Urban Velo

City of Pittsburgh Bicycle Pedestrian Coordinator Job Opening

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Over the past few years our hometown of Pittsburgh has become quite the cycling city, and the CIty of Pittsburgh is looking for a new Bicycle Pedestrian Coordinator to usher in the next era. We have a beautiful city with a strong and established bicycle advocacy non-profit and a progressive administration that is fully embracing bike/ped improvement as the future of urban living. This is a unique opportunity for the right person to make a mark on Pittsburgh and change the streetscape for decades to come. Check out the job requirements and get your application in by June 24th.

Jacob’s Ride Hits A Grand Slam For Hearing

jacob-in-camden-yards-alleyYYY Jacob Landis rode 10,666 miles and had hit almost every stadium in the country by the time he reached Polk County, Florida last September. With 180 miles left to reach the last one, Marlins Park in Miami, he was struck by a semi truck that kept on driving. The accident took him off the road, bringing his tour to a grinding halt. But it didn’t end his mission. This weekend, he’ll finish Jacob’s Ride, his cross-country tour to help others overcome hearing loss in the same way he has.

“Without the [cochlear] implant I couldn’t talk to you,” he tells me. Landis was 10 when he heard his brother’s voice for the first time, or anyone’s for that matter. He had just received one of the first cochlear implants. A decade later, Landis would have another life-changing experience when he visited his brother in Los Angeles.

“Noah didn’t have a car then and he gave me his road bike,” says Landis, who rode bikes as a child but, like many people, left them behind with the playthings of childhood. “He took me on one of those group rides – Taco Tuesday – I just had so much fun riding a road bike for the first time that when I got back to Annapolis even though it was so cold I went out and got my own single speed. Then I got a $500 Jamis and I started putting a lot more miles on.”

jacob-with-hearing-impaired-kids-at-Northern-VoicesAfter fifteen years with his cochlear, Landis is making the same come true for others, and he’s doing it with his bike. Last year, he raised more than $160,000 to help others who cannot afford the implant. Supporting established nonprofit organizations such as the Gift of Hearing Foundation and the Hearing Loss Association of America, the donations have helped fund implants, which can cost from $50,000 to $100,000, for five people. The first went to a 24 year-old male, same age as Landis (at the time of the procedure).

By working with Major League Baseball teams, Jacob’s Ride has been able to raise awareness and support for cochlear implants at each stadium. 500,000 Americans suffer from severe hearing loss, but only 7 percent have benefited from cochlear implants. Unlike a conventional hearing aid, which amplifies sound, a cochlear implant sends electrical impulses to the the auditory nerve, bypassing damaged parts of the inner hear. Contribute to Jacob’s Ride and learn more about cochlear implants at www.JacobsRide.com.

Project529 Craigslist and eBay Bicycle Serial Number Petition

Posted on by in Advocacy, Social with 3 Comments

image001 Project529 is a bicycle serial number registration site and has started an online petition to ask eBay and Craigslist to require serial numbers in bicycle sale listings. It’s no surprise that bicycle and parts are fenced through online classified sales, and requiring serial numbers seems a reasonable way to help curb the lowest common denominator sellers.

Every 30 seconds, a cyclist has their bike stolen in the United States. Nearly half of college students with bicycles will lose them during their education. Bicycle theft is rampant in the United States, and it’s due in part to the ease of fencing stolen bikes through online sites.

There’s a simple solution that would help dramatically cut down on these statistics: requiring a serial number when selling bikes online. Just as VIN numbers are required to list cars for sale, requiring a serial number will deter criminals from using your sites to move stolen bikes. It additionally gives the victims of theft a chance of recovering their bikes.

We the undersigned are petitioning eBay and Craigslist to add the simple requirement of including serial numbers for bicycle listings. We believe this poses no material impact to legitimate sellers or to your business. Please help keep this vibrant category on your sites ethical and above board.

Sign up at www.project529.com

Undercover Houston Bike Cops Bust Dangerous Drivers

3028416-poster-p-houston-police Houston has a thriving bicycle culture, but ranks among one of the least safe places to ride in the country according to the Alliance for Biking and Walking. Fast Company is reporting on a new program to catch dangerous drivers in the act, and bring cycling fatalities in the city to “Goal Zero.”

