MAGAZINE OF THE LEAGUE OF AMERICAN BICYCLISTS • WINTER 2019 ISSUE
LARED O, TX D RA W S U P A B L U E P R I N T FO R B ET T E R B I C Y C L I N G
BI KE ACCESS
F A C I LI TATIN G C O NV ERSATION
LARE DO COM M U NI T Y E N G A G EM ENT
BI KE PAR KI NG I MPR OVED I NF R ASTR UCTUR E
IN THIS ISSUE:
HOW BICYCLE FRIENDLY IS YOUR STATE? • EQUITY: THE SIXTH ‘E’ • FEDERAL ADVOCACY UPDATE SMART CYCLING: THE IMPACT OF BIKE EDUCATION • NATIONAL BIKE SUMMIT 2020 PREVIEW
IN THIS ISSUE AMERICAN BICYCLIST • WINTER 2019 Laredo Rising Platinum-level Bicycle
Friendly Communities aren’t built in a day. Learn how Laredo, Texas, is laying the foundations for better bicycling based on their Honorable Mention award.
Bicycle Friendly States
State-owned roadways are some of the most dangerous for people biking and walking. As we track states’ progress, where are states falling behind?
15 Equity: The Sixth E
“For everyone” is the key element of our mission to build a more Bicycle Friendly America. It means making equity a lens through which we view all of our work.
Connecting Generations by Bike In places across the
country, bike clubs are coming up with ways to expand their activities. Cycling Without Age chapters are just one way clubs are bringing bike joy to many.
viewpoint 2 Improving Lives and Communities through Building a Bicycle Friendly America Bill Nesper, Executive Director
federal advocacy 2 8 Building Coalitions to Get Bipartisan Support for Better Biking Caron Whitaker
e d u c at i o n 6 Smart Cycling: The Impact of Bike Education Alison Dewey
n at i o n a l b i k e s u m m i t 3 0 2020 Summit Preview Lauren Jenkins
Editor: Lauren Jenkins, Communications Director
Design & Layout: Paul Halupka | ha-lup-ka.com
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IMPROVING LIVES AND COMMUNITIES THROUGH BUILDING A BICYCLE FRIENDLY AMERICA
ian : Br Photo
BY BILL NESPER
As bicycling advocates and educators, we spend a lot of time talking about how to make bicycling better—and miss the power of the why we are all doing this. In the last issue, we shared the core shifts the League is undertaking in our new strategic plan. To be most effective in building a bicycle-friendly America for everyone, we must connect the positive outcomes of bicycling to broader community goals. Our communities, our country, and our world face challenges that could be solved by making bicycling better for all. Every time you get on a bike you are protecting the environment, putting less impact on community resources, and improving public health. We are thinking globally and biking locally. It’s important not to lose the other why in all of this. Yes, we are improving our own lives and those of anyone that gets on a bike. I bike not just because it’s cheaper and healthier, but also because it makes me happy. It brings joy to my days even if there’s a headwind. Giving people access to better biking will mean more joy and more miles pedaled towards the goals we share. We have a lot of work to do together to make it an easy choice for people to go by bike for recreation and transportation. I’m lucky to live in a Bicycle Friendly Community thanks to the people who show up to make it even better from advocates to agency staff. This community wouldn’t be as accessible without funding and good design standards paired with policies and
programs and complemented by concerted efforts to offer bicycling education, to build a stronger bicycling culture through rides and events, and to create a connected bicycling network that makes bicycling a real option in every neighborhood. I am so proud to work with an incredible group of people on staff, united with members like you and more than 150,000 advocates, educators, business leaders, and decisionmakers all devoted to transforming lives and communities through bicycling. You can see how this partnership works and how we must continue to grow it throughout this issue of American Bicyclist. Whether it’s starting the Bicycle Friendly Business application, or setting up a Smart Cycling class, or responding to an action alert, we thank you for doing your part. As we look to the new year, I encourage you to consider joining us at the National Bike Summit in March. This annual gathering of our broad bicycling movement is focused on speaking with one voice to Congress and providing the tools to strengthen local advocacy. In 2019, we saw all of our asks get into the Senate’s version of the next transportation bill. In 2020, we will be pressing forward towards better bicycling and safe streets for everyone. We can only do this work of transformation together. Thanks for all you do and for riding with the League!
“AS BICYCLING ADVOCATES AND EDUCATORS, WE SPEND A LOT OF TIME TALKING ABOUT HOW TO MAKE BICYCLING BETTER...
AND CAN MISS THE POWER OF THE WHY...
WE ARE ALL DOING THIS.“ Children at Aiton Elementary School in Washington, DC, get to practice biking skills on bikes and in a low-stress traffic garden. Photos: League of American Bicyclists
AARP is helping to make streets safe (and “complete”) for drivers, riders, pedestrians and bicyclists of all ages.
