awesome

Connecting Historic Boston With A Bike Path: Make Your Voice Heard!

Imagine a giant figure 8 loop around the downtown core of the city of dedicated car free cycle tracks for cyclists.

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I really like this idea, I think it has potential as not only a way to see all the historic sights in Boston, but also as a downtown Bike Freeway system.  Providing a way to get around the core of the city (and beyond) on a high capacity dedicated bike way.

Most importantly it can be used as an foundation to build future infrastructure from.  Check out this meeting and attend to support this great idea!

got this in the email

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Spread the word!  Nov 21st 6pm

http://connecthistoric-boston.org/ideas/connect-historic-boston-bike-trail/

Crucial meeting: Support a cycletrack on Causeway St!

The Connect Historic Boston Bike Trail is a proposal for “a family-friendly bicycle loop around downtown Boston.” To make Causeway Street family-friendly will require a physically separate bike lane (a.k.a. cycletrack) for bikes, and new improvements for pedestrians. The Boston Cyclists Union, LivableStreets Alliance, MassBike and WalkBoston invite you to show up and speak up at a meeting presenting a new plan for Causeway Street — a crucial link the proposed Connect Historic Boston Bike Trail downtown.

SAVE THE DATE:

Public Meeting on Causeway redesign
Thurs., Nov. 21
6pm
CBT Architects
110 Canal St.
Boston

Find more information on the Connect Historic Boston Bike Trail here.

Mass Ave Bridge Repaved!

Whoooo Hooooo!  No longer will you have to deal with the amazingly poor conditions on the Cambridge side in the bike lane!  This was WAY overdue.

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More from Livable Streets Below:

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BREAKING NEWS

Massachusetts Ave (Harvard) Bridge is about to be much safer!

Over the weekend, MassDOT repaved the Mass Ave Bridge because YOU said you wanted a better bridge! This week it will be painted.

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Just as every new bike lane is a product of relentless advocacy, maintaining the lanes, smooth pavement and public support requires constant dedicated resources.

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Mass Ave Bridge conditions before this weekend.

We heard your complaints about the bridge for years, and documented the worsening conditions on the bridge… bumps in the pavement, gravel piling up, and disappearing bike lanes.

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We worked with government and created handouts for the public. We organized Street Ambassador volunteers to go out on the bridge to collect your stories and signatures to give to transportation leaders to demand change.

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Together, we won a better Mass Ave Bridge! What happened on Mass Ave bridge is happening across countless neighborhoods: a single poor road condition creates unsafe streets.

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LivableStreets is working for you – providing resources, experience, and a network – fighting for better conditions.

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With your support, we can develop innovative resources for local advocacy and continue to provide direct support to dozens of projects in neighborhoods across the region. Please donate today.

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DONATE TODAY.

  

Sincerely,

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Jackie Douglas

Executive Director

Police Give Out Hundreds Of Free Helmets And Lights

Awesome!

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Police officials from BU, Boston, and Brookline are teaming up this week to give away hundreds of free helmets to cyclists riding in the Commonwealth Avenue area, to prevent accidents and spread awareness about biking safety.

Boston University Sgt. Larry Cuzzi said Monday afternoon that police officers had handed out nearly 75 helmets that morning. He estimated that they would donate hundreds by Wednesday evening, when the giveaway ends.

Read the rest here.

These sort of events are just as important as the ticket stings, and I hope they do this more often.

I have been stuck in so much bike traffic lately get your helmets and lights and join us!

This Just In: McGrath To Get Cyclist/Pedestrian Upgrades!

Way to go everyone!

From Livable Streets:

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You voiced your opinion and Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) listened.

Thanks to your support over the past three years, we could see much needed improvements to the McGrath corridor from Somerville Ave to Washington Street around the McCarthy Overpass by next summer.

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Now, as part of the State’s repair project, MassDOT is planning to make additional surface improvements for people to make it safer and easier to walk, bike, take the bus, and drive, when originally the only plan was to repair the structure.

