Spokespeople http://spokespeople.us/blog Linking people through neighborhoods along secure bike routes Sat, 07 Jun 2014 00:03:48 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.5 Charming Wallingford Gardens. Spokespeople Rides June 7! http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/june-2014/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/june-2014/#comments Sat, 07 Jun 2014 00:02:59 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=1011 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Read more about our June 7th ride on Meetup or Facebook!

June might be the very best time to see the lush and lovely gardens of Wallingford. We’ll visit postage-sized shade gardens, urban food gardens, odd varieties of peonies, maybe even a roof garden!

Most of our ride will be along greenways (safe healthy streets) proposed by Greenways groups in Wallingford and Green Lake. While it is a short 5-mile loop ride, there are hills that we’ll take slowly. We hope you can join us!

All Wallingford Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at N. 42nd and Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please arrive by 11:45 if you are new to riding in groups or need help adjusting your helmet or your bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques. FAMILIES WELCOME!

Please Contact Ride Leader Cathy Tuttle (206) 713-5869 with any questions. We’ll stop frequently and should be back at the starting point by 2 pm at the latest.

See more ride details and subscribe to our monthly blog at www.Spokespeople.us.

See our calendar for more details on these June-July easy rides and safe streets events.

  • June 1: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 1: Bicycle Sundae Alleycat. 12pm.
  • June 1: Kidical Mass.
  • June 2: Rainier Valley Greenways SDOT meeting. 6pm.
  • June 3: Northgate Pedestrian Bike bridge. 5:30pm.
  • June 3: Central Greenways meeting. 6pm.
  • June 4: U-District Greenways meeting. 6pm.
  • June 4: Bicycle Advisory Board. 6pm.
  • June 5: Licton Springs area greenways meeting. 6pm.
  • June 6: Transportation Choices meeting on Bike Plan. 12pm.
  • June 7: Goodwill & UW Police Bike Sales. 9am.
  • June 7: Spokespeople Rides Wallingford 12-2pm.
  • June 11: Pedestrian Advisory Board 6pm.
  • June 14: Livable Streets Celebration. Children’s Hospital 10a-2p.
  • June 15: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 14: Girls of Summer Alleycat. 2pm.
  • June 17: All Women’s Maintenance for everyday bike riders 6:30pm.
  • June 18: Calming Arterial Streets webinar. 11a-12:30p.
  • June 18: TrafficLab Green Light District. 5:30pm.
  • June 21: Solstice Parade. Fremont 12pm.
  • June 25: PSRC Bike-Ped Committee. 10a-12p.
  • June 27: SLOW Ride: Seven Vistas, Three Hills, No Sweat! 11am.
  • June 29: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 29: Bike-citement! Columbia City. 11a-3p.
  • July 6: Kidical Mass

You might want to follow events through:
www.meetup.com/cascaderides
www.SeattleGreenways.org
www.familybike.org/kidical-mass-seattle
www.seattlecriticallass.wordpress.com
www.Spokespeople.us

Making a new place at the table for safer streets

As I’ve travelled around Seattle, I’ve been thinking a lot in the past week about safe and healthy streets. The work I do through Spokespeople, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways, Memorial Walks, and I brake for people is all about making streets safe for people to walk and bike on through better street engineering – as well as raising general public awareness so that we all keep looking out for each other.

I’ve seen wonderful changes in the past few years. The Seattle Department of Transportation and other local advocacy groups have embraced the vision of streets as safe and healthy places for people, not just places to move and store cars. It is exhilarating to be at the forefront of this movement for positive change.

Now it is time to set some more places at our table. I work with hundreds of people and dozens of groups all over Seattle. What is becoming ever more clear is the vast disparity between what is a safe and healthy street in a high income neighborhood and what is a safe and healthy street in communities of color and economic insecurity.

This isn’t to say we have safe and healthy streets in rich neighborhoods. Far from it! There are distracted drivers who fail to yield, insufficient crossing times, speeding cars, unprotected intersections along school walking routes, and far more carnage laid at the altar of easy motoring than we care to think about in all neighborhoods.

However, getting around by walking and biking is an order of magnitude more difficult in many of the communities where I spend a lot of my time. Safe and healthy streets take on new meanings with random violence, drive by shootings, and muddy pathways through places we fear walking at night.

We need to be proactive in supporting places where people cannot afford to drive or take the bus – places where people have no way to afford or store even a bicycle. Barb Chamberlain, Executive Director of Washington Bikes wrote a beautiful editorial about privilege and entitlement embedded in owning and using a bicycle.

We need to give first to places where children spend all day inside in front of a screen because their streets aren’t safe enough to walk to the park (see infographic Do all kids have safe places to be active?) We need to speak up for people in Seattle whose walkways are a muddy ditch, who have no sidewalks on their way to school, to the grocery, to the transit hub. Our best efforts must support people who live on fast-moving commercial streets lined with apartment buildings and no safe way to get across them (see local greenways leaders speak up for safe healthy streets in this video).

How can you help?

  • Put a play street in your neighborhood!
  • If you can afford the bikes, get your family riding bikes (two articles about FamilyRide Madi Carlson!) Actively Northwest: Health in Action and Seattle’s Child: All Aboard
  • Bike Works can help you find an affordable bike, and there are even bike sales this weekend by the UW Police and Goodwill!
  • Councilmember Sally Bagshaw published a handy guide of how you can “Take Back Your Street” with parties, play, and active events.
  • Add this to your “must-have” apps 10 Words or Less of Biking Wisdom. You can add your own pithy reasons for why you like or dislike biking in a certain location.
  • Report problems to the City with your street through Find it Fix it–graffiti, dumping, abandoned vehicles, broken lights, potholes. The City can’t fix it if they don’t know it’s broken.
  • Join your local Seattle Neighborhood Greenways group. Neighbors from Rainier Valley Greenways to Lake City Greenways are joining up all over the city to help make their streets safe and healthy places for people.

Happy Biking and Keep Pedaling!

Cathy Tuttle (206)713-5869
Spokespeople on Seattle Neighborhood Greenways

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Cranksgiving in May. Spokespeople Rides May 3! http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/may-2014/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/may-2014/#comments Thu, 01 May 2014 21:40:18 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=1005 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Read more about our May 3rd ride on Meetup or Facebook!

May is Bike to Work and Bike to School month–there are so many wonderful opportunities to be outside and riding your bicycle with friends this month.

We welcome new S.L.O.W. rides for Senior Ladies on Wheels, Easy Rides, monthly Kidical Mass rides for families, Critical Lass Rides for women who want a fun social ride, and so many others!

We’ll try to keep these rides up-to-date and posted on the Spokespeople calendar.

Please note Spokespeople Wallingford rides now start at noon.

Saturday, May 3 at noon join FamilyWorks Family Resource Center and Food Bank Director Jake Weber and Seattle Neighborhood Greenways Director Cathy Tuttle on a ride to and from Wallingford to the University Farmer’s Market. Learn how to pack the produce you buy on a bicycle. We’ll return with produce we buy in the U-District (bring money!) to give to the Wallingford Food Bank. Jake will give us a tour of the Food Bank when we return.

FamilyWorks serves north central Seattle people who are seeking a path to long-term resiliency and might not otherwise have access to healthy food or parenting- and life-skills resources.

The U District Farmers Market is part of a community-based, non-profit alliance of locally managed farmer’s markets that support local, organic businesses.

Most of our ride will be along greenways (safe healthy streets) proposed by Greenways groups in Wallingford and the U-District. While it is a short 5-mile loop ride, there are hills that we’ll take slowly. We hope you can join us!

All Wallingford Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at N. 42nd and Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please arrive by 11:45 if you are new to riding in groups or need help adjusting your helmet or your bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques. FAMILIES WELCOME!

Please Contact Ride Leader Cathy Tuttle (206) 713-5869 with any questions. We’ll stop frequently and should be back at the starting point by 2 pm at the latest.

See more ride details and subscribe to our monthly blog at www.Spokespeople.us.

See our calendar for more details on these May-June easy rides and safe streets events.

  • May 1: Start of Bike to Work and Bike to School Month!
  • May 3: Critical Lass to Pedaler’s Fair. Montlake 9:30a.
  • May 3: Pedaler’s Fair. Montlake 10a-6p.
  • May 3-4: Jane’s Walks. International walk event. All day.
  • May 4: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • May 4: Community Budget Priorities Conference. Seattle Center 11a-3p.
  • May 4: NE Greenways Route Exploration. Bryant 1:30-3:30pm.
  • May 4: Hidden Gardens Walk. Central 2-4 p.m.
  • May 4: Lake City Safe Routes to School Walk. 2-4pm.
  • May 4: Park My Viaduct Party. Greenwood 4-8pm.
  • May 5: Community Climate Forum on Moving the Needle. Downtown 5-7pm.
  • May 6: Westlake Action Team. Fremont 5:30pm.
  • May 6: Wedgwood Neighborhood Greenways SDOT Open House. 6:30-7:30pm.
  • May 7: Seattle Bike Advisory Board. Downtown. 6-8pm.
  • May 8: Community Budget Workshop on Transportation. Garfield HS 6-8p.
  • May 8: Downtown Policy Ride. 4:30-5:30pm.
  • May 9: Greenwood-Phinney Design Studio and Party. 6-9pm.
  • May 11: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • May 11: Critical Lass. Central District 12-3pm
  • May 12: Women’s Commute-”Her” Tips. Fremont 6-7:30p.
  • May 13: Pedestrian safety in Pinehurst SDOT community meeting. 3-4:30pm
  • May 14: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. Downtown. 6-8pm.
  • May 14: Pedestrian safety in Pinehurst SDOT community meeting. 6:30-8pm.
  • May 15: Rainier Valley Policy Ride. 4:30-5:30pm.
  • May 15: Ballard Greenways monthly meeting. 7:30pm.
  • May 18: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • May 18: Alki Summer Streets. West Seattle 11a-5p.
  • May 21: Webinar for Safe Routes to School.
  • May 21: Ride of Silence. 6:30-8:30pm.
  • May 27: Queen Anne Greenways Monthly meeting. 6:30pm.
  • May 28: PSRC Ped/Bike Committee. Downtown. 1-2:30pm.
  • May 29: Ballard Street Party. 4-8pm.
  • May 31: SLOW Ride to Hidden Gardens. Central 11a-2p.
  • June 1: Bicycle Sunday. Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 2: Rainier Valley Greenways SDOT Open House. 6-7:30pm.

You might want to follow events through:
www.meetup.com/cascaderides
www.SeattleGreenways.org
www.familybike.org/kidical-mass-seattle
www.seattlecriticallass.wordpress.com
www.Spokespeople.us

Check out these outstanding all ages and abilities bike rides in May!

  • May 3: Spokespeople Rides to the University Farmer’s Market 12-2pm.
  • May 3: Kidical Mass goes to Pedaler’s Fair Montlake. 9:30am
  • May 11: Critical Lass goes to Lake WA Blvd. 12-3pm.
  • May 18: Alki Summer Streets 11a-5p.
  • May 31: SLOW Ride to Hidden Gardens. Central 11a-2pm.
  • May 4, 11, 18: Lake WA Blvd Sunday Parkways 10a-6pm.

A little more bikey news

Bikeyface is a great cartoonist who has summed up why biking commuting as a woman is a challenge “Not asking for it.”

Seattle Neighborhood Greenways leaders speak up in a video about what they are looking for in the next Seattle Department of Transportation Director, who will be selected in the next few months. (Watch the full 15-minute version.)

Councilmember Sally Bagshaw published a handy guide of how you can “Take Back Your Street” with parties, play, and active events.

Add this to your “must-have” apps: 10 Words or Less of Biking Wisdom. You can add your own pithy reasons for why you like or dislike biking in a certain location.

The Seattle Bicycle Master Plan was voted on and passed unanimously through Seattle City Council. Now we need to implement the plan!

You can support the work of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways to advocate for and activate safe, family-friendly streets on Tuesday May 6 with the 24 hour Seattle GiveBIG.

We’ll try to keep rides and events of interest to Spokespeople posted on our calendar.

Happy Biking and Keep Pedaling!

Cathy Tuttle (206)713-5869
Spokespeople on Seattle Neighborhood Greenways

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April showers Spokespeople Rides and News http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/april-2014/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/april-2014/#comments Fri, 04 Apr 2014 05:33:54 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=996 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Read more about our April 5th ride on Meetup or Facebook!

There are so many new, comfortable family-friendly rides for all ages and all abilities–many of these rides are on greenways, or soon-to-be greenways! And spring is here!

We welcome new S.L.O.W. rides for Senior Ladies on Wheels, Easy Rides, monthly Kidical Mass rides for families, Critical Lass Rides for women who want a fun social ride, and so many others!

We’ll try to keep these rides up-to-date and posted on the Spokespeople calendar.

Please note Spokespeople Wallingford rides now start at noon.

Saturday, April 5th at noon join UW Active Transportation Specialist Ted Sweeney and Seattle Neighborhood Greenways Executive Director Cathy Tuttle on a ride to and from Wallingford to the UW campus to see what’s been happening on campus and off to make bicycling easier, safer, and more convenient.

Most of our ride will be along greenways (safe healthy streets) proposed by Greenways groups in Wallingford and the U-District and multi-use trails including the Burke Gilman Trail. While this is a short 5-mile loop ride, there are hills that we’ll take slowly. We hope you can join us!

