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Weekly Update

Olbrich Park Path at TC, Bike Week

Credit: Cyclists of Madison

This Week

Monday

This Monday there are two area bike organizations having meetings. First up is the Madison Bikes Community Meeting at 6:00 PM. You can join the meeting by following the directions in the Google Calendar entry.

The next meeting on Monday is the Bike Fitchburg monthly meeting. This meeting starts at 6:30 PM and takes place at the Fitchburg Public Library.

Wednesday

On Wednesday, Madison’s Transportation Commission is meeting at 5 PM. On the agenda is a fairly important item related to Madison’s bike network. Specifically, the TC is considering a new alternate to the previously adopted route through Olbrich Park as part of the Atwood Avenue Project. This path not only helps improve commuting from the near east side to Monona, but it is also a critical piece of Madison’s extremely popular Lake Loop recreational route.

The public is encouraged to give feedback on this proposed change, so I encourage you to look through this and provide feedback on the changes proposed. The next public meeting after Wednesday’s TC meeting will be the Sept. 22 Board of Park Commissioners.

Olbrich Park Path routing Option 1. This was the routing approved by the Common Council in 2018.

Option 1, shown above, was the routing in the documents approved by the Common Council on July 24, 2018. This option was arrived at after nearly a year of public input. However, this option did see opposition from some people who did not want the future multi-use path to use the existing multi-use path in the park.

Option 2. The major problem with this alternate is that Olbrich Park’s sledding hill runs out directly across this path.

Some time after the passage of the Atwood Avenue plan, Option 2 was shown as part of the 30% design plans. This option took the proposed path off of the existing path, but also created a conflict point at the bottom of the very popular Olbrich Park sledding hill. For that reason, this option fails to meet the city’s goals of providing safe, equitable, year-round bicycle access. This is why we’re now seeing Option 3.

Option 3: A new option that routes the proposed path around the run out area for the sledding hill.

Option 3 routes the Option 2 path around a significant curve to the southwest to move the path’s route away from the runout on the sledding hill while maintaining still keeping the new path off the existing path along the lake shore.

Bike Week

Bike Week is now three weeks away. Be sure to check out Madison Bike’s Bike Week page to learn about what exciting events are in store! Last Friday, Madison Bikes Board Member Robbie Webber had an interview on WORT’s Friday 8 O’Clock Buzz about Bike Week. You can listen to it here.

As always, you can find an overview of all bike events on our Community Bike Calendar. Email us at info@madisonbikes.org to add your events. And if you value our newsletter and other work, consider donating to Madison Bikes. For construction updates, check out the city’s Bike Madison page.

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Bike News E-Mail Weekly Update

Storm Cleanup, August Riding, and Bike Week Events

Two cyclists on a tandem along the Monona Terrace bike path
Credit: Cyclists of Madison

It wouldn’t be August in Wisconsin without some severe weather interspersed among our beautiful late summer, sun-filled days. As discussed in our Facebook Group, sometimes it makes sense to bring your bow saw or even a battery-powered chainsaw (don’t forget your chaps!) on a ride if you can. Use sound judgement and keep it slow going through the debris fields; if you’re unlucky, even a small twig can take out a rear derailleur!

This Week

On Monday at 5pm, the Transportation Policy and Planning Board is meeting virtually. Nothing particularly earth-shattering going on, but some Odana Area Plan updates and a few transit updates might be worth checking out.

Also on Monday at 6pm sharp @ Orton Park, maybe you want to check out the Monday 40 “party pace” ride? This week they’re heading towards Kegonsa State Park and it looks like a lot of fun! This group has really taken off and there’s room for riders of all ability levels. Sounds like as the days get shorter, so too will the distances, so this might be last the last forty-miler of the season. In a couple of weeks, they’re hosting an 18-mile Lake Waubesa ride for Bike Week, so keep an eye out for that.

Events are starting to roll in for Madison Bike Week 2021, happening September 12-18! We’ll be having our end-of-week party on the 18th and we’re looking for a few volunteers for that. If you’re interested in being on that list, send us an email. And of course, if you’d like to host an event, you’ve still got a couple of weeks to register and get yourself on the schedule.

Finally, if you work in Dane County, teleworked at any time during the pandemic, and have 8-10 minutes to donate to the cause, Greater Madison MPO, Sustain Dane, and Dane County Office of Energy and Climate Change are partnering to conduct a survey: Greater Madison Telework Survey 2021.

As always, you can find an overview of all bike events on our Community Bike Calendar. Email us at info@madisonbikes.org to add your events. And if you value our newsletter and other work, consider donating to Madison Bikes. For construction updates, check out the city’s Bike Madison page.