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LivableStreets urged the State to reconsider how they are investing money in this project. Taking our feedback, the State hired consultants to analyze the possibilities. Last week, data and conceptual drawings were presented to LivableStreets and other stakeholders. The drawings showed new and improved intersections, buffered bicycle lanes, designated areas for buses, improved traffic signals, and the closing of ramps and tunnels. 

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With the addition of a new intersection and improved crossings, you would be able to walk and bike along McGrath and get from one side of McGrath to the other safely and more easily, unlike today.

The new ideas presented are because you wrote letters, volunteered, signed postcards, and attended meetings and spoke up. Now we are closer to seeing these much needed improvements.

Thank you Massachusetts Department of Transportation and City of Somerville! 

Today (top); A vision (bottom)

We are also now one step closer to realizing the ultimate vision of taking down the outdated overpass to make our communities more connected and livable, and pave the way for more businesses and jobs.

The work is not complete though… We must continue to weigh in on the plans and there will be public meetings this spring.

Together, we can make these changes happen! Join LivableStreets today. By becoming a member or donating now, you will contribute to helping make these changes actually happen.

 

Thank you,

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Jackie Douglas, Executive Director

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PS -Come celebrate this news and much more at our 3rd annual Spring member meet and greet on April 18!

CommonWheels Hiring For Spring

Got this in the email, check it out!

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Hope all is well and you’re ready for that Spring Thaw!  I wanted to let you know that CommonWheels is looking to hire a couple of folks part-time for our upcoming season.

The complete descriptions/instructions for applying are attached, but here’s the gist.  We are looking to hire an Event Coordinator and Mechanic for our Open Shop program.  Open Shop is our flagship program, and basically involves setting up on the side of the road or at a farmers market, and helping people fix up their bikes for free.  We provide the repair stands, tools, and guidance on the basics of bike maintenance and repair, in addition to running more structured workshops.  The Event Coordinator is in charge of managing the Open Shop from wire to wire.  The Mechanic will take the lead on fixing bikes and instructions, and should recognize that this is not like showing up to a shop and wrenching on bikes for a while; the idea is to teach folks to fix their own bikes, as much as possible.

An application = cover letter and resume, emailed to info@commonwheels.org, by Friday March 22nd.

Event Coordinator job description

Mechanic job description

Reflecting All The Things!

Josh over at Bike Safe Boston made this awesome fully reflective “safety” bike a while ago. I am late to the party but still think it is awesome.

This coating is different from anything available on the market today. When headlights hit it, the whole bike glows bright white, making it next to impossible for drivers to miss. I’m convinced that this sort of high visibility technology can save lives and make biking safer and more appealing for everyone. That’s why I joined the company that makes it—I want to be a part of the next frontier of bike safety.

Check out more about this cool tech here.

MassBike Unveils Its Legislative Agenda For 2013

via MassBike:

It looks like they are going to tackle some important issues, head over to their site and support them if you want them to keep working on these important issues.

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billLast week, two bills written by MassBike were filed in the Legislature, and we are strongly supporting two other bills to make biking and walking safer.

MassBike’s bills are the “Act To Protect Vulnerable Road Users”, S.D. 723, and the “Act To Protect Bicyclists In Bicycle Lanes”, S.D. 731. Many thanks to Senator William Brownsberger, who sponsored and filed the bills on our behalf.

YOU CAN HELP

We are actively seeking co-sponsors for all these bills, but the deadline is February 1, so there isn’t much time! Please email your own state senator and state representative and ask them to co-sponsor these bills. If you’re not sure who they are or how to email them, enter your address here.

