Consider Biking Wins Biking & Walking Vacation

By Megan Odett on March 04, 2014


In December, we offered our members a simple deal: Renew by the end of the year, and you’ll be entered to win a trip from the fabulous folks at VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations.

We put the name of every organization that renewed before December 1 into a vase, and Mary Lauran did the honors of selecting a winner.

We are delighted to announce that the winner of a $2,300 bicycling or walking vacation from VBT is…

(Drumroll please)

Consider Biking of Columbus, Ohio!

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Consider Biking, a longtime member of the Alliance for Biking & Walking, was founded in 1991 to help promote bicycling in the city of Columbus. A small but mighty advocacy powerhouse, Consider Biking was instrumental in helping Columbus become the first Bicycle Friendly Community in Ohio.

Awarding this vacation is the Alliance’s way of saying “Thank you” to Consider Biking and all our member organizations for their hard work in their communities and ongoing involvement with the Alliance network. Member dues important support for the Alliance’s work to boost state and local advocates in growing the biking & walking movement across North America.

Our thanks go to VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations for providing this wonderful gift and for their longtime support of the Alliance. VBT offers deluxe, small group bicycling and walking tours worldwide, including destinations throughout Europe, Costa Rica, New Zealand, Vietnam, Thailand, Peru, Argentina, and the United States. Every VBT trip includes accommodations, meals, expert trip leaders, vehicle support and unique sightseeing and activities. VBT also includes roundtrip international airfare from over 30 U.S. cities and select Canadian cities for all overseas vacations. In 2013, VBT was rated by the readers of Travel + Leisure magazine among the “World’s Best Tour Operators” for the fourth consecutive year.

As always, our biggest thanks go to our member organizations for their hard work and dedication to bicycle and pedestrian advocacy their own communities. If you haven’t yet renewed your membership for 2014 or are considering joining for the first time, click here!

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Congratulations to the 2014 Advocacy Award Winners!

By Mary Lauran Hall on March 04, 2014


imageOn March 3, 2014, the Alliance for Biking & Walking held the sixth annual Alliance Advocacy Awards, presented by Bicycling Magazine.

Since 2009, the Alliance has solicited public nominations for the Advocacy Awards, which recognize the exceptional efforts of individuals, organizations, and business leaders in advancing active transportation in North America. Biking and walking advocacy is often behind-the-scenes work, so every year the Alliance shines a spotlight on advocates who have performed exemplary efforts in the service of better and safer active transportation.

The Alliance received 210 nominations for 2014 Advocacy Awards. Final nominees were selected by Alliance staff, and overall winners for all categories except the People’s Choice Award were chosen by a panel of past Advocacy Award winners, leaders in biking & walking advocacy, and Alliance staff.

This year, we are honored to announce the following winners.

Advocacy Organization of the Year – Bike San Diego

image Under the leadership of executive director Samantha Ollinger, this southern California advocacy organization accumulated an impressive list of accomplishments in 2013.

Thanks in part to Bike San Diego’s electoral work, candidates in the city’s fall mayoral election competed with one another over who was more bike-friendly, three out of four released a bike plan during the race, and the new mayor now regularly touts the importance bicycling for the city. The organization initiated and helped with the launch of the city’s first open streets event, CicloSDias. BikeSD was also instrumental in getting the city to adopt pro-bikeway design guidelines by becoming a member of the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO). And the metropolis has momentum to put bike friendly improvements in place soon: BikeSD led efforts to approve $200 million in regional funding for urban bike projects along key corridors.

Thanks to BikeSD’s sustained work throughout 2013, San Diego is well on the way to becoming a more bicycle-friendly city.

View all nominees for 2014 Advocacy Organization of the Year.

Advocate of the Year – Nelle Pierson

image When Bicycling Magazine named her one of 14 innovators working to change the world through biking, Nelle took the opportunity to explain her approach to broadening the base of citizens demanding better biking in the greater Washington, DC area. “We don’t have the resources for corporate marketing,” she said, “so we sell through humans and connect through people power.”

Nelle’s passion for human-to-human connection has informed her exceptional outreach and programming work over four years with the Washington Area Bicyclist Association. As WABA’s outreach coordinator and former events coordinator, she has brought huge events from budget to after-party and, most recently, designed and established the highly successful Women & Bicycles program. This new program is transforming the conversation about women and bicycling in the DC region by bringing in new riders and advocates through peer-to-peer networking.

It’s not hard to envision Nelle as the new face of bicycle advocacy: persistent, idealistic, relentlessly organized, and dedicated to resolving inequities in the bicycle movement.

View all nominees for 2014 Advocate of the Year.

Business Advocate of the Year – Kaiser Permanente

image With preventable diseases related to physical inactivity on the rise, it’s a small wonder that companies whose bottom lines depend on minimizing health care spending aren’t pouring resources into boosting everyday exercise.

Kaiser Permanente is a very notable exception. This insurance and health care provider approaches health from a holistic perspective, defining wellbeing as daily experience that reaches beyond the doctor’s office and into neighborhood streets and everyday transportation. Over the course of 2013, Kaiser Permanente invested countless staff time and well over a million dollars to expand walking health outreach and advocacy in the interest of public health. They initiated the innovative Every Body Walk Collaborative, an effort among diverse organizational partners — including America Walks, the Alliance and many state and local walking advocacy organizations — to galvanize the national walking movement.

Kaiser Permanente’s push for better walking in the United States has reached Capitol Hill and local advocacy efforts. Thanks to their support, America Walks convened the first annual National Walking Summit in Washington, DC, and Advocacy Advance — a partnership between the League of American Bicyclists and Alliance for Biking & Walking — added staff and workshops to strengthen local walking advocacy.

View all nominees for Business Advocate of the Year.

Winning Campaign of the Year – Transportation Alternatives for Citi Bike

image Their behind-the-scenes work might not have made major headlines, but Transportation Alternatives’ research, lobbying, and grassroots organizing was integral to the launch of the United States’ largest bike share system. The highly sophisticated New York City advocacy organization worked for years on the successful campaign, which came to fruition in 2013 after a series of false starts and software troubles.

