Monday, April 30, 2012

Women in Cycling: Barriers and Breakthroughs

The first ever National Women’s Cycling Forum took place at the recent National Bike Summit in Washington, D.C., with a follow-up “webinar” on March 28 to broaden awareness and participation in the discussion of how to get more women using bicycles as transportation. Read more.

Calgary - St. Patrick's Island plans unveiled

The revamped park will feature new pathways, a small amphitheatre, a watercraft launching and landing area, a river-side beach and concession stands, according to the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation (CMLC), which is in charge of the project. Read more.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

The International Transport Forum

The International Transport Forum will be taking place in Leipzig from April 30-May 2, gathering 53 National Transport Ministers, the world’s leading thinkers, CEOs, politicians and academics to discuss transport. This year’s focus will be on “Seamless Transport”. Read more - video also.

Owen Sound - Council to push for bike lanes along highway

The Ministry of Transportation has begun laying the groundwork for major road work during the summer of 2013 between Springmount and Hepworth. Bicycle lanes are not part of the plan yet, but they will be if Georgian Bluffs council gets its way. Read more.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bike boulevard planned for Saskatoon

Saskatoon's first "Bike Boulevard" will be a continuous pathway that provides right-of-way to cyclists, leading them west from Idylwyld Drive, along 23rd Street West and connecting to a multi-use path to Betts Avenue. Read more.

2012 Nova Scotia Cycling Summit

On behalf of the 2012 Nova Scotia Cycling Summit: Creating a Cycling Culture organizing committee and the Lunenburg-Queens Recreation Directors Association, we are please to invite you to join us at this year's Summit in Mahone Bay on May 5.

Session highlights include:

  • Creating champions of Change
  • Women in Cycling
  • Retailers Panel
  • Cycling Tourism
  • Land-use agreements
  • Kids in Cycling
  • Bicycling Nova Scotia Strategic Planning

The full agenda and an online version of the registration form are also available at:

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Pedestrian bridges that make an artful connection

Pedestrian bridges that make an artful connection - Daring, innovative pedestrian bridges are popping up across Canada, with Calgary and Toronto at the forefront of the growing trend to give new recognition to those who commute on foot or by bike.

European Parliament Postpones Decision on E-Bike Power

European Parliament Postpones Decision on E-Bike Power - The decision on the possible increase of motor power for electric bikes is expected not earlier then July 3, 2012. Currently work is being done to get to a so-called first-reading agreement. According to Annick Roetynck, general secretary of the European dealer association ETRA, such an agreement will ensure that the European Council will immediately accept the decision taken by the Parliament.

Lowering Toronto speed limits means we're going back to the future

Lowering Toronto speed limits means we're going back to the future - Why don’t we just bring back the horse and buggy and ban cars all together? What’s next? No elevators because they don’t encourage fitness? No park benches that create a relaxed, if not lazy, park goer? If this crazy anti-speed limit does find its way into law and suddenly Toronto roads have speed limits of 30 km/h and 40 km/h, watch out.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Bicycling: Health Risk or Benefit?

Bicycling: Health Risk or Benefit? - In the last decade, there has been new interest in promoting cycling as a mode of transportation in North America. In this article, we focus on the health elements of the controversy: what are the potential benefits of cycling; what are the risks; and do the benefits outweigh the risks?

As Traffic Snarls Brazil's Cities, Officials Plan For More Cars

As Traffic Snarls Brazil's Cities, Officials Plan For More Cars - To say that São Paulo has a lot of traffic would be an understatement. Fed up with traffic, the city's wealthiest citizens have taken to the air, making São Paulo's helicopter fleet the largest in the world. But for Paulistas who can't launch themselves into the sky every morning, solutions on the ground are urgently needed.

Winnipeg must become pedestrian-friendly

Winnipeg must become pedestrian-friendly - Why is it that Winnipeg seems so anti-pedestrian? The truth, at least since the 1960s, is when it comes to facilitating the movement of people on its streets, Winnipeg, unfortunately, has treated its pedestrians as an afterthought when compared to its citizens who drive vehicles. Traffic management generally has been focused on enabling vehicles to get from one end of the city to the other in record time.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Sudbury - City has the plan, but no money

Though council has already endorsed the 30-year master plan, its proponents were back asking for support for 25 action items that can be done at "low to no cost" in the first year. The items span the plan's three themes: Activity and growth; Access and connectivity; and Beauty and pride.

While enthusiastic about the downtown master plan and the many projects that will drive it over the next few years, councillors expressed concerns about costs. There's no funding and -- though it would be nice -- no massive lottery windfall available to build these things, Ward 3 Coun. Claude Berthiaume said.

At Summit, PBOT Director announces new 10% bike mode split goal

During a speech at the Oregon Active Transportation Summit in Salem yesterday, PBOT Director Tom Miller made the unexpected announcement that PBOT will soon roll out a formal 10% bike mode split goal, a step in accountability he says is unprecedented.

Count down to Velo-city Vancouver 2012

The program overview for the upcoming Velo-city Global bicycle planning conference is now live. You can view it on the Velo-city Global website here.

Westmount QC - On the road to …

2012 is official the “year of traffic” in Westmount with the submission by Genivar, consultants hired by the City, of their initial findings in their studies for the “Traffic and Active Transportation Master Plan”. The last time Westmount took on an undertaking like this was over 20 years ago. A lot has changed since then, especially with the burgeoning of the suburbs – both on- and off-island.

Open street Sundays could be happening soon in Halifax

Closing several streets to traffic and opening them up to active transportation on a quiet Sunday afternoon might happen in Halifax this fall.

Essex County moves forward with transportation study

A study on active transportation may not end up sitting on a shelf collecting dust at the Essex County civic centre after all.