All Wallingford Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at N. 42nd and Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please arrive by 11:45 if you are new to riding in groups or need help adjusting your helmet or your bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques. FAMILIES WELCOME!

Please Contact Ride Leader Cathy Tuttle (206) 713-5869 with any questions. We’ll stop frequently and should be back at the starting point by 3 pm at the latest, and likely earlier.

See more ride details and subscribe to our monthly blog at www.Spokespeople.us.

See our calendar for more details on these April-May easy rides and safe streets events.

  • April 2: Seattle Bike Advisory Board. Downtown. 6-8pm.
  • April 3: Walkable Washington Symposium. Downtown. 9a-4p.
  • April 4: Elly Blue in Tacoma. Tacoma. 2 events.
  • April 5: Seattle Neighborhood Summit. Seattle Center 9a-1p.
  • April 5: Spokespeople Rides to UW Campus. 12-2pm.
  • April 6: Pop-Up Greenway Celebration. Columbia City. 11a-3p.
  • April 6: Kidical Mass goes to the Moisture Festival. Wallingford 12-4pm.
  • April 7: Comprehensive Plan Open House. Loyal Heights. 5:30-7:30pm.
  • April 7: Public Hearing on Parks Funding. City Hall. 6pm.
  • April 8: Comprehensive Plan Open House. Northgate. 6-8pm.
  • April 8: Groundswell NW hosts Mayor Murray. Ballard. 6:30pm.
  • April 8: Cycling Wisdom by Women, for Women. Downtown. 7-9pm.
  • April 9: Comprehensive Plan Open House. Delridge. 6-8pm.
  • April 9: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. Downtown. 6-8pm.
  • April 10: WSDOT presentation on SR520. Montlake. 6:30pm.
  • April 14: Seattle Council discusses Bike Master Plan. Downtown 2pm.
  • April 14: Comprehensive Plan Open House. Central. 6-8pm.
  • April 15: Comprehensive Plan Open House. Rainier. 6-8pm.
  • April 15: Traffic Lab Wonkathon. Pioneer Square. 6-8:30pm.
  • April 16: PSRC Ped/Bike Committee. Downtown. 1-2:30pm.
  • April 16: SDOT Director Search. City Hall. 2-4pm.
  • April 17: Ballard Greenways monthly meeting. 7:30pm.
  • April 19: Critical Lass goes to Skye. Greenwood. 11a-2p.
  • April 19: SLOW Ride to Central Greenways. Central 4pm.
  • April 22: Queen Anne Greenways Monthly meeting. 6pm.
  • April 22: Earth Day.
  • April 22: VOTE on keeping METRO buses going strong.
  • April 24: Rainier Valley Greenways monthly meeting. Columbia City. 6:30-8:30pm.
  • April 26: Stairway Spring Clean. Citywide all day Earth Day event.
  • April 26: Silly Hilly. Central/Capitol Hill/Montlake. 2-5pm.
  • May 3: Spokespeople Rides to Food Banks. 12-2pm.
  • May 3-4: Jane’s Walks. International walk event. All day.

You might want to follow events through:
www.meetup.com/cascaderides
www.SeattleGreenways.org
www.familybike.org/kidical-mass-seattle
www.seattlecriticallass.wordpress.com
www.Spokespeople.us

Check out these outstanding bike rides in April!

  • April 5: Spokespeople Rides to UW Campus. 12-2pm.
  • April 6: Kidical Mass goes to the Moisture Festival. Wallingford 12-4pm.
  • April 19: Critical Lass goes to Skye Nursery. Greenwood. 11a-2p.
  • April 19: SLOW Ride to Central Greenways. Central 4pm.
  • April 26: Silly Hilly. Central/Capitol Hill/Montlake. 2-5pm.

A little more bikey news

Our own Family Biking Blogger @FamilyRide Madi and Merlin Rainwater, S.L.O.W. Rides leader will be featured at the Cycling Wisdom by Women, for Women at the downtown REI flagship store on April 8, 7-9pm.

Let’s find a new Seattle Department of Transportation director who understands how to make our streets safe and healthy places for people. Here is a vimeo explaining why streets need to be planned for people. Here is a survey and meetings you can answer about choosing the next director.

Bikeyface is a great cartoonist who has summed up almost everything you need to know about why we need great infrastructure for biking. In this multi-panel cartoon called “If I owned the road.”

Boston Doctors are now Prescribing Bike-Share Memberships, offering low-income residents struggling with obesity an annual Hubway bike share membership for the low price of $5.

Add this to your “must-have” apps 10 Words or Less of Biking Wisdom. You can add your own pithy reasons for why you like or dislike biking in a certain location.

You can support the work of the safe streets advocacy work of Greenways with colorful bumper stickers available only at www.Ibrakeforpeople.com.

We’ll try to keep rides and events of interest to Spokespeople posted on our calendar.

Happy Biking and Keep Pedaling!

Cathy Tuttle (206)713-5869
Spokespeople on Seattle Neighborhood Greenways

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J.C. Olmsted was here: Spokespeople rides in March http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/march-2014/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/march-2014/#comments Thu, 27 Feb 2014 06:18:28 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=979 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Read more about our March 1 ride on Meetup or Facebook!

There are so many new, comfortable family-friendly rides for all ages and all abilities. And so many of these rides are on greenways, or soon-to-be greenways! And spring is coming!

We welcome new S.L.O.W. rides for Senior Ladies on Wheels, Easy Rides, monthly Kidical Mass rides for families, Critical Lass Rides for women who want a fun social ride, and so many others!

We’ll try to keep these rides up-to-date and posted on the Spokespeople calendar.

Saturday, March 1 at noon join Architectural Historian Michael Herschensohn and me, Cathy Tuttle, on a ride to and from Wallingford to the UW campus to see how John Charles Olmsted’s plan for the Alaska Yukon Pacific Exhibition has evolved over the last 100+ years, including the buildings around the fountain beginning at the Stalinist Red Square, Barnet Newman Obelisk and George Washington Statue. A real-time THEN and NOW ride.

Michael Herschensohn, Ph.D., is the President of the Queen Anne Historical Society and former Director of the Museum of History and Industry.

Most of our ride will be along greenways (safe healthy streets) proposed by Greenways groups in Wallingford and the U-District. While it is a short 5-mile loop ride, there are hills that we’ll take slowly. We hope you can join us!

All Wallingford Spokespeople rides begin and end at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at N. 42nd and Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please arrive by 11:45 if you are new to riding in groups or need help adjusting your helmet or your bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques. FAMILIES WELCOME!

Please Contact Ride Leader Cathy Tuttle 206-713-5869 with any questions. We’ll stop frequently and should be back at the starting point by 3 pm at the latest.

See more ride details and subscribe to our monthly blog at www.Spokespeople.us. Please note Spokespeople Wallingford rides now and forevermore start at noon.

Distance: 5 miles
Pace: Easy [Under 10mph]
Terrain: Rolling
Regroup: Stay together
Weather Cancels?: No rain cancellation

See our calendar for more details on these March-April easy rides and events.

  • Feb 27: Transportation Lobby Day. Olympia www.wabikes.org
  • Feb 27: Women on Wheels. Greenlake. 6:30-9:30.
  • March 1: Kidical Mass Rides to Bike Expo. Ballard Locks to Smith Cove. 9am.
  • March 1-2: Cascade Bicycle Club Bike Expo. Smith Cove/Magnolia.
  • March 1: Spokespeople Rides: J.C. Olmsted was here. 12-3p.
  • March 2: Critical Lass to Bike Expo. South Lake Union to Smith Cove. 9:30am
  • March 2: S.L.O.W. Ride to Bike Expo. I-90 to Smith Cove. 10:30am
  • March 5: Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • March 6: Parks Legacy Public Hearing. Miller. 6-9pm.
  • March 11: Accessible Pedestrian Signals. Free Webinar. 11a-1p.
  • March 12: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • March 13: Lake City Greenways SDOT Public Meeting 6-7:30pm.
  • March 17: Think Green!
  • March 19: PSRC Pedestrian Bike Committee. Downtown. 1-2:30pm.
  • March 20: Ballard Greenways SDOT Public Meeting 6-7:30pm.
  • March 23: Bike Works Benefit Auction. Downtown 4:30-9pm.
  • March 28: Lake City Traffic Safety Corridor Launch 3:30-5:30pm
  • April 3: Feet First Walkable Washington Symposium. Downtown 9a-4p
  • April 5: Seattle Neighborhood Summit. Seattle Center 9a-1p.
  • April 26: Seattle Stairway Spring Cleaning Day. Sign up w Feet First.

You might want to follow events through:
www.meetup.com/cascaderides
www.SeattleGreenways.org
www.familybike.org/kidical-mass-seattle
www.seattlecriticallass.wordpress.com
www.Spokespeople.us

A little more bikey news

We want safe streets everywhere. We want to maintain our streets, increase transit, improve sidewalks, and we’re willing to pay for it! Full Washington State report. Let’s pass a transportation bill that meets our needs please!

Our own Family Biking Blogger, Spokespeople friend @FamilyRide Madi, recounts how she backed into the life of fabulous bike mom & blogger: On Writing & Riding: Family Ride

As if we need more great reasons to move to Portland, here comes an “Action Plan for an Age-Friendly Portland” that states: “Transportation infrastructure must be built to human scale, developed with universal design principles (above and beyond required minimum accessibility standards), and must ultimately lead to safe, healthy, efficient, and well-maintained systems.”

Another great reason to support neighborhood greenways–healthy air when you walk and bike! UW professors create a compelling graphic of where to bike if you want to breathe healthy air.

Add this to your “must-have” apps 10 Words or Less of Biking Wisdom. You can add your own pithy reasons for why you like or dislike biking in a certain location.

New Mayor Ed Murray makes a bold commitment to get 75% of city commuters walking, biking, carpooling or using transit. In his State of the City, Mayor Murray said, “Cities are laboratories of bold persistent experimentation where creative ideas come from”. The Mayor also pledged support for Bike Share, Transit, climate change planning, comprehensive transportation planning.

You can support the work of the safe streets advocacy work of Greenways with colorful bumper stickers available only at www.Ibrakeforpeople.com.

We’ll try to keep rides and events of interest to Spokespeople posted on our calendar.

Happy Biking and Keep Pedaling!

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Spokespeople Ride to Valentines and Roses February 1, 2014 at NOON http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/february-2014/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/february-2014/#comments Thu, 30 Jan 2014 08:48:25 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=969 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Read more about our February ride on Meetup.com.

I think the big news at Spokespeople is that there are so many new, comfortable family-friendly rides for all ages and all abilities. And so many of these rides are on greenways, or soon-to-be greenways! In the past seven years of safe streets advocacy, I have never seen such a level of commitment and optimism!

We welcome new S.L.O.W. rides for Senior Ladies on Wheels, Easy Rides, monthly Kidical Mass rides for families, Critical Lass Rides for women who want a fun social ride, and so, so many others!

We’ll try to keep these rides up-to-date and posted on the Spokespeople calendar.

Please note Spokespeople Wallingford rides now and forevermore start at noon.

Saturday, February 1 at noon. Get ready for a sweet Valentine’s Day with a trip to Woodland Park Zoo Rose Garden and then to Theo’s Chocolate in Fremont. Who knows, you might even see a rosebud, and for sure you can sample some sweet chocolate! Most of our ride will be along greenways (safe healthy streets) proposed by Greenways groups in Wallingford, Green Lake, and Fremont. While it is a short 5-mile loop ride, there are hills that we’ll take slowly. We hope you can join us!

All Wallingford Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at N. 42nd and Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center.

New riders welcome! Please arrive by 11:45 if you are new to riding in groups or need help adjusting your helmet or your bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques. FAMILIES WELCOME!

Please Contact Ride Leader Cathy Tuttle (206) 713-5869 with any questions.

We’ll stop frequently and should be back at the starting point by 3 pm at the latest.
See more ride details and subscribe to our monthly blog at www.Spokespeople.us.

Below is a picture of the start of last year’s ride to Theo’s chocolate and the Woodland Park Rose Garden.

A little more bikey news

We want safe streets everywhere. We want to maintain our streets, increase transit, improve sidewalks, and we’re willing to pay for it! Full Washington State report. Let’s pass a transportation bill that meets our needs please!

The 4 biggest SEATTLE greenway stories of 2013.

  1. Ballard, Beacon Hill, Delridge, 39th NE, and Wallingford Greenways (soon) open!
  2. City of Seattle (Mayor, Council, SDOT) invested $5 million in walking and biking safety improvements that local groups advocated for! And we maxed out the SDOT 2014 budget for greenway investments.
  3. The proposed Bike Master Plan update has 249.5 miles of greenways–95% came from Seattle Neighborhood Greenways crowd-sourced mapping.
  4. S.L.O.W. Rides, Critical Lass, Kidical Mass, and Spokespeople rides often travel now on current and future greenways.

Safe streets for our kids now! Bikes are a popular present for Christmas. And no doubt many kids are jumping with excitement about their new bicycles right now. However, very soon they will get wise to the nature of the world. Cartoonist bikeyface longs for a healthier biking environment, especially for kids.

You can support the work of the safe streets advocacy work of Greenways with these colorful bumper stickers available only at www.Ibrakeforpeople.com.

More Great Events and Rides

Women on Wheels. Gregg’s Greenlake Cycles is sponsoring this fun women-only event on Thursday, February 27 at 6:30pm. Free but RSVP highly recommended.