“We asked them to put police officers in plain clothes on bicycles with support in the area, so if someone did pass them too closely, they could call on their support to pull over that driver and issue a citation,” explains Mike Payne, executive director of BikeHouston, the organization that originally went to the mayor’s office with the idea. “They just started running special missions, if you want to call them that, where they send people out to different neighborhoods to do this. And they start writing citations and warnings.”

Payne hopes that policies like these will turn Houston into a cycling mecca. The city is flat, he points out, and has wide streets–ideal for riding bikes.

No word on the actual number of citation issued yet. Read the original article at www.fastcoexist.com

No More Bike Paths Ever!

LW0727_bikerulesOk, this is an interesting case of which the ramifications are probably no need for concern. Still..

This Salon article details the case of Marvin Brandt Revocable Trust vs. United States, in which the courts ruled in favor of the family who opposed a bike path being laid through part of their land. Here’s the amusing hypocrisy. They are descendants of the owner of a sawmill that built railroad ties, and they stated,

“They want to bring a train through here, that’s fine. We never expected and we never agreed to a bicycle trail.”

To the family, it isn’t that the government is using their abandoned land through right-of-way privileges, but that it’s a bicycle path and not a TRAIN. Umm…OK.

The larger ramifications of this case are more concerning, in the decision undermines the legality of already established bike paths obtained through right of way privileges. But yeah, good luck fighting the established benefits of Rails-To-Trails programs and tearing up all that asphalt.

Read the full article on Salon.com

Protected Bike Lanes Mean Business

PBL_report_coverFrom the Alliance for Biking & Walking:

In a new report from PeopleForBikes and the Alliance for Biking & Walking, 15 entrepreneurs and business leaders from major U.S. cities explain how protected bike lanes — on-street lanes that are physically separated from automobile traffic by curbs, planters, parked cars or posts — has meant big benefits for their companies.

The report combines this original reporting with an overview of the latest academic and technical research to find changes associated with four mega-trends.

Check it out.

Los Angeles Bicycle Commuter Festival & Summit

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The first of its kind, the Los Angeles Bicycle Commuter Festival and Summit is a coordinated effort between an array of local advocacy organization, not least of which is AIDS Lifecycle and the Bicycle Culture Institute. The day-long festival will include workshops, vendors and food throughout the day, party to follow, all at the Village at Ed Gould Plaza in Hollywood. Workshops covering everything from commuting, locking up and navigating transit to choosing the right bike, legal issues for cyclists, and more will be hosted by experienced cyclists and advocates from the L.A. Bike Coalition, L.A. Bike Trains, CicLAvia, CICLE, SoCalCross, Wolfpack Hustle and several of L.A.’s bike collectives. Tickets for the festival are $10/individual or $15/family (two plus kids), available here.

 

Amsterdam Children Fighting Car Culture in 1972

Bicycle Dutch posted a great piece on this 1972 documentary and the beginnings of Amsterdam’s transformation into the bicycle and pedestrian friendly place it is today. Nothing is perfect and there are still plenty of motor vehicles in the Netherlands, and the traffic deaths that come with them, but it’s been quite the transformation over the past 40 years. All residential streets in Amsterdam today have a speed limit of 18 mph, just as the Dutch traffic expert in this film pointed out as a potential to bring back neighborhood and save children’s lives. Check out the English-subtitled video above, read the entire article at bicycledutch.wordpress.com and get inspired to fight the good fight in your town.

Power2 Live Green – Plaza Midwood Bike Corral

Plaza Midwood is a diverse urban neighborhood on Charlotte NC’s east side. The community benefits from engaged citizens who collaborate to improve the community through arts, environment, education, entertainment, safety and public service. With a growing cyclist community, Plaza Midwood Neighborhood Association received a Power2 Live Green grant to promote alternative transportation including custom designed bike racks, Charlotte’s 1st bike repair stand and an upcycled garden-style bike corral.

“Dial S for Sharrow”: The Lady & the Shared-Use Lanes

From the Edmonton office of Transportation Planning.

City Reports