Action Alert: Federal House Bill Threatens Safe Streets

The Seat of GovernmentThe new transportation bill is a huge set back for bicyclists around the country. According to the American League of Cyclists, the bill:

  • “Destroys Transportation Enhancements by making the program optional
  • Repeals the Safe Routes to School program, reversing years of progress in creating safe ways for kids to walk and ride bicycles to school
  • Allows states to build bridges without safe access for pedestrians and bicycles
  • Eliminates bicycle and pedestrian coordinators in state DOTs
  • Eliminates language that insures that rumble strips “do not adversely affect the safety or mobility of bicyclists, pedestrians or the disabled”

Yikes! After so much progress has been made, this bill is extremely troublesome and would do a great disservice to those of us working to make our cities a better place for pedestrians and bicyclists.

You can learn more and make a difference by reading the information and contacting your representative automatically via the League of American Cyclists website. Please tell your friends and don’t delay – let your elected officials know how much you value safe streets.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Dave Hosford

Bicycle Benefits Coming to Provo

Want 20% off your hamburger for riding your bike? A free drink for locking up to a tree instead of taking up a parking space? Bicyclists may soon be able to get deals and discounts like these as Provo begins to take part in the national Bicycle Benefits program.

The Daily Herald reports:

“Zac Whitmore — who leads Provo Bicycle Committee and the Provo Bicycle Collective — said he and other bicyclists are trying to spread information about the program to both Provo residents and local businesses. He said Provo cyclists are hoping to have the program operating in the city by spring and are talking to an array of local restaurants and other businesses about participation.

Whitmore explained that participating businesses obtain stickers from the Bicycle Benefits website, then sell them to cyclists, usually for $5. The result is a symbiotic relationship that benefits both customers who receive discounts, as well as business owners.”

The stickers aren’t available yet. But, the Bike Committee is working on selling the idea to local shops and restaurants. Keep watching the blog for updates.

Hey Provo Cyclists, Is That Air You’re Breathing Really Safe?

Aamusumussa 2.10.2011
As winter (sort of) gets underway, this is just a reminder about how important it is for valley cyclists to keep track of air quality.

Provo usually has pretty decent air. But, because of the inversion in the valley, on some days we have the worst air in the nation. On these days, residents are encouraged to avoid using their cars and further contributing to the problem. However, it is also unsafe to do laborious physical exercise outdoors. (I’m not exaggerating here. Schools keep kids inside. And, if you go for a wild bike ride, your lungs will be seriously displeased).

To check the Provo air quality forecast, you can always take a look at airquality.utah.gov.

The bad news is that you can’t ride on bad air quality days. The good news is that by riding a bike instead of driving on good air quality days, you can help eliminate the pollution problem in the valley and make the air cleaner for all of us to breathe. Thanks for riding!

Creative Commons License photo credit: Aken kuvia

Herald Celebrates Year-Round Bicycling in Provo

Wet butt in the makingThe Daily Herald recently ran an article about year-round cyclists in the city. The article featured Provo Bicyclist Committee member Jennifer Peck and her Electra Townie:

“Like many people, Peck spends most of her days in an office, in her case working on the front lines of Utah’s legal system. But when the court parking lot fills up on busy days, Peck never has trouble finding a place to park. When the inversion smothers the valley in exhaust, Peck knows she’s not contributing to the problem. And, she said with a chuckle, riding a bike is a little bit of forced exercise every day.

Peck not only commutes via bicycle, she also relies on it as her primary mode of transportation. And when she can’t bike to her destination she takes the bus or catches a ride with a friend. For years now, she hasn’t even owned a car.”

Many local cyclists aren’t afraid to ride through a bit of rain or snow. But, this winter has been so spring-like that the bike lanes are filled daily with happy-go-lucky riders enjoying the sun.

A big thanks to Jennifer Peck and committee chairman Zac Whitmore for making January cycling more tempting to Provo riders.

Creative Commons License photo credit: bradhoc

Rocketship Brainstorms Unique Designs for New Provo Bike Racks

Last month several bike committee members met with local design firm Rocketship to put our heads together and brainstorm ideas for the new downtown Provo bike racks.

Rocketship has very generously offered their time and talents to design unique bike racks for Provo, unlike those awkward tire-crushing monstrosities that you see cyclists struggling with every now and then.

During the meeting, we discussed the need for racks that allow cyclists to lock up to their bikes in several places, racks that were accessible without cluttering the sidewalks, and racks that had unique design elements. Some possibilities also included: racks with seat covers, racks that created a lit meeting space for cyclists, and racks that could be added onto existing elements in the downtown (like added onto a bench, for example).

No final decisions have been made. But, just take a look at some of the amazing initial designs Rocketship created for us below:

Do you have a favorite? Send us a note at bikeprovo@gmail(dot)com. Or, comment below.