The recently-formed mountain bike advocacy group MTB Eugene is returning to the Eugene City Council on Monday, May 24th to lobby for the re-opening of the Ribbon Trail to cyclists. MTB Eugene, which was formed in response to the city’s decision to ban cyclists from the Ribbon Trail, has a goal to eventually open the entire Ridgeline trail system to bicyclists.
The closing of the Ribbon Trail has proven to be the most popular subject on WeBikeEugene by far; this seems to indicate that mountain bikers in Eugene are a silent and suppressed majority. Indeed, Eugene (like Portland) has ridiculously little mountain bike trail access in relationship to its size and large bicycling populace. Much of this is due to a perceived conflict between mountain bikers and hikers, and the belief that mountain bikes damage trails more than hikers. Both of these beliefs have been shown in study after study after study after study to be false. Some studies have indicated that the real issue is the fear that hikers have of conflict with mountain bikers – a fear that for the most part exists only in hikers not exposed to mountain bikers.
MTB Eugene’s testimony before city council on Monday will address a few of these issues, as well as other specific reasons that The Ribbon Trail should be re-opened to bikes.
Go here for previous coverage of the closing of the Ribbon Trail and here for coverage and video of MTB Eugene’s previous testimony before City Council.
Take the jump to read MTB Eugene’s full press release for the upcoming May 24th City Council Meeting.