council

Boston Cyclist Union Still Fighting For Improvements To Longfellow

Anyone who has ridden over the new Longfellow bridge knows…its not good.  Even with the new “improvements” it still is pretty bad, especially considering how much better it could be.  But the BCU and a lot of other people are STILL FIGHTING!

Update from them below:

It’s been more than a month since you’ve received an update on the Longfellow, and a lot has happened!

The Boston City Council unanimously passed a resolution last month endorsing our proposed striping design, joining the Cambridge City Council, which passed a similar resolution in April. Somerville Mayor Joe Curtatone and Rep. Mike Capuano also endorsed the plan, with Capuano writing to MassDOT, “…the Boston Cyclists Union raises legitimate concerns, and I urge MassDOT to address them.”

Responding to mounting pressure and working with advocates, MassDOT has already committed to several safety improvements we have been asking for. This includes reducing the speed limit to 25 miles per hour, and installing a speed feedback board; narrowing inbound travel lanes by a total of one foot, while widening the bike lane from 5.5’ to 6.5’; installing flex posts on the inbound and outbound sides to physically separate cyclists from moving car traffic; and adding signage directing large vehicles to use the left inbound lane, to give additional comfort to cyclists in the bike lane. All of these changes to the original design are slated for completion in the first week of June.

These are all welcome changes that will make the bridge dramatically safer than it would have been under MassDOT’s original plan. We applaud MassDOT for listening to and heeding the voices of so many cyclists, advocates and elected officials, and for showing a commitment to working with us toward a safer solution.

What’s more, MassDOT is not done making improvements to the bridge. After hearing from us, many of you, and other stakeholders who have engaged with them over the past few months asking for safety upgrades to the bridge’s design, MassDOT is working hard to respond to our concerns. Yesterday, MassDOT met with stakeholders, who have engaged over the past few months with safety concerns over the bridge design, to discuss future plans to make the bridge even safer. Secretary Pollack committed to working with stakeholders to run a pilot on the inbound side of the bridge, testing out the narrowing of the bridge to one lane for cars with a wider, separated bike lane that would allow safe passing. We’ll be looking to you to give feedback as this change happens, to help secure the safer, wider lane permanently, so please continue to follow the progress and be in touch with us!

This is a huge victory, and it would not have been possible without you showing up and speaking up. Whether you canvassed for signatures, signed our petition online or in person, emailed or called your state rep or city councilor — YOU made a difference and are impacting a decade-old decision that many felt was unchangeable. We are accomplishing the impossible, all because we stood together to ensure MassDOT listened. This is our collective strength in action.

We look forward to seeing this project progress. We hope the flex posts and other design changes make you feel safer when the bridge reopens to full beneficial use, and we are eager to see what further improvements we can achieve by continuing to work together. Momentum is on our side.

Two Days Left To Register To Vote In Cambridge!

From the email:

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Are you registered to vote? The last day for Cambridge municipal election registration is this Wednesday, October 18 at 8pm.

Hi all,

All seats on Cambridge City Council are up for election this November 7, and the make-up of the Council is critical to making rapid progress toward safe biking infrastructure for all ages and abilities. The last day to register to vote in Cambridge municipal elections is this Wednesday, October 18 at 8pm. Spend two minutes to make sure you’re registered and send to five friends.

We know that our streets are still not safe for bikers and pedestrians, which is why CBS has laid out a bold Cambridge Bicycle Safety Platform requiring a clear timeline for fast-tracked implementation of the 20 miles of protected lanes called for in the city’s Bike Plan.To get the platform implemented and not take out the lanes we already have, we need councillors good on bikes, and that means we all need to vote!

Here are some of the Council policy orders that kick-started the last year’s pop-up protected lanes. We need many more.

Here is what we need to do before Wednesday:

1.  Check if you are registered to vote, and if not: Register yourself (unless you have a Mass drivers license, you have to print and mail or deliver in person)Send or deliver the signed form to: Cambridge Election Commission, 51 Inman St., Cambridge, MA 02139.

2.  Sign up to be reminded on election day to get out and vote. You can also join our facebook registration event to be reminded and share with your friends. If you know you will be out of town, you have to register in advance for an absentee ballot.

