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Re: News from VT Bike/Ped Coalition - Oct. 2003


TONY REDINGTON <[log in to unmask]>


TONY REDINGTON <[log in to unmask]>


Sat, 18 Oct 2003 08:49:07 -0400





text/plain (455 lines)

One of the elements lost in the enhancements discussion with the VAOT is the
possible loss of the original Snelling/Dean commitments of $11.5 million to
bikepaths 1991-1993.  The VAOT has stated that it is making sure the
"enhancement" category of funding mandated by the feds is fulfilled. What isn't said
is that the original commitments of $11.5 million viewed and interpreted as outside
the enhancements pot may well have been dropped in an sure enough, the $11.5
million disappears.

Has anyone looked into this?  A lot of effort and the commitment of Gov. Dean was
put into this area.  Has it been lost?

On 16 Oct 2003 at 11:29, VT Bicycle/Pedestrian Coalition wrote:

Date sent:              Thu, 16 Oct 2003 11:29:32 -0400
Send reply to:          VT Bicycle/Pedestrian Coalition
<[log in to unmask]>
From:                   VT Bicycle/Pedestrian Coalition
<[log in to unmask]>
Subject:                [VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L] News from VT Bike/Ped Coalition
- Oct. 2003
To:                     [log in to unmask]

  News from the Vermont Bicycle & Pedestrian Coalition - Oct. 2003
The Vermont Bicycle & Pedestrian Coalition emphasizes bicycling &
walking safety, education, and access, to make Vermont "walkable and
bicycleable" for residents and visitors alike.  We also promote
bicycling and walking for transportation, health, recreation, and
fun to enhance our communities, environment, and economy.
Feel free to share this email with a like-minded friend!  To ask to
be added to or removed from our email list, which averages about a
message a month, please email [log in to unmask]  -  Thank you!

Dear members and friends,

I'm not sure that I'm ready for frost, fall, early evening darkness, and the
end of the warm-weather bicycling season -- but it's about that time.  I
have to confess that it's been a while since the last VT Bicycle &
Pedestrian Coalition e-newsletter.  Over the summer, I've gotten so busy
*doing* things that I haven't taken the time making sure everyone knows
about it!

With an eye toward staying in touch more often, I'll be trying to put these
newletters out at the beginning of each month - if you have news to share,
send it to me by the first of each month!


Bicycles Banned from Fairlee-Orford Bridge?

No more!  Upon inquiry from the VT Bike/Ped Coalition and the NH Bicycle
Coalition, NH DOT took down the signs that had the "NO BICYCLES" symbol.
NH-DOT didn't intend to ban bicycles from riding on the bridge roadway, just
to have bicycles walk if on the sidewalk.
  We still have some advocacy work to do, because the remaining "Walk
Bicycle On Sidewalk" sign is still confusing to drivers & bicyclists alike.
Our preferred solution?  Paint the walking instructions on the sidewalk
itself, where its only visible to those bicyclists (such as children) who
are on the sidewalk already.  Use those sign posts for "Share the Road"
signs instead!

Enhancements at Federal Level:  Amazing Bi-Partisan Support

As you may have heard, a Congressional committee this summer zeroed out Fed
FY 04 funding for the popular Transportation Enhancements Program which goes
for bicycle paths, sidewalks, and streetscaping.  But thanks to a
groundswell of grassroots support, Congress learned just how popular this
program is.  Lead by Rep. Petri (R-WI), the full House restored the program
by a vote of 327-90!  VT Rep. Bernie Sanders voted in support of the
restored funding.  Thank you, Bernie!
  This is good news for VT, as well.  Although the VT Legislature has
already appropriated funds for FY 04, a cut at the federal level might have
reduced our FY 05 spending.

VT Enhancements Program rolling again

Speaking of Enhancements, the VT Enhancements Program is rolling again.
Those applications that were on hold under the Moratorium have just been
considered by the selection committee, and awards will soon be announced.
The *tentative* FY 05 program schedule is:
   April:     VTrans will announce FY 05 Enhancements Program.
   June:      Letters of Intent due from potential sponsors.
   July:      Mandatory pre-application workshops.
   Aug.:      FY 05 applications due.

Vermont Bicycle Laws Revisions?

In light of several recent crashes, some of our members have suggested some
revisions to our bicycle laws - including a 3' rule for passing bicyclists.
This law, which is on the books in Wisconsin and other states, can be used
in instances where drivers may be playing "chicken" or harassing bicyclists.
We'd also like to make it legal for us to signal right turns with our right
arm.  We also want to make it a top priority this year to rescind the law
that requires bicyclists to ride on adjacent paths - for more on this, see
our website Advocacy section --

Do you have other ideas?  Willing to help make them happen?  Join our
Government Relations Committee -- contact Dale Critchlow
<[log in to unmask]> or 864-5404.


Clear Channel radio encouraged harassing bicyclists on the road

"Shock jocks" on the Clear Channel conglomerate of radio stations in three
states (NC, TX, OH) have broadcast shows encouraging listeners to harass
bicyclists, including encouraging motorists to throw things and run
bicyclists off the road.  To the best of our knowledge, this has NOT
happened in VT.  ** Please, if you hear of any similar incidents in VT,
please pass the details onto Becka at the VT Bike/Ped Coalition immediately!
**  We do encourage you to add your voice to the national protest campaign
being orchestrated through the League of American Bicyclists.
If any of this dangerous and potentially life-threatening nonsense starts in
VT, you better believe that the VT Bike/Ped Coalition will take action.

Pilot training for police officers

In collaboration with University of Vermont police officer Andrew Apgar, the
VT Bike/Ped Coalition hosted a pilot training program for police officers
covering the basics of bicycle laws and law enforcement.  With safety as the
prime focus, the two-hour class concentrated on bicyclist and motorist
violations that are likely to cause crashes:  bicyclists riding against
traffic, not stopping at stop signals, not using lights at night, turning
motorists not yielding to bicyclists, and motorist speeding.  Thanks to UVM
and Officer Apgar for helping with this pilot program; we look forward to
taking a similar training statewide as resources allow.

For those of you in the Burlington area:  Watch out!  Officer Apgar may be
ticketing bicyclists without headlights, a $25 fine.  Fortunately, you can
pick up a simple battery-powered headlight for less than that at your local
bike shop.  Other violations could get pricy:  Yes, for running a red light
on your bicycle the fine is the same as a motor vehicle:  $194.  Shocking.

Got Lights?

State law does require that you have a white front headlight when riding at
dusk or after dark!  Don't get caught out without one!  A rear red blinkie
is also a smart idea, but not necessary under the law.  Want to get the full
scoop on bicycle lights?  Pick up a copy of _Vermont Sports Today_ October
issue at your local bike shop or fitness center -- and check out our "Human
Powered" column on this illuminating subject.

Those of us on foot could use a little illumination, too - don't forget that
you're practically invisible to cars when you're walking in your dark winter
coat.  A white hat, a little reflective striping on your shoes...

Add YOUR voice on Sharing the Road!

Join our Share the Road committee -- working to foster safe and courteous
coexistence of bicyclists, walkers, and automobiles on VT roadways.  2003
work included bumperstickers, talking points for radio/TV, three radio
appearances (2 on "talk radio"), and a public access TV panel discussion.

Future work of the committee:
 * produce and air radio ads/PSAs
 * seek to strengthen the Share the Road message in drivers &
   commercial drivers manuals
 * work to get Share the Road education in Driver's Ed courses
 * encourage bicyclists etiquette
 * other projects as relevant to committee mission!

The committee will meet in a central Vermont location in late Fall of 2003
to develop a plan for the coming year and then meet by email or in person
when necessary to implement that plan.  To get involved - contact Bunky
Bernstein <[log in to unmask]> 425-4200.


Bicycle safety fair - organizers trained

In collaboration with Vermont SAFE KIDS, we hosted 2 trainings for 41 people
interested in putting on bicycle safety fairs in their local communities.  A
Vermont-specific recommendation on the national Guide to Bicycle Rodeos is
available, and 8 "prop kits" will be located in locations around the state
for volunteers to use at the local level.  For more information, contact
Becka - [log in to unmask] or 861-3300.

Education Committee to consider in-school program

The primary issue before our education committee this fall will be
developing a curriculum for teaching basic bicycling in Vermont schools, in
a 45 min-1 hr presentation format.  If you're a teacher or if you have years
of experience in doing this in your local community, we'd welcome your input
into this process.  We'll be looking at curricula from other states and
adapting to Vermont, and fitting with the Vermont Frameworks for Education.
A meeting will be held in November; to get into the loop for the scheduling,
contact Becka <[log in to unmask]> 861-3300 or Committee chair Bob
Atchinson <[log in to unmask]>.


Our numbers have tripled this year!

Thanks to a wildly successful membership campaign, we now stand several
hundred strong, with connections to two or three thousand constituents
through our supporting organizations!

Help us continue to grow!

