Health

Cambridge Bike Safety Update

from the email:

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We wanted to update you on a few new action items for safer streets but first, a reminder about our petition campaign! We want to show city officials that people throughout Cambridge support a safe, connected network of protected bike lanes. Sign the petition here if you haven’t already and share widely!

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1. Act Now for a Protected Lane on River Street – and an Implementation Plan for the Citywide Network

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This Monday, there are two key bike related items on the Council’s agenda.

First, the City Manager is requesting funds to update the implementation plan of the bike network (see the second ask on our petition!) Additionally, there is also a request for a protected bike lane on River Street. Take action, more details below.

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ACTION ? Email council@cambridgema.gov, ldepasquale@cambridgema.gov, and cc clerk@cambridgema.gov and info@cambridgebikesafety.org and (1) request the council to approve the budget allocation for an implementation plan for the citywide bike network, and (2) let them know that the reconstruction of River Street MUST include a safe, protected bike lane.

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If you can make it please show up on Monday Nov 5, 5:30pm at City Hall to speak in support of the budget item and policy order. Sign up to speak here or in person.

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The implementation plan for a citywide bike network is potentially quite important, as this could provide a blueprint for implementation of the full bike network within 5 years, as our petition requests. We need to make sure that the council approves this budget item, and that the implementation plan the City comes back with lays out how a complete, safe, connected network of protected bike lanes across the city can be built ASAP.

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The city is rebuilding River Street in 2020 and they have the opportunity to include a protected bike lane. Since River Street goes inbound it would complement the Western Ave protected lane, providing a key connection to and from the Charles River paths.

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On Monday November 5th the City Council will vote on a policy order specifically requesting a protected bike lane as part of the River Street reconstruction. The order was originally scheduled for this week but it was delayed by Councilor Simmons.

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Also, as part of the redesign, they will be forming a working group of stakeholders and thank you to everyone who applied to help advocate for safe bike and pedestrian infrastructure!

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2. Ask your employer to sign on to our business platform

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Local business support can be crucial in getting safe bike infrastructure built. Many employers recognize that a protected bike lane network would be a great asset to Cambridge as well as providing safe transportation for their customers and employees. All we need to do is ask for their support!

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If you work in Cambridge, see here for instructions to ask your employer to sign onto our business platform supporting safe bike infrastructure.

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3. Other updates:

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  • Read the beautiful remembrance written by friends of JJ Zhao who was tragically struck and killed by a dump truck driver in early October while she was walking at Putnam Ave and Magazine St.
  • World Day of Remembrance: This Nov 18 is the World Day of Remembrance. Come to the State House in Boston at 2pm to mourn the people who were killed on our streets this year. Last year’s event was a powerful reminder that the number of pedestrians and cyclists who were killed is much higher than you expect and that urgent action is needed to correct this public health crisis. After the vigil there will be a bike ride and a march to demand safer streets.
  • In addition to signing onto our business platform, two local businesses Industry Lab and Synapse Energy Economics also took the additional crucial step of emailing the city to express how important a protected bike lane network is to them (read Synapse Energy Economics’ statement here). Thanks Industry Lab and Synapse Energy Economics for supporting safe bike infrastructure!

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Industry Lab is a co-working space located in the vibrant hub of Inman Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Inhabiting nearly 20,000 square feet of a historical brick building with wood floors and lots of windows, Industry Lab is a neighborhood for artists, engineers, scientists, and designers to co-exist and collaborate.

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Synapse Energy Economics provides research, analysis, expert testimony, reports, regulatory support, and other consulting services related to energy, economics, and the environment.

FSA names Vandermolen managing director as Bohlen retires

MUKILTEO, Wash. (BRAIN) — Full Speed Ahead Inc. (FSA) has named Mark Vandermolen managing director of its U.S.

MRP hires Rob Aguero as manager of sales and business development

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (BRAIN) — Mountain Racing Products has hired industry veteran Rob Aguero to its sales team.

Do You Want Protected Bike Lanes On The Longfellow?

From Cambridge Bike Safety:

The Longfellow Bridge, a critical bike connector to Boston, is going to be restriped and reopened in May. You may be surprised to learn that in the final design, the inbound bike lane will be similar or worse than it is today: it will continue to have a dangerous 5 1/2-foot painted bike lane between fast-moving cars and trucks on one side, and the storm grates and detritus that builds up next to the crash barrier on the other side. The outbound lane will be slightly better, with a small 2-foot buffer separating bikes from one lane of car traffic with no protection.

According to Boston’s bike counts, one-third of AM rush hour commuters are on bicycles. Those families, commuters and visitors deserve a safe space to ride! We have been working to convince state officials to install pilot protected bike lanes by restriping both lanes, inbound and outbound, with buffers and flexposts to provide separation and permanent protection for the commuters, families, and other people traveling over this bridge on bikes.

To make this vision a reality we need to keep the pressure on state officials. Please take these two actions today to ensure help us transform the Longfellow Bridge from a highway to a safe, mulit-modal connector for everyone, including those walking and bicycling!

  1. Call or email your state representative’s and senator’s offices (look yours up here or find the list of Cambridge reps below) as soon as possible and tell them how important it is to you as a constituent that MassDOT update the design to include safe, protected bike lanes on the bridge in both directions. Please copy us or email us afterward (info@cambridgebikesafety.org and info@bostoncyclistsunion.org) so we can keep a count. Talking points are below.

  2. Sign this petition asking state officials to stripe a safe bike lane with a buffer on the inbound side of the Longfellow. If you’ve already signed, share the link with your friends by email or Facebook.