Find free livability resources, tools and publications: AARP.org/Livable Subscribe to the free, weekly, awardwinning AARP Livable Communities e-Newsletter: Text LIVABLE to 50757
AARP GRANTS AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE AT WORK: A “pop-up” bike lane in Wilmette, Illinois. Solar-signage in Wayne, Maine. A Complete Streets demonstration in Fort Wayne, Indiana, showing (1) a one-way street with curbside parking (2) sample landscaping for capturing stormwater (3) a parking lane safety buffer (4) a wide “limitless lane” for cyclists, wheelchair users, joggers and others (5) a crosswalk and (6) a sidewalk far from traffic.
E D U C AT I O N
SMART CYCLING: THE IMPACT OF BIKE EDUCATION BY ALISON DEWEY
More than 3,000 active League Cycling Instructors teach Smart Cycling classes across the country. Each class gives more and more people the confidence to go out and ride.
H E R E ’ S W H AT N E W R I D E R S H AV E T O S AY A B O U T O U R L C I s A N D T H E S M A R T C YC L I N G P R O G R A M :
“My husband and I learned so much from it, especially during the road portion as we put our new skills to the test. I would highly recommend the class and almost feel like it’s a necessity for anyone who enjoys cycling.”
said they will ride more than they did before taking the class
would recommend the class to a friend
“Warren made our class enjoyable in addition to helping each student to become more proficient and safe on their bicycles. I will recommend this class and your written online course to everyone.”
“Better than I expected. Wish I had taken it years ago. The practice session with cones in the parking lot was brilliant.”
League bike educators learn bike skills drills that will give students the confidence to go by bike more often. Photos: Deltrece Daniels
“I consider myself a confident biker, but after the class, I am more likely to ride with confidence than I was before.”
“Class was great. Made me a better driver too!”
VISIT BIKELEAGUE.ORG/RIDESMART Enjoy tons of useful tips on riding safely and maintaining your bicycle Find a Smart Cycling class near you to improve your skills and confidence Connect with other advocates in your area Peruse a huge selection of FREE high-quality Smart Cycling videos Purchase a Quick Guide or Smart Cycling Manual (in English or Spanish!) for yourself or your club, team, or organization — available a la carte or with bulk discounts
C R E AT I N G A B I C Y C L E F R I E N D LY A M E R I C A
LAREDO, TX DRAWS UP A BLUEPRINT FOR BETTER BICYCLING B Y R E G I NA P O RT I L L O, A L A R E D O B I K E A DV O CAT E
The border city of Laredo, Texas has seen notable strides in its bicycle infrastructure, facilities, and programs over the past couple of years, and advocacy has been a major catalyst.
If you just looked at the data on biking in Texas, you wouldn’t see the diverse experiences and increasing opportunities for bicycling that advocates across the state are creating. In Laredo, Texas, where federal data says just 0.2% of all commuters go by bike, it’s the dedication of individuals and collaborative institutions who together are building a more equitable transportation system to meet the needs of everyone. During the city’s comprehensive plan update three years ago, a riveting data point was shared with the public: Laredo’s low-income
population spends one third of their income on transportation costs—twice as much as the national average. At the same time, Laredo consistently ranked as one of the unhealthiest cities in the U.S., with staggering obesity and diabetes rates. Throughout public meetings on Viva Laredo, the comprehensive plan update, the community continuously expressed a desire to see more complete streets that were equitable for walking, biking, and other forms of active transportation. The community saw that creating a bicycle friendly culture would not only be helpful for their health but also for household economics. Since May 2017, Laredo city officials and staff have actively collaborated with the local advocacy group, Bike Laredo, to advance alternate methods of transportation for all, especially those who may not have access to cars. Bike Laredo was formed under the Mayor’s Wellness Council as a result of the comprehensive plan update, and is a platform where local representatives from public, private and academic sectors meet at least once a month. Continued on Page 11 >>
Laredo has a number of “invisible” commuters whose experience is often left out of conversations about transportation. Photo: Bike Laredo
Photo: Bike Laredo
BICYCLE FRIENDLY COMMUNITY PROFILE: LAREDO, TX C I T Y S N A P S H OT: Population:
Current Bicycle Friendly Community Status:
Honorable Mention, Spring 2018
B I C YC L E F R I E N D LY B U S I N E S S E S : Altgelt Law Office, PC | 5 employees Silver-level BFB since Summer 2018 Frank Architects Inc. | 11 employees Silver-level BFB since Spring 2018
ADVOCACY O R G A N I Z AT I O N S :
Bike Texas biketexas.org
# OF LEAGUE C YC L I N G INSTRUCTORS:
“Since the inception of Bike Laredo,