After a bumpy start, Citi Bike has stolen New Yorkers’ hearts. The system’s presence in trendsetting New York has also made bicycling a regular part of the cultural conversation: “bike share blue” was the most popular color on the runway during 2013 Fashion Week, a Citi Bike rack graced a cover of The New Yorker, and the bikes made their small-screen debut in a new Comedy Central show.

Thanks to Transportation Alternatives’ advocacy, other cities have a clear model for bringing bike share to the public transport network and empowering city residents to bike for transportation.

View all nominees for 2014 Winning Campaign of the Year.

Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award – Laura Solis

imageThis award commemorates Alliance co-founder Susie Stephens, honoring her passion for biking and walking as fun and economical means of transportation. This year the award goes to Laura Solis, who brings her enthusiasm for bicycle advocacy to a dizzying array of activities: she currently serves as volunteer outreach coordinator at WE Bike NYC, is an active member of the Transportation Alternatives Bronx Committee, volunteers with Boogie Down Rides, and is the development & community outreach manager at Bike New York.

If it involves bicycles in New York City, Laura is there. Her enthusiasm and kindness have the ability to make cycling new again for experienced riders, and to make it accessible for new riders. Laura has an especially strong passion for spreading bicycling among women from low-income communities and her home borough, the Bronx. When asked about her passion for spreading bicycling, Laura said, “A machine as simple as a bicycle could inspire hope in many that find it difficult to do so for themselves.”

View all nominees for the 2014 Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award.

Bicycling Magazine People’s Choice Award – Bike East Bay for bike access on BART

imageThis award, a new category in 2014, is given to a state or local bike advocacy organization in recognition of exemplary work to improve bicycling. It is only fitting that the winner decided by popular vote on Bicycling.com was a campaign to bring better bicycling connectivity to one of the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the country: the San Francisco Bay.

The San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit System (BART) began service in 1972 with no provision for access by bicyclists — and, sure enough, the East Bay Bicycle Coalition was founded that same year with the specific goal of gaining bicycle access. Early efforts provided limited successes, but it wasn’t until 2013 that a coalition of Bay Area advocates teamed up to convince BART to authorize pilot programs for full bicycle access. Thanks to the advocacy efforts of the newly rechristened Bike East Bay, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, and Bikes on Board, these pilots resulted in winter 2013 decision to finally allow bicycles onboard BART at all hours.

Thanks to the successful campaign, Bay Area residents are able to traverse the region with their trusty steeds in tow at all hours.

View all nominees for the 2014 Bicycling Magazine People’s Choice Award.

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Webinar Recap: Finding the Right Database or CRM for Your Organization

By Mary Lauran Hall on March 03, 2014


If you’re fed up with keeping all your donations in spreadsheets, using outdated software to track volunteer hours, or trying to integrate multiple contact databases into a in a brand new system, it could be time for a good Constituent Relationship Management (CRM). On this webinar, Alliance staff and leaders from the biking & walking movement offered some advice for organizations looking to get their first CRM or replace their current system.

On a recent Mutual Aid Webinar, Alliance staff explained what tools are available to organizations looking to get their first CRM or update their current system. See below for notes from the call and a recording.

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2014 Navigating MAP-21 Workshop Dates Announced

By Mary Lauran Hall on March 03, 2014


More and more Americans want to live in communities where walking and bicycling are safe, easy, and accessible.

Cities and states are rising to the challenge by trying to invest more in walking and biking. But still, millions of dollars in potential federal funding for active transportation goes untapped ever year.

This is in part due to our nation’s history with an automobile-dominated transportation system: when the car is king, major funding streams are set up to flow to highway and road projects. Funding to support bicycling and walking projects has historically been an afterthought. Finding the dollars to turn this:

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Into this:

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...can hinge on knowing the odd nuances of a federal funding program.

That’s why Advocacy Advance works to teach public officials, advocates, elected officials, and community members how to access untapped or under-utilized federal active transportation funding. With a focus on the newest transportation bill, Navigating MAP-21 Workshops set communities up to maximize public funding for biking and walking.

These workshops really work. Advocacy Advance has facilitated 19 funding workshops in 17 states, directly resulting in over $27.7 million in public funding for biking and walking infrastructure and programs. These sessions are so effective in part because advocates and public agencies must apply together to host – so collaboration between advocates and public officials starts before the trainers even arrive, solidifies during the learning process, and continues long after trainers have left.

Plus, thanks to the support from the SRAM Cycling Fund Kaiser Permanente and local sponsors, Navigating MAP-21 Workshops are offered for free.

Want in? Join us! This year, Navigating MAP-21 workshops will take place in the following communities:

We hope to see you there.

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2014 Advocacy Awards Nominees: Business Advocate of the Year

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 28, 2014


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Leading up to the 2014 Advocacy Awards on Monday, March 3 in Washington, DC, we’re using our blog to spotlight the nominees who are in the running.

Today, let’s take a look at nominees for Business Advocate of the Year.

This award goes to a business, corporation or corporate employee who have constantly championed the cause of bicycling and walking advocacy. The time, money, and energy they have invested are evidence of their commitment to promoting bicycling and walking for healthier communities and sustainable transportation choices.

This year, 10 exceptional advocates reached the final nomination stage for consideration by a panel of judges from throughout the biking & walking advocacy world. No use lobbying, though—the winner has already been decided! Join us at the Alliance Advocacy Awards ceremony on March 3 in DC, presented by Bicycling Magazine, to find out who will take home the trophy.

CRW Engineering Group

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CRW has been a huge supporter of bicycling in Anchorage, Alaska. When the Municipality decided to distribute free bicycle maps with safety information, CRW offered their graphic artist’s time to build the map, check the proofs, and update the map each year. The Municpality of Anchorage has handed out approximately 40,000 maps over the last three years — an effort that would have been impossible without CRW’s assistance.

Nominated by: Lori Schanche

Seattle Children’s Hospital

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Children’s chooses to promote physically active travel among its employees by incentivizing commuting by bicycle and on foot. In 2013, Seattle Children’s was awarded Gold level certification in Cascade’s BizCycle program, recognizing the efforts of bike-friendly businesses. Plus, Children’s has supported innovative projects that connect their facility to nearby biking and walking infrastructure.  Recent projects include a neighborhood greenway, two-way protected bikeway, and bicycle climbing lane.

