July 18, 2012

Speak up for peds, bikes, and buses at Central Issaquah Plan hearing

This Thursday at 6:30pm in the council chambers the Planning Policy Commission will hear public comment on the Central Issaquah Plan.

This is the last public opportunity to comment on the plan before the PPC sends it on to the city council where it will likely be adopted with minimal changes. This is also an opportunity to reinforce the aspects of the plan that you find most important for the PPC to keep in mind as they proceed into the process of defining the development standards which will be used to implement the plan in buildings and pavement.

If you are able, please attend the meeting and voice the issues that are important to you. The latest draft of the plan is linked from the meeting agenda.

Our friends at Forterra have provided some handy talking points if you’re not sure where to start.

Hope to see you there!

June 25, 2012

Transportation movie night: Forterra

Next up in our virtual recap of May’s transportation movie night is Forterra (formerly known as Cascade Land Conservancy). Forterra has been active in community engagement efforts around the Central Issaquah Plan and recently received a grant to continue that work in a more official capacity.

Forterra presented a series of four short films highlighting how bikes can contribute to a more livable accessible community, and some of the obstacles riders face.

How Bikes Make Cities Cool – Portland from Kona Bikes on Vimeo.

3-Way Street from ronconcocacola on Vimeo.

Copenhagen – City of Cyclists from Copenhagenize on Vimeo.

June 18, 2012

Virtual transportation movie night: Hopelink

Back at the beginning of May, the city’s Office of Sustainability did a film night entitled “Happy Mobility in a Livable City: How you Can Have It, Inform It and Use It”. There was a good turnout, but the weather was too nice to ensure a great turnout. I thought I’d do a virtual version of the show here for anyone who missed it.

The evening started out with a segment hosted by Hopelink, a local non-profit which (among many other things), provides access to public transportation for folks who wouldn’t otherwise be able to use it. Hopelink is distinguished among the evening’s presenters in that they actually produced the films they showed. They did a series of instructional videos explaining how to use public transportation in our area both in English and in several other languages. They started by showing one of the videos in Russian to highlight to our English-speaking audience the need for providing transit instructions that will be comprehensible to all potential audiences. After a short taste of that they shared the English version:

The other videos in that series are also good. “Riding the bus” explains the process for someone who hasn’t ridden public transit before. “Paying to ride the bus and light rail train” gives info about all the ways you can pay for your trip on transit.

Next up was an overview of the Hopelink transportation services:

And finally a short clip highlighting the difference these services make in the life of one user:

This is getting kind of long already so I’ll continue the evening’s entertainment and edification in another post.

September 14, 2009

PARK(ing) Day

This Friday, September 19 is PARK(ing) Day. This is the day when communities around the world take back a bit of their town that has been set aside for cars and turn it into a park.

That’s right, GAIT has partnered with our friends at artEAST to turn a parking space across Front Street from UP Front Gallery into a park for one day. The plan is to have (simulated) grass, (real) plants, (real) artists making (real) art, and a (real) bike rack.

There is more info about the event at the Issaquah PARK(ing) Day group page.

If you plan to stop by and enjoy the park, you can RSVP for the event.

If you can hang out at the park for an hour or two on Friday, keep an eye on things, and explain the concept to curious passers-by, fire me an email with your availability and I’ll coordinate. The park will be open from 5am to 9pm.

Tell your friends, and I hope to see you at the park!

July 6, 2009

July events

The Council Transportation Committee will meet this Thursday 7/9 at 5pm in the Pickering Room at City Hall Northwest. The agenda includes:

Discussion of “Transportation 2040″
I assume this is some long-range visioning.

AB 5997 SE 56th and 221st Place SE Intersection Modifications
This is the intersection just west of East Lake Sammamish Parkway by the service station/car wash and FedEx.

AB 5990 Developer Agreement with the United States Postal Service for Quitclaim of Right-of-Way
Part of the planned freeway undercrossing by the old Zetec property

AB 5978 ITS Enhancements Funding
ITS is the Intelligent Transportation System which is supposed to help smooth traffic flows around town

This Wednesday 7/8 is Bike to Market day at the Sammamish Farmers’ Market. Be sure to check in when you get there. When I went last month they gave me a nice reusable grocery bag. Almost made all those hills worthwhile ;-)  The market runs 4pm to 8pm at the Sammamish Commons right by city hall. More info on their website: http://www.sammamishfarmersmarket.org/

Later in the month, mark your calendar for these events:

7/22 7pm Sustainability Movie Night: King Corn
Not really about transportation in any way other than that when you get around by walking or biking your fuel is food and this movie is all about the industrialization of America’s food system. Plus it’s a free and fun night at the movies with other folks from Issaquah.

7/23 5:30-8pm at the Community Center, Project Porchlight is distributing FREE compact fluorescent light bulbs and they need help from people willing to go door-to-door in their neighborhoods to spread them around. Let’s do that on foot and by bike! Let me know if you want to get involved, or just show up. I’ll nag again when we get closer to the day.

