Monday, December 26, 2005

Monday Musette

This is called an 'ask' in fundraising. It's from a very vocal paint-and-pave group associated with a large, national alliance. They have an all-bike-lanes-all-the-time approach that deems it absolutely necessary to have a bike lane on each and every street. Complete The Streets is shorthand for the program, as is the Safe Routes to School, which has been hijacked for the same purpose. In the original SRTS information, it was emphasized that the community should decide which programs were necessary and desireable. However, the PnP crowd turns this on its head, substituting their own agenda.

As you read through it, ask yourself two questions: first, why does this group need money, and second, why is there no mention of bicycling education?

P***** Needs Your Support!

And, because of a matching pledge from a long-time supporter, your donation is worth double!

As a supporter of P***** you know that the work that we're doing is important to both you and our community. We want to take a few moments and remind you of some of our important accomplishments this past year and ask that you support us with an end-of-year tax-deductible gift of your financial support. Your contribution will help us to build on our current efforts in to 2006, and is our most important source of income.

Here is a short list of some of P*****'s more important accomplishments this past year:

- Secured new Safe Routes to Schools funding for P*****.
- Fought for bicycle and pedestrian access on C***** Road and Sixth Street and will continue to do so.
- Educated officials on the many ways we can complete our streets for all users.Worked with Territorial Transit to develop the first regional public transit system including bicycle and pedestrian access to bus stops and bikes on the busses.
- Worked with city officials on strategies for extending the P***** Trail and completing the P***** Trail into C***** Valley.

Many employers also offer a matching gift program; check to see if your employer will match your gift. This is a great way to stretch your contribution to us even farther!


This next bit is a newspaper article. I've included the whole thing, partly because it's short, and partly because most news articles don't sit around on the server for long. I like the humor of it, taking shots at complaining motorists and clueless cyclists. Still, there's this egregious bit: "The bike lanes are wide enough for a rider to travel almost outside the door zone..." Almost? Why do some cyclists think that any facility, regardless of its merits, is better than no facility? Door zone bike lanes are an invitation to disaster, yet too many cyclists cannot see that. Worse, city planners, engineers, and attorneys who really should know better, install substandard, poorly-designed, poorly maintained 'facilities' as a sop to area cyclists. Well, that and they get some federal grants. Money is fungible, after all. Did you really think the military spends $800 for a hammer?

On the other hand, you really have to admire a reporter who uses 'flahute' in an article!

Bike Notes: A bicycle Christmas wish
By Rick Riley

Here's hoping that Santa Claus or some such other gift-giving entity brings you a new bike this year.

We received a fine gift from the City of Fort Bragg in the form of the newly striped bike lanes on Franklin Street. These could serve as the appropriate model for additional mixed use street markings as the city moves forward in its paving projects. There is ample room for on-street parking, bike lanes wide enough to be practical, and motor vehicle travel lanes which leave no question as to where a vehicle should be safely driven.

I heard one complaint that the motor vehicle lanes might be too narrow. I've driven them several times and have found them to be just right. The trick is to place your left hand at 10 o'clock on the wheel and your right hand at 2 o'clock while focusing your eyes straight ahead. It's called steering.

When riding a bicycle in the bike lanes it's quite appropriate to travel in the direction of the arrows painted on the street. If you don't travel in the right direction it is likely that you don't read either so we'll just leave your situation to the justice of physical laws and the Fort Bragg Police Department. I just hope you don't get hurt.

The bike lanes are wide enough for a rider to travel almost outside the door zone the area where a parked car's door swings open. You just stay a bit to the left in the bike lane and watch for movement inside cars. Getting doored or nearly doored is not fun.

Hope to see you out there Christmas morning on your new bike. Get soggy and they'll adore you in Belgium. The weather's been great for the flahute with plenty of wind and rain. There's mud too, but you have to go looking for it.



Blogger Fritz said...

We piloted a Safe Routes program in my city this last fall and I'm pretty proud of what our local LCIs did with it. It was completely promotion and education. We're applying right now for state funds, asking only for money for education. The city may also ask for some facilities money, but that will be for useful things like a couple of mid-block grade-seperated crossings across busy streets that the city has been wanting for a while now.

I don't see anything wrong with Complete Streets from a pedestrian standpoint, which is the angle our city is looking at. Making our streets more walkable is a good goal.

9:43 PM  

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