Safety videos for bus drivers

CTA and the Chicago Department of Transportation have produced bike safety videos for bus drivers. Check it out online at


Pothole Problems?

Now that spring has sprung the city of Chicago will likely start filling potholes soon. Just a reminder that you should report any major potholes that you encounter while cycling by dialing 311.

They will ask you for the exact address, the size and shape of the pothole, and whether it is in a "travel lane" (say yes).


Oak Forest about to get its street OPENED.

MAN, is my Irish up! Just in time too - OPEN STREETS OAK FOREST tomorrow (get the flyer), 9 am - 10:30 am, kicking off the Oak Forest Fleadh festival. Active Trans tent will be up at Waverly & Cicero, just north of the train viaduct - a bunch of area clubs will be with us to do sign ups for their rides and new members. THE DEAL: sign up on the spot as a new member of ActiveTrans OR for any of the clubs or their rides, and I'll give you a ride on Cicero on my FreeLoader. (If you're over 200 lbs, you're riding me or someone else smaller than 200 lbs.) YOU WILL NEVER AGAIN GET TO FEEL THAT COOL. Contact me with questions or to practice your Irish brogue.

Velo surfing!

Infographic: Road Traffic Crashes

Take a look at this interesting infographic and article from Next Generation Healthcare that details road crash statistics worldwide. (The color coding does not relate to the infographic as a whole but only to the fact sets).

DePaul students develop bike business concepts

DePaul University is hosting a competition for new business ventures. One student has concepted a bike-related business that promotes a healthier and "greener" lifestyle and they are seeking feedback from bicyclists about it's feasibilty. If you are into bikes and interested in helping out, there is a brief survey you can take.

Google adds biking!

Google added a biking option today to its directions! Check out this route

The Tribune wrote a great piece on it, too.


Take your place at the line

This weekend's springlike weather drew nearly 60 sun-craving cyclists to the xXx Racing - AthletiCo Saturday ride.  It's an incredible number for early March, especially considering much of the team's core is at training camp in San Luis Obispo until next weekend.

Just a share under half were new or non-team members, and a sizable percentage of them had never been on the ride before, let alone raced a bike.  Nerves, shyness, and self-doubt were overcome by curiousity, competitiveness and a sense of adventure; the result was a rewarding experience that's hopefully ignited a fire that should last until the conclusion of the Chicago Cross Cup at Montrose Harbor in early December.

Getting past the nerves and reservations is the biggest step towards fulfulling your dream of finally racing a bike.  Once that registration is completed online or mailed, the goal you've set for yourself is almost self-fulfilling. Now is the time to get out on your bike and ride hard in the warming temperatures, honing your skills in one of the dozens of group rides in the Chicago area.  To rest and recover and replace all those calories you're burning.  To meet new friends and cycling ethusiats.  And, of course, to pick your first race.

Below are several excellent choices for someone new to bike racing to take that first step.  These races are local, with beginner-friendly courses - such as wide turns and smooth pavement - and may have beginners-only fields.  Online registration is or will be available for all of these races.  Category 5 (beginner) fields tend to close faster than most as competitive-cycling's popularity grows.  Don't let that discourage you - there is almost always day-of registration and very rarely does the entire pre-reg'd field show to a race.

  • Gapers Block Crits (March 22-26) – Low key, low tech, low cost racing. Ride to the races each day of the week at Calumet Park on the far South Side.
  • Vernon Hills Grand Prix (May 2, a link will be added registration opens) – A nearby criterium on a four-corner course with smooth pavement.
  • Monsters of the Midway (May 15) – A fun local race on the University of Chicago campus at the Midway Pleasance, a simple four-turn rectangular course amid a beautiful academic setting.
  • Fox River Grove Cycling Challenge (May 16) – The word “challenge” does not do justice the hill that greets the racers immediately after the first turn.
  • Sherman Park Criterium (June 12) – Held in the South Side oasis designed by the Olmsted Brothers of Central Park fame, this 1-mile lap was designed for bicycle racing, feature wide, sloping turns.
  • Glencoe Grand Prix Criterium (August 14) – The newly announced site of the U.S. National Criterium Championships, this challenging course is within riding distance for both spectators and racers alike, just off of famed Sheridan Road along Chicagoland’s North Shore.

New to racing?

Be sure to take advantage of the many online resources at your disposal:

  • Chicago bike racing – Features up-to-date race calendar with links to registration, plus race and local coverage, includes plenty of tips for new riders.
  • USA Cycling – Information on licensing requirements and purchase, as well as rules and regulations.
  • Illinois Cycling Association – The state governing body for racing in Illinois.
  • Be sure to check back here, at the Active Trans Racing Blog, for events, racer profiles, and racing basics. Also be sure to check out training tips at the Coach's Corner, by Randy Warren of xXx Racing.

Take your place at the line this year and open up a whole new world in cycling.  Good luck and go fast! 

$5 discount extended until March 9!

We annonuced today that MB Financial Bank will be the title sponsor of Bike the Drive. To celebrate, we have decided to extend the $5 discount to March 9. Sign up today!

Criminal trial of driver who killed local cyclist is Thursday, March 4, 2010

The information for the criminal trial of the driver that struck and killed Mandy Annis is as follows:

Thursday, March 4, 2010*
Daly Center, 50 W. Washington, Room 405, Chicago IL
*There is a chance it will extend into March 5, 2010

This trial is open to the public and high attendance is expected.

Active Transportation Alliance will be present at the trial to support the friends and family of Mandy Annis.

Signatures needed for 18th and Halsted improvements

Active Transportation Alliance Help make 18th and Halsted safer for pedestrians. Add your signautre to this petition so Ald. Solis, Chicago Dept. of Trans. (CDOT) and Office of Emergency
Management and Communications (OEMC) press forward on improving the intersection.

Add your signature here.

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