Posts

Advocacy Alert

Help Secure Cap and Trade Funding for Safe Routes to School and Bike/Ped

SRTS_NationalThe California Air Resources Board will be holding public hearings for input on the investment of cap-and-trade auction proceeds to support the State’s effort to reduce the greenhouse gases (GHG) that contribute to climate change.  Active transportation offers unique advantages to reduce GHG emissions and improve public health, reduce congestion, and improve public safety.

Increasing investments in Safe Routes to School programs, bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure and first-last mile connections to public transit will support the goals of AB 32 and SB 375.  We encourage the administration to set aside a significant portion of the cap and trade revenues for these purposes.

hawthorne18

Increased levels of bicycling and walking must play a part in reducing GHG emissions if
California wants to meet the targets set by AB 32.

A shift of automobile trips to bicycling or walking trips has a direct, positive impact in that trip emissions are reduced by 100 percent.  Approximately 60% of trips in California are under one mile, and are currently taken by automobile. These trips can easily be accomplished by walking or bicycling, drastically reducing GHG emissions.

VMT_info

Join us in providing comments to the administration on this important topic.  The Safe Routes to School National Partnership has developed the following talking points and nexus document for your information. (They are jam packed with information! Check them out).

We encourage you to submit a written comment here by March 8th to show your support for these funds to be used to help fund our bike/ped infrastructure and programs!

Caltrans Releases Highway One Resurfacing Statement

Now that local, statewide and national groups have brought the recent resurfacing of Highway 1 to the attention of Caltrans officials, an official statement has been released regarding the Highway 1 chip seal project.

Caltrans officials are partnering with UC pavement researchers to find effective and affordable ways to make cycling a smoother experience along a recently paved section of Highway 1 in northern San Luis Obispo County. The Caltrans Division of Research and Innovation plans to tap the expertise of the University of California, Davis Pavement Research Center in response to local bicycle enthusiasts who say the chip seal project has made sections of the scenic route a rougher-than-usual ride.

“We’re looking for innovative solutions and are hopeful that this investigation will lead to both short and long-term improvements,” said Caltrans District 5 Director Tim Gubbins. “Caltrans plans to work closely with the local cycling community and UC experts as wesort this out.”

The news comes after an online petition circled by a group within the SLO Bike Club gained over 1,100 signatures in just a couple of weeks.

The UC Davis researchers are currently developing a scope of work to examine conditions on Highway 1 and offer recommendations about various cost-effective surface treatments and how they would service cyclists as well as all users of the highway. Over the next several months, researchers will consider any positive changes that can be made to the existing pavement surface. The investigation will also include any potential long-term improvements to our chip seal program statewide.

In the meantime, Caltrans will maintain its enhanced sweeping of Highway 1 and repairing potholes.

More information is also available online:

The Bicycle Coalition has met with local bicycle riders, bicycle travelers and attended local meetings regarding the issue. This is the first step towards restoring a bicycle friendly Highway One, we will be sure to keep you updated as the process continues.

Advocacy Alert

*UPDATE* Call for a Bicycle Friendly Highway One

As a follow up to our post earlier this week regarding a recent resurfacing of Highway 1, this issue has gained attention on the local, state and national level from a few of our partners.

From the SLO Tribune, photo by Lyman Evans.

From the SLO Tribune, photo by Lyman Evans.

Local – On Wednesday, January 9th, at the monthly SLOCOG Board Meeting, over 60 people showed up to show support for a fix of this new road surface. Multiple local news stories have covered the issue, and the conversation is growing.

State – Our friends at the California Bicycle Coalition in Sacramento are aware of the issue, and we are working closely with them as well.

National – Adventure Cycling Association, a national group representing over 45,000 members, wrote an insightful blog post on the issue. They cite this Pacific Coast route as it’s most popular bicycle tourism route.

You – Add your voice to the nearly 600 people who have already signed the online petition, and we will be sure to keep you updated as the process unfolds.

Potholes, some several inches deep, are seen outlined in the bike lane after having been camouflaged by the repaving. SLO Tribune. Photo by Joe Johnston

Potholes, some several inches deep, are seen outlined in the bike lane after having been camouflaged by the repaving. From the SLO Tribune. Photo by Joe Johnston

Grover Beach – W Grand Ave Improvements Underway

Construction signs are up, and the City of Grover Beach will be starting very soon with phase 2 of the West Grand Avenue Enhancement Project.

This project will be a major improvement for street and pedestrian conditions on West Grand Avenue between 8th and 11th Streets. Components of the project include sidewalk and street repairs, accessible pedestrian corner ramps, new striping, landscaped center medians, lighting, and more. The goals of the project are to enhance and clearly define the City’s downtown core.

Screen shot 2013-01-07 at 1.25.11 PM

Construction is set to last about three months to complete (weather permitting). For further details and contact information, you can view the City’s announcement here.

Advocacy Alert

Call for a Bicycle Friendly Highway One

Join the incredibly strong voice of people in the Central Coast that want to see Highway 1 safe for bikes and sign this petition to express your concern to CalTrans. Petition here.

