-I-O-N-S
-> According to the Dec. 7th American Bicyclist Update, "On November 13, 2009, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and nine other Representatives introduced H.R. 4021 to make high schools eligible for Safe Routes to School funding. Allowing high schools to compete for federal Safe Routes to School funding will help adolescents be more physically active, continue healthy and green transportation habits, and reinforce bicycle and pedestrian safety for high school students."
Read the bill here: http://tinyurl.com/yz59lzq
-> According to a Dec. 1st L.A. StreetsBlog entry, "The question of how to get more women on bikes has received quite a lot of attention recently, in part because of a recent article in Scientific American that suggested women are an 'indicator species' for bike-friendly communities."
"A group of people in Darlington, United Kingdom, decided to approach the problem of getting women on bikes by getting girls on bikes. The result is Beauty and the Bike, a multifaceted project -- a book, a documentary, and perhaps most excitingly, a bike-share program. Watch the short version of the film. It's so wonderful to see how the girls move from skepticism about cycling to exhilaration about how 'liberating' it is..."
Visit St. Paul Smart Trips: http://tinyurl.com/yfdxbyp
-> According to a Dec. 8th news release, "Congressman Earl Blumenauer; New York City Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan; and artist/musician David Byrne joined city officials from Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington D.C. to launch Cities for Cycling, a new effort by city governments to promote best practices in urban cycling and to increase the use of bicycles to improve urban mobility, livability and public health while reducing traffic congestion and CO2 emissions..."
"Providing safe, comfortable, convenient bicycling facilities has allowed cities like Portland, New York and others to vastly increase commuter cycling and drive down injuries and fatalities to cyclists. From protected cycle-tracks to bike boxes and special traffic signals for bikes; Cities for Cycling seeks to share these best practices among leading cities and encourage State and Federal governments to adopt the new design treatments emerging from cities as standard practices, opening up funding and technical support opportunities and cutting red tape..."
Cities for Cycling is a project of the National Association of City Transportation Officials and is supported by Bikes Belong and the SRAM Cycling Fund.
For more info, go to: http://tinyurl.com/yzhjjox
-> According to the League of American Bicyclists, "The Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) is a Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) program that funds highway safety projects aimed at reducing highway fatalities and serious injuries. Though bicycle and pedestrian projects are eligible for funding, HSIP has been largely overlooked as a resource for these projects. In fact, many states have failed to spend a majority of their safety money. Recognizing this discrepancy, the following document outlines the HSIP funding process and describes how these funds can be harnessed for bike and pedestrian infrastructure projects."
Download the report (12.4MB PDF) here: http://tinyurl.com/yh7ncnf
Via December 2009 Safe Routes to School E-News: http://tinyurl.com/292n2j
BIKES BELONG AWARDS $50,000 IN GRANTS
"These grants are made possible by the Bikes Belong Employee Pro Purchase Program.
Since 1999, Bikes Belong has awarded 196 grants in 48 states and the District of Columbia, totaling nearly $1.6 million, leveraging close to $550 million in federal, state, and private funding.
For more info, go to: http://tinyurl.com/ygsabww
-> In a Dec. 5th email, Dave Holladay, Public Transport Adviser for the UK's Cyclists' Touring Club, wrote of his interest to "learn more about the bicycle as the key transport tool in disaster recovery, recognising that it can help the communities in West Cumbria who suffered the equivalent of a mini tsunami when the river Derwent was hit by over a foot of rain falling in 24 hours and thundering down from Derwentwater to the coast, knocking out over a dozen bridges by washing them away or making them unsafe, with only 1 life lost -- a Police officer keeping people away from a bridge which collapsed taking him with it. "
"Bicycles got Sri Lankan coastal towns up and working as soon as the waters subsided, and in Vietnam they transported supplies through the jungle when roads and bridges had been destroyed by bombing -- up to 250Kg moved by a man wheeling a bicycle, along the most basic of tracks. Even today the bicycle couriers of Bicycle Express move through the jungle of Congo and other places where 'normal' transport has practically disappeared to get supplies in and out."
"London also experienced this effect when the bombers struck in 2005 and bike shops were selling bikes at a manic rate (a 6 month closure of a central section of a commuter railway had a similar effect with a 1000% increase in the number of bikes parked at the station for use as an alternative to the long walk to the other half of the line)."
"Has anyone else documented such effects from a disaster or disruption to a public transport service?"
If you’ve got stories, contact Dave at <email@example.com>
-> According to the Dec. 3rd Helmet Update, from the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute, "We submitted samples of six helmet models to a leading U.S. test lab: three in the $150+ range and three under $20. The impact test results were virtually identical. There were very few differences in performance among the helmets. Our conclusion: when you pay more for a helmet you may get an easier fit, more vents and snazzier graphics. But the basic impact protection of the cheap helmets we tested equaled the expensive ones."