3. Forward this to 5 Cambridge friends.

(If you are a student, first-time voter, or registered in another state for national elections, this FAQ by MIT is super helpful.)

CBS has published statements of candidate signers to our platform, and will be publishing good actions and statements by candidates on our website and facebook page.

Action: Ask Council Candidates To Sign Onto The Bike Safety Platform

From the email:

Contact City Council candidates and ask them to sign onto the Cambridge Bicycle Safety platform (text below) urging a more aggressive implementation of the 20 miles of protected lanes called for in the City’s Bike Plan, along with a specific timeline.

Friends,

What a tough yet inspiring year it has been for those of us who bike in and around Cambridge. After the tragic deaths of Amanda Phillips and Joe Lavins in 2016, thousands of Cambridge residents signed our petition calling for safer streets. The city responded by installing several new protected lanes, bringing the total to 4 miles throughout the Cambridge.

Unfortunately these segments remain disjointed and no clear plan for the future exists. To make matters worse, the latest update from city officials for today’s City Council meeting indicates they are only exploring one new segment of protected lanes (along Mass Ave) and provides no timeline for implementation. This simply does not meet the urgency that is required to avoid future tragedies and meet the city’s equity, Vision Zero, and climate neutrality goals.

Our streets still aren’t safe:

  • First responder data show a 23% increase in bicycle crashes in 2016 even as total crashes in the city have slightly decreased (see note below).
  • First responders are called to a crash involving a vehicle and bike every other day.
  • Intentional violence by road rage drivers is now commonplace due to poor street design.

Protected lanes are overwhelmingly popular and effective:

  • Over 3,000 people signed a petition calling for a protected network in Cambridge and hundreds more have sent thank you notes after new lanes were installed.
  • Participatory budgeting shows broad, continued support through a democratic process.
  • Protection and separation are the only ways to provide a safe space for people of all ages and abilities to bike. Safe spaces for biking are proven to result in higher numbers of bicyclists, helping the city achieve the mode shift necessary to reduce car dependency.
  • The number of young or inexperienced bicyclists is increasing: high school students in Cambridge counted more than 350 bicycles parked at the school earlier this year, and the high school athletes often use bikes to get from school to practice locations and home.

Cambridge is having municipal elections on November 7, and the make-up of the City Council will play a large role in the roll-out of badly needed infrastructure. This week we are asking all candidates to sign onto the Cambridge Bicycle Safety platform (see text below) urging a more aggressive implementation of the 20 miles of protected lanes called for in the City’s Bike Plan, along with a specific timeline.

Action alert – please take all three of these actions:

  1. Contact City Councillors and City Council candidates and encourage them to sign onto our election platform. Click here to email all council candidates at once. A quick email asking them to support the platform and a few words about why it matters to you will be perfect. If that link doesn’t work for you, a spreadsheet with Council candidates’ contact info is available here. Please copy info@cambridgebikesafety.org on your email.

  2. Attend the Climate Resilience Candidates Forum tomorrow evening (Tuesday, September 26, 6:30-9pm) and ask candidates to support making our streets safe for all users, the platform and improvements to safety on our streets.

  3. Register yourself to vote right now (deadline is soon). If you are already registered or are ineligible, please tell a friend to do so.

We’ll be updating you all soon with information regarding the candidates who signed our pledge, as well as summaries of those who responded to the Vision Zero election questionnaire we co-sponsored with the Vision Zero Massachusetts Coalition. (The full questionnaire responses are available here.)

As we head into this election season, it’ll be especially important to raise our voices and speak out for safer streets and quicker action. We are grateful for the progress that has been made, but know that much more needs to be done – and at a much faster pace – if we are to avoid future tragedies and encourage people of all ages and abilities to travel safely through the city by bike.

Note regarding crash data: Police Department crash data for 2015-2016 were downloaded from Cambridge Open Data (https://data.cambridgema.gov/). This data set is likely incomplete and does not include crashes for which first responders were not called.

