NCBW Newsroom - Regional and Local Actions
The National & International Scene | Regional and Local Actions | The Research Beat | Resources | Jobs, Grants & RFPs
MINNEAPOLIS, MN 1ST US CITY ON THE COPENHAGENIZE INDEX
-> According to the Top 20 Copenhagenize Index of Bicycle-Friendly Cities: Minneapolis muscles its way into the Copenhagenize Index - the first American city to feature since the number of cities ranked increased in 2013. The city has the lowest baseline score of all the cities in the Top 20 but made up for that with bonus points in a number of categories. The city boasts 189 km of what they call "on-street bikeways" and 147 km of off-street. The latter is less interesting for urban cycling but Minneapolis is quickly becoming the go-to city in America for building infrastructure. An impressive - for America - modal share helped push them into the Index and we like the political will coming out of City Hall. A respectable bike share system is helping to cement the bicycle on the transport foundation of the city. Seeds have been planted and a garden is growing. America - often content with baby steps - is in desperate need of leadership cities and Minneapolis has emerged as a contender. http://bit.ly/1HIChXp. See the full list at http://bit.ly/1fGnKpe.
PORTLAND, OR: COMBINE USER BIKE TRIP INPUT & REAL-TIME BIKE COUNTS
-> One of Portlandís most interesting tech startups is about to move into its next phase: attempting to recruit thousands of local bike users to become rolling bikeway evaluators. Knock Software, the company that is simultaneously contracting with the City of Portland on an experimental piece of hardware that aims to radically lower the cost of counting bike traffic, is also setting out to convince 10,000 people to install its mobile app by the end of this summer. The offer: put the free app on your phone, give each bike trip a quick "thumbs up" or "thumbs down" as you complete it, and the city will be able to parse massive numbers of such trips into data that can rapidly improve Portlandís streets.
Knock founder William Henderson said in an interview that the combination of instant real-time bike counts (gathered by Knockís small, low-cost sensors) and real-time user evaluations (gathered voluntarily from people who install Knockís upcoming app, which is called Ride) would completely change the cityís ability to prove that its biking improvements are making a difference. http://bit.ly/1Ob4RpO
VA ADOPTS MULTIMODAL, COMPETITIVE PROJECT SCORING PROCESS
-> Last year Virginia enacted legislation to select state-supported transportation projects through a multimodal, competitive process. State-of-good-repair projects, such as bridge and pavement rehabilitation, as well as highway safety projects, were exempt. But a wide range of other projects, including road, transit and bicycle-pedestrian infrastructure; operations improvements; and transportation demand management, will be scored together. The law prescribed five areas to be considered in the scoring, along with project cost: congestion mitigation, economic development, accessibility, safety, environmental quality and land use. http://bit.ly/1dXgXWE
CYCLETRACK PROGRESS IN BOSTON, MA
-> Boston Cyclists Union reports in December, the City of Boston committed to installing a cycletrack on Commonwealth Ave, and the Bike Union has been working with them ever since on details of the design. In February, the Department of Conservation and Recreation unveiled a bold new concept for the Arborway that includes cycletracks from Kelley to Murray circle and back, and turns all three existing traffic rotaries into calmer, safer roundabouts. This will connect the Arnold Arboretum and Jamaica Pond for families and everybody who wants to ride a bike-regardless of their skill level. In May, the town of Brookline proposed a cycletrack between the Muddy River Path and Brookline Village, after an extended advocacy effort from the Bike Union, several local residents and Brookline Bicycle Committee members.
This year's new project is Bikeways for Everybody, an effort that will highlight five crosstown routes that are the most desired by bicyclists, and thus the most likely to encourage more biking if they are comfortable for people of all ages. The first route is a 15-mile cycletrack from Mattapan Square to Assembly Row. http://bit.ly/1K5AZfY
CHICAGO, IL: $5/YR BIKESHARE LOW-INCOME MEMBERSHIP
-> Chicago is hoping to bring its Divvy bikeshare to a wider audience with "Divvy for Everyone" (http://bit.ly/1fDdzSB), a discounted annual membership of just $5 for qualified applicants ó that's $70 off the normal price. (Citi Bike also offers a discounted annual membership, but it's still $60.) Applicants' households must bring in less than 300 percent of the federal poverty level, which would start at $35,310 for an individual with no children. The first 250 applicants are also going to get a free helmet. http://bit.ly/1O1qc4z
NYC: CITI BIKE WORKERS 1ST BIKESHARE TO UNIONIZE
-> Citi Bike workers have a new labor contract, just months after joining the Transport Workers Union, becoming the nationís first employees of a bike-share program to reach such an agreement. About 200 people are covered under the new deal, the New York Times reported, and the contract calls for pay raises of at least $1.50 per hour immediately, with additional increases over the next four-and-a-half years. By the end of the contract, in 2020, the Wall Street Journal added, workersí wages will have risen by more than 20 percent, on average. http://bit.ly/1SjvWrn
HONOLULU, HI: RECYCLES BUSES AS TRANSITIONAL HOUSING
-> The City of Honolulu will transform old, out of commission city buses into transitional housing for homeless people in the city. The city will partner with architecture firm Group 70 International, to renovate the buses into living and recreational areas while other buses will be outfitted solely with bathrooms and showers. http://bit.ly/1CvHUqL
Get a jump start on this news by subscribing to CenterLines.