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Bike-Build-A-Thon

We’re excited to announce the upcoming Bike-Build-A-Thon on Wednesday August 23rd at Foothill Cyclery in SLO. Wondering what a Bike-Build-A-Thon is? Read on!

What’s the Bike-Build-A-Thon?

During the Bike-Build-A-Thon bicycle mechanics from Foothill Cyclery and Bike SLO County’s Bike Kitchen will assemble 30 kids’ bikes that will be Bike SLO County’s Fleet of Bikes to teach elementary school kids all over SLO County how to ride safe and smart. At 2 PM there will be remarks from representatives of Bike SLO County, Trek & Foothill Cyclery followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony to “christen” the new fleet.

Why have a fleet of bikes?

Bike SLO County is working with SLO Regional Rideshare’s Safe Routes to School program to provide inclusive classroom and on-bike safety and skills education to elementary school children throughout SLO County over a three-year pilot program. In our experience there are children who can’t afford bikes and therefore can’t participate in on-bike education opportunities. The bike fleet allows every child the chance to experience the joys of riding at an early age.

Where do the bikes come from?

To fill the need for a fleet of bicycles, Bike SLO County reached out to Trek Bicycle and local Trek dealer Foothill Cyclery, who agreed to help make the bike fleet a reality by providing 30 kids’ bikes at a steep discount. To raise the balance of the cost, Bike SLO County started a GoFundMe campaign on August 15th to cover the remainder of the cost of the bike fleet and has already raised $1,055 of their $4,650 goal. People wishing to contribute can learn more at https://www.gofundme.com/SLO-County-Bike-Fleet

What: Bike-Build-A-Thon

Where: Foothill Cyclery: 767 Foothill Blvd B, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405

When: Wednesday August 23, 2017. Noon-2 Pm with ribbon-cutting ceremony shortly after 2 PM

Questions? steve@bikeslocounty.org

Women’s Night Moves to Wednesday

Women’s Night at Bike Kitchen Makes a Move

Our weekly Women’s Night @ Bike Kitchen has moved! Previous occurring on Thursday evenings from 6 – 8:30 PM, Women’s Night now takes place on the 2nd, 3rd & 4th Wednesday of every month from 5 – 8:30 PM.

What about the 1st Wednesday? The first Wednesday of every month is now WTF (Women, Trans, Femme) Night @ Bike Kitchen, with the same hours as Women’s Night, 5 – 8:30 PM.

Why Women’s Night and WTF Night?

Bicycle maintenance has traditionally been an overwhelmingly male-dominated area. It is our goal to help teach individuals who have been intimidated or marginalized in this setting to be knowledgeable and confident working on their bikes.

On a daily basis, Bike SLO County strives to ensure a safe and comfortable environment for all, while also recognizing the benefits of offering women, trans & femme-specific evening hours as a stepping stone to achieving greater confidence working in our space at any time.

Women’s Night and WTF Night are for:

Women: A person who identifies as a woman.

Trans: Transgender, genderqueer, gender non-conforming, gender creative, anyone whose gender identity is fluid, transgressive, and/or transitioning.

Femme: A gender identity in which a person of any gender embodies a feminine appearance, expression, or identity.

If you are not WTF identified, please BECOME AN ALLY:

  • Respect the space: Come during our regular hours, don’t ask for an exception, and don’t hang around the entrance during Women’s Night or WTF hours.
  • Respect People: During Bike Kitchen’s regular hours, treat all female & trans mechanics and patrons as you would any other person (don’t assume they’re less knowledgeable, don’t call them “sweetie,” and NEVER take a wrench out of their hand!)
  • Get Educated: Learn about the issues facing women and trans communities.
  • Educate others: About why and how to be an ally!

(Big thanks to DIY bike cooperative, BICAS in Tuscon, AR and Sacramento Bike Kitchen in Sacramento, CA from whom much of our Women’s Night/WTF Night language was cribbed.)

