Austin Taylor

About Austin Taylor

As Bike Provo's communications director, Austin is in charge of communicating Bike Provo's messaging to the public. Professionally, Austin Taylor began working for Bicycle Collective in 2015 and quickly became Provo's first location director. He's been key in growing Provo Bicycle Collective; giving away nearly 200 more bikes, creating several jobs, and increasing revenues by 300% within in his first year. He is the founder of Provo's Earn-a-Bike program, Jr. Mechanics Certification program, and Goodwill Bikes program. Austin's goal is to build Provo Bicycle Collective into an established, recognizable organization with lasting impact. He is currently a full-time student at BYU's Kennedy Center for International Studies and Marriott School of Business studying Latin American Studies and Nonprofit Management. Austin spends his spare time performing music throughout Utah Valley and cycling with his wife Elise.

Provo Bicycle Committee Member Writes Senior Thesis on Bicycle Advocacy

Hey all,

Austin Taylor here.

I’ve written something I think you all will enjoy.

This week, I graduate from BYU. Since my senior thesis is about bicycle advocacy, I thought I would share it with you all. It focuses on how the quality of our communication makes all the difference in advocacy. My paper contains thoughts from my own experience and from urbanists like Jane Jacobs, Janette Sadik-Khan, and Mikael Colville-Anderson. Because of the type of person you, as a reader of BikeProvo.org, probably are–engaged, involved, maybe even WOKE–the paper will contain strategies that you can immediately apply in your own activism.

After 193 college credits, two majors, and two minors, I’ve finally graduated. I’m surprised it only took four years. Thank you to my mentors along the way like Dr. Aaron Skabelund of the history department, Dr. Brough and Dr. Coleman of the percussion studio, and Dr. Shumway of Latin American Studies. Thanks also to my wife who has let me be a workaholic for the duration of our marriage so far.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy this paper!

Benefits of the Bulldog Boulevard Improvement Project and More Info

The following are a few excerpts from the Project Concept Report, which the Regional Planning Committee used to approve $3 million of MAG funds for the project.  If the project deviates significantly from the Project Scope it will have to go back through the Technical Advisory Committee and be re-approved by the Regional Planning Committee, which consists of all the mayors and county commissioners in Utah County.  If they do not accept changes made to the project the $3 million will be allocated to the next eligible project (Springville 1200 W or Mapleton Lateral Canal Trail).

The Purpose of the Project
“The purpose of the project is to construct a raised center median to eliminate left turn movements along the Bulldog Blvd corridor which has a crash rate that is 3 times higher than the state average for roadways of similar functional class and traffic volumes.  The corridor has a severe crash rate that is 7.5 times higher than the statewide average for roadways of similar functional class and traffic volume.  The project will also eliminate one travel lane in each direction in favor of a protected bicycle lane.  There is a significant number of bicycle crashes on the corridor given the lack of adequate bicycle facilities on this important gateway into the BYU campus.  The project will provide an important bicycle/pedestrian connection from the Provo River Parkway Trail to the BYU campus.”
First Responders Access
“The project will include traffic cameras, and emergency vehicle preemption which will provide maximum benefit to emergency vehicles and traffic operations along the corridor.
Decreased Auto Crashes
The project will reduce accident severity by eliminating high occurence left turn angle crashes and by separating bikes and peds from vehicle traffic.  UDOT Traffic and Safety has evaluated the project and has determined that the project improvements have a total cost/benefit of $4.4 million dollars based on the crash reduction potential of the proposed improvements.
Decreased Congestion
By minimizing the number of driveway accesses, traffic flow along the corridor will improve.
Beautification and Noise Reduction
The project will minimize noise impacts along the corridor adding landscaping features to soften the noise.  The project also provides opportunities for landscaping and other treatments that can be incorporated into the drainage system that will improve water quality of storm runoff”

For more information, see this detailed report from Mountainlands Association of Governments

The Decision to Fund Bulldog Boulevard Improvements is Down to the Wire!