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Weekly Update

August Fun, 20 is Plenty, TC, and Bike Week

My family enjoying the mountain biking trails near Duluth, Minnesota. Our family is new to mountain biking this year and I was pleased to discover there are many great mountain bike trails in Wisconsin and other neighboring states. Plus most of the easy (green circle) trails are accessible to kids with standard non-mountain bikes. Just make sure to run very low tire pressure on the small kids bikes to get traction.

Madison Bike Week

Madison Bike Week (and Wisconsin Bike Week) is just a little over a month away! September 12-18 is coming soon. We have received the first event submissions and our calendar just went online. If you have a business or are part of a community group that would like to host an event during the week, you can find more information and sign up here. New this year: We have a limited number of mini-grants to help community groups host events in parts of town that haven’t had Bike Week events in the past or that serve/are run by underrepresented populations.

20 is Plenty Pilot Starts Monday

The city of Madison is starting the 20 is Plenty pilot initiative on Monday this week. This is part of the broader Vision Zero goal to reduce and eventually eliminate all traffic related deaths in the city. The first phase of the project will be implemented in the Tenney-Lapham and Theresa-Hammersley neighborhoods. I recommend you try to visit one of these neighborhoods so you can try it out and provide feedback in a survey expected later in the year.

Transportation Commission – Wednesday

The Transportation Commission is meeting at 5pm on Wednesday. The agenda includes quarterly updates on metro, traffic engineering, traffic safety and parking. Plus an updated design of the W Wilson, S Hamilton and S. Henry intersection to improve pedestrian safety and accommodate the planned cycle track on W. Wilson st. Register to attend or give comments at https://www.cityofmadison.com/MeetingRegistration

Let’s Talk Streets Survey

The city is seeking feedback on how our future transportation infrastructure (streets, sidewalks, metro, etc..) should be designed to serve all users (not just cars). This “Lets Talk Streets” initiative is part of the larger Vision Zero goal and it is very important that you respond. I urge you to complete this survey ASAP, if you haven’t done so.

As always, you can find an overview of all bike events on our Community Bike Calendar. Email us at info@madisonbikes.org to add your events. And if you value our newsletter and other work, consider donating to Madison Bikes. For construction updates, check out the city’s Bike Madison page.

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Weekly Update

Take back the streets

Rally for Safe Streets sentiments in chalk

Probably the biggest event this past week was the rally that Madison Bikes held Saturday morning in partnership with three other organizations. The Take Back the Streets: Safe Streets Save Lives gathered people in front of the Madison Municipal Building to demand improvements to E. Washington Ave (and other large, fast roads in our city) to address the conditions that led to recent deaths. All three major local TV news services and the Wisconsin State Journal covered the rally the same day. Tone Madison will be running an article in the future. 

Although we wanted to have an event immediately to react to the deaths on E Washington in the last month, this is not the end. This is just the beginning of a coalition for safer streets. We will keep you up to date on future events, planning, and actions. If you are interested in volunteering for this coalition, drop Marybeth McGuiness — Madison Bikes new board Vice President — a note. 

Building a coalition
Grant at the mic

The week ahead

Monday

Transportation Planning and Policy Board meets Monday at 5:00 pm. On the agenda is the final report of the Traffic Calming Subcommittee and adoption of the new Safe Streets Madison program. This new program will replace the Neighborhood Traffic Management Program that required residents to collect signatures and petition for traffic islands, speed humps, or other traffic calming infrastructure. The new program’s scoresheet relies more heavily on whether a proposed project will improve the pedestrian network, all-ages-and-abilities bicycle network, or address a high-crash and serious-injury location. You can read the full report of the subcommittee here. If you want to watch the meeting, see what else is on the agenda, or comment on any item, follow this link

Wednesday

The Greater Madison Metropolitan Planning Organization will meet at 6:30 pm. They will be hearing reports on a variety of regional transportation issues, including the following:

  • Regional Travel Forecast Model Project
  • Review of Connect Greater Madison Regional Transportation Plan 2050 — Update public survey results
  • Initial scoring of projects to receive federal STP-Urban funding

Documents related to these topics are not linked from the MPO agenda (unlike other city committees), but you can poke around on their website if you want to delve into the info, The MPO does transportation planning and finances projects in the Greater Madison metropolitan area, so many major projects go through the MPO to get the funding go ahead. You can also watch the meeting or comment on agenda items at the.  agenda link.

Save the date, and think about events

Although Madison Bike Week 2021 isn’t until September 12-18, it isn’t too soon to think about events. So if you are a member of a business or organization that wants to put on an event or offer a deal or discount during Bike Week, or even if you want to host an event yourself or with a small group, you can find the form to fill out on the Madison Bike Week page.

We are excited to have the opportunity to have a wide variety of activities and events throughout the city. So if you have an idea, we can work with you to flesh it out.

As always, you can find an overview of all bike events on our Community Bike Calendar. Email us at info@madisonbikes.org to add your events. And if you value our newsletter and other work, consider donating to Madison Bikes. For construction updates, check out the city’s Bike Madison page.