 

Advocacy Alert

San Luis Obispo Advocacy Alert

Stand up for the Broad St. Bike Boulevard and Safe Routes to School

The San Luis Obispo City Council will be meeting on Tuesday, August 15 to discuss three proposed concept plans for making the Broad/Chorro/Lincoln Street corridor safer for bicyclists. This project ties into the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) connections that will make our children safer. Your help is needed to help make sure that the streets of our community are safe for people who ride bikes, people who walk and people who drive cars – everyone.

How can you support Safe Routes to School and the Broad St. Bike Boulevard project?

1. Write a letter of support (see template below for a sample – please add your own personalization).
2. Attend the city council meeting (Tuesday, August 15. Items 15 and 17 on the agenda) — your simple attendance at the meeting and indication of your support will send a needed message to the City Council.
There are some residents of the neighborhood that want no change. The City Council is listening – let’s make sure we voice our support for safe riding for cyclists of all ages.
Sample  Letter Template (you can email it to the Mayor and City Council Members by clicking this email address:  emailcouncil@slocity.org )
Dear Mayor Harmon and City Council Members

On August 15, you will be asked to consider plans for a Broad Street Bike Blvd and other Safe Routes to Schools Plan improvements proposed for the Bishops Peak/Pacheco Elementary School area of town.  These plans are important to the long term residents and homeowners of the immediate area surrounding the two schools, Broad and Chorro Streets, as well as to people throughout SLO seeking to access the Foothill area from downtown and beyond. The Broad Street area and the SRTS Plan (which includes safe crossing options for Foothill Blvd. at Ferrini) should accommodate cyclists and pedestrians safely.

Through your leadership, this area can become safer for residents, cyclists, and pedestrians and help meet many City goals, including Vision Zero and those in the Climate Action Plan.  The planning has continued long enough and staff have done a great job of creating a thoughtful and participatory process. Now is the time to act on their work. If the City is serious about increasing multi-modal transportation and reducing car trips by 20%, we must connect downtown and the Foothill area with more pedestrian and bicycle-friendly routes.

Thank you

(Your Name)
(City of Residence)

SLO City Council Meeting
Tuesday August 15th Meeting begins at 6 PM
City Council Chamber, City Hall, 990 Palm Street, SLO (map)

Bike Month 2017: Week 3

Bike Month 2017 continues with a fun filled week, including Bike to Work Day, the Bike Month Blow Out, a special guest at Women’s Night @ Bike Kitchen, the AMGEN Tour of California and the Downtown SLO Bock Party.

Tuesday May 16th: AMGEN Tour of California, Downtown SLO Block Party

Our Bike Valet will be at the start of the AMGEN race in Pismo Beach and in San Luis Obispo for the Downtown SLO Block Party. We’ll be in Pismo Beach from 9 AM – 12:30 PM near the intersection of Cypress & Pomeroy, then we’ll run Bike Valet from 2 – 6 PM in front of Sanctuary Tobacco on Chorro St in SLO (map). Ride your bike to the Downtown SLO Block Party and leave it with us! More info on the block party: https://www.facebook.com/events/1208757802567645/

Thursday May 18th: Women’s Night @ Bike Kitchen presents: An Evening with Karen Aydelott

Join Coeur Sports Ambassador Karen Aydelott for a special evening in the Bike Kitchen. Karen, a San Luis Obispo resident, is an avid cyclist having completed 60 double centuries and the Paris-Brest-Paris event. In addition she is an experienced triathlete and has completed 31 Ironman distance races; 5 since her amputation on 2008.  More info here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1901656286790237/

Friday May 19th: Bike to Work Day, followed by the Bike Month Blow Out/Bikes & Beauty Fashion Show

Bike to Work Day starts early with Commuter Stations galore and ends with the Bike Month Blow Out/Bikes & Beauty Fashion Show at the Guild Hall in SLO. Visit any of the Commuter Stations around the county to get your raffle ticket, then bring your ticket to the Bike Month Blow Out for your chance to win a 7-speed Linus Commuter bike.  Tickets for other bike raffles and giveaways will be available for purchase at the Bike Month Blow Out.

