SLO City Planning Commission to Address Key Bicycle Projects this Week

The San Luis Obispo City Planning Commission is set to consider two important bicycle issues at their Wednesday night meeting, and the Bicycle Coalition would love to see your support! There is no speaking required, but you can if you would like. The two issues to be reviewed at the meeting include:
  • The preferred trail alignment of the Bob Jones Trail from Los Osos Valley Road to the Octagon Barn
  • The Draft 2013 Bicycle Transportation Plan

When: Wednesday September 11, 2013 at 6:00 pm
Where: City Council Chambers, 990 Palm St, SLO (map)

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Your Bicycle Coalition has been hard at work with our team of advocates as we continue the positive progress of the Bob Jones Trail for users countywide. In addition to the future of this popular trail, the commission will also be considering the Draft 2013 Bicycle Transportation Plan – the blueprint of future bicycle facilities in the City of SLO. Both issues are key as we work together to make SLO County an incredible place for bicycles!

View the September 11, 2013 Planning Commission agenda.

Bob Jones Trail

There is no need to speak in support of the proposed alignment, just being there to show the bicycle community’s overwhelming support for the alignment along the scenic creek is very helpful.

If you would like to speak:
-Urge commissioners to support the preferred alignment along the creek and creek setback (read more about the preferred alignment).

Draft 2013 Bicycle Transportation Plan

The Bicycle Transportation Plan creates a guiding blueprint for increasing bicycle ridership and future infrastructure improvements to improve connectivity and safety for all road users. Your Bicycle Coalition will be asking commissioners to recommend approval of the draft plan to the SLO City Council.

If you would like to speak: (We encourage you to do so!)
-Urge commissioners to recommend approval of the plan to the SLO City Council.
-You can also view the plan online (planned projects start at page 52, Appendix A, all are sorted by area of SLO City) and take note of the specific projects that are important to you and your family.

If you cannot attend:
-Take a look at the plan online, and send a quick email the Deputy Director of Long Range Planning, Kim Murry (kmurry@slocity.org) the specific projects that are important to you.

 

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Next-Gen Bike Lanes

The following was originally published in our Spring 2013 Spoken Wheel newsletter.

BIKE LANES 2.0
The next generation of bike facilities will blow your mind

BikeLanes2.0key

In all corners of America, we are seeing innovative solutions for bicycles on our roadways. The goal of many of these facilites is to create a safer more inviting space to get more people comfortable riding bicycles.

To share this incredible progress, we put together this quick guide for you. We hope it will inspire you to think big as we shape the future of bicycles in SLO County together!

GETTIN’ IT DONE IN SLO COUNTY

The road towards innovative spaces for bicycles in SLO County is long, but the Bicycle Coalition is in it for the longhaul. We are determined to make our communities beacons for bicycles in the golden state of California. Unfortunately, the drive and energy to pursue these successful strategies won’t come from our local leaders and government staff – it comes from you!

With your help, we can make these visions a reality. Join the Bicycle Coalition today to strengthen our voice for bicycles countywide. The more members we have, the faster we can move towards completing our bike paths and putting these innovative solutions to work in your neighborhood.

BikeBox

A bike box is a designated area at the head of a traffic lane at a signalized intersection that provides bicyclists with a safe and visible way to get ahead of queuing traffic during the red signal phase.

SEEN IN: Boston MA, Austin TX, Madison WI
COST: $
PROS: Greatly increases visibility of bicyclists.
Helps prevent ‘right-hook’ conflicts with turning vehicles at intersections.
Facilitates bicyclist left turn positioning during red signal.
Pedestrians benefit from reduced vehicle encroachment into the crosswalk.

BikeCorrals

On street bicycle parking spaces allow bicyclists to ride straight up to park their bicycles. One vehicle parking spot can accomodate over 10 bicycles. These corrals can be easily branded to promote neighboring businesses or areas.