we have noticed increased support from local and state government towards a diverse transportation system with multiple mobility options that are safe, efficient, and convenient for all commuters. There was a partnership between our state Department of Transportation and the local government for the creation of bike lanes in a highly trafficked street by cyclists. In addition, there have been bi-monthly critical mass rides, otherwise known as Glow Rides, in the community. The first event started with over 35 riders, and the last event had over 80 riders. In addition to these critical mass rides, there has been an increase in weekly urban rides by cycling enthusiasts and people who wouldn’t otherwise choose to get on a bike before these community-oriented events. We have noticed an increased energy towards cycling-related activities and this has become most evident since the inception of Bike Laredo and the City’s participation and involvement with it.” —LAREDO’S 2018 HONORABLE MENTION BFC APPLICATION
Bike Laredo “glow rides” bring riders of all ages together around the joy of bicycling. Photo: Bike Laredo
In the summer of 2018, our city applied to be recognized as a Bicycle Friendly Community and received our first report card from the League. Earning an honorable mention, the feedback we got became our blueprint for moving forward and gave us insight into the areas we needed to address along with specific objectives to get us there. Increasing bike education opportunities in Laredo, through the Smart Cycling and LCI programs, was one of those objectives. Preston Tyree, a seasoned League Cycling Coach located in Austin, Texas, partnered with us to bring those programs to Laredo. He also brought with him best practices and inspiration that would empower 11 local advocates to become our city’s first ever LCIs. That group is now preparing to teach children, adults, and seniors in the city and surrounding areas the principles of bicycling and bicycling safety.
In order to reach more of Laredo’s bicyclists with skills and safety information, Bike Laredo organized a seminar to train new League Cycling Instructors. This course featured Preston Tyree, League Cycling Coach, pictured in blue above. Photos on this page: Bike Laredo
The Bicycle Friendly Community report card and Smart Cycling program have inspired our community and equipped us to continue growing in strategic ways. Over the past couple of years, we have seen our bicycling culture evolve as a result of both the community’s advocacy and support from local government. If you cruise through our city, you’ll see 3-foot rule signage, bike racks on public transit buses, a bright green bike lane, and numerous bike repair stations. Beyond the visible, there are multiple city ordinances that have been adopted and have literally paved the way to additional infrastructure and programming. There are three evolutions we’ve witnessed. First, there is more awareness of existing bicyclists. Second, public and private agencies increasingly recognize the need to invest in mobility options beyond motor vehicles. Third, people of all backgrounds are beginning to embrace the health and economic benefits of bicycling—even if they’re not ready to jump on a bike just yet. There’s a revolution brewing in Laredo, and it will not be motorized.
S P OT L I G H T: FROM FRANK ARCHITECTS INC’S 2 0 1 8 S I LV E R B F B A P P L I C AT I O N : “Our firm houses the local bicycle advocacy organization, Bike Laredo. Its main role is to diversify mobility options and make sure our city has safe routes for the disenfranchised. As a border city on the United StatesMexico border, many of our bike commuters are immigrants who cross the bridge daily for work in the United States.
“As a border city on the United States-Mexico border, many of our bike commuters are immigrants who cross the bridge daily for work in the United States.”
A lot of times, riding a bicycle is not a choice, but the only option available to get to work. With this in mind, Frank Architects has served as a principal organizer in advocating to City Council for the rights of these commuters. Working through Bike Laredo and in conjunction with the local government, we were able to get bike lanes on one of the most trafficked streets by bike commuters. We are also working on placing bike corrals in underprivileged neighborhoods, including the city's plazas where most bike commuters often leave bikes locked to light posts and stop signs due to a lack of bike-parking infrastructure.”
Photo: Bike Laredo
Photo: Bike Laredo
REGINA’S TIPS FOR GRASSROOTS BIKE ADVOCACY Find three to five people who are just as passionate as you are about creating a Bicycle Friendly Community. Get involved with city officials and staff and learn about existing funding or programs. Then work together with them to plan, plan, plan.
M A N U A L PA R A U N CICLISMO SEGURO N O W AVA I L A B L E ! Recognizing that there is a large population of bicyclists who may be interested in learning and teaching bike skills and may benefit most from technical classes like Smart Cycling taught in their native language, the League is thrilled to now offer our Smart Cycling Manual in Spanish.
Use a program like Bicycle Friendly America to guide you. Contact city governments or bike advocacy groups from other cities when you feel stuck. Someone, somewhere has tried it before. Pick and choose what will work for your community, and don’t stop pedaling!
