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2011 Walk and Bike Month Boulder Colorado Walk and Bike Month Boulder Colorado
Past Campaigns
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County Comprehensive Plan
Advocacy committee members attended meetings to give feedback on the County's comprehensive plan. The plan includes calls for sustainability and funding alternative transportation.
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Boulder County Mountain Community Cyclist-Motorist Working Group
Committee members participated in this group, aimed at increasing understanding between cyclists and motorists on canyon roads west of Boulder. The group identified improvements including signed waiting areas for cyclists, shoulders on Lee Hill Drive, and regular sweeping in the spring to remove sand from winter snow control.
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Bike Corrals Installed Downtown
Every year Community Cycles organizes a Walk & Bike Month event called Park(ing) Spaces Day. Park(ing) Space Day parks raise awareness of the trade-off between space for cars vs. space for humans. If we shift our resources toward improved mass transit and bicycling, how could we reclaim parking spaces? One answer is more bike parking, which is badly needed in downtown Boulder. By transforming one car space into a bike corral, eight bikes can be housed and sidewalks have been freed up for walking. Community Cycles worked with the merchant, the downtown parking district and GO Boulder to make this parking corral happen. A parking corral was also added outside of Trident bookshop on west Pearl, where similar bike parking problems exist. These corrals are pilot projects. If successful, we should see more.
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LOBO (Longmont to Boulder) Trail
Boulder County hosted a trail opening event July 14 to celebrate the opening of the new LOBO trail. A group led by Bicycle Longmont and a group led by Community Cycles and GO Boulder met in Niwot for a “Golden Spoke” celebration. About 60 folks turned out for the event. Boulder County also awarded Certificates of Appreciation to Community Cycles’s own Sue Prant and Bike Longmont’s Buzz Feldman.
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Transportation and Climate Change

This document was prepared to educate City Council candidates on issues surrounding transportation and climate change.  The questions are questions that posed to candidates at a public fourm on Sept 30, 2013.

1) Do you support increased density in Boulder as a means of reducing per-capita CO2 emissions? If so, what land-use rules would you change?

The three D’s of sustainable urban design are density, diversity, design.  While all three are necessary, density is surely the most polarizing, with proponents of low-density development raising doubt about the connection between density and CO2.  But the mechanisms by which appropriate density of activity within a city reduce per-capita CO2 emissions are manifold, including:

  • Density provides the critical mass of users to allow efficient transit to be viable.

  • When combined with a diversity of land use, density reduces average trip length and, correspondingly, transport-related CO2.

  • When combined with good design, density makes walking more interesting, increasing pedestrian mode share.  (People who think nothing of walking four blocks on the Pearl Street Mall will get in their cars to go the same distance on 28th St., because the low density makes walking so unappealing there.)

  • Density leads to increased parking prices, which reduces driving.

  • Density usually entails multi-story buildings and shared building envelopes, which reduce both embodied and operational energy.

  • Denser development encourages smaller residential or commercial unit size, again reducing embodied and operational energy.

In practice, the results are clear.  Denser cities like New York, Boston, and San Francisco have much lower per-capita emissions than sprawling places like Atlanta, Houston, and Phoenix. Graphs showing the inverse relationship between density and transport-related emissions are particularly striking.

The general rule of thumb for the density necessary to support transit is 10-15 dwelling units/acre.  In Boulder today, the minimum lot size in the RL-1 zone district -- encompassing most of our single-family housing -- is 7000 square feet, which yields 6 dwelling units/acre, even excluding land necessary for streets.

It’s important to note that density can be achieved without excessive building height.  Boulder’s Holiday neighborhood and the Prospect New Town development in Longmont are denser than most single-family areas of Boulder, while maintaining modest building heights and eminently walkable design.  Attaining a more sustainable level of density also need not entail significant changes to the character of existing residential neighborhoods, if it’s achieved by modifying zoning codes to allow smaller lot sizes, ADUs, row houses, or higher occupancy limits.


2) CU will be developing its East Campus in the coming years, leading to more trips in the 30th and Colorado area.  In order to encourage bicycle use as a low-carbon alternative to cars, do you support a road diet on south 30th Street to widen bike lanes and sidewalks and reduce automobile travel lanes to one in each direction and a center turn lane?