Kidical Mass February 9 Judkins Park Playground to the new Beacon Hill Greenway. Gather at 12:30 pm on Saturday February 9.

We’ll try to keep rides and events of interest to Spokespeople posted on our calendar.

Happy Biking and Keep Pedaling!

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Oh Henry! SPOKESPEOPLE RIDES TO PUBLIC ART November 2013 http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/november-2013/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/november-2013/#comments Sat, 02 Nov 2013 03:30:57 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=853 Hello Spokespeople

Our Monthly Ride

Saturday, November 2, is going to be a great day for a ride! We’ll ride even in the rain. It will be fun. We’ll meet on Densmore and 42nd in Wallingford and leave at 2 p.m. for what promises to be an excellent ride!

Nov 2 Oh Henry! Public Art you can see along the Burke Gilman Trail or nearby. From the Canal Street substation in Fremont to the Wall of Death in the U-District, we’ll show how public art is integrated into our daily lives and adds value without our necessarily knowing it is there. Architectural Historian Michael Herschensohn has developed an amazing behind the scenes tour with staff from Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture.

Ride details on the Cascade website.

Please subscribe to our monthly newsletter-SUBSCRIBE to by clicking here!

To see what our rides are like, photos of past rides are on Facebook or onwww.spokespeople.us.

All Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at 42nd & Densmore and ride ongreenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please come by1:45 if you are new to riding in groups or if you need help with adjusting your helmet or bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques.

Spokespeople is on Facebook andTwitter–please follow us! And check out and subscribe to ourbeautiful new website and blog: www.spokespeople.us.

GREAT EASY RIDES in November

Nov 2: Oh Henry! Spokespeople Rides to Public Art. Wallingford 2-4pm.

Nov 3: Kidical Mass Fall Colors in the Arboretum. 11a-2p.

Nov 7: S.L.O.W. Ride to Wing Luke Museum. Central. 11a-1p.

Nov 16: S.L.O.W. Ride to Wing Luke Museum. Central 11a-1p.

Nov 16: Spokespeople Art Exploration. NE Seattle. 1-4pm.

MORE Spokespeople Events

See our calendar for more details on these November events.

Nov 1: Transportation Choices Coalition. Downtown. 12-1pm.

Nov 2: Oh Henry! Spokespeople Rides to Public Art. Wallingford 2-4pm.

Nov 3: Kidical Mass Fall Colors in the Arboretum. 11a-2p.

Nov 5: VOTE.

Nov 6: NACTO Urban Design Guidelines free webinar.12-1pm.

Nov 6: 23rd Ave Corridor Greenway SDOT Meeting. Central 5:30-7:30pm.

Nov 6: Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.

Nov 7: S.L.O.W. Ride to Wing Luke Museum. Central. 11a-1p.

Nov 7: Hot Ideas to Cool Seattle workshop. Pioneer Square. 6-8pm.

Nov 7: Parks Legacy Public Hearing. Central. 6-8pm.

Nov 11: Measuring Greenways Performance. Ballard.6:30-8:30pm.

Nov 12: Lake City Crosswalk Safety Action. 4:30-5:30pm.

Nov 12: Traffic Safety Meeting. Delridge. 5:30-6:30pm.

Nov 13: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.

Nov 14: Tunneling Toward a New State Route 99. UW 7-8:30pm.

Nov 16: S.L.O.W. Ride to Wing Luke Museum. Central 11a-1p.

Nov 16: Spokespeople Art Exploration. NE Seattle. 1-4pm.

Nov 17: Urban Wilderness Works Haiku Hike. Seward Park. 2-4:30pm.

Nov 19: Greenways technical book group. University.6-8pm.

Nov 20: Is there safety in numbers for walking & biking. Webinar. 12-1:15pm.

Nov 21: Seattle Parks Legacy Committee. 100 Dexter 6-8pm.

Nov 21: Ballard Greenways Community meeting.7:30pm.

Nov 25-8: Building Sustainable Communities workshop. Kelowna BC.

Nov 27: Regional Bike/Ped Advisory Committee. Downtown 10a-12p.

Spokespeople News November 2013

Halloween and biking

Next year we hope to have a few more streets that pass the “trick or treat test” thanks to greenways. Vancouver Planner Brent Toderian writes “Great neighbourhoods for trick-or-treating also tend to be great neighborhoods for families everyday: Tree-lined streets designed for walkers more than speeding cars.” Read more.

FamilyRide Madi writes, “Quite unintentionally, my kids’ Halloween costumes have mirrored improvements to Seattle bike infrastructure over the last few years.” You have got to see her photographs of her children as bike boxes and greenways!

Why we love Portland

Encouragement sign spotted on the crest of a hill in Portland. “You are almost at the top! You can do it!” We could use signs like these all over Seattle!

What happens when a city sets priorities for the city other than cars? Portland happens.

Author Jeff Speck gave a TED talk on some rules for building walkable, bikeable cities.

* Don’t bother building a biotech cluster, build a city people want to be in.

* The worst idea we’ve ever had is suburban sprawl. The automobile is an instrument of freedom – that has become a prison.

* 85% of the money we spend on driving leaves the local economy

* Young educated people are moving to Portland in droves.

* This healthcare crisis is a city design crisis. Inactivity born of our landscape.

* Living in a walkable neighborhood = quality of life and sustainability

* Numerous studies tie what you weigh to where you live.

* A good transportation lens considers economy, epidemiology, environmental.

While we are struggling with greenway costs in Seattle, we’ve seen that greenways can be inexpensive AND effective. Taking the Lane’s Elly Blue lays out why Portland’s entire All Ages & Abilities bike NETWORK costs LESSTHAN A MILE of freeway. Nice!

More Portland envy. New solar road markers light way for cyclists. This could work well to define pedestrian space on streets without sidewalks too.

Europe has reclaimed its streets with a thriving bike culture

Seattle is not Europe, but we can continue to be inspired by how the Europeans are building an amazing network of safe streets to bike on and seeing how that results in, surprise!, many people who choose to ride bicycles for everyday transportation.

In Almost Every European Country, Bikes Are Outselling New Cars says this NPR report. Is it a long-term trend or a reflection of recession?

Why is Denmark “World’s Happiest County“? Their government supports families, BIKING IS NORMAL, great health care, gender equality, shared mutual civic responsibility.

Groningen is a real – a bicycle city in the Netherlands we can all aspire to. Take 15 minutes with StreetFilms and be inspired. The people of Groningen decided to invest in infrastructure that removes conflicts. Bicycling becomes “a mode of transport that keeps you alive” and healthy.

A new movie called Bikes v. Cars: We are Many by the director Fredrik Gretten from Malmö, who made the documentary “Who Killed the Electric Car?” One of the interviewees says, “This is not a war. This is a city.”

Seattle can become a City of Bikes too. We just need to work together to make it a reality. Another Streetfilms will inspire you! 10 minutes watching this video will allow you to understand how the citizens of Amsterdam got the bike city they wanted

Clever new Västtrafik advertisement makes you want to ride the bus in Scandinavia. And that’s the whole idea! What’s a bike equivalent ad?

Fascinating! How Walk Signal Men portrayed worldwide. They include people on horseback, carrying guns, holding hands. Incredible variety.

Protected bike lanes are sprouting up all over Seattle

Seattle is making foray’s into protected bike lanes, aka cycle tracks.

KPLU has a story about the new lanes on Linden and Broadway.

Driveways are the enemy of the protected bike lane, Michael Anderson writes on recent trip to Vancouver BC.

Re-envisioning streets can be easy, cheap and super successful for all. Janette Sadik-Khan, New York City Traffic Commissioner explains in this TED talk video “New York’s streets? Not so mean any more”. Many of the streets in New York’s bike system are protected bike lanes.

No wonder NYC seeing a surge in biking this fall! Street Films follows people using nearly 400 miles of protected bike lanes & greenways.

What’s new in Seattle?

Warm welcome to newly-elected Cascade Bicycle Club Board members who all support safe streets for all ages & abilities! Merlin, Jessica, Catherine, Daniel, Don and George — we look forward to working with you at Spokespeople!

Familyride’s Madi Carlson (our webmaster btw) continues to evolve and improve her storytelling skills, her narrative photographs, and her biking ability. Her photo essays read like the epics they are. Madi bikes to the Northgate Malltrying out a half dozen different routes. Madi finishes the grueling Portland Disaster Relief Trials Madirides in the rain. Go Madi go!

Feet First has proposed a Healthy School Boundaries idea. We support their idea of adding walkability into school boundary decisions!

What fun! Spokespeople friends Barbara and Madi took their kids on a Happy 6th Birthday Bicycle Party ride!

Nice blog post on our walkable bike-able greenways by Dan Reed at Greater Greater Washington.

Houston Tomorrow proposes greenways using Seattle Neighborhood Greenways as a their model. Isn’t it seriously great that cities everywhere are waking up to the transportation potential of greenways?

People from non-profit Greenways groups are going to many City hearings to get funding for safer streets. At a recent Seattle City Council meeting, neighborhood heroes from Ballard Greenways,Beacon BIKES, Montlake Greenways, Greenwood-Phinney Greenways, West Seattle Bike Connections, Wallingford Greenways, and talked about more about why safe streets are a priority for them, their families, and their neighborhoods.

Queen Anne Greenways made aStrategic Plan for safer streets. It is a great community model for other communities that want safer healthier streets.

Love keeping kids safe? Crossing guard jobs open now.Share with people looking for a job! Work outside & make a difference for Safe Routes to School. BFDay, Greenwood, Viewlands, Loyal Heights, Bryant, Olympic View, McDonald, Stevens, Blaine, Coe, Queen Anne, Montlake, Thurgood Marshall. 206-252-0907 Yvonne Carpenter Seattle Public Schools

Fast and effective Seattle Department of Transportation response following Greenways Vigil Walk with Madison Park Greenways The crossing between Wells Fargo and Starbucks got a pedestrian crossing sign and speedy and quality work on five interim safety solutions (new paint on the crosswalk, painted buffer, red curb, better parking signs and median pedestrian sign).

An in-depth report at Seattle Times by Mike Lindblom on the Washington State Transportation Listening session in Seattle “Read their lips: Pass new taxes”

Merlin Rainwater is leading S.L.O.W. rides (Senior Ladies On Wheels). Traveling on Central Seattle Greenways, she has taken groups to Little Free Libraries, museums, tiny parks, treasure trays & P-Patches. See more of Merlin’s rides in our calendar.

Could we make crowd-funded bike lanes and safe street crossings in Seattle like they are doing in Memphis? It is another approach to build safer streets.

Feet First released a candidate survey. The questions reveal how candidates see safe streets for all. Answers are available from Mayor McGinn, Ed Murray, Sally Bagshaw, Mike O’Brien and many more. There are good questions on Safe Routes to School, Safe Routes to Transit. Read the complete survey here.

Trunk Show of Nau clothing at elegant bicycle haberdashery Hub & Bespoke had a raffle that benefitted Seattle Neighborhood Greenways. Thanks!

Bike Parking is a hot topic worldwide

Inventive Japanese kiosk stores 200 bicycles underground. We’ll need a few of these at new Sound Transit stations.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcZSU40RBrg

Portland just installed its 100th bike corral. Portland swapped 163 on-street car parking spaces for 1,644 bike spots! Bike corrals in Portland are really quite simple, elegant, effective and inexpensive: a set of big blue metal “staples” set two to three feet apart and protected from motorized vehicles by concrete blocks. It is WHERE the corrals are placed that is most interesting — in front of schools, shops, transit, and right next to crosswalks so that people walking have a bit more protection as they cross the street. Streetfilms even made a movie about the corrals.

Utrecht, NL models bike parking facility for 12,500 bikes. Imagine noise, size, smell of 12,500 cars. Imagine a quarter the fans arriving at Safeco field by bike. Another comparison — the contentious car parking garage slated for the Northgate Light Rail Station was for 400 motorized vehicles.

A few Spokespeople odds and ends

A new App we’ve been fooling around with. The Street Mix App tool can show you your street profile and help you to see if that sidewalk, tree, bus lane & cycletrack really can fit.

Spokespeople friend Adonia Lugo was recently hired to lead equity efforts at the Bike League. Adonia was the co-founder of LA’s City of Lights campaign reaching out to immigrant, day-laborer cyclists and the Biciculturesresearch network.

Strong Towns Charles Marohn talks about the value of transit, walking, biking. The biggest question: How will we pay for what we propose to build?

Two ways you can help with safer streets: Neighbors for Road Safety and Green Streets to Parks

Neighbors for Road Safety Be a good neighbor. Sign up now as a Neighbor for Road Safety.http://www.seattle.gov/besupersafe/nfrs/ Mayor Mike McGinn and the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) are launching a new community program to increase road safety in every corner of Seattle. Think of Neighbors for Road Safety program as a Master Gardener program for safer streets. We’ve been asked many questions about this new program. “Should just one person from my neighborhood sign up?” “What will I learn?” “What will I need to do?” The answers are: Yes, multiple people from your neighborhood could and should sign up. You will start to learn more about the complex art and science of road safety. And you will need to commit to help out a bit and share what you learn in whatever corner of Seattle you call your community.

