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Newsletter Weekly Update

Happy Winter Bike Week!

Welcome to the Madison Bikes newsletter! It’s Winter Bike Week and we’re super excited to share some news and updates with you.

Winter Bike Week activities

On Tuesday morning from 7-9, Bike Fitchburg will be hosting a commuter station at the “Velo UnderRound” (where the Badger, Cap City, Southwest, Cannonball, and Military Ridge Paths intersect). Stop by to enjoy some hot coffee and bagels. There will also be minor mechanical adjustments and bike maps available. Come chat about what Bike Fitchburg is doing to help make a more fun and welcoming place to ride a bike, and how you can get involved!

Friday is International Winter Bike Day, and Madison Bikes and the City of Madison are hosting another commuter station on the Capital City Trail, just east of the Monona Terrace (near the bike elevator). From 7-9am we will have free coffee (courtesy of Cafe Domestique), donuts, and some one-of-a-kind MB Winter biking stickers!

An smiling individual with long hair, wearing a high-vis coat and a high-vis hat, celebrates their free Madison Bikes blue face buff with the sun rising on the frozen lake behind them. A sign reads "no motorized vehicles past this point".
A happy commuter at Winter Bike Day 2023 (Photo: Harald Kliems)

Finally, Friday afternoon from 4-6pm, we’ll be hanging out at Working Draft Beer. All are welcome to stop by, enjoy 10% off with your Bike Benefits sticker, and chat with us about why you love Winter biking. Working Draft has a large selection of tap beer and plenty of NA options! We look forward to capping off the celebration with you there.

Meetings: Passenger Rail and Pedestrian Safety

How exciting is it to imagine a passenger train station in Madison? On Tuesday from 6-7:30pm, the city will be hosting a public meeting on the Passenger Rail Station Study. The study aims to identify a location for Amtrak’s planned extension of the Hiawatha route. Tune in to hear about the study’s progress and where the station could be located.

Wednesday from 5-7pm, the city is hosting a virtual Community Conversation about pedestrian safety. The meeting, held by the Disability Rights and Services Program, is for learning and discussing how to reduce crashes and deaths and improve safety for anyone who walks, rolls, or rides for transportation.

Freewheel Bicycle Co. Update

Madison Freewheel Bicycle Co. is a local non-profit bike shop that focuses on education about biking for transportation. Their services include providing free and low-cost bicycles to individuals in need, bike building, low cost and DIY repair, and maintenance classes. While they had to leave their previous space at the Madison Bicycle Center in 2023, they are still going and exploring which direction to go in 2024. Along with looking for a new indoor shop space, they are planning fundraising, advocacy for better transportation, and events. To help them do those things, Freewheel is seeking new board members. If you are interested in helping the community through bicycle education and advocacy, you are encouraged to join the next meeting on Thursday, February 15th, 6-7pm on Zoom (More info) (Zoom meeting registration link).

Welcome to our new board members!

Speaking of board members, meet the newest recruits to the Madison Bikes crew!

Jacob Bortell, Katie Nash, Pratik Prajapati, Paul Lata, and Christina Lopez join the Madison Bikes Board of Directors. Please join us in welcoming them! We are delighted to have such a great group and we look forward to their contributions and effort to make Madison an even better place to ride a bike. To read more about the new (and existing) board members, check out our Board of Directors page.

That’s all for this newsletter. Enjoy the warmer riding weather and we hope to see you out there!

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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Newsletter Weekly Update

When Bike Advocacy Work Pays Off

Welcome to the Madison Bikes newsletter! It’s the time of year when we get the least amount of sunlight, so if you can, be sure to take some time for yourself during the day. A short walk or bike ride in the middle of the workday can be an effective energy booster. As I like to say, you’re only one bike ride away from a good mood! Anyway, here’s what you need to know about biking in Madison this week.

Community Meeting Recap

Last week, some Madison Bikes Community members met to brainstorm and plan community meetings for 2024. Our goal is to have a meeting each month in the form of a get together, ride, learning opportunity, etc. and last Thursday we asked you for input and help. We got a lot of great ideas for meetings with themes like Spring bike cleaning and maintenance, restaurant hopping bike rides, dogs on bikes, and more!