Nominated by: Elizabeth Kiker

A & B Cycle

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This Springfield bike shop has played a strong role in supporting advocacy initiatives. In the past several years, A & B has created a city-wide ad campaign to encourage people to bike, led a campaign to mail over 2,500 pro-bike facility postcards to the mayor, and distributed car window decals of a bike silhouette. In addition, the shop offers free bike racks and installation to local businesses who request one.

Nominated by: Lori Tack

Citigroup

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Citigroup took an enormous risk in sponsoring Citi Bike, New York’s new bike share system. They stepped in at a critical time when the City had no clear way to fund the program. Citi’s $41 million sponsorship helped the nation’s largest bike share system launch with no public subsidy — then stood strong even when the program was being lambasted by major media outlets. Thanks to them, hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers and visitors have gotten to enjoy New York on two wheels.

Nominated by: Dani Simons

David Baker Architects


David Baker has been a long time bike and pedestrian advocate in San Francisco. He is a leading supporter in the decade-long campaign to win a better 2nd Street, and leads on several safety campaigns in the South of Market area. His business has some of the most innovative bike parking in the city, and he’s dedicated much of his time, energy, and resources to improving San Francisco for biking and walking. Baker is featured in the new Protected Bike Lanes Mean Business report and has served as a national example for how to be a bike-friendly business.

Nominated by: Paolo Cosulich-Schwartz

Sixteenth Street Community Health Centers

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The Center promotes biking and walking as part of their effort to encourage healthy lifestyles among patients and families. To encourage daily activity, doctors from the center hold community walking groups and even offer zumba classes to patients. In 2013, the Center held its second annual Southside Bicycle Day, a community event featuring bicycle tune-ups, bicycle education and helmet fittings, bicycle raffles, zumba and nia classes, healthy foods, and bicycle parades.

Nominated by: Paolo Cosulich-Schwartz

Kaiser Permanente

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Over the course of 2013, Kaiser Permanente has invested countless staff time and well over a million dollars to expand walking health outreach and advocacy. They initiated the innovative Every Body Walk Collaborative, an effort among diverse organizational partners — including America Walks, the Alliance and many state and local walking advocacy organizations — to galvanize the national walking movement. Thanks to KP’s support in 2013, Every Body Walk Collaborative and America Walks convened the first annual National Walking Summit in Washington, DC. KP also invested in Advocacy Advance — a partnership between the League of American Bicyclists and Alliance for Biking & Walking.

Nominated by: Jeffrey Miller

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This Week in Biking & Walking

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 28, 2014


Welcome to the Alliance’s weekly roundup of state & local biking & walking advocacy news. Every week, we crawl the blogs of our member organizations and bring you the most interesting tidbits.  

WINTER ADVENTURES

Wisconsin’s ice caves are stunning—and sometimes bikeable.


Women from WE Bike NYC set off this week to ride to DC for the Bike Summit. Good luck, ladies! Please don’t freeze. The movement needs you. 

INFRASTRUCTURE NEWS

The SF Bicycle Coalition compares the cost of bikeways with other transportation costs. Hint: they’re a cheap date.

Commuter rail and a rail-trail are in the plans for Jackson County, MO

Advocates are working to connect downtown Boston with protected bike lanes

Bikeways for Everyone pulls five maps that show where Minneapolis needs protected bike lanes

A new proposal for Nicollet Mall in Minneapolis includes shared transit / bike lanes. This was a surprise to the engineering subcommittee of the bicycle advisory committee, which had expected protected bike lanes.  


Pittsburgh’s Pocusset Street represents an important milestone: the first street in the city to be converted into a walk/bike only route

Here’s Washington, DC’s proposal for 2014 bike lanes

THE BIG PICTURE

Sad news: Plan B – the large New Orleans community bike shop and host of Bike!Bike! 2013 – were priced out of their rental space and are shutting down. Anybody have a warehouse in New Orleans to donate? 

The East Bay Bicycle Coalition is now Bike East Bay. (Is it just us, or are all the cool bike advocacy organizations changing their names?)

PROGRAMMING

An handful of trails in Silicon Valley are getting facelifts

There’s plenty to sink your teeth into in the new evaluation of CicloSDias, San Diego’s first Open Streets event. One highlight: “84% of randomly sampled San Diego residents support improving bicycling infrastructure; 62% still support improving bicycling infrastructure even if it means removing a lane of traffic or parking.”

WABA calls for Vision Zero in DC


Transportation Alternatives breaks down why Vision Zero matters for everyone

Bike Pittsburgh uses Advocacy Advance’s newest report to evaluate Pennsylvania’s transportation funding record

ADVOCACY AVENUE

Los Angeles County will need to compete for the state’s active transportation funds.  

Save the dates: Delaware’s Walkable Bikeable Summit will be on May 1; Massachusetts’ Bike/Walk Summit will be April 3; Oregon’s Safe Routes to School Conference will be June 26 - 28

LEGISLATION LANE

The Massachusetts Senate is considering a bill that would open $398 million in bonding authority over five years to fund biking, and $50 million for Complete Streets. 

In Virginia, the “three-foot passing” bill passed in committee while “following too closely” and dooring bills failed. 

IN THE NEWS

Cascade Bicycle Club is taking a new direction with former League VP Elizabeth Kiker at the helm. 

This tale of stolen bike recovery in SF will have you at the edge of your seat. 

TRAILER 

This woman plans to marry her bicycle

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2014 Advocacy Awards Nominees: Advocate of the Year

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 27, 2014


imageLeading up to the 2014 Advocacy Awards on Monday, March 3 in Washington, DC, we’re using our blog to spotlight the nominees who are in the running.

Today, let’s take a look at nominees for Advocate of the Year.

This award goes to an individual leader at a bicycling and/or walking advocacy organization who has shown tireless commitment to promoting active transportation at the state and/or local level. This person goes above and beyond the call of duty to transform his/her state/community into a great place for active transportation His or her time, knowledge, creativity, and commitment are the highest standard of excellence exemplifying a role model for peers.

