This is the time of year when the snow teaches us the following: – how excessively wide Provo’s streets are – how much we taxpayers waste to lay and maintain unused asphalt – how big of an opportunity we have to repurpose this street space What would you do with this space? Let’s hear your ideas! @provocity

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#bikewalkprovostories Andy Loy “I bike to and from work primarily to avoid buying another a car. My wife is pregnant and we have a little girl and they stay with our car. I use the scooter on good weather days and my bike on bad weather days. I used to run to the bus but I got a running injury, so now I bike and scooter. Anything to avoid buying another car! The number one thing that would make walking safer would be people saying, “On your left.” My wife loves to walk but she doesn’t much anymore because it gives her anxiety. Also, I don’t know what would solve it but I feel like a lot of people don’t see me. I used to ride a motorcycle but I quit because it’s too dangerous in Provo. Whenever I’m in protected bicycle lanes I feel a lot safer.”

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#bikewalkprovostories Lauren Miller “Cars are more expensive and since it’s just me, I can get around without one. I really enjoy walking and I have a lot of anxiety around driving, so if I can get around without driving, I’m just fine with that. I take UVX and the 850 route to get from my home in Provo to work in Pleasant Grove every day. I also walk and take the bus to run errands. The buses run frequently enough that I haven’t had any issues. People are always so surprised, but I can get around fine and it makes me feel better about my impact on the planet with carpooling and transit.”

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#bikewalkprovostories Kristi Jensen “Growing up, my family loved to go on walks. We would always take family walks. Even now, I will go on 2 hour walks with my dog Jasper. However, I was lucky enough to have my mom live with me the last few years of her life. Keeping with tradition, my mom and I would go on walks, accompanied by Jasper and me pushing mom in her wheelchair. Most often, we would walk around Lions Park. We would often walk to church as well. It was delightful even though we did come across many obstacles – lack of sidewalks, sidewalks ending abruptly, or curbs at the end of the sidewalk. We didn’t let this hold us back, however I was really excited when the neighborhood installed a sidewalk along 800 W. Then I was able to take my mom completely around the block safely!”

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#bikewalkprovostories Karen Spencer and family “What we love best about not owning a car is all of the walks we take together. When we go to the Rec Center, the library, Church, or shopping, we walk to get there. Even if we use a bus, we walk to the bus and then walk from the bus to our destination. The kids jump, wiggle, run, pick up leaves and sticks, and talk. Sometimes they drag their feet and complain, but they know we have to keep going because there’s no other option! :) My husband and I went for a long walk on our first date and the conversation we had set the tone for our whole future together. When my husband and I want time alone together now, we still go for a walk and talk. The other side of this story is that walking for us has also been a financial necessity. Selling our car in 2009 allowed us to pay the rent and to make ends meet in the years that followed. I especially appreciated that it meant I could stay home and homeschool our kids even though my husband was in grad school. Eleven years and a PhD later, it isn’t as financially necessary, but living without a car allows us to save up for home repairs and other projects that are important to us. And it keeps me humble, knowing that many of my fellow Provo residents are in the same situation we were in just a few years ago. ————————————————————– Provo has been a *great* place to walk, but if I were to suggest any improvements based on my experiences, they would be: 1) make sure sidewalks don’t end without warning along busy streets 2) provide sufficient lighting at every intersection 3) make sure grocery stores can be safely reached on foot with little kids, or by those in wheelchairs, by making sure there are good sidewalks nearby and having a clearly marked walking route through the grocery store parking lot 4) require security/convex mirrors or warning lights at the exit of every underground parking garage Those four things would make walking with little children much, much safer. We also thoroughly appreciate the UVX and other reliable bus routes and we’re excited to see continued investment in public transportation! “

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#bikewalkprovostories Karen Spencer and family “What we love best about not owning a car is all of the walks we take together. When we go to the Rec Center, the library, Church, or shopping, we walk to get there. Even if we use a bus, we walk to the bus and then walk from the bus to our destination. The kids jump, wiggle, run, pick up leaves and sticks, and talk. Sometimes they drag their feet and complain, but they know we have to keep going because there’s no other option! :) My husband and I went for a long walk on our first date and the conversation we had set the tone for our whole future together. When my husband and I want time alone together now, we still go for a walk and talk. The other side of this story is that walking for us has also been a financial necessity. Selling our car in 2009 allowed us to pay the rent and to make ends meet in the years that followed. I especially appreciated that it meant I could stay home and homeschool our kids even though my husband was in grad school. Eleven years and a PhD later, it isn’t as financially necessary, but living without a car allows us to save up for home repairs and other projects that are important to us. And it keeps me humble, knowing that many of my fellow Provo residents are in the same situation we were in just a few years ago. ————————————————————– Provo has been a *great* place to walk, but if I were to suggest any improvements based on my experiences, they would be: 1) make sure sidewalks don’t end without warning along busy streets 2) provide sufficient lighting at every intersection 3) make sure grocery stores can be safely reached on foot with little kids, or by those in wheelchairs, by making sure there are good sidewalks nearby and having a clearly marked walking route through the grocery store parking lot 4) require security/convex mirrors or warning lights at the exit of every underground parking garage Those four things would make walking with little children much, much safer. We also thoroughly appreciate the UVX and other reliable bus routes and we’re excited to see continued investment in public transportation! “

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#bikewalkprovostories Kristi Jensen “Growing up, my family loved to go on walks. We would always take family walks. Even now, I will go on 2 hour walks with my dog Jasper. However, I was lucky enough to have my mom live with me the last few years of her life. Keeping with tradition, my mom and I would go on walks, accompanied by Jasper and me pushing mom in her wheelchair. Most often, we would walk around Lions Park. We would often walk to church as well. It was delightful even though we did come across many obstacles – lack of sidewalks, sidewalks ending abruptly, or curbs at the end of the sidewalk. We didn’t let this hold us back, however I was really excited when the neighborhood installed a sidewalk along 800 W. Then I was able to take my mom completely around the block safely!”

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There is a gap in the Provo/Orem UVX bus rapid transit line. Original plans called for a stop on 900 East near the BYU Creamery and Heritage Halls student housing. However, neighborhood opposition killed it and left a one-mile gap in the line at a key area with thousands of likely riders. In partnership with residents of the Wasatch, Foothills, and Oak Hills neighborhood, BikeWalk Provo has collected signatures of 212 residents of those neighborhoods who are in support of the bus stop–many opinions have changed since the BRT system has been put in place. Neither BYU, UTA, nor Provo City have made any indication that they will be building this stop–each is passing the buck (hence the Spiderman meme). We are now calling on Provo City Government to take the lead on partnering with UTA and BYU on building the 900 East UVX stop, ideally during the construction of the BYU Music Building to save taxpayer money. Please join us in a letter-writing campaign. Link in bio.

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