Also on June 6, National Trails Day, 10 concurrent dedication ceremonies were pulled off flawlessly up and down the Cal-Sag and Calumet River by the Calumet-Sag Trail Coalition [towns & agencies building the trail] and the Friends of the Calumet-Sag Trail [the residents, trail users and businesses supporting its completion]. And Rails to Trails Conservancy with The Coca-Cola Company granted $35,000 to the Friends. It was that kind of wondrous day. Pictures and Mr. Burnham caught on video are popping up at calsagtrail.org - here's the quick link: http://tinyurl.com/lluosw
15th Ward Alderman Toni Foulkes, Healthy Chicago Lawn, the 63rd St. Growth Commission, and the Active Transportation Alliance are sponsoring a bicycle ride and safety check on Saturday, June 20th, 2009, at 8:30am. The event will begin and end at Lawn Terrace, 3214 W. 63rd Place.
The ride will go through the Chicago Lawn neighborhood and will include light refreshments at the beginning and during the ride and a light lunch at the end. Mayor Daley’s Bicycling Ambassadors will offer safety tips and conduct pre-ride bike check-ups and helmet fittings. There will also be free T-shirts for the first 50 participants, and all will be entered into a raffle for free bike helmets.
For more information about this event or other active living events in Chicago Lawn, please contact Ilana Bodini, Healthy Chicago Lawn Coalition Coordinator at 773-884-4925 or firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Alderman Foulkes’ office at 773-863-0220.
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Last Saturday, May 30, approximately 100 people rode to the Hyde Park Art Center to share a meal and to witness a dialogue among some key voices in the movement for better biking. Alex Wilson, Kathy Schubert and Adolfo Hernandez participated in the Hubs and Spokes panel moderated by Zach Furness.
As an Active Trans staffer, I was particularly impressed to hear how each of these panelists lives out an activist message in his or her life. One interaction that struck a chord with me was Alex Wilson's response to Howard Zar's question about cyclists and traffic laws. Alex noted that respecting the law is not the same thing as obeying the law. He cited the Civil Rights Movement as an example of that attitude. After the presentation, I complimented Howard on his question, though he was quick to point out that he disagreed with Alex. Hearing Howard and Alex and all the voices at the Hubs and Spokes event, I am reminded that one of the beautiful things about Chicagoland’s biking community is that there is room for everyone at the table.
We’re very fortunate to have so many impassioned contributors to culture.
You won't find bike parking at your favorite Chicago events this year.
"We've had a few presenting sponsors not renew for this year, and we're working to bring in new and different ones, but so far we've done much like many city departments and are trimming here and there," Gatziolis said. "But it's never too late for someone to ride in on a white horse -- or a white bike -- to save the day and help have bike valet."
On May 21, 2009, Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA), Richard Burr (R-NC) , Bernard Sanders (I-VT), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Susan Collins (R-ME) joined together to introduce the Safe Routes to School Program Reauthorization Act (S. 1156). This is an exciting and important step forward as these five diverse Senators have agreed to champion the federal Safe Routes to School program. To get more Senators to step up as leaders on Safe Routes to School, we need your help. Your Senators need to hear from you about the importance of growing and strengthening the Safe Routes to School program in the next transportation bill.
Please take just a few minutes to contact Senators Durbin and Burris to ask them to show their support for the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program by co-sponsoring the legislation. Senator Durbin can be reached at (202) 224-2152 (or www.durbin.senate.gov/contact.cfm) and Senator Burris can be reached at (202) 224-2854 (or www.burris.senate.gov/contact.cfm).
Background on the Legislation
S. 1156 would expand funding for SRTS to $600 million per year, include high schools, simplify regulatory compliance to improve project delivery, and strengthen research and evaluation. All of these changes will make SRTS grants more widely available, and help more schools and communities across the country make it safer for children to walk and bicycle to school and get into healthier, greener habits.
For more details on the legislation, including a summary of the bill's provisions, a list of supporting organizations, and the text of the legislation, please visit http://www.saferoutespartnership.org/national.
We received this formal comment from the Chicago Department of Tranportation spokesperson, Brian Steele:
"CDOT’s Bike Program has already begun to address the impact of lost bike parking as a result of converting parking meters to pay-and-display areas. This subject is addressed in the Bike 2015 Plan, but the acceleration of the parking-conversion effort requires the City to explore new ideas.
The Bike Program is already reviewing areas where meters have been removed for possible bike rack installation, based on requests from citizens and aldermen. The best place to request a bike rack is through the Bike Program’s web site (www.chicagobikes.org/bikeparking) or by calling 311. More than 11,000 bike racks have been installed citywide to date, and that number will continue to grow.
In the short term, the City plans to leave 1-2 meter poles per block to serve as bike parking, when no bike rack is available nearby.
The City is also reviewing what’s occurred in other cities where parking meter conversions have occurred, and is exploring other equipment options that might be used to provide additional parking.
CDOT also continues to explore other funding sources for bike parking, in addition to the state and federal grant dollars we receive.
We recognize that the loss of parking meters will pose a challenge to some cyclists. We are committed to minimizing that impact, and to doing so on as an aggressive timeline as possible."
Chicago’s new on-street parking scheme has drivers reeling. But replacing parking meters with pay-and-display kiosks has a very serious impact on bike parking.
Losing 36,000 parking meters essentially means cyclists are losing 36,000 bike parking spots.
We have written to the city urging it to put some of the money generated by the lease with LAZ Parking toward bike parking.
June marks the start of the City’s budget process. It is important to let your aldermen know that you want him or her to make bike parking replacement a priority. Be sure they know that bike parking is vital to your life as a resident in their ward.
Questions? Contact Rob Sadowsky at email@example.com.