Background:

A group of advocates led by the Boston Cyclists Union, Cambridge Bicycle Safety, and others has been working to convince state officials to change their plans for the inbound side of the bridge, and use painted buffers and flexposts to provide separation and permanent protection for the commuters, families, and other people traveling over this bridge on bikes.

Specifically, we are asking MassDOT to keep the bridge to one travel lane inbound for cars, in order to install an inbound protected bike lane that would allow cyclists to cross the bridge safely.

  • With only one general travel lane, the protected bike lane can be designed to be quite wide, which will have two ancillary benefits: (1) emergency vehicles like ambulances will be able to safely use the bike lane/buffer when needed (with bicyclists pulling over to the side), (2) bicyclists will be able to safely ride side by side and pass each other on the steep climb up the bridge.

  • We know that one lane is all that’s needed, given that there’s only been one car lane over the past 5+ years of construction, and the traffic implosion that had been predicted never materialized. Also, designating only one travel lane for motor vehicles will reduce speeding.

  • Due to these benefits, the Cambridge City Council officially endorsed this proposed design, and two of our state representatives, Mike Connolly and Jay Livingstone, have publicly written to MassDOT asking them to improve safety by adopting this design. (It’s still important to call Mike and Jay to thank them, so they know this is something people really care about.)

  • Also important to note: the change we are asking for can easily be made, even at this late stage. It primarily involves simply painting different lane markings on the bridge, and does not need to delay the project.

For more information, see the Boston Cyclists Union’s post on the history of the Longfellow bridge project. MassDOT’s currently planned design is using data on mode shares from 9 years ago. In that time, Cambridge bike counts have doubled, and the Longfellow bridge has operated with one vehicular inbound travel lane for 5 years without incident. The bridge must be updated to reflect current trends and emphasize safe, healthy mobility with protected bike lanes in both directions.

Be sure to include Longfellow Bridge in the subject, and if possible add a personal story why this is essential for your safe commute and enjoyment of public spaces.

Sincerely,
The CBS Core Team

Write or call your statehouse legislators using the email addresses and phone numbers below. If you don’t know who they are, visit: https://malegislature.gov/Search/FindMyLegislator

Be sure to include Longfellow Bridge in the subject, copy us (info@cambridgebikesafety.org and info@bostoncyclistsunion.org), and if possible add a personal story why this is essential for your safe commute and enjoyment of public spaces.

House

Rep. Dave Rogers (24th Middlesex)
617-722-2370        Dave.Rogers@mahouse.gov

Rep. Marjorie Decker (25th Middlesex)
617-722-2692        Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov

Rep. Mike Connolly (26th Middlesex)
617-722-2060        Mike.Connolly@mahouse.gov

Rep. Jonathan Hecht (29th Middlesex)
617-722-2140        Jonathan.Hecht@mahouse.gov

Rep. Jay Livingstone (8th Suffolk)
617-722-2013        Jay.Livingstone@mahouse.gov

Rep. Denise Provost (27th Middlesex, Somerville)
617-722-2263        Denise.Provost@mahouse.gov

Senate

Sen. Patricia Jehlen (2nd Middlesex)
617-722-1578        Patricia.Jehlen@masenate.gov

Sen. Sal DiDomenico (Middlesex and Suffolk)
617-722-1650        Sal.DiDomenico@masenate.gov

Sen. Joseph Boncore (1st Suffolk and Middlesex)
617-722-1634        Joseph.Boncore@masenate.gov

North Carolina’s Motion Makers Bicycle Shop to open third store in May

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (BRAIN) — Retailer Kent Cranford has announced plans to open a third Motion Makers Bicycle Shop later this spring.

Calgary Cycle opens new location

CALGARY, Alberta (BRAIN) — Calgary Cycle, which claims to be the oldest bike shop in the city, has opened a new, 12,000-square-foot store for the 2018 season.

Eight programs receive grants for equitable bike share and related research

BOULDER, Colo. (BRAIN) — The Better Bike Share Partnership has awarded more than $410,000 in grants to help increase access to bike share in communities of color, and to fund research related to bike share and equity

Hubway Is Dead Long Live Blue Bikes

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts will pay nearly $20 million to turn the Boston area’s Hubway bike share system into Blue Bikes and expand the program with more than 1,000 new bikes and more than 100 new rental stations across the region.

“Blue Cross is committed to helping Massachusetts residents lead healthy lives, and this program is a way to bring that to life,” said Jeff Bellows, vice-president of corporate citizenship for BCBS. “Being a health-care company, it’s in line with what we want to do.”

BCBS will pay $18 million over six years to be the sole sponsor of the bike share system, which will be renamed Blue Bikes. The money will be used in part to fund a nearly 50 percent increase in bikes — by the end of 2019, there will be 3,000 Blue Bikes on the streets, up from 1,800 today — and add more than 100 new stations across Boston, Cambridge, Brookline and Somerville. The expansion will bring more service to underserved parts of the city, Bellows said.

“Communities like Mattapan, Dorchester, Roxbury, they’re going to get additional access to these bikes,” he said. (via)

While I wish it was more of a public system, maybe tax based, but sure I will siphon off some of the obscene profits BCBS is making to fund bike share programs.

The best part of this is that Hubway/Blue Bikes will continue, and it will expand into areas that have not been served by it so far.

Shootouts, Seminars, Happy Hours, After Hours and more: Interbike events calendar for Tuesday and Wednesday

A calendar of events for Tuesday and Wednesday at the OutDoor Demo and Interbike Expo.  Tuesday, Sept.

ACT Lab establishes sales and research office in Japan

LONG BEACH, Calif.