A road diet entails reducing the number of general-purpose lanes, and/or their width, in order to calm traffic and create a more human-friendly street.  What we propose for the residential section of 30th St. between Baseline and Arapahoe is typical of road diets applied successfully in many other cities: at the minimum, re-striping from four general-purpose lanes plus narrow, inadequate bike lanes to two general-purpose lanes, a center turn lane, and adequate bike lanes.  This improvement could be implemented at the cost of little more than some paint.  A more ambitious proposal would add physically separated cycle tracks and create wider, more comfortable sidewalks with tree-filled landscaping to buffer cyclists and pedestrians from traffic.

Benefits of this road diet will include:

  • A much more appealing environment for pedestrians and bicyclists, increasing the usage of these low-carbon transportation modes, particularly for students travelling between Williams Village and the University’s Main and East Campuses.

  • Reduction in accidents, and an even greater reduction in accident severity due to reduced motor vehicle speed.

  • Reduction in vehicle noise, benefitting pedestrians and street-side residents.

  • No or minimal reduction in throughput despite slower peak traffic speeds, because the center turn lane results in smoother, more continuous traffic flow.

  • Tree planting further shields noise, calms the street, and sequesters CO2.

The general engineering rule of thumb is that a road diet on a four-lane street is justified if motor vehicle counts are 20,000 vehicles per day or less.  30th Street qualifies by this criterion.  With the coming development of CU’s East Campus, bike and pedestrian traffic between there and Williams Village can be expected to increase markedly, begging for safer and more pleasant walking and riding facilities on 30th St.  It is in Boulder’s, and the planet’s, interest that students be encouraged to make this trip by foot or bike, rather than by car.

3) Parking provided free of charge encourages driving over other modes of transit.  What changes to automobile parking policy in Boulder do you support as a step towards meeting the city's climate goals?

Nationally, the transportation sector accounted for 28% of greenhouse gas emissions in 2011, making it the second-largest culprit in the US contribution to climate change, a little behind electricity production.  Boulder’s most recent greenhouse gas inventory showed transportation accounting for 22% of the city’s direct emissions, and most of that is due to private cars and trucks.  This is a very conservative estimate, as it doesn’t take into consideration the carbon cost of thousands of heated garages, brightly-lit car lots, the embodied energy in our wide streets, and other ancillary costs that are a direct result of our auto-dependent lifestyles and urban design.

If Boulder is to achieve the aspirational goal of 80% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2050, every sector is going to have to do its share.  Sharply cutting electricity-related emissions is a necessary, but by no means sufficient, step.  In order to continue to show leadership on climate change, no less than a revolution in our transportation system will be required.  And that does not mean just switching to electric cars: as a recent National Academies study showed, the life-cycle carbon cost of electric cars is about the same as for gasoline-powered cars -- and getting the electricity from renewable sources doesn’t help much.

So what’s called for is a fundamental shift from a city rooted in the car as a means of getting around, to one that’s based on walking, biking, and transit, with the car used as a special case rather than as a default.  And since the cost, availability, and convenience of parking is arguably the biggest factor in determining people’s choice of transportation mode, an aggressive climate policy necessarily means a rethinking of parking policy.  Currently our land use code builds in huge incentives for driving, by requiring most housing and businesses to provide parking -- which is usually provided “free”.  (Of course, it’s not free, but it’s built into the rent or the cost of goods and services, whether people drive or not.)  The city also provides thousands of acres of free parking on the publicly owned streets, not to mention in off-street lots.

The effect is a massive shift in cost from drivers to the general public, a socialization of parking that should make Tea Partiers shudder (but doesn’t seem to).  So ironically, one solution to the problem is less regulation, allowing the free market to set the amount of parking provided and making drivers pay the real cost of parking.  In any case, we won’t be able to make our climate goals if we continue to provide the cheap and abundant parking that we currently have.

4) Much of Boulder’s affordable housing is farther from the urban core, making it difficult for its residents to travel without cars.  Enabling car-free transportation would ease residents’ tight budgets as well as moving us toward our climate goals.  How would you make low-cost, low-carbon transportation, including biking, walking, and transit, safer and more accessible to low income families?

Boulder is a tale of two cities, with traditional, walkable neighborhoods on the west, near the downtown core, and post-war suburban sprawl further east and out.  Boulder is also much more sharply bifurcated by wealth than many cities, and by and large, the wealthy live in the walkable areas (because they can afford to) and the poorer residents live in sprawl: think of mobile home parks like San Lazaro, which is surrounded by industrial parks, or concentrations of poorer, often immigrant families living in the vicinity of north 28th Street.  The Depot Square development in Boulder Junction will soon bring another 71 units of affordable housing to the eastern, sprawling part of town.