This marks the second time we have filed the Vulnerable Road Users Bill. In the last session, it got stuck in committee, but we succeeded in raising awareness of the risks posed by motor vehicles to bicyclists, walkers, and other vulnerable users.  The bill will strongly encourage motorists to exercise more caution when operating around vulnerable road users, will educate motorists to operate more safely, and will provide law enforcement with additional tools to protect vulnerable road users. The bill:

  • Defines “vulnerable users” to include pedestrians, bicyclists, and others including wheelchair users, all non-motorized users, and horseback riders (an even more inclusive list than last time!)
  • Enhances the fines applicable to motorists who kill or seriously injure vulnerable users
  • Requires traffic safety education
  • Requires community service

And, new for the VRU Bill: We have added protection that makes it illegal to physically harass a vulnerable user with a motor vehicle, and enables you to sue motorists for a wide range of harassing behavior.

The Bicycle Lane Bill is very straight-forward and addresses a common problem: It makes it a violation statewide for the driver of a motor vehicle to park or stand in a marked bicycle lane or other on-street bicycle facility. When a motor vehicle parks or stands in a bike lane, it endangers bicyclists by causing them to move out of the bike lane into traffic to avoid the parked vehicle, or squeeze between the parked vehicle and the curb or other parked cars. In most communities in Massachusetts, it is not clearly a violation to park in a bike lane. While the City of Boston has recognized the problem and adopted its own ordinance, we run the risk of a patchwork of inconsistent and confusing local laws if we do not act statewide.

MassBike also strongly supports bills filed by our partners:

The “Act Relative To Active Streets And Healthy Communities”, S.D. 676/H.D. 1917, will create a program that encourages cities and towns across Massachusetts to routinely include Complete Streets design elements in locally funded road projects, making streets that are safer and more convenient for bicyclists, pedestrians, and all users – not just cars.

The “Act Relative To Speed Limits”, H.D. 3991, would reduce the prevailing speed limit (the default when there is no sign) from 30mph to 25mph. Even a small reduction in speed limits can dramatically increase the chances of a bicyclist or pedestrian surviving a collision with a motor vehicle.

Finally, the Transportation for Massachusetts coalition (MassBike is a member) has filed three bills aimed at increasing revenue for transportation and accountability for transportation decisions. These bills support the very progressive transportation plan recently proposed by the Governor, including increased funding for biking and walking.

MAPC 2012 Bike Map

Don’t know why I didn’t see this sooner, but still pretty awesome!

View larger Trailmap

MAPC is proud to present our walking and cycling map with a nearly complete inventory of the regions bicycling and walking facilities.  This map includes on road cycling facilities including bike lanes and cycle tracks, rail trails and other shared use paths, plus hiking trails.

Access our online map, download a copy of our print map, or pick up a free copy of the print map at the MAPC office in downtown Boston.

Harvard Student Creates Stolen Bike Tracking Website: Bikenapped!

The coolest feature of which is the ability to see vissualy where the bikes in Boston are being stolen, so you can avoid leaving your bike in those locations with nothing but a shitty cable lock overnight…If your bike is stolen there is a handy place to announce it here.

From the website:

Bikenapped aims to raise awareness for bike thefts and empower cyclists to take action.

As Boston works towards becoming a world class bicycling city, increasing bike thefts becomes a rising concern. Bike theft is notoriously difficult to investigate, and stolen bicycles are equally difficult to recover. There is nowhere individuals to speak out, no outlet to take action. By gathering this community of individual voices, we can speak with a collective voice to shed light on the problem, and work together to find solutions.


From the website:

Bike thefts in Cambridge has been steadily increasing over the past 5 years. The percentage increase is particularly noteworthy, indicative of rising urban problem. In addition, due to the presence of 3 separate police departments in Cambridge (the Cambridge PD, Harvard PD, and MIT PD), who all keep separate records and statistics on crimes, the published data does not accurately reflect the true scale of the issue. Majority of bikes stolen were locked with cable locks. Cable locks can be easily compromised by common tools found at hardware stores and provide little deterrent for thieves. Unsecured bikes were stolen in residential areas, left on porches or yards. While u-locks are not.

See the whole map here.

More info about the creator here.



Awesome Bike Themed Halloween Costume

This awesome “Bikehopper” won best costume in Mass. See more here.