SEEN IN: Long Beach CA, Missoula MT, Seattle WA
COST: $$
PROS: Decreases sidewalk conflicts between bicycles and pedestrians by preventing bicycle riding on the sidewalk and improper bicycle parking. Increases storefront visibility for businesses. One vehicle parking spot can accomodate over 10 bicycle customers.

Continue reading

2012: A Landmark Year for Bicycles

The following is a letter from our Executive Director, Dan Rivoire, originally published in our Winter 2013 Spoken Wheel newsletter. As we are approaching a beautiful spring season, full of bicycle fun and events countywide, we are reminded of our ambition, innovation and commitment to make SLO County a great place for bicycles – and it’s all possible because of our dues paying members, volunteers and donations from community members like you!

————–

In January 2010 the Bicycle Coalition quietly launched a campaign designed to respond to the question: “what does the Coalition actually do?” Our goal was to make it painstakingly clear that we work extremely hard to achieve the mission laid out by our founders; to improve the quality of life in San Luis Obispo County through bicycling advocacy, education, and inspiration. Our strategy revolved around creating strong programs with tangible benefit to the community while improving communications across the board. In order to succeed, we needed to get the respect of the bicycle riding public while capturing the attention of everyone else in the Central Coast. 

“Our goal was to make it painstakingly clear that we work extremely hard to achieve the mission laid out by our founders; to improve the quality of life in San Luis Obispo County through bicycling advocacy, education, and inspiration.”

Three years have passed since we took the first step towards accomplishing our goal and moved into our headquarters at the corner of Morro and Pacific in downtown San Luis Obispo. With the move we brought on the most ambitious addition to our empowerment focused programs while giving the community an image to visualize every time they think of the Bicycle Coalition. Becoming established at our prominent home on the Bill Roalman bike boulevard has been transformational. It is no mistake that 2012 was the strongest year on record for the Bicycle Coalition.

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These three years have built upon the foundation laid by the staff, board, volunteers, and members during our creation in 2001. The foundation is not subsidized bicycles, valet parking, education, or advocacy efforts; it is the understanding that residents are driven by their desire to make San Luis Obispo County an incredible place live, work, and play. Our success is connected directly to the fact that every effort of the Bicycle Coalition relates to that foundation.

Recently, while reflecting on the three years spent in our headquarters, I caught myself thinking, “where has all the time gone?” Before I could blink, a list of epic proportions began to accumulate in my mind. Approved bike plans in every jurisdiction in the County, new active transportation infrastructure projects constructed, increased state and federal funding for active transportation projects, incredible impact through our four programs, and membership numbers growing at lightening speed. Emphasizing direct service and communication has resulted in the best financial position in our history.

“All of this hard work has primed the Bicycle Coalition for incredible growth. We dream of a Central Coast connected by regional paths, filled with bike lanes, and engaged by unbelievable community events. We believe that the Bicycle Coalition will become the strongest voice for community well being on the Central Coast.”

All of this hard work has primed the Bicycle Coalition for incredible growth. We dream of a Central Coast connected by regional paths, filled with bike lanes, and engaged by unbelievable community events. We believe that the Bicycle Coalition will become the strongest voice for community well being on the Central Coast. We will positively contribute to our community in the context of education, health, transportation, culture, and economy. Your support is the reason we exist and the reason we grow. Our gratitude is endless yet we know that your continued investment will best advance our cause. We ask you to look towards the horizon, realize our potential, and put your passion into action. 2013 should put 2012 to shame!

Dan_outofthesaddleBW05See you in the Bike Lane,

Dan Rivoire, Executive Director

2012 Election Questionnaires

The Bicycle Coalition sent the following questions to all candidates running for office throughout the Central Coast:
  1. In your opinion, how do biking and walking fit into the transportation system in your community/district?
  2. Would you like to increase or decrease the number of people biking and walking for transportation and recreation in your community/district, why?
  3. What steps would you take to increase or decrease the number of people biking and walking for transportation and recreation in your community/district?
  4. What specific accomplishments/qualifications demonstrate your capacity to improve the transportation system in your community/district?
  5. What else should members of the San Luis Obispo County Bicycle Coalition know about you before going to the polls?

