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[personal profile] squirrelitude
I expressed some concern to my Alderman (Mark Niedergang) about the state of the northbound bike lane on Beacon St in Somerville, and he forwarded my question to some Official Clue in the city who work on bicycling matters. Here's my email:

[...] I've found the results of the Beacon St. repaving pretty disappointing with respect to cycling.

Before the repaving, the northbound bike lane was in really bad shape, but so was the paint, so there was little problem with biking in the main travel lane. Now, the paint clearly marks the bike lane, but it's full of rough pavement, bollards, and driveway ramps—totally unsuitable for bicycling in.

In my experience, drivers feel more entitled to an unshared travel lane when there's a bike lane next to it, so this seems like a worse situation than before. I haven't been harassed yet, but it's just a matter of time, and I'm concerned that other cyclists will feel compelled to ride in the unsafe, narrow, obstructed bike lane.

Do you know if there are plans to repair the bike lane very soon? If not, is that something you can work towards?

And here's the very informative response I got from Mike Tremblay, Senior Transportation Planner:

We agree that the northbound bike lane on Beacon Street is currently suboptimal. The project has been slowed due to outside circumstances, including utility work and emergency gas repairs.

The repaving that occurred on the Washington to Oxford section of Beacon Street (the section to which I believe you are referring) was done in order to repair the trenches created by the gas work. However, this is not the final pavement condition on the street. The driveway aprons that jut into the street are temporary because the street is a couple of inches lower than it will be when the project is done. The plastic bollards, while not ideal, are necessary to flag those driveways so that plow drivers can avoid them in the snow; hitting them could cause damage to the plow and injure the driver. Those posts will be removed (and the ones that are in good condition will be stored or redeployed elsewhere) once we believe we are in the clear in terms of snow, likely sometime in April. We understand that this condition is far from optimal, and sympathize; all of us bike on this stretch at least occasionally, and Ken, who lives on the street and is the chair of the Bicycle Advisory Committee, has expressed similar concerns already.

The street will be paved, for good, sometime in the late spring/early summer. At that time, the northbound bike lane will be raised slightly to create some vertical separation for bikes, help prevent illegal parking, and make bikes more visible. The markings on the road will be striped with longer-lasting, higher-visibility thermoplastic, rather than the temporary paint that fades relatively quickly.

I hope this addresses your concerns. Please let me know if you have any other questions.

(The Ken he refers to is Ken Carlson, Chair of the Somerville Bicycle Committee.)

I probably would have known more about the plans if I'd been living in Somerville when the work was starting, but I was in Allston at the time and didn't pay much attention. And if you were wondering as I was, now you know too. :-)
[personal profile] vlayne
A 1960s "chopper" bike

This marvel of welding currently resides in my sweetie's mother's basement, which we are cleaning out. Given what we know about who was involved, we figure it had to have been made in the 1960s. It's very dusty and rusty, and may not be operational.

It's free to anyone who can come get it in Danvers, MA. We don't have any vehicle large enough to transport it.

If you want it, please contact me here via comment or private message.

(I've already reached out to SCUL twice and haven't heard back. So now it's open season.)
[personal profile] ron_newman
Starting on June 11 and continuing into early September, the Community Path west of Davis Square, from Buena Vista Road to Cameron Ave, will be closed for drainage and retaining wall construction. This project should alleviate the chronic flooding problems on that part of the path.

I can't tell from that page whether it will still be possible to cross the path at Thorndike Street during the construction.

The northbound bicycle detour shown on the map is sub-optimal. A better detour is: northbound on Cameron Ave, right on Tannery Brook Row, straight onto Howard Street, left onto Thorndike St to Holland Street.
[personal profile] kent37
The city is finally going to address the flooding issues on the Community Path west of Davis!
secretlyironic: smug bird icon (Default)
[personal profile] secretlyironic
Last night a friend of mine was biking near Union Square and was attacked by a group of guys in a car, blowing an airhorn, yelling "kumbaya, bitch" and throwing or firing eggs at her from some sort of slingshot. She called 911 and filed a police report. Apparently a number of other people have also experienced this. Be on the lookout and try to get a license plate number if you can.
[identity profile] mem-winterhill.livejournal.com

Get the next LandLine ride on your calendar! LandLine is MAPC's vision to connect our greenways and trails into a seamless network. The plan has been developed in coordination with the LandLine Coalition, a group of 40 volunteers representing a number of local agencies and advocacy groups.

What: Mystic River- the final frontier of waterfront path and park development in Metro Boston! This ride will include beautiful spaces along the Mystic and Malden Rivers as well as projects in the works to expand and connect the network*. Bruce Kulik of the Medford Bicycle Advisory Committee will be co-hosting and Jay Monty, Transportation Planner with the City of Everett will be joining to share the latest in Everett.

When: Wednesday, July 13th, 5:30 pm (end by 8 pm)

[more details over there]
[identity profile] guthmeister.livejournal.com
Devastated to learn that the young cyclist hit in Inman Square yesterday died of her injuries. Heard on NPR that she worked at Diesel. The Cafe's FB page says they closed early today to mourn their friend. So incredibly sad.
[identity profile] obie119.livejournal.com
Come join me up the road/path in Arlington on June 1st for an evening of films from Spain to Germany to Bolivia and beyond! You don't have to be a cyclist to enjoy these tales of two-wheeled adventure. Ciclismo Classico proudly presents this one-of-a-kind film festival, the ONLY film festival in the USA to celebrate travel by bicycle.

See what happens when a bored businessman skips work and just keeps pedaling.
Watch the protagonists of our films as they encounter everything from llamas to cranky border patrols to mountaintop thunderstorms.
Be inspired by two families who bring their kids along for the ride - and make sure the Easter Bunny doesn’t forget their campsite!
Get an inside look at Cuba’s vast bike culture, including a man who built an 18-ft tall bike!

In addition to the 8 fantastic and inspiring films on tap, the Ciclismo Classico Bike Travel Film Festival begins with a social hour (6:00 - 7:00 PM) and the famous Cookie Showcase, an all-cookie buffet featuring the best bakeries of Arlington and beyond! Every attendee will be entered into a drawing to win a trip to Italy with Ciclismo Classico! You can also win a beautiful bike jersey as part of our Great Jersey Giveaway!

Special guests for the evening are Jim Sayer, Executive Director of Adventure Cycling Association (when you hear him speak, you’ll be ready to quit your job and go biking!) and Charles Scott, the “family adventure guy” and filmmaker of our 2016 Grand Jury Prizewinning film.

It's a great time, and proceeds benefit Adventure Cycling Association and MassBike. Tickets available now ($15 in advance; $20 at the door) at http://regenttheatre.com/details/the_7th_annual_ciclismo_classico_bike_travel_film_festival

Additional dates have also been added further afield:

Thursday, June 2nd, Newburyport, MA
Friday, June 17th, Danbury, CT

More info at http://www.ciclismoclassico.com/filmfest
[personal profile] ron_newman
The city of Somerville has over 100 abandoned bikes, in a variety of conditions, that are being offered for sale.
When/where: Saturday, May 14, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the former Powderhouse Community School, 1060 Broadway

(Source: an e-mail newsletter I just received)
[personal profile] ron_newman
The Somerville Bicycle Committee and Somerville Arts Council present the sixth annual Illumination Bicycle Tour this Saturday, December 19. Meet at 5:50 pm in front of Somerville High School for a wintry ride among warmly lit homes. The ride will be about 5-6 miles long, with stops at many of the Illuminations Trolley Tour highlights, and should end by 7:30.

I'm not even partially in charge of the event anymore, but this appears to be the route map, similar to what we did last year. The route has provisions for a longer or shorter ride depending on weather.

Please dress warmly and festoon your bike with lights, the more festive the better.

Here's the ride's Facebook event.

Poster graphic behind cut )
[identity profile] obie119.livejournal.com
On Sunday, December 13th, join the 19th Annual Ciclismo Classico Jingle Ride. This leisurely and festive singing bike parade goes from Arlington to Boston and back. The 22-mile bicycle ride rolls through Harvard Square, the Esplanade, Boston Common, and Newbury Street – we stop and sing carols at local landmarks, and just parade along showing some creative holiday spirit.

There will be free hot mulled cider and freshly-brewed coffee and pastries thanks to our starting-point hosts at the Kickstand Café. We’ll also enjoy hot cocoa and cookies at Harvard Square, courtesy of the Harvard Square Business Association!

It’s a parade, not a race – so if you have a bicycle, we’d love your holiday spirit along for the ride!

Join the Jingle Ride!
Date: Sunday December 13th, 2015 (ride will be cancelled if there is extreme weather)
Time: registration opens at 10:15 AM, ride leaves promptly at 11 AM
Distance: 22-mile leisurely loop from Arlington to Boston and back
Starting point: Kickstand Café, 594 Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington Center, MA
Cost: Suggested donation of $25 (children under 18 are free if accompanied by an adult). All proceeds go to Horizons for Homeless Children.
RSVP is required. Please RSVP at http://jingleride2015.eventbrite.com or contact Francesca at 781-646-3377.

PS: this year we aren't on the same day as the Jingle Bell Run, so you can do both if you'd like :)
[identity profile] keithn.livejournal.com
In an interesting development that is sure to put the mayor in an awkward position, Wynn wants to build a footbridge over the Mystic river to connect the Wynn casino site to Assembly Square. I know the possibility of a bridge has had support from people who don't even plan on visiting the casino, but according to our mayor: “A footbridge would benefit Steve Wynn and Steve Wynn only."

Read more at http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/11/12/wynn-resorts-footbridge-span-mystic/2i7jPr6hCYwSjTCsWwoxpI/story.html
[identity profile] sarahcasman.livejournal.com

Learn to be a Winter Cyclist or Improve your Winter Biking Skillz!

What: Winter Biking Clinic!
Where: Sprout (339R Summer St. Somerville)
When: This Thursday 11/12 at 7:00-9:30PM

Join Femmechanics’ own winter riding veterans for an evening of tips, tricks, commiseration and advice! We’re hosting an off-bike clinic, so no need to have a bike or experience riding – femme, trans and women (FTW) cyclists and bike-curious folks of all abilities are welcome!

We’ll cover bike setup, clothing and cargo, safety and behavior, and winter bike maintenance to get you through the season. Did last winter’s weather crush your riding soul and leave you looking for new tricks to try? Have you never ridden beyond the beach, but are thinking about giving colder weather biking a try? Entirely new to biking and not sure if you should wait until next Spring to start? Join us!

We’ll leave plenty of time at the end of the clinic for open networking and casual Q&A with our most enthusiastic winter riders – bring us your questions and share your concerns! Your bike doesn’t have to hit Craigslist just because the snow is coming, and the MBTA is not your only option.

See you out there!
[identity profile] aurewl.livejournal.com
There are a few easy-to-miss posts near the Cedar St. part of the bike path advertising a lighting opinion survey. I followed the link and found this:

"Recently the City of Somerville installed new lighting on the Somerville Community Path between Willow and Cedar. SolarOne Solutions partnered with Somerville to win the Innovate Mass Grant Award that largely funded this project. Solarone is using the installation as a "living lab" to develop networked lighting solutions that can effectively manage solar lighting in adverse environments and track the available power stored in each system. An important part of the project is hearing from you.  Please take a moment to share your  experience."

The new lighting they are talking about is the LEDs which so far I've noticed between Willow Ave and Lowell St., and also over by the park near Woodbine. Here is the link to fill out the survey if you have opinions on the new lighting: www.solarone.net/lights

I am also generally curious what other people think of the lights. I find them to be way too bright.
[personal profile] ron_newman
Yes, we've been rained out three times (May 31, June 28, Sept. 13) but we're going to keep trying!

Join the Somerville Historic Preservation Commission and the Somerville Bicycle Committee for a fun bike ride exploring Somerville's new "green" initiatives with the theme "Food, Flowers, and Farming: All Flourishing Anew in Somerville". The ride begins at 1 pm this Sunday, October 4, at Somerville City Hall.

The ride is geared for all ages and riding levels, and it will be escorted by the Somerville Police. There will be a few rest stops as well.

A $3.00 Donation is appreciated, and refreshments will be available at the conclusion of the ride at Aeronaut Brewery!

We're cautiously optimistic about this Sunday's forecast, but if there is any doubt, please check the home page of SomervilleMA.gov for possible cancellation notices. Should we get washed out once again, our final rain date will be Saturday, October 17.

For those of you who like Facebook events, here's ours. And here's a map of our route.

Poster behind cut )
[identity profile] mindstalk.livejournal.com
So, in May 2013, I spawned what turned out to be a very long discussion of bike behavior, starting with my rant about a lack of lights. I didn't give numbers in the main post, but at some point I'd counted 1 in 6 night bikers having lights.

Tonight, it was more like 60%. Not counting myself, 38 with to 30 without on my way to Kendall, 9 to 6 back later, along Beacon/Hampshire. A few more if you count bikes with only tail lights, a few less not counting really dim front lights. Still at least 50%.

Has there been a huge change and uptake in the past two years, or was my original sample particularly poor?

(Dishonorable mention: the *car* cruising down Beacon with no lights.)
[identity profile] pakoo.livejournal.com
This is a little different, but---
I came home a couple weeks ago and saw a blue bike in my driveway.  It was late at night and I assumed that it belonged to a friend of the family, so I wheeled it into my backyard so it didn't get stolen.  I then asked all my family members if their friends had left a bike during a visit but no one had any idea whose it was......I am now wondering if it was stolen and taken on a "joy ride"--
If you are missing a blue bike and can identify the make, etc, please let me know.
[personal profile] ron_newman
Because of potential thunderstorms this afternoon, the Somerville Bicycle Committee and Somerville Historic Preservation Commission have once again had to cancel today's Historic Bike Tour. (It was also cancelled by rain on May 31 and June 28.) They hope to try once again some time in October.

Meanwhile, please go enjoy the Greek Food Festival, Saints Cosmas & Damian Festival, Cambridge Caribbean Carnival, or one of the other local events listed here.
[personal profile] ron_newman

Thursday 9/10

Friday 9/11

Saturday 9/12

Sunday 9/13

(Whew! Did I leave anything out?)


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