Commuting

A Matter of Civility - From BikeDenver

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From our Friends at BikeDenver.org
Our Safety on Denver’s Roads & Trails is at Stake

It’s been a great summer for biking in Denver. Whether you ride a few times a year or ride to work every day, you know that biking is booming in Denver.

Bike commuting numbers rose to exceed 4 times the national average, and we also saw increases in the number of bike events and in participation in events like the Denver Century Ride, Tour de Fat, and USA Pro Challenge. From bike shops to B-cycle, every bike indicator in Denver is rising.

This summer also saw some growing pains and re-introduced us to existing challenges. We heard a lot of frustration from people who walk, bike and drive about unsafe behaviors. Complaints ran the gamut from bicyclists running red lights, incidents of extreme harassment by motorists, pedestrians feeling threatened by bicyclists on sidewalks and trails, and just about everyone (bikes, cars, joggers and even scooters) using bike lanes improperly.

International Walk and Bike to School Day is Oct. 3!

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (Oct. 1, 2012) — On Wednesday, Oct. 3, thousands of students, parents and communities representing more than 3,300 schools across the United Sates will walk and bicycle to school to celebrate International Walk to School Day. This one-day event is part of an international effort to encourage more families to get out of their cars and on to their feet to enjoy the many benefits of safely walking and bicycling to school.

“Walk to School Day continues to inspire community-grown events that celebrate health, safety and a sense of community,” said Lauren Marchetti, director of the National Center for Safe Routes to School, which serves as the coordinating agency for the event. “Often, this one-day event becomes the catalyst to larger commitments and permanent improvements that make walking and bicycling to school safer transportation options year round.”

Boulder Green Streets Presents Ciclovia 2012 this Sunday

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Boulder Ciclovia Map

Boulder Green Streets and the City of Boulder will present the third annual Boulder Ciclovia, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 16. The Ciclovia transforms nearly three miles of Boulder’s streets into a car-free public space for the community to engage in healthy, active, sustainable activities.

Two major activity centers connect the route: Pearl Street between 15th and 20th streets, and the North Boulder Recreation Center at 3170 Broadway. Activities will be free and include live music, dance, arts, fitness and recreation. There will also be opportunities to learn about local sustainability efforts, enjoy local and natural foods, and explore outdoor adventure gear and more.

“This event is a fantastic opportunity to experience our streets in a new way—free from cars and full of community. Come on out on Sunday, Sept. 16, to be a part of the global Ciclovia movement, play in the streets, and help make our community healthier, safer, more livable and fun,” said Karta Elise Hassler, education and outreach coordinator for the city’s Local Environmental Action Division. “Ride, roll or stroll down and leave your car behind.”

Learn more at http://bouldergreenstreets.org/

Green lanes are coming to Boulder

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If the Stones were to perform at Folsom Field today would they change their lyrics to say. "I see a black road and I want it painted Green". OK, so that wasn't funny but green lanes are being experimented with in Boulder as assumed earlier this week. Full details from on this are in the Boulder Daily this week.

From the Daily Camera

The city transportation department applied the initial bright green treatments -- which cost around $2,300 a piece -- at the intersections of Folsom Street and Canyon Boulevard, and Folsom and Pearl Street. The Safe Streets Boulder study, released by the city in February, found these two intersections had some of the highest rates of vehicle collisions with bikes and pedestrians in the city.

Between January 2008 and October 2011, the two locations had a combined 17 collisions, according to the study.

In these two locations, Cowern said drivers turning right often don't see a cyclist in the bike lane next to them and end up "hooking" in front of a cyclist, who must try to avoid hitting or being struck by the moving vehicle.

Boulder Valley School District Transportation Dept. is an Innovative Leader in Safe Routes to School

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The Boulder Valley School District's Transportation Department is working hard to reduce the number of car trips to and from school. From starting a bicycle education program in P.E. classes for 5th and 6th graders, called BLAST, to inventing the Trip Tracker program that rewards students for using alternative transportation to school, including biking, walking, taking the bus and carpooling, by giving them trip tracker dollars (redeemable at several local businesses) for every trip to and from school that does not involve a single family in one car. They are also producing interactive maps for participating schools, to help parents organize car pools, bike pools, and walking school buses in their neighborhoods. BVSD is also working hard to get faculty and staff members involved with its Eco Pass program, so they can take the bus to and from work.

BVSD is certainly on the cutting edge of the alternative transportation movement and has been a huge supporter of the Safe Routes to School initiatives. In fact, two of its elementary schools, Heatherwood and Bear Creek, received the James L. Oberstar award for Excellence in SRTS. This award has only been given out six times across the nation and BVSD has won it twice. Kris and Amy Thompson of 303Cycling, have worked extensively with Peter Hurst, Landon Hilliard and Julie Ireland of the BVSD transportation department in developing the award-winning program at Heatherwood and can truly say their vision and enthusiasm is excellent. In fact, Heatherwood would never have had a SRTS program had the BVSD not directly approached the school to start one. On that note, is district level support key to successful SRTS programs at individual schools? Dave Cowan, of the National Partnership for Safe Routes to School addresses that very question in his recent blog where Dave shares his thoughts on the critical relationship between individual schools at their districts:

Institutionalizing Safe Routes to School must include close partnerships with both the district and individual schools. It is our role as advocates to help align supportive messaging and improve policies regarding walking and bicycling to school between district, school and the rest of the community. Today would be a good day to find out where your district stands – your expertise might just be what will tip the scale.

This Saturday's Tour de Fat in Denver to Benefit Bike Denver and Denver Cruisers

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From New Belgium: New Belgium Brewing’s cycling circus, Tour de Fat, is coming back to Denver for one day on Saturday, September 8 at City Park. Tour de Fat rookies and veterans alike are encouraged to grab a bike and join us for a whimsical day of entertainment and two-wheeled revelry, all while raising money for Bike Denver and Denver Cruisers.
For those who haven’t experienced Tour de Fat, it is a thrilling rite of passage that includes an unparalleled costumed bicycle parade, New Belgium beer, eccentric entertainment, local food, unusual bike contests and much more.

The Bike Parade begins at 10 am from the West side of City Park, but be there early to register.

The pinnacle of Tour de Fat is the ceremonious car-for-bike trade. At each Tour de Fat, one person becomes the center of the show as he or she gets up on stage, hands over car keys, and pledges to live one year car-free. Tour de Fat is now seeking volunteers to accept the swapper challenge. Each car-for-bike swapper will choose a local bike shop to help them turn their $2,250.00 budget into their ultimate car-replacement commuter bike. The cars will be auctioned by Vehicles for Charity, with proceeds to benefit local cycling organizations.

Start a Safe Routes to School Program at your Local School - CDOT Announces Funding Opportunity

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Announcing call for Safe Routes to School Applications & Encouragement for Walk to School Day Events

STATEWIDE – The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is now accepting applications for Colorado’s 2013 Safe Routes to School (SRTS) funding. Awards for both non-infrastructure (education) and infrastructure (capital) projects are available. The goal of SRTS programs are to provide education to get more kids walking and bicycling where it is safe and to fix conditions where it is not safe.

Eligible applicants include schools, school districts, cities, counties, tribal entity, and/or any other local or regional government entity. Non-profits may apply by partnering with any of the above entities.

Colorado has one of the most sustainable SRTS programs in the nation. Each SRTS project selected must demonstrate in the application a strong commitment to program sustainability and ensure their SRTS efforts will live on long after their grant is concluded. SRTS grants are also performance based and before and after results are reported.

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