Find Commuter Stations here: https://rideshare.org/events/bike-to-work-day/

More info on the Bike Month Blow Out/Bikes & Beauty Fashion Show here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1185750391548494/

Saturday May 20th: Street Skills 101 

Bike Month is a fantastic time to brush up on your street skills. Our fun, informative course gives you in-class and on-the-road experience to make sure you know how to bike safe and bike smart. Noon – 4 PM on Saturday May 20th in SLO. Reserve your place here: https://bikeslocounty.org/events/#!event/2017/5/20/street-skills-101

Get the full Bike Month calendar of events over at Rideshare: https://rideshare.org/bike-month-events/

Come to the High Street Block Party!

Kids! Adults! Inbetweens! Don’t miss the High Street Block Party, May 12, 13 & 14, part of the Better Block project.

Scroll down for details!

High Street Block Party

Advocacy Alert

Advocacy Alert: Bob Jones Trail Extension

Stand up for the Bob Jones Trail

Write your Supervisors & show up!

On Tuesday, May 9th the Board of Supervisors will meet to decide whether to move the Bob Jones Trail Extension project forward, or not.  At least four Supervisors need to vote in favor for the project to move ahead. Bob Jones TrailWhile the San Luis Obispo County Parks & Rec Department has found most of the funds needed to move the Bob Jones Trail forward, it is up to the county Board of Supervisors to approve the use of the money. 

If the Supervisors approve the funding, it will put SLO County in a strong position for additional funds and we could see actual construction of the Bob Jones Trail extension in the next 18 to 24 months.

Please help to move this project forward by doing the following three things:

  • Email or call your Supervisor expressing your support for the additional funding needed to move the Bob Jones Trail project forward. 
  • Show up at 9 am for the May 9th hearing to express your support for this project. We will need a large turnout for the Board of Supervisors so that the minimum four votes are obtained. The Bob Jones Trail item is currently on the consent agenda. If it stays on the consent agenda, there will be no public commentary. This is a great opportunity for signs reading “Support the Bob Jones Trail” “I <3 the Bob Jones Trail” etc. If the item is taken off of the consent agenda for discussion, public comment is encouraged. As always, be polite and respectful. 
  • Forward this request to your friends and family, especially in Arroyo Grande, Nipomo and North County.

Key points to express are:

  • Support the remaining BJT funding necessary to issue the RFP, allowing the project to move forward and become shovel-ready. 
  • SLO County will be applying for a portion of the 200+ million dollars available through ATP grants in early 2018. Having the project shovel-ready will enhance our chances of receiving $10 million in state funds for construction of the BJT extension. 
  • We have already lost significant grant money for this project due to delays, and are at risking of losing an additional $250,000 grant if progress is not made soon. 
  • Funding for this RFP will not impact the County’s progress on the Nipomo Parks projects that are in the works.  

Below is the contact information for the Board of Supervisors.

District 1: John Peschong, jpeschong@co.slo.ca.us
District 2: Bruce Gibson, bgibson@co.slo.ca.us
District 3: Adam Hill, ahill@co.slo.ca.us
District 4: Lynn Compton, lcompton@co.slo.ca.us
District 5: Debbie Arnolddarnold@co.slo.ca.us

Advocacy Alert

SLO City Alert! ACT TODAY!

Tell SLO City Council

Keep bike projects moving forward

Tonight SLO City Council will be reviewing staff budget recommendations that put the brakes on bike projects which were deemed high priorities in the budget priority process two years ago. It is important to reach out to City Council before 11 a.m. TODAY, or to attend the second part of the SLO City Council meeting this evening starting at 8 p.m. to comment directly to City Council to make sure that these projects don’t stall.

Whether you are sending email or commenting in person, please always remember to be respectful and to thank the City Council for the previous work to connect and expand the city’s bicycle transportation network.