MANUAL PARA UN
A huge thank you goes to our partners at Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, T.R.U.S.T South L.A., ActiveSGV, and the National Alliance for Hispanic Health for their incredible work, dedication and collaboration in bringing life to the Manual para un Ciclismo Seguro. MANUAL PARA UN CICLISMO SEGURO
Discover more of our Smart Cycling materials online: bikeleague.org/smartcyclingresources 13
DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT on #GivingTuesday! The Leagueâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s board of directors is matching all gifts made to the League on December 3. For one day only, ride twice the distance!
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B I C Y C L E F R I E N D LY A M E R I C A
BICYCLE FRIENDLY STATES 2019:
GRADING THE NATION BY KEN MCLEOD
Created in 2008, the Bicycle Friendly State program ranks states based on laws, policies, data, survey responses, and other indicators. Over two decades, states have improved... but still must do more.
States are crucial actors in enabling and enacting safe environments for people biking and walking. Governors can provide leadership to state agencies on supporting active transportation, promote tourism or economic development around bicycling, or champion legislation that addresses funding or other needs. Legislatures can pass laws that protect people on our nation’s roadways, provide clear rules of the road, and ensure that state agencies have both a mandate and the funding to pursue safe and complete bicycling networks. There is also a less obvious, but critical actor for the safety of people biking and walking: state Departments of Transportation. When the League crunches the numbers, most of our Bicycle Friendly State ranking is based
upon the reported actions of state DOTs, which can be dramatically different. In some states, the DOT owns less than 10 percent of roadways in the state and in others they own more than 80 percent. That’s important because nationally, 45 percent of bicyclist fatalities occur on state-owned roadways. In at least 43 states, the percentage of bicyclist fatalities on state-owned roads is higher than the percentage of roads owned by the state. This data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration – reported for the first time from 2015-2017 – shows that traffic safety goals such as Vision Zero or Toward Zero Deaths will not be achievable without state DOTs taking a hard look at their current practices that lead bicyclist fatalities to be over-represented on their roadways.
B I C YC L E F R I E N D LY A C T I O N S I N A L L 5 0 S TAT E S While the data on bicyclist fatalities paints a troubling picture, the League is pleased to report that every state is taking action to improve bicycling. In 2017, we identified five Bicycle Friendly Actions that we believe every state should take to show its commitment to improving conditions for people who bike.
Bicycle Friendly Actions Checklist for States: A Safe Passing Law A Complete Streets Action
In 2017, there were three states that didn’t have a single Bicycle Friendly Action. Now, every state has at least one and we have seen increasing action towards adopting every single type of Bicycle Friendly Action. In fact, the average state has more than three of our five Bicycle Friendly Actions and eight – California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Minnesota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington – have all five.
An Emphasis on Bicycle Safety A Recent Statewide Bike Plan A Minimum Level of Federal Funds Spent on Biking and Walking
“ . . .T H E AV E R A G E S TAT E H A S M O R E T H A N T H R E E O F O U R F I V E B I C YC L E F R I E N D LY A C T I O N S A N D E I G H T – C A L I F O R N I A , C O L O R A D O , C O N N E C T I C U T, I L L I N O I S , M I N N E S O TA , O R E G O N , P E N N S Y LVA N I A , A N D WA S H I N G T O N – H AV E A L L F I V E . ”
Number of States Completing a Bicycle Friendly Action 40
No. of States
S TAT E S , A N D T H E F E D E R A L G O V E R N M E N T, S T E P P I N G U P The increasing rate of bicyclist deaths over the last several years has not been concentrated in one city or region, with 70 percent of states seeing an increase in the rate of bicyclist deaths per bike commuter. While we need more coordinated action by states and the federal government to achieve widespread changes that make bicycling a safe and comfortable transportation option for more people, there are several promising areas of state and federal collaboration that can lead to systemic changes at state DOTs.
1. A Commitment to Vision Zero The majority of state DOTs have signed onto the Toward Zero Deaths National Strategy that calls for reducing traffic deaths by 50 percent by 2030. Achieving that would bring traffic deaths below 30,000 people per year for the first time since 1930. Thanks to the work of the League, its members, and the broader transportation safety community, each state must set a target for non-motorized serious injuries and deaths and report that to the federal government each year. Unfortunately, many states have not set their targets to reduce fatalities—instead, their targets reflect continuing the trend of increasing deaths among people biking and walking. In the most recent targets, 23 states have targeted an increase in deaths and serious injuries for people biking and walking. We need to see more states following through on their Toward Zero Deaths goals and working with the Federal Highway Administration to achieve sustained decreases in traffic fatalities for all road users.
2. Integrating Transportation and Health Our Bicycle Friendly State survey indicates that health falls behind other factors when state DOTs are prioritizing transportation investments, including bicycle and pedestrian investments. Only 16 states indicated that health factors were used to prioritize transportation investments and no state made health its only prioritization factor. Three states indicated that the only factor for prioritization was either mobility or economic development.
