SFBC Biker Bulletin
April 4, 2005
MAKE A DIFFERENCE: BE A BIKE BUDDY!
If there is one thing this year you can do to promote biking in SF this is it! Wouldn't it be amazing if all our friends, neighbors, co-workers and loved ones biked to work. The time is ripe for us to make it happen--together! Bike to Work Day--May 19th--the best bicycle event of the year is just around the corner, and the SFBC wants to help new riders bike to work with a little help from you--our members. Take part in the SFBC's biggest program for Bike to Work Day-- become a Bike Buddy!. Here's how...
The SFBC is looking for 100 star members to get 100 new people commuting by bike on May 19th. Tell your friends, neighbors and co-workers your stories about the joys of city biking! Share some pedal-love by helping a friend find the best bike-route to work. Re-live the joys of first time city riding while being a Bike Buddy! Think of that friend, neighbor, loved one or co-worker who would benefit from bicycling to work, and ask them to be your Bike Buddy!
The SFBC Bike Buddy program is as easy as 1-2-3. Go to www.sfbike.org/bikebuddy to find out how you can be a Bike Buddy. And if good feelings aren't enough, Bike Buddies who sign up by May 1 will be entered in a *special raffle* for cool prizes. Get complete details about the SFBC Bike Buddy program at sfbike.org/bikebuddy.
We all know that San Francisco is one of the greatest cities for bicycle commuting. The SFBC's goal is to have 10% of city trips made by bike by 2010 and this program is one step in making it happen. But, in order for us to achieve this milestone, we need your help. Go on, everyone knows someone who just needs a nudge, ask them to be your Bike Buddy!
Won't you be my Bike Buddy?
PANHANDLE PATHWAY/ MASONIC INTERSECTION GETS ATTENTION FROM THE CITY
We're happy to announce that several improvements have been made to the Panhandle Path crossing at Fell/Masonic, taking steps to improve this hazardous intersection. The improvements include: a ladder striped crosswalk, an advance-stop stripe added for cars on Masonic, prominent "turn guidance" stripe for cars turning left off Fell, removal of three parking spaces from Fell for better visibility, and a 3-second 'advance phase' of the traffic signal for pedestrians and bicyclists. These improvements are the first on-the-street results from the Bike Plan Update process, and we thank the Department of Parking and Traffic (DPT) for their work. The DPT will be surveying pathway users to assess the impact of these improvements, and the SFBC will be resuming our crossing guard program in a few weeks.
We are concerned that these recent changes may not be enough, by themselves, to fix the Fell/Masonic intersection, and have requested that DPT pursue a second phase of the project and provide two separate dedicated signal phases to provide safe passage for pathway users and left turning cars. What do you think? Please let us know what you think of the new improvements at Fell/Masonic by emailing us.
MARKET ST. BIKE LANES & MORE UP FOR VOTE
Mark your calendars for Monday, April 18th for an important public hearing as the Board of Supervisors considers 3 new bike lane proposals. The projects are new bike lanes on (1) Market Street, between Van Ness & 8th Sts.; (2) Oakdale Avenue between Selby and Bayshore; and (3) Fulton Street between Webster and Baker Sts. (The first two projects were selected as Top 20 priorities during the Bike Plan Update process.) We need your support at the April 18th hearing at 1pm at City Hall, Rm. 263.
BI-WEEKLY VOLUNTEER NIGHT--THIS WEDNESDAY!
This Wednesday is the volunteer week that you have been waiting for--the SFBC bi-weekly volunteer night! This week we will be mailing the Golden Wheel invites (April 28th--mark your calendar) along with the usual bi-weekly mailings. Come join the fun. As always, we'll provide tasty treats and dinner. Good people, great conversation & a whole lot of member involvement! Starting at 5pm til 8pm at the SFBC *new* Office: 995 Market Street (@6th) Suite 1550. For more info, contact Jodie at email@example.com or at 415-431-BIKE x 305.
HELP TREASURE ISLAND BECOME A SUSTAINABLE BIKETOPIA, NOT A CAR-CHOKED DISASTER
This Wednesday, April 6th, at 1pm in City Hall Room 263, the Supervisors' Land Use Committee will hold a hearing for the Treasure Island Development Authority to provide an update on the redevelopment of Treasure Island. We need to send a message to the Board that the plan falls short in the most important aspect of sustainability: compact development and smart transportation. The private automobile must not be the preferred form of transportation. Creating a walkable, bikeable, transit-oriented community requires clustering the housing within easy walking distance of transit and retail/commercial uses. The TI/YBI Transportation Plan should also accommodate bicycle access from both spans of the Bay Bridge, not just the East Span. Please come to City Hall and send a message that we have an opportunity to create a model sustainable community on Treasure Island, not re-hash the mistakes of suburbia. For more information, email us.