A month or two ago, we told you about the major improvements that were being planned for Bulldog Boulevard. These improvements would dramatically improve safety for a road that is seven times more deadly than average, beautify this ugly street, and, as council member Dave Sewell put it, save lives. However, those improvements may not happen without your voice.

Sadly, many residents intend to keep this street the high-speed, wide-open road is now is. This would maintain the high level of traffic crashes–more than seven times the state average–and continue to discourage cycling. These people have already blasted the city council with messaging in opposition of the project. What do they oppose? An increased car travel time of only four seconds in one direction and forty seconds in the other during peak traffic hours. That’s a small price to pay for safety.

Because of that opposition, the council is split on the decision to fund the project. Currently, three of the seven council members are opposed to the project and one is still undecided. This is too close to call.

We need your voice!

Tomorrow, the city council will be discussing this project and potentially making a decision on wether it should go through or not. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Attend the City Council Work Meeting tomorrow (Tuesday, June 19) and voice your support. We estimate the City Council will begin talking about Bulldog Boulevard at 2:20pm.
  2. Email the City Council to voice your support of the project if you cannot attend. Send your message to council@provo.org. Key talking points in support of the project include safety improvements and city beautification. If you drive a car on that road, please mention how unsafe it feels in a car currently.

Don’t wait!Your inaction could cause this project to fail. Join us in voicing your support today!

Looking for BYU Students who Cycle on Bulldog Boulevard

As you are probably aware, the Bulldog project, which will improve safety for all users on this important corridor, is slated to be completed next spring. Yesterday the Campus Bicycle Committee participated in a meeting between Provo City Public Works and BYU’s Physical Facilities about how to make sure there is a safe and seamless transition across Canyon Road and onto campus. To do that will probably require BYU to widen the road slightly at the entrance to campus at 1230 North.

The administration has asked our committee to gather some bike usage data and we agreed that complementing that with some anecdotal evidence, specifically student voices sharing their experiences riding on Bulldog and up 1230 North would help us better make the case to the BYU Campus Planning Committee.

Could you please by next Monday share a paragraph or two about your experience as a bicyclist on Bulldog and 1230 North? (Did you, for example, feel safe riding on the shoulder began before the bike lane began near the entrance to the RB?) Also, if you know of any other students or former students who took that route, despite how dangerous it is, could you please ask them to share their experiences with me by next Monday?

BTW, some opposition to the project has emerged within Provo among those who can’t countenance the thought of an auto lane becoming a protected bike lane so if you could please complete this four-question, one-minute city survey I’d be very appreciative. (Please use your Provo address and please share with others.)

Many thanks,

Aaron Skabelund
Associate Professor
Department of History
Brigham Young University

Advocacy Alert: Provo Needs Your Voice!

Bulldog Boulevard and 500 West Redesigns

Provo is considering plans for Bulldog Boulevard and 500 West that are designed to slow car traffic and add bike lanes.

Sadly, many residents intend to keep these streets the high-speed, wide-open roads they currently are. This would maintain the high level of traffic crashes–more than seven times the state average–and continue to discourage cycling along those routes. These people have already blasted the city government with messaging in opposition of the project.

We need your voice now to encourage our city government to install bicycle-friendly infrastructure so all road users can be safe.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Public Comment on Bulldog Boulevard: Provo City and UDOT want to hear your thoughts on the initial project design. Submit comments to the project team. Contact 888-966-6624 or provobulldogblvd@gmail.com.
  2. Online Comment on Bulldog Boulevard: Follow the link to comment on the proposed design.
  3. 500 West Design Open House: June 13 from 5-7pm at the Provo Recreation Center. Learn more about the project design.
  4. Contact your city council representative and voice your support for bicycle-friendly roads. Call (801) 852-6000 or email Council@provo.org

Provo Bike Month 2018

From the mayor’s blog:

Provo Bike Month!

Save the date! May is National Bike Month and Provo will be celebrating the many benefits of bicycling! Whether you bike to work or school, ride to save money or time, pump those pedals to preserve your health or the environment, or simply to explore your community – you’re going to love the events and activities we’ve got planned. We’ve put together a month full of events and activities to celebrate the unique power of the bicycle and the many reasons we ride!