With your help as an interested neighbor, you’ll learn more about critical road safety issues (it is a complex topic), you’ll learn how to communicate safety information, and you’ll get localized road safety information for your neighborhood. The expectation by the City is for you to be a local street safety champion in your neighborhood. As a “Master Roader” your name will be listed as a partner in this program when launched, you will receive localized information regarding road safety in your neighborhood, and you agree to help distribute this information to neighbors, in partnership with SDOT. We think this is a great way to further our mission of safer streets throughout Seattle.

Green Streets to Parks We all deserve safe and comfortable access to our public parks. It’s a sad fact however that people throughout Seattle are often separated from their favorite parks by dangerous roads and street crossings. Think about how difficult it is to cross the street to Woodland Park, Gasworks Park, even Green Lake.

We envision a Seattle parks system where our kids can safely bike to and through parks for fun or simply to get home. We envision a Seattle parks system where grandparents can safely walk to and through our parks as they enjoy staying active or to pick up a quart of milk from the grocery store. Do you share our vision? Then join us in creating equitable access to our park system! YOU can help: do your part to speak up for safe access to parks for all!

What: Tell your story about how you and your friends and family would like better access to your favorite park at the Parks Legacy Public Hearing.

When: Thursday, November 7th at 5:30 pm

Where: Miller Community Center330 19th Ave E

Contact: Gordon Padelford (206) 963-8547 or gordon <at>seattlegreenways.org to coordinate with a common message for Seattle Neighborhood Greenways to parks and to stay involved with this campaign of Green Streets to Parks.

What’s the best way to improve safety for people who walk & bike?

A surprisingly simple solution according to noted Active Transporation Professor John Pucher:

“Motor vehicles impose the most serious traffic dangers to cyclists,” explains Pucher.

“You’ve got to reduce motor vehicles speeds on shared roadways and provide physical separation of cyclists from motor vehicle traffic on arterials. You also have to restrict car use by implementing car-free zones, traffic-calmed residential neighborhoods, and lowering car speeds on city streets. This is crucial to increasing both cyclist and pedestrian safety.”

Thank you Bicycle Alliance of Washington and Cascade Bicycle Club for your work on statewide bicycle transportation issues.

And a final note…

Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia.?-H.G. Wells

Nuts and Bolts for Spokespeople Rides

Expert commuters, please join us. We need you! As our rides grow larger, we welcome good bicyclists like you who can offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques for new, returning and reluctant cyclists. This is a Bike Smart Seattle ride. All ages and skill levels are welcome. All Spokespeople rides are led by Cascade Bicycle Clubcertified ride leaders.

Contact information

If you want more information about this ride or aboutSpokespeople, please contact us!

Keep happy and keep pedaling!

Our Fantastic Spokespeople Ride Leaders:

• Cathy Tuttle(206)547-9569/(206)713-6269cathy.tuttle[at]gmail.com(Wallingford Spokespeople)

• Michael Herschensohn(206)412-0702mh982501[at]gmail.com(Queen Anne Spokespeople)

• Michael Snyder(206)781-7221msnyder[at]zserf.com(Ballard Spokespeople and the Cascade Bike Club Board)

• Madi Carlson (206) 612-4970madidotcom[at]gmail.com

• Merlin Rainwater(206) 769-6549merlinrain[at]gmail.com

• Stu Hennessey(206)938-3322alkistu[at]hotmail.com (West Seattle Spokespeople)

• Robin Randels (206) 446-7457rkrandels[at]comcast.net

• Al Miller (206)697-4603amiller7x7[at]comcast.net(NE Spokespeople)

And our other leaders Cindy Riskin, Lee LeCroix, William Gerdes, Denny Kerr, Jim Mathieu, Norm Tjaden, Mark Davison, Sander Lazar (Ravenna Bryant Spokespeople), Scott, Bill, and even more people who help out whenever you can. Thank you.

facebook.com/spokespeople?twitter.com/spokespeople

Spokespeople rides on the 1st Saturday of every month (since March 2007) linking people through neighborhoods along secure bike routes. Article in Worldchanging on Spokespeople.

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Spokespeople Rides Oct 5 to Craftsman Homes in Ravenna Park http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/october-2013/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/october-2013/#comments Fri, 04 Oct 2013 17:43:43 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=845 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Be Super SafeSaturday, October 5, is going to be a great day for a ride! Don’t forget your sunscreen. We’ll meet on Densmore and 42nd in Wallingford and leave at 2 p.m. for a favorite ride!

Oct 5 Craftsman Homes of Ravenna Park. Join restoration architect Larry Johnson of TJP on a tour of historic homes. We’ll travel along Greenways in Wallingford and proposed Greenways in Northeast Seattle on an easy ride to the historic Ravenna Park neighborhood. Noted architectural historian, president of the Queen Anne Historical Society, and former MOHAI Director Michael Herschensohn will also join us and provide commentary.

Ride details on the Cascade website.

Nov 2 Oh Henry! Public Art you can see along the Burke Gilman Trail or nearby. From the Canal Street substation in Fremont to the Wall of Death in the U-District, we’ll show how public art is integrated into our daily lives and adds value without our necessarily knowing it is there. Architectural Historian Michael Herschensohn is developing the tour with staff from Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture.

Please subscribe to our monthly newsletter-SUBSCRIBE to by clicking here!

To see what our rides are like, photos of past rides are on Facebook or on www.spokespeople.us.

All Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at 42nd & Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please come by 1:45 if you are new to riding in groups or if you need help with adjusting your helmet or bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques.

Spokespeople is on Facebook and Twitter–please follow us! And check out and subscribe to our beautiful new website and blog: www.spokespeople.us.

I care about Cascade Bicycle Club and hope you do too. If you are a member of this organization, I wanted to let you know that online voting for the Cascade Bicycle Club Board of Directors closes at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, October 8. As a local leader passionate about building safe, pleasant streets in Seattle, I want to share my recommendations because Cascade IS the big transportation powerhouse in Seattle. Who sits on the Cascade Board will influence how we will get investments in safer streets for people who bike over the next five years. There are eight candidates for six positions.

My three recommendations:

1. Daniel Weise is the current Cascade Board President. Daniel has been diligent in building a Board that supports local advocacy for safer streets and family-friendly biking. He has also been instrumental in building Cascade Bike Club as an organization that supports active transportation. Daniel’s support of local climate action groups wins my approval as well.

2. Merlin Rainwater is a new member of the Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board, and a hardworking member of Central Seattle Greenways. Merlin has spearheaded citywide Greenways efforts in Safe Routes to Health, and has been a tireless advocate for bicycle parking and providing directions in online corporate websites in her “Transportation Nag” blog. She is outstanding to work with and will bring a great perspective to the Cascade Board.

3. Jessica Szelag is the new chair of the Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board, and the acting Executive Director of Commute Seattle. I’ve worked with Jessica on several projects, including the startup of Greenwood-Phinney Greenways, and she is always on-message, a good listener, and decisive. A great set of skills for being on the Cascade Board.

I’ve met and like others who are running for the Cascade Board, but I wanted to share my perspective on the people I know and have worked well with. You can get more information about voting for Cascade Bike Club Board members here.

Spokespeople Events October 2013

See our calendar for more details on these October events.

  • Oct 1: October is Walk to Work and School Month.
  • Oct 2: Transportation Choices Coalition Summit. Downtown 2-4pm.
  • Oct 2: Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • Oct 3: Making Density Palatable. Downtown 4-6pm.
  • Oct 3: Parks Legacy Committee. Belltown 6-8pm.
  • Oct 5: Spokespeople Wallingford Rides Historic Ravenna 2-4pm.
  • Oct 5: Start of Coffeeneuring weekend java rides.
  • Oct 7: Hot Ideas to Cool Seattle. City Hall 5:30-8pm.
  • Oct 8: Cascade Bike Club Annual Meeting. REI 6-8pm.
  • Oct 9: International Walk to School Day
  • Oct 9: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • Oct 9: Maple Leaf Greenways Community meeting 7:30pm.
  • Oct 13: Take a Walk on the West Side of Queen Anne. 2-4pm.
  • Oct 14: WA State Senate Transportation listening session. Downtown 6-9pm.
  • Oct 17: Ballard Greenways Community meeting. 7:30pm.
  • Oct 17: Ballard Greenways Community meeting. 7:30pm.
  • Oct 19: How to Train Your Bike Train. Magnusson Park 10a-12p.
  • Oct 20-23: Rail-Volution. Downtown.
  • Oct 22: Queen Anne Greenways Community meeting 6:30pm.
  • Oct 23: Regional Bike/Ped Advisory Committee. Downtown 10a-12p.
  • Oct 23: 21st Century Cities: Building Sustainable Futures. Town Hall 7:30pm.
  • Oct 24: City Budget Public Hearing. Garfield High School. 6-8pm.
  • Oct 25: Applications due to SDOT for $1000 Safe Schools grants.
  • Oct 31: Trick or Treat on your Greenway!

Spokespeople News September 2013

Bikes are the new sexy. Check out the seriously lovely photos with this essay about how young people are abandoning soul-deadening suburbs to enjoy car-free lives in the city. The auto-industry has made embarrassing attempts to brand transit and bikes as uncool. Such attempts have predictably back-fired. It’s not just that cars aren’t cool any more. Bikes are the new sexy.

Local news

Ballard Greenway Opens. Last month’s Spokespeople ride to the Grand Opening of Ballard Greenway brought out a dozen Spokespeople and Kidical Mass brought almost 50 riders!! Ballard Neighborhood Greenway bike counts skyrocketed after greenway opened! The Mayor cut the ribbon. Traffic Engineer Dongho made smoothies! What a fantastic day!

14th Ave NW will be a new street for people as it crosses the Ballard Greenway.

Lake City Greenways work party brought out 60 people and 25 goats, who turned tail and didn’t want to Join the herd. Kids (of the human variety) who had come to see goats had fun playing in the dirt and helping out with the work. The sun came out! S dependable goat rental concern will help at future work parties.

Queen Anne Greenways plans opening party for a new traffic signal! It links up a safe route around the Crown of Queen Anne.

Michael Herschensohn wrote a little poem:

When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you
LIGHT’S UP!

Can you believe it?
Maybe it pays to ride in the rain!
Six days until flashing yellow goes away and light is operative. Just waiting for stop line halfway down the block.
Installers complained about the dangers of working at the intersection! Everyone is happy.

Fund started for 15-year-old Trevon Crease-Holden. Seattle Neighborhood Greenways held a Vigil Walk in August with his family, community & Bike Works. Trevon was the victim of a tragic hit and run pedestrian incident on MLK in SE Seattle in July and is still recovering from critical injuries. The family has set up a fund to help with Trevon’s medical care and their family needs. Our thoughts are with Trevon, his mother Quianna, and all who love and care for this family at this difficult time. Thank you to all of you for caring about SE Seattle and working toward safer, healthier streets for everyone.

Rainier Ave S tops the sad list of residential/commercial streets with traffic fatalities in Seattle.

Safe Routes to School Mini Grant Program APPLY 10/25 Among other things, this grant can fund a biking or walking train, Undriving Station, crossing flags, repainting a crosswalk, or (news to us) creating a walk/bike to school map through school community meetings. Local Schools can fund small safety improvement programs or very small infrastructure improvements. The grant is quick, easy, nearly always successful in getting funding, and does not require a match. More importantly, even this small grant can make a big impact helping children safely walk and bike to school. Your group can do this!

Madison Park held a Vigil Walk for a man walking injured by another man riding a bike. The news media turned out and work is starting for a new crosswalk!

Bike & Truck Safety Fair. The Port and Puget Sound Regional Council held a morning hands-on workshop for people driving trucks see from a bike rider’s perspective and bike riders to experience how hard it is to stop and see from a big rig. Video.

Beacon BIKES has a survey for kids/parents who travel on Beacon Hill.
Know any? Ask them to test their street knowledge on this 7-question survey!

Vulnerable User Law passed in Washington State in 2011 after 3 years of hard work by Bicycle Alliance and Cascade Bike Club.

Unfortunately, enforcing it is still not happening.

Local Money & Politics

City Budget Season. If you plan to testify, make sure you let Seattle City Council know you support greenways that link us to places we want to go! Give Council specific examples of how streets you know could be safer places for people who walk and bike, as well as healthy places in your community. We’ve put the City Transportation budget on our website for your easy access. You can send written comments to Council@Seattle.gov, or go to the Public Hearing on October 24 6pm at Garfield HS.

Safety. Is it time for us to have an honest conversation about using our phones while we drive?

Seattle passes Urban Forestry Stewardship Plan. It is time to Green some Greenways.

In the war on cars in Seattle, bikes and pedestrians are winning as Seattle has become one of only five major cities in the nation where more than 50 percent of the commuters don’t drive solo to work. So how are Seattle workers getting there? The real sea change in commute patterns around here is in, believe it or not, bicycling to work (up 152 percent since 2000, to 15,000), working at home (up 76 percent, to 26,000) and old-fashioned hoofing it (up 56 percent, to 36,000). City leaders haven’t been obsessed with bikes or pedestrians enough.

New projects funded in Seattle for pedestrian & safe streets improvement projects with Bridging the Gap money.

Mayor McGinn proposes even more money–$14 million!–for safer streets!

Local Sightline guru Alan Durning is passionate about too much parking. He studies why we devote so much public space to car storage.

Great street ideas

Aging on Greenways. People who want to age in place need to easily travel without a car within a 10-block radius of their dwelling. Greenways and safe street crossings are needed!