"The results are a testimony to the effectiveness of our legally-required CPSC helmet standard. Although our sample was small, the testing indicates that the consumer can shop for a bicycle helmet in the US market without undue concern about the impact performance of the various models on sale, whatever the price level. The most important advice is to find a helmet that fits you well so that it will be positioned correctly when you hit."
For details, go to: http://tinyurl.com/yfalafq
-> According to a Nov. 25th Capital-Journal article, "In designing future street projects, the city staff should integrate and implement 'Complete Streets' concepts targeted at making roadways safe and accessible for everyone, including bicyclists and pedestrians, the Topeka City Council decided Tuesday night."
"The council voted 8-1 to approve a resolution sponsored by Councilman Larry Wolgast that changed city policy by directing the staff to make that move to the extent financially feasible. The measure also made it the city's goal to adequately finance the policy's implementation."
"The outcome of Tuesday's vote 'shows we are progressive and moving forward,' Wolgast told the council. 'The important point is that our transportation plan will be designed not for moving vehicles as quickly as possible, but by taking into consideration all who use streets,' he said..."
-> According to the Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition's Dec. 1st newsletter, "Through the hard work of the MassBike Pioneer Valley Chapter, 29 new buses owned by the Pioneer Valley Transit Agency will be fitted with bike racks. PVTA buses in the Northern Tier serving the Five College system already had bike racks (year-round, thanks in part to MB/PV’s efforts), but the Southern Tier buses had no racks. MassBike/PV has been lobbying PVTA for years to include bike racks year-round on those buses too, including letters to key officials and comments on the Regional Transportation Plan. That advocacy has finally paid off! PVTA has agreed to install bike racks on all buses that serve three Southern Tier routes as a pilot to begin in March 2010..."
-> According to a Nov. 30th Courier-Journal article, "Thanks to a massive outpouring of federal economic-stimulus funds, Louisville next year will see the most ambitious sidewalk-improvement program ever undertaken here -- with 70 times more spending than in most years, metro government officials say."
"More than $7 million has been budgeted for about 2,500 sidewalk projects, in all corners of Jefferson County, former Deputy Mayor Rick Johnstone said. About 60 percent are in the old city limits, where most sidewalks are at least 50 years old, said Johnstone, who came out of retirement recently to coordinate what’s been dubbed the 'Louisville at Work' program..."
-> A great year of Pittsburgh cyclists!
Check out some of what we've accomplished through numbers:
-> According to a Dec. 5th Citiwire.net article by Scott Polikov, "Two years ago, Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) President John Norquist approached the lectern to address the Texas Transportation Commission upon the invitation of the late Commission Chairman Ric Williamson, an avowed road worrier. Knowing that the Transportation Commission, the overseers of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), had just embarked on one of the largest road building efforts in recent American history, Norquist said, 'Mr. Chairman, I'm not against your big road running between your cities -- but I am here to talk about how TxDOT can begin to support local communities, neighborhoods and economic development'..."
"That day Williamson had obviously listened, asking me 'what would you and Mike Krusee [chair of the Texas House of Representatives Transportation Committee] like to do now?' I responded that TxDOT should take a serious look at its roadway design policies. With that, the Commission created the TxDOT Urban Thoroughfares Committee. After a year of work, the committee recommended -- and TxDOT agreed -- to adopt as an accepted roadway design criteria for the state, rgw Institute of Transportation Engineers' ‘Manual for Walkable Urban Thoroughfares'..."
-> According to a Dec. 4th Daily News article, "Indiana students will soon find it safer to walk or bike to 51 schools thanks to $3.35 million in federal awards the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) announced today. Safe Routes to School funds awarded to cities, towns and schools increased nearly 20 percent, allowing a larger proportion of applications to be approved this year..."
""Projects in Northeast Indiana include:
-> According to a Dec. 1st Marin Independent Journal article, "The number of people getting around Marin by pedal power or their own two feet has jumped in the past decade, according to a county survey of pathways. Weekday bicycling rates have increased 118 percent since 1999 and the number of pedestrians has risen 51 percent in that same period, based on counts taken for a federally funded pilot program designed to encourage bicycle and pedestrian transportation."
"The number of weekend bicyclists increased 125 percent between 1999 and 2009 while weekend walking in the county went up 5 percent in the past decade, the survey found. 'This shows there has been a major increase in bicycling during this time period,' said Deb Hubsmith, advocacy director of the Marin County Bicycle Coalition. 'There were increases in all areas, but bicycling increases were the greatest.'..."