Community meetings typically occur on the last Monday of the month, but you can see the complete schedule on our calendar. Sometimes we may combine the community meeting with other events, like during Bike Week in June. Keep an eye on this newsletter for details on all upcoming events. We look forward to seeing you there.

New Wilson and Broom St. Cycletracks

Some hot new bicycle infrastructure just dropped along Wilson and Broom streets! Two cycletracks were built as part of the city’s reconstruction and replacement of utilities along those corridors. This is a big win and important step towards connecting the Cap City Trail near Machinery Row to the Capitol area. We want to extend a huge thank you and congratulations for those of you who advocated for this improvement back in 2019.

Check out this video from Jerry Schippa for a tour of the new facilities!

Broom and Wilson Street Cycletrack 2023 | Jerry Schippa on YouTube

That’s not all. Last week, the Transportation Commission presented preliminary plans for even more improvements in this area. The plans included extending the cycletrack Eastward to King St, along with other changes. The construction is expected to begin in May 2024 and take 6 months. You can find more plan details in the full presentation.

This is proof that showing up to meetings or even sending emails can make a big difference in the way our city’s transportation is designed. Once again, thank you to those who pushed for this and hooray for reclaiming more space for people.

Alder Slack Resigns

On Friday, Alder Kristen Slack announced her resignation from the Madison Common Council due to family health issues. The resignation will take effect January 10th and the Council is looking for applicants to backfill that role. If you’re wondering if you are eligible, the city has a page to check which district you live in. If you are a bicycling ally, live in District 19, and want to become an Alder, now is the time to apply! Applications are due by January 9th. You can find more details on how to apply in the link at the beginning of this paragraph. The newly appointed Alder will serve the remainder of the current term which goes until April, 2025.

Mineral Point “Road Diet” Meeting

Last week, we talked about how Mineral Point Rd is due for resurfacing in 2024 and the city is considering a “road diet,” meaning they want to reduce travel lanes, eliminate parking, and add bike lanes. The project spans from Midvale to the Speedway/Glenway intersection. If you want to learn more, we encourage you to read this post from the city website. The page contains a link to attend the virtual meeting at 5pm on Tuesday, December 19th. If you can’t attend but want to show support, you can email Alder Tishler at district11@cityofmadison.com.

That’s all for this newsletter. Have a wonderful week ahead!

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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Newsletter Weekly Update

The Street Project; Midvale Bike Lanes; Atwood Construction

Welcome to the Madison Bikes newsletter! We hope you’re keeping warm this week as you pedal your way into November.

Remember, your hands and feet will be the first to feel the cold so make sure to have good gloves that keep the water out. If you don’t have waterproof gear and you have to cycle in some nasty conditions, try this. Hack #1: Layer your normal gloves with kitchen or latex gloves. To keep your feet warm, doubling up on socks can help, but if your shoes are already snug, you’ll want to avoid it because it can reduce circulation. I’ve also found that wind still goes right through even with a second pair which is why I prefer hack #2: Wrap aluminum foil or cling-wrap around your toes over your socks. It will provide a wind-resistant layer and help keep the heat in on longer rides and it shouldn’t cause well-fitting shoes to feel too tight. Plastic shopping bags can also work in a pinch.

With those tips out of the way, here’s what you should know about bike advocacy in Madison this week.

The Street Project Film Screening

Monday night, Madison Bikes along with The Congress for the New Urbanism and the Wisconsin Student Planning Association will be hosting a screening of The Street Project, a film about humanity’s relationship to the streets. The film features real stories about traffic violence and the fight to make streets safer for bikers and pedestrians. Shot with a 500mm lens, typically used for filming wildlife, the film is intended to give a fascinating, ground-level perspective of transportation and movement and capture real-life human behavior.