Low cost + significant impact are the buzzwords for how we want to invest in our infrastructure. How do we set realistic priorities? In medicine, we vaccinate people for pennies and we end up not having to pay later to treat them for a terrible virus. Easy money. Streets can be easy to build and cost little to maintain as well. “We need to make these decisions at a level of community where people know their neighbor and have to look each other in the eye.”

McKinsey Global Consultants have similar advice for Mayors to “Achieve smart growth–Do more with less–Win support for change.” Video

We are committed to a 1950′s approach to transportation which we fund with 1990′s wishful thinking. We won’t get the economic results we want from our transportation investments unless we start asking a different set of questions. The toughest among them, and perhaps most critical, will be deciding what parts of our current system are no longer worth maintaining.

Lessons for leaders with EcoDensity and active transporation. Brent Toderian shows off Vancouver to Helsinki.

Put people first in Seattle with safe and frequent crosswalks for people walking and biking.

Urban thoroughfares can now have safer 10 or 11-foot lanes. That keeps cars moving slower than in traditional 12 to 14-foot lanes. NACTO & ITE/CNU guides were approved by Federal government before it shut down.

Bicycle inspiration

Be Super SafeActive Ballard Greenways leader Bob Hall is ready for cool weather commuting with new bike coffee holder & rain basket.

The Dutch inspire us by carrying ladders, passengers, biking with dogs–on infrastructure that supports them.

Food & Wine magazine article on Bike Food Carts!

Spokespeople, Bike Blog, Pedal-Stretch-Breathe, and Greenways went out for PARK(ing) Day and visited about half of the 40 PARK(ing) spots in Seattle. Lots of fabulous places including paint your own art student, mini golf, a pop-up cycle track, and an urban forest walk. My personal highlight had to be meeting the Ballard muralist Henry on the street outside Seattle Art Museum.

A bike ride we can all drink to! Coffeeneuring Challenge starts Oct 5. It is perfect for dark wet Seattle weekends.

What’s the best way to improve safety for people who walk & bike?

A surprisingly simple solution according to noted Active Transporation Professor John Pucher:

“Motor vehicles impose the most serious traffic dangers to cyclists,” explains Pucher.

“You’ve got to reduce motor vehicles speeds on shared roadways and provide physical separation of cyclists from motor vehicle traffic on arterials. You also have to restrict car use by implementing car-free zones, traffic-calmed residential neighborhoods, and lowering car speeds on city streets. This is crucial to increasing both cyclist and pedestrian safety.”

Thank you Bicycle Alliance of Washington and Cascade Bicycle Club for your work on statewide bicycle transportation issues.

And a final note…

Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia.
-H.G. Wells

Nuts and Bolts for Spokespeople Rides

Expert commuters, please join us. We need you! As our rides grow larger, we welcome good bicyclists like you who can offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques for new, returning and reluctant cyclists. This is a Bike Smart Seattle ride. All ages and skill levels are welcome. All Spokespeople rides are led by Cascade Bicycle Club certified ride leaders.

Contact information

If you want more information about this ride or about Spokespeople, please contact us!

Keep happy and keep pedaling!

Our Fantastic Spokespeople Ride Leaders:

  • Cathy Tuttle (206)547-9569/(206)713-6269 cathy.tuttle[at]gmail.com (Wallingford Spokespeople)
  • Michael Herschensohn (206)412-0702 mh982501[at]gmail.com (Queen Anne Spokespeople)
  • Michael Snyder (206)781-7221 msnyder[at]zserf.com (Ballard Spokespeople and the Cascade Bike Club Board)
  • Madi Carlson (206) 612-4970 madidotcom[at]gmail.com
  • Merlin Rainwater (206) 769-6549 merlinrain[at]gmail.com
  • Stu Hennessey (206)938-3322 alkistu[at]hotmail.com (West Seattle Spokespeople)
  • Robin Randels (206) 446-7457 rkrandels[at]comcast.net
  • Al Miller (206)697-4603 amiller7x7[at]comcast.net (NE Spokespeople)

And our other leaders Cindy Riskin, Lee LeCroix, William Gerdes, Denny Kerr, Jim Mathieu, Norm Tjaden, Mark Davison, Sander Lazar (Ravenna Bryant Spokespeople), Scott, Bill, and even more people who help out whenever you can. Thank you.

facebook.com/spokespeople
twitter.com/spokespeople

Spokespeople rides on the 1st Saturday of every month (since March 2007) linking people through neighborhoods along secure bike routes. Article in Worldchanging on Spokespeople.

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Spokespeople and Kidical Mass Go to Ballard Greenway Grand Opening Sat Sept 7 http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/september-2013/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/september-2013/#comments Fri, 06 Sep 2013 18:11:17 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=836 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride


Saturday, September 7, is going to be a great day for a ride! Don’t forget your sunscreen. We’ll meet on Densmore and 42nd in Wallingford and leave at 2 p.m. for the Grand Opening of the Ballard Greenway!

AND, we’ll be meeting up with Madi Carlson and her Kidical Mass group who also going to the Grand Opening of the Ballard Greenway. Madi’s shorter ride leaves at 1 p.m. from the new Ballard Library.

Please subscribe to our monthly newsletter-SUBSCRIBE to by clicking here!

To see what our rides are like, photos of past rides are on Facebook or on www.spokespeople.us.

All Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at 42nd & Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please come by 1:45 if you are new to riding in groups or if you need help with adjusting your helmet or bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques.

Spokespeople is on Facebook and Twitter–please follow us! And check out and subscribe to our beautiful new website and blog: www.spokespeople.us.

Other Events

See our calendar for more details on these September events.

  • Sept 1: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6pm.
  • Sept 4: Seattle Police SDOT Traffic training. NE Public Library 6:30-7:30pm.
  • Sept 7: Kidical Mass Ride to Ballard Greenway Opening. 1-4pm.
  • Sept 7: Ballard Greenway Grand Opening. 2-5pm.
  • Sept 7: Spokespeople Wallingford Rides Ballard Greenways Grand Opening 2-4pm.
  • Sept 11: Maple Leaf Greenways monthly meeting 7:30pm.
  • Sept 14: Ride Seattle Center to South Park Fiestas Patrias w the Mayor. 8:30a-3p.
  • Sept 14: Walk2More Tours. Various Beacon/Rainier Valley. 10a-12p.
  • Sept 14: Kirkland Greenways Bike Tour. 1-3pm.
  • Sept 15: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • Sept 17: Rainier Valley Greenways Community Meeting. Bike Works Columbia City 6:30-8pm.
  • Sept 18: Walk & Roll. Seward Park 10-11am.
  • Sept 20: Park(ing) Day. Citywide exhibit/events. 9a-3p.
  • Sept 21: Lake City Greenways park restoration w goats. 10a-4p.
  • Sept 22: Designing for community health lecture. Downtown 10a-1p.
  • Sept 22: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • Sept 24: Queen Anne Greenways monthly meeting. 6:30-7:45pm.
  • Sept 25: Rainier Valley Greenways Community Ride audit. Columbia City 6-8pm.
  • Sept 26: Mayoral Forum on Public Space & Parks. Downtown 5:30-8pm.
  • Oct 1: October is Walk to Work and School Month.

October and November’s Spokespeople rides are so exciting! You need to get them on your calendar now!

Oct 5 Craftsman Homes of Ravenna Park. Join restoration architect Larry Johnson of TJP on a tour of historic homes. We’ll travel along Greenways in Wallingford and proposed Greenways in Northeast Seattle on an easy ride to the historic Ravenna Park neighborhood. Noted architectural historian, president of the Queen Anne Historical Society, and former MOHAI Director Michael Herschensohn will also join us and provide commentary.

Nov 2 Oh Henry! Public Art you can see along the Burke Gilman Trail or nearby. From the Canal Street substation in Fremont to the Wall of Death in the U-District, we’ll show how public art is integrated into our daily lives and adds value without our necessarily knowing it is there. Architectural Historian Michael Herschensohn is developing the tour with staff from Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture.

Spokespeople News September 2013

Many of the bits and pieces of news clips in this month’s newsletter are about how people around the world, in cities around the US, and in Seattle are waking up to the possibility of using streets as our largest and most flexible public space. People are beginning to question why we have given over 25 to 35% of every city to moving and parking cars, not people.

I believe strongly in the possibility of a city, indeed in the possibility of a world, filled with streets that are safe and pleasant for people happening soon.

Seattle

Greenwood-Phinney Pop-Up Greenway is a creative way to try out greenways in your neighborhood

Bicycle improvements are happening quickly in Seattle!

We’re looking forward to a productive partnership with Cascade Bicycle Club’s new Executive Director Elizabeth Kiker! Thanks Joe Platzner, interim ED for your great support for bike advocacy!

Mt Baker stairway walk featured 8/30 Friday 6:35 & 8:35 AM on @KPLU 88.1 FM “Tourist in Your Own Town” segment. And did you know Seattle is blessed with over 650 stairways?

Seattle Help Wanted

Other areas

Riding a Bike

  • Bike Commuting Stats by the numbers.
  • The AMAZING INSPIRATIONAL Emily from Portland @1lessgmsuburban on a ride to raise money for ADHD writes: Before Sunday I had never biked more than 26 miles and never left the city of Portland except by plane. Haven’t seen the Pacific Ocean since I was 12. I’ve always wondered what my limits were, bikewise. Now I know: I can ride a 220 lb bike 63 miles a day and climb 3,000 feet. Not to brag or nuthin. Plus, I got to see the ocean! Yah, yah, I know… It’s a sound. Shaddup.
  • Creative use of bicycle-powered elevator–heavy going up, fun going down!

Bicycle Infrastructure

  • When a cyclist is hit by a car, a helmet may save their life BUT it’s not the helmet that causes the collision. Nor is it the LACK of a helmet that causes collisions when it happens to a cyclist without a helmet. The cause of the collision is usually the condition of the road and the actions or inattentiveness of the driver of the car. To even imply that the reason a cyclist who is HIT BY A CAR is hurt because they didn’t have a piece of plastic on their head is ABSURD. The issue here is the safety of our roads, NOT what we choose (or don’t choose) to wear.
  • “Women on a Roll” Showcases Power & Potential of Female Bicyclists
  • Widen Main Street? A community Had Other Ideas, and Thrived “If you build a place for cars, it will be a gathering place for cars. If it’s built for people, it will be a gathering place for people.”
  • No new roads. No new car parking. No new public debt. What it means to STOP building and start healing. Any city that wants to be financially strong and healthy needs to stop making investments that cost more over the long term to service and maintain than they generate in wealth. They need to stop accepting grant funding or “donated” infrastructure that they ultimately will not be able to sustain.
  • Take back your streets! @NACTO4cities Janette Sadik-Khan: Streets have been in suspended animation for 50 years. They haven’t changed because our streets have been seen as a way to get cars from point A to point B. Streets are cities most valuable resource. The NY City Transportation Department is the city’s largest real estate developer but we haven’t seen ourselves that way. The design guidance for cities is 50 years old, written for more rural America. The goal of cities is not about getting cars as fast as possible through the middle, it is to adapt to a complex series of ways of getting around A third of New Yorkers get around by walking, a third with transit, a third with cars, so we need a balanced approach to transportation. The new NACTO street design guide launching this September is a big permission slip for cities to use with their engineers to make changes they want to see but have not been formally written about.
  • The Shortest Distance Between Two Points Should be the Bike Route. To encourage cycling, bicycle routes should be as short as possible. Shorter routes require less effort and make cycling competitive with driving for a greater number of trips. Exposure to rain, heat, snow and cold is also less for shorter trips. Direct routes that avoid turns are more obvious.
  • Of course people want bike safety. But they want other things, too. When bike professionals make safety their only absolute value, they presume that physical safety is the most important value in people’s lives. And that assumption is demonstrably false. A restaurant doesn’t measure its success by the percentage of people who dine there without getting sick. It measures success by the number of people who come in the door, how much they pay and how often they return. A public transit line isn’t funded by the federal government based on its anticipated vehicle failure rate. It’s funded based on the number of people who are expected to use it. I’m not arguing that safety is unimportant. Obviously nonprofessionals are imperfect judges of whether a particular lane or intersection is safe, and cities must work carefully to design good, safe intersections with few bike-car conflicts.

Politics determines how investments are made in safe streets for people

Seattle is a leader in the Renaissance of family-biking

What’s the best way to improve safety for people who walk & bike?

A surprisingly simple solution according to noted Active Transporation Professor John Pucher:

“Motor vehicles impose the most serious traffic dangers to cyclists,” explains Pucher.

“You’ve got to reduce motor vehicles speeds on shared roadways and provide physical separation of cyclists from motor vehicle traffic on arterials. You also have to restrict car use by implementing car-free zones, traffic-calmed residential neighborhoods, and lowering car speeds on city streets. This is crucial to increasing both cyclist and pedestrian safety.”

Thank you Bicycle Alliance of Washington and Cascade Bicycle Club for your work on statewide bicycle transportation issues.

And a final note…

Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia.
-H.G. Wells

Nuts and Bolts for Spokespeople Rides

Expert commuters, please join us. We need you! As our rides grow larger, we welcome good bicyclists like you who can offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques for new, returning and reluctant cyclists. This is a Bike Smart Seattle ride. All ages and skill levels are welcome. All Spokespeople rides are led by Cascade Bicycle Club certified ride leaders.

Contact information

If you want more information about this ride or about Spokespeople, please contact us!

Keep happy and keep pedaling!

