Saturday, December 20, 2014

Port Hawkesbury looking to further develop active transportation trail system

The Strait Area Trails Association will hold a public meeting in the boardroom of the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre on Jan. 26 at 7 p.m. to discuss possible projects for the Port Hawkesbury Community Trails system. Read more.

'Cycling Santa' Unwraps Victoria's First Bike Barometer

Victoria’s first bike barometer, displaying the number of cyclists per day and the total for the year, along with the temperature and time, is now in operation along the Galloping Goose Trail. This is one of a series of actions the City is taking to improve cycling in Victoria. Read more.

Amazon Begins Manhattan Bike Deliveries

The service, called Prime Now, for now is starting only in select areas of Manhattan. It's slated to be rolled out to more U.S. cities in 2015. The cost for a one-hour delivery in Manhattan is $7.99 for buyers of such everyday essentials as batteries, towels, shampoo and books. But two-hour deliveries are free. Read More.

Funding provided for design study for cycling, pedestrian overpass linking Truro and Truro Heights roads

East Hants MLA Margaret Miller, on behalf of Energy Minister Andrew Younger, announced on Friday morning in Truro the provincial government will pay $37,500 to commission a design study that will ultimately result in a pedestrian and bicyclist (bridge) overpass connecting Abenaki Road to Truro Heights Road. Read more.

Walkability Is Good for You

A slew of new research links walkable neighborhoods with safer, healthier, more democratic places. Read more.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The surprising reason why morning walks can help you lose weight

Getting up for a sunrise walk can help you lose weight — but it isn't just the walking that makes the difference. Earlier this year, researchers at Northwestern University revealed that exposure to morning light can help as well. Read more.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Are complete streets losing steam at Hamilton city hall?

Coun. Chad Collins, one of the most vocal councillors on killing the lane, says he heard while campaigning in Ward 5 during this fall’s election that constituents were annoyed by the cost and inconvenience of downtown transit and bike lanes. Read more.

Cycling Is Creating More Jobs in Europe Than Automakers Are in the U.S.

Europe boasts a cycling economy that employs more than 655,000 people in industries such as retail, manufacturing, infrastructure investment, and tourism. On just two wheels, the industry is creating more jobs than Europe’s high-fashion footwear industry (388,000 jobs), its well-established steel sector (410,000), and the United States’ Big Three automobile companies (Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler) combined (510,000). Read more.

Architecture to encourage cycling

Dr. Steven Fleming works to make bicycles the inspiration for architects that cars were during the twentieth-century. In today’s ArchDaily architecture journal, Fleming discusses 10 ways architects can design for bicycles to move cities forward. Read more.

Edmonton - Pedestrian-friendly changes proposed to McKernan/Belgravia LRT area

Plans for making the area around the McKernan/Belgravia LRT station more pedestrian and cycling friendly are already in the works, with several transit oriented development accessibility structures plotted. Read more.

Four Reasons Pedestrian Injuries Have Plummeted Along Protected Bike Lanes

As dozens of thought leaders on street safety gather in New York City today for the Vision Zero for Cities Symposium, some of them will be discussing this little-known fact: On New York streets that received protected bike lanes from 2007 to 2011, total traffic injury rates fell by 12 to 52 percent. Read more.

Researchers point to urban parks and trails as cost-effective ways to promote exercise

A new systematic review in the American Journal of Health Promotion found that providing public parks and walking and biking trails is the most cost-effective strategy to increase physical activity among large populations in urban areas. Read more.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Could Your Local Bike Shop Serve Women Better?

As a less-experienced commuter cyclist, I'm still learning first-aid skills for my little 10-speed mixte. So I've been sad to find an air of guarded knowledge, and slight dismissiveness, among the mechanics at my otherwise solid local bike shop. Hey, don't laugh off my question about whether my rim's bent or the wheel needs truing, dude—help me understand. Read more.

Australia ‘world’s worst place for cyclists’, says Danish rider who’s circled the globe

Thomas Andersen, from Copenhagen, singled out Sydney for particular criticism, saying he was shocked at the regular abuse from drivers. “Australia has wonderful people, but some just don’t like cyclists,” he told “Sydney was the only place in the world that people would wind down the window and shout ‘F***ing cyclist!’ It happened about three times, it was quite strange. Read more.

Paris mayor announces plans for a car-free city centre, plus €100m for bike lanes

The mayor of Paris has announced a plan to tackle traffic and pollution in the French capital by transforming the city's historic centre into a "semi-pedestrianised" zone. "In the four central districts, apart from bikes, buses and taxis, the only vehicles allowed will be residents' cars, delivery vehicles and emergency vehicles," Anne Hidalgo said in an interview with the Journal du Dimanche. Read more.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Pelham recognized as ‘walkable community'

Being pedestrian-friendly has earned the Town of Pelham provincial recognition. The Walk Friendly Community Designation from Green Communities Canada was presented during a Sustainable Mobility and Healthy Communities Summit in Markham, Wednesday. Read more.

Red Bull rolls into Nova Scotia to create a skateboarding movie

It was once a business dream: turn a scenic location on the Aspotogan Peninsula into a hotel resort and spa. That half-built hotel by the sea, abandoned years ago, was an unexpected skateboarding playground for a movie by Red Bull, the energy drink manufacturer. Read more.

Cycle of Giving marathon builds bikes for Winnipeg kids

Dozens of volunteer mechanics have turned the Orioles Community Centre into a holiday workshop as they aim to build 300 bicycles during the 24-hour period. The built bikes will go to children who cannot afford a bike of their own, according to organizers with W.R.E.N.C.H. (Winnipeg Repair Education and Cycling Hub). Read more.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Hamilton - Meeting with Transportation Managers Heralds a Culture in Transition

Last night, I had the pleasure of joining a group of engaged downtown residents to meet with several managers from the Public Works Department for an informal discussion about complete streets, corporate culture and citizen engagement. Read more.

Okanagan taxpayers on the hook for millions after CN deal struck

Taxpayers are on the hook for millions of dollars after the purchase of the abandoned rail line between Kelowna and Coldstream. The City of Kelowna and several other municipalities struck a deal with CN Rail on Monday. With little information about how the $22 million for the rail bed will be raised, some taxpayers are already speaking out against the idea. Read more.

Winter cycling: 5 tips for riding in the sleet and snow

Riding on snow can be a bit tricky, but with some adjustments you can easily gain the confidence to ride all year long. Read more.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Roundabouts Versus Stop Signs: Which is faster and safer for cyclists?

Roundabouts are clearly better for cars, but what about cyclist safety? In the States, attempting a roundabout on a bike is a scary concept since most drivers aren’t adept at navigating the circles. That could be because they have less experience with them: France, reportedly the European country with the most roundabouts, has more than 30,000. By comparison, Roundabout USA reports that there are a mere 3,500 in the US—in total. Read more.

Myth Debunked: Cyclists Are In the Way

When you're stuck in traffic in a car, it's easy to lose sight of the fact that you're helping create that same traffic, even as you complain about it. Read more.

The 6 Most Annoying Pedestrians Walking in Front of You

WHAT A TWIST! As much as it enrages you with OTHER people do these things, you will definitely, 100% do them at some point as well. And when you do, you'll be wondering what everyone else's problem is when they get frustrated. Read more.

Amsterdam colours its bicycle lanes red

At the moment, parts of this busy bicycle route lack a clearly marked red lane. Therefore the bicycle lanes will be coloured red to make them more visible and to provide cyclists with more safety on the road. The roles of cyclists and car drivers will be reversed, with the car now being a guest in bicycle territory. Read more.

Proposed Debert sidewalk would result in ‘huge rate increase'

Debert residents will see almost a 20-cent increase on their tax rate if a proposed new sidewalk is constructed from the village post office up to MacElmon Road. Read more.

Edmonton council unanimously decides to fund curb cuts, bike parking as part of Active Transportation plan

Mayor Don Iveson  has been nothing short of “disappointed” that during his time on council has consistently had to “dig” the Active Transportation plan out of the budget “book” in hopes of giving it funding. Read more.

Proposed plan for the Stanley Park Causeway hopes to improve safety

The Cycling and Pedestrian Safety Improvement Project primarily focuses on widening the sidewalks and installing safety fencing along the Stanley Park Causeway, a 2.2 km segment of Highway 99 which provides one of two connections between Vancouver and the North Shore. Read more.

Saskatoon - Tax hike cut, but talks continue

An effort by Coun. Eric Olauson to cut the increase to Meewasin Valley Authority funding for trail repair to about $200,000 from $257,000 failed, as did an attempt to slash $174,000 earmarked for the active transportation fund. Read more.

Halifax - Turf for Cole Harbour, dollars for active transportation: council goes to work on capital budget

City staff told council’s Committee of the Whole on Wednesday the capital budget – which pays for buildings, equipment and non-transit fleet, land development and transportation infrastructure – will rise to $159 million from $144 million in 2014-15. It includes an increased investment in street recapitalization and sidewalks and was balanced as presented to council. Read more.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Lloydminster - Back to school using active transportation

The benefits of using active transportation to get to school or work are numerous. Also as numerous are the ways to sneak in a few steps even if you have to use non-active means of transportation to get to and from school or work. If you are driving your kids to school, don’t drop them off from the closest parking space. Drop them off at the other end of the school yard so they have the opportunity to walk at least some of the way to school. Read more.

Sydney - ATV users make pitch for access to planned pedestrian overpass

Members of the Isle Royale ATV Club and the Marconi Trailblazers ATV Club are seeking permission to cross a planned pedestrian overpass to accompany a new roundabout at Sydney Port Access Road, Highway 125 and Grand Lake Road. Read more.

Saskatoon - Focus on cars bad for city

Considering that governments use tax policy as a way to encourage or discourage public behaviour, the juxtaposition of two recent front-page stories was noteworthy. Above a story headlined Car ownership surpasses city population again was the article Transit fees may increase next year; Leisure centre pass could go up by 5.38%. Read more.

Hamilton - Repurpose a Lane of Claremont Access for a Protected Two-Way Cycle Track

At last Wednesday's packed-house Love Your Streets seminar, we learned that half of all driving trips in Hamilton are a distance of five kilometres or less. Even more amazing, more than half of all trips one kilometre or less are taken by car. (Citizens at City Hall has an excellent write-up on the event.) Read more.

Pedal-powered cars eyed for Vancouver

VeloMetro is reviving the 80-year-old velocar, a lightweight pedal-powered car — but adding a 21st-century twist of electricity and an energy-recovery brake system to help users climb hills and travel longer distances. The functionality and design is a cross between an electric bicycle and a smart car. It’s a single-person enclosed vehicle, three-quarters the size of a smart car, but powered and steered from the inside like a bicycle on three wheels. Read more.

Plans for improved bike route on Stanley Park causeway coming today

The ministry had promised to unveil its proposal by late last spring, but instead scheduled a public consultation for Tuesday. A ministry spokeswoman said it had taken a bit longer than expected to balance the technical requirements of an expanded sidewalk with minimizing the impacts to the park. Read more.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Parking Lot Safety

When thinking of parking lots, one normally does not think of potential hazards associated with it. Parking lots are designed for vehicles and not pedestrians. Therefore, hazards are everywhere. The National Safety Council’s Journal of Safety Research reported 2,057 work-related deaths on company parking lots between 1993 and 2003. Both pedestrians and drivers should view parking lots as if they were streets and intersections. Read more.

Pedestrians at risk from distracted drivers

There is a suspicion that in car-crazy Toronto, people who walk are an endangered species.
For example, during a recent week-long pedestrian safety blitz, two pedestrians were killed.
In one two-hour period a couple of weeks ago, five pedestrians were struck by cars in separate incidents. Pedestrians are knocked down by any number of various vehicles. They are hit by cars, of course, but also street cars, buses, trucks, bicyclists. But mostly cars. Read more.

Suffolk County Approves Legislation Calling For Park Exercise Prescriptions

In a first for the Tri-State Area, health care professionals in the suburbs may soon be giving patients unusual prescriptions. The patients are receiving a doctor’s prescription not for medication, but for serious exercise in the form of walking in parks. Read more.

After a Series of Failures, This Is How Vancouver Finally Built a Controversial Bike Lane

In 1996, Vancouver temporarily converted a car lane on the Burrard Street Bridge into a separated bicycle lane. The six-month trial was a spectacular failure: it lasted a week. In 2005, the city revisited the idea, only to have it shot down for fear of reprising the previous debacle. Then, in 2009, the Burrard bike lane got one more chance—only to work out beautifully and become a permanent fixture. Read more.

Phoenix launches bike share program

The program allows anyone with a membership or a pass to stop by one of the 27 stations across the city, enter a PIN code to pick up a bike and ride it to their destination. The bikes are equipped with impressive solar-powered technology that allows users to reserve a bike, lock it up to any rack and even track mileage and gas savings. Read more.

Monday, December 1, 2014

France's Tour de Force in City Biking

In this age of rethinking how we plan cities, intense urban change, and information sharing, focusing on what inspires is important. Many cities inspire me with their fast and effective change and vision in reestablishing the bicycle on the urban landscape, but what of nations? Where do we find change at the national level?

We look to France. Read more.

Vancouver - Decoy pedestrian raises ire

West Vancouver police are among those who have been targeting pedestrian safety this month, with campaigns in Ambleside and Dundarave. But at least one driver is questioning some of the techniques used by police to drive home their point. Cameron Duff, a West Vancouver lawyer, says the "pedestrian decoy" that landed him with a $167 ticket recently amounts to entrapment and doesn't make streets safer. Read more.

Toronto to narrow traffic lanes in hopes of increasing safety

Toronto will narrow many of the city’s traffic lanes in a bid to increase safety by reining in speeds while freeing up space for bicycle lanes or wider sidewalks. The city has just finished a new policy for lane widths, guidelines that will be rolled out gradually across Toronto. Read more.

The Secret History of Cars Begins With Bicycles

Politically powerful 19th-century cyclists created road infrastructure in the U.S. and Europe—and many of them went on to lead the fledgling automobile industry. Read more.

Walk21 - Vienna 2015

The conference will be held from 20 - 23 October 2015. The conference motto “Stepping ahead” promotes activities and innovations towards the future of our resilient cities and healthy living environments.

The main conference themes are

• Walking towards new public spaces
• Walking towards resilient cities
• Walking towards safety and health
• Walking together

Whether you are a politician, a planner, a campaigner, a researcher or a practitioner, you are welcome sharing your experience and be part of the discussion and all side events at Walk21 Vienna 2015.

For more information on the Call for Abstracts visit our conference website or have a look at the guidelines and instructions for submitting an abstract attached to this email.

Friday, November 28, 2014

After another fatality, Ottawa cyclists look for built-in safety

“I’m frustrated. Cyclists or pedestrians keep getting hit by cars and killed or injured … I’m never satisfied by what we hear afterwards. Read more.

Berwick NS - Blue Route & Active Transportation Policy Framework Consultation

Blue Route & Active Transportation Policy Framework Consultation
DateMonday December 8, 2014
Doors Open9 am
Time9:30 am - 4:30 pm
Duration7 Hours

Canmore focusing on bikes and pedestrians in plan

Canmore’s recently adopted integrated transportation master plan continues to focus municipal resources on moving people around the community in different ways, including on bikes and on foot. The plan for a multi-modal transportation network, which promotes active modes like bikes and pedestrians, sets out a goal to make Canmore Alberta’s premiere walking and cycling community. Read more.

Okotoks - Centre Ave. cycle track proposed

Divided bike lanes could be added to a busy road on Okotoks’ north side as the Town explores a major facelift for Centre Avenue. The proposal was unveiled at a Nov. 17 open house in town council chambers where residents were able to provide feedback on the two proposed concepts for the street, which are aimed at improving mobility for cyclists and pedestrians. Read more.

Can we engineer walking back into our lives?

With Mississippi Mills on the cusp of creating a “comprehensive” Transportation Master Plan and Active Transportation Master Plan we must ask this question. Can we engineer walking back into our lives? Read more.

Guelph - More students will be bused to Upper Grand schools

Upper Grand's new walking distance policy comes into effect Sept. 1, 2015. The established walking distance for Grade 7 and 8 students at 3.2 kilometres, and for Grades 9 to 12 at 3.5 kilometres, will not change. Although the walking distance reductions fly in the face of active transportation and walking school bus initiatives, if students are bused, it means their parents aren't driving them to and from school and that should reduce congestion outside schools before and after dismissal, McLennan said. Read more.

Bicycle co-op program inspired after agent of change attempts to launch one for Mission Possibilities

A new active transportation program may be seen soon in Portage la Prairie — and all because of an unsuccessful attempt at launching one for Mission Possibilities. Read more.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Cyclists say proposed downtown Edmonton bike route plans are ‘promising’

Early signs point to ‘yes’ for cyclists at Monday night’s downtown bike route consultations, with many cyclists eying the positives in the proposed designs. Bike boulevard and cycle tracks were the two options up for discussion for the route that travels along the proposed 102 Avenue route. Read more.

UK cycling networks to get spending boost of more than £200m

More than £200m will be spent on encouraging cycling in an attempt to make Britain a nation that loves its bicycles like Denmark and the Netherlands, Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister, will say on Thursday. Read more.

It isn’t just about going car free

A recent fad is self-professed car freedom, but that doesn’t get us very far, except maybe contributing material for our social media feeds. True change to mitigate the colossal damage the private automobile has induced — environmentally and socially — requires actions beyond simply selling your car. It’s a complex system with numerous connections. Read more.

Maple Ridge Bike repair service on Dragon's Den

The founders of Velofix make a pitch Wednesday night to the CBC business show Dragon’s Den, explaining how a mobile bicycle repair service could find a market niche. Read more.

Fort St. John seeks to become a 'walkable city'

It’s a lonely road for many in Fort St. John. You can see that laid out in a recent Fort St. John document about the city’s ongoing master transportation plan. It showed that nearly 70 per cent of people drove around in a vehicle with a single occupant – in other words, alone. Read more.

Le « bécyk à pédales » mal-aimé

Le BIXI n’est pas un vulgaire « bécyk à pédales » qui siphonne les fonds publics, comme s’en est déjà désolé le ministre libéral Laurent Lessard. C’est un service public qui est en complément aux transports en commun. Et contrairement aux préjugés, à Montréal, il est efficace. Read more.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Toronto - New policy narrows lane widths on some streets to improve safety

Research shows there is a direct relationship between travel speed and lane width, according to a city backgrounder. Motorists feel more comfortable driving faster when travelling inside wide lanes, often in excess of the posted speed limit. Higher speeds lead to more damaging collisions and higher rates of mortality. Read more.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Build the case for cycling - ECF teams up with WHO/ Europe to show you how

Turning the benefits of cycling into concrete numbers is key to getting the message across to policy makers. That’s why at ECF we are partnering with WHO/ Europe to provide a programme of free webinars on the updated HEAT (Health and Economic Assessment Tool), with a focus on cycling.  HEAT is an excellent tool that can be used to translate lower levels of mortality thanks to cycling and walking into financial benefits. Read more.

Le maintien du programme d'entretien de la Route verte réclamé

Le programme, financé par Québec à la hauteur de 2,8 millions de dollars par année, permet depuis 2001 d'entretenir la véloroute de 5358 km - une responsabilité partagée à parts égales entre le provincial et les municipalités. Read more.

Halifax - Cyclist license cycle

The city should pay a monthly stipend to cyclists, or maybe just offer them some discounts around town. After all, they're unclogging our roads, promoting a healthy lifestyle and staving off global warming. What we shouldn’t do is force cyclists to purchase a license to ride. That's what Dartmouth councillor Gloria McCluskey wants the city to look into. She says it will help identify problem cyclists and the money raised will go towards more bike lanes. A staff report looking into the idea is to be requested at the next Regional Council meeting. Read more.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Job Posting - Halifax

Working under the supervision of the Making Tracks Coordinator the Making Tracks Project Officer will assist in expanding the reach of the Making Tracks active transportation safety and skills training program throughout Nova Scotia. Specifically, the Project Officer will provide leadership training and support to key partners across Nova Scotia to build capacity within communities to train youth and children in active transportation safety and skills. Read more.

Halifax - Macdonald Bridge bike lanes to be studied again

Halifax plans to take another look at changing the on and off ramps of the Macdonald Bridge bike lane with a major redecking project planned for next year. It's been studied before, but city officials say the project presents an opportunity to try again. Read more.

How the Danish Cooperated to Build a Bicycle Superhighway

Getting the 22 municipalities involved to agree was not easy, but the outcome is revolutionary. Read more.

Quiz: do you know your cycling rules of the road?

Are helmets compulsory? Can cyclists ride two abreast? And when is night-time actually night-time? Find out the answers to these and more by taking our cycling 'rules of the road' quiz. Read more.

Bridgewater - Provincial cash to help town with bike racks

The province says it has supported the Town of Bridgewater’s efforts to promote sustainable transportation by providing nearly $9,000 for new bike racks. Read more.

Plan gains slow traction in Enderby

City council has received the Enderby-Splatsin active transportation plan analysis and proceeded with a number of recommendations. “It’s a to-do list. Some are long-term and some aren’t very viable,” said Howie Cyr, outgoing mayor. Read more.

Bixi benefits far outweigh the costs

Lessons are to be learned from the business model that saw the Société de vélo en libre-service file for bankruptcy at the start of this year, but as Bixis are pulled off the streets for another winter and Mayor Denis Coderre is expected to make an announcement next week about Bixi’s fate, Montrealers should be reassured that foreign experience shows it to be a worthwhile enterprise. Read more.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

B.C. pedestrian caught on camera being struck by car raises safety concerns

Victoria Police Const. Neil Lundin says the accident clearly shows just how careful pedestrians need to be because drivers aren't always paying attention. "It's another example of pedestrians, in this city, even if they have a walk sign ... drivers have to be very careful to clear that walk sign before they make that left turn." Read more.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Friday's Verrazano Bridge Protesters Join a Long History of Pro-Bike Activism

The "photobomb" is the work of activist group Right of Way, which advocates for pedestrian and cyclist rights. The group argues that the bridge's lack of alternative transportation symbolizes a larger city failure to permit its growing bicycle culture penetrate into the outer boroughs. Read more.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Webinar - Thursday, December 4, 2014 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM (EST)

On December 4, 2014 the Heart and Stroke Foundation will host a webinar to discuss the key results from the Report Card and the Global Summit while focusing in on Active Transportation. Jacky Kennedy from Green Communities Canada will discuss how Active Transportation interventions have great potential to increase overall physical activity levels among kids and the ways in which Canada can improve our grade based on success stories from other countries.

Promoting Active Transportation by Sharing Lessons from the 2014 Report Card on Children’s Physical Activity. Read more.

Why it’s time to legislate physical activity for our kids

One thing that we know for certain: Telling the kids to “just go outside and play” doesn’t work. We need to stop dragging out that blithe statement. It completely fails to acknowledge the complexity of the issue, and it’s not getting us anywhere. Read more.

Travel With Care Campaign to Melt Icy Road Relations

Travel With Care, launched by PeopleForBikes, aims to inform the general public that every bike rider is a neighbor, friend, family member – just a normal person who chooses to bike. The change of the leading word from the campaign that inspired this idea is aimed at all people on the streets in an effort to “melt icy relations on the road.” Read more.

Sauvons NOTRE Route verte!

Le réseau cyclable de la Route verte, un levier de développement économique panquébécois depuis 20 ans, est menacé à la suite de la décision du gouvernement d'abolir son programme d'entretien. Lisez plus.

Calgary - Downtown bike lane designs: What you need to know

For much of the routes, a double white line and green plastic posts will mark the division between two wheels and four. (They’re flimsier than bollards, and cheaper, bicycle co-ordinator Tom Thivener says.) In areas where parking sits between the bike lanes and the car lanes, a small concrete curb will get nailed into the road, similar to the bumpers in outdoor parking lots — except with the same green posts. And planters may be installed at some areas, too. Read more.

Quiet changes intended to make Calgary a little friendlier to bikes: Are they working?

The bicycle news in Calgary has been dominated in recent months by ongoing debate about the forthcoming downtown cycle-track network trial. And for good reason: It’s a big development.
But City Hall has been quietly making changes to cycling outside of downtown, with disparate tweaks that have largely flown under the radar over the past few months. Read more.

Declining Walkability Plays a Big Role in China's Obesity Problem

A paper recently published in the journal Preventive Medicine examines the connections between obesity, income, and the built environment in two of China’s major cities, Shanghai and Hangzhou. Read more.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Obesity's global costs hit $2 trillion a year, report suggests

A new report by the McKinsey Global Institute released Thursday that the global cost of obesity has risen to $2 trillion annually — nearly as much as smoking or the combined impact of armed violence, war and terrorism. Read more.

Vision and Courage: What’s Needed to Build Bicycle Culture in Vancouver

For the second consecutive municipal election, bicycles were “front and centre” when Vancouverites went to the polls on Saturday, as the two mayoral candidates vying for incumbent Gregor Robertson’s job tried their best to have it both ways. Read more.

Webinar - "Rethinking Streets: An Evidence-Based Guide to 25 Complete Street Transformations"

Date: December 3, 2014, 1:00 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. ET
Presenters: Marc Schlossberg (Univ. of Oregon)
Host: Initiative for Bicycle & Pedestrian Innovation
Cost: Free
Details & Registration:

Report - Walking is Going Places

America Walks is pleased to once again partner with Jay Walljasper, author and speaker, to be able to offer access to his latest report Walking is Going Places on our website.

A 'People-Centred' New Mayor for Victoria

Helps said she also wants to do more to help the homeless, improve affordable housing, and promote "active" transportation options, such as walking and cycling. Read more.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

U.S. - The Federal Government is Making Your Commute Worse

The primary claim of a report released today, Subsidizing Congestion, by TransitCenter and The Frontier Group describes the numerous ways in which a relatively obscure U.S. tax policy impacts commuters. The commuter tax benefit is a subsidy that allows employees to withhold money from their paychecks, tax-free, to spend on transit usage, parking fees, and other commute-related expenses. Read more.

Halifax bike license plan gets no traction

A Dartmouth councillor thinks it's time to consider licensing adult cyclists who are 18 years old and older. "I think there would be more control over what they'd do. They'll be identified," said Gloria McCluskey. Read more.

Calgary - Sandy Beach Bridge ready to open

Eighteen months after the June 2013 flood destroyed three pedestrian bridges located in Calgary’s southwest along the Elbow River, the first of the three bridges will re-open. On Sun., Nov. 23, at 12 noon, Mayor Nenshi will cut a ribbon officially opening the bridge. Calgarians are invited to be part of this opening celebration and be one of the first to cross the new bridge. Read more.

Quebec Cuts Funding to Route Verte – Outcry from Cycling Community and Municipalities

As part of the Quebec government’s new austerity measures, some $2.8 million has been cut from programs to maintain the Route verte, a 5,358km network of bike paths across “the Belle Province.”  As a result of the cuts, Vélo Québec, the bicycle lobby group that championed the creation of Route verte over the past decade, predicts the closing of certain sections of the network in 2015. Read more.

Edmonton - Opinion: Quality infrastructure will pay dividends

The Edmonton Bike Coalition represents more than 1,000 Edmontonians who support city council’s recent plans to build a network of high-quality bike routes in our central neighbourhoods. This plan will provide a safe, healthy transportation option that will encourage more of us to get outside, and support the growing number of people who already bike by giving them a safe place to do so. The installation of high-quality bike routes in our central areas can transform Edmonton for the better. Read more.

Winnipeg - Plan for new suburb in city's northwest moves on to council for approval

A proposal for a new suburb in Winnipeg's northwest is one step closer to reality, after a city committee approved a plan for the area known as "Precinct E." The proposal by development company Genstar would also call for four parks and a number of active transportation links. Read more.

Saskatoon asking for another 7.3 per cent tax bump - One third earmarked for roads, sidewalks and back alleys

"It's funding things like our bridge reserve, it's funding our civic facilities financing plan, it's funding our active transportation reserve -- it's funding all sorts of things," said Totland, adding that if the money diverted to those ends was shifted back to the services side, it's very likely growth would be paying for growth. But, Totland pointed out that capital spending is also needed in a growing city. Read more.

Winnipeg - South Perimeter overpasses nearly done

The work included reconstruction and paving of the four traffic lanes, installation of new guardrail protection, and the addition of an improved active transportation lane along Pembina for pedestrians and cyclists. Read more.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Montreal's Saint-Catherine Street Could Be Transformed Into A Year Round Pedestrian Mall

A specific stretch of Sainte Catherine street, between Bleury and Atwater, has been the focus of many conversations within Montreal, as the city ponders which of the four proposed projects by Projet Saint Catherine Ouest will best serve the public. La Direction de santé publique (DSP) de Montréal don’t agree with any of the 4 plans and believe St. Catherine should be made a full-blown pedestrian zone, with no cars allowed on the downtown street, reports La Presse. Read more.

Video - Should cars and bikes be separated?

Many city planners are now trying to separate motorists and cyclists as more and more people take to two wheels. New York City now has 400 miles of bike lanes and has just passed a law to reduce the speed limit to 25mph - to reduce casualties and increase levels of cycling. Video.

Victoria - Election 2014: Mayoral candidate Lisa Helps

I would like to bring Victoria into the 21st century by improving our active transportation networks, nurturing our creative city and building walkable, liveable neighbourhoods. Read more.

Alberni’s ‘can-do’ attitude bodes well for trails: consultant

City hall hosted a larger crowd than usual on Tuesday, Nov. 4 for a presentation on “Moving forward on Active Transportation and Trail Networks.” The presentation, organized by city economic manager Pat Deakin, featured Laurel Sliskovic from Sociable Scientists Inc. and Nicole Vaugeois, co-director for the World Leisure Centre of Excellence in Sustainability and Innovation at Vancouver Island University. Read more.

Waterloo - Hillside Park paving project on hold after Waterloo neighbours complain

Some residents in the area around Hillside Park are furious with city officials they say intentionally failed to consult them on the paving of an 1,100-metre, three-metre-wide trail through the natural area. Read more.

More Edmonton bike lanes six years away if council balks at funding in upcoming budget

The current proposed capital budget only has a bike lane for 83 Avenue funded, with Councillor Scott McKeen “optimistic” the 102 Avenue bike lane will also get funding. But beyond that, it could be several years until casual and regular cyclists could see some type of cycling infrastructure. Read more.

Cycling is taking over from golf as preferred pastime of former proferssionals

Cycling has its moments. It appears to have become the new golf for former professional sportsmen. So, this year I have climbed Alpe d’Huez with the former England cricket fitness coach, Huw Bevan, and completed the gruelling 140-mile Dragon Ride in Wales with the former Wales scrum half, Andy Moore, who also finished his third Ironman event this year. Read more.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Road Pricing and Parking Workshop - Toronto, November 24

Traffic congestion in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) continues to increase despite unprecedented funding of regional and local transit. The Liberal government has promised to invest another $15 billion over the next 10 years so the GTHA can catch up to other world-class cities.  While this new money is very welcome, Canadian and international studies demonstrate that, in the absence of comprehensive mobility pricing policies, new transit and road capacity induce more travel which ultimately leads to more gridlock. Read more.

Mississippi Mills ON - What’s all this about Active Transportation?

Please note! This isn’t just for guys like me who ride bikes. It’s for all of us. It’s about how we all get around; that’s 8 year old kids heading to school or 80 year old neighbours walking to the store. This topic is broad and affects our quality of life in Mississippi Mills. Read more.

Montréal - Cycling, and some construction projects end for the season

Saturday will be the last day to cycle across the St. Lawrence River adjacent to the Champlain Bridge, as the Ice Bridge bicycle path will close for the season on Saturday at 10 p.m. The bicycle link to Parc Jean Drapeau from St-Lambert, over the St. Lawrence Seaway, will also be closed according to the same schedule. The season for Bixi, Montreal’s bike rental service, is also drawing to a close with all stations shutting down as of midnight on Sunday. More information at Read more.

Calgary - Details of cycle track network on display at information sessions

Six months after city council first approved a year-long pilot project for cycle tracks in the Centre City, the designs for the upcoming bike network are now on display to the public.

A series of information sessions, which began on Wednesday, will showcase the city’s plans for three new cycle tracks and a shared-use space on Stephen Avenue. Construction on the cycle tracks — which are physically separated from the rest of traffic by a barrier — will begin in the spring, with an expected opening of July 2015. Read more.

Simcoe County is overweight, but there’s hope

Simcoe-Muskoka’s rate of obesity is higher than the provincial and national averages. In 2013, 20.6 per cent of Simcoe-Muskoka’s population aged 18 and over were considered obese, states The United Way of Greater Simcoe County’s VitalSigns report released in October.  This is compared to Ontario’s average of 17.9 per cent and the Canadian average of 18.8 per cent. Read more.

Nova Scotia - Province announces active transportation funding for Avon region

Kings South MLA Keith Irving, on behalf of Andrew Younger, Nova Scotia’s Energy minister, announced $10,000 in funding for the Avon Region Active Transportation Plan. Read more.

Waterloo - Hillside Park plan doesn’t address cycling needs

The City of Waterloo has a transportation problem and it also has a communication problem. In inadequately seeking to address the first problem, it has exacerbated the second one. Waterloo has fallen behind other comparable jurisdictions in the encouragement of bicycling as a viable form of transportation. In a poorly conceived attempt to address this failing, the city has chosen to run a three-metre-wide paved path along a 1.1-kilometre trail that runs through Hillside Park. Read more.

Is sidewalk cycling really dangerous, or just scary, like a roller coaster?

Advocates for a law against bicycling on sidewalks talk about safety. But with so few injuries or fatalities that involve sidewalk cycling, is this more about perception than reality? Maybe it's like roller coasters, which are designed to be scary but not dangerous. Read more.

City says there are 3 bike-vehicle accidents a week in Hamilton

Numbers from the City of Hamilton's traffic engineering division showed an average of 157 cyclists had a collision with a vehicle every year in the past five years. Eighty-three per cent of accidents result in some form of injury, and 16 per cent result in only property damage. The average has stayed stable over the past five years, peaking at 168 in 2013, but dropping to 153 collisions in the past 12 months. Read more.

Majority of Calgary commuters hopping on the bus or train to get downtown

Calgary may still be considered a car-centric city, but newly released data suggests a majority of commuters opt for hopping on a bus or train over getting behind the wheel for their daily downtown commute.
The city’s 2014 “downtown cordon activity” data shows 361,000 Calgarians pass through the downtown core on average each weekday, with half now taking public transit — a significant shift over the past two decades. Read more.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Canmore transportation plan calls for active modes & parking management

Canmore administration will look to the coming draft capital budget discussions to implement some recent recommendations of its Integrated Transportation Plan. To that end, the latest draft brings forward a lengthy list of recommendations aimed at encouraging walking and cycling while improving on existing parking infrastructure and updating town policy around transportation, some of which could be reflected in the forthcoming 2015 draft capital budget. Read more.

Radio - Toronto city councillor wants to charge cyclists a fee for locking bikes to poles

"I am tired of these bicycle-types moaning and groaning about cycling infrastructure without coughing-up a few bucks to pay for all the things they so desperately want." Listen.

Walkable Urbanism on the Rise

Turning a metro space into a more walkable urban space, though costly, can reap benefits from economic growth to an increase in development. Walkable urban spaces have a higher amount of wealth and a larger number of college graduates than less walkable areas. From an increase in money spent per week to decreased crime rates—the benefits of walkability are beneficial to all. Read more.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Mills Active Transportation E-Survey

This survey is part of the project to develop an Active Transportation Master Plan for the Town of Mississippi Mills. Your answers will be used to develop the Active Transportation Plan and will be an input into the upcoming Active Transportation Workshop "Let's Move!". Read more.

A step toward pedestrian right-of-way in Hamilton

Pedestrians are poised to get the right-of-way more often when crossing Hamilton's reputedly dangerous streets — just as soon as the province makes it legal to do so. Read more.

Bike lanes great for active travellers in Midland and Penetanguishene

Thanks to all concerned – councillors who promoted it, Friends of Fuller for lobbying, councils that approved it, engineers and town staff, and the workers who built it – the Fuller Avenue bike lanes are done and ready to be used. Read more.

People seldom charged when cyclists get ‘doored,’ Vancouver data shows

A provision in B.C.’s Motor Vehicle Act forbids people from opening a car door on the side of moving traffic unless it is safe to do so. But Vancouver police issued only 22 tickets for the offence between 2009 and 2013. In that same period, 370 dooring incidents were reported to ICBC. And that figure only includes incidents serious enough to trigger an insurance claim. Read more.

It turns out that protected bike lanes are fantastic for walking safety, too

Protected bike lanes are good at making it safer to bike. But they are great at making it safer to walk. As dozens of thought leaders on street safety gather in New York City this morning for the Vision Zero for Cities Symposium, some of them will be discussing this little-known fact: on New York streets that received protected bike lanes from 2007 to 2011, total traffic injury rates – most of which, in New York, injure people walking – fell by 12 to 52 percent. Read more.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Netherlands Gets the World's First Solar-Powered Bike Lane

It's tough to make cycling any greener, but the Dutch have done just that with a bike lane that powers street lights and even houses. What's being billed as the world's first solar-powered bike path will officially open on November 12 in Krommenie, a town northwest of Amsterdam. Read more.

If you build bike paths, cyclists will come

Science says you should keep babies away from ledges and going bald is upsetting. The latest from the Journal of Duh: More people ride their bicycles when infrastructure makes it easier and safer to get around on two wheels. Read more.

Europe's cycling economy has created 650,000 jobs

Europe’s cycling industry now employs more people than mining and quarrying and almost twice as many as the steel industry, according to the first comprehensive study of the jobs created by the sector. Read more.

Over 70 Manitoulin youth attend Engaging Your Community event

Over 70 First Nations youth between the ages of 8 and 17 from five area communities including Aundeck Omni Kaning (AOK), Wikwemikong, Sagamok, Sheguiandah and Whitefish River gathered for the KidActive-Healthy Children, Healthy Spaces Engaging Your Community event last week in AOK. As a follow up to the event, community leaders from across Manitoulin would be meeting this week to look at how the communities can initiate change to improve access to outdoor spaces and active transportation (ie. bike trails, routes to school). Read more.

Waterloo - Pave Hillside Park trail — now

It's time for the protesters to get out of the way and for the machines to get into Waterloo's Hillside Park to pave a public trail. Read more.

Golden BC - Council candidates talk attraction in our final election question

We need to ensure that we have opportunities for everyone, for every age, regardless of financial status. I want to see continued support for our current recreation programs. And I will work towards enhancements to our active transportation systems; a great way to make transportation more accessible and affordable for everyone. Read more.

Edmonton - David Finkelman's parents urge drivers to slow down

The parents of David Finkelman, the 27-year-old killed while crossing Whyte Avenue in January, urged drivers in the city to slow down. "It was noon hour, there was little traffic, and the weather was clear," said Steve Finkelman,​ following the sentencing of the driver Wednesday. "The driver who hit David didn't see him until it was too late. Read more.

9 Things Drivers Need to Stop Saying in the Bikes vs. Cars Debate

There are certain things guaranteed to set off an internet firestorm. Talk about climate change, mention Monsanto, or bring up the treatment of women in video games. And you can, especially in recent years, piss off a whole bunch of people simply by writing about bikes and cars. Nothing seems to bring out the angry caps lock and personal attacks faster than transportation issues. Read more.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Audio - The Modern Moloch

On the streets of early 20th Century America, nothing moved faster than 10 miles per hour. Responsible parents would tell their children, “Go outside, and play in the streets. All day.”
And then the automobile happened. And then automobiles began killing thousands of children, every year. Listen.

A new series of documents on innovative municipal norms promoting safe active transportation

In recent years, actors from various sectors across Canada have tried to restore the status of active transportation modes as being important for everyday, functional transportation, for reasons related to health, quality of life, sustainable development or the efficient use of public space.

To support them in this endeavour, the NCCHPP will publish a series of papers documenting innovative municipal norms that have the potential to help create environments promoting safe, active transportation by changing the design or organization of public roadway networks. Read more.

Sherwood Park - County looks to improve school safety

Strathcona County has introduced a new partnership to make traffic around schools as safe as possible. “Neighbourhood traffic safety has been identified as a priority area in our community,” Debbie Rawson, traffic safety liaison for the county said during a presentation to the Priorities Committee on Tuesday, Oct. 28. Read more.

los Angeles - Biking and walking likely to be major issues in spring city elections

L.A.'s bike politics can prove treacherous. Councilman Gil Cedillo has been embroiled in a nasty feud with activists, including Bray-Ali, who are furious that he halted a road diet in his district. In the recent race to replace County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, bike lane advocates accused former state Sen. Sheila Kuehl of taking a pro-car, "windshield" approach to the issue. Read more.

Extreme green plan for Muskoka

Proceeding through town, our eager visitors are pleased to see a variety of inviting shops and cafés, with umbrellas and awnings inviting them to linger. Muskoka Street has been made into a one-way street to accommodate wider sidewalks and angled parking. Some side streets are pedestrian malls with fountains, live music and of course, free Wifi. Read more.

'Considerable reservations' expressed about Boris Johnson cycle superhighway plans

The City of London Corporation, planning authority of the Square Mile, has considered its response to Boris Johnson’s most recent flagship cycling policy, a pair of segregated “superhighways” running through the centre of the capital. A report has confirmed its support for the principle, saying this “fully accords” with core policy objectives and that a reduction in motor traffic could assist with improving air quality, tackling climate change, enhancing health and reducing noise. Yet a draft formal response confirms “considerable reservations” about the plans as they stand. Read more.

Millennials like bikes and walking more than cars

A recent study by the nonprofit consumer group U.S. PIRG based in Boston found that millennials — or those born roughly from 1983 to 2000 — are driving less in favor of walking, biking and catching the bus or train, if one is available. “It’s (a car) less of a need,” said Phineas Baxandall, a co-author of the report. “If it’s not a convenience, they don’t need it.” Read more.

Toronto - The chance to change Yonge Street

Wider sidewalks, reduced vehicle traffic, more patios and cleaned-up accessible laneways are leading priorities for Yonge St. lovers participating in a survey about the future of the avenue’s southernmost strip. Read more.

Cycling today and tomorrow

About 250 million Europeans already cycle, generating an annual environmental, social and economic benefit of around €210 billion. Europe’s cities are set to continue to grow, hereby adding pressure on scarce resources such as high-quality public spaces, efficient transport systems and a healthy and attractive urban environment for both its citizens and businesses. Cities are rethinking their mobility systems to become fit for the future. Read more.

New York - City Council bids to ban using cellphones while cycling

With the City Council set to review a new distracted-bicycling law that, like the current rules for car drivers, would bar two-wheelers from texting or even talking without a hands-free device, The Post observed dozens of speeding bikers in Central Park using their phones to text and even take videos as they raced along the paths. Read more

St. Thomas officially opens new L&PS Rail Corridor Trail

Work is wrapping up on the new L&PS Rail Corridor Trail, a 2.2 km paved surface that runs from Wellington St. to Parkside. Read more.

Waterloo protesters stall Hillside Trail paving, but at cost to city

Protesters got in the way of paving on Hillside Trail in Waterloo on Monday morning, creating a delay the city says will cost $10,000. And the man leading the protest sat on a city task force that recommended a new trail surface in 2010. Paul Raymond said he didn't expect work would go ahead, and that the city still failed to consult everyone. Read more.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Singapore - URA chief planner cycles for work and fun

His return to biking has opened his eyes to gaps in the existing infrastructure. "You discover how you can make things easier. Little details count. Like whether there's a small kerb and whether the drain grating lies one way or the other because if it's parallel to the rider and you're using a bicycle with slim tyres, your wheel can get trapped and you may fall," he said. Read more.

Toronto - Walking everywhere lets me see the city, and get back in shape

If you ever needed another reason congestion on Toronto’s streets is a critical issue (was there recently an election?), consider that during rush hour I can get to where I need to go in the downtown sector on foot faster than this so-called “Rocket” that costs money, doesn’t use up any calories and is often uncomfortable. Read more.

6 more pedestrians hit on Toronto streets

Five pedestrians were hurt after being struck by vehicles over a span of just a couple of hours in Toronto on Tuesday evening, according to police. A sixth pedestrian was struck Wednesday morning. The spate of collisions comes one day after police launched a week-long pedestrian safety campaign. Read more.

Diagonal walkways put drivers, pedestrians at different cross purposes

Studies show they're safer for pedestrians, but motorists find them annoying because they have to sit longer at red lights. Those extra wait times have led to recurring — and at times heated — debate in car-centric Los Angeles over whether scrambles are worth the trade-offs. Read more.

Australia - Police liken cyclists to cockroaches online

A Queensland police officer has likened cyclists to "cockroaches" in an online row involving the state's top cop. The war of words erupted after Victorian-based advocacy group posted comments on its Facebook page about a truck driver's breach of Queensland's one-metre passing laws. Read more.

Bicycle-Friendly City Infrastructure in U.S. Significantly Increases Cycling to Work by Residents, Which Can Improve Health of Locals

New research ties bike-friendly infrastructure changes in United States cities to increases in "active commuting" by bike-riding residents, which can improve and sustain weight[i] and reduce cardiac risk[ii]. The research comes as many of the largest U.S. cities, including New York, Chicago and Minneapolis, add hundreds of miles of bike lanes and launch bike-sharing programs. Read more.

Monday, November 3, 2014

As Boomers Age, Walkable Cities Become More Important

It seems that the two cohorts have also found themselves in a natural alliance on urban planning. Both the old and the young, according to surveys, want to live where they can walk, use transit, and enjoy public space. Read more.

Will New Yorkers Warm Up to a New 25-Mile-Per-Hour Speed Limit?

The driver ran her car right up onto the concrete bollards on the pedestrian island in the middle of West End Avenue, leaving its front end suspended in the air. She was one of two drivers to run into this new feature—designed to slow cars in this residential neighborhood and save pedestrians’ lives—in as many weeks. The woman driving reportedly told cops that she just didn’t see it. Read more.

U.K. - Cycling is not just for 'white young men', says Richard Burden MP

The row over a Birmingham councillor's claim that millions spent on cycling is benefitting "white young men" has reached the House of Commons. Birmingham MP Richard Burden, Labour's official transport spokesman, hit out at Deirdre Alden's claims that Birmingham's £23 million plan to encourage cycling was discriminatory. Read more.

City councillor wants skateboarding to be allowed on Montreal streets

There is a move afoot to legalize skateboarding on Montreal streets.  Proponents say it's about time to stop ticketing people for getting around in a healthy and environmentally friendly way. Read more.

Windsor - Share the Road Cycling Coalition seeking to boost number of university cyclists

Organizers of the University of Windsor’s Share the Road Cycling Coalition want to pump up the number of cyclists at the school in hopes of reeling in the competition in the province-wide campaign. Read more.

Strategy developed to increase physical activity among residents of Yarmouth

There are five major goals that have been set out in the strategy. Three of the goals are consistent with ones the province has embarked on.  This includes increasing physical activity for youth, increasing physical activity for females across their lifespan and increasing active transportation. Read more.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Safe Routes to School Programs Can Boost Walking and Bicycling by 30 Percent

Streetsblog reports on a new study that found schools with Safe Routes to School programs could boost the number of children walking and bicycling to school by 31 percent over a five-year period. Read more.

City Spotlight – Montreal, Quebec

With over 403 miles (650 kilometers) of bikeways, including 213 miles (342 kilometers) physically separated from motor vehicles, Montreal is truly North America’s bicycle capital. Read more.

Does Cycling Culture Have a Drinking Problem?

The same Governors Highway Safety Association study finds that 88 percent of the victims of fatal cycling accidents in 2012 were men. Worse still, 28 percent of all fatal-accident victims in 2012 had a BAC of more than 0.08 percent. The risk question aside, is bro culture claiming cyclists' lives? Read more.

Cycling advocates want municipalities to help #ungapthemap

If you've ever tried to cycle from Vancouver to Steveston, or from New Westminster to the Tswawwassen ferry, you've probably found that some of the bike routes to get there are not so safe, or straightforward. Read more.

Friday, October 31, 2014

E-book: Cyclists & Cycling Around the World

Cyclists & Cycling Around the World is an inspiring literary contribution to the development of cycle-friendly cities throughout the whole world. The book contains articles on city planning and the benefits of cycling and also on the enormous work carried out by cycling organisations around the world promoting cycling and training children. Read more.

London Is Showing How Cities Should Treat Dirty Cars in the 21st Century

London is already the biggest city in the world to have any form of tax that restricts driving in the center—the congestion charge is currently £11.50 ($18.60) per day to travel into central London during the working week. Exemptions from the scheme include lower-emitting vehicles, motor bikes, and electric cars. The city also has a Low Emission Zone, which applies to the whole of Greater London throughout the year, and charges up to £200 a day for heavy-polluting trucks and buses that come into the capital. Read more.

'Sidewalk to nowhere’ in Edmonton’s north end called unsafe

“It just basically ends. It's a sidewalk to nowhere,” said Sippel while on a walk in the area with CBC.
“Every day you see people running across, just trying to make it in time.Usually what will happen is that they wait for the light to turn red and once it does, and the cars kind of break up, they'll run across.” Read more.

Hamilton - Active Transportation Roundup, October 2014 Edition

It has been a beautiful autumn in Hamilton, but with cold weather approaching, the City is winding down its outdoor Public Works so this will probably be the last roundup until next spring. Read more.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

WHO/Europe and ECF join forces for a training webinar on the updated WHO HEAT

The World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe and the European Cyclists’ Federation are collaborating to provide a free training webinar that will present the updated WHO HEAT (Health Economic Assessment Tool) with a focus on cycling. The webinar will take place on the 12th November at 1pm. Read more.

Halifax - Cycling coalition seeks truck side guards

A local cycling group wants Halifax to follow Boston and Montreal’s lead and consider new safety equipment for its trucks. At least one municipal contractor is a step ahead of the Halifax Cycling Coalition’s proposal to mandate side guards on city and city-contracted trucks. Side guards, which are useful in the kind of collision that killed 30-year-old Johanna Dean in May, appear to be an option for some of Royal Environmental Inc.’s fleet, said general manager Al Abraham. Read more.

Halifax - Committee tasked to create plan for development of Halifax core

Halifax’s urban design manager Jacob Ritchie told the committee that the centre plan will also reflect other plans the municipality recently updated, including ones for active transportation, transit services and economic strategy. Read more.

Barrie - Healthier road diet includes more walkers and cyclists

Did you ever wonder what a better ‘diet’ for our roads would be? Given what we know about physical activity and human health, and the pollution from cars and trucks, a healthier road diet would include a greater proportion of pedestrians and cyclists sharing the road with motor vehicles. Read more.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

How Memphis Became a Great Bicycle City

When you think of Memphis, you probably think of Elvis, FedEx, or maybe on a more somber note, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. So you might be surprised to learn that Memphis is also becoming one of America's great bicycle towns. Read more.

Toronto Election Report Card: Transportation

While big ticket transit plans have been the most talked-about aspect of this election, they’re not the only part of the transportation equation. Torontonians get around on foot, by bike and in cars. So which candidate has the best plan to get the city moving? Read more.

Are LA’s Walkable Neighborhoods and Bike Lanes Only for the Creative Class?

The “Complete Streets” concept in urban planning and design has been hailed as nothing less than a revolution. “North America is on the verge of a new paradigm,” writes Mobility magazine. “At the forefront of the ‘street revolution’ is the concept of Complete Streets.” The concept, which focuses on making streets safe and accessible to everyone, is supposed to challenge both our auto-dominated mindset and our sprawling urban form by reimagining “streets for people.” The promised result: cities that are more walkable, cyclable, livable—and more sustainable. Read more.

Taipei to widen sidewalks to make lanes for bicycles

Taipei is to tilt the balance of space available on the city’s streets toward cyclists, Taipei City Government Traffic Engineering Office Director Tiger Chen (陳學台) said yesterday. The roadways are to be narrowed to make room for more sidewalk space, which is to be partly lined with trees and include bicycle paths, benches and public art. Read more.

Manitoba - The future of U-Pass, public transportation on campus

In light of the upcoming referendum in which students will vote to determine the outcome of the universal transit pass (U-Pass), the U-Pass referendum forum was held to shed some light on the evidence and issues on each side of the debate. The Manitoban, University of Manitoba Graduate Students’ Association (UMGSA), and the University of Manitoba Students’ Union (UMSU) collaborated to host the forum about the future of public transportation on campus. Read more.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Hymne à la lenteur du piéton

Feux de circulation qui ne laissent pas le temps de traverser, voitures qui coupent les piétons au feu vert… Voilà des scénarios typiques qui posent la question de la place accordée aux piétons. Aux yeux de plusieurs, la gestion de la circulation privilégie avant tout l’automobile, et il est temps que les choses changent. Read more.

Is it possible to look stylish while cycling to work?

This is the big question, dividing the lycra-clad and the lycra averse. Read more.

Russian cyclists bringing bike culture to Moscow

Harsh winters and the world’s worst road congestion make the Russian capital an inhospitable place for cyclists. So why does the number of riders keep on rising? Read more.

Province gives $62,000 for seven-kilometre trail development from Hardwood Hill to Scotsburn

On behalf of Energy Minister Andrew Younger, Stroink announced that government would provide $62,000 to the Pictou County Trails Association to help complete seven kilometres of the multi-use Short Line Trail. The trail will connect with the existing five kilometres to form a path that is about 12 kilometres long. Read more.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Your U-Lock Is Basically Worthless, but Don't Worry

Thieves can quickly pop open the lock with a car jack or pipe, but there are ways to protect yourself. Read more.

Will Seattle’s Helmet Law Be a Drag on Its New Bike-Share System?

This bike-share launch is a little more complicated than most, because Seattle has a mandatory helmet law for riders of all ages. Riding a bike in Seattle without the proper head gear can land you an $81 ticket. Pronto bike-share will eventually have helmet rental equipment, but that won’t be available for about six months, so instead the city is loaning helmets on the honor system. Read more.

Bicycles as Business Tools at Facebook

One of the perks of working at Facebook is access to a free, full-service, bike repair shop located in the middle of campus. Commonly referred to as “The Hub”, the shop opened a year and a half ago as a place to help employees get to and from work efficiently. Activities at The Hub are overseen by Kurt Martin, a consultant hired by Facebook and owner of Bikes Make Life Better. While Martin oversees, the day- to-day operations are run by Shea Mack, the bike shop manager. Read more.

Victoria city staff call for end to downtown skateboarding ban

Victoria’s ban on skateboarding downtown should be lifted and bylaw officers should no longer be allowed to seize skateboards, say city staff. If the changes are adopted, skateboarding on sidewalks would still be prohibited. Skateboarders would be required to use the roads just like cyclists, according to the report to be considered by councillors Thursday. Read more.

Moving Ahead: The Economic Impact of Reducing Physical Inactivity and Sedentary Behaviour

According to a report by The Conference Board of Canada, getting just 10 per cent of Canadian adults to sit less and move more would reduce Canada’s health care costs by $2.6 billion and inject $7.5 billion into the Canadian economy by the year 2040. This report, Moving Ahead: The Economic Impact of Reducing Physical Inactivity and Sedentary Behaviour, was released today with a joint media release by the Conference Board and ParticipACTION. Read more.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Orange joins call to support new London Cycle Superhighways

Communications giant Orange, as well as big name companies Unilever and Deloitte, have joined calls to support London’s next generation segregated cycle superhighways proposed to crisscross the capital, including the 18 mile ‘Crossrail for bikes’. Read more.

The City of Paris' New Bike Plan Focuses on Infrastructure Projects for 2014-2020

More parking spots for bikes, new bike paths on major streets, extension of zones with 30km/h speed limits, and perhaps wider bike paths or the prohibition of cars at temporary markets. These are just some of the measures that are a part of the new “Bike Plan” put forth by the Mayor of Paris. Read more.

Mapping website highlights the pitfalls of cycling routes

A new crowdsourced mapping website — called — aims to supplement crash data from the Insurance Corp. of B.C. with personal experiences of local cyclists’ near-misses, hazards — including black ice or potholes — and bike thefts. An app also is being developed to allow cyclists to receive automated texts on potential pitfalls along their routes, such as construction. Read more.

Challenges to Citizen Advocacy for Healthy Communities

Of course, no one is opposed to making our neighbourhoods more healthy and age-friendly. They just oppose all the specific actions we need to take to do it. Let me start by arguing that municipal government exists first and foremost to protect and promote public health. Read more.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Drivers who door cyclists, use phones face tougher fines in Ontario

Careless drivers who hit cyclists when opening their doors will be dinged for $300 to $1,000 – up from the previous range of $60 to $300. They will also be slapped with three demerit points. That higher fine range and demerit point hit will also apply to people caught texting or talking on their phones behind the wheel – the toughest law in the country. Read more.

Kelowna - Central Green Development a Done Deal

Plans have been finalized and construction is scheduled to begin for the development of an LEED certified neighborhood on the property where the old Kelowna Senior Secondary School once was. Read more.

Flying Cars Instead of Bikes? Let’s Talk Real Solutions. Now

I really enjoyed this week’s “Fix My Commute,” the inaugural forum in the Washington Post’s America Answers series. And while it was acknowledged again and again that our infrastructure is often operating at third-world levels, one major way to “fix” our commutes was sorely missing from the conversation. Read more.

Bike-Share Is (Still) Struggling to Reach Poor People Across North America

The rise of bike-share as a popular mode of city transportation has been swift and impressive. A new report on the state of North American bike-share, which gives new meaning to the word "comprehensive," puts the total number of users at more than 1.1 million as of 2012. And that's before the launch of new systems in major cities like Chicago, San Francisco, and New York. Read more.

Toronto - Cyclists pedaling Minimum Grid in election

Cycle Toronto has asked candidates to support 100 kilometres of protected bike lanes and 100 kilometres of cycling boulevards by 2018. Read more.

Meaford council candidates talk about their top priorities

Ensuring 'Health in all policies.' I am in alignment with Dr. Hazel Lynn's, Medical Officer of Health for Grey Bruce, call to incorporate 'Health in all policies', as we strive for a healthy community. This includes: supporting and creating employment and business opportunities to address unemployment and underemployment, building healthy homes, improving and maintaining good air and environmental quality, such as through the promotion of active transportation to reduce vehicle emissions, working towards zero waste, incorporating green infrastructure such as renewable energy systems, building healthy, sustainable, food systems and healthy transportation networks and improving accessibility by removing participation barriers, ensuring access to food, recreation and sport opportunities and becoming an 'all-ages-friendly' community. Read more.

Albermi - Cyclists tout green crossing over ravine

While a $5 million dollar vehicle bridge connecting both sides of Port Alberni is already on the Nov. 15 ballot, some residents are looking for a greener option. John Mayba, an avid cyclist and member of the Alberni Valley Transition Town Society (AVTTS) thinks that the city needs to see the Roger Creek ravine as an opportunity rather than an obstacle. Read more.