All questionnaires returned to the Bicycle Coalition can be viewed/downloaded as a pdf, sorted by jurisdiction by clicking here. (Simply click on the right hand column to view the answers from any given candidate)

The SLO County Bicycle Coalition does not and has not endorsed any candidate running for office.

The information contained in this pdf is intended for informational purposes only.

City of SLO Circulation Update: More Bicycles!

The City of San Luis Obispo is in the process of updating the Land Use and Circulation element of the City’s General Plan. These parts of the plan relate specifically to creating a guide for future development, preservation and mobility (how we get around) San Luis Obispo.

This Land Use and Circulation update is part of the City’s General Plan, the blueprint for the future. It is representative of the values and vision of the community, and your opinion matters.

Our local governments know we people are interested in more bicycle connectivity in SLO and beyond, but they might not know that a majority of people want these improvements. This is your chance to have your voice heard and help increase the number of bikeways locally.

Wednesday May 16th is the first public workshop for this update, and you are invited to attend and speak up on behalf of better bikeways in San Luis Obispo. The Bicycle Coalition will be there, on behalf of our 600 members, to share our vision for better bicycle facilities in the city.

If you can’t attend the workshop, we’d encourage you to take their online survey to share your support for bicycles in the city. All responses are anonymous, and can have a large impact on the update of the plan. Take the survey here.

When: Wednesday May 16th, 6:30 pm
Where: The Monday Club, 1815 Monterey St, SLO (map)
Why: Help shape the vision of connectivity in San Luis Obispo

Bike Hanger

Check out this awesome concept project from Manifesto Architecture, based in New York. It’s a vertical bicycle parking system, intended to be used in spaces where space above the sidewalk is under-utilized.

The users pedal the bicycle on the bottom to rotate the hanger until their bicycle is ‘delivered’ to them on the ground level. Genius! We’d love to see one of these in action… maybe one day.

Women, Bikes and Business

Here at the Coalition, we know that bicycling is an all-inclusive movement: the more the better! The Huffington Post currently has a great article about why women on bicycles is good for business, and our future. Seems like we’ve been seeing more bicycle related articles on the press these days, a great sign for the future of bicycles and much more…

And, while bike-related terms are certainly “trending,” you’d miss out if you thought that was all it was. Biking represents a simple activity and lifestyle change that could affect so many of the big, societal issues we face today: carbon emissions, urban transportation, and obesity — as well as some that are not given the priority they should, such as community-building and connection with nature.

-Andrea Learned

photo via copenhagencyclechic.com

Transportation Funding Press Conference

The future of transportation funding is important for bicycle and pedestrian facilities, for our local economy, for job creation, and many other reasons. Congresswoman Lois Capps is going to be in San Luis Obispo to talk about these issues, and what we can do to ensure the future of biking and walking is not in jeopardy.

WHAT: Transportation Funding Press Conference (w/ Lois Capps)

WHEN: Wednesday, August 31st, 10:30 – 11:00 am

WHERE: Corner of Johnson Ave and Buchon St (map)

WHY: Join us, and various local officials, to discuss the importance of funding infrastructure for creating jobs and boosting our local economy, and how the proposed House Transportation Committee plan would cut funding by 33% and jeopardize construction jobs and transportation improvements in SLO County

Speaking in order
Congresswoman Lois Capps
Jan Marx, Mayor of San Luis Obispo
Adam Hill, Chairman of SLO County Board of Supervisors
Bruce Gibson, Chairman of SLO County Council of Governments/County Supervisor
Dan Rivoire, Executive Director of SLO County Bicycle Coalition

 

Member Profile: Vanessa, Ella & Cora

Vanessa Amerson, San Luis Obispo

How long have you been a Coalition member? 2008

When did you start bicycling? When I was 6 on a cruiser with wooden blocks on the pedals