Sincerely,
The CBS Core Team

Cambridge Bicycle Safety Platform for the 2017 Council Election

There are over 200 miles of streets in Cambridge. The 2015 Bicycle Plan calls for protected bike lanes on approximately 20 miles of major thoroughfares to create a safe, city-wide protected network that serves residents of all ages and abilities. Approximately 4 miles of these protected bike lanes have been installed. I will vote for a municipal ordinance that requires the city to install at least 4 miles of pop-up protected bike lanes each year until the city-wide protected network is complete and to install permanent protected bike lanes when the streets specified as part of the city-wide protected network are reconstructed.

Taiwan’s complete bike exports down more than 18 percent in 2017

But the country's e-bike exports are on the rise and average unit price continues to increase. FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, Germany — Export figures supplied by Taiwan’s Ministry of Finance shared at a press conference organized by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) on day two of Eurobike paint a rather bleak picture. The country’s complete bike exports, including e-bikes, are down 18.45 percent for the first half of 2017

Your Hard Work Paid Off!

from the email:

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We emailed, we called, we showed up – and we won! Due to the tremendous support for protected bicycle lanes over the past 3 weeks–in emails, calls, and in-person testimonies–on Monday, August 7, the City Council decided to remove the original language of the proposed order #191 O-14 which would have halted further progress on the roll-out of bicycle lanes. Your involvement made a big difference, so thank you.

Because of the over 300 emails and 2 hours of public testimony, the order was modified to call for increased communication by the City during the roll-out of projects without a halt in implementation. We have heard from several people in the public sector that this change would not have been possible without our steadfast, collective vocal advocacy for safer streets.

What’s next? There are two events this week as well as various projects across the city. We’ll list the projects at the end of the email.

Cambridge Street Inaugural Bike Ride

This will be the longest stretch of protection on a major Cambridge artery, and a crucial step towards a network of protected infrastructure for all ages and abilities. So, let’s ride!

Meet neighbors and join in an inaugural bike ride, a local business raffle kick-off, some snacks and music! Share your thoughts on what streets should be prioritized next!

Note: City councilors and new candidates will be there. This is a chance to meet some of them in advance of this fall’s election. Let’s show them how much support there is for safe infrastructure!

WHENSaturday, Aug 26 2-4pm. First ride kickoff at 2:30pm, other groups as more people arrive!

WHERE: Plaza in front of Fitzgerald Theater at CRLS (between Irving & Trowbridge Streets on Cambridge St)

RSVP & share

North Cambridge

The final meeting for the bicycle lanes on North Mass Ave is next Monday, August 28. Given recent scrutiny due to Brattle Street, it is crucial to show up and ensure that the project goes through. As we wrote in our letter to the city, while these lanes are not protected, they will be a huge improvement over the status quo. We also made suggestions to improve their design and your continued outreach to both the community and the City will support the City to implement safer solutions for this section of busy Mass Ave.

These lanes could go in as early as this fall if there’s enough public support.

WHENMonday, August 28, 6:00 – 8:00pm

WHERE: Trolley Square Apartments Community Room, 8 Cameron Ave

RSVP & share

Defend Protected Bike Lanes In Cambridge From Being Removed!

from the email:

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This Monday, August 7th, the Cambridge City Council will vote on a policy order which could put a moratorium on all new “pop-up” protected bike lanes.

Earlier this month, Cambridge installed a new 2-way protected bike lane on Brattle Street in Harvard Square that was proposed during participatory budgeting. The new design has dramatically transformed Brattle St into a slower, safer street for all users, especially bicyclists and pedestrians. For the first time there is now a safe route in and out of Harvard Sq for people of all ages and abilities to ride a bike, allowing them to avoid the other streets where they’d have to ride in motor vehicle traffic.

Unfortunately, the Harvard Square Business Association has begun an active and unfounded opposition campaign to try and get the protected bike lanes on Brattle St removed, and have taken their fight to the city council.

Three councilors (Simmons, Toomey, and Maher) have sponsored a policy order for Monday’s agenda that would stop all work on all new “pop-up” protected bike lanes, until City staff have met with every single Business Association in Cambridge.

Passage of this order could dramatically delay installation of all planned protected bike lanes and threatens the City’s ability to install and construct new lanes like the ones recently installed on Mass Ave, and the lanes on Cambridge Street west of Inman Square slated for installation soon.