Our Fantastic Spokespeople Ride Leaders:

  • Cathy Tuttle (206)547-9569/(206)713-6269 cathy.tuttle[at]gmail.com (Wallingford Spokespeople)
  • Michael Snyder (206)781-7221 msnyder[at]zserf.com (Ballard Spokespeople and the Cascade Bike Club Board)
  • Madi Carlson (206) 612-4970 madidotcom[at]gmail.com
  • Michael Herschensohn (206)412-0702 mh982501[at]gmail.com (Queen Anne Spokespeople)
  • Stu Hennessey (206)938-3322 alkistu[at]hotmail.com (West Seattle Spokespeople)
  • Robin Randels (206) 446-7457 rkrandels[at]comcast.net
  • Al Miller (206)697-4603 amiller7x7[at]comcast.net (NE Spokespeople)

And our other leaders Cindy Riskin, Lee LeCroix, William Gerdes, Denny Kerr, Jim Mathieu, Norm Tjaden, Mark Davison, Sander Lazar (Ravenna Bryant Spokespeople), Scott, Bill, and even more people who help out whenever you can. Thank you.

facebook.com/spokespeople
twitter.com/spokespeople

Spokespeople rides on the 1st Saturday of every month (since March 2007) linking people through neighborhoods along secure bike routes. Article in Worldchanging on Spokespeople.

]]>
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Spokespeople Rides August 3 Newsletter http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/august-2013/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/august-2013/#comments Wed, 31 Jul 2013 05:57:42 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=826 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Saturday, August 3, is going to be a great day for a ride. Don’t forget your sunscreen. We’ll meet on Densmore and 42nd in Wallingford and leave at 2 p.m. We’ll bring kites and cupcakes and roll down the hill from Wallingford to Kite Hill in Gasworks Park. Bring whatever you’d like to drink (and your kite if you have one) for a fun-filled family-friendly meetup. We’ll meet Spokespeople friends for our annual NE Seattle Spokespeople picnic (Spokespeople NE will leave at 1:30pm from Hunter Tree Farm).

Please subscribe to our monthly newsletter-SUBSCRIBE to by clicking here!

To see what our rides are like, photos of past rides are on Facebook or on www.spokespeople.us. The Spokespeople Ride to Heritage Trees and scenic views of Wallingford on June 4 was without a doubt the most absolutely stunning ride we’ve done. Photos from that ride are attached.

All Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at 42nd & Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please come by 1:45 if you are new to riding in groups or if you need help with adjusting your helmet or bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques.

Spokespeople is on Facebook and Twitter–please follow us! And check out and subscribe to our beautiful new website and blog: www.spokespeople.us.

Other Events

See our calendar for more details on these August events.

  • July 30: Spoke & Food. All over Seattle Benefit for Bike Works 5-10pm.
  • August 3: Spokespeople Rides to Gasworks Park 2-4pm.
  • August 5: Rainier Valley Greenways meeting 6:30-8:30pm.
  • August 7: Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • August 8: Green Lake Greenways Ride 6-7:30pm.
  • August 9-August 30: Greenwood Phinney Greenways Pop-up Greenway.
  • August 9: PhinneyWood Summer Streets 6-10pm.
  • August 10: P-patches & Greenways: How Seattle Rolls tour 12:30-5:30pm.
  • August 11: Walk Uptown Queen Anne 1:30-3:30pm.
  • August 13: Big Green Community Festival & Picnic. NE Seattle 5:30-9pm.
  • August 14: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • August 14: Maple Leaf Greenways monthly meeting 7:30pm.
  • August 15: Ballard Greenways monthly meeting7:30pm.
  • August 17: Mt. Baker Stairway Walk 10a-12p.
  • August 17: Rainier Summer Streets 11a-4p.
  • August 17: Feet First Outdoor Movie 8:30-11pm.
  • August 24: African American Community Walks. Central District 5-7pm.
  • August 25: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • August 28: PSRC Pedestrian Bicycle Advisory Board. Downtown 10a-12p.
  • Sept 1: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.

Spokespeople News August 2013

I’ve been running monthly Spokespeople Rides since March 2007. Since 2007, I’ve been joined by thousands of active volunteers in both Spokespeople and Seattle Neighborhood Greenways. I started Spokespeople right after returning from a year Sweden. In Sweden, I saw how streets could be places for people. I saw active street cafes, people walking to do their grocery shopping, 3rd graders walking and biking with friends to school, and reliable connected transit. I wanted to have all of these things in Seattle. I believed change was possible and desirable and safe streets were something worth fighting for. Walking and biking made me healthier too–I weighed a whole lot less when I walked and biked everywhere in Sweden!

Back in 2007, the first version of the Bicycle Master Plan had just been approved. I was not alone in protesting the Plan’s emphasis on sharrows and bike lanes in the door zone. As a timid “willing but wary” cyclist, I felt afraid to bike most places in Seattle. Of the 158 miles of bike “infrastructure” that have been added in Seattle since 2007, 53 miles are bike lanes (mostly in the door zone) and 91 miles are sharrows. Back in 2007, the Cascade Bicycle Club, the Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board (SBAB), and the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) were vociferous in supporting investments in bike lanes that I would only use fearfully, my children would never use, and I could not use as I got older and less able.

Because of the focused and strong advocacy work of many of us, Cascade Bicycle Club, SBAB, and SDOT are now strong supporters of family-friendly, “All Ages and Abilities” bike lanes. We have many more women and parents in these organizations. We have a new Bicycle Master Plan that supports building “low stress” bike lanes. I could not be happier. I believe with continued strong support of these groups and others that there is more potential for getting the bike lanes and greenways we need.

There is still a lot to do. Remember in Sweden I saw active street cafes, people walking to do their grocery shopping, 3rd graders walking and biking with friends to school, and reliable connected transit? Really none of these are part our Bike Master Plan but they are all essential elements of healthy, connected streets, and streets as public places for people.

I have been writing a monthly Spokespeople newsletter since March 2007 with news from all over the world. I have seen a huge change worldwide in the past year as many people wake up to the potential of the places they live. Many of the bits and pieces of news clips that I have in this month’s newsletter are about how people around the world, in cities around the US, and in Seattle are waking up to the possibility of using streets as our largest and most flexible public space. People are beginning to question why we have given over 25 to 35% of every city to cars and roads, not people.

I believe strongly in the possibility of a city, indeed in the possibility of a world, filled with streets that are safe and pleasant for people. I hope you continue to learn more and make this your vision as well in whatever way you can.

A great many of the examples of safe and healthy streets we’d like to see in Seattle are already in practice in northern Europe and nearby in Portland and Vancouver BC.

Portland

  • New Portland Transportation Director Leah Treat was interviewed by BikePortland. Her top priority is safety that “starts with pedestrians because everyone is a pedestrian.”
  • The Doubletree Hotel in Portland dumped a vendor whose truck blocked bike lane. “The buffered bike lane needs more physical separation, more of those concrete planters, for example, or more plastic posts. The fact a truck this large is able to park in the bike lane indicates a serious design flaw, in my opinion.”
  • Watch how Portlanders reclaim gray streets as community space. A program with City Repair cuts through red tape to paint red roses! Video.
  • A large staff at Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) lead events to encourage & educate people to try active transportation. I wish we supported more of this in Seattle!
  • Absolutely beautiful street paintings are happening in Portland. Here are some Greg Raisman photos of a Portland rose.

Vancouver BC

Great interactive map of how our neighbor to the north is becoming the world’s Greenest City.

Northern Europe

Holland really is the gold standard of safe streets

Politics determines how investments are made in safe streets for people

  • Mayoral race in NYC focuses on livable streets. People are voting with their feet, they’re voting with their pedals, and they’re voting with their dollars.
  • Supporting people who bike has become politically popular. Vancouver BC Mayor Gregor Robertson boasts of “an unprecedented positive shift to sustainable transportation” including many more women & girls on bikes!
  • We share a dream with Copenhagen. “It gives me hope to know that there are places in the world where human beings live–and live well–without cars at the center of everything. Copenhagen was transformed back in 2007-2008 by a visionary mayor who had the guts to push revitalization that put people above auto capacity. That large reduction in auto traffic is key to understanding success. Fewer cars means more space, less noise, better air quality, and a safer, comfortable environment that fosters more business and social interactions. One thing it doesn’t mean is a lack of economic vibrancy. In fact, the opposite is true.”

Tactical Urbanism is defined as improving city livability with small activities that take back the streets and induce long term changes in towns: Think street painting, sandboxes, urban gardens, tree planting. More and more people are “reclaiming” streets this way. It is becoming endemic.

  • Seattle City Traffic Engineer Dongho Chang made an extra effort to make sure the protected bike lane that suddenly appeared one night was replaced soon after with a lane that met traffic standards in the same location.
  • Essentially, people take it on themselves to make changes to traffic infrastructure by doing things like installing traffic signs or curb bump-outs without city oversight. This is happening in Canada.
  • And a recent rash of guerrilla-art sidewalk crossings and bike lanes popping up during late-night painting parties around the city has prompted Tacoma officials to take notice.
  • How the Dutch got their cycle paths. The Netherlands safe streets infrastructure was not created by the wave of a magic wand. It was the result of a lot of hard work, including massive street protests, very deliberate political decision-making and tactical urbanism. “The Netherlands’ problems were and are not unique. Their solutions shouldn’t be that either.” Video.
  • People are trying to make their streets safer. Sometimes they get charged with vandalism.
  • We have lost most public spaces of the city without knowing it. Here are some more examples of global actions reclaim it.

An American non-profit group started the Green Lane Project to lend political support to safe bike lane plans. Here are some thoughtful projects by the group:

Safety

  • What makes biking safe? An Oregon research study finds bike lanes matter less than speed in reducing severity of crashes. Conclusion: move away from striping bike lanes to building more “neighborhood greenways” using quieter side streets. We could have told them that 5 years ago!
  • Pedestrian safety is key to all road safety Brazil is getting hip to pedestrian safety. See Peatónito for more winning strategies.
  • Here is a humorous video showing how the pedestrian is treated like royalty in Brasilia, complete with fanfare and a crown.
  • The Seattle Bike Blog notes a shift of support people who bike for everyday transportation. We are thrilled at this shift in focus as well!
  • The human story of “serious injuries and fatalities” is more than statistics. Thanks to KUOW Ruby de Luna for telling that story.

Seattle is a leader in the Renaissance of family-biking.

Good Transportation Planning starts with good Urban Planning

  • In some cities, innovation and productivity don’t grow super-linearly. Populations grow, but the benefits don’t accrue with them as we would expect. This is likely because transportation infrastructure in those places is so poor that people aren’t able to connect across town to each other. This tells us that bad infrastructure that divides us has the potential to wipe out the most fundamental benefit of cities.
  • Let’s prioritize people first. “A complete streets policy should be a fabulous thing that elevates safety, the economy, and social equity in cities, but it can also amount to nothing more than a few new rules that are easily ducked if officials don’t want to follow the spirit of the law.”
  • Think of streets as public spaces–investments in the economy of a city that don’t need to cost much money. “The reason people visit Paris isn’t because it’s easy to park…They go because of the culture, the food, the history and the public spaces.”
  • Chicago’s 2013 Complete Streets Guideline is well worth a look because it prioritizes People before Vehicles. “All transportation projects and programs, from scoping to maintenance, will favor pedestrians first, then transit riders, cyclists, and automobiles. Street design…will not be limited by rigid engineering standards. This will allow staff to develop innovative solutions that meet the over-arching goal of a complete street. The safety and convenience of all users of the transportation system including pedestrians, bicyclists, transit users, freight, and motor vehicle drivers shall be accommodated and balanced in all types of transportation and development projects and through all phases of a project so that even the most vulnerable–children, elderly, and persons with disabilities–can travel safely within the public right-of-way.” (p. 6). In Chicago Neighborhood Streets, traffic is slowed to 10 to 20 m.p.h.
  • We hope the new Public Space Management Program is just the start of streets for people. Trees, design, streets as places figure prominently.

The culture of the car is overwhelming

  • I’m looking to give up my car. But my experience shows we won’t do so until alternatives get better. Thoughful, well-researched Seattle Times column by Thanh Tan.
  • Think how much money we spend on products to make us healthy, happy, sexy. Invest in walking/biking @Walkscore
  • Millions of mandated off-street parking spaces turn sidewalks into danger zones, especially for children and the disabled. Parking rules can lead to absurd and unwelcome results…Requirements that builders provide ample quotas of off-street parking spaces worsen traffic, multiply collisions, push up housing prices, dampen business profitability, amplify sprawl, and pollute both air and water. Parking rules are a surprisingly potent hidden force shaping–or misshaping–our communities. Alan Durning writes a series of articles on “free” parking in Sightline.
  • New York Times story on The End of Car Culture written by Bill Ford, executive chairman of the Ford Motor Company, lays out a business plan for cities in which “pedestrian, bicycle, private cars, commercial and public transportation traffic are woven into a connected network to save time, conserve resources, lower emissions and improve safety.”