As a result, the Boulderites who are less likely to be able to afford a car are more likely to live in parts of town designed around the car, with wide, high-traffic streets, large blocks, missing or inadequate sidewalks, and buildings typically surrounded by parking lots.  Assorted city planning documents, including the most recent update of the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan, have focused on the need to reorient the area to less car-centric design, but little has changed outside the Boulder Junction area.  Indeed, the Transportation Network Plans for Arapahoe and 28th St. that were drawn up a decade to guide the creation of a finer-grained transportation network along those corridors have been quietly shelved.

Moreover, a map of current Eco Pass neighborhoods shows that most areas with NECO Passes available are in the wealthier, west parts of town.  So again, lower-income residents who live further east are less likely to be able to use Eco Passes for affordable transit.

5) How would you resolve the conflict between the Transportation Master Plan's goal of increased non-automotive mode share and its requirements for levels of service for cars?  How should the TMP change to reflect Boulder’s climate goals?

The 1996 Transportation Master Plan identified four metrics for success: alternative mode trip share; total annual vehicle miles travelled; automotive level of service on arterial streets; and air quality.  While politically expedient, these goals are not fully compatible.  In particular, since congestion is one of the most effective influences on mode choice, it is challenging to keep congestion low and simultaneously increase the mode shares for walking, biking, and transit.  This is what the city has attempted to do over the past decade or so with its carrot-only transportation policies, with significant funding for bike and transit infrastructure in particular, and educational and encouragement campaigns including funding for Bike to Work Day and Eco Passes.

The results have been positive but by no means spectacular.  The city’s measurements indicate automotive LOS is more or less unchanged over the past decade or so.  Meanwhile, according to the American Community Survey (probably the most reliable measure of transportation mode use), the commute mode share for transit in Boulder increased from 8.3% in 2000 to 10.6% in 2008; biking increased from 6.9% to 9.9%; and walking actually decreased, from 9.0% to 8.3%.  City staff attempt to put the best possible spin on these numbers, focusing more on comparison against other communities than on progress over time.  But some lofty early goals will clearly not be met.  For instance, the 1996 TMP identified a goal of reducing SOV mode share for all trips to 25% by 2020.  Though the city gave itself an extension to 2025, the number is currently about 37%, and there’s little chance of reaching even the relaxed goal without a significant policy redirection.  More directly related to climate change, total VMT has indeed stayed roughly constant and has even fallen recently, tracking national trends.  But Boulder’s per capita VMT remains well above that of cities such as Colorado Springs and Greeley -- not places known for their enlightened attitudes towards climate change.

Besides congestion, the other main deterrents to driving are the cost and availability of parking.  But here again the city’s policies are in conflict, as the land use code prescribes minimum parking requirements for all development outside the managed parking districts, at levels that are generally appropriate to suburban-style urban form.  A comprehensive review of parking policy is planned for next year, but parking is an extremely contentious subject, and it will take strong political leadership to make substantive changes.

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Boulder Bike Parking 2013

City of Boulder to Offer Subsidized Bike Racks to Local Businesses

The City of Boulder is working in partnership with Community Cycles to launch a pilot program that will
offer low cost bike racks and installation for qualifying businesses.

According to city bike/ped planner, Marni Ratzel "Much of the bike parking at shopping centers and in
front of local businesses is not adequate because it was installed before current standards that consider
a higher demand for bike parking and more secure racks. This pilot program seeks to address the lack of
quality bike parking for bicyclists and businesses."

Businesses can apply for subsidized racks and installation by completing an online form to request racks.
Business can purchase up to five inverted U type racks at a discounted price of $50 per rack. Quantities
are limited and will be first come, first served, based on need. Included in the rack fee is site inspection
by a Community Cycles representative to help determine the best location for rack placement.
Businesses are required to maintain bike racks, including snow and ice removal around the racks.

For businesses seeking assistance with installing racks, Community cycles will complete installation at
a discounted rate of $50 per rack.  Businesses that do not choose to have Community Cycles complete the installation must install the racks within 6 weeks after taking the delivery of the racks.

"This is an excellent opportunity to get quality bike parking at some locations in Boulder that are
seriously lacking," says Community Cycles Advocacy Director Sue Prant. "We are really excited to be part
of this project that is addressing the needs of people who ride bikes in Boulder."