Bike to Work Day
Tuesday, May 1 | 7:30-9:00 am Breakfast Stations hosted by employers, large & small, across the city
 
Provo businesses will host stations located throughout the city and hand out free breakfast, drinks, and other treats to people who arrive by bike from 7:30 – 9:00 am. (Provo City’s breakfast station will be open at 6:30 am for early bird riders.) Pick up some breakfast, get to know your fellow commuters, have your bike looked at by a pro mechanic, and connect with the Provo Bike Committee and other community volunteers. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Get-Yourself-a-Bike Sale
May 1-5, Provo Bicycle Collective
 
You want to participate in Bike Month, but you don’t have a bike or maybe not the bike you want. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Provo Bicycle Collective is lowering its already-low prices store-wide. EVERYTHING in the shop is 10% off from Tuesday, May 1 through Saturday, May 5. Come get yourself a bike, bell, basket, bag, or anything else! It doesn’t even have to start with the letter “B”! Refurbished adult bikes generally range from $100-$350 and kids’ bikes range from $30-150. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Free Bike Maintenance Class
Wednesday, May 2 | 7:00 pm
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
A good bike is an investment that will last decades if properly maintained. But how do you maintain your bike?
Join us for a no-nonsense presentation about the essentials of basic bike maintenance taught by PBC’s senior bike mechanic and shop operations manager Ikaika Cox. You’ll walk away knowing how to keep your bike running reliably all year. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Bike Art Stroll
Friday, May 4 | 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Downtown Provo at Participating Businesses
 
Grab your bike and pedal on over for Downtown Provo’s May Art Stroll on Saturday, May 4 from 6-9 pm. Enjoy the good weather, good art, good music, and good company! There will be a variety of art galleries participating. Be sure to look for the “Gallery Open” signs in front of each participating gallery as you stroll downtown. You can pick up an event map at any of the locations.
 
Social Bike Rides
Wednesday, May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 | 8:00 pm
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
No racing, no spandex, just a good-old ride around the city.
Join PBC staff as we ride through Provo and explore places you may have never been. The ride will be different each night, so join us for all of them. All ages and abilities welcome. Don’t forget your bike lights! To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Women’s Night Open House
Monday, May 7 | 4:00 – 7:00 pm
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
Bicycle maintenance has traditionally been an overwhelmingly male-dominated trade. Let’s change that!
Join your female-community on Monday, May 7 for a Women’s Night Open House to eat snacks, weld friendships, and check out the shop to see what we do on Women’s Volunteer Nights! Drop in anytime between 4 and 7pm. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Bike Theft Prevention Class
Wednesday, May 9 | 7:00 pm
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
About 1,000 bikes are stolen each year in Provo. Will yours be next?
Join PBC location director Austin Taylor as we discuss how to keep your bike safe and recover it if stolen. Bike locks will be 10% off that night. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Overnight Bike Trip to Nunn’s Park
Friday, May 11 @ 6:00 pm to Saturday, May 12 @ 10am
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
Get out of the city and into the mountains by pedal power. Join PBC staff as we cruise the Provo River Trail up to Nunn’s Park to camp. Bring your loved ones or meet some new friends around the campfire! All ages are welcome.
Registration fee includes camping fee, campfire wood, and s’mores. Campers will need to bring their own sleeping arrangements (hammock, tent, sleeping bag, etc.), food, water, and some warm clothing for the night. If you do not have racks or bags to carry your gear on your bike, we’ll have a bike trailer that can carry up to 100lbs of gear and will happily shuttle your stuff. 
 
