Leaders of local mountain bike club Disciples of Dirt (DoD) MTB Eugene plan to speak at Monday’s April 26th, Eugene City Council meeting in support of re-opening the Ribbon Trail to cyclists. They will urge the city to reconsider the recent decision, and would like as many cyclists in the audience as possible to help show support. This is a chance for Eugene’s splintered cycling factions to begin to unite and support each other on key advocacy issues. The group is meeting in front of the City Council Chambers (on Pearl Street between 7th and 8th) at 7pm to go over details, and then will enter together shortly before the meeting begins at 7:30.
If you can’t make it, you can still view the City Council WebCast
An announcement posted on the DoD webpage explains their position:
Attention Mountain Bikers and Trail Supporters!! In light of the City of Eugene’s recent decision to ban Mountain bikes from the Ribbon trail (the newest addition to the Ridgeline trail system) we are going to go to the Eugene City Council Meeting next Monday to let them know that we are disappointed in this decision. We will present numerous reasons why Mountain bikers should be allowed to share the use of this trail, as well as many of our other local trails. We hope to inform the City Council that this issue is important to many people, and educate them about how more mountain bike trails are consistent with the City’s stated goals and values.
Read this article for background on the Ribbon trail decision:
We hope to bring together a large group of polite and respectable cyclists to attend this Council meeting to show our strength in numbers. We will have a few designated folks speak in front of Council, and we want everyone else there just to show the size and diversity of our group.
We are asking people to show up in front of the City Council Chambers (On Pearl Street between 7th and 8th) at 7pm on Monday April 26th. We will gather and go over some info, and then as a group we will enter the Council Chamber a few minutes before the 7:30 meeting start.
It really is critical to try and get a large number of people together at this meeting to show that there is a large constituency that cares about this issue. It isn’t easy to get City Council to put their energy into fixing citizen concerns, and it only seems to work when a large and vocal group comes together to advocate for change.
This meeting will be the first of a few. We’ll announce the other meeting(s) as soon as we work out more details. We hope to get the City Council to realize that there is strong support for building more trails that are open to bikes. We also want them to understand that concerns about safety, trail damage, and other issues have been successfully resolved in dozens of towns across the US. There are so many examples of success that it will be hard for people to ignore the facts.
Our long term goal would be to see the entire Ridgeline trail system have access to MTB use. We also hope to ensure that all future trail expansions will have a MTB component unless unique circumstances prevent the possibility.
Stay tuned for a Facebook group forming within hours, called MTB Eugene. This group will become the main advocacy group for mountain bike issues in and adjacent to Eugene. Become a fan of MTB Eugene, and RSVP to attend the Council meeting on the Facebook page. Also, send invites to your friends and family.
Finally, we’d love to hear any ideas or suggestions that you may have about how to help this cause. Anyone interested in getting involved can contact me, and I’ll add you to the planning group.
Thanks, mAtt, Al, A-dog, Eric, Tyler and Steve