3. Building the Next Generation of Safe Infrastructure Since the launch of the National Association of City Transportation Officials’ Urban Bikeway Design Guide in 2011, support for better infrastructure such as Protected Bike Lanes has become widespread. Soon, it is expected that this infrastructure will be supported by American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities, which has not featured protected bike lanes since 1981. As we await the publication of the guide used by state DOTs to be released, many – but not nearly enough – states have already implemented innovative bicycle infrastructure (see chart on next page). Less than half of states in our Bicycle Friendly State survey reported having a protected or separated bike lane, or buffered bike lane, installed on a state-controlled roadway.
How Are State DOTs Prioritizing Transportation Investments? Mobility factors, such as areas with high population/employment density and proximity to transit Economic development factors, such as proximity to parks or destination trail development Transportation equity factors, such as low vehicle ownership and low income, older adult, or minority groups Health Factors, such as low rates of physical activity or high rates of diabetes or heart disease
T H E 2 0 1 9 B I C YC L E F R I E N D LY S TAT E R A N K I N G Our goal – a Bicycle Friendly America for Everyone – includes an America where state DOTs have a culture of providing safe, accessible, transportation for everyone. Our roadways should not have a persistent and high death toll for vulnerable road users, a private motor vehicle should not be a requirement for participation in society, and the health of communities should be more valued than the ability to move through them. With our 2019 Bicycle Friendly State ranking we see many states making progress, but few states showing true leadership in creating Departments of Transportation that prioritize traffic safety, public health, and safe networks for people biking. Each state’s report card shows strengths and weaknesses, provides recommendations, and can provide guidance on peer states. We hope that they inspire you and your state DOT to action.
States Reporting Installation of Innovative Bike Infrastructure Bike Box Bike Signal Head Buffered Bike Lane Protected or Separated Bike Lane 0
Dive into our Bicycle Friendly State ranking: bikeleague.org/states
“ O U R R O A D WAY S S H O U L D N O T H AV E A P E R S I S T E N T A N D H I G H D E AT H T O L L F O R V U L N E R A B L E R O A D U S E R S , A P R I VAT E M O T O R VEHICLE SHOULD NOT BE A REQUIREMENT FOR PA R T I C I PAT I O N I N S O C I E T Y, A N D T H E H E A LT H O F C O M M U N I T I E S S H O U L D B E M O R E VA L U E D T H A N T H E A B I L I T Y T O M O V E T H R O U G H T H E M .” 18
SUPPORT THE LEAGUE OF AMERICAN BICYCLISTS
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commitment to our long-term sustainability by naming the League in their wills or trusts.
With a planned gift, you can balance your personal financial goals with your interest in supporting the bike movement...
for generations to come.
Founded in 1880, the League has the longevity and national reach to add value to your planned gift, delivering the freedom and independence that only bicycling can bring.
Reach out today to learn how your estate can help further the League's missionâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and build a prosperous future for American bicycling. Contact Kevin Dekkinga
Director of Membership and Development Kevin@bikeleague.org | 202.621.5449
CONNECTING GENERATIONS BY BIKE BY KEVIN DEKKINGA
With a firm belief that people of all ages and abilities should be able to experience the joy of cycling, bike clubs are leading programs enabling the elderly to get back on a bike. In 2012, Ole Kassow wanted to help the elderly in his community get back on bicycles and reexperience the feelings of joy and freedom that are realized with the gentle wind on your face during a great bike ride. What Kassow started in Denmark is now a global program, Cycling Without Age, enhancing the lives of thousands of participants and volunteers each year in more than 40 countries around the world. Increasingly, bike clubs throughout the U.S. are starting their own chapters of Cycling Without Age, powered by club members. We spoke with Rick Nevins of Williamsburg Area Bicyclists in Williamsburg, Virginia, about how Cycling Without Age has brought the joy of cycling back to the community.
KD: How did you start getting involved with Williamsburg Area Bicyclists? RN: I joined the Williamsburg Area Bicyclists (WAB) when I retired and moved from Pennsylvania to Williamsburg in 2012. I have been an avid cyclist for about 20 years and enjoy the company of others while cycling. The Williamsburg Area Bicyclists is a very active club offering group rides almost daily, as well as other learning and social opportunities. WAB also engages in several local service projects such as helmet giveaways and support for community events such as the Pedal the Parkway, Park to Park and Bikes Out of Hibernation. I got more engaged in club leadership to “give back” and do my part to support the club. 20
KD: What appealed to you about the Cycling Without Age Program, and what was WAB’s draw to the program? RN: Every time I go for a bike ride, I feel grateful that I have the mobility to experience the joy of cycling, such as the fresh air, connecting with my local community and “feeling the wind in your hair”. As people age, some lose mobility and no longer have these opportunities. People may feel isolated and disconnected. Ole Kassow, the founder of Cycling Without Age (CWA), recognized this in his local community in Copenhagen and rented a rickshaw and began offering free rides to folks at a local nursing home. More than just going for a bike ride, Ole sought to establish relationships and give them
an opportunity to tell their story. This is such a generous act of kindness and has the potential to really impact people in a positive way!
KD: Tell me about a particularly poignant moment or story in your experience with the program.
As I considered our local community, it occurred to me that we have the perfect ingredients to bring this program to Williamsburg: Williamsburg is a popular retirement community, we have a great cycling infrastructure with safe routes in picturesque settings and we have an active cycling community.
RN: The highlight for me in the first year of operation has been getting to know some of our “regular” passengers. I had the privilege to pilot two of them at the annual Williamsburg Holiday Parade in December. Despite cool temps, Grace and Jeanette smiled from ear to ear the entire parade, waving to the crowds and clearly having a wonderful time!
A bicycle club has the opportunity to offer CWA community-wide. I thought by making CWA a club service project, we could provide a wonderful service to the community, provide volunteer opportunities (as pilots) for our members and help fulfill our club mission. Selfishly, we are also securing our future in a way – at some point we all may benefit! I was pleased that WAB leadership whole-heartedly endorsed the idea. KD: Tell me a bit about the trishaw. RN: The trishaw is a three-wheeled rickshaw with a bench seat in the front and the pilot seat in the back. The vehicle is designed for safety, comfort and ease of access. An electric assist motor makes the trishaw easy to pilot. KD: Who are your partners in the Cycling Without Age program? How did you get them on board in the first place? RN: From the beginning we have partnered with BikeWalk Williamsburg (BWW), a cycling and walking advocacy organization. BWW also saw how CWA helps satisfy their mission. Their non-profit status and insights greatly enhanced our fundraising efforts. Before we began actively fundraising, we spoke to several area retirement communities and most were very excited and supportive of our initiative. We also solicited interest from the local cycling community for pilots and found many willing volunteers.
Right: The ‘trishaw’, a three-wheeled rickshaw with an electric assist, pilots Grace and Jeanette during the Williamsburg Holiday Parade. Opposite page: Williamsburg trishaw riders enjoy the breeze on their faces.
KD: What advice would you give to other bike clubs who want to start a Cycling Without Age program? RN: I think bicycle clubs are in a great position to establish local Cycling Without Age affiliates. Bicycle clubs have members that appreciate the joy of cycling and the outdoors and typically have organizational structures and members who have the ability to manage the program and pilot the trishaws. I would encourage other clubs to consider becoming a CWA affiliate – it is rewarding, offers a great community service and can help fulfill cycling advocacy goals to promote cycling and safe routes for people of all ages and abilities.
EQUITY:ANDTHE SIXTH E IN THE DIVERSITY INCLUSION BICYCLE FRIENDLY AMERICA PROGRAM BY AMELIA NEPTUNE
For more than 20 years, the Bicycle Friendly America program has been built on the foundation of “The Five E’s”: Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation & Planning.
In 2014, as part of the League’s Equity Initiative, the League began to deliberately incorporate Equity, Diversity and Inclusion into our Bicycle Friendly America (BFA) program in pursuit of a Bicycle Friendly America for everyone. Supported by a two-year grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, League staff worked with an Equity Advisory Committee made up of advocates, academics, and practitioners, to develop Equity, Diversity and Inclusion-related questions for each of the existing “Five E” categories — ensuring that equity became a lens through which the entire Bicycle Friendly America program is viewed, rather than a standalone set of criteria to be tacked on separately.
Photo via City of Oakland
Righting the wrongs of historical inequities in transportation planning and the built environment, addressing institutional racism and discriminatory enforcement practices, building an inclusive bike culture that feels open,
accessible, safe, and welcoming to all – these and other issues deserve our attention and our action. We knew in 2014 that we didn’t have all the answers to address these challenges. As we approach 5 years of collecting equity-related responses from Bicycle Friendly America applicants, the challenges are still many and the solutions are still not always simple. “This work is important, urgent, and hard – with the problems being much more obvious than the solutions,” Gold-level Bicycle Friendly Community Oakland, California, wrote in their most recent application about their detailed efforts to address equity. With our program applicants, we are learning and listening to best practices being put into action across the country. Learn more at bikeleague.org/equity
At left: Marshall “Major” Taylor Mural with artist Refa One (left) and Tony Coleman (Bikes 4 Life) Opposite page, top: Oakland’s Scraper Bike Team & East Bay Greenway Mural Opposite page, bottom: Illustrating the subtle but critical differences between Equality and Equity. Reprinted with permission from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Photo via City of Oakland
“ [ T H E L E A G U E I S ] E N S U R I N G T H AT E Q U I T Y B E C O M E S A L E N S T H R O U G H W H I C H T H E E N T I R E B I C Y C L E F R I E N D LY A M E R I C A P R O G R A M I S V I E W E D , R AT H E R T H A N A S TA N D A L O N E S E T O F C R I T E R I A T O B E TA C K E D O N S E PA R AT E LY.”