The Facts: 

  1. CalTrans resurfaced (thin layer of chip seal) a segment of Highway 1 North of Cambria in late 2012.
  2. The rock aggregate used in the resurfacing is rough and makes riding a bike challenging (see images).
  3. One person has already crashed as a result of the new road surface.
  4. CalTrans has stated that the roadway will become smooth over time and stands behind the resurfacing work for economic rationale.

The San Luis Obispo County Bicycle Coalition strongly supports the voice of hoteliers, restauranteurs, business owners, community members, nonprofits, and people who ride bikes that are asking CalTrans to provide a solution to this problem. Safe conditions for cycling on Highway 1 are essential to our economic vitality and community wellbeing through opportunities for recreational tourism, active local residents, and nonprofit fundraising endeavors. Together we can make Highway 1 great.

A few images of the new road surface: 

Zoomed way out (old surface top vs new surface bottom)

Zoomed way out (old surface top vs new surface bottom)

Zoomed closer (old surface top vs new surface bottom)

Zoomed closer (old surface top vs new surface bottom)

Super zoom (new surface only)

Super zoom (new surface only)

Sign the online petition to restore bicycle riding on Highway One in Northern SLO County here.

Advocacy Alert

Pismo Beach Complete Streets Plan Approved!

Screen shot 2012-12-12 at 10.55.54 AM

Yesterday evening the Pismo Beach Planning Commission enthusiastically approved the Pismo Beach Complete Streets Plan featuring incredible bike paths, sidewalk improvements, roundabouts, and trees. We were very excited to hear such great support from the community and commissioners and thank everyone who has been involved throughout the process.

It is tentatively schedule to go to the Pismo Beach City Council for review and comment on February 19, 2013. We will keep you posted.

Take a look at the plan here.

Advocacy Alert

Support Bicycle Safety, Support SB 1464

Next week, Senate Bill 1464 will be voted on in the California Senate. This bill amends the California Vehicle Code on “overtaking” (passing from behind), specifically as it relates to motorists passing bicyclists, by requiring a minimum distance of 3 feet when a motorist passes a bicyclist from behind.

You may remember a similar bill being introduced last year, ultimately vetoed, and misunderstood by Gov. Brown. This version of the bill addresses his concerns and we are confident SB 1464 will gain his support. See a comparison of the two bills here.

The Senate Transportation & Housing Committee voted 8-0 to approve SB 1464 on April 17th. The full Senate will vote on the bill on Thursday, May 24th. The SLO County Bicycle Coalition, along with other advocacy groups across the state, urge you to show your support for such a law which promotes bicycle safety.

SUPPORT SB 1464:

  •  Authored by Sen. Alan Lowenthal of Long Beach.
  • Co-sponsored the California Bicycle Coalition, the City of Los Angeles, and Bike Coalitions around the state.

THE LAWS:

  • Require a minimum distance of 3 feet when a motorist passes a bicyclist from behind in the same lane.
  • Legalize the current practice of crossing the double yellow centerline, when clear, in order to pass a bicyclist.
  • Set a $220 base fine for a violation that injures a bicyclist (equal to the lowest fine for reckless driving with great bodily injury). For non-injury violations the base fine is $35 (equal to the fine for unsafe passing).

THE REASON:

  • Safety is the #1 barrier to riding a bicycle. Clarifying and enforcing the rules for safe passing can help encourage more people to choose bicycles for transportation.
  • Passing-from-behind collisions are the leading cause of bicyclist fatalities in California.
  • If we show our support, and the Governor signs the bill, California will join 21 other states who have passed similar bills.

Check out this video of a rider in close call. SB 1464 would make motorist behavior like this illegal, and further protect the safety of bicycles who are legally using the roadway.

Click the photo above, click the link here, or call (805) 549-3784 to contact Senator Sam Blakeslee and ask him to support SB 1464 and increase the safety of bicycle riders in California. Simply fill out the form to show your support. Below is text you can use in your request to the Senator:

Dear Senator Blakeslee,

I’m a constituent from the 15th District and I’m writing to ask you to vote yes on Senate Bill 1464 (Lowenthal), which will be heard by the Senate in coming days.

Cyclists too often face dangerous conditions on California’s streets due to motorists passing too closely. This type of collision is the leading cause of adult bicyclist fatalities in California and the U.S.

Requiring motorists to give bicyclists at least 3 feet of space when passing, we can minimize a leading cause of deadly collisions and help more people feel comfortable about choosing to ride their bikes.

A specified passing distance provides a more objective and easily understood measure of what constitutes “safe” and gives law enforcement and the courts a more objective basis for enforcing California’s safe passing requirement. Most importantly, it helps emphasize a motorist’s special responsibility to safeguard more vulnerable road users like bicyclists.

Once again, I would like to ask that you vote yes on Senate Bill 1464. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Next week’s conversation is amongst Senators only – they won’t hear any outside testimony from organizations like the CA Bicycle Coalition. But Senators listen to their constituents. That’s why it’s so important for you to contact your Senator today!

The Capitol Building

Look closely, those are two people riding some Capital Bikeshare bikes here on the Hill.

20120322-210000.jpg

We were finally able to get outside for the first time today and see the cherry blossoms in full bloom, making for a beautiful day in DC. We can’t wait to get out to the national mall and see more of them from the Bikeshare bikes ourselves!

20120322-210114.jpg