The membership & event tabling committee is compiling a list of bicycle and
walking related events to have an information table.  We coordinate and
distribute materials and talk to people at the events. This is a great way
to promote bicycling and walking and tell people about the organization.  We
have a great little display, bicycling & trail maps from around the state,
and safety information.  Most committee work is via email, with about one
meeting per year.  If you're interested in compiling the list of "must go
to" events for the Coalition - and helping to represent the Coalition (yes,
we'll train you), contact Kathy Davidow <[log in to unmask]> 439-5397.

Even if you're not one for this committee, you can help by passing along
membership information to a friend, family member, or riding buddy!

Tim Cowles Bike- and Walkability Challenge

Superstar member Tim Cowles issued a challenge to the VT Bike/Ped Coalition
board of directors this summer:  raise $2000 from bike shops, individuals,
and businesses - and he'll match it.  The board stepped up to the plate and
recruited members and bikeshops alike.  Thanks, Tim for your support and

Cycle & Re-Cycle Calendar

This internationally-published calendar features bicycle images from around
the world -- and our photo of "ice biking" on Lake Champlain last winter
made the cover!  Who can beat a gorgeous sunset over the Adirondacks and the
frozen lake?  See it online at:

We'll be offering this calendar as a special "thank you" to donors in our
year-end appeal - or you can buy one at these local bike shops:
  Old Spokes Home - Burlington - N. Winooski Ave
  Local Motion (non-profit) - Burlington - on the bike path
  Battenkill Sports - Manchester just off Rt. 7
  Specialized Sport - Brattleboro - Main St.


Rails-to-Trails' Keith Laughlin promotes Lamoille Valley Rail Trail

In early September, the president of the national Rails-to-Trails
Conservancy visited Vermont and spoke to an assembled group of approximately
30 officials, planners, and partners engaged on the Lamoille Valley Rail
Trail, the 96-mile proposed trail from Swanton to St. Johnsbury.  VAST will
hold the lease on the trail, with winter snowmobile use and summer
bike/horse/walk.   The meeting focused on the economic benefits of such
trails.  The corridor is currently awaiting federal approval to be converted
from rail to trail, and Vtrans is now close to filing the paperwork for this

Walk/Bike to School

About 15 schools, and 2000+ kids from around VT celebrated the 7th
International Walk to School Day on Oct. 8.  Schools from across the state
participated, from the 20 kids at Roxbury Village School to the 400+ kids at
Mary Hogan School in Middlebury.  Vermont SAFE KIDS and VTrans supported the
project with safety materials, reflective zipper pulls, and bike helmets

One of the goals of Walk to School Day is to serve as a catalyst in a
community that wants to become more pedestrian friendly.  This has been the
case in Arlington, where new sidewalks were built to the school and in
Burlingtonıs Old North End, where a number of streets leading to Lawrence
Barnes Elementary received traffic calming treatments to slow motor vehicle
traffic.  If your school is interested in participating in the future,
contact Jon Kaplan at VTrans <[log in to unmask]> 828-0059.

Green bike lanes - I-89 Exit 14

Have you recently been to Exit 14 on I-89, the interchange with Williston
Rd.  If so, you might be shocked to see new green bicycle lanes along the
recently completed bridge.   These should help to make this interchange
crossing easier to negotiate, and bicyclists will appreciate increased space
on the road.  The green color is designed to draw extra-special motorist
attention to the bike lanes.  You may know that some other areas have blue
bike lanes?  Why are ours green?  It's not just the Green Mountain State -
Vtrans is participating in a study to determine the effectiveness of the
lanes in preventing conflicts, and what color is best.

New Burlington-Montpelier Bus sports Bike Racks

The new commuter bus service from Burlington to Montpelier (and vice versa)
sports a bike rack for those of you seeking a multimodal commute.  Two runs
each direction morning and eve for $6 RT - check out the schedule at

Brattleboro Area Bike/Ped Committee

Moving ahead with planning for next year, including Bike/Ped awareness week,
Connecticut River bikeways efforts.  For more info and to get on the list
for invites to the monthly meetings, contact Kendall Gifford
<[log in to unmask]>.


You've been hearing about obesity?  That one in 50 Americans is 100+ lbs
overweight?  That one in three children in the U.S. is expected to develop
diabetes in their lifetime?  Walking and bicycling -- and the healthy eating
habits that often go hand-in-hand with a more active life style -- are all
part of the solution!