Bike Share is coming to Seattle

  • Bike share won’t replace other types of transportation. It’s not supposed to. Instead, it will work alongside other modes to make them better. It’s much easier to ride a bike in New York than it was five years ago.
  • Bikeshare started on Memorial Day in New York! And New York has some terrific new protected bike lanes.
  • On my summer vacation in the Big Apple I thought about this simple necessity for Seattle’s bike share program: safe streets to ride on. Whatever the appetite for bike share, NYC Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan has long argued that cycling infrastructure must be built in advance of demand as a way to encourage riding. In this way, the bike share program could be seen as an inevitable outgrowth, a plan that required years of investments before becoming feasible. “We didn’t just drop this bike share system in overnight,” she said. “We spent five years installing more than 350 miles of bike lanes.”
  • NYC Bikeshare works because 8th & 9th Ave miles of protected safe lanes. Other Bikeshare is not as connected or busy. (I’ve just visited Minneapolis, Chicago, Boston, New York, and Washington DC Bikeshare systems. Only NYC Bikeshare appears to be thriving–and used by lots of women–because it is coordinated with excellent, protected lanes. Other cities have hit and miss systems depending on the location of their Bikeshare racks.)
  • Bike sharing is opening up everywhere it seems! Now all we need is more women riding in safe, protected bike lanes. Here is Chicago’s story.

TREES

  • Let’s get planting Seattle! Friends of Trees in Portland has planted 450,000 trees in 10 years. Vancouver has planted 150,000 new trees. Seattle Urban Forest Management Plan will soon be approved. What are we waiting for Seattle? Trees benefit communities in so many ways!
  • Applications are open for the Free Trees in Seattle starting July 31st. Selection is limited. Trees can be planted on street planting strips or your home yards. Green up your Greenways. Though the application closes mid-October, apply early since choice trees go fast. Limited to 4 trees/household.

Greenways are starting to get built in Seattle

  • Seattle’s first 20 mph curb humps going in along Ballard Greenways! More work happening in Delridge too. So far, Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) has installed curb ramps at arterials, widened the sidewalk and installed a ramp at Seaview Ave. that connects to the Burke-Gilman Trail and is in the process of adding speed humps. The beacon to cross 24th Ave NW, signs and street paint are all scheduled to be installed soon and the project will be completed this summer. Check out Facebook photos or see SDOT’s website for more information.
  • Fremont Ave in Greenwood is getting a “Greenways makeover” too.
  • Great new website for Greenwood-Phinney Greenways! Pop up greenways planned.

Seattle Neighborhood Greenways is a safe and livable streets organization. These past few months have been busy for us!

  • In June, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways sponsored Disaster Relief Trials as part of the Bicycle Urbanism Symposium with Seattle Office of Emergency Management, FEMA, American Red Cross, and Seattle Police to see how bicycles could be used effectively in a natural disaster. Video.
  • In June Seattle Neighborhood Greenways hosted about 30 people on a Vancouver BC study trip to look at examples of excellent safe, lively, green streets for people. Flickr photos from Portland Bike Greenway Greg Raisman. The study trip was written up by Urban Systems, one of the Vancouver hosts. Find out how we are all re-imagining streets as places for. Urban Systems in Vancouver BC shares how Vancouver has become one of the world’s most liveable cities: “The places themselves were beautiful, inspiring, and indications of a vibrant, healthy city, but what we took back is the way that the government was willing to experiment and take chances. It really came across that the City, the people, and the consultants are on the same page. There is a clear vision of where the community as a whole really wants Vancouver to go.”
  • Should our safe streets maps that we are working on for Seattle Neighborhood Greenways include public restrooms? Night owl bars? Here are Seattle maps that show these important local amenities and more in Seattle.
  • Seattle Neighborhood Greenways also put on a Mayoral Candidate Forum in July. Don’t forget to mail in your ballot by August 6! The Mayoral candidates–Bruce Harrell, Charlie Staadecker, Ed Murray, Joey Gray, Kate Martin, Mary Martin, Mike McGinn, Peter Steinbrueck–showed up well-prepared and full of ideas for making Seattle a better place. Seattle Met article. Seattle Channel video.

Seattle Neighborhood Greenways co-hosted Professor John Pucher’s visit in June.

He made quite a splash with keynote speeches, interviews, and an op-ed articles.

  • From his Vancouver BC talk: “I’m going to convince you to be a supporter of bicycling here in the Vancouver area because of three reasons. No. 1: The more people who get on bikes, the fewer people who are congesting the roads you want to drive on. No. 2: The more people you get on bikes, the fewer people are parking their cars in parking spaces you want. No. 3: The more people who get on their bikes, the less there is in the way of health care costs to the region as a whole. Also it turns out investing in cycling is a lot cheaper than investing in new roadways. So as a taxpayer you will be paying less taxes as a result of this new system”
  • John Pucher tells it like it is on 2nd Ave–so glad we helped bring him out for the Bicycle Urbanism Symposium!
  • Front page Seattle Times article by Mike Lindblom “Ten years ago Seattle was in the forefront of bicycle politics, but the city is so slow to get projects moving that it’s falling behind Minneapolis, Portland, Vancouver, Chicago, even Austin.” Time to turn that around Seattle!
  • John Pucher interview KIRO radio. “I think most Seattle drivers would not like to menace people on bikes and certainly the people riding would not like to be menaced by the cars… a lot of the design on the streets of Seattle seem to create problems. Vancouver and Portland are going way way ahead of Seattle.” Pucher comments Seattle has “the lousiest pavement I have ever seen in North America.”
  • Pucher’s Seattle Times Op-Ed. Seattle was once far beyond Portland as a bicycling city–and we can reclaim our leadership.
  • Follow-up article on Seattle biking. Can Seattle catch up again to Portland and Vancouver? Is Seattle the Number One Pretender in Bicycling?

What’s the best way to improve safety for people who walk & bike?

A surprisingly simple solution according to noted Active Transporation Professor John Pucher:

“Motor vehicles impose the most serious traffic dangers to cyclists,” explains Pucher.

“You’ve got to reduce motor vehicles speeds on shared roadways and provide physical separation of cyclists from motor vehicle traffic on arterials. You also have to restrict car use by implementing car-free zones, traffic-calmed residential neighborhoods, and lowering car speeds on city streets. This is crucial to increasing both cyclist and pedestrian safety.”

Thank you Bicycle Alliance of Washington and Cascade Bicycle Club for your work on statewide bicycle transportation issues.

And a final note…

Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia.
-H.G. Wells

Nuts and Bolts

Expert commuters, please join us. We need you! As our rides grow larger, we welcome good bicyclists like you who can offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques for new, returning and reluctant cyclists. This is a Bike Smart Seattle ride. All ages and skill levels are welcome. All Spokespeople rides are led by Cascade Bicycle Club certified ride leaders.

Contact information

If you want more information about this ride or about Spokespeople, please contact us!

Keep happy and keep pedaling!

Our Fantastic Spokespeople Ride Leaders:

  • Cathy Tuttle (206)547-9569/(206)713-6269 cathy.tuttle[at]gmail.com (Wallingford Spokespeople)
  • Michael Snyder (206)781-7221 msnyder[at]zserf.com (Ballard Spokespeople and the Cascade Bike Club Board)
  • Michael Herschensohn (206)412-0702 mh982501[at]gmail.com (Queen Anne Spokespeople)
  • Stu Hennessey (206)938-3322 alkistu[at]hotmail.com (West Seattle Spokespeople)
  • Al Miller (206)697-4603 amiller7x7[at]comcast.net (NE Spokespeople)

And our other leaders Cindy Riskin, Lee LeCroix, William Gerdes, Denny Kerr, Jim Mathieu, Norm Tjaden, Robin Randels, Madi Carlson, Mark Davison, Sander Lazar (Ravenna Bryant Spokespeople), Scott, Bill, and even more people who help out whenever you can. Thank you.

facebook.com/spokespeople
twitter.com/spokespeople

Spokespeople rides on the 1st Saturday of every month (since March 2007) linking people through neighborhoods along secure bike routes. Article in Worldchanging on Spokespeople.

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Spokespeople: Heritage trees and beautiful urban views in Seattle June 1 at 2pm http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/june-2013/ http://spokespeople.us/blog/archive/june-2013/#comments Sat, 01 Jun 2013 05:24:43 +0000 Cathy Tuttle http://spokespeople.us/blog/?p=815 Hello Spokespeople!

Our Monthly Ride

Spokespeople at Little Free LibrariesSaturday, June 1, is going to be a great day for a ride. Don’t forget your sunscreen. We’ll meet on Densmore and 42nd in Wallingford and leave at 2 p.m. On our ride we’ll discover how majestic trees in parks and private yards make Wallingford a green and lovely place. Experience heritage trees and beautiful urban views in Wallingford on this pleasant early summer ride.

Please subscribe to our monthly newsletter–SUBSCRIBE to by clicking here!

Spokespeople at UWAll Spokespeople rides meet at the south end of Wallingford Playfield at 42nd & Densmore and ride on greenways whenever possible to an adjacent urban center. New riders welcome! Please come by 1:45 if you are new to riding in groups or if you need help with adjusting your helmet or bike. All ages and skill levels welcome! All rides are on the road with traffic, and include expert commuters who accompany us to offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques.

Spokespeople is on Facebook and Twitter–please follow us! And check out and subscribe to our beautiful new website and blog: www.spokespeople.us.

Nuts and Bolts

You can see photos of past rides on Facebook or on www.spokespeople.us.

Expert commuters, please join us. We need you! As our rides grow larger, we welcome good bicyclists like you who can offer encouragement and model good road riding techniques for new, returning and reluctant cyclists. All ages and abilities are welcome. All Spokespeople rides are led by Cascade Bicycle Club certified ride leaders.

Contact information

If you want more information about this ride or about Spokespeople, please contact us!

Keep happy and keep pedaling!

Our Fantastic Spokespeople Ride Leaders:

  • Cathy Tuttle (206) 547-9569/(206) 713-6269 cathy.tuttle[at]gmail.com (Wallingford Spokespeople)
  • Michael Snyder (206) 781-7221 msnyder[at]zserf.com (Ballard Spokespeople and the Cascade Bike Club Board)
  • Madi Carlson (206) 612-4970 madidotcom[at]gmail.com
  • Michael Herschensohn (206) 412-0702 mh982501[at]gmail.com (Queen Anne Spokespeople)
  • Stu Hennessey (206) 938-3322 alkistu[at]hotmail.com (West Seattle Spokespeople)
  • Al Miller (206) 697-4603 amiller7x7[at]comcast.net (NE Spokespeople)

And our other leaders Cindy Riskin, Lee LeCroix, William Gerdes, Denny Kerr, Jim Mathieu, Norm Tjaden, Robin Randels, Madi Carlson, Mark Davison, Sander Lazar (Ravenna Bryant Spokespeople), Scott, Bill, and even more people who help out whenever you can. Thank you.

facebook.com/spokespeople
twitter.com/spokespeople

Spokespeople rides on the 1st Saturday of every month (since March 2007) linking people through neighborhoods along secure bike routes. Article in Worldchanging on Spokespeople.

Other Rides

West Seattle SpokespeopleWest Seattle Spokespeople Alki Vintage Bike Ride June 9 11am. Jack Block Park. Get out that vintage bicycle you have been storing away but were afraid to ride. This is a flat and easy ride along the Alki Beach path perfect for the oldest vintage bicycle. Last stop on the ride will be at the West Seattle Tool Library and the DIY Bikes free bicycle repair. Refreshments served.

Family Ride–Magnuson Park June 23 10am. Round up the kids and join Morgan Scherer of FamilyBike for a ride around Magnuson Park and environs. Children riding their own bikes or attached to a parental bike are encouraged to come.

See our calendar for more details on these June events.

  • May 31: Ballard Summer Streets 3:30-7pm.
  • June 1: Coffee with the Sallys (Bagshaw & Clark). U-District 9-10:30am.
  • June 1: Hopscotch Central District 9a-6p.
  • June 1: Spokespeople Wallingford Rides to beautiful views and trees 2-4pm.
  • June 2: West Seattle Farmer’s Market Walk to Alki 9a-12p.
  • June 2: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 5: Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • June 5: Seattle Bicycle Master Plan discussion City Hall Open House 6-7:30pm.
  • June 5: Queen Anne Greenways at QA Community Council 7:30pm.
  • June 6: Model Pedestrian Safety Programs Free webinar. 11a-12:30p.
  • June 6: Safe Routes to School Free webinar 11a-12p.
  • June 6: Seattle Bicycle Master Plan Lunch and Learn webinar 12-1pm.
  • June 7: Kirkland Walk & Roll Safety Fair 3-7pm.
  • June 9: West Seattle Spokespeople Vintage Bike Ride 11a-2p.
  • June 9: UW Stairway Walk 2-3pm.
  • June 10: Measuring Greenways Performance. Ballard 6:30-8:30pm.
  • June 12: Seattle Pedestrian Advisory Board. City Hall 6-8pm.
  • June 12: Maple Leaf Greenways monthly meeting 7:30pm.
  • June 12: Seattle Bicycle Master Plan Open House. Columbia City 6-7:30pm.
  • June 13: King County Transit Safety Summit. Downtown 8a-4:30p.
  • June 13: Sound Cycling: Mileage Celebration and Finale. NE Seattle 4-7pm.
  • June 13: Seattle Bicycle Master Plan Open House. Roosevelt HS 6-7:30pm.
  • June 16: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 17: Longfellow Creek Watershed Walk 6:30pm.
  • June 18: John Pucher Lecture. UW 6:30pm.
  • June 19: Bicycle Urbanism Public Reception. UW 7pm.
  • June 19-21: Bicycle Urbanism Symposium. UW all day.
  • June 21: Disaster Relief Trials. UW 3-7pm.
  • June 20: Safe Routes to School Free Webinar. 11a-12p.
  • June 20: Ballard Greenways monthly meeting 7:30pm.
  • June 22: African American Community Walks. Central District 5-7pm.
  • June 23: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • June 23: Family Ride Magnusson Park 10a-12p.
  • June 27: PSRC Pedestrian Bicycle Advisory Board. Downtown 10a-12p.
  • June 27: Lake City Greenways SDOT Public Meeting 6-7:30pm.
  • June 29: Artcrank Bike Art. Downtown 4-7pm.
  • June 30: Bicycle Sundays Lake Washington Blvd. 10a-6p.
  • July 1: Livable Streets Mayoral Forum co-sponsored by Seattle Neighborhood Greenways. Madison Park 6:30pm.

