This past week
August in Madison, when everyone is out on bikes, and city meetings slow down. We did have one great event this past weekend. Adonia Lugo came to Madison to talk about her work on race and bicycling. We helped to organize a nice community ride n Saturday. She then did a reading from her book and took questions. If you missed it, but are interested in this subject, you can either buy the book or get in line to check it out from the library.
The week ahead
The Transportation Planning and Policy Board will meet at 5:00 pm in Room 215 of the Municipal Building. On the agenda is:
- Update on the Wilson St project
- Nelson Neighborhood Development Plan (with some new pedestrian-bike connections)
- Oscar Meyer Special Area Plan (there are no documents available, but additional bike-ped connections are needed in this area.)
- Projects that will be submitted for Transportation Alternatives Program funding (federal bike-ped funding). These include path connections, over/underpasses, and paths along roadways. Not all of these will necessarily be funded, but this is what the city is requesting.
The Madison Bikes Communications Committee will meet at Memorial Union Terrace at 6:00 pm. If you are interested in attending or helping with communications, drop us a line at Media@madisonbikes.org/. We always love to have new volunteers, and helping on one of the committees is a great way to see what we are all about and help out the biking community.
The Madison Area Transportation Planning Board (MPO) meets at 6:30 pm at the Water Utility Building at 119 E. Olin Ave. There isn’t anything specifically about bicycling on the agenda, but they will be discussing a couple of items that could affect biking. One item is plans for Hwy M between Hwys Q and 113 – across the top of Lake Mendota. They will also be discussing the Transportation Improvement Plan – the five-year plan for transportation for the region. Documents on these items are not available as of this writing, but they should be uploaded here before the meeting.
Send us your events
Reminder that we have a Community Bike Calendar on our website. If you would like to add something, send it to us. We can’t guarantee it will be featured in the weekly update, but at least it will be available for people to see.
What are we talking about on online?
The photo at the top of the post was prompted by a discussion on a different Facebook group about bad bicycle parking. I have an entire file on my computer labeled “Bike Parking Fail.” What made me think of this is that there was a long discussion on our Facebook group about signs outside Monroe St businesses asking bicyclists to please walk their bikes (on the sidewalk.) When Monroe St was being reconstructed, we pointed out the need for safe and comfortable bike facilities ON the street where destinations are located (as opposed to the SW Path, which does not connect directly to Monroe)– one way to keep bicyclists from using the sidewalk. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen, so people coming from and going to businesses sometimes bike on the sidewalk.
There was also a very long discussion about passing pedestrians on shared paths. I hear a lot of grumbling from pedestrians about being passed too closely or by bicyclists going too fast. As our paths get more popular and more people use them for transportation, we all have to remember that the paths are shared, not just for bicyclists. And maybe we need more space so there will be fewer conflicts. After all, that’s what happens when highways get crowded — they get expanded.
One of our regular FB contributors had a nasty experience with the driver van belonging to a local business while riding on the Mifflin bike boulevard. When he stopped there to complain, it turns out the driver was also the manager and co-owner. This business is in a very bike/ped friendly neighborhood and frequently has full bike racks out front. If we can’t rely on these folks to be our allies and treat us well, what’s the world coming to?