June 22, 2009

Links for 6/22

Offered without commentary for now, but here are some interesting things I’ve stumbled across lately…

Lynnwood’s Multi-Choice Transportation system

Planning Complete Streets for an Aging America

Cycling hazard tracking: bikewise

Another cycle hazard site: Bicycle Watchdog

June 23, 2008

Carfree Family Stories

GAIT members Christine and Kent Peterson gave a talk last week at the Towards Carfree Cities conference in Portland. They talk about the joys and challenges of living in Issaquah (and elsewhere) without a car. It makes for inspiring reading. I encourage you to click that link and read their story. They even give GAIT a very nice plug near the beginning of their talk!

Even if the thought of giving up your car sounds like torture, the same process of identifying your real transportation needs that Christine and Kent describe is just as valid if all you want to do is cut back a little on your driving (and with gas prices what they are, who doesn’t want to cut back a little on their driving?)

March 22, 2008

Road angeling

Kent saw a woman picking up trash while walking her dog around Issaquah.

Isn’t that great? See a problem, go ahead and fix it. Don’t need to ask for permission. Don’t need any recognition. Be the change.

The comment thread on that post is full of other people who do similar actions. Nollij called it “road angeling” which looks like a typo, but catches the spirit of picking up trash just because you can.

If you see an act of quiet heroism like this around Issaquah, take a picture and put it in the GAIT Flickr pool (or send it to me and I will).

January 9, 2008

Small steps

I have a little computer on my bike that tells me how fast I’m going and how far I’ve gone. I don’t pay much attention to it. Most of the time I just have it set to show the clock time. The rides I take are almost always to get me somewhere that I need to be, so how far it is doesn’t really matter, I just need to get there. My trips are almost all just around Issaquah. It’s rare for me to be on the bike for more than a couple of miles at a time.

I point these things out because I get the impression people think of me as some endurance gonzo bicycle guy. And somehow when I tell them that my commute is 2.5 miles each way and I usually mosey along at 10-15mph, they still think I’m one of those standard recreational fitness racer wannabe riders. That is so not me.

The kind of riding I do is the kind that anyone can do. Other than rain gear and my helmet I don’t wear any special bike clothes. I ride slow enough that I don’t get sweaty so I don’t have to change or shower when I get where I’m going.

Which is why I was so surprised when I decided to reset the mileage on my bike computer at the beginning of the year so I could start paying attention to it. It was showing 7900 miles! How’d that happen? Granted I’m not quite sure when I reset it last. I think it was when I got this bike which was almost 7 years ago. So 1100 miles a year? Still sounds like a long ways. But that’s only 21 miles a week. 3 miles a day. I guess it’s not so much after all. Those little trips add up.

November 17, 2007

Not first

It’s nice not to be the first to do something since you can steal their ideas learn from their experience. Which is why I was so excited to discover Transportation Alternatives which is pretty much exactly what I’m trying to move towards here only on a slightly different scale. Okay, not slightly, completely:

Our Mission is to reclaim New York City’s streets from the automobile, and to advocate for bicycling, walking and public transit as the best transportation alternatives.

They started in 1973, have 5500 members, ten full-time and four part-time staff, and an annual budget of over a million dollars. Wow!

I’m looking forward to mining through their extensive web site.