June 1, 2009

Events for the first week of June

Bob reports that they had a nice Bridges ride last Wednesday. This week promises to be even nicer. Mark your calendar for every Wednesday at 6:30pm in the Community Center parking lot for this fun social ride.

Also on Wednesday, the Sammamish Farmers Market has declared the first market day of each month this summer as Bike to Market days. Their market runs from 4-8pm every Wednesday. I’m planning to huff and puff and clatter up the hill for this first one around starting time so if you want to ride along, let me know.

This week’s previously scheduled Council Transportation Committee meeting has been canceled so the next meeting of that group will now be on July 9th.

In weather like this it’s a better time than ever to walk, bike or bus to your destination. Give it a try!

May 27, 2009

Coming events

Bob Miller will be guiding his famous Bridges of Issaquah bike ride starting at 6:30pm Wednesday 5/27 from the Community Center parking lot. If you haven’t been before this ride is an easy ramble around town suitable for all skill levels. If you have been before, let Bob know and he’ll mix things up for you.

Also Wednesday night 5/27, the city’s Resource Conservation Office is hosting their second Sustainability Movie night. This time they’re showing “Who Killed the Electric Car?” which despite its car-centric focus explores issues applicable to any “alternative” transportation in this country. The movie starts at 6:30pm at the KCLS Service Center building on Newport Way behind Target (not at the library!). I’ll be there talking to folks about GAIT, so be sure to come say hi.

This Saturday is the last Saturday of the month and that means it’s time for another Trash Walk. We’re going to return to an earlier site this time, so meet at the east side of the Community Center at 9am where we’ll tidy up along the trail that heads south from there. Bring gloves and wear blackberry-resistant clothing. Hand trimmers probably wouldn’t hurt.

Looking forward, Bob Miller will reprise his Fix a Flat class at the library on Tuesday June 9 at 6:30pm. Registration (required!) opens on June 1 through the library web page.

April 15, 2009

Coming events

Normally we’d be having a meeting this Wednesday night (third Wednesday), but we’re going to skip that for this month. Instead here are a couple of other opportunities to do GAIT stuff in the next few weeks.

This Saturday 4/18 GAIT will have a table at the city’s Earth Day event in the Pickering Barn during the farmers’ market. If you want to spend some time talking to people about walk/bike/bus transportation and GAIT, I could use some company and help.

Next Saturday 4/25 GAIT will again have a table in the barn, this time for the Hobby and Volunteer Fair. I could use help at this event too, so let me know if you have some time that day.

The last Saturday is usually our trash walk day, but it’s being pre-empted by Hobby and Volunteer Fair. Instead we’ll do our next GAIT Trash Walk on Saturday 5/2. The location this time is the Sammamish Trail which is the trail that runs along the north side of SE 56th Street by the soccer fields across from PCC and Costco. I’ll send a reminder a few days before identifying our starting point.

Wednesday 4/29 at 7pm in the Eagle Room at the police station is another opportunity to find out about the new group Sustainable Issaquah. At the earlier kick-off meeting, groups formed to start a community garden, to work on home energy efficiency, to promote local businesses, as well as several other focus areas.

Monday 5/4 at 7:30pm at the City Council’s regular meeting, the city will be holding a public hearing on the draft 2010-2015 Transportation Improvement Program. This is the list of projects the city hopes to build in the next five years. You can view the draft plan and a map.

Hope to see you at some of these events!

March 3, 2009

Trash walk #2

The weather cooperated again on Saturday for six stalwart GAIT members who spent an hour and a half of their weekend pulling an unlikely number of bottles and candy wrappers and other detritus out of the little creek that runs past the community center along the trail. There was some stuff we couldn’t get to through all the brambles, but otherwise there’s a lot less garbage in the stretch from the start of the trail out past the skate park.

Here are some pictures (click for bigger versions):

Trash walkersEx-bike

February 4, 2009

First trash walk

I sent out email announcing this event only 13 hours before it was going to start so I didn’t really expect anyone else to come, but I was pleasantly surprised when Kate McWiggins joined Becky Brooks and me at 9am last Saturday to pick up trash along Front Street.

We spent about an hour and fifteen minutes and the three of us managed to clear all the unsightly leavings from the whole stretch along the east side of Front Street between Gilman Blvd and the center median of I-90 including a little ways down the eastbound onramp. This resulted in a big full bag that weighed probably 40 pounds. The folks at Stereotomy were nice enough to let me toss the bag in their dumpster for disposal.

We had a good time doing it and I’m looking forward to having more people for our next event. We’ll plan on the last Saturday of the month for these, so the next one is on February 28th. I’ll announce the location when it gets a little closer. If you have suggestions for an area that could use some attention, let me know!

Here are a few pictures: