Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Best Thing My City Did This Year

Writers, urban planners, and local governmentistas in 20 U.S. cities shared with us the best thing their city did this year. See how many are about walking and cycling.

Sick of congestion? Build roads, not transit

 As urban geographer Wendell Cox likes to say, this idea that road construction only worsens congestion is like believing that building more maternity wards will cause more babies to be born. Read more.

This Bike Suit Makes You Look Like a Marvel Superhero

The futuristic garb, only slightly less ridiculous than actual Lycra bike clothes, is the product of a collaboration between Austrian designer Utope and Berlin research concern Fraunhofer IZM. An award-winning entry at the 2013 Red Dot design contest, the suit is intended to increase cyclists' safety while making them look like they stumbled out of a video game. Read more.

The answer to congestion is not to build roads and encourage sprawl. It's to get people out of their cars

There is pretty much a consensus that sprawl is not a good thing for the people who live in it, the communities and governments that have to provide services to it, those concerned about climate and the CO2 emitted by the people driving to it. Then along comes Brian Lee Crowley of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, an "independent non-partisan public policy think tank." He thinks sprawl is wonderful because it spreads everyone out and gives them so many more roads to drive on. Read more.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Fourteen ways to fix the GTA in 2014

Transit, bike lanes, community interaction, a boost for the music scene ... oh, and did we mention transit? The Globe and Mail asked planners, mayors, city-builders and visionaries to share their big ideas to improve the GTA in 2014. Read more.

Australia - Cycling goes through a gear change

In the 1990s, cycling seemed serious and Lycra-clad. But its forbidding nature has been overtaken by the birth of a buoyant urban bike culture that has altered what we ride, wear - even where we "caffeinate". Read more.

A Tax On Cycling: Too Steep A Hill To Climb Or Just Around The Corner?

As city governments are pressed to provide safe bike lanes and bike-sharing programs in hopes of reducing gridlock and placating resident cycling enthusiasts, costs devoted to a once-secondary class of transportation are rising dramatically. Pile these expenses on top of the customary budgetary costs of police, education, and Godzilla defense, and cities country-wide are searching for additional sources of revenue. And in many cases, that search is landing squarely on the city’s helmet-donning denizens. Read more.

Friday, December 27, 2013

New York - Mayor Bloomberg's aggressive traffic policies have caused massive drop in traffic deaths

The increased safety — traffic deaths are down more than 30% from 2001 — came about because of a sweeping and aggressive program carried out by Bloomberg’s Department of Transportation. It involved redesigning dangerous intersections and boulevards, imposing 20-mph speed zones around schools, widening sidewalks, extending street crossing times for pedestrians, installing speed-enforcement cameras and creating the nation’s first protected bicycle lanes. Read more.

San Francisco Added to a Burgeoning 'Street View for Bikes'

Dutch start-up Cyclodeo has just released a new collection of geo-tagged bike route videos covering the city of San Francisco. The route videos build on an existing database that includes Eindhoven, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and New York City. Read more.

How Uber could reinforce car culture

But just because we're driving less doesn't necessarily signal the end of car culture — that collection of values expressed in our infrastructure and land-use policy that has favored the automobile for decades. Even as more people flock to urban areas, we're still stuck with many Cold War-era artifacts of urban planning. Read more.

In a Car-Culture Clash, It’s the Los Angeles Police vs. Pedestrians

In a city of seemingly endless highways — with its daily parade of car accidents, frustrating traffic jams and aggressive drivers — the Los Angeles Police Department these days is training its sights on a different road menace: jaywalkers. Read more.

Choosing to bike or walk will save money

There is overwhelming evidence that improving pedestrian and bicycling infrastructure is a healthy, cost-effective and economically beneficial way to improve transportation choices and build more livable cities. Read more.

Walking 2,000 Steps A Day Could Decrease Cardio Risks

Those who walk at least 2,000 steps a day could be at a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, according to a new study from researchers at the Centers for Disease Control. Read more.

Don’t mix bikes and politics

Trust me, a person can believe in climate change and wind power and still conclude that Rob Ford, Toronto’s Neanderthal mayor, had a point when he said: “Cyclists are a pain in the ass to the motorists.” Read more.

Whitehorse cyclists criticise plans for shared cycling, pedestrian paths

Whitehorse Cyclists Advocacy Group member David Simm said the group supported the first shared path concept, which included a 3m-wide path as part of a 10m-wide bio-link along the reserve's length. But he said the group believed the path offered in the Davy Lane and Community Use concepts, partially made up of a shared path and bike lanes on roads, would not be as safe. Read more.

As cycling in cities grows, so does temptation to tax bicycles

Who is paying for all this bicycle upkeep? And shouldn’t bicyclists be kicking in themselves? That is testing the vision of city leaders who are transforming urban expanses with bike lanes and other amenities in a quest for relevance, vitality and livability — with never enough funds. Read more.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Bike Curious: Seniors Discover a Bicycle Life

Without the burden of a car, we feel that our quality of life has been enhanced. The cost of maintaining our bicycles is nominal compared to owning a car. Now we can occasionally splurge on dinners, go out on dates, and attend cultural events. Living out of our panniers for more than a year on the road taught us that we could thrive on less of everything and still live comfortably. Read more.

11 Reasons Why Bicycling in the U.S. Is Exceptionally Dangerous

According to a new report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Americans are not only among the world’s least avid cyclists; they are also among the most likely to get killed. Read more.

Great News for Cyclists and Pedestrians in Nepean

The Nepean Trail cycling pathway will be improved in the upcoming version of the Transportation Master Plan. The idea, borne by a member of the Trend Arlington Community Association, was endorsed by the Knoxdale Merivale Council (KMC) and later championed by the ward councillor. Read more.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Support Cycling Advocacy and Research

Shell is spending $2 million annually on Canadian environmental organizations and initiatives, and Tour de Nuit (Calgary) expected to receive $100,000 to support our cycling advocacy work. Your vote will help. Once you have registered to vote you will start with 30 votes; you can acquire more votes from just one receipt at any Shell station.

Additional information can be found on the Tour de Nuit website.

WHO: Health in the Green Economy - Transport Sector

Cycling, walking and rapid transit systems are associated with a wide range of health benefits that need to be reflected more systematically in transport and development policies.

This report, part of the Health in the Green Economy series, considers evidence regarding health co-benefits, and risks, of climate change mitigation strategies for transport, as reviewed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Read more.

NYC DOT Publishes First-Ever Metric for Measuring Economic Benefits of Safer, More Sustainable Streets, Providing Innovative Planning and Outreach Toolkit for Cities Worldwide

The new report follows the earlier DOT models for tracking impacts in “Measuring the Street,” and the recent release of “Sustainable Streets: 2013 and Beyond,” which outlined safety and mobility benefits since 2007, including the 34% drop in fatalities at re-engineered corridors and intersections. Read more.

Is the 'Traditional Downtown' Dead?

Gen-X and the Millennials have much more optimistic and positive views of urban areas than baby boomers and previous generations. I think this results from the rupture that those earlier generations experienced when our urban cores declined. Read more.

Bikes and Barriers — Is it only the physical ones that matter to New Canadians?

While infrastructure investment is undeniably an important step in making cycling safe and attractive, recognizing that there are significant cultural and social barriers to adopting cycling for transportation is another important piece of the puzzle. Read more.

A Before-and-After Guide to Safer Streets

Last month, the New York City Department of Transportation released a brief-but-handy guide that uses before-and-after design renderings to illustrate five basic rules for street safety. Read more.

Velo-city Global Adelaide 2014 program goes LIVE...

With an overall theme of ‘Celebration of Cycling’ the Velo-city Global Adelaide 2014 program features high profile plenary speakers from almost every continent, and people with a huge diversity of expertise and great stories to tell from more than 40 countries. Read more.

Hantsport on board for active transportation plan

Hantsport’s town council is willing to commit about a dollar per resident toward a joint active transportation plan with Windsor and West Hants. Read more.

Conservatives’ new enemy: Bikes

Cyclists who have struggled to attract political attention might be surprised to hear themselves cast as an insidious new social force. But they can also see it as recognition that for better or worse, they have, politically, arrived. Read more.

The Walkability Dividend and the Age-Old Political Struggle

Every municipal service that cities provide today is the outcome of an earlier argument between people who wanted to improve urban quality of life and people who didn't want their taxes to go up. Read more.

A Little Less Driving Means Big Dividends For Local Economies

 If everyone in the 51 largest metro areas reduced driving by one mile per day on average, the U.S. as a whole could save $31 billion a year. Read more.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Who's behind those tags in D.C.'s bike lanes? And why does she want you to smile?

You’d notice them at reds as you braked at the mouth of an intersection. You’d look down, perhaps as you began to creep into the crosswalk, and spy the Day-Glo words on the asphalt: “Make Us Bicyclists Look Good.” And then, maybe, you’d stay put, waiting for that green. Read more.

Calgary - Controversial cycle lane boosts traffic flow

The controversial construction of a city bike lane has sped up vehicle traffic on the downtown road, city council says. Read more.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The 100 "Best" Books on City-Making Ever Written?

Here are 100 of Brent Toderian's favourite books on city-making that I’ve collected and read over the years. Many are quite old, but still completely relevant. Others are only a decade or two old, but may not as relevant as they once were... but they are included because they were very meaningful and valuable to me at the time I read them. Read more.

Bike vs. Car: Parking Spot Edition

This simple but clever design has been making its way around the world. A similar design by cyclehoop was originally commissioned for the 2010 London Festival of Architecture. It's also been spotted in Sweden.

Safer Streets Pay Off for Businesses

When policymakers think about changing a street, economic factors weigh heavily. Objections from business owners can prevent the installation of bike lanes, traffic-calming measures, and sensible parking pricing. Read more.

London ON - Cycling community gets support for separate advisory group

During the Strategic Priorities and Policy Committee meeting, members voted 11-4 to support the creation of a cycling advisory committee, while also calling on staff to revise the terms of reference for the existing Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC). Read more.

Why does cycling thrive in some cities and not in others?

So the question isn’t so much how to get people to cycle as how to get people who wouldn’t ordinarily cycle—such as women and old people—onto bikes. The first answer seems to be safety. Read more.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Cyclists cannot stop drivers overtaking dangerously, research suggests

A new study from the University of Bath and Brunel University suggests that no matter what clothing a cyclist wears, around 1-2% of drivers will pass dangerously close when overtaking. Read more.

Circular cycle bridge in the Dutch city of Eindhoven

The cable-stayed bridge, designed by ipv Delft, offers cyclists and pedestrians an exciting crossover. With its impressive pylon, 72 metre diameter, thin deck and conspicuous lighting, the cyclist roundabout is a new landmark for the city. See picture.

Census Data Shows Which Cities Encourage the Most Walking

Nationally, only a small fraction of people walk to work. But some cities' policy and planning efforts are making walking an everyday means of commuting. View data and maps for dozens of U.S. cities. Read more.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Ottawa receives silver-designation as a walk-friendly city

The City of Ottawa received a silver-level designation as a walk-friendly city by WALK Friendly Ontario – which is a recognition program that encourages municipalities to create and improve spaces and places to walk. This silver-level designation is the highest level awarded so far by the program – with only Ottawa and Hamilton receiving those honours. Read more.

Snow-clogged bike lanes frustrate Calgary cyclists

Members of Calgary’s cycling community say the city isn’t doing a good enough job of clearing snow from designated bike lanes and that’s putting cyclists at risk. Read more.

Biking in New York in 1897 Was a Dangerous Pursuit

Even with the undeniable progress that's been made creating safer spaces for bicycles and pedestrians, traffic remain aggressive and unpredictable. Users of all modes break the rules with abandon. Navigating the resulting mess is not for the fainthearted.

But if you think things were better before the advent of the automobile, you're wrong. On the excellent blog From Wheels to Bikes, Michael Neubert digs deep, chronicling the mayhem that reigned during one random month in 1897. Read more.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Goodbye Car Lanes: Madrid Wants To Take Back Streets For Pedestrians

Twenty four of the city's busiest streets are going to be redesigned for walking, rather than driving. It's a growing trend in urban centers around the world, but this policy could prove a big test. Read more.

Chicago speed cameras reduce speeding 65 percent in less than two months

The Chicago Department of Transportation recently announced that its first nine speed cameras had done something remarkable: Reduced speeding at those locations by 65 percent in less than two months. Read more.

America’s 10 best protected bike lanes of 2013

Two years ago, PeopleForBikes launched the Green Lane Project to help focus attention and expertise around something that we decided was going to be the next big thing in city biking: the protected bike lane. As the thermoplastic dries on this year's round of terrific protected bike lane projects, we decided to scour the country for a comprehensive (and subjective) ranking of the best of the best. Read more.

How The Cost of Other People's Parking Drives Up Your Rent

Quite literally, however, you may also pay for parking – whether you use it or not – in your basic monthly expenses. If you live in an apartment complex that includes parking (even parking that comes with an extra fee), its costs are likely tucked into your rent. Read more.

Calgary - 50 bikes recovered, 17 arrests made in police operation

Calgary police have recovered more than 50 stolen bikes and laid charges against 17 suspects. The arrests came after a two-month investigation involving several police units that focused on the downtown core and the Beltline district. Read more.

Walk Your Way to Health

Researchers have discovered a "wonder drug" for many of today’s most common medical problems, says Dr. Bob Sallis, a family practitioner at a Kaiser Permanente clinic in Fontana, California. It’s been proven to help treat or prevent diabetes, depression, dementia, breast and colon cancer, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, obesity, anxiety and osteoporosis, Sallis told a packed room of leaders at the 2013 Walking Summit. "The drug is called walking," Sallis announced. "Its generic name is physical activity." Read more.

Video - Have You Seen the Latest Bicycle Wheel? It’s Simply Incredible

MIT presents: a smart wheel which replaces your rear and does much more than you’re thinking. The capabilities of this revolutionary design will convince many to rethink the way they commute. See video.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

French Transport Ministry Plans Co-financing of Regional Cycling Routes

In a response to a parliamentary question by socialist deputy Philippe Plisson, the French transport ministry has recently confirmed that the national government plans to co-finance regional cycling plans from 2014-2020. Read more.

How a Few Dutch Children Fought for a Street Where They Could Play, and Won

In 1972, a group of young schoolchildren in rundown central Amsterdam banded together to demand a play street. In this excerpt from a documentary that aired on Dutch television at the time, you can see them marching for their right to run around without fear of automobiles. Read more.

Iceland has heated sidewalks, why not Edmonton?

Should Edmonton be looking at heating downtown sidewalks and streets to clear them of ice and snow in the winter? The idea is officially part of the city's winter strategy calling for pilot projects of heating sidewalks in downtown business zones. Read more.

10 Classy Gift Ideas (For People That Ride a Bike)

Looking for a fun gift for your bicycle-riding friend or loved one? Here's a list of our top 10 picks for gifts this holiday season. Read more.

London's Bike-Share Crisis

Something is going badly wrong with London's bike-share scheme. Read more.

Ottawa - Cycling and the Law

On Wednesday November 27th, I attended a forum on cycling, the law, and your rights in an accident. Presenters included a member of the Ottawa Police Services, a tort lawyer, and representatives of the insurance industry. Read more.

Calgary - Cycling strategy continues to move forward

Year three of Calgary’s cycling strategy saw some notable advancements towards the goal of making this a bike-friendly community. Read more.

We're driving less, taking transit more. Now let's invest accordingly.

A comprehensive new analysis of government data demonstrates that Americans are driving less per person, and taking transit more, both overall and in a strong majority of our large metro areas.  Especially because the new report is consistent with a multitude of information showing changes in living patterns and lifestyle preferences, we should shift more public resources into transit, to keep up with and strengthen the trends toward more sustainable modes of transportation. Read more.

Vancouver's growth propelled by the dynamic of a new generation

With a shrug that amounts to a tectonic demographic shift, millennials – especially in Metro Vancouver – are rejecting their parents’ suburban commuting lifestyle in favour of “live/work/play” neighbourhoods. Read more.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Why Cul-de-Sacs Are Bad for Your Health

Of every 100 American commuters, five take public transit, three walk, and only one rides a bicycle to work or school. If walking and cycling are so pleasurable, why don’t more people choose to cycle or walk to work? Why do most people fail to walk even the 10,000 daily steps needed to stay healthy? Why do we avoid public transit? Read more.

Sean Carter's Winter Cycling Tips

For many Calgary cyclists, the first snow of the season means it's time for their bikes to get tucked away in garages and storage rooms to hibernate for the winter. There are also those hardy riders who keep cycling year round. Read more.

Democracy Is Bus-Only Lanes and Protected Bikeways

In a TED talk posted yesterday (but filmed in September), Peñalosa pushes the boundaries of what most people think is possible in a city. Reserve every other street for transit, bikes, and pedestrians? Dedicate bus-only lanes in dense, congested cities? It’s not only possible, Peñalosa says, it’s also necessary for a healthy democracy. Read more.

Huron County Promotes Active Transportation

The Huron County Health Unit is working on a project to promote active transportation. They are trying to promote things like biking, jogging, hiking and the use of trails as much as possible. Read more.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Complete Streets: Why America Needs the Safe Streets Act of 2013

Metropolitan regions added tens of millions of housing units that lacked access to public transportation, sidewalks, and other pedestrian amenities. Even today, almost one-third of Americans live in neighborhoods without sidewalks. Finding a safe and convenient place to walk, bike, or access public transportation can be a challenge.

The Safe Streets Act of 2013, introduced by Reps. Doris Matsui (D-CA) and David Joyce (R-OH), addresses this unintended consequence of our transportation policy by requiring states and metro regions to design their roadways to safely accommodate all system users, regardless of age or ability level. Read more.

Distracted Driving Pedestrian and Cycling Death Continues to Increase

A new study released by the Public Health Reports claims that pedestrian deaths caused by distracted driving have increased by over 50% in a five year period.  The amount of cyclists killed by distracted driving accidents has amplified by 30% over the past five years. Read more.

Distracted Driving Pedestrian and Cycling Death Continues to Increase

A new study released by the Public Health Reports claims that pedestrian deaths caused by distracted driving have increased by over 50% in a five year period.  The amount of cyclists killed by distracted driving accidents has amplified by 30% over the past five years. Read more.

San Diego OKs plan to double bicycle network

San Diego’s support for bicycling whooshed forward Monday with the adoption of a blueprint that calls for doubling the city’s bicycle network during the next 20 years. The City Council unanimously approved the San Diego Bicycle Master Plan Update, which builds on the city’s original bicycle plan of 2002. Read more.

Suwon citizens chart future course following inaugural EcoMobility World Festival

The Festival sparked the conversion of Haenggung-dong into an ecomobile neighborhood during September 2013, implementing a car-free environment which saw 4,300 residents relinquish their automobiles and instead walk, cycle and use ecomobile vehicles in carrying out their daily routines. Read more.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Join the #RaceForChange community

Right To Play is proud to announce our involvement for the second year as a charitable partner for seven races across Canada. We’re inviting runners of all ages and stages to join our #RaceForChange community, where racers can swap stories, motivate and inspire each other on the road to personal success with a shared goal of raising vital funds for Right To Play. Read more.

Video - Riding the Bike Share Boom

Without a doubt, 2013 has been a banner year for bike-share in the United States. Major systems were implemented in New York City and Chicago, and many others debuted or expanded in other cities. In fact, Citi Bike users have biked over 10 million miles and the system is closing in on 100,000 annual members. This video features a dozen bike-share systems and captures footage from an unprecedented number of bike-share cities in any one film. See video.

Baltimore's Got Some Playful New 'Hopscotch Crosswalks'

In Baltimore, the well-worn zebra crosswalk just got a whimsical facelift. Recently, the city unveiled a set of new "hopscotch crosswalks" at an intersection by the historic Bromo Selzer Arts Tower. Read more.

Momentum Mag Issue 64 – The Travel Issue

In this issue you'll discover how to ride all winter as we investigate how cities can support winter riding for everyone. Get an uncomplicated look at riding through your first winter and many more to come. Plus: 2014 Trend Report featuring new city bikes and gear, yoga for city riding, great gear for under $100, helping a child love biking, Youth Bike Summit, Detroit Bikes, and more. Read more.

Torontonians living far from transit, without a car

A conference organized by Toronto Chief Planner Jennifer Keesmaat unveiled a striking statistic, online magazine Yonge Street reported last week: 60 per cent of people living in eight so-called tower neighbourhoods in the inner suburbs don’t have drivers’ licenses. Read more.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

School Travel Planning Toolkit

School Travel Planning Guide and Tools: Webinar Training Session. A step-by-step overview of the STP Guide and complete toolkit - recommended for training purposes. Read more.

Urban or suburban? The sprawl debate

 For Sarrazin-Sullivan, the shine that draws many to the suburbs is more of a stain. “There’s no way,” she said. “I walk. I bike to work. I spend a lot of time with the kids, and I don’t sit in traffic forever twice a day. So, for me, there’s no other choice.” Read more.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Driving Is Going Out of Style

A new study from U.S. PIRG gives us perhaps the most detailed yet look at the "peak car" phenomenon whereby America's passenger-miles driven keeps falling. As Ashley Halsey writes, perhaps the most important contention of the report is "data that show the cities with the biggest drop in driving suffered no greater unemployment peaks than those cities where driving declined the least." Read more.

Pedestrian fatalities in Toronto hit 10-year high

Elderly pedestrians are taking the brunt of the increase, with 20 seniors killed on the streets of Toronto this year compared with six at this time last year. Read more.

Canadian Municipal Active Transportation Policy Map Webinar

The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer will host a one-hour webinar on Canadian municipal active transportation policy and a new tool, the Canadian Municipal Active Transportation Policy Map, supporting active transportation policy work. Read more.

Antigonish - “Response is slow for Active Transportation Plan“

The recreation director for the County Of Antigonish says a green partnership with the town will hopefully soon take flight. Read more.

Cargo bikes the new minivan for cycling families

Cyclists are pushing the limits of what they can haul on cargo bikes - sturdy two-wheelers built to haul lots of stuff. The so-called SUV of bicycles are increasingly popular in pedal-friendly communities. Read more.

Friday, December 6, 2013

A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety

U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration: A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety provides guidance for maintaining pedestrian facilities with the primary goal of increasing safety and mobility. The Guide addresses the needs for pedestrian facility maintenance; common maintenance issues; inspection, accessibility, and compliance; maintenance measurers; funding; and construction techniques to reduce future maintenance. Read more.

Crosswalk safety under scrutiny in Halifax: ‘We have to share this road space, and be safe’

The professor leading a review of thousands of collision reports across Nova Scotia says it confirms that reducing pedestrian-vehicle collisions is a shared responsibility. “Both user types should be very cautious in making connections when they are crossing those crosswalks,” said Dr. Ahsan Habib, director of the Dalhousie Transportation Collaboratory. “We have to share this road space, and be safe.” Read more.

Must Read: The Bike Share Planning Guide

It's not easy to set up a bike share system. Some have been wildly successful; others are disasters and more are disasters waiting to happen. Cities are willing to subsidize transit and fix roads on the taxpayers nickel, but baulk at the idea that bike share systems should be anything but self-supporting. People complain that the bike stands are ugly and that the bikes clog the road, and that all those tourists and novice riders are accidents waiting to happen. Read more.

Bike Share and Helmet Laws: An Uncomfortable Relationship

Injury rates among bike share users are much lower than among general riders. Helmet use is significantly lower for bike sharers, too. A study of Boston and Washington, DC, found that while about half of all riders on their own bikes donned head protection, only one in five bike share users chose to wear a helmet. Read more.

The World's Top 7 Bike-Share Systems

If you want to have a great bike-share program in your city, a few factors are key, according to a report just out from the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. They include:
  • Lots of densely situated stations, ideally no more than about 325 yards apart
  • Many bikes (10-30 per 1,000 residents in the coverage area)
  • A sweeping coverage area that's more than six square miles
  • Solid, usable bikes with hardware that discourages theft
  • Easy-to-use stations and payment systems
If you don't have enough bikes and stations in a wide enough area, you're setting a system up for failure. Read more.

Saving Lives with Sustainable Transport

While sustainable transport initiatives are usually proposed and evaluated based on their impact on travel times, local air quality, accessibility, or greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, their potential traffic safety impacts are often overlooked. Read more.

London begins labeling the physical world with calorie loss indicators


Each poster features a QR code and NFC tag, enabling those with smartphones to log, track and share their calorie burning with friends. According to StepJockey, the signs were developed using the principles of behavioral science, and tests proved that the nudge to take the stairs improved usage by up to 29 percent in some cases. Read more.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Nova Scotia - Helmet Law Effective at Reducing Head and Brain Injuries

The following is an op-ed from Health and Wellness Minister Leo Glavine. Recently, some Nova Scotians have been making the news for their objection to the law requiring them to wear helmets while riding bicycles. Read more.

Building a Year-Round Bike Culture in a City That Gets 88 Inches of Snow a Year

One of the cities working the hardest is the Canadian capital of Ottawa. There, the city has been building and planning bike infrastructure at a steady clip. The new nonprofit Ottawa Bicycle Lanes Project is part of a robust grassroots effort to promote cycling as a reasonable way to get around. Read more.

Watch These Little Girls In Afghanistan Be Better At Skateboarding Than You'll Ever Be

Whatever you do, don't stop the video before you get past minute 1:15. That's when things really start to get going.

Research Paper - Business Performance in Walkable Shopping Areas

Walkable commercial districts are a key component of communities that promote active living. Walking has great health benefits, including helping people maintain a healthy weight. This report examines whether there are also economic benefits to businesses in walkable communities. The study consisted of a meta-analysis of 70 studies and articles. However, there have been few studies that address economic performance directly and the author conducted an exploratory study of 15 walkable shopping areas judged as successful to examine the sources of success. Read more.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Shift to green transport makes city residents happier, richer

Across the world, cities are making their transport systems more environmentally friendly. They are revamping bus services to be faster and more reliable, introducing bike-sharing schemes, putting in cycle lanes and reducing the number of cars on the road.

At the same time, the world’s population is becoming increasingly urban. For the first time ever, more people now live in cities than in the country. A larger urban population requires more and better public transportation, and improved road management. Read more.

A Bus Rider’s Frustration With Transit Planners

The people doing transit planning where Nick Magrino lives aren’t paying attention to the basics, he says. And he thinks one reason is that they simply don’t ride the bus: Read more.

Video - Advocating for pedestrian safety in HRM

Wed, Dec 4: This week, three pedestrians have been hit while crossing the street in the Halifax-area. Pedestrian safety advocate Norm Collins shares his insights. See video.

Toronto - Bixi bike-sharing program to come under city's wing

The City of Toronto has announced a new plan to take control of the popular, but money-losing, Bixi bike-sharing program. Public Works chair Denzil Minnan-Wong announced Wednesday that control of the program will shift to the city's parking authority in the spring. Read more.

New bike bridge in Surrey divides a community

Some of those living near the ravine in North Surrey where the 200-foot-long cycling and pedestrian bridge is slated to be built worry about its safety – both the threat of neighbouring trees falling down and injuring somebody, and the risk the new span will bring unwanted criminal elements into their neighbourhood. Read more.

What Your Street Grid Reveals About Your City

Not all grids are created equal. Some shape a walking-friendly streetscape. Others, not so much. Over at the Strong Towns blog, Andrew Price, a software developer by day who blogs about urbanism, has been writing about the math of the grid and what it reveals about a city's economic productivity and walkability. Read more.

Baltimore's Got Some Playful New 'Hopscotch Crosswalks'

In Baltimore, the well-worn zebra crosswalk just got a whimsical facelift. Yesterday, the city unveiled a set of new "hopscotch crosswalks" at an intersection by the historic Bromo Selzer Arts Tower. Read more.

Winter cycling – what to wear, eat and put on your bike this winter

Winter doesn’t just bring cold weather; it also brings also sloppy conditions. Even with the best of gear, if you have no mud-guards, you’re rear and legs will be wet and cold.  Plus you need to protect your trusty ride, which is going to take a bit of a beating from snow, ice, salt and sand. Read more.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Ottawa - Airport Parkway pedestrian bridge to cost another $4.6M

Fixing the Airport Parkway pedestrian bridge will cost another $4.6 million, the city's finance and economic development committee (FEDCO) heard Tuesday. The bridge project was suspended in October to allow of a new team of engineers to determine how best to move forward after professional engineers raised concerns this summer about the bridge's stay supporting system and steel anchorage piece at the top of the tower. Read more.

Toronto - More density downtown will cut down on gridlock

Governments need to change the rules to encourage midrise. We have lots of space in downtowns. But we still think we can run the fourth-largest city in North America on low-density housing and cars.” “Until we do,” Burda says, “we’ll remain stuck in traffic.” Read more.

Bike-friendly Copenhagen faces cyclist backlash

In one of the world's best cities for bicycles, Copenhagen cyclists are earning a reputation for recklessness and arrogance, prompting calls for politicians to back-pedal on plans to further boost bike traffic. Read more.

New Equity Report: Engaging Youth

Chen worked with the League on a project-based, six-week, paid internship to help us better understand what motivates youth to ride and how to engage them in advocacy.
The result? A new report, authored by Chen, on "Engaging Youth in Bicycle Advocacy." Read more.

Mythbusting: Exposing Half-Truths That Support Automobile Dependency

Critics claim that walking and cycling are unimportant, based on data indicating that about 90% of households own automobiles and 95% of all commute trips are by motorized modes. However, active transport is more important and more common than such statistics indicate. Read more.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Petition asks for protected bike lanes in Waterloo

A group of cycling advocates has collected more than 750 signatures on a petition to convince Waterloo city councillors to consider building protected bike lanes from the railroad tracks in the city's uptown, stretching north to University Avenue, as part of a wider plan to improve Uptown Waterloo's streetscape. Read more.

‘Free’ streets, highway network an illusion

One researcher has determined there are at least 90 different ways to put a price on something we all need one way or the other: the road-based transportation network. Whether through flat fees, tolls, distance-charging or a myriad of variations, the idea is fundamentally simple: you pay for what you use. It’s fairer, more transparent, potentially more equitable and ideally more affordable than what we have now. Read more.

Book Review: Happy City, by Charles Montgomery

Contemporary urbanism, its critics argue, caters to a new elite, who are gentrifying once affordable ’hoods with their sudden enthusiasm for High Lines and bike lanes. Read more.

A Tale of Two Suburbs

In Canada, we build tens of thousands of new homes—detached, semidetached and low rise apartments—in subdivisions across the land. At best, in our planning documents we only pay lip service to the concept of human-powered transportation. Few if any examples of suburban land developments show any attempt to address active transportation (AT) as a real and viable alternative transportation mode. Read more.

Condo buying: The walkability factor

The "walkability factor" has become an important consideration for condo buyers. The concept, made popular by the website, is based upon the notion that people walking on the streets makes an area more livable. Read more.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Walking, a Simple Yet Highly Effective Health Measure

At a time when extreme sports are all the hype, mundane activities like walking don’t get much attention. It’s just too basic, too boring to even think about it. Yet walking can be a great indicator of both physical and mental wellbeing. In addition, walking is considered by health experts as one of the most effective ways to stay fit and fend off illnesses like high blood pressure, heart disease, and even dementia. Read more.

Finally, a Bicycle Ad That's as Sexy as One for a Car

Now, for the first time, I’ve seen a bicycle ad that gives these car commercials a run for their money. The spot, just released by Copenhagen’s Butchers & Bicycles (located “in the heart of the meat-packing district in Copenhagen, Denmark”), employs all the traditional automotive tropes to promote the company’s new cargo bike, the MK1. Read more.

Walkable Cities are Good News for Small Business

When a city is more walkable—supporting pedestrians with narrower streets, wide sidewalks, and nearby recreational outlets—shops are frequented more often and do far better than those in less walkable areas. A report issued by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that “businesses appear to do better in a walkable commercial areas than in areas attracting mainly drive-to patronage.” Read more.

New York - Pedestrian fatalities on the rise across city

Pedestrians deaths are up this year across the five boroughs compared with 2012 — and have spiked by 15.5 percent since 2011. While the city boasts that overall traffic fatalities are at record lows, a Post analysis found at least 141 people were killed by cars through Monday, compared with 132 over the same period last year. Read more.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Open streets coming to Toronto?

Pedestrians and cyclists alike may soon get their chance to take over a major street in Toronto, if only for a few days during the summer. Read more.

Cyclists stage mass 'die in' outside Transport for London offices

An esimated 2,000 cyclists lay down in the street outside Transport for London (TfL)'s headquarters this evening, in protest at six cyclist deaths in two weeks. Read more.

Cycling Proponents Peddle Health Savings

Planners and decision-makers seeking to replace partisan screaming matches over city cycling with data-driven conversations should embrace economic assessment tools, an SFU epidemiologist told the second Metro Vancouver Cycling Action Forum, a half-day event held at TransLink’s new headquarters near Sapperton SkyTrain Station in New Westminster. Read more.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Windsor woman dies in ditch after wheelchair flips

Harvey Bondy, a long-time advocate for disabled people and in a wheelchair himself for nearly 20 years, was saddened to hear about the incident. He credited the city for making roads accessible.  However, Bondy also said they can do better, especially since he believes more people are using wheelchairs than before. Read more.

European Parliament Plenary Session Passes Key EuroVelo Legislation

The Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) is a EU policy area designed to focus funds on supporting trans-European transport infrastructure developments considered to be strategically important by the EU. The ECF has therefore been working hard since 2011 to ensure the inclusion of the EuroVelo network and add a reference to cycling. The result of the latest plenary vote means that including EuroVelo and cycling in the TEN-T network has now twice been given a mandate by the European Parliament. Read more.

First ever in Winnipeg – Community Walking & Cycling Map

Community residents in these three areas have been working to improve education, active transportation opportunities and safety for their neighbourhood. A map provides clear and concise information about what is in the community. This map is FREE and is located at 25+ locations in the community. Read more.

Halifax cycling group pushing to make helmet laws extinct in Nova Scotia

A cycling advocacy group in Halifax is looking to convince the provincial government to drop the mandatory bicycle helmet law. Members of the Halifax Cycling Coalition voted this week to make repealing Nova Scotia’s helmet requirement one of the group’s priorities in the new year. Read more.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Active seniors more likely to 'age successfully'

In the study, participants described the frequency and intensity of their physical activity in 2002-03, and then every two years until 2010-11. Some participants also had objective measurements of their physical activity. Read more.

Witnesses sought after 2 killed in Coquitlam hit and run

"This is happening too often. It's an outrageous tragedy and it's also a criminal tragedy," said Coquitlam Mayor Stewart. "We've got to do a lot more work on ensuring our pedestrian are safe that are drivers are attentive... that our roadways are as forgiving as possible when the drivers aren't attentive and the pedestrians aren't as careful as they should be." Read more.

Hungary Shows How to Bid for More EU Funds for Cycling

The Cycling Hungary Alliance, another ECF member, focused on using the potential of cycling tourism in Hungary, which is already estimated as contributing 1.9 billion Euros to the Hungarian economy every year by a study commissioned by the European Parliament. However to tap into this potential the Alliance stressed that there was a need for European, national and local cycle routes, with sophisticated promotion and marketing strategies and cycling-friendly services to attract users from home and abroad. Read more.

Why Correcting Misperceptions About Mass Transit May Be More Important Than Improving Service

There's a psychological component to riding transit that's easy for city officials and planners to overlook. Fact is, we're not all completely rational about our travel decisions. The perceptions that people have about public transportation, substantiated or not, are powerful enough to attract or repel them. Read more.

Worries, concerns over tacks found on new Halifax bike lane

However, one business owner along Windsor Street who is upset over the new bike lane is real estate broker Patrick Stubbert, who runs Point Zero One Realty. “I went to my lawyer…who is now in the process of filing through the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia an injunction [on the bike lane],” he said. Read more.

Cycling during pregnancy: Tips from Dame Sarah Storey

Britain's most decorated female Paralympic athlete gave birth to her daughter Louisa in June this year. Here are Sarah’s top tips for cycling during pregnancy… Read more.

Edmonton planning to ‘winter proof’ contentious 106 Street bike lanes

The City is continuing its efforts to make Edmonton’s streets more cyclist-friendly. The latest initiative comes in the form of a pilot project that will keep the bike route along 106 Street between 29 Avenue and Saskatchewan Drive kept in top shape all winter. Read more.

City to unveil plans for major new separated bicycle lane downtown

The city is set to unveil plans for a major new downtown cycle track, offering protection for cyclists on a road that stretches from the Bow to the Elbow Rivers, and services such facilities as Olympic Plaza, the Epcor Centre, Stampede Park and a number of major employment centres, including The Bow skyscraper and the planned 58-storey Telus Sky tower. Read more.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

‘Intersections: Health and the Built Environment’

Intersections: Health and the Built Environment makes the case that we can build our way to better health, by providing an indication of the scale of the challenges facing communities worldwide, and it outlines the opportunities and benefits for improving global health through intelligent urban design. Read more.

‘Intersections: Health and the Built Environment’

Intersections: Health and the Built Environment makes the case that we can build our way to better health, by providing an indication of the scale of the challenges facing communities worldwide, and it outlines the opportunities and benefits for improving global health through intelligent urban design. Read more.

‘Intersections: Health and the Built Environment’

Intersections: Health and the Built Environment makes the case that we can build our way to better health, by providing an indication of the scale of the challenges facing communities worldwide, and it outlines the opportunities and benefits for improving global health through intelligent urban design. Read more.

Windsor - Library upgrades, LED lights, bike paths promised by mayor

In front of a crowd of more than 500 people, the mayor promised in excess of $5 million in improvements to the Windsor Public Library system. Nearly 18 kms of new bike lanes and connectors will be built, connecting the perimeter of Windsor. Read more.

Council approves master plans for building the future Ottawa

Council approved an updated Official Plan, Infrastructure Master Plan, Transportation Master Plan, Pedestrian Plan and Cycling Plan that were created in consultation with the public throughout 2013 during the Building a Liveable Ottawa initiative. These plans set the vision for Ottawa’s future growth to 2031. Read more.

Take Action: Toward Zero Deaths

The Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act states clearly that the lives of all roadway users are important -- and creates accountability toward ending needless deaths. It gives US DOT the flexibility to determine the best method to meet these safety measures, and calls on our leaders to reduce the number of people biking and walking who are killed or injured on our streets every year.  Read more.

For older citizens, lack of transportation a daily struggle

Millions of senior citizens across the country already struggle to get around without a car. By 2050, the number of Americans who are age 65 or older is projected to more than double – from 40 million to 88.5 million – while the number of people age 85 or older will increase five times, according to figures provided Wednesday. Read more.

Overcomplicating Winter Cycling: Why It's Bad

With winter’s impending arrival, all manner of “how to cycle in the winter” guides are slapped up all over the place. Year after year, the subcultures put on their professor hats and look down their noses at the general population while they attempt to “teach” people how to be just like them. You know the type – real cyclists. Read more.

Dad on Foot Arrested for Refusing to Wait in Line of Cars to Get Kids

This is a strange and upsetting video about a dad in Tennessee who walked to the local school to pick up his kids — 8 and 14 — and was told he had to wait in the line of cars (or at least, wait as LONG as the parents in cars) to get them. As he was on foot, this made no sense, a point he argued with the police officer at the school who, as you’ll see, then put the dad in handcuffs and drove him off in the police car. See video.

One hour's driving costs 20 minutes of life, study says

Every hour spent behind the wheel represents a 20-minute loss in life expectancy because of the risk of being involved in a fatal motor vehicle accident, say researchers, who calculate that even a slight reduction in speed by the average driver could save lives. Read more.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Planner’s Guide to Tactical Urbanism

Temporary interventions have emerged as an important way to make improvements to local neighbourhoods that present fewer risks for both citizens and municipal administrations.
These informal initiatives, popularly known as "tactical urbanism", have also inspired planners and municipal officials to experiment with low-cost pilot projects as a tool to make local improvements. Read more.

U.S. Bike Manufacturer to Focus on E-bikes

US fork manufacturer Fox Factory Holding is increasing its sales focus on the producers of e-bikes. Fox CEO Larry Enterline sees many opportunities: “If you start going 30 miles an hour you’re going to want some suspension.” Read more.

Can 2014 be the beginning of a Dolce Vita for Italian cyclists?

The proposal for a revised Highway Code in favor of cyclists in Italy is an example of the results that joint advocacy efforts can lead to. Read more.

Monday, November 25, 2013

The Procrastinator's Guide to Winter Bicycle Commuting

Truthfully, I've never been prepared to bike in what passes for winter where I live, in Washington, D.C. By late October, I start riding to work with socks on my hands. By November, I'm layering a sweat shirt and a shapeless leather jacket from JCPenney. Biking at all between December and March has, in past years, meant sacrificing my dignity for warmth. Read more.

Make Windsor more walkable, urges former Maple Leaf CEO

Peddie suggested Windsor follow the example of Portland, Ore., which set out a plan years ago to be more pedestrian friendly. Walk Score, which gave Portland a 63 for walkability in its latest assessment, says it “might be the most walking, biking, and public transit friendly city on the West Coast. Most neighborhoods have walkable food cart pods, supermarkets, movie theaters and cafes.” Read more.

Toronto - Car-less commuter rides ‘the crazy train’ from Courtice — and thrives

But the most outrageous act the Courtice commuter has ever committed — the sacrifice that few 905ers would even contemplate — is that she gave up her car. Smith returned her Chevy Equinox to the dealership two years ago in favour of the GO bus, a bike and her own two feet. Read more.

The Rural Cycling Highway

Most of us have probably heard of cycling highways in the Netherlands. Less known is that cycling highways also exist elsewhere - for example, in Northern Ireland. Read more.

Whitehorse Welcomes New Active Transportation Paths

Over the years, Yukon has chosen to direct its Gas Tax funding to a wide variety of projects. Most recently, lasting health and environmental benefits will result from a $1-million investment in five local connector pathways: Hillcrest, Takhini North Path, Centennial Street, Quartz Road, Lower Escarpment, and the Porter Creek connector which is still in progress. Read more.

Can Saying People on Bikes Instead of Cyclists-make People Safer?

 "To me, and many others, 'cyclist' brings to mind someone wearing Lycra, riding a performance bike—someone who is engaged more in a sport than a mode of transportation or accessible recreation," says Carolyn Szczepanski, director of communications at the League of American Bicyclists. "While we absolutely embrace those riders, it doesn't paint a full, realistic picture of the people who are riding—both for advocacy and outreach purposes and public perception purposes." Read more.

Bike Curious: The First Ride Toward a Bicycle Lifestyle

Savona Bailey-McClain became an advocate for cycling even before she learned to ride a bike. Read more.

U.S. - 2012 Motor Vehicle Crashes: Overview

Despite the general downward trend in overall fatalities in recent years, pedestrian and motorcycle fatalities have shown an upward trend. This was again the case in 2012, as motorcycle and pedestrian fatalities increased by 7 and 6 percent, respectively. Read more.

When a skateboard is not a skateboard

In the end, Administrative Appeals Tribunal Deputy President Robin Handley looked to the Macquarie Dictionary to help make her decision. "In my view, it is clear from the dictionary definitions and from an inspection of a skateboard, snakeboard or caster board that they are similar goods and that snakeboards and caster boards appear to be derivatives of skateboards," she said. Read more.

A Stroll Around the World

Even as I adhere strictly to my brand of bipedal journalism, trying as it were to put myself in a Pleistocene state of mind, cars keep roaring into my awareness. They are inescapable. They are without a doubt the defining artifacts of our civilization. They have reshaped our minds in ways that we long ago ceased thinking about. Read more.

Road safety: cyclists are not the only ones at risk on our cities' streets

In reducing road deaths in Britain, let us not forget the 5,000 per annum killed by toxic traffic fumes in London, with the carcinogen PM10 the prime target – 20% of inner London PM10 comes from taxis and nearly 80% from 8,000 buses. To meet air standards means using non-polluting transport such as cycles. Read more.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Civic Government Backpedals on Complete Streets and Transparent Government

On November 13, the Rutherford Borough Council in New Jersey unanimously approved a new road striping plan for the first phase of the Rutherford Bike Ring. In an ironic twist for the bike plan, this first phase of the striping did not include bike lanes. Despite three years of meetings, letters of support from residents, local, state and federal elected officials, the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission, Hackensack Riverkeeper, Rutherford Downtown Partnership and the heads of the police, schools and health departments — and in addition to almost $115,000 in taxpayer supported planning and design work for the original Bike Ring — the latest version of the plan was approved within minutes of first being presented, without public viewing and without public comment. Read more.

The Case Against Cars in 1 Utterly Entrancing GIF

Here is a brilliant piece of data viz to show how public transit reduces congestion. I sort of can't stop staring at it. See.

Vancouverism: The Prescription for a Healthier City?

In order to make our cities healthier and happier places to live, we need to focus on the key linkage between public health and urban mobility, and the ability of sustainable transport and community design to improve road safety. Read more.

Despite the deaths, cycling in London is getting safer

Is cycling in London getting more dangerous? With six deaths in two weeks, you might think Londoners would be insane to even consider taking to two wheels. But the facts tell a different story. Read more.

Winnipeg - Katz releases details on 2014 active transportation budget

Mayor Sam Katz released details of the 2014 budget at a news conference this morning, surprising some members of council. With 16 grade school children as a back drop inside the gym at Dalhousie School, Katz said the 2014 capital budget will see a $500,000 increase in spending for active transportation related projects: $1.75 million, up from $1.25 million 2013. Read more.

Friday, November 22, 2013

The Evolution of Driving in America

Contrary to the enviro stereotype, I like cars and I like driving. What I would not like, though, is being dependent on a car for every single thing I need or want to do. Read more.

For older citizens, lack of transportation a daily struggle

Lack of public transit, limited pools of taxpayer dollars and senior citizens’ reluctance to “burden” anyone else are a few of the challenges communities face as they struggle to help older residents who either cannot or should not get behind the wheel. Read more.

Halton Region Active Transportation Master Plan

The first round of Public Information Centres were held in June 2012 to present the study background, vision, guiding principles and problems/opportunities. A second round of Public Information Centres has been arranged to review and receive comments from the public on the proposed active transportation (cycling and walking) networks and supporting recommendations. Read more.

Winnipeg - Active Transportation to Get $1.75M Boost in City’s South End

The city is spending $1.75 million to build safe pedestrian and cycling facilities near elementary schools in south Winnipeg. Read more.

Edmonton - Civic politicians feeling bike lane road rage

For the car-driving majority, bike lane-induced road rage became a major issue in the civic election, and it’s worth noting we’re only a few dozen kilometres into the massive 500-km bike lane expansion plan envisioned for Edmonton over the next 20 years. If nothing changes, the rage is only going to grow. Read more.

No child left outside

First, we need an environment that allows – indeed, encourages – children to be outdoors more, to exercise and explore. And, second, we need more unstructured time for kids to be with their peers and learn life skills that they can’t learn as well any other way.  These two themes come dramatically together in the case of Tammy Cooper, the mom who was arrested for allowing her kids to ride their scooters in a cul-de-sac in La Porte, Texas, a suburb of Houston. Read more.

Chicago cycling group opposes bike-fee idea

Chicago's cycling advocacy group is pushing for an approach to make the roads safer for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians in a way where all can co-exist and share the road. And that doesn't include the $25 annual bike registration fee floated last month by Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd) to generate revenue for the city that is opposed by the alliance. Such a fee could discourage cycling, be difficult to enforce given there are suburban commuters, and cost more money that it could bring in. Read more.

Cycling Fatalities in Canada

Transport Canada did a very interesting study on pedestrian and cycling fatalities over a 30-year period. The surprising thing is that the fatality rates fell continually. Actually, they fell quite dramatically each year, over the years of the study. Cycling fatalities in Canada dropped 39% over the time of the study. This was the trend even though the number of cyclists increased dramatically. Read more.

How safe are the world's cities for cyclists?

The deaths of six cyclists in the past two weeks have highlighted the dangers of taking to London's busy streets. But what is it like to cycle in other major cities around the world? From Amsterdam to Delhi, our writers report from the bike lanes. Read more.

Boris Johnson defends London cycling safety record after spate of deaths

Boris Johnson has faced down critics following a spate of cyclist deaths in London by insisting that cycling safety has improved in the last few years. In often heated exchanges during mayor's question time at the London Assembly, Johnson said he would "not be deflected from the cause of encouraging more cycling in London". Read more.

Monday, November 18, 2013

London's 'cycling superhighways' are ideal … for kamikazes

The latest round of headlines detailing cyclists crushed under lorries and buses in London are proof of deep flaws in the mayor's cycle infrastructure schemes. But they also reveal flaws in the ways that all of us – including Boris Johnson – make decisions about risk, reward and daily travel. Read more.

Vancouver bicycle sharing program brings back memories of a crazy street furniture deal

The city's plans for an elaborate system with $95 annual memberships, $20 weekly memberships, and $5 daily memberships is starting to look like a potential boondoggle. Anyone who wants a bicycle probably already owns one, including the homeless guys who lug their trailers through the alleys of the city. Read more.

Safe bike paths key to cycling culture, say women

Women are reluctant to ­cycle because our roads aren't safe enough for family riding, a survey shows. Read more.

Dublin - Five cyclists a week face court for law-breaking

A crackdown by gardai on dangerous cycling in Dublin and across the country has resulted in more people being taken to court so far this year than for all of 2012. The move comes in advance of on-the-spot fines being introduced for dangerous cycling next year. Read more.

Are traffic sensors common sense for pedestrians, cyclists?

Take the case of a pedestrian who sees the street they're about to cross has just gotten a red light, so they start their walk a tad early. But surprise, suddenly they find themselves in the middle of the road as the traffic goes back to green. Read more.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Un coroner à bicyclette

Plus de 150 accidents, 93 cyclistes transportés à l'hôpital, 2 morts. Le bilan des collisions entre vélos et portières de véhicules des deux dernières années est consternant à Montréal. Read more.

Hamilton’s pedestrian plan made for walking

“We are creating a better place to walk,” said O’Connor, who assisted the city in drafting the 244-page pedestrian mobility plan called Stepping Forward. The plan, two-years in the making, is suppose to create safer communities for pedestrians and cyclists, by building safe street crossings and sidewalks, and links to parks and public transit over the next 20 years. Read more.

Where Should I Ride?

A cyclist's safety video. worthwhile watching, even if - or maybe especially if - you are an experienced cyclist. View.

Who needs a cycling helmet, when you’ve got an airbag?

Inventors who found that cyclists disliked wearing helmets because they spoilt their hair have the answer: the cyclist’s airbag. Read more.

Girls and Bicycles

A blog published by a female cyclist living in Edmonton. Read.

Renfrew County paving some road shoulders

Taking part in the unveiling of Renfrew County's hardened shoulders project as part of the Active Transportation Initiative was, from left, Brian Brohart, Lindsay Sinclair, Mike Nolan, Damien McCarthy, Dorothy Camblin, Reeve Walter Stack, Reeve Mary Campbell, Carly Meissner (front), David Darch, Warden Peter Emon, Mayor David Reid, Shawna Babcock, Harold Camblin, and Mathieu Grenier.
The County of Renfrew's Public Works and Engineering Department unveilied its hardened shoulders project, as part of the Active Transportation Initiative. The unveiling ceremony was held near the corner of County Road 10 (Baskin Drive) and County Road 2 (Daniel Street), on Nov. 1 at 9:50 a.m.
The unveiling attracted a large number of attendees from the public, elected officials, County of Renfrew staff and members of the Physical Activity Network and Committee. Read more.

Wheels fall off Vancouver’s bike-share program

The deal to deliver Vancouver’s bike-share system is in danger of falling through as equipment provider Bixi faces “imminent” insolvency. Read more.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Walkable Communities and the Future of American Cities

To nurture the growth of new walkable communities, urban planners must take into account the needs of pedestrians while also respecting the realities of modern American cities. Read more.

Cycling in a rural area is less idyllic and more intimidating

Cycling can be very discouraging here, far from the supporting hordes of riders in an urban setting. But the more people who bike, while following the rules of the road, the stronger the message will be that cars must learn to share. Read more.

Australian parents more reluctant than English to allow kids to walk to school

Just over half of Australian primary school children (51 per cent) are ferried to school by car, compared with less than a third (32 per cent) of primary school children in England, despite generally walkable distances in Australia, the study by Deakin University and VicHealth found. Read more.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

New Standards Could Make Roadways Usable For All Modes Of Transportation

Stapleton said complete streets are not just good for the ears, they are also good for the bottom line. You would see people speeding down this road, like 80 miles per hour, and the minute these started getting put in, it literally was slowing traffic down, and when you slow traffic down, people tend to look what’s around them, and with that happening, this shop has never been busier," Read more.

NYC Motorists Killed Three Pedestrians on City Sidewalks Today

“This corridor along the Park Avenue viaduct is a critical area of concern in my district for pedestrian safety,” Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito said in a statement, adding that she will soon be following up with DOT on pedestrian safety changes she suggested for Park Avenue earlier this year. Read more.

Ottawa - City plans network of winter bike routes, won’t pay for it yet

Plowing bike lanes and paths to make winter commuting by bicycle more appealing is a priority for the city, but at a cost it’s not quite ready to pay. The $200,000-a-year price tag to scrape clean an additional 16 kilometres of pavement all winter puts the city government in a Catch-22: Winter biking is difficult on snowy, slushy, icy roads, so not all that many people do it. But because not all that many people do it, it’s hard to justify the expense of making it easier. Read more.

Selling the Public on Biking, Political-Campaign Style

Bike advocates are trying to figure out how to motivate people who would like to ride those neglected bikes, but perceive the streets as uncomfortable, unsafe, or downright terrifying. To that end, the national group People for Bikes recently surveyed registered voters in San Francisco and Portland, Oregon, teasing out their perceptions about bike safety and bike infrastructure. Read more.

I don’t ride a bike, why should I support measures to boost cycling

If you are not a regular cyclist, you may ask why you should support proposals to boost investment in safe cycle routes. Read more.

Monday, November 11, 2013

The secrets of the world's happiest cities

 People who live in monofunctional, car‑dependent neighbourhoods outside urban centres are much less trusting of other people than people who live in walkable neighbourhoods where housing is mixed with shops, services and places to work.

Stutzer and Frey found that a person with a one-hour commute has to earn 40% more money to be as satisfied with life as someone who walks to the office. On the other hand, for a single person, exchanging a long commute for a short walk to work has the same effect on happiness as finding a new love. Read more.

Newmarket teacher starts skateboarding club

Seventh-grade science teacher Jacques Beriau, himself a skater for nearly two decades, decided to start a skate park club this year at Newmarket Junior Senior High School. If we can start a community for them, and show people what these kids are doing, that's great. The more positive things we can do, the better." Read more.

Longboarding Is More Dangerous Than Skateboarding, Study Shows

People who skateboard using a type of board called a longboard may be at greater risk for severe injuries than those who use regular skateboards, a new study suggests. Read more.

What it Takes to Sell Biking to North Americans

In a first-of-its-kind study, funded by the PeopleForBikes Green Lane Project in partnership with transportation departments in San Francisco, CA, and Portland, OR, and Portland-based firms NORTH and Wild Alchemy, researchers set to find out how to better sell bicycling. Read more.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Citi Bike Carries More Riders on Fewer Bikes Than London Bike-Share

Five months after its launch, Citi Bike is already moving more people than its larger, more established sister program in London, according to an analysis by University College of London researcher Oliver O’Brien. Read more.

Find Langley's future on foot

Experts on housing and liveability gathered to talk about the future of Langley at the Township's third annual Economic Forum Oct. 24. Read more.

Is It O.K. to Kill Cyclists?

My own view is that everybody’s a little right and that we’re at a scary cultural crossroads on the whole car/bike thing. American cities are dense enough — and almost half of urban car trips short enough, under three miles. But the social and legal culture of the American road, not to mention the road itself, hasn’t caught up. Read more.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Hard Truths about Transit

The Toronto region now ranks as the worst performer in Canada in moving people to and from work and is near the bottom of global rankings2. For the past several decades our investments in the region’s public transit have not kept pace with economic and population growth.

This is true for Canada as a whole. Between 1955 and 1977, new investment in infrastructure grew by 4.8% annually, in line with economic and population growth; between 1978 and 2000, however, it grew by a miniscule 0.1%. Read more.

A 'Gateway Drug' for Better Bike Infrastructure

People who want to see more protected bike lanes on city streets sometimes have a hard time making their case. No matter how many renderings and drawings they present to make their arguments, they can't actually show skeptics how the new infrastructure would work in real life – what it would feel like for cyclists, drivers, and pedestrians when part of the street is dedicated to helping people ride bikes safely. Read more.

The Simplest Way to Get People Biking

This comparison is so powerful – and this is the kind of data any bike-share system needs – for one big reason. It's not enough to make it possible for people to bike. What advocates really need to do is make clear the costs of not biking, in minutes saved or dollars not spent. Read more.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Kitsilano bike lane plan runs up against court injunction

The City of Vancouver has agreed to abide by a B.C. Supreme Court injunction that halts the construction of a bike lane through Hadden Park in Kitsilano. Read more.

City pledges safer streets for Hamilton pedestrians

In a week where new numbers show Hamilton’s streets are among the worst in the province for pedestrian safety, city hall has pledged to make Hamilton more walkable.

The city will make its decisions “from the sidewalk, not the centre of the road” with its new pedestrian mobility plan, which councillors approved unanimously at a general issues committee meeting Wednesday (Nov. 6). Read more.

Region considers more sidewalks, trails

The Region of Waterloo wants to install more than 1,000 kilometres of new sidewalks, multi-use trails and cycling infrastructure in the next decade — but it will take time and money to implement. The region has about $42.5 million in its capital budget for such projects. Read more.

Toronto Public Health launches WALK CYCLE MOVE campaign

The city’s health authority recently launched WALK CYCLE MOVE, a series of public consultations taking place throughout Toronto. Read more.

Huntsville may tap district active transportation fund

A plan to connect to active transportation trails in Huntsville may get some funding from the District of Muskoka. “That’s what we decided was the No. 1 priority in terms of making connections into the town from our trails outside of town,” said Coun. Scott Aitchison, chair of the town’s sustainability committee. Read more.

Cycling policy 'getting better' across Scotland, report suggests

Cycling Scotland said the top performing councils were Glasgow, Edinburgh, Fife and Aberdeenshire. The organisation said all 32 councils participated, with some performing extremely well and others needing a more focused approach. The 2013 edition of the report follows two previous assessments carried out in 2005 and 2008. Read more.

Bicycle Ministry To Promote Cycling in Japan

In an attempt to coordinate the county’s national cycling policy a parliamentary working group proposed the creation of a Ministry of Bicycle Promotion. Read more.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Simcoe Muskoka Active Transportation Symposium: November 14, 2013

An interactive learning day for municipal engineering, public works and planning staff, and the private sector engineering and planning firms who often work in concert with municipalities. Read more.

Learning to pedal with the Community Partners Bike Library

A program of Cycles for Change, the Community Partners Bike Library (CPBL) collaborates with 20 diverse organizations in the Twin Cities metro area to make bikes and education accessible to underrepresented communities, encourage lifelong bicycle-use and increase livability, health and access throughout the Twin Cities. Read more.

Video - Calgary bicycle coordinator

Meet Calgary's new bicycle coordinator, Tom Thivener. View.

Report - Costs for Pedestrian and Bicyclist Infrastructure Improvements

Costs for pedestrian and bicycle safety infrastructure often vary greatly from city to city and state to state. This document (and associated database) is intended to provide meaningful estimates of infrastructure costs by collecting up-to-date cost information for pedestrian and bicycle treatments from states and cities across the country. Using this information, researchers, engineers, planners, and the general public can better understand the cost of pedestrian and bicycle treatments in their communities and make informed decisions about which infrastructure enhancements are best suited for implementation. Read more.

Active and Safe Routes to School in Manitoba November Newsletter

Read it here.

Why Cycling is a Political Act

Each time ( a cyclist's death) happens, as with this time, I realize again that cycling is a political act, and if I allow myself to be scared off my bike, I have done something quite unacceptable to me: I have yielded to the domineering presence of automobiles in this world. Read more.

Step Closer For Seacliff Trail

Engineers working on designs for a County Wide Active Transportation trail along Seacliff Dr. in Leamington have more feedback to work with. Read more.

Welland - Bike lanes planned for Ontario Rd.

With nearly $30,000 of funding from Niagara Region, city council approved plans to add bicycle lanes to the road, a project that will link together bike lanes throughout the city, said Ward 5 Coun. Mike Petrachenko at Tuesday’s council meeting. Read more.

Yes, But Where Are All The People? – Sydney, Australia

Visions and strategies and diagrams and glossy PowerPoint presentations paint more or less alluring pictures of the urban future we might inherit, but few seem capable of wrapping themselves around a more mundane, but more compelling vision about the way people actually lived, or wanted to live. Where, indeed, are all the people? Read more.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

What the Departure of New York and Chicago's Transportation Leaders Means for Cities

Klein and Sadik-Khan have helped put some glitz and glamour to a position that traditional hasn’t been known for it, generating lots of media headlines and adulation of hip urban thinkers. “They’ve taken what, for a long time, was a backwater and not a sexy position, and made it very public and shown how much it impacts people on a daily basis,” says Geoffrey Anderson, president and CEO of Smart Growth America. “It’s really changed the view of how prominent and how important these positions can be, and it opens it up to folks who think about things in a different way." Read more.

Delaware Drops “Share the Road” Signs

Following a push from cyclists around the state, Delaware has agreed to stop using “share the road” signs. Beginning immediately, the DOT will use signs that convey less ambiguous messages confirming cyclists’ right to the streets. Read more.

New Poll Finds Strong Support for More, Better Biking in San Francisco

Results of a new independent poll of San Francisco voters, conducted by David Binder Research and released today, show strong support for City leaders to encourage more biking in San Francisco, including expanding the nascent Bike Share system, adding more physically separated bikeways to increase safety, and ensuring bicycling is comfortable and safe for residents of all ages. Read more.

China cracks down on emissions to combat choking smog

Traffic police barely seen in smog at toll booth, China Jiln province
Traffic police at a highway toll booth as vehicles are forced to wait due to heavy smog in China's Jilin province last month. Chinese cities should close schools, cut working hours and stop outdoor activities during the most severe spells of air pollution, the ministry of environmental protection has said. "Every possible compulsory measure" must be taken to cut emissions during the heaviest smog – including suspending factory production and imposing traffic restrictions. Read more.

Dubai - 'Every resident is a pedestrian' - but can you park and walk?

Maitha bin Adai, CEO RTA's Traffic and Roads department walks Emirates 24|7 through the evolution of the emirate's pedestrian-friendliness. Read more.

Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment Position Statement on Active Transport

Although it seems a novel idea to be urging the public health and urban planning spheres to work together to improve population health, historically, both in the UK and the USA, modern town planning actually grew from concerns regarding the crowded and unhealthy slums of industrializing cities in the 19th century (Lake 2006). A rapprochement between the two disciplines is therefore much less a newfangled, difficult concept and much more a natural return to a sensibly holistic way of operating. Read more.