This year, 10 exceptional advocates reached the final nomination stage for consideration by a panel of judges from throughout the biking & walking advocacy world. No use lobbying, though—the winner has already been decided! Join us at the Alliance Advocacy Awards ceremony on March 3 in DC, presented by Bicycling Magazine, to find out who will take home the trophy.

Wendy Landman, WalkBoston

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Photo: WalkBoston

Wendy Landman is a creative leader for pedestrians, well-known throughout Massachusetts as the Executive Director of WalkBoston. In 2013, Wendy was appointed to the Transition Team of the new Mayor of Boston, Marty Walsh and served on the committee to produce Boston’s new Complete Streets plan. She continues her membership on the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Board, working closely with state officials to set goals and implement progress for walking. And at the national level, Wendy has served as an active board member of America Walks and acts as an inspiration and mentor for advocates around the country. She tirelessly works the halls of the State House, the living rooms of individuals, and boardrooms of corporations – all in the interest of serving walkers in the urban, suburban and rural communities of Massachusetts.

Nominated by: Dorothea Hass, Stacey Beuttell, Brendan Kearney and Bob Sloane

Chema Hernandez Gil, San Francisco Bicycle Coalition

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Chema is a highly effective community organizer who has captained nearly all of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition’s toughest campaigns unflappable persistence. He has secured winning votes for millions of dollars of funding for high impact projects. He developed a popular Reclaimed Bicycle Program, putting refurbished bikes in to the hands of low income San Franciscans throughout the city. Thanks to his work, the City is transforming this successful pilot program in to an ongoing, City-backed program. He has developed strong relationships with diverse community groups and organizations around the city, finding ways to navigate stiff opposition with kindness and open arms. Chema has made the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition much stronger through his thoughtful hard work.

Nominated by: Kit Hodge

Nelle Pierson, Washington Area Bicyclist Association

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As WABA’s outreach coordinator and former events coordinator, Nelle has designed and established the highly successful and multi-faceted Women & Bicycles program. Her new program is transforming the conversation about women and bicycling in the DC region and bringing in new riders and advocates to bicycling. New elements of the Women & Bicycles program include the a handbook with basic bike information and women-specific riding tips, the “Roll Models” outreach program in which ten leaders each mentor ten new riders, rides and workshops for skillsharing, a rapidly growing women-only Facebook group, and a weekly women’s coffee club.

Nominated by: Fionnuala Quinn

Angela M. Eikenberry, Mode Shift Omaha

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Angie coordinates Mode Shift Omaha, a group of volunteer advocates working to advance active transportation. She closely follows city transportation issues, writes well researched blog posts and op-ed letters to keep community members informed, and collaborates with policymakers as a member of several regional and city transportation committees. In 2013, she coordinated a candidate questionnaire for mayor and city council candidates. Omaha is so fortunate to have her!

Nominated by: Julie Harris

Cynthia Rose, Santa Monica Spoke

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As Director of Santa Monica Spoke, Cynthia has worked tirelessly to make Santa Monica a better place to bike, walk, and live – all in an upaid volunteer capacity. As a founder, she has built SM Spoke into a highly respected voice for change via numerous local and regional alliances. The organization has become a key partner for the city, credited with playing a key role in the creation of the city’s Bicycle Action Plan. Cynthia has also been at the forefront of forming the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition’s Local Chapter Program, of which SMSpoke is the inaugural chapter. The Local Chapter Program is key in reaching all 88 municipalities in vast Los Angeles County. 

Nominated by: Damien Newton, Bryan Beretta, and Francie Stefan

Rhonda Smythe, Trailnet

Photo: Trailnet

As policy and advocacy manager at Trailnet, Rhonda leads all of the organization’s advocacy work in St. Louis. She brings her health and nutritional sciences background to Trailnet’s Healthy, Active, and Vibrant Communities Program, working with regional partners to promote active living and healthy nutrition in four low-income communities vulnerable to obesity. In addition to leading advocacy for safer facilities, increased funding, state legislative priorities, and connected networks, Rhonda has tirelessly led the charge to implement a Complete Streets Policy in St. Louis County. After over 9 months of writing and advocating for a policy to make all streets accessible for all users, the policy was adopted in January. 

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane

Ed France, Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition

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Photo: BiciCentro

Ed France has been at the center of the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition as the organization has evolved from an all-volunteer organization to hiring multiple staff members and seeing tremendous growth. Under his leadership, the Coalition opened BiciCentro, the first regional bike kitchen, which empowers the community to learn to fix their own bikes. Ed also oversaw Increased advocacy efforts, which led to new bike lanes and a heightened awareness of the city’s need for better bicycle accomodations. Ed is now hiring advocacy staff to work full time on our “Connecting our Community” campaign, which envisions an improved bike network to lead to 20% biking mode share.

Nominated by: Michael Chiacos

Eric Weis, East Coast Greenway Alliance

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Eric’s commitment to biking and walking is transforming the Eastern Seaboard, especially New England. He has devoted 15 years to developing the East Coast Greenway, a 2,900-mile urban sister of the Appalachian Trail. He is smart (knows almost every mile of the route) and fun to work with for fellow staff, volunteers, and allies. He has recently organized three New England Bike and Walk Summits that are helping the region begin to achieve its potential as a hub for ubiquitous active trips for commutes and recreation.

Nominated by: Dennis Markatos-Soriano

Mark E. Martin, Bike Baton Rouge

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Mark has been an energetic, tireless advocate for bicycling in Louisiana and the region. Not only Baton Rouge but three other Louisiana cities now have effective bicycle advocacy organizations due, at least in part, to his efforts. He worked to have 3-feet passing and anti-harassment laws passed in the state. In conjunction with AARP-Louisiana, he worked to pass a Senate resolution which led a Complete Streets policy within the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LaDOTD). On top of all this, Mark has been working with Front Yard Bikes to establish the first community bicycle shop in Baton Rouge history.