Why do you bike? I hate Cars and parking and paying for parking. And I like saying “good morning” to neighbors and chatting with friends

How many bikes do you own? 5, all very different

How often do you ride? Commutishly about 10 trips a week

What kind of riding do you do? Costumed SLO-hemian, Amateur Ballet

What do you think the most important thing the Coalition has done in our area? Joined the people to create a voice of advocacy

What changes/improvements have you seen since you lived here? Bike Blvd, Bike Kitchen, Bike signal, Bike parking

What additional changes would you like to see? Better Bike facilities at the Elementary and Jr. High Schools

What’s your favorite ride? To and from school with my daughters

What’s your advice to encourage others to get on their bikes? If you find a bike you love you are more likely to ride it and a bike doesn’t have to be expensive to fall in love with it.

How do you get involved with Coalition? I encourage parents and kids to practice riding together at Kidical Mass

What’s your favorite Coalition program? The Bike Kitchen

Anything else you want to add? Biking makes happy easily accessible.

Cora, San Luis Obispo

When did you start bicycling? When I was 4

Why do you bike? Because it’s fun

How many bikes do you own? 2

How often do you ride? Very often with my dad and most of the time with my mom

What kind of riding do you do? Regular riding

What do you think the most important thing the Coalition has done in our area? Help with Kidical Mass

What changes/improvements have you seen since you lived here? None

What additional changes would you like to see? I want everyone to like me

What’s your favorite ride? Kidical Mass

Anything else you want to add? Ella’s bike is shiny and mine isn’t

Ella, San Luis Obispo

When did you start bicycling? When I was 5

Why do you bike? It’s fun

How many bikes do you own? 2

How often do you ride? Whenever I’m with my mom

What kind of riding do you do? Kidical Mass riding

What do you think the most important thing the Coalition has done in our area? Keeping people safe when they’re riding bicycles

What changes/improvements have you seen since you lived here? I’ve seen a lot of people on bikes.

What additional changes would you like to see? A BIG sign in front of Bike Valet that says “Bike Coalition”

What’s your favorite ride? SLO Little 500

What’s your advice to encourage others to get on their bikes? All you have to do is pedal

How do you get involved with Coalition? I tell my friends about Kidical Mass

What’s your favorite Coalition program? Kidical Mass because sometimes the Childrens Museum brings crafts and you can put them on your bike

Anything else you want to add? When people help out at the Kitchen they help people get their bikes fixed and that makes people happy.

Ray LaHood at 2010 National Bike Summit

US Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood recently addressed atendees of the 2010 National Bike Summit in Washington DC, here he spoke on behalf of infrastructure development for bicycles and pedestrians:

After the speech, he wrote a post on his blog that reflected on his energetic appearance at the summit:

Today, I want to announce a sea change. People across America who value bicycling should have a voice when it comes to transportation planning. This is the end of favoring motorized transportation at the expense of non-motorized.

Ray LaHood

From Ray LaHood’s blog post:

To set this approach in motion, we have formulated key recommendations for state DOTs and communities:

  • Treat walking and bicycling as equals with other transportation modes.
  • Ensure convenient access for people of all ages and abilities.
  • Go beyond minimum design standards.
  • Collect data on walking and biking trips.
  • Set a mode share target for walking and bicycling.
  • Protect sidewalks and shared-use paths the same way roadways are protected (for example, snow removal)
  • Improve nonmotorized facilities during maintenance projects.

This is great news for cyclists and pedestrians alike, giving us even more of a reason to get out on our bikes and celebrate!

flying bike lanes

Martin Angelov created this new method for urban transport for the Line of Site competition this past year.  His work, Kolelinia, aims to  “not only be a transport, it has to be an experience,”

An idea that began in it’s early stages with the concept of flying bike lanes, quickly turned to an infrastructure that would exist above ground for bicycle transport.  His implementation is well thought out, and includes many safety features that aren’t often addressed in revolutionary ideas like this.  For more information about the project, check it out on ArchDaily here.