Welcome to the week.
Today’s Monday Roundup is made possible by Splendid Cycles, who reminds you to check out their BIG Year-end Bike Sale for great deals on electric bikes from Xtracycle, Tern, Larry vs Harry, and more.
Here are the most notable items we came across in the past seven days…
You mad Nike?: The sports apparel juggernaut spent over $900,000 to help kill the Metro transportation funding measure.
Bidens on bikes: TMZ has video of President-elect Joe Biden and First Lady-to-be Jill Biden riding bikes on a bike path in Delaware. My fave part of the clip is at the end when someone says “Oh you can’t drive there!” when someone in Biden’s protective unit drives a big SUV on the bike-only path.
The view from London: In an interview with Streetsblog, London’s walking and cycling commissioner said the key to moving the needle is for the transportation system to “own the health agenda”. “Unless the transport agencies are responsible for the health outcomes, it won’t happen.”
Collegiate cycling strides: Two major professional cycling teams plan to fund new teams at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in a bid to make the sport of cycling sport less white.
Legalizing vigilantism: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has put forth changes to the state’s “Stand your ground” law that would increase penalties for protestors who block roads and allow drivers more loopholes to get away with using cars as weapons.
Bikes can save cities: Bogota, Colombia — the place that invested big on BRT (bus rapid transit) and pioneered the ciclovia — is now betting that the key to Covid recovery will be bicycles.
Grids gird against car ownership: New research shows that as the U.S. strengthens its street grid car ownership rates decline.
Hype-worthy clothing: Thank you Rapha for making stuff that transcends the cycling world. The apparel maker’s dedication to design and fashion is getting new eyes on our sport.
Kids and traffic trauma: “Police in the west German city of Hamm are using drawings by six-year-olds to trace a rogue driver who allegedly smashed through a road barrier,” says this report from the BBC.
EU on the right path: As a new administration enters the White House, they’d be wise to read this overview of how transport policy in the EU is becoming more bike-friendly. One line that caught my eye: “The shift in political will is backed up by significant funding.” Funny that.
Older riders: Research from the Netherlands shows a worrying trend that older electric bike operators are involved in more injuries and fatal crashes.
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Per UK article: This is the key point for the State of Oregon (and Washington) that the “key to moving the needle is for the transportation system to “own the health agenda”. Unless the transport agencies are responsible for the health outcomes, it won’t happen.”
The recent ODoT struggle with I-5 mid-city is a key test of this. For our DOTs to be effective long term facility managers they need to start including health outcomes of their host communities living and working next to their roadways and not just their direct customers. (And only having only a handful of publicly accessible air quality monitoring stations no longer cuts it.)
From that article: “People see it and want it for their neighborhood.” Just like the bike parking corrals, an undoubted infrastructure success, if PBOT hits on a policy that works there will be demand for more of it. In this case Mr. Norman was talking about planters placed as diverters to prevent “rat-running”.
AH yes, the universally beloved planter as diverter that inspired warm neighborly meetings such as: https://bikeportland.org/2017/11/16/mt-tabor-neighborhood-votes-45-5-against-diverter-at-50th-and-lincoln-254714
I agree that connecting transportation and health is vital, but it’s worth remembering that different communities have different ideas about what is good for their health or safety. Unfortunately widescale buy-in seems harder than ever these days, even with things that seem like they would be widely embraced.
I think it would help to bring stakeholders into the process at the problem solving stage rather than handing them a solution to a problem they didn’t realize they had. Create a small committee of neighbors to explore solutions and be part of the project for the duration. Getting real public involvement takes more time, but I think it’s worth it. People tend to accept things better if it feels like a community decision.
Many bike corrals were placed at the request of adjacent business owners and I think they are rated a success. However if the thing were not already on the ground nearby they wouldn’t know to ask for it.
Maybe we should just move Trumps wall ( yes I know it is a fantasy) to the Northern Border of Florida, then give the state to the Cubans. They will straighten out their transportation policy and their health care system as well.
I can see it now, millions of rich white college kids illegally breaching the barrier every spring, trying to invade Florida, as the New York and Quebec retirees in Florida valiantly stand their ground to defend their pristine beaches.
I actually agree 100%. Just ensure that Rubio is sent there permanently too.
These problems are typical of heavy bikes and riding too fast but I’m glad they can quickly dismiss heavy bikes that go faster as the culprit.
Or maybe it’s just old people who don’t have adequate proprioception? Yes, I know they are Dutch, but I don’t think every Dutch person rides bikes their whole lives. Anyone who is in an elderly age group would have significant risk if they were just taking up cycling. You and I have a lifetime of experience to inform our capabilities when we get old. Not everyone has that to fall back on.
E-Cargo bikes are heavy bikes that go faster yet we don’t see them colliding with objects very often.
When I was in the Netherlands the main thing I noticed was the almost universal lack of helmet use. In Amsterdam the people tended to ride relatively slow so maybe the consequences of crashes were less severe. When you speed up your kinetic energy goes up by the power of 2 so going from 2 mph to 4 mph increases your energy 4X (Energy = 1/2 x weight (mass) x velocity squared). If you land on your head all the energy is absorbed there. It does not surprise me that increases in speed increases deaths and injury.
Nike spent about 1% of what they would have paid annually in a tax on their payroll costs. I don’t know if that counts as anger, particularly when the tax would not have sunset after all these projects were done. It continues to amaze that “transit activists” are surprised this didn’t pass.
Title should be “smart company saves a ton of money by torpedoing new tax”. In a non-pandemic year, this measure may have passed, but Nike read the tea leaves and knew that this one would be easy to kill.
This feels like a weird (very capitalist) ask, but we’re in the market for an e-bike (or maybe a bike upgrade) and I would love to know about more bike sales around town as “the holidays” get closer! Not sure if you’re open to either keeping an updated page on it, or doing weekly posts or something?
Hi Lucy. That’s a great suggestion. Thank you. A e-bike buyer’s guide! Wish I could assign that to a staff person. I’ll consider putting something together.
I like that idea. Thanks for the suggestion. Wish I could just assign this to a staffer… But I’ll try to make something happen soon.
Before covid and the current bike shortages, bike shops would have their lowest prices of the year on new bikes in January.
Thanks Jonathan! I totally understand if you don’t have time – maybe I can try to put my own resource together!
David that’s great info!! If we don’t find anything we’re stoked about we’ll just wait until January.
If I was going to get a cargo bike, I’d go to Splendid. They have “A Big Bike Sale!!!” right now.
I got an e-bike from Cynergy and it’s been really great. Cynergy does have some bikes though, and I think you might find a sale item here or there. Last time I was there, a few weeks ago, the floor was pretty full.