Nominated by: Brian Parsons

Samantha Ollinger, Bike San Diego

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Photo courtesy Sam Ollinger

No one has done more to advance bike advocacy in a major California city in just a few years than Sam Ollinger, Executive Director of Bike San Diego.  With her forceful, precise style, Sam has altered the transportation conversation and the direction of public policy in California’s second most populous city. In 2013, Sam oversaw the passage of a progressive $312 million city bike plan update and a regional decision to front-load $200 million of bike-ped investments. Thanks in part to Sam’s influence, 2013 mayoral candidates competed with one another over who was more bike-friendly, the City of San Diego has officially embraced design guidelines for protected bike lanes, and thousands of San Diegans are informed and activated online. Sam’s work with BikeSD has challenged longstanding bike advocates to up their game, and they have responded strongly, creating additional momentum to move San Diego towards robust active transportation.

Nominated by: Walter Chambers, Chris Morfas

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2014 Advocacy Awards Nominees: Advocacy Organization of the Year

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 26, 2014


Leading up to the 2014 Advocacy Awards on Monday, March 3 in Washington, DC, we’re using our blog to spotlight the nominees who are in the running.

Today, let’s take a look at nominees for Advocacy Organization of the Year.

This award goes to a bicycling and/or walking advocacy organization who, in the past year, made significant progress. Their leaders have worked tirelessly together to grow and strengthen their organization and fulfill their mission. The proof of their efforts is in the growth of their capacity and programs and the victories they have achieved for biking and walking in their state/community.

This year, 10 stellar groups reached the final nomination stage for consideration by a panel of judges from throughout the biking & walking advocacy world. No use lobbying—the winner has already been decided! Join us at the Alliance Advocacy Awards ceremony on March 3 in DC, presented by Bicycling Magazine, to find out who will take home the trophy.

Bike Cleveland (Cleveland, OH)

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This Rust Belt advocacy organization has plenty to crow about. In 2013, Bike Cleveland executed new programming to boost biking, including a head-to-head National Bike Challenge against Pittsburgh, neighborhood outreach through bike fix-a-thons and light giveaways, and seven Bike to Work Day events. The organization oversaw significant policy victories: advocates won a countywide Complete Streets policy as well as local three foot passing and anti-harassment laws. In addition, Cleveland’s bike lanes increased by over 20% in 2013 alone and installed five new bike parking corrals — all thanks in part to Bike Cleveland’s efforts.

Nominated by: Jacob VanSickle

Bike Easy (New Orleans, LA)

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New Orleans’ bike advocacy organization continued to grow and achieve impressive accomplishments in its third year with a paid staff member. Bike Easy‘s advocacy resulted in 25 new miles of bikeways, the largest single year expansion of the bike network in the city’s history. Advocates organized a bike share demo during the Superbowl, which helped secure commitments for a permanent bike share business plan. The organization also hosted the city’s first Open Streets event, conducted over 30 commuter workshops, and ushered in the city’s first on-street bicycle parking infrastructure.

Nominated by: Dan Jatres and Brighid O’Keane

BikeNet (Billings, MT)

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As a bike, walk, and trail advocacy group in Billings, Montana, BikeNet partners with numerous community organizations, public agencies and businesses to work towards connecting the city with trails and bikeways. Advocates have successfully raised local matching dollars for federal-aid projects dollars and have supported numerous local events to raise awareness of the importance of active transportation and active lifestyles. Without the help of BikeNet, Billings’ 36 miles of trails and 20 miles of bike lanes would never have been completed.

Nominated by: Darlene Tussing

BikeSD (San Diego, CA)

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This San Diego advocacy organization accumulated an impressive list of accomplishments in 2013. Thanks in part to BikeSD’s work as a 501c4 organization, three out of four mayoral candidates released a bike plan during the race. The new mayor now regularly touts the importance bicycling for the city. The organization initiated and helped with the launch of the city’s first open streets event, CicloSDias. BikeSD was instrumental in getting the city to adopt pro-bikeway design guidelines by becoming a member of the National Association of City Transportation Officials. BikeSD also led efforts to receive a unanimous vote from their regional planning agency, SANDAG, in approving $200 million in funding for urban bike projects along key urban corridors. 

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane

Community Cycles (Boulder, CO)

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Community Cycles works with the city and county of Boulder as well as many national and local bicycle organizations in the Boulder area. Community Cycles provides free or low cost bicycle options to any and all who express a need. Community Cycles also reaches out to low income and student housing groups to teach bicycle safety. The organization also offers free classes on bike bus commuting, trailer moving and other non automotive means of commuting in Boulder.

Nominated by: Dean Fogerty

Health by Design (Indiana)

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As an Indianapolis-based coalition of health, transportation, and community advocates, Health by Design has taken great strides to advance multi-modal transportation in Indiana communities and throughout the state. In 2013, the organization led efforts to organize nine Complete Streets workshops around Indiana and develop a model Complete Streets ordinance — leading to at least four local and regional policy proposals. Health by Design made strides at the Statehouse by coordinating the first annual Transit Day and successfully moving a bill for dedicated transit funding. And at the local level in Indianapolis, advocates organized the city’s first Open Streets initiative and helped create a new Safe Routes to School coordinator position.

Nominated by: Zia Brucaya

Living Streets Alliance (Tucson, AZ)

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Tucson, Arizona’s new active transportation advocacy group has seen an extraordinary year of progress. Living Streets Alliance advocates organized and led Car-Lite Living classes and neighborhood walking assessments in addition to spearheading an “I Walk. I Ride. I Vote” campaign. The organization won a remarkable $50 million for walking infrastructure and organized Ciclovia Tucson, the city’s Open Streets initiative, which drew over 25,000 people.

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane and Corky Poster

MassBike (Massachusetts)

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In 2013, Massachusetts’ statewide bike advocacy organization launched the Bikeable Communities Program, which leverages modest state and federal funding to support local advocates in dozens of communities around the state. In 2013, MassBike has undertaken bikeability assessments with local advocates, trained local advocates on effective advocacy and storytelling and provided planning assistance to local advocates and city staff. Thanks in part to this successful program, MassBike was able to add two staff positions and increase the programs budget 10-fold in 2013.