Citi Bike operator bought up by new company

REQX Ventures will own all of Alta Bicycle Share once the deal is completed and plans to double the number of bikes to 12,000, sources told Capital New York. Read more.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Is Walking the New Running?

We often see data on runners and cyclists, but what about walkers? How about this – did you know MapMyWalk is our fastest growing brand? It’s true. We took a closer look at our walking community and found some pretty interesting statistics. Read more.

Iran’s largest Pedestrian Bridge Inaugurates in Tehran

The opening ceremony of the Iran’s largest pedestrian bridge called “Tabiat Bridge” (Nature Bridge) was held in Tehran attended by Tehran’s Mayor Mohammed-Baqer Qalibaf. The design of this three-level pedestrian bridge is inspired by ancient Iranian architecture in which, bridge was not just a crossing path, linking 2 sides of a river or valley, but It was a place to stay, relax and enjoy beautiful views. Read more.

Walking on air: The most mind-blowing glass floor skywalks in the world

After a $38 million face-lift, the first floor of the Eiffel Tower is now made of glass! Millions of visitors who flock to the landmark each year can look down through the tower’s central void to the ground about 200 feet below. To make things even scarier, the glass safety barriers around the edge incline outward. In honor of the Eiffel Tower's new look, here are the scariest glass-bottomed attractions around the world. Read more.

Improving a City's Disaster Response–With Bikes

Organizers of San Francisco's first Disaster Relief Trials think cyclists can play a critical role in times of emergency. Read more.

Montreal Diary: Cycling has a distinguished history in this city

Cycling for the simple enjoyment of the pastime or for its usefulness as a means of transportation through the congested streets of the city has long been discussed. Read more.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Ottawa - Workshop: Shared Space Design Solutions for Thirty Kilometre Zones

Thirty kilometre zones are quickly becoming known as an efficient and effective way to improve traffic safety, cut pollution and provide new travel choices. But creating a new thirty kilometre zone requires more than simply changing a few signs.

Workshop: Friday, 14 Nov. 2014, 0830-1730 EST, Ottawa, ON Read more.

This Bicycle Gadget Makes Red Lights Turn Green

Electronics buried underneath the road are supposed to detect vehicles at traffic lights. Some magnetic sensors, however, can't detect bikes due to their relative lack of ferrous metals. Other "inductive loop sensors" can detect aluminum, but still might not sense a bike if it's not stopped over the right spot or if the sensor has poor sensitivity. Read more.

Pro Walk/Pro Bike Presentations Online

Presentations from the conference are now available online: View here.

Peterborough’s first Action Transportation and Health Indicators Report

Peterborough’s first Action Transportation and Health Indicators Report has been released! This report showcases the connection between rates of walking and cycling, infrastructure, policy, programming, human and environmental health, and safety. Containing hundreds of unique infographics, this report is among first and most comprehensive benchmarking publications developed in a Canadian municipality. Read more.

Winnipeg - Seven new councillors elected

Janice Lukes has graduated from St. Norbert’s councillor assistant to its representative. In addition to her part-time work for Swandel, Lukes is the former director of the Winnipeg Trails Association and has lobbied for years for increased funding for active transportation trails. Read more.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

‘Groundbreaking’ new study gives big thumbs up to U.S. protected bike lanes

The 179-page report includes detailed analysis of nine different bike facilities (see above) including NE Multnomah Street in Portland. Researchers used a combination of video (204 hours of it), count data, and surveys of users and nearby residents. Read more.

Protected bicycle lanes' safety, livability benefits worth cost of removing car lanes, Portland State study says

Portland transportation planners have ditched a controversial plan to remove auto parking along Northeast and Southeast 28th Avenue to build a separated bike lane. But a new Portland State University study outlining the safety and quality-of-life benefits of so-called "protected bike lanes" will likely give the Portland Bureau of Transportation the push it needs to try the strategy on other busy streets. Read more.

When Planning for Retirement, Consider Transportation

During retirement planning, transportation is often an afterthought. Yet, figuring transportation into plans is essential, experts say. According to the American Journal of Public Health, Americans are outliving their ability to drive safely — a woman, on average, by 10 years, a man by seven. Read more.

Cycling: the benefits of complete networks

A group of New Zealand researchers recently published an excellent paper on the costs and benefits of investing in a complete cycle network and safe street design. Their paper is available online. Read more.

West side traffic a challenge in Waterloo

Regional Coun. Jane Mitchell, who is seeking reelection, said the Ira Needles work should alleviate some traffic. She said active transportation infrastructure will help ease some congestion. "I think when we do (Erb) we have to start looking at the complete streets again — looking at the Grand River Transit route, looking at the bike lanes and sidewalks," Mitchell said. Read more.

Horton (ON) opens stretch of CN Trail

In August, the township undertook a project to upgrade the 6.25 kilometres of trail within its municipal boundaries from the Town of Renfrew to McNab-Braeside. Horton originally purchased the abandoned Canadian National Railway line in 1999. Read more.

Video - The Reverse Toll: Should Governments Pay People Who Walk or Bike?

In his Big Think interview, Tesla's Elon Musk argues that innovation must bridge the technology gap for the time being. That means taking practical decisions to save energy use. See video.

Boston - Pedestrian, cycling access often overlooked

There's been a lot of talk over the years about the importance of a truly multi-modal transportation system, but progress eludes us. Sure, there are “one-offs” that people can point to where transportation projects take a more multi-modal perspective, but the overall approach to transportation planning is still stuck in auto-centric twentieth-century thinking. Many transportation policy makers still behave as if it’s 1960, not 2014.  Read more.

Halifax - St. Mary’s plans Boo Bash bike helmet giveaway

The St. Mary’s University Student Health Center and Office of Residence Life want to help ensure the well-being of children and students by giving away bicycle helmets. Through a grant from the Texas Medical Association and the Texas Academy of Family Practice, the “Rattlers Have Heart” organization will distribute and properly size 150 helmets to children at Boo Bash on Tuesday, Oct. 28, from 6-9 p.m. Read more.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Province Introducing New Legislation to Make Ontario’s Roads Safer

Ontario is introducing legislation that, if passed, would help keep the province's roads among the safest in North America by reducing collisions, injuries and fatalities:

  • Requiring drivers to wait until a pedestrian has completely crossed the road before proceeding at school crossings and pedestrian crossovers.

  • Increasing fines and demerits for drivers who door cyclists, and requiring all drivers to maintain a distance of one metre when passing cyclists, where practicable.

  • Read more.

    Saskatoon hosts meetings on protected bike lanes

    One method to make cycling a little safer, protected bike lanes will be the topic of two open house meetings. This is the second time the city has attempted to launch a protected bike lanes test project to assess their value. The original attempt failed, as business in the downtown raise concerns about parking. Read more.

    Toronto - Road Pricing and Parking Workshop

    The Transport Futures Road Pricing and Parking Workshop is a must-attend event if you work in or have an interest in transportation policy/planning/engineering, transit, cycling, walking, energy, climate change, infrastructure, P3s, asset management, engineering, law, health, social justice, taxation, business/trade, finance/economics, education, social marketing, politics and/or sustainability. Read more.

    U.K. - New evidence highlights the value of cycling to health

    The parliamentary debate on cycling last Thursday (16 October 2014) was a wake-up call to government on cycling. The coalition government has been floundering, with a botched timeline for release of their Cycling Delivery plan. In a dramatic and unexpected move, this was finally released just hours before the debate began. Read more.

    How to safely bike to school

    The grant spurred a group of eight parents to form a bicycle committee to plan opportunities for children to bicycle. The parent bicycle committee organized several events in spring 2013 such as Bike to School Days and "Learn to Ride" class at the school. Read more.

    A New Tool for Cost-Benefit Analysis of Transportation Projects

    Although the above examples have discussed the potential application of unit costs to active transportation projects, they can be readily applied to monetize the transportation impacts of various infrastructure projects or transportation strategies, across many different modes. This, therefore, makes them a very useful tool for practitioners and governments to add an additional and very important dimension to the analysis of such initiatives – especially since existing methods to monetize transportation impacts are so scarce. Read more.

    A Norwegian Town Paid People A "Reverse Toll" If They Walked Or Biked

    A few weeks ago, as cyclists and pedestrians passed a certain point on the main street in the town of Lillestrøm, Norway, they were pulled over by local officials--not to be ticketed or warned about wearing a bike helmet, but to be handed cash. Read more.

    Canada Needs To Adopt a 'Health In All Policies' Approach

    In countries like Finland, the idea of Health in All Policies has been influencing public policy for some time. This approach to policy applies a social determinants of health lens in sectors from education and finance to housing, transportation and social assistance. Read more.