Calgary - Southeast transitway project awaits detailed cost estimate

Local businesses have been long buzzing about long-awaited plans to create a transit-, pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly corridor serving 17th Avenue S.E., or International Avenue. Plans include buses and bus stations, bike lanes, wider sidewalks and boulevards to improve access and encourage pedestrians to visit. The estimated price tag for all phases is $300 million.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Video - Building a Bike Highway

"Instead of relegating cyclists to side streets and bike paths, the new bikeways would take over major Portland thoroughfares, making bikes more visible and creating more direct routes that would shorten ride times. Witnessing the shift from streets of mostly cars to mostly bikes will also start to create a sense that riders are prized and protected as a major transportation solution, not forced to stay in painted lanes.”

The Crisis in American Walking

[This] is what walking in America has become: An act dwelling in the margins, an almost hidden narrative running beneath the main vehicular text. Indeed, the semantics of the term pedestrian would be a mere curiosity, but for one fact: America is a country that has forgotten how to walk.

Comox BC - Council agrees to cover bridge design costs

Courtenay Council has agreed to find the $70,000 needed to prepare plans for a covered pedestrian and cycling bridge spanning the river from the foot of Sixth Street to Simms Park.

European Greenways Iinfo: March 2012

You can download the new Info European Greenways (issue 14) (En)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Saanich BC - Planning is key to urban environment

Security should be key in designing our roads. Off-road bicycle paths protect cyclists better from accidents. The proposed upgrades are the ideal opportunity to encourage Saanich and the University of Victoria to develop and adopt greener transit.

Edmonton - Jasper Avenue gets a makeover

Parking will be banned at peak periods to maintain the current number of through lanes, although there may be delays in some places because buses will have to stop at curbs to pick up passengers. The extra room will be used to improve walkability by widening sidewalks to six metres from four metres.

Latest Calgary bridge brainwave a headscratcher

If it were only a little taller, infuriated taxpayers might at least get some use out the latest spending fiasco awaiting the rubber stamp at city hall. There’ll certainly be plenty of Calgarians who feel like taking a leap of frustration, after learning of yet another pointless infrastructure project to be built in this supposedly broke city.

Thunder Bay - The sidewalk ‘myth’

Thunder Bay will be getting a couple new bike lanes this summer located mostly in Current River. The bike lanes will be placed on Shuniah Street, Hudson Avenue, Arundel Street and Huron Avenue and a bike lane in the south core on Vickers Street.

Halifax - Council ponders route for bicycle corridor

The public has had its say. Now it’s up to Halifax regional council to come up with a route for a bike corridor to run in a north-south direction through Halifax.  Four routes — the Connaught Avenue corridor, the Windsor Street-Vernon Street corridor, the Agricola Street-Young Avenue corridor and the Novalea Drive-Gottingen Street corridor — are being considered, but it could even be a slightly different route.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Video - 25 ways to cross a major road by bicycle, 's-Hertogenbosch (Netherlands)

Major roads can be major barriers for cyclists, but they do not need to be. There are 25 places for cyclists to cross the major roads around the city of 's-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands. There are overpasses and underpasses and even one level crossing, Some are combined solutions for motorized traffic as well and some for pedestrians.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Everyone Benefits When More People Bike and Walk

For the past year powerful voices around Washington have singled out programs to improve biking and walking as flagrant examples of wasteful government spending.

Skateboarding professor becomes Internet sensation

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln classics and religious studies professor became an Internet sensation Wednesday when a photo of him skateboarding across campus became the top item on the social news website The photo inspired dozens of memes -- photos with humorous text superimposed.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Canada’s first-ever physical activity and sedentary behaviour guidelines for the early years released

Children aged four and under should move more and sit less every day as recommended by the first-ever Canadian Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines for the Early Years. All children aged one to four should accumulate at least 180 minutes of physical activity throughout the day, and children under the age of one should be physically active several times daily. Parents and caregivers should also limit prolonged sitting for more than one hour at a time and excessive screen time.

Physical Activity Tracking App

[And here is a recently developed Canadian smart-phone app that tracks physical activity, among other lifestyle items. For those - like me - who like to keep track of their diet and exercise. -MH]

SlimKicker is a level-up game that turns your weight loss goals into a winnable game, tracking diet and physical activity.

Ottawa - Bank Street design plan works:community association

The plan, which covers a 3.2-kilometre stretch of Bank Street between the Rideau River and the Canadian National Railway tracks south of Walkley Road, calls for three nodes of intensive transit-oriented redevelopment with taller buildings housing commercial, office and residential uses.

Creating cycling and pedestrian links is a big part of encouraging those hubs to develop with a mix of businesses and housing, according to the plan. The goal is to keep that section of Bank Street as a commercial strip, but add more vibrancy and foot-traffic to the street by allowing housing and offices to also be built along Bank. Cycling lanes along the length of Bank Street would help that effort, and are recommended in the plan.

3 new walking paths at Indianapolis International Airport helps travelers gain fitness

Travelers and employees at Indianapolis International Airport have three new walking paths to stretch their legs and improve their health. The airport and the American Heart Association opened the paths Wednesday on the day the association has dubbed National Walking Day.

Wellington ON - Active transportation study looking for public input in three public meetings

The county is now in the second stage of the County-wide Active Transportation Master Plan with the goal of creating and improving opportunities throughout Wellington County for active forms of transportation such as walking, running, hiking and cycling.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Study says five unhealthy lifestyle choices are killing Ontarians faster

A new study says there are five things killing Ontario residents more than seven years earlier.Those bad lifestyle choices include:
  • Smoking.
  • Drinking alcohol.
  • Poor diet.
  • Lack of physical activity.
  • Stress.
Researchers found 60 per cent of all deaths in Ontario can be blamed on those five unhealthy habits.