S.F. BIKE RACE GENERATES CONTROVERSY
A debate is swirling around the popular SF Grand Prix bike race (called the T-Mobile International last year), which has brought professional bike racing to San Francisco's streets the past four years. Some members of the Board of Supervisors are questioning the city's decision in years past to subsidize some of the city services that support the race. While race organizers claim the event benefits the city by bringing in money through event-related spending and tax revenue. The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote Tuesday on how to treat the race; meanwhile, the race organizers are threatening to move to another city unless it is given some discounts on city services. Ultimately, the SFBC believes that this is more of a financial issue for the city than a bike issue. Though, we hope to keep the popular bike race in San Francisco, where it helps to promote biking. (For background, see this story in last week's Chronicle.
STATE LEGISLATIVE UPDATES: A TAX ON BICYCLES? SIDEWALK PARKING? MORE FUNDING FOR CITIES?
In news from Sacramento: Assemblywoman Betty Karnette, a Long Beach Democrat, has introduced AB 1103, a bill that would encourage bicycle recycling by adding a fee to the sales of new bicycles. Although the SFBC is opposed to making it more difficult to own and ride a bicycle, Assemblymember Karnette's motives are positive, wanting to support youth-based bicycle programs. The California Bicycle Coalition and others are working with Assemblymember Karnette to craft amendments to the bill, including an elimination of the "tax" element of the bill. We will, of course, update you when and if there is any need for action. Contact us for more information.
In last week's Biker Bulletin, we alerted you to SB 810 (sponsored by Jackie Speier), legislation that would have enabled jurisdictions to allow cars to park on the sidewalk from dusk until 8am and those with disability placards to park there 24 hours a day, as long as a minimum of 5 feet is left "to get by". Due to strong pressure from Walk San Francisco, Senior Action Network, the California Council of the Blind, the SFBC, and other advocates, Senator Speier withdrew SB 810 stating that, "After the bill was introduced, phone calls and e-mails indicated that there was concern about whether it would work as intended. I've therefore decided to drop the bill and to focus on other issues of concern to my constituents." Thank you to everyone who sent a message regarding this bill. We were heard!
Finally, San Francisco Assemblymember Mark Leno has introduced a bill (AB 799) to allow San Francisco voters to restore our local Vehicle License Fee (VLF) to 2% of vehicle value, which would generate approximately $61 million for San Francisco's General Fund and help avoid future cuts to local programs and services (including sustainable transportation and environmental programs). Please send a brief email supporting AB 799 before the Assembly hearing this Wednesday. Emails can be sent to Robert Tashima
SFBC AFTER SCHOOL YOUTH PROGRAM NEEDS YOUR HELP!
The after school bicycling program (teaching middle school youth about traffic safety through bi-weekly bike rides), created by the SFBC, YMCA and Community Bridges Beacon, is now working in five schools! We need some help in the following areas:
HOW ENVIRONMENTAL LAW CAN BE A BARRIER TO SAFE STREETS: HEARING ON LEVEL OF SERVICE REFORM
A final reminder -- the San Francisco Bicycle Advisory Committee, the SF Board of Supervisors' citizen advisory committee for bicycling matters in the city, has scheduled a special meeting this Wednesday, April 6, to review Bike Planning and Environmental Review, towards legislative reform of LOS ("Level of Service") as a planning metric, understood to be an obstacle to safer, more accessible streets for bikes (and peds and transit and seniors and people, in general): It will take place this Wednesday at 6:15pm at City Hall, Room 263. The agenda is available here. The SFBC will be asking the following questions: Is LOS a real obstacle to safer streets and calmer neighborhoods, and how can we get more of the SF Bike Network completed (along with other improvements to public health and safety) where LOS and environmental review are indeed complicating factors? Click here for more resources on this topic.
BIKE ED ON ROAD COURSE APRIL 23RD (NOT APRIL 16TH)
The Tube Times mistakenly listed the April on-road Bike Ed course as being on April 16th, but it will actually be held Saturday, April 23rd out of the Park Branch Library. The Bike Ed On-Road course is open to those who have completed Day 1 Street Skills, and is an opportunity to put into practice the concepts taught in the Street Skills course. The April 23rd course is filling up rapidly, so sign up today! See sfbike.org/edu for online registration and calendar of other classes.
TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY ANNOUNCES GEARY BUS RAPID TRANSIT WORKSHOPS IN APRIL
The SF County Transportation Authority (TA) recently announced the first series of public workshops for the Geary Corridor Bus Rapid Transit Study. The objectives of the workshops are to introduce the Geary Corridor BRT Study; define Bus Rapid Transit; report on the study findings; and hear community feedback on transportation needs and opportunities. The same presentation will be repeated at all three workshops on April 13th, 14th, and 16th. For details about workshops, and the project in general,see GearyBRT.org.
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