Talking points:

  • I am part of the 20 percent dedicated to helping the city meet its 20 percent trips-by-bike goal.
  • In the last budget cycle, the City Council funded feasibility studies for three projects: 1) Safe Routes to School for Pacheco and Bishop’s Peak Elementary Schools, 2) a bicycle/pedestrian crossing on Foothill Boulevard at Ferrini Road and 3) the Broad Street Bicycle Boulevard. Please follow through and allocate funding for improvements recommended in the studies. Finish what has been started to provide a more safe and convenient connection for people living on the north side of the city to downtown.
  • Please delay the Penny Lane bridge over the Union Pacific RR tracks project and allocate the funding to the Safe Routes to Schools, Foothill/Ferrini crossing and Broad Street Bicycle Boulevard projects. This project is a temporary fix and the funds are better spent on shovel ready projects.
  • Thank you for securing the grant for the Railroad Safety Trail segment from Taft Street to Pepper Street, including the bridge over the railroad tracks behind California Highway Patrol headquarters. Support staff’s recommendation for a feasibility study for the next segment from Pepper Street to the Amtrak station. Complete the Railroad Safety Trail to provide a complete network for people on bikes and pedestrians between Cal Poly and downtown and eventually Orcutt Road.
  • Support staff’s recommendation to place a higher priority on the Bob Jones Trail segment between Oceanaire and Calle Joaquin over the segment from LOVR to the Octagon Barn because of limited funds. But please insist that the next budget cycle must fund the segment from Los Osos Valley Road to the Octagon Barn in anticipation of the opening of the Octagon Barn for public use, pending approval of the Avila Ranch and San Luis Ranch developments and extension of the county’s segment of the trail from the Octagon Barn to the Ontario Road staging area.
  • Please fund a feasibility study of a Highway 101 at Marsh Street Crossing to determine the best fix to the gap in the bicycle transportation network between downtown San Luis Obispo and the Laguna Lake area. Without this vital connection in the City’s bicycle transportation network, more people will choose to travel between downtown and the Laguna Lake area by personal motor vehicle for safety reasons even though the distance is easily covered by bicycle or on foot. The existing crossing to the Madonna bike path is so perilous that experienced bicyclists avoid it, and Laguna Middle School students rarely consider it as a viable option for safe travel to school. The proposed San Luis Ranch development is only responsible for its fair share of transportation improvements, and fixing this gap is not included.
  • Support continuation of $100,000 annually for miscellaneous bike projects and $60,000 annually for maintenance of bike/pedestrian facilities.

If you cannot attend the hearing, please e-mail the Mayor and City Council at: emailcouncil@slocity.org, preferably before 11 a.m. today. Address your e-mails to Mayor Harmon and City Council Members Christianson, Gomez, Pease and Rivoire.

Or you can send e-mails to each member individually:

Mayor Heidi Harmon: hharmon@slocity.org
Carlyn Christianson: cchristianson@slocity.org
Aaron Gomez: agomez@slocity.org
Andy Pease: apease@slocity.org
Dan Rivoire: drivoire@slocity.org

Remember, public comments on SLO City staff’s recommendations on the 2017-19 budget cycle will not be accepted until approximately 8 p.m. or later. The 4 p.m. session is for the staff presentation only. If you really want to attend and comment in person, a good strategy is to watch the meeting live from home on Charter Cable Government Access Channel 20 or streamed online via the City Council website at: http://www.slocity.org/government/mayor-and-city-council/agendas-and-minutes. Time your appearance on when the discussion on a petition to repeal or replace the rental housing inspection program is coming to a close.

Thank You!

Advocacy Alert

Let The Supervisors Know You Support The Bob Jones Trail

The next phase of the Bob Jones Trail, the section between South Higuera and Ontario Road, is ready to proceed. Unfortunately the project is stalled and in order to continue making progress the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors need to hear that people want this project completed. Please read on and then email TODAY or attend and speak at the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday March 7th.