You won’t want to miss this opportunity to gather with other members of the biking community and get your mind churning with ideas on how we can improve our streets here in Madison. We’ll kick things off with a happy hour at the Sett Pub at 5 PM, followed by the film screening at 6 at the Marquee Cinema, both located in the UW-Madison Union South. After the film, stick around for a panel discussion with the following members of the community at 7:

  • Alicia Bosscher, Organizer, Ride for Your Life
  • Baltazar De Anda Santana, Director, The Latino Academy of Workforce Development
  • Chris McCahill, President, The Congress for the New Urbanism – Wisconsin Chapter
  • Collin Mead, Wisconsin Bike Fed
  • Juliana Bennett, Madison Alder, Dist 2
  • Morgan Ramaker, Downtown Madison, Inc.

Midvale Blvd Bike Lane Meeting

Also on Monday at 6:30 PM, Traffic Engineering is hosting a virtual neighborhood meeting regarding Midvale Blvd Safe Streets improvements. A buffered bike lane has been proposed and would require removing some parking. The purpose of the meeting is to hear from residents, discuss impacts, and answer questions. If you bike on or near Midvale Blvd between University Ave and Mineral Point Rd, your support is needed! Check out the project page on the city’s website for more details and to register for the meeting.

Atwood Ave Bike Bridge is Here

The new bridge along the Atwood Ave path
The new bridge along the Atwood Ave path | Christo Alexander

The Atwood Ave bridge over the Starkweather Creek is up and ridable. The bridge caps off a series of improvements to the bike infrastructure along Atwood on the North side of Lake Monona. The new multi-use path goes from Lakeland Ave, past Olbrich, and down Atwood Ave and is a great way to navigate the Northern section of the “Monona Lake Loop.”

That’s all for this week. Have a safe and spooky Halloween, stay warm, and keep biking!

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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Newsletter Weekly Update

Bicycle Friendly University; Future Rides; Join the Board

The boardwalk bike path on Lake Waubesa
The Lower Yahara River Trail – A great place to ride a bike | Christo Alexander

Welcome to this week’s update! Here’s what you need to know this week about bike advocacy in the Madison area.

Campus area commuters needed

If you bike around the Madison campus, your help is needed to evaluate how bike friendly it is! UW-Madison has applied to renew its status as a Bicycle Friendly University and The League of American Bicyclists (LAB) is sending out the survey to students and any other users of the bike infra around campus. If that’s you, please take the survey here! The input received will help the LAB award their final decision and will anonymously be included in feedback to the university. Your feedback is appreciated. To learn more about what it means to be a Bicycle Friendly University, check out the LAB website. Note: the survey closes Tuesday, Oct 10th at 11:59pm PT.

September Community Ride

Not this week, but next Friday, September 29th, we will be co-hosting another community ride with Madison is for People! The ride will meet at 6pm at Law Park near the BCycle station, take the lake loop counterclockwise at a casual pace, and end at Garver Feed Mill for food and beverages. The days are getting shorter so remember to bring lights!

In addition to riding your bike and having a great time, it’s a good opportunity for anyone interesting in joining the Madison Bikes board (see below) to chat with current board members and get your questions answered. Check out the event on Facebook and let us know if you can make it. We’d love to see you there!

Ride For Your Life

rideforyourlife.org

Looking ahead to October 1st: The “Ride For Your Life”, a 5-6 mile advocacy ride will be taking place. The ride is in memory of Sarah Langenkamp, and any cyclist who has needlessly lost their life on the road. It’s long overdue that everyone stands up and demands safer places for biking and walking. The ride will meet at Brittingham park at 2pm, with a departure time of 2:30 and end at the Wisconsin State Capitol, to rally for congress to fund safer infrastructure. If you can make it, be sure to register on the website. The ride is free and open to all. Volunteers are also needed to help with crossings and other support. We hope you can participate. If you do, you’ll be helping make biking safer in Wisconsin and standing up for something you believe in, which is pretty cool.

We want you to join the board!

Yes, you! If you enjoy biking infrastructure, advocacy, volunteering for a good cause, or you just want to see fewer cars in your life, consider filling out an application. The application is not a commitment. It’s just to let us know you’re interested in getting involved.

We’re seeking members from all areas of the Madison community. We want your perspective and ideas on how to make Madison a more comfortable and safe place to get around!

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.