This past weekend Elizabeth Victoria Stewart, 27, of Tamarac was killed while riding her bicycle. According to the Sun Sentinel, Elizabeth was struck from behind by a pickup truck while riding with a friend at 7:30am.
No word if any charges will be filed against the driver Greg Robinson, 49, of Boca Raton. My guess is that charges will not be filed and this will be ruled “just another accident”. Very sad. Our condolences go out to the family.
The Miami Herald is reporting that Roger Horne, the program developer for the Belafonte Tacolcy Center in Liberty City, is leading an after-school bicycle club that will teach the youth of Liberty City how to build and maintain bicycles. According to Mr. Horne the program will begin by early November.
Mack Cycle has donated a shipping container that will house the bicycle workshop and Richard Page, a bicycle mechanic at Team Iguana Sports in Miami Beach, will be the resident mechanic of the program.
We have a lot of children in our community who ride bikes and I love bikes, so since we are looking to improve the health outcomes of our community, anyway; let’s do something that they like…our children are our biggest resource, and if you don’t nurture them when they are young, their potential will go away.”
Mr. Horne is absolutely correct in what he said. This is going to be a great program. The Tacolcy Bike & Safety Club is accepting donations of used bicycles and bicycle parts. If you have any questions or if you would like to volunteer, please get in touch with us and we can put you in contact with the right people. Please help support this community initiative.
It seems like it was just yesterday that Bicycling Magazine voted Miami as the worst city for cycling. Mayor Diaz seemed to take this insult personally, and over the course of the past year and a half, his staff has taken great strides to shed this dishonorable accolade.
Although our bicycling infrastructure has yet to see much improvement, awareness through events such as Bike Miami Days has certainly put cycling in the limelight and has shown that the cycling constituency is a force to be reckoned with. With a little luck, City of Miami commissioners will vote on Thursday to approve the Miami Bicycle Master Plan, and in doing so, they will effectively set the stage to improve the bicycle infrastructure of our beloved city.
Mike Lydon, from The Street Plan Collaborative, spent countless hours in the saddle, riding throughout the streets of Miami, developing the bicycle master plan. This comprehensive plan will guide the development of our cycling infrastructure for the next twenty years.
The plan looks to expand the current bikeway network of 16 miles to 280 miles by 2030. It also emphasizes the fundamental need for bicycle parking and education as key components to a successful bicycle strategy. Included in the plan are 950 suggested locations for bicycle parking, comprised of 3000 new bicycles racks. There are even suggested locations for commuter showers.
Please send your commissioner an email (My Commissioner tab above) to let them know how important the Miami Bicycle Master Plan is for our city. The commission meeting will be held on:
Thursday, October 8th at 9:00am
Miami City Hall-Commission Chambers
3500 Pan American Drive, Miami, FL
Please come out to show your support!
The momentum continues. Bike Miami Days proved, yet again, that the car free event is the real deal. With virtually no media coverage or marketing budget, this grassroots movement attracted an estimated 2000 people on Sunday. The streets were filled with bicyclists, pedestrians, skaters and rollerbladers of all ages and backgrounds.
Sources close to Transit Miami have informed us that Waste Services Inc., the lead sponsor of the event, was so impressed that they are considering sponsoring another Bike Miami Days. We must also thank the Miami DDA and the Florida Bicycle Association for their support. Please let your commissioners know how great this event is. You can find a link to your commissioner above.
We leave you with some pictures from the event. The Miami Herald also covered the event and you can find pictures here.
The Burle Marx Miami-New World Design sidewalk on Biscayne Boulevard was finally completed.
Mayor Manny Diaz leaving office with a bicycling legacy behind him.
FDOT makes a “formal” commitment to high speed rail.
The Times Union is reporting that seventh-grader Adam Marino has engaged in a noble act of civil disobedience. Adam and his mother, Janette Kaddo Marino, are defying a Saratoga Springs school policy by biking to Maple Avenue Middle School. Apparently, the school board has a policy that does not allow students to bike or walk to school.
Keep up the good work Adam. You are teaching the school board that there are alternatives to the car and the bus to get to school. While you’re at it, make sure the school board provides you with proper bicycle parking. The bicycle parking should include appropriate bicycle racks, which are covered, in order to protect your bike from the elements. Don’t settle for anything less. You are a young advocate in the making.
Make sure to join in on the fun next month. Pre-Halloween ride. Costumes encouraged!
October 30th, 2009
This morning I joined our friends from the Green Mobility Network for a bike ride on the M-Path to see the improvements which Miami-Dade Transit has been working on for the past two months. Although some improvements have been made, they have left much to be desired. From what I experienced, the improvements are mostly cosmetic and have no real impact on the real problems of the M-Path. Repairs to the asphalt are being done where there is tree-root damage to the path. In some sections, the path has been widened by a few inches as well. Aside from these improvements, not much else has been done. So why am I not satisfied?
I am unsure that the M-Path merits the designation of a “path”. Usually a “path” has as a main characteristic some level of connectivity, and unfortunately the M-Path does not. There is no clear designation or markings for one to follow the M-Path.
Miami Dade Transit has budgeted $700,000 to make these improvements. From what I have seen, there has not been $700,000 worth of work done to the path so far. Although the improvements certainly help, the more pressing safety issues that the M-Path has have not been given priority.