We need to show up and speak up in favor of safer streets! The Cambridge City Council needs to see that an overwhelming number of people support protected bike lanes, and they shouldn’t cave to the pressure of a few dissenting voices.

We can all work together to address reasonable concerns with the Brattle Street design, and city staff are working to make small changes and address concerns, but eliminating the protected bike lane and delaying the implementation of more protected bike lanes is unacceptable. Just yesterday, a cyclist was hit in Harvard Square, which shows the immediate need for protection.

Action items:

  • Write to the city council right now (council@cambridgema.gov, and please copy info@cambridgebikesafety.org and info@bostoncyclistsunion.org) and ask them to vote against order O-14 on Brattle St.
    If you are a Cambridge resident, we suggest mentioning that voting against policy orders like this is important for getting your vote and that you’ll pay attention to how the vote turns out. Please be polite!
  • Show up at the city council meeting this Monday and speak out encouraging the council to vote against this policy order.
    Note the unusual location:

    • When: Monday, August 7, 5:30pm
    • Where: Dr. Henrietta S. Attles Meeting Room, Cambridge Rindge and Latin School, 459 Broadway
    • What: Attend and speak against Policy Order O-14

      You can sign up to speak by calling the City Council office at 617-349-4280 on Monday between 9:00am and 3:00pm, or by signing up in person between 5:00pm and 6:00 pm. If you come to the meeting late, you can usually speak by responding to an invitation to speak at the end of public comment.

  • Contact local businesses in Harvard Square and speak with them about why the lanes are important. Be respectful and ask local business owners to support the installation of the bike lanes and speak out against the HSBA’s opposition. After you’ve contacted a business, please send a quick note to us at info@cambridgebikesafety.org and let us know how it went. Also, if you personally work or own a business in Harvard Square, please get in touch with us – we need your active support on this.

Last, we want the Harvard Square Business Association to see that bikes are GOOD for business! Go to Harvard Square businesses this weekend, make a purchase, and post on instagram or twitter. Use the hashtags #boughtbybike and #saferbrattle, and be sure to tweet at or tag us (@bostonbikeunion / @cambridgebikesafety) as well as the Harvard Square Business Association (@HarvardSquare). We will amplify and retweet, and hope that you do, too!

Industry innovators honored at 6th annual d&i awards ceremony

TAIPEI (BRAIN) — Since being added to the Taipei Cycle Show in 2012, the d&i awards have recognized innovating design from all corners of the industry, including products in four categories. This year’s 57 winners were honored at the Taipei Cycle Show’s pre-show ceremony organized by the Taiwan Bicycle Association and Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), which puts on the trade show

By admin on March 21, 2017 | Bike News
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Taipei Cycle Show holds first-ever demo event

TAIPEI (BRAIN) — The Taipei Cycle Show kicked off a day earlier this year with an off-site demo — a first in the show’s 30-year history. Held on Tuesday, March 21, the demo attracted 30 brands and a mix of retailers, buyers and consumers looking to try everything from e-bikes and folding bikes to dropper posts and groupsets. The Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) added the demo event to give show attendees a chance to try product at a more spacious venue, the Hua-Zhong Campsite in Taipei

Organizers expect strong turnout at sold-out 2017 Taipei Cycle Show

TAIPEI, Taiwan (BRAIN) — Despite some challenges facing Taiwan’s bicycle market, including a nearly 30 percent drop in exports reported in 2016, the outlook for the 2017 Taipei International Cycle Show, which starts Wednesday and runs through Saturday at Nangang Exhibition Center, remains relatively positive. According to the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), which organizes the show, vendor registration is on par with the past couple of years and is sold out with 1,115 exhibitors occupying 3,340 booths, plus a wait list. Still, TAITRA is taking steps to ensure the show’s vitality and relevance in the face of an uncertain future

Trips for Kids founder Marilyn Price to retire

SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (BRAIN) — Marilyn Price, the founder of the Trips for Kids organization, will retire as that group’s executive director at the end of the year. She will continue on the group’s board of directors as founder and ambassador