Once Around the Web: Bikelicious!

May is Bike Month! Time to dust off your bike, replace the batteries in your lights, go buy a fun new bike bell and join the National Bike Challenge. This free program runs May 1 to August 31 with the goal of uniting 50,000 people to bike 10 million miles. In addition to improving their health, saving money and helping the environment, the Challenge is a fun way for participants who live in the U.S. to have a chance to win some great prizes and awards at the end of the Challenge.

Did you know..? Small Investments in Bike/Ped Infrastructure Can Pay Off in a Big Way.

Back in 2007, the FHWA provided four communities with four years of funding to build sidewalks and bike paths. It wasn’t  much  money — $25 million each to Columbia, Missouri; Marin County, California; Minneapolis, Minnesota; and Sheboygan County, Wisconsin.

It was the nation’s first-ever experiment to gauge the impact of concentrated investment in biking and walking infrastructure in America and now the numbers are in.

A few of the findings:

  • An estimated 16 million miles were walked or bicycled that would have otherwise been driven in 2010, and an estimated 32 million driving miles were averted between 2007 and 2010
  • The four pilot areas saw an average increase of 49 percent in the number of bicyclists and a 22 percent increase in the number of pedestrians between 2007 and 2010.
  • In each community, a greater percentage of pedestrian and bicycling trips included transit in 2010 than in 2007.
  • Despite increases in biking and walking, fatal bike/ped crashes held steady or decreased in all of the communities.

U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood described the release of NTPP data as an “eye-opening report on the value of investing in nonmotorized transportation.”

It’s not a surprise to SDOT, we’re working hard to improve walking and biking here in Seattle. Which reminds me – if you haven’t yet – go take our Bicycle Master Plan Survey! It’s quick and it’s important.

And now, in Stupid Human News! Previously, people were more likely to believe in climate change when they were in a warm room as opposed to a cool one.  And now they can bike to work from the comfort of their Cadillac Escalade ESV. That’s right, it’s a limo with a built-in stationary bike. So you can exercise in luxurious comfort while sitting in traffic.

 

Lastly, let’s laugh about something that doesn’t make us want to throw ourselves off the planet shall we? Funny or Die and EveryBody Walk brings us a welcome West Wing reunion with this video “Walk & Talk”. And if anybody knows how to Walk the “Walk & Talk” Walk, it’s these guys.

(Monday – Friday SDOT sends out a compilation of local and national transportation news links. If you’d like to subscribe (or unsubscribe) to the list, just send an email to allie.gerlach@seattle.gov and I’ll take care of it for you. )