Rather then looking at the M-Path as a whole, Miami-Dade Transit is fixing the problem with a piecemeal strategy. This strategy is wholly flawed and wasteful, as some of the work that is being completed today, will have to be undone in the future when a more comprehensive project to fix the M-Path is undertaken. Safety should take precedence. Below is a list of priorities for the M-Path.
Intersections: Safety issues at street intersections must be addressed. How can we possibly call a path a path, if we cannot safely cross at intersections? This is baffling to me. Initial funding should have been allocated to the intersections, not fixing potholes.
Path Route and Width: The route of the M-Path dangerously meanders near US 1 at times without any protection for the bicyclists from cars. Several of the curves are hazardously blind which happens to place cyclists riding in opposite directions in a precarious situation. This is further exacerbated by the fact that the path is not wide enough, nor does it have any lane markings. The current path route is not always the safest for bicyclists, and needs to be rerouted in certain areas. Wherever possible, the path should follow the straightest, most direct route.
Lighting and Signage: The M-Path becomes very dangerous after sunset. Currently, there is no lighting whatsoever on the M-Path. In addition, clear path signage and mile markers should be placed along the M-Path. First time users of the M-Path will get lost.
Below are a few pictures I took this morning with some commentary:
The Critical Mass ride last night encouraged 150-170 bicyclists to take the streets of Miami. These are big numbers for Miami and prove that the momentum for bicycling is really picking up here.
The ride was well organized and the turnout created quite a spectacle. We started at Government Center around 7:00pm and headed west on Flagler Street through Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Brickell and back to Government Center. People on the street were cheering, as if it were a race. Cars had no option but to yield to the bicyclists.
Politicians in Miami, be forewarned, the cycling constituency is politically active and you will have to answer to us. We care about our city, and we promise to hold you accountable for the lack of bicycling infrastructure in our city. Whether its Regalado or Sanchez that becomes our next Mayor, it would be wise to engage the cycling electorate. Bicyclists come in all shapes and sizes, and we will no longer tolerate being relegated to riding on the sidewalk.
A special “thank you” to Rydel at Miami Bike Scene for being so diligent and promoting this great event. Please spread the word. I would personally like to see twice as many bicyclists at the next Critical Mass event on Friday October 30th. I think it’s possible. Let’s make it happen.
Scientific American is reporting that that best lead indicator for bikeability are women riders. Jan Garrard, a senior lecturer at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia, says,
If you want to know if an urban environment supports cycling, you can forget about all the detailed ‘bikeability indexes’—just measure the proportion of cyclists who are female.”
Apparently, women are more averse to risk then men; therefore they are considered an “indicator species”. So how does this influence or hinder women from riding a bicycle? Well, risk aversion translates into increased demand for safe bicycle infrastructure as a precondition for riding. Perhaps it is because they are smarter then men too, but women tend to avoid busy streets when riding, and often choose the safer, less direct route to their destination.
So please, let’s make bicycling safer for women. Not for my sake, but for their sake. Well, perhaps for my sake too…there’s just something about a woman on a bicycle. It’s hot.
Friday, September 25th @ 6:30pm
101 NW First St
This will be the first Critical Mass ride of the 2009 Fall season. As always the ride begins from Government Center in Downtown Miami. The ride will pass through East Little Havana, East Coral Gables, Southeast Gables, Coconut Grove, Vizcaya, Brickell & Downtown Miami. 15 miles total. Bring your friends with bikes. See you there!
Participants are to keep a moderate pace, it’s very important that the group stays together. It makes corking easier and the ride much smoother for everyone involved (cyclists/motorists/pedestrians). Also, make sure to arrive on schedule, that’s 6:30pm. Bring bicycle lights, it’s the law! The ride usually leaves at 7pm sharp but it’s recommended to arrive earlier.
Get comfortable with riding in the road - it’s your right!
The Bike Miami Days Team invites you to a free bike ride through MiMo, Little Haiti & the Upper Eastside this Sunday to becoming safer, better, more confident city cyclists. No registration is required and it is completely free.
Officers from the City of Miami Police Department Bicycle Unit, will be on hand to teach you the basics of riding safe in the road so that you can confidently commute and run errands on your bicycle.
The day will start with an “A-B-C Quick Check”(Air, Brakes and Chain). You’ll learn how to fit your bicycle helmet for optimum safety. You will also learn the basic Rules, Rights and Responsibilities of Cyclists and Motorists before heading out for a short ride – just under 2 hours long. The ride will stop for water and bathroom breaks and learning opportunities as you’ll explore Miami’s Historic Upper Eastside neighborhoods. At the end of the ride, you’re invited to join the City of Miami Bicycle Coordinator, Collin Worth, and other volunteers for lunch. Destination to be determined.
Date: Sunday September 27, 2009
Where Upper Eastside City of Miami Net Office
6599 Biscayne Blvd View Map
Need More Info?
Copenhagen isn’t content with the fact that only 55% percent of its population bikes everyday. In order to encourage more bicycling, they are expanding their bicycling network to the outlying areas with bicycle superhighways. The idea is for bicyclists to maintain an average speed of 12mph by utilizing a series of three existing bicycle routes which will be converted into bicycle super highways with a series of improvements which include timed lights. Read more about it here. Simply brilliant.
Work is moving ahead very slowly on the M-path. Too slowly actually. This work in progress has become a hazard for bicyclists. I’m not sure who is in charge of the M-Path project, but I know they can do better. Someone may get hurt out there. Please use caution when using the M-Path. The Transit Miami eye is watching the M-Path project very closely…
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