CycloFemme Ride
Saturday, May 12 | 1:00 pm
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
CycloFemme is a Global Celebration of Women created TO HONOR THE PAST from the shoulders of those who stood before us, for the freedom to choose and the chance to wear pants. TO CELEBRATE THE PRESENT with strength and courage, voices raised, moving together. TO EMPOWER THE FUTURE of women everywhere, the backbone of positive social change. Join PBC program manager Kira Johnson for a fun, casual ride around the city for women of all ages and abilities. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Worldwide Ride of Silence
Wednesday, May 16 | Meet @ 6:30 pm, Ride starts @ 7:00 pm Dixon Middle School (750 W 200 N)
 
Join the Provo chapter of the Worldwide Ride of Silence on May 16th to ride to honor people who were killed or injured while biking this last year and last several years. We will begin at Dixon Middle School and go for a short, slow, silent ride with brief stops at the ghost bike memorials for Doug Crow and Mark Robinson, and return to Dixon Middle School where we will have light refreshments.
 
Bike-in Movie
Friday, May 18 | 9:00 pm
Provo Bicycle Collective
 
Think of it as a drive-in movie without the tailpipe emissions.
Join us at the shop for a movie night featuring “Rising from Ashes”, a film about Rwandans who used the bicycle to recover from genocide. Bring the whole family and snacks to share! To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Free Bicycle Safety Check and Demo
Saturday, May 19 | | 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Riverview Park
 
As part of our initiative to support our community, Mad Dog Cycles will be partnering with Provo City and the Utah County Health Department to do a series of Bicycle and Helmet safety check events. Bring your Bicycle and Helmet to Riverview Park between 8am and Noon on May 19th for a FREE safety check (a $25 value in-store). We will also have the latest and greatest in bicycle technology with us for you to test ride. New pedal assist, Mountain and Road bikes will be on hand for FREE test rides. To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Pedal Provo Ghost Tour
Saturday, May 19 | 9:00 pm
Provo City Cemetery
 
Pedal Provo Ghost Tour is holding a very special tour in celebration of Provo Bike Month! Tickets are required to come on this ride so please visit their website: https://pedalprovo.com/provo-bike-month-ghost-tour for more info and to claim your spot!
 
7th Annual FFUFR Forest Race
Friday, May 25 | 7:00 pm
Paul Ream Wilderness Park
 
FFUFR stands for Fun, Fun Underground Forest Race. Yes, it’s that fun.
Join us for a ridiculous race through the forest and streams at Paul Ream Wilderness Park. Bikes will be provided. Please bring your helmet and a side to share for the BBQ! All ages and abilities are welcome, racing is not required; you can just watch if you’d like! To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.
 
Bikes & Trikes Festival
Saturday, May 26 | 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Memorial Park
 
Grab your family, friends, and neighbors and pedal on over to Memorial Park (800 E Center St) on Saturday, May 26th from 11:00 am – 1:00 pm. You’ll want to bring your bikes, trikes and training wheels for some fun cycling festivities your whole family will enjoy! To stay up to date on event details, RSVP to the Facebook Event Page.

Provo Bicycle Collective Gives Free Bikes to 53 Children

From BicycleCollective.org:

“On Saturday, March 24th, dozens of children lined up to receive a free bicycle from Provo Bicycle Collective.

Within one hour, PBC had given all 53 bikes to children for free.

Our hope is that each bike recipient uses his or her bike to get to school each day and continues that habit into adulthood. This way, we can reduce traffic, clean Utah’s air, and create a healthier population.

We need your support in this cause!

Donate money or bikes today. $30 provides a bike for a child in need! Please give today!

Provo Bicycle Collective Invites Women to Volunteer

From BicycleCollective.org

“Bike mechanics has traditionally been a male-dominated trade. Let’s change that.

Women’s volunteer hours are designed to create a safe and inclusive space for learning bike mechanics. All bicycles repaired by volunteers are given away to people who couldn’t otherwise afford one, giving independent transportation to those who need it most. Our goal in creating this program will be reached if women feel included in our volunteer program.

We invite all women and other female-identifying people to join us during these volunteer hours to repair bikes for those in need. We need your help!

Provo Bicycle Collective gave away 408 bikes in 2017 and with your help, we will give away many more in the years to come.”

Current volunteer hours for this program are Mondays from 4pm to 7pm.   Drop in anytime during those hours to join.