Hey folks! I haven’t posted in awhile, but luckily Shane has kept the site alive. I have a few weeks before grad school forces me back into hiding, so I’m going to try to cover as much as possible before then. A lot has been going on!
Firstly, remember how the Fern Ridge Bike Path is falling into the River? I first posted about it almost exactly a year ago (when I had time to run this site) with an article that explained how incredibly dangerous the area is and why City fixed only the less dangerous part of the Fern Ridge Path the following (last) summer. Eugene Transportation Planner Dave Roth said that fixing the section between Chambers and Garfield was a much more expensive project because it would require a re-routing of the path: “The path is too close to the stream, so what happens is the stream kind of erodes that side, and every year it’s sinking. That path is sinking and falling off the edge.”
The good news is that Eugene used a rapid readiness grant last year to do all the background research and planning to fix that area, so it’s now a “shovel ready” project that is just waiting for the money. This is good, since the path is now literally falling into the river, and the cracks threaten to swallow not only tires but entire joggers. But wait, there’s more!
The big winds caused some trail damage this past week and though most hikers and bikers think the Forest Service clears and maintains all the trails we all love to hike and ride it’s actually volunteer groups, such as the Disciples of Dirt Mountain Bike Club (DOD), who contribute many thousands of hours to trail work each year. The various government agencies don’t have the manpower or budgets to do it all on their own anymore. After this weeks big winds DOD is gearing up to get some of those local trails cleared. The following information comes from Paul Timm, the Trailwork Coordinator for the DOD:
Each spring the DOD, and our sister club in Oakridge the Greater Oakridge Area Trail Stewards, or GOATS, organize multiple trailwork parties to tackle cutting out all the trees that blow down, repair the trail where erosion may have taken a toll, and cut back brush that encroaches. Many of our members are certified by the National Forest Service to operate chainsaws, and many of us have had field training on the right way to build and maintain trail from both the NFS and IMBA, the International Mountain Bika Association. IMBA is the recognized leader in trail design for safety and sustainability. See www.imba.com for more info.
Last Sunday’s wind storm caused some serious damage that everyone is aware of. Here it is 4 days after the storm as I am writing this, and some folks are still out of power. What do you think happened in the woods? Lots of trees fell and are blocking trails. To that end, we are organizing an immediate effort to reopen the trails in our winter playground near Lorane. If you think you might like to come out to lend a hand we could use you.
we are organizing an immediate effort to reopen the trails in our winter playground near Lorane. If you think you might like to come out to lend a hand we could use you.
At this week’s National Bike Summit, being held in Washington, DC, awards were announced for the newest “Bicycle Friendly America” category, Universities (joining Communities, States and Businesses). The University of Oregon was one of 32 applicants for the recognition and was one of 9 communities awarded the Silver level award by the League of American Bicyclists. A total of 20 schools were given the award with two receiving Gold (University of California’s Davis & Santa Barbara) and one Platinum (Stanford University).
Highlighting Stanford University the League said they stood out as Platinum for their breadth of programs, including: a great cycling network, education programs like the Bike Safety Dorm Challenge, and bicycling incentive programs that resulted in an extraordinary number of people biking for transportation and recreation. Currently, 41 percent of people at Stanford commute by bike, compared to 17 percent of people at UO. Continue reading “University of Oregon Receives Silver Bicycle Friendly University Award”
This just in from the coordinator of the Project Homeless Connect bike area. I volunteered here last year and it’s a great project! Please consider signing up to help out. You don’t have to be a pro mechanic, many of these bikes need major help but just getting them to the “safe” level of working brakes and parts not falling off is big step towards safer mobility for a lot of people! Here’s the information:
I am the logistics coordinator and the bicycle repair area leader for Project Homeless Connect. The event is happening next Thursday at the Lane Event Center. Each year, many social service agencies, with the help of hundreds of volunteers provide a multitude of services for about 1500 homeless and at-risk persons. I still need 7-10 bicycle mechanics to help repair bicycle for homeless and at risk persons at the event. You don’t need to be a professional or have training. We are only doing minor tune-ups and changing flat and worn tires and tubes. If you have some basic tools and a repair stand, I can really use your help! I am needing mechanics for both morning and afternoon shifts, but am especially desperate for mechanics to fill the 11:30am -3:30pm shift. We typically repair over 100 bikes each year at the event. If you can spare a few hours next Thursday, please sign-up to help. You can sign up by using this link:
Scroll down (to #4) to find the bicycle mechanic position and sign up! There are other positions that still need volunteers if you prefer not to work on bikes. I hope to see some of you at the event. If you wish to learn more about the event, feel free to contact me at email@example.com.
A University of Oregon student has released a great graphic depiction of America’s bicycle mode share, government spending on bike/ped infrastructure, and bicycle-related fatalities. Kory Northrop created the map, graphs, and text for an advanced cartography class and it gives a nice visual representation of various bike numbers. Besides being relevant to Eugene because it was created by a UO student, it also helps to show that the more we invest in bicycle infrastructure, the more likely it is that we will actually get our ridership up as well as our fatalities down– an important thing to consider as we move forward with the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan. Here are the graphs and map followed by the text and sources. Thanks to Kory for sharing.
Bicycle Commuting Trends in the United States
After multiple decades of auto-centric funding and policies, the American transportation system and built environment has become difficult to navigate by methods other than the automobile. This reality is highlighted by the fact that half of the trips in the United States could be traveled in 20 minutes or less via bicycle and a quarter of the trips could be walked in 20 minutes or less. However, the majority of these trips are made in automobiles.