SFBC Biker Bulletin
November 13, 2006
"Learning is one of the great pleasures in life. If you don't believe me, tell a 10-year-old kid he can do one of two things: have as much chocolate as you want or learn to ride a bicycle. The bicycle wins every time."
— UC Berkeley physics Professor Richard A. Muller, World listens in online when Cal professor teaches physics, SF Chronicle, November 6, 2006
Table of Contents
Give bike advocacy a boost!
Bike Plan Ruling Freezes Bike Lanes, SFBC Works for Resolution
Superior Court Judge Peter Busch last week handed down his verdict on the lawsuit against the San Francisco Bicycle Plan, and it's tough — the preliminary injunction in effect since June continues in force, forbidding the city from physical streetscape changes for the sake of bike improvements (such as parking removal and lane re-allocation, even shared-lane "sharrows" and U-rack bike parking racks) until the city has completed a full environmental review on the Bike Plan.
Judge Busch acknowledged that the suit was not a matter of "bikes vs. cars" but rather a narrow question of process under CEQA (the state environmental review law) — whether the Bike Plan, adopted unanimously last June by the Board of Supervisors and Mayor Newsom, has the potential to cause significant environmental impacts in and of itself, or is (as the city argued) a set of guiding principles and recommendations to steer San Francisco's progress toward a more bike-friendly city, leaving the specific change-making projects to another process of review and legislation. Under the court's ruling, the city will have to carry out a CEQA review on the 2005 Bike Plan as a single thing, and it remains to be seen how long this will take. The SFBC is working hard to make sure that process is as efficient and ambitious as possible, to make sure this situation doesn't drag out any longer than needed. Stay tuned for more on our progress.
Tomorrow's Transportation Authority Plans & Programs Committee meeting (10:30 am, City Hall, Room 263) will hear an update on the MTA Bicycle Program; interested velocitizens should consider attending to learn the latest about the Bike Plan from the official agencies.
We certainly need big changes for better everyday bicycling in this city, but the Bike Plan alone won't make them — to make a real Citywide Bike Network happen we need an Implementation Plan with firm dates and dollars and deliverables, and we look to the Board and Mayor to commit in earnest to an aggressive program to move the plan forward, towards the official goal of 10% of trips in SF by bike by 2010 (about 36 months from now, as Mayor Newsom noted in his Oct. 26 State of the City Address). For more on the Bike Plan lawsuit, see our Network page.
SFBC Turns Out Bike Vote '06
SFBC members turned out in force to help shape last week's elections. Thanks to all of you who stepped up to work on our endorsed campaigns.
Most significantly, we will keep our bike-friendly majority on the Board of Supervisors. Two of the SFBC's endorsed Supervisoral candidates won re-election: Chris Daly in District 6 and Sophie Maxwell in District 10. Our endorsed candidate in District 8, Alix Rosenthal, ran a strong campaign and helped bring important issues to the forefront but lost to incumbent Bevan Dufty. Congratulations to Supervisor Dufty, who is also a bike supporter. The SFBC has had a good working relationship with Dufty and we look forward to continuing that. Congratulations to Emily Drennen for running a strong campaign for the BART Board of Directors. Though Emily lost the race, we look forward to her continuing to be a presence on the local scene.
On the initiative front, we are happy to report that Prop. 90, which we opposed, went down. Unfortunately, so did Prop. E, the parking tax increase which would have brought much-needed millions of dollars to better transit and streets in the city. Finally, Proposition 1B, which the SFBC opposed, passed. Though it is geared largely toward highway widenings, the SFBC will work with our partners across the state to try to harness well-deserved funding for better biking and walking.
Go to Veloswap Free with the SFBC
Come experience the excitement of beautiful handcrafted bike parts, shiny new accessories, and well-loved classics at your fingertips for one day only at Veloswap this Saturday, November 18. Join or renew your membership with the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition today to get into Veloswap FREE and skip the long lines! You won't want to miss the largest bicycle expo to come to San Francisco. Veloswap is $8, Saturday, November 18, 9am-4pm.
Volunteer Night this Wednesday
Volunteer for your first, fifth, or fourtieth time for the SFBC this Wednesday night,
November 15, from 5-8pm for our favorite San Francisco Bicycle Coalition
Night! This night of grassroots activism is what makes the SFBC
so productive when it comes to making San Francisco a more bike-friendly
city! You will help us fold, collate, pack, seal, stamp, and write,
making our city more bikable while enjoying company of fellow cyclists and
dinner on us. Come join us to toast a very special SFBC
volunteer — Fran Taylor — who won the
REI Steward for the Environment Award. Contact
or just show up to SFBC World Headquarters, 995 Market Street, Ste 1550,
between 5-8pm. Don't forget to bring up your bike!
Winterfest Volunteer Sign Ups
Calling all volunteers! Winterfest, the biggest bike party of the year is looking for over 100 volunteers. Volunteer your help in advance to distribute posters and prep auction materials or volunteer at the event doing everything from valet bike parking, live auction modeling and being the welcome wagon. All volunteers receive complimentary admission to Winterfest and the undying thanks of the SFBC. All interested people should sign up in advance. We hope to have all our volunteers by Friday, November 24th. Join the fun!
Check out the Winterfest goods
Looking for a new bike? How about a tandem for you and your sweetie? Some waterproof panniers? Fenders? Local art for your wall? We've got it all! Join us at the 2006 SFBC Winterfest auction and check out the goods before you arrive. We've got something for everyone.
Only 2 days left to take the SFBC Member Survey
The SFBC is interested in hearing how we are doing and learn more about YOU, our member. If you haven't already, please take the next 10 minutes to participate in our 2006 Member Survey. As our thanks for your valuable input, we will have a drawing for an SFBC goodie bag-including new SFBC merchandise, a Timbuk2 messenger bag, a Green Zebra 2007 coupon booklet and more!
An email with the URL was emailed to our members on 11/9 from Leah Shahum, Executive Director. If you are a member, and did not receive the email, please contact Jodie and we'll email you your link! If you've click on the link and receive the "Thank you" message, most likely another lovely member used that computer to take the survey. Thanks everyone. Survey results will be publised early in the new year.
Columbus Avenue Transportation Plan — Get Involved!
Columbus Avenue is the vital backbone of SF's northeast, connecting Downtown and the Financial District to Chinatown, North Beach, and Fisherman's Wharf (and, of course, it's official SF Bike Route 11). The SF County Transportation Authority and Renew SF are working to develop a consensus-based community transportation plan for the historic Columbus Avenue corridor, and they need your input and advice, especially to the notion of better bicycling conditions. Join the conversation this Wednesday (11/15) at a community meeting at the Italian Athletic Club, 1630 Stockton St., 5:30 pm. For more information, see the Renew SF website.
Bike Ed in the Western Addition this Saturday
This Saturday, the popular Adult Urban Bike Ed class is coming to the Western Addition (11/18, 10am-2pm, Ella Hill Hutch Community Center, 1050 McAllister St, at Webster), and as always, it's free! This four hour in-classroom course teaches the basics of safe and enjoyable cycling, including riding in traffic, necessary equipment, crash avoidance, and legal rights and responsibilities. Open to adults 14 and over. Bicycle not required, but please bring your lunch. The class is free, but you must register — sign up right now online!
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