Via Marin Co. Bicycle Coalition: http://tinyurl.com/yf3qdua
-> According to a Nov. 4th Columbine Courier article, "Several weeks after the [Jefferson County] commissioners formally decided they would not seek legislation giving them the power to restrict bicycling on county roads, Commissioner Kathy Hartman says the cycling-versus-motorist issue comes down to one simple thing. Both sides need to follow the existing law."
"We tell everybody to obey the law, and tell everybody that we are going to continue to enforce the law,' Hartman said. Things certainly weren't that simple in late June and July, when the commissioners became embroiled in a controversy after announcing they would seek the authority to ban cycling on certain county roads. After a loud pushback from cyclists all over the world, the commissioners backed off the plan and eventually told their lobbyists to forget about the issue..."
Note: According to the Dec. 4th issue of Bicycle Colorado's "eNews" newsletter, "While the article says Jefferson County will no longer pursue bike ban legislation, it doesn't address the real prospect of other counties or legislators taking up the charge. The article also quoted two legislators saying they are in favor of taking away bicyclists' legal ability to be more visible to motorists by riding side-by-side..."
-> According to a Dec. 8th News article, "The Sheridan City Council met last night and they will ask WYDOT for over $300,000 in Safe Routes to School funds. The money would fund half of a project to install sidewalks in the neighborhoods around Meadowlark School...""
-> According to a Nov. 25th U.S. News and World Report article, "In 2018, more than half the adults in Oklahoma, Mississippi, Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, and South Dakota could be obese. That's just one of many alarming projections in a study released last week by Kenneth Thorpe, chair of Emory University's Department of Health Policy and Management, and it comes, appropriately, as Congress is grappling with how to best reform a healthcare system that is becoming wildly and unsustainably expensive."
"By Thorpe's calculations, within a decade, nearly 1 of every 5 dollars spent on healthcare in the United States will be attributable to obesity-related conditions, including diabetes and high blood pressure. 'It's certainly a wake-up call,' Thorpe says. 'To see you've got six states within 10 years of the majority of the adult population being considered obese—that's a pretty remarkable statistic.'..."
-> According to a Dec. 1st Daily News article, "Just one in four Los Angeles Unified students proved physically fit in the latest test -- a slight improvement over last year, but still below the state average and a worrying figure for educators, according to figures released Monday. Statewide, roughly one in three students passed all of the California Physical Fitness tests, which measure the youngsters' ability to run and perform chin-ups and crunches, officials said. "
"Results show that 25 percent of Los Angeles Unified students passed the tests in 2008-09 compared with 23 percent a year earlier. Statewide, the scores ticked up from 33 to 34 percent. Educators, however, were unimpressed by the improvement. 'The percentage of students statewide that are not even minimally fit remains unacceptably high,' State Superintendent Jack O'Connell O'Connell said during a news conference to announce the results..."
-> "I don't need Zoloft or Prozac. Biking is very good for my mental health. And I notice that when I don't bike, I become a little bit more irritable, lay around more and just (have) minor symptoms of depression."
Via Kansas Cyclist: http://tinyurl.com/9gh54d
AND NOW, FOR SOMETHING THING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT...
LIVE SHIPS MAP - AIS - VESSEL TRAFFIC AND POSITION!
WEBINAR: "Connecting with Public Health Professionals on Bike/Ped Issues"
Date: Dec. 16, 3:00 p.m. EST
Host: Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals
Cost: $50 per site for APBP members, $60 per site for others
Details (and registration): http://tinyurl.com/ycubgxs
Questions: Debra Goeks, APBP, <firstname.lastname@example.org> or (262) 228-7025.
WEBINAR: "Selection of Crosswalk Markings and Other Treatments at Unsignalized Pedestrian Crossings"
Date: Jan. 21, 2010, 2 p.m. - 3 p.m., EST
Presenter: Charlie Zegeer, Director, Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center
Host: UNC Highway Safety Research Center
Details (and registration): http://tinyurl.com/yegkdp9
-> "TRANSIT AND SMALL URBAN SPRAWL"
-> "REVIEW OF DOT'S IMPLEMENTATION OF THE AMERICAN..."
