I hope everyone has been able to get out and enjoy the (weirdly) warm weather recently. Although the riding has been very pleasant, it’s a bit unnerving that we have weather this warm in February.
The week ahead is somewhat slow, but we have a great community meeting coming up Monday (today, if you are receiving this by email.) In the fall, we invited our members and friends to brainstorm about what they would like to see as event, talks, rides, activities, and information in the future. This Monday’s topic came out of that meeting. See below for more details.
Our Community Meeting at 6:00 pm at the Central Library will be on the topic of “Know Your Rights: Biking and the Law” with Clayton Griessmeyer, Bicycle Injury Lawyer. If you have questions about what to do if you have a crash, or important aspects about biking on paths or roads, this will be an event you don’t want to miss.
Also Monday, Fitchburg Bikes will meet at the Fitchburg Senior Center, 5510 Lacy Rd at 7:00 pm.
Transportation Commission will meet virtually at 5:00 pm. On the agenda are a number of projects scheduled for both this year and planned for in the future. (See items on 5, 6, and 9 on the agenda. Under item 9, items marked TAP are pedestrian/bicycle improvements.)
Also on the agenda is an item about safety, crowding, and speed concerns on the paths. There is a good presentation from city staff that lays out the issues with both crowding and any conflicts. We’ve had a discussion about this recently on our Facebook Community, and it comes up every couple of years, including in a recent letter to the media. Basically, we rely on everyone to be polite and aware of other path users, but that’s often a big ask.
Ongoing opportunities to comment:
The UW has a new master plan for the Lakeshore Natural Area. There was quite a bit of publicity about a new visitors center to be built near the entrance to Picnic Point. This would involve some changes to both University Bay Dr and the parallel Lakeshore Path, but mostly just relocating them closer to the marsh.
Much of the master plan involves landscaping, prairie and woodland restoration, and changes to some pedestrian paths within the area near Picnic Point, but the Lakeshore Natural Area also includes the Lakeshore Path all the way down to the Limnology Building near Memorial Union. There isn’t much information in the current master plan about the path in this area, but we have the chance to weigh in on future needs for this critical connector.
The intrepid may be able to navigate the path in all conditions, but winter makes the path quite treacherous, with rutted ice, repeated freezing and thawing, and most of the path completely dark during our short days. Thaws in the spring just mean huge puddles — with ice still present underneath — mud, sand, more ruts, and all users trying to navigate the dry areas, so moving side to side on the path to find dry ground.
If you would like to see changes to the path in the future (lighting, surface, width, improved maintenance, stabilizing areas near the path, etc.) you can comment by contacting the UW via the contact information here.
Dane County is accepting comments until March 15 about a proposed bridge across the Wisconsin River near Sauk City and a trail to Walking Iron County Park near Mazomanie. Information – including slides and a recording from a January public meeting – and a link to comment can be found here.
As always, you can find an overview of all bike events on our Community Bike Calendar. Email us at email@example.com 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.