EQUITY IN ACTION:
DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION IN THE BICYCLE FRIENDLY AMERICA PROGRAM
I D E A S F R O M O U R B I C YC L E F R I E N D LY COMMUNITIES AND BUSINESSES
WALK BIKE MASTER PLAN MARCH 17, 2017
“Our Walk/Bike Master Plan includes an Equity Action Plan, to ensure that community planning staff consider location equity in distributing walk/ bike improvements across Burlington’s neighborhoods. Planning staff do this by working with community groups to initiate conversations that deepen the understanding of the needs and priorities of populations underrepresented in Burlington’s walk/ bike advocacy community including women, New Americans, young children, and older adults.”
—Burlington, VT | Silver BFC
Photo: Dover, Kohl & Partners
“Dover-Kohl played a vital role in a county-wide bike mentorship as part of WHEELS Florida. We offered experienced bicyclists from our office to help and mentor new and inexperienced bicyclists, women, Spanish speakers, and people of all ages to feel more comfortable on their bikes.”
—Dover, Kohl & Partners | Silver BFB, 10 Employees, Coral Gables, FL
Photo: Atlanta Westside Bike Share Champions
“Atlanta's Chief Equity Officer was an essential part of creating Atlanta's Bike Share Champions program. This is a workforce development program where 10-20 people are hired to do paid parttime outreach in their community about bike share. We have focused on educating and hiring only from underserved communities. This has been an incredibly successful program.”
—Atlanta, GA | Bronze BFC
“A project in Durham works with refugees who are new to the community. The refugees receive a bike through the Durham Bike Co-op and receive training on bicycle riding in Durham and use of the local and regional bus system, including the use of bike racks.”
—Durham, NC | Bronze BFC
“West Hartford’s Department of Leisure Services partners with the Miracle League of Connecticut to teach children with disabilities to ride conventional two-wheel bicycles and become lifelong independent riders. Many of the riders have tried for years to learn to ride a bicycle without success. In just one week of the iCan Bike camp, about 80% of riders will learn to independently ride a two-wheel bike.” Photo: iCan Shine
—West Hartford, CT | Bronze BFC 25
PROUDLY SHIPPING BIKES FOR THE LEAGUE OF AMERICAN BICYCLISTS SINCE 2009
PROUDLY SUPPORTING BIKE ADVOCACY ACROSS THE COUNTRY SINCE 1996
Creating active, healthy communities
LEARN MORE AT WWW.PLANETBIKE.COM
IS IT TIME TO RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP? BIKELEAGUE.ORG / RENEW
By Graber Manufacturing, Inc.
BUILDING COALITIONS TO GET BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR BETTER BIKING B Y CA R O N W H I TA K E R
Throughout the year—from the National Bike Summit in March to testifying before Congress in April, to the introduction of legislation advancing our priority issues like safety—the League has been advocating for better biking with an eye on what lies ahead: a five-year transportation bill that will guide our nation’s spending.
Thanks to the dedicated advocacy of League members, and our work building a coalition of public health, environmental, and equity focused organizations, the first draft of the transportation bill from the Senate is great for people who bike. The new bill makes key improvements to funding programs while also including a new set of climate-related programs and bicycle-friendly policies. Not only did we get much of what the League asked for on safety and infrastructure, bicyclists will benefit from new programs regarding emission and congestion reductions. Whether it’s on our bread and butter issues like funding for bike infrastructure, or on larger issues like automated vehicles, the League
engages coalitions of likeminded organizations to get things done on behalf of people who bike. Beginning last year, the League joined with the Safe Routes National Partnership to talk with advocates, practitioners, and other stakeholders to identify how the program could work better. Then we worked with Senate leaders so they could understand the active transportation community’s perspectives. Next, we’ll continue the process with the House of Representatives. The League has found that coalition work can be the most effective and holistic way to meet our goals. It gives our members a bigger voice on Capitol Hill and helps the League effectively reach more lawmakers.
