Monday, April 30, 2012
Friday, April 27, 2012
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Many of you were involved with the Indiana Bicycle Commuter Challenge that Bicycle Indiana Sponsored Last year. We logged a crap load of miles and trips and the Fort Wayne Bike Commuters beat every team in the state!
It doesn't really matter that we won, the best part was getting a bunch of out there thinking about commuting by bike to work, the store, everywhere.
I just signed up HERE.
Kept the original team name, Fort Wayne Bike Commuters if you wanna join a team.
So get out there and log some miles/trips! Starts May 1!
Need more info? Check the Bike Fort Wayne Facebook page.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Monday, April 23, 2012
Sunday, April 22, 2012
Friday, April 20, 2012
I posted this a couple years ago but I felt that it needed some more playtime!
Thursday, April 19, 2012
A Biking Crash-Test Dummy Could Make Us Smarter About Cycling
The dummy, a project of engineering students at Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, is the first of its kind, and it could reveal some very interesting data about what happens to cyclists’ bodies when they hit the pavement.
Crash-test dummies for cars don’t measure the same kind of impacts that bike riders face, according to an article about the project in the Ottawa Citizen:
When engineers crash a car, they use one type of dummy for a frontal crash, and a different type for an impact from the side. Neither type is considered quite right for a cyclist who hits something, or slams on the front brakes hard, and flies over the handlebars….With bike share on its way to the two biggest cities in the United States, New York and Los Angeles, cycling safety will be an increasingly mainstream concern. For now, the biking dummy may just be a student project. But it could develop into a useful tool that would provide hard data on, among other things, the much-disputed value of helmets. Bike riders deserve to be taken seriously as road users, and a scientifically accurate dummy can help to make that case.
The dummy wears a helmet. But like a human cyclist, it keeps the important stuff inside its head.
This includes one sensor that deforms under the force of impact, to show the stress that a real cyclist would endure.
The Ottawa Sun has a video of a crash test.
Photo credit: Fotocrisis /Shutterstock
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Want more bikers? Build more bike lanes.
Yet in a new study (pdf) in the journal Transport Policy, Ralph Buehler and John Pucher suggest that cities might actually be able to influence how many cyclists are on the road. Perhaps all they have to do is — and this shouldn’t come as a huge surprise — build more bike lanes and bike paths.
Buehler and Pucher found that the presence of off-road bike paths and on-street bike lanes were, by far, the biggest determinant of cycling rates in cities. And that’s true even after you control for a variety of other factors like how hot or cold a city is, how much rain falls, how dense the city is, how high gas prices are, the type of people that live there, or how safe it is to cycle. None of those things seem to matter quite as much. The results, the authors write, “are consistent with the hypothesis that bike lanes and bike paths encourage cycling.”
If that sounds overly obvious, the authors do note that previous research was somewhat scattered on this question. A few studies had found that more bike lanes in a city were associated with more cycling, though it was unclear which was causing which. Perhaps cities were building bike lanes because they already had a group of devoted cyclists. And this causation question still hasn’t been fully settled, but Buehler and Pucher’s regression analyses — going through a dataset of 90 of the 100 largest U.S. cities — suggest that the relationship between bike lanes and cycling is quite robust. (Previous studies on biking had often just looked at single cities in isolation.)
The question, they note, is an important one because of a “mounting body of evidence” that encouraging bike commuting can improve health, reduce pollution, and other fatalities.
Note also that the United States is still very different from Europe in that regard. Portland is the most bike-friendly major city in the United States, but just 4.2 percent of commuters in that city bike to work. In Copenhagen, Denmark, that number’s hovering around 37 percent. And Copenhagen gets a fair bit chillier than Portland for part of the year, consistent with Buehler and Pucher’s hypothesis that weather doesn’t seem to affect cycling rates very much.
Monday, April 16, 2012
With all of the financial struggles that the City of Detroit is going through, it is so awesome that Mayor Bing's Administration recognizes the value of bicycle infrastructure! Decisions like these assure me that Detroit will thrive in the future. Cities that don't plan? Who knows.
Thursday, April 12, 2012
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
I am glad I did.
I was buzzed (passed unsafely) by a driver on the Columbia Bridge. I was cursed at by another driver on the same 12 second trip across the bridge as well.
Once off the bridge and heading down Columbia toward Lakeside Park, I was buzzed two more times and cursed at two other times as well. All this within 1 mile of my workplace!
It had been a long time since I was treated so poorly by drivers here in Fort Wayne.
Did the full moon have anything to do with it?
Careful out there
Monday, April 9, 2012
Do we want to keep doing the same old, same old?
Or as a community, can we choose to see the writing on the wall and look toward the future?
I believe that it will take civil rights lawsuits in order to change the way money is spent on Transportation.
Thursday, April 5, 2012
Most of you are probably aware of this but just in case, here you go.
Tuesday, April 3, 2012
A woonerf is a low-speed street where pedestrians and cyclists have legal priority over drivers. In practice, cars, bikes and people on foot mix freely. Unlike a standard woonerf, Pennsylvania Avenue doesn’t have regular drivers, but it has taken on many of the elements of the woonerf. Security needs can also close them at a moment’s notice. Therefore, I like to call this a “security woonerf.”
The political forces that want to steer policies back to the 1950s—when cars and highways were seen as the only way to go—have consistently failed to muster enough votes to shift federal transportation funding into reverse. There are several reason for this, but one of the most surprising is the emergence of bicycle advocates—and to a lesser extent pedestrian advocates—as a persuasive political lobby.
While Congressional critics belittle bicyclists as a marginal, almost silly special interest group, others herald them as self-reliant citizens who get around without the need of imported oil and mega-highway projects that cost taxpayers billions. Instead of a boondoggle, continued funding to improve biking and walking conditions in the U.S. represents a sound investment that saves taxpayers money now and in the future.