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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Bike Walk Knoxville

Bike Walk Knoxville, a new chapter of Bike Walk Tennessee is being established. A steering committee met on Dec.9, 2012 to develop a mission, by-laws, and an action plan. Officers will be elected in the near future after by-laws are approved.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Share the Road License Plates being distributed

After years of hard work by the Jeff Roth Cycling Foundation, the first batch of 1000+ Share the Road License Plates are in the process of being distributed throughout the state. (Photograph courtesy of Jim Mead.) Some people have already received letters from their counties informing them about picking up their plate orders. A lucky few have already received their plates by now.

Reaching this point is quite a milestone in terms of cycling advocacy throughout the state. What are future milestones that we can aspire to? In the near future anyone will be able to get such a plate for his/her car (this initial batch of 1000 was by pre-registration only.)

Friday, December 7, 2012

Bike racks, bike lanes/greenways on agenda for 2013 in Johnson City

The Livable Communities Development Group of the Johnson City, Jonesborough, Washington County Economic Summit is digging into some specifics on the first of its top six issues areas (see below) for 2013 and beyond: “More interconnected, beautiful and clean bike and walking paths connecting destinations to live,work, shop and play in our community.”

(For the full article, click here: Bicycling update)

 After collaborative discussion, the group is set to work on two tracks, both in close coordination with the City of Johnson City. The first is planning and implementing the purchase and installation of additional bicycle racks around Johnson City. The second is looking comprehensively at the current network of bicycle routes that connect areas of the city, and working toward short, medium and long-term improvements that enhance connectivity and safety for Johnson City’s children and its growing number of adult cyclists.
 “We applaud the City and its staff for the many steps they’ve taken in this regard over the past several years,” Livable Communities facilitator Dan Reese said. “Our goal is to come alongside representatives of the planning, traffic and other divisions within the Development Services Department to keep the desire for continued improvements on the front burner.”
Development Group members are in the early stages of discussions internally and with the appropriate city representatives about both issues… Read more: Bicycling update

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Atlantic Cities Book Review - Walkable City

The Atlantic Cities has an excellent book review on the book Walkable City by Jeff Speck. Numerous other outlets have also reviewed the book. In short, the 10 pieces of walkability are as follows (quoted from the review):

  1. Put cars in their place - design cities around people, not cars.
  2. Mix the uses - mixed use development shortens trip lengths, making them feasible.
  3. Get the parking right - we often have excessive parking requirements, as well as underpriced parking.
  4. Let transit work - have transit go to the busiest areas, and go to the mixed use areas. Aim for 10 minute headways.
  5. Protect the pedestrian - have streets (two-way over one way) that favor slower travel. Parallel parking can "shield" pedestrians from automobile traffic.
  6. Welcome bikes - bikes can calm traffic, benefitting pedestrians and cyclists themselves.
  7. Shape the spaces - make the environment comfortable for walking.
  8. Plant trees
  9. Make friendly and unique [building] faces - have buildings and storefronts that people want to look at.
  10. Pick your winners - with limited resources, it's important to spend such on what makes the greatest differences.

The review's author then goes into some more detail about areas of disagreement such as the pros and cons of pedestrian-only zones, the desirability of green space, and the like. Parking and congestion pricing is tricky, in that newly revitalized downtowns should seek to welcome people coming in and visiting. Regardless, the book promises to be an interesting read.