Nominated by: Price Armstrong, Brighid O’Keane, and David Watson

Washington Bikes (Washington state)

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In Washington state, Washington Bikes (formerly the Bicycle Alliance of Washington) connects to a wide spectrum of people from the grassroots advocate to the Governor.  They are accessible, participate in community forums, provide educational and leadership education to cyclists and advocates.  The organization provides an engaging blog and online and physical store. Basically, Washington Bikes is the entire package, being fun and educational for cyclists, advocated, policymakers, and more.

Nominated by: Jaime Brush

WE Bike NYC (New York, NY)

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The WE in WE Bike NYC stands for Women’s Empowerment, and this organization’s growth over the past year has been a testament to interest in bicycling beyond traditional advocates. With an almost entirely volunteer staff, WE Bike NYC runs three distinct programs: WE Ride, women’s tours and social rides through the 5 boroughs; Moms on Wheels, education to help moms feel comfortable on the road; and Mujeres en Movimiento, an adult earn-a-bike program focused with low-income Spanish speaking women in Queens.

Nominated by: Casey Ashenhurst and Liz Jose

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2014 Advocacy Awards Nominees: Winning Campaign of the Year

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 25, 2014


Leading up to the 2014 Advocacy Awards on Monday, March 3 in Washington, DC, we’re using our blog to spotlight the nominees who are in the running.

Today, let’s take a look at nominees for the Winning Campaign of the Year Award. The winner will be announced at the awards ceremony on March 3 in DC, presented by Bicycling Magazine.

This award goes to an organization for a winning campaign, in the last year, which has had the biggest impact for bicycling and walking. Their victory will dramatically increase biking and walking in their state/community or will dramatically shift the way that biking and walking are considered.

Transportation Alternatives: Citi Bike gets rolling

Their behind-the-scenes work might not have made major headlines. But for anyone familiar with the transportation advocacy world in New York City, it was obvious that Transportation Alternatives was a huge reason Citi Bike got off the ground. From research to lobbying to grassroots organizing, the behemoth New York City advocacy organization worked for years on the successful campaign to make bikeshare a reality and a success.

Nominated by: Caroline Samponaro

Bicycle Transportation Alliance: Tapping Oregon lottery funds for bike/ped

In 2013, the Bicycle Transportation Alliance successfully led a campaign to allow a lottery-backed funding pool for transportation projects to fund biking and walking projects. Oregon communities will potentially be able to access $42M in project construction funds for biking.

Nominated by: Gerik Kransky

TRED of Rome-Floyd County: Winning sales tax dollars for a Georgia trail

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At an Alliance Winning Campaign Training on a scholarship from Georgia Bikes, TRED advocates developed an ambitious plan to add a trail project to a ballot referendum. Not only were they successful in getting the item added to the project list, but they also led a campaign in the community that resulted in the referendum passing by less than 100 votes! The citizens of Rome-Floyd County will levy a limited-duration 1 cent sales tax for special projects, including a vital bike-ped connector trail.

Nominated by: Brent Buice

Active Transportation Alliance: Building America’s best new bike lane

Chicago’s new 1.15 mile-long protected bike lane was been a success thanks in large part to the efforts of the Active Transportation Alliance. Active Trans mobilized almost 5,000 supporters and enlisted the support of business associations and high-profile members of the business community. This project has been a springboard for an expanding the network of protected bike lanes in Chicago, setting a high bar for future projects.

Nominated by: Jim Merrell

Georgia Bikes: Georgians kill the worst bicycle bill ever

A handful of Georgia legislators proposed a bill that would have required licenses for all cyclists and required that all bicyclists ride single file in groups of four or less. Georgia Bikes sounded the alarm, and advocates bombard the architects of the ill-fated bill. The bill’s coauthors quickly retreated. Huzzah!

Nominated by: Teresa Hutson

Washington Bikes: Washington state Neighborhood Safe Streets Bill

Thanks to a long advocacy effort by Washington Bikes and others, the state legislature passed this bill, which gives cities and towns the authority to set speed limits to 20 miles per hour on non-arterial streets. The law provides cities and towns the local control to design streets for low-stress, low-speed neighborhood travel. Washington Bikes hopes to use the victory to build neighborhood greenways, slow-speed connections around schools, and local slow zones.

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane

Bike Walk Alliance for Missoula: The hard-won Missoula Lolo Trail

After 20 years of trying to build this 50-mile path from Missoula to Hamilton, the project was denied funding by Federal Lands Access Program reviewers. But no matter: Bike Walk Alliance for Missoula and Adventure Cycling advocates rallied to raise money to rehire the project’s contractors in just 24 hours, then rewrote the application to fit TIGER parameters. Thanks to their efforts and support from Senator Tester, the project received funding.

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane

Recycle-A-Bicycle: Creating and growing the Youth Bike Summit

Recycle-A-Bicycle has successfully grown its Youth Bike Summit and created a national network of organizations that focus on youth in bicycling. The 2013 Summit saw over 375 attendees from 24 states—an increase of over 100% since the 2011 founding summit. Youth Bike is a key element in helping to transform the future of national bike advocacy as it takes the necessary steps toward becoming a more accessible, inclusive movement. 

Nominated by: Pasqualina Azzarello

Community Cycles: Double bike/ped ballot measures in Boulder

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Community Cycles worked with partners to pass two ballot measures that will create a local sales tax to fund bike and pedestrian infrastructure. The funds will bring in $4.2M per year for 16 years to keep roads safe for people who walk and bicycle in Boulder, including low-stress on-street bike facilities and key maintenance projects.

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane

Bike East Bay & San Francisco Bicycle Coalition: Bay Area Advocates win full bike access on BART

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The San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit System (BART) was built in the early 1970s with no provision for access by bicyclists. Early advocacy efforts provided very limited access for bicycles – but it wasn’t until 2013 that a coalition of Bay Area advocates teamed up to convince BART to authorize pilot programs for full bicycle access. The programs’ success resulted in a decision near year-end 2013 to permanently allow bicycles on BART at all hours.