Champions in Congress for biking and walking projects like Senator Ben Cardin (left, in red) provide critical leadership as transportation discussions drive ahead. Photo: Office of Senator Ben Cardin
H O W T H E B I L L I S G R E AT F O R B I K E S TRANSPORTATION ALTERNATIVES
The TA program accounts for roughly 50 percent of all federal funding for biking and walking infrastructure. The Senate bill increases that funding from $850 million per year to $1.2 Billion per year—a 40% increase in year one, and the program will grow with inflation for the rest of the bill’s life.
SAFETY The bill adds an additional $250
million per year to safety spending, with the caveat that if a state or urbanized area has higher than average bicyclist and pedestrian fatalities, then the new funding has to be spent on bicycling and pedestrian safety improvements. There are also incentive grants for states and urban areas if they reduce their bicycle and pedestrian fatality rates.
PLANNING The bill includes a pilot program to get better modeling data to states and metropolitan and regional planning organizations—like we asked for in the COMMUTE Act. STORM RESILIENCY This bill is the first ever federal transportation bill that includes a section dedicated to the climate. While many of the programs in this section are fairly small, the mere existence of this section is a huge step forward and will be good for bikes.
Get the details on this legislation at bikeleague.org/BetterBikingBill
B OT H S I D E S O F T H E A I S L E S U P P O RT B E TT E R B I K I N G
Senator Ben Cardin, D-Maryland
Senator Roger Wicker, R-Mississippi
“I’ve been proud to champion the Transportation Alternatives Program because when we make it easier for people to commute on a bike, we are relieving traffic congestion on our roads, sending less carbon into the air and creating jobs in America. We want to keep moving in the right direction, especially for biking and public safety. There is more work to be done to better support communities and expand bike-friendly infrastructure alternatives,” said U.S. Senator Ben Cardin, Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee.
“The Transportation Alternatives Program improves public safety, quality of life, and job creation through support for non-traditional transportation projects. The targeted improvements Senator Cardin and I have proposed would give greater flexibility for smaller communities to use these resources for maximum impact,” said U.S. Senator Roger Wicker.
N AT I O N A L B I K E S U M M I T 2 0 2 0
STAND WITH US AT THE NATIONAL BIKE SUMMIT TO DEMAND SAFE STREETS FOR EVERYONE BY LAUREN JENKINS
Biking is fundamentally about joy. Biking elevates an errand or the slog to work from just another task on our to-do list to “I get to do this!” It’s why we celebrate the gift of biking every day at the League and it’s also why we fight so, so hard to make biking better—for everyone.
Because being on a bike should be about the freedom we feel, not the fear. But we have all felt it—the car passing too closely, the hypervigilance of riding in a door-zone bike lane—and the latest statistics from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration are grim: drivers killed 857 people biking in 2018, a 6.3% increase over 2017. In March 2020, the League is bringing advocates together at the 21st National Bike Summit so we can collaborate on making our shared vision of Safe Streets for Everyone a reality. In plenary and panel sessions, keynote talks, poster presentations, and expanded networking opportunities, Summit attendees will learn how to influence federal policy and how their peers across the country are confronting the public health crisis facing America: people who bike, walk, or use a wheelchair are in increasing danger on our roads, preventing more Americans from enjoying the benefits of biking and physical activity.
We’ll climb Capitol Hill together, visiting hundreds of congressional offices with a united voice demanding action and advocates are the catalyst at the federal level and the grassroots. We need you to join us for the largest grassroots gathering of people who bike. Learn more about the 2020 National Bike Summit and register to attend at bikeleague.org/summit
THANKS TO OUR 2019 CORPORATE SPONSORS
OUR MISSION is to lead the movement to create a Bicycle Friendly America for everyone. As leaders, our commitment is to listen and learn, define standards and share best practices to engage diverse communities and build a powerful, unified voice for change.
STAFF Bill Nesper
Vice President, Government Relations
Director of Membership & Development
Bicycle Friendly America Director
BOARD OF DIRECTORS Ken Podziba Chair
Karin Weisburgh Vice Chair
Max Hepp-Buchanan Secretary
Mark Thomas Treasurer
Danielle Arigoni Jim Baross Dave Belde Maria Boustead
Bob Oppliger Nicole Preston Beth St. John Mike Sewell
Harry Brull Jackie Martin Ralph Monti
Torrance Strong A.J. Zelada
American Bicyclist magazine (ISSN 0747-0371) is published by the League of American Bicyclists, Inc. to help the organization achieve its mission to educate the public and promote awareness of bicycling issues. ÂŠ2019 League of American Bicyclists. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited. Article queries should be addressed to communications@ bikeleague.org. Your submission of manuscripts, photographs or artwork is your warranty that the material in no way infringes on the rights of others and that the material may be published without additional approval. Opinions expressed by writers are their own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of the League.
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