A personal loss

As many of you know, my husband, David Notkin, passed away on April 22. Seattle Times columnist Jerry Large wrote a beautiful profile about David.

I am still very sad. But I am hopeful too. I will continue to run Spokespeople and Seattle Neighborhood Greenways. I believe strongly in the possibility of a city, indeed in the possibility of a world, filled with streets that are safe for people. I hope you continue to support me and make this your vision in whatever way you can.

Our Spokespeople family

Celebrity Spokespeople and FamilyRide mom Madi is featured in this month’s Parentmap! AND in this month’s CoolMom profile. She is everywhere!!

More Cargo Bikes

West Seattle Spokespeople Ride Leader Stu Hennessey, owner of Alki Bike and Board, is now a local source for Cargo Bikes and Xtracycles!

Seattle and Seattle Neighborhoods

  • Is safe biking coming soon to a neighborhood near you? Find out at a Seattle Department of Transportation Open House on the Bicycle Master Plan Update on June 5, 6, 12 and 13.
  • Seattle is playing host to local & international bicycle luminaries June 19-21. You can meet them at a public reception on June 19 from 6-9pm @BicycleUrbanism UW symposium $20 reception. Or you can register for the whole symposium online.
  • The keynote speaker for the symposium is Dr. John Pucher. Seattle Neighborhood Greenways is sponsoring a free evening lecture with Dr. Pucher on “How to increase cycling and walking: Lessons from cities across the globe.” Tuesday June 18, 6:30pm
  • Ballard Neighborhood Greenway Project has started! The project includes ADA curb ramps, 460 sidewalk repairs, a wider sidewalk connection to the Burke Gilman Trail at Seaview Ave NW, and 18 asphalt speed humps to slow vehicle speeds but be gentle enough to accommodate bicyclists and other non-motorized vehicles including wheelchairs.
  • First 20 mph sighting on 39th NE! Thanks to Seattle Department of Transporation for the signs and Bicycle Alliance of Washington for working with the State Legislature to pass the Neighborhood Safe Streets Bill in May 2013!!
  • Call it TOW — Transit-Oriented Wasteland. One possible solution: Rainier Valley Greenways Safe Routes 2 Transit?
  • Neighbors rally to move Eva’s beloved garden as much-needed Lake City Greenways helps as the Safe Routes to Schools sidewalk goes in.
  • Are you ready for Seattle to be on the list of “America’s Most Bikeable Neighborhoods“? We sure are! Maybe next year.
  • May was bike to school month. There were amazing Bike to School events all over Seattle in May. In response to the questions, “How many bikes at your school?” Shannon said, “Just counted 124 at Loyal Heights Elementary today!” Seattle Public School Superintendent Jose Banda said: “More students biking to school means lower transportation costs, which translates into more funds for our classrooms. Ultimately, supporting bicycling will help us find happier, healthier, more focused students at their desks.”
  • Mayor McGinn convened a School Road Safety Task Force in May. “Getting to school by walking and biking is fun – and research shows it improves children’s grades, keeps them fit, and happier during the school day. Let’s do more to protect our kids and give them the freedom to safely walk or bike to school,” said Cathy Tuttle, director of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways.
  • Take the survey on School Road Safety before June 30! The City’s goal is to increase safety on streets near schools and make it easier for children to get to and from school safely, however families choose to travel. Questions? please contact SchoolRoadSafety@seattle.gov.
  • Good news, the Bicycle Master Plan update will include a refresh of the end-of-trip facility choices. Since Seattle has already shifted to a vision of designing bike routes that accommodate people of all-ages-and-abilities, it seems like it would make sense to update the end-of-trip bike parking choices to accommodate the bikes used by people of all-ages-and-abilities. Bob from Madison Greenways has assembled a document with six criteria we could use to measure the user-experience quality of the different bike racks on the market in terms of how well they meet the needs of all people.
  • Thanks Seattle Councilmember Nick Licata for this great map of POPOS (Privately Owned Public Open Spaces)! and an interactive website of Critical Crossings that SDOT could re-engineer.

Safe streets improvements in other cities

  • Bikeshare started on Memorial Day in New York! And New York has some terrific new protected bike lanes. I’m looking forward to my summer vacation in the Big Apple! Don’t overlook this simple necessity for Seattle’s bike share program: safe streets to ride on. Whatever the appetite for bike share, NYC Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan has long argued that cycling infrastructure must be built in advance of demand as a way to encourage riding. In this way, the bike share program could be seen as an inevitable outgrowth, a plan that required years of investments before becoming feasible. “We didn’t just drop this bike share system in overnight,” she said. “We spent five years installing more than 350 miles of bike lanes.”
  • The idea cycling to work is on dependent workplace showers is another manifestation of the cycling-as-exercise image.
  • “Candidates can’t be legitimately pro-growth without being pro-complete streets,” @StreetsPAC says. “They’re a vital economic engine.” Candidates need to realize – as they never have in the past – people who want safer streets help them get elected. “As much as improvements to the public realm like pedestrian plazas, bike lanes, and slow zones make our streets safer, they also make, very clearly, for good politics,” says McClure, adding that that street improvements appeal to both liberals and pro-business conservatives who like their effect on real estate values.
  • Mayoral race in NYC focuses on livable streets. People are voting with their feet, they’re voting with their pedals, and they’re voting with their dollars.
  • Equity Good read: “Level the playing field when it comes to access to safe, efficient and well connected bike travel for all communities.”
  • Family-friendly streets. You feel relaxed, safe, powerful and confident. It’s that type of environment that allows kids to ride on their own.
  • Poor neighborhoods have more asphalt, fewer trees, and hotter microclimates. Maybe it is time for road diets to plant lots of trees?

Memorial Walks/Memorial Bikes

Seattle averages 12 fatalities a year of people who are killed by vehicles when they walk and ride bicycles. We’re building a timely response team for Memorial Walk/Memorial Bikes that you can join.

For the past five years of monthly Spokespeople newsletters I have never brought up the subject of serious injuries and fatalities because I want to encourage you to ride. I know many of you are of the “willing but wary” camp and may be intimidated by the risks of biking.

We can make our streets much, much, much safer. And make our traffic enforcement, investment in safe street engineering, and driver education much better too. Northern European cities have an order of magnitude fewer pedestrian and bicyclist serious injuries and fatalities.

However, the risk of not incorporating walking and not riding into your daily routine is far higher than sitting in a car because of the medical risks of inactivity. So please, be alert when you ride a bike and walk, and know that by walking and biking for daily life you are choosing the right thing to do for your health.

In May, we helped local communities organize a Memorial Bike Ride for Lance David and a Memorial Walk for Surinderpal Basra. Emotionally, this is one of Seattle Neighborhood Greenway’s most difficult endeavors – we bring together the victims’ families, local community groups, City of Seattle officials, and other groups representing public health, vulnerable people, and active transportation advocates to honor victims, raise awareness, and look for successful solutions.

Lance David
Mayor McGinn, who attended this event committed $900,000 to East Marginal Way road safety improvements!

Jodi Connolly (Seattle Bike Board/West Seattle Bike Connections) gave a moving speech at May 7 Memorial Ride on the site where Lance David died:

I am Jodi Connolly, a West Seattle resident, bike rider and commuter (also married to one), a mom, and a member of the Seattle Bicycle Advisory Board.

I am honored to be on the Board at this time and actively involved in the Bicycle Master Plan update with such passionate and capable people from SDOT and public groups like West Seattle Bike Connections.

We are here to remember Lance David – to say his name and hear his name and ride our bikes and be in this place.

His name is Lance David. His name is Lance David.

If your day was anything like mine last Wednesday, a good chunk of it was spent alternating between – and simultaneously feeling – grief… relief… confusion… grief…sickness… With every name I checked off my list I still wondered, “WHO?”

His name is Lance David. He rode from Federal Way.

Grief…relief…confusion… It could have been any one of us. But it wasn’t. It was Lance David.

I didn’t know him. Like many of us.

Thanks to some of his co-workers and friends, I have little to share with you about who Lance David was. We know he worked at Expediters, was a husband, a father of twins, and enjoyed riding. Let me share with you come of what his friends want us to know about Lance David.

“As a cyclist, Lance was a very strong rider, but one of the things that struck me was his perseverance. He never gave up, and always seemed to get stronger as the ride went on. His perseverance extended to others as well. He wouldn’t let anyone else give up either. (He nagged me into doing the final pass last year on the Death Ride.) He was also just a very down-to-earth person, and very straightforward. I don’t think I ever once said, “I wonder what Lance is thinking.

I would add that Lance loved adventure. He wasn’t a thrill seeker or adrenaline junkie, just an adventure lover. Sometimes that was on a bicycle. Other times it might be hiking or some other outdoor activity.

We talked about riding bikes frequently and when he learned that I rode up Mt Haleakela he would consistently ask me for details on the ride. He ultimately did the ride and had great stories to tell. I’m not sure that he understood how windy it gets on Maui because he did the ride on his deep dish carbon wheels and nearly got blown over due to the force of the wind. Another good example of his perseverance and love for adventure.” Thank you, Marty Sparks and Scott Noe for sharing these words about Lance.

From the poet, Rashani’s poem “The Unbroken”

There is a hollow space

Too vast for words

Through which we pass with each loss

Out of whose darkness

We are sanctioned into being…

As we move forward from here and through this place, let’s remember Lance David – and work together for improvements so that all ages and abilities can get home safely.

Today is still a great day to ride. Thank you.

Surinderpal Basra
Everyone knew her. The lady who crossed the street after work every day on her way to the bus stop. Surinderpal Basra.

“I was rolling silverware for lunch when I saw her go down,” said Jennifer from the Pig Iron Café. “I’ve worked here for eight years and saw her every day. I knew right away what had happened.”

Jennifer and I watched the world go by through big plate glass windows looking out on 1st Avenue South at the Pig Iron. The café was full of lunchtime customers. “It’s so sad,” she said, “the guy who hit her, he works right there. He knew her too. I haven’t seen him this week. How is he going to deal with this?”

As we talked, big semis, cars, and trucks streamed by, most all clearly exceeding the 35 mph posted speed by 10 to 20 miles over. “They give out tickets sometimes,” said Jennifer, “but mostly cars just put pedal to the floor to get through the light on Lucille.”

Traffic studies show that a person hit by a vehicle going at 30 mph has a 60% chance of surviving, while the chance of surviving drops to less than 10% with that vehicle travelling at 50mph. Speed really does kill.

“I ran out right after but I knew it was over,” said Jennifer. “I couldn’t talk to reporters that day, I was that upset,” she said. “The police told us cars are supposed to stop at corners for people who are crossing, but that never happens. We just want to cross the street.”

“Our Essential Baking staff is like family,” said Leslie. “Surinderpal Basra was reliable and very well-liked. We miss her.” Georgetown is full of small pockets of small businesses. “We were so shaken up,” Leslie said. “Businesses from all over sent flowers and checked to see if we were okay. We care about each other.”

Leslie said Essential Bakery had asked the City for a crosswalk years ago so people working on one side of 1st Avenue South could get to the other side without having to walk two long blocks north to the light, then two long blocks south to get to the deli art across the street.

“We’re really cut off but the City said they couldn’t put in a crosswalk so close to a stoplight,” Leslie said. The idea of slowing traffic to its posted 35 mph speed had not yet entered the conversation.

The bartender at Slim Jim’s, Tiffany, was pouring for a big lunchtime crowd but didn’t have the windows to see out and keep watch the way the Pig Iron Café staff does. She says cars and trucks “move really fast here.”

“This is a place where there are so many near misses,” said Jennifer. “In the past week, a car flipped just a block south, and there was a two-car crash just up at the light last week too.” This little stretch of Georgetown has a dozen small businesses – restaurants, bars, bakeries, small trade shops – just trying to become a community.

“You tell the Mayor to come down here,” said Jennifer. “Let him see what we have to deal with just to get across the street. We need some help here.”

What’s the best way to improve safety for people who walk & bike?

A surprisingly simple solution according to noted Active Transporation Professor John Pucher:

“Motor vehicles impose the most serious traffic dangers to cyclists,” explains Pucher.

“You’ve got to reduce motor vehicles speeds on shared roadways and provide physical separation of cyclists from motor vehicle traffic on arterials. You also have to restrict car use by implementing car-free zones, traffic-calmed residential neighborhoods, and lowering car speeds on city streets. This is crucial to increasing both cyclist and pedestrian safety.”

Thank you Bicycle Alliance of Washington and Cascade Bicycle Club for your work on statewide bicycle transportation issues.

And a final note…

Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia.
-H.G. Wells

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