Nominated by: Renee Rivera

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This Week in Biking & Walking

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 21, 2014


SNOW MUCH SNOW 

Drama in Boston: An email from public officials revealed that the recreation department doesn’t plow routes for bicyclists. MassBike and the Boston Cyclists Union are working on it. 

Arlington, VA isn’t plowing their trails. WABA objects

INFRASTRUCTURE NEWS

Bike Delaware shared this excellent video about how to protect people on bikes at intersections: 

 

Philly will get some beautiful new bike racks

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Here’s why Minneapolis needs a protected bike lane on 28th Street

THE BIG PICTURE

The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition has a cool new video (featuring Grammy nominee Anthony David and a mayor cameo!): 

Mirror board votes make it official: the Austin Cycling Association and Bike Austin will merge. 

The North Carolina Active Transportation Alliance has changed their name to BikeWalk NC. 

PROGRAMMING

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is holding bicycle education classes for professional drivers. A sneak peek: 

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ADVOCACY AVENUE

State summits are coming up in Oregon and Montana.  

Bikemore and the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition are excited for upcoming Winning Campaigns Trainings. 

Transportation Alternatives calls on Mayor de Blasio to implement Vision Zero by fixing the most dangerous streets

LEGISLATION LANE

Several bills are moving in Virginia: 3-foot passing, dooring, following too closely, and—my favorite—balaclava decriminalization

Biking and walking funding is on the line in North Carolina

Wisconsin Bike Fed is supporting a half-cent sales tax for transit

IN THE NEWS

Lingering snow is feeding the #sneckdown craze in DC. (WAMU)

Victim-blaming is alive and well in Indianapolis. (RTV6)

TRAILER 

A Daly City councilmember has vowed to ride his bike on every single street in the city. Every single one! 

Tags: roundup

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2014 Advocacy Awards Nominees: Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 20, 2014


Leading up to the 2014 Advocacy Awards on Monday, March 3 in Washington, DC, we’re using our blog to spotlight the nominees who are in the running.

Today, let’s take a look at nominees for the Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award. The winner will be announced at the Advocacy Awards ceremony on March 3 in DC, presented by Bicycling Magazine.

This award commemorates Susie Stephens, one of the Alliance’s founders and an enduring inspiration for many members of the bicycle and pedestrian movement. The honor goes to an individual who carries on Susie’s passion for advocating for bicycling as a fun and economical means of transportation, as well as creating a safe biking and walking environment for all.

Jess Mathews

 

As an advocate with Consider Biking, Jess has worked diligently to bring bicycling to women of all ages. She co-founded the Ohio Women’s Bicycling Summit and leads monthly 2 Wheels and Heels rides. Jess presented an inspiring talk at TEDxColumbus on women as “The Indicator Species” in bicycling.

Nominated by: Jody Dzuranin

Laura Solis

If it involves bicycles in New York City, Laura is there — from fixed gear meetups to beginner brunch rides. She currently serves as the volunteer outreach coordinator at WE Bike NYC, is an active member of the TA Bronx Committee, volunteers with Boogie Down Rides, and is the development & community outreach manager at Bike New York. Her enthusiasm and kindness have the ability to make cycling new again for experienced riders, and to make it accessible for new riders.

Nominated by: Liz Jose

Frank Henson, AKA “Bicycle Santa”

Frank Henson serves as the President of Queen City Bike, Cincinnati’s Bicycle Advocacy organization, volunteering countless hours to QCB’s mission. For the entire month of December, Frank he rides his bike complete with bike trailer “sleigh” around Greater Cincinnati handing out candy canes and spreading the bike love. He has gained somewhat of a cult local celebrity status, with photos in the local newspapers and event partnerships with the local transit agency, METRO.

Nominated by: Nern Ostendorf

Tim Blagden

Tim is the first full-time director of the Bike Walk Alliance of New Hampshire, the state’s only statewide bicycle and pedestrian advocacy organization. From the moment Tim started work, he began leading the organization with a new joy and enthusiasm that will take the organization to new hieghts as it serves bicycle and pedestrian advocacy throughout New Hampshire.

Nominated by: Larry Keniston

Carmelita Sams

 

As a volunteer at Chicago’s West Town Bikes and an employee of Ciclo Urbano, Carmelita was a great and patient mechanic who excelled at helping people through difficult situations. Her love of bicycling was an inspiration to all of us, always encouraging others to ride and grow. Carmelita passed away suddenly in December of 2013, and her absence has made waves through the biking community in Chicago.

Nominated by: Active Transportation Alliance and West Town Bikes

Sarah Shipley

Sarah has an incredible amount of enthusiasm and passion, and she’s brought it into all of her active transportation work over the last decade. Sarah worked in DC with the Rail to Trails Conservance and the League of American Bicyclists, and she is a founder of BikeWalkKC in Kansas City, Missouri. Sarah is a tireless advocate, always looking for new ways to engage and excite community members who walk and bike.

Nominated by: Brighid O’Keane

Jessica Binder

Jessica has been a dedicated and innovative leader at the Wisconsin Bike Fed for near ten years. Jessica created and funded a successful Safe Routes to School program. She created and funded the nation’s first state wide Ambassador program, providing bicycle education to over 100,000 people. She brings her passion to the most difficult advocacy work, is full of energy, and helps keep the staff’s spirits up with her positive outlook and true belief that biking is a joyful solution to many of the problems we face today.

Nominated by: Dave Schlabowske

Mari Lynch

Mari’s enthusiasm for helping others bike led her to found Bicycling Monterey. Mari doesn’t wait until all conditions are right and funds are available; she just dives in and gets things done! She founded a bike class for incarcerated teens, helped support Monterey County’s first Open Streets, and performs regular cheerful outreach by bike.

Nominated by: Holly Heimer, Laurel Thomsen, Sandi Laney

Katie Monroe

As an Education Fellow with the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, Katie launched Women Bike PHL, an initiative with the goal of getting more women in Philadelphia on bikes more often. Over the course of her 10-month-year-old program, Katie led 30 rides and classes, formed relationships with 20 community partners, penned 8 columns for Philly.com, and fostered a bustling Facebook group. Her enthusiasm is infectious: women who may otherwise be on the fence about bicycling contact her just days after the class with stories of their first commute to work. 