-> "COMMUNICATING TRANSPORTATION, ENERGY, AND..."
opportunities are available on the National Center for Bicycling &
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and easy. Please be sure your calendar items pertain to training and workshops
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-> January 10-14, 2010, Transportation Research Board (TRB) 89th Annual Meeting, Washington D.C. Info:
-> February 4-6, 2010, 9th Annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference, Seattle, WA. Info:
-> February 7-10, 2010, 10th American Academy of Health Behavior Annual Scientific Meeting, Clearwater Beach, FL. Info:
-> March 27, 2010 -- Michigan Bicycle Summit in Lansing, MI. Info:
-> April 8, 2010, Florida Bike Summit, Tallahassee FL. Info:
-> May 2-5, 2010, National Main Streets Conference, Oklahoma City. Info:
-> May 11-13, 2010, Pro Bike/Pro Walk Florida 2010, Lakeland, FL. Info:
-> May 26, 2010 -- Michigan Bicycle Advocacy Day in Lansing, MI. Info:
-> May 30-June 2, 2010, International Conference on Safety and Mobility of Vulnerable Road Users: Pedestrians, Motorcyclists, and Bicyclists, Jerusalem, Israel. Info:
-> June 13-18, 2010, Built Environment Assessment Training (BEAT) Institute, Philadelphia, PA. Info:
-> June 22-25, 2010, Velo-city Global 2010, Copenhagen, DK. Info:
-> September 13-17, 2010. Pro Walk/Pro Bike, the Sixteenth International Symposium on Walking and Bicycling, Chattanooga, Tennessee.
-> JOBS -- NEW MEDIA + RESEARCH -- RTC
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) is a national nonprofit organization advocating healthier lifestyles by creating a nationwide network of public trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors. Founded in 1986, RTC is one of the most respected trail advocacy organizations in the nation with more than 100,000 members and supporters. After helping create more than 15,000 miles of rail-trail over the last 23 years, RTC has an ambitious goal for the future: by 2020, 90 percent of Americans will live within three miles of a trail system. RTC is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with regional offices in California, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
- Director, New Media (Full-Time): RTC seeks to hire an innovative professional in the field of "new media" to manage our daily Web and online communications operations and coordinate the growth of our programmatic and fundraising e-platform. For the announcement, go to: http://tinyurl.com/ykhucaq
- Director, Research (Full-Time): Director of Research responsible for managing all aspects of Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's research initiatives. For the announcement, go to: http://tinyurl.com/y854lne
-> JOB -- K.C. ACTIVE TRANS PGM COORD -- MO FDN FOR BICYCLING & WALKING
The Missouri Foundation for Bicycling and Walking is seeking a program manager to run three new programs:
Successful applicants will have to be able to work successfully with minimal supervision, to create and run these programs. Applicants must have personal experience with and a passion for active transportation. We prefer to hire one full-time individual for all three programs, but will also consider part-time hires for specific programs.
Existing grants fund these programs for the initial 18-24 months; part of the program manager's responsibility will be to help the organization develop sources of funding to continue these or similar programs, so that this position can be continued beyond this initial funding.
For the full announcement, go to: http://tinyurl.com/ydoxmgm
-> JOBS -- INTERNS -- ALLIANCE FOR BIKING & WALKING
- Member Services Intern: Alliance for Biking & Walking, a coalition of grassroots bicycle and pedestrian advocacy organizations across North America, is seeking an intern to help with our work to create, strengthen and unite state and local advocacy movement. The Membership Services Intern will gain firsthand knowledge working with the member organizations of our international coalition.
Work includes assisting with membership outreach, prospect acquisition, database development, website updates, member resource development, event coordination, and annual appeals. This internship offers a flexible schedule with a fifteen-hour-a-week minimum commitment for three months. This position is based in Washington, DC. A modest stipend up to $1,500 will be available.
Deadline for applications is January 3, 2010. For details and application instructions see http://tinyurl.com/oct357
- Communications Intern: Alliance for Biking & Walking is seeking an intern to help with our work to create, strengthen and unite the grassroots biking and walking advocacy movement. The Communications Intern will have a unique opportunity to work firsthand with a national non-profit.
Work includes regular editing and writing for web and print communications, administering and editing an online resources and photo library, outreach and research for Alliance publications, assisting with mailings, compiling the Alliance’s monthly e-newsletter, outreach to sponsor and partner groups, and other general communications tasks. This is a virtual internship (meaning you work from home) offering a flexible schedule with a fifteen-hour-a-week minimum commitment. The ideal candidate will be based in the San Francisco Bay Area. A modest stipend of $1,500 will be available.
Deadline for applications is January 3, 2010. For details and application instructions see http://tinyurl.com/oct357
- Program Intern: Alliance for Biking & Walking is seeking an intern to help with our work to create, strengthen and unite the grassroots biking and walking advocacy movement. The Program Intern will gain first hand knowledge working with a national coalition on programs including trainings, grants, organizational development, and resource development.
Tasks may include editing training and retreat materials, reviewing grant applications, outreach to grant applicants and volunteers, updating database to assist with organizational development efforts, outreach to our member organizations, and compiling resources for members, and more. This position is based in Washington, DC. A modest stipend up to $1,500 will be available.
Deadline for applications is January 3, 2010. For details and application instructions see http://tinyurl.com/oct357
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