Why Does this Matter?

Though a Request for Proposal (RFP) for this portion of the Bob Jones Trail has been completed and approved by Caltrans, the County has not put it out for bids. Once put out for bids and contracted, the RFP would complete the Plans, Specs and Engineering (PSE) and Right of Way (ROW) necessary for the South Higuera to Ontario Road section of the trail to become “shovel ready”.

Why does this matter?

  • Delaying the project causes the price of the project to go up. Construction prices will continue to rise. The longer we wait, the higher the price tag.
  • A long delay may necessitate that a supplemental EIR be prepared, adding additional time and money to the completion of the Bob Jones Trail.
  • Completion of PSE and ROW will make this section of the trail “shovel ready” and thus eligible for additional grant funding that it can’t qualify for in its present state. Those grants save SLO County money that can be used on other needs.
  • Families, children and individuals from all over SLO County currently use the Bob Jones Trail. Let’s complete the entire project to improve the safety, physical fitness and quality of life for residents and visitors throughout SLO County.

What can I do about it?

EMAIL: Contact the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors by email at boardofsups@co.slo.ca.us and ask them to place an item on the agenda in the very near future to put the Request For Proposal (RFP) for Plans, Specs and Engineering (PSE) and Right of Way (ROW) for the South Higuera to Ontario Road section of the Bob Jones Trail out to bid. Remember to be respectful and to clearly state what you are writing about.

Feel free to amend, copy and paste the text included below:

Esteemed Supervisors,

I’m writing today to comment on Item 13, “Status update on the Public Facilities Financing Plan for Unincorporated Area Facilities”. I respectfully urge the Supervisors to support the completion of the Bob Jones Trail by placing an item on the agenda in the very near future to put the Request For Proposal (RFP) for Plans, Specs and Engineering (PSE) and Right of Way (ROW) for the South Higuera to Ontario Road section of the trail out to bid. Not only has the RFP been completed and approved by Caltrans, grant money will pay for roughly 75% of the cost. With $750,000 of grant money available, the County will pay $280,000 or less to award this contract. Completion of PSE and ROW will make this section of the trail “shovel ready” and thus eligible for additional grant funding that it can’t qualify for in its present state.

Delay in putting this contract out for bid may have serious repercussions. Construction costs will of course rise over time. The longer the delay, the higher the cost. In light of the time and money already been spent, moving forward now will help keep costs down on a project already in progress. Additionally, a long delay may necessitate that a supplemental EIR be prepared, adding additional costs, additional delays and once again raising the price to complete the Bob Jones Trail.

Portions of the Bob Jones Trail now in use serve the recreational and fitness needs of pedestrians and bicycle riders countywide. Families, children and individuals flock to the safety and beauty offered by the trail. Tourists and tourist dollars from outside SLO County are drawn year-round to the already completed section of the trail linking Ontario Road with Avila Beach.

I support the Supervisors efforts to improve the safety, physical fitness and quality of life for residents and visitors throughout SLO County. Completing the Bob Jones Trail accomplishes all three.  Please add this item to the Supervisors agenda as soon as possible.

Thank you,

(Your Name, Your Address)

Attend the Board of Supervisors Meeting:

When: March 7th, 2017. The meeting begins at 9. It is uncertain when Item 13 will be discussed, but to be on the safe side try and be there no later than 9:30 a.m. Please note that Item 13 is listed as “Status update on the Public Facilities Financing Plan for Unincorporated Area Facilities”, not as Bob Jones Trail. On this item Supervisors will be discussing Parks funding in general and while they will not be able to make a decision directly on the Bob Jones RFP, this is the best time to address the Supervisors and ask that they keep the Bob Jones Trail alive and moving forward.

Where: Government Center Board Chambers located at 1055 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401.

How: Submit a BOARD APPEARANCE REQUEST FORM prior to the Item being presented on the agenda. These are available at Board of Supervisors meeting.