Nominated by: Megan Rosenbach

Bevin Barber-Campbell

Bevin has given her time and energy to establish new walking and biking programs at each of the schools her children have attended in Fort Collins, CO. As a lead SRTS instructor, she has been helped the City’s Safe Routes to School program move forward with creative, fun, ambitious initiatives to get at least 50% of local schoolchildren biking or walking to school on a regular basis.

Nominated by: Nancy Nichols

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Lifting the Veil on Bicycle and Pedestrian Spending

By Christy Kwan on February 19, 2014


Cross-posted from the Advocacy Advance blog.

Each year, $37 billion is allocated to states for transportation projects. How much does your state plan to spend on bicycle and pedestrian facilities?

The new Advocacy Advance report, Lifting the Veil on Bicycle and Pedestrian Spending, takes a look at a complex federal process – the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). STIPs, at their most basic, are budget documents that express how states plan to spend federal transportation funds for the next four years.

We examined these documents in every state to determine the types of facilities that are planned for people who walk and bike. We asked if planned projects will serve bicyclists-only, pedestrians-only, or both through a shared facility and whether they will occur as part of other roadwork or as standalone projects. We found that:

  • Bicycling and walking investments are difficult to determine and appear to be small.
  • Bicycling and walking facilities are more numerous than cost percentage estimates alone might suggest.
  • Complete Streets policies are often correlated with more projects including bicycling and walking facilities, but having good data better explains states’ performance.
  • No strong trend emerged in how states allocated spending among biking, walking, and shared-use facilities.

States are required to make information accessible means and involve the public. By rating each state based upon how their DOT presents federally required planning information, we hope to encourage best practices that improve transparency and lead to better civic engagement.

At a minimum, we recommend that states provide better project descriptions and better coordination of data. The current process does not allow the public to meaningfully assess the performance of the states in following their stated policies and priorities. We hope that the information in this report will help that change.

We hope this report will be a tool for bicycling and walking advocates to call for more investments in bicycling and walking projects, more integration of bicycling and walking into road projects, and better tracking of active transportation investments.

Download the new report.

UPDATE: We held a webinar to explain this analysis. Check out the slides here and see below for a recording of the session.

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This Week in Biking & Walking

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 14, 2014


IT’S V-DAY! 

Calgary bicyclists sent valentines to mayor Naheed Nenshi to thank him for new bike lanes. 

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Philly advocates celebrate with amorous tweets to the city

Transportation Alternatives highlights 8 romantic date rides

INFRASTRUCTURE NEWS

The Active Transportation Alliance suggested a handful of streets that could become car-free. 

Activitsts won a protected bike lane in Cambridge, MA.  

Los Angeles will develop a 180-mile network of family-friendly bike routes

Mountain View, CA may take out a lane of parking for a bike lane. 

The Internet freaks out about #sneckdowns, temporary road narrowings of snow. Transportation Alternatives included this helpful image in their newsletter:

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PROGRAMMING

Bike Pittsburgh will hold a women & biking forum

Bike Clark County teamed up with the Vancouver Housing Authority to teach kids bike repair. 

POLICY & LEGISLATION

Balaclava-wearers, rejoice! Looks like a new bill will make it legal to wear a face mask in Virginia, so long as you’re not in a bank.  

Modeshift Omaha looks at upcoming bills in the Nebraska legislature

Wisconsin advocates speak up for a bill to keep trails open 24/7 and ask for a vote on a vulnerable user’s bill.   

IN THE NEWS

Pedestrian fatalities are common, but drivers are rarely charged. (Wall Street Journal)

TRAILER 

Chill out, snow plougher! This walker in New York was knocked over by a slushy blast

Tags: roundup

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This Week in Biking & Walking

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 07, 2014


Alliance Member News

The Bicycle Coalition of Maine’s video of their inaugural 2013 Bike Maine ride will make you want to eat a lobster and/or ride along a stunning coastline.  

If you only read one bike thing today, make it BikeSD’s takedown of the idea that advocates need to explain bad cyclist behavior.

Will San Francisco’s municipal transportation agency fund biking from its capital budget

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Orgs nominated for the Bicycling Magazine People’s Choice Award were getting out the vote this week: Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition, Active Transportation Alliance, MassBike, Transportation Alternatives, and Georgia Bikes

Wisconsin’s vulnerable road users bill was passed out of committee

The Massachusetts House passed $50 million for Complete Streets

It’s official: Atlanta is getting bike share

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Chicagoans <3 transportation haikus.

Survey says: Portlanders support more dollars for bicycle facilities

Several organizations are supporting the League of American Bicyclists’ push for the New Opportunities for Bicycle and Pedestrian Infrastructure Act: Bike Walk KC, Bike Walk Connecticut, Green Mobility Network, and Georgia Bikes

Biking & Walking in the News

Op-ed: Four reasons US business leaders want protected bike lanes (The Guardian)

Advocates are pushing for repairs to Washington, DC’s Rock Creek Park trail. (WAMU)

This post showing before and after shots of New York City streets is going viral. (The Architect)

Tags: roundup

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Save the Date for the 2014 Alliance Advocacy Awards

By Mary Lauran Hall on February 07, 2014


Voting for the Bicycling Magazine People’s Choice Award has now closed—and we have a winner!

But hold on—the winning initiative won’t be announced until the Alliance Advocacy Awards on Monday, March 3 in Washington, DC.

I’ll give you a hint, though: the organization that won is a major changemaker in the movement to make our streets better and safer for biking and walking. These folks took on a big, challenging campaign that easily could have been a failure in less capable hands. But with hard work, the right coalition of support, and effective organizing, they took on the challenge—and won.

On second thought, that doesn’t narrow it down at all. Ugh. The suspense is killing me.


Via Giphy

Oh, well. In the meantime, get our your calendar and save the date:

2014 Alliance Advocacy Awards
Presented by Bicycling Magazine
Monday, March 3, 2014, 8 PM
At RFD, 810 7th St NW (just down the street from the National Bike Summit)

See you there!

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