Sprawl linked to health concerns

A new national study on the Relationship between Urban Sprawl and Physical
Activity, Obesity, and Morbidity in the American Journal of Health Promotion
was released in August. It offers powerful indications that sprawling
development has a hand the countryıs obesity crisis. Together, they
demonstrate the urgent need to invest in making Americaıs neighborhoods
appealing and safe places to walk and bicycle.  Check out the details at:


Tues. Oct. 21 - Montpelier Transportation Visioning
  City Hall, 7 pm.  Participants will help brainstorm improvements to
Montpelier's Transportation system, after a presentation on current & future
challenges.  Public surveys & more meetings to follow.  For more information
on this whole process, and to get in the loop:  Montpelier Planning Dept -
<[log in to unmask]> or 223-9506.

Wed. Oct. 22 - Chittenden Co. 25 Yr Transportation Plan
 South Burlington High School, 550 Dorset Street, 6:30 p.m.  Open house and
public hearing for the 25 year plan, including bicycle & pedestrian plan.
This important plan will shape the future of transportation in Chittenden
Co. -- and includes a significant bike/ped component.  However, there's also
a lot of investment in roads?  Come weigh in. For a downloadable news
release, fact sheet, photo, and a link to the draft document, please follow
this link:

Oct. 24 - Burlington:  Safe Routes to School planning meeting
  A pilot program for Safe Routes to School (kids walking/bicycling to
school) in Chittenden County will be the topic of this planning meeting.
Anyone representing an organization that might want to be part of this
program is invited to attend and give input to a draft program scope.  For
more information and working documents, contact Jon Kaplan of VTrans -
<[log in to unmask]> 828-0059

Fri. Oct. 24 - Brattleboro:  Critical Mass Movie
  While this controversial bike ride is not necessarily something that VT
Bike/Ped endorses, it is an important part of bicycle advocacy history.  The
documentary movie "We're Not Blocking Traffic; We Are the Traffic" will be
showing at the Hooker Dunham on Main St. for an evening showing.

Sun. Oct. 26 - Plymouth:  Killington-Pico Cycling Club Annual Dinner
  Bear Creek Lodge, Dinner plus cash bar - RSVP to Shelley Lutz
<[log in to unmask] Or 775-4867 before 9 pm.

Wed. Oct. 29 - Montpelier: Downtown Traffic Model Presentation
  City Hall, 7 pm.  Part of Montpelier's traffic planning effort (see Oct.
21 above).  Public feedback will be important to make sure the model is
accurate before it Is used to test future scenarios.

Sat. Nov. 8 - S. Burlington - Green Mtn Bicycle Club Annual Meeting
  Windjammer, 6 pm.  Register in advance- must receive check by Nov. 3.
Contact outgoing GMBC president Ben Haydock <[log in to unmask]>
985-8232 (new phone # 578-5385 after Oct. 17).

Wed. Nov. 19 - Waitsfield:  Mad River Riders mtg
  Recently rejuvenated bicycle club has both mountain biking and road biking
discussions & plans afoot.  For more detail -  or Jed
Carini <[log in to unmask]>.

To be scheduled - VT Bike/Ped Committee meetings:
 * Government Relations
 * Education
 * Share the Road Campaign
 * Events/Membership Committee
 * Facilities committee
Contact Becka <[log in to unmask]> or 861-3300 - and we'll include you in
the scheduling!

And finally, a note from the Coalition:

We're seeking to move our office to Montpelier in the next few months.  If
anyone has tips on someone in Montpelier looking for a 30+ roommate (who has
a dog and needs lots of bicycle storage), please send along to Becka.  (I'd
also be quite open to buying a duplex; tips in this tight housing market are
always appreciated!)

Organizationally speaking, we will be looking for a small office space to
rent - perhaps a cubical or office shared with another organization.
Donated would be lovely, or inexpensive rent.  Ideas?

Enjoy the fall weather from two wheels or two feet!


Becka Roolf, Director     [log in to unmask]
Vermont Bicycle & Pedestrian Coalition
PO Box 4003 . Burlington VT . 05406
802 . 861.3300 office
802 . 324.0261 home/cell

To ask to be added to or removed from our announcements
email list, please email [log in to unmask]  -  Thank you!
Thanks to our VT-based Internet sponsors: Timberline
Interactive for website/email and SoverNet for dial-up.
The Vermont Bicycle & Pedestrian Coalition is a member-
supported organization.  Please join, and share the word!
For more info and membership forms:

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L: The Vermont Bicycle and Pedestrian Policy Discussion List
Subscription control:
For help: email [log in to unmask] with the word "help" in the message
body.Tony Redington
802-223-1744 (h)
[log in to unmask]
[log in to unmask] (office)

VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L: The Vermont Bicycle and Pedestrian Policy Discussion List
Subscription control:
For help: email [log in to unmask] with the word "help" in the message body.

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