For more information, contact Sue Prant at sue@communitycycles.org or Marni Ratzel at
Ratzelm@bouldercolorado.gov

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Biketopia

Biketopia:  Dramatically increasing Boulder's bike mode share

On Dec 6th, the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Salon in collaboration with Bike Belong and Community Cylcles presented Biketopia:  Dramatically increasing Boulder's bike mode share.  Martha Roskowski outlined a plan for pushing Boulder beyond it status as a leading bike community in North America, and towards taking a place amontg the world's best cities for cycling!

Community Cycles advocacy committee will be working with the city on modifications to the Transportation Master Plan.  Many of the proposed goals will be similar to the Biketopia presentation.  Near term, CC will be asking for citizen involvement in urging the city to approve the Transportation Maintenance Fee that will fund bicycle infrastructure improvements.

Here's a short Summary:  The Blue Line

Here are the slides:  Biketopia:  Dramatically Increasing Bouder's bike mode share

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Green Bike Lanes in Boulder

Cyclists and motorists traveling north along Folsom Street will notice something new at the intersections of Canyon Boulevard and Pearl Street—green bike turning lanes. As part of a pilot project, the City of Boulder’s Transportation Division has installed the new pavement markings to promote community awareness and increase safety for both cyclists and motorists.

The city is testing the green bike turning lanes’ effectiveness with reducing “right hook” collisions, which involve a motorist making a right turn and accidentally colliding with a cyclist traveling in the same direction in the adjacent bike lane.

Citywide, approximately 14 percent of all motor vehicle collisions involving cyclists have been attributed to right hook collisions.  

The new pavement markings on Folsom Street are the first phase of the pilot project, with additional green bike turning lanes planned along Colorado Avenue and Table Mesa Drive this fall. Evaluations to test the effectiveness of the markings will include field observations and an online community survey to gather input from cyclists and motorists.

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Community Cycles Wins Major Victory for Bicyclists at Deadly US36 and Violet Intersection

As reported last month, Community Cycles has been appealing to CDOT to improve conditions for cyclists at the US36 and Violet intersection following the second fatal bike accident in 3 years. The entire intersection will undergo a major redesign in 2015, so we are looking for quick mitigations to improve safety now. Community Cycles made a number of suggestions to CDOT that we felt could be quickly implemented at low cost and would greatly improve safety. We are pleased to report that some progress has been made.

CDOT is currently doing a signal warrant study on the intersection. A consultant has been hired to evaluate the intersection and produce a bike lanes striping plan. It is expected bike lanes should be completed by mid October. CDOT will also be doing a study on speed limits on this stretch of road. Thanks to hard work from the Community Cycles advocacy committee, Boulder Transportation Department staff and CDOT, hopefully this intersection will become much safer for bicyclists.

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Community Cycles Working with CDOT to Improve Safety at Deadly US36 Intersection

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Community Cycles met with CDOT officials for a sight view of US36 and Violet intersection, which has been the site of two bicycle fatalities in the last three years. The current design of the intersection, which is under CDOT jurisdiction, facilitates motorists being able to make a left turn at a high rate of speed onto Violet because of the wide turn radius. The wide shoulder on the road also disappears at the intersection, which forces cyclists into the right turn lane or a high speed through lane. According to crash reports Community Cycles requested, there is remarkable similarity in both accidents.

According to discussions with CDOT, the intersection is set for construction in 2015. That project will re-design the intersection so that Violet meets US36 at a 90-degree angle, getting rid of the wide turn radius for motorists making a left onto Violet.

In the meantime, Community Cycles requested a meeting with CDOT officials at the crash site to look for immediate mitigations that can be made to make this intersection safer while we wait for the 2015 re-design project. City of Boulder Transportation Department and Boulder County Representatives also attended this sight view.

Community Cycles asked for the speed limits be lowered and a bike lane installed through the intersection. We requested the bike lane be painted to make it more obvious. Studies in Portland, OR have shown cyclists feel 50% safer in colored bike lanes and there has been a 20% increase in motorists yielding to cyclists in colored lanes.  A Demark study showed colored bike lanes reduced bike-car collisions by 38% and reduced fatalities and serious injuries by 71%.

While it took a fair amount of convincing of CDOT to agree to look into these non traditional engineering solutions, the city of Boulder engineers were extremely helpful and supportive of the mitigations we were requesting and agreed to help CDOT through the application of these roadway improvements.

Community Cycles will continue to work diligently, making sure these safety improvements to US36 and Violet happen quickly. Please stay tuned in case we need your support in the form of letters or calls to push the project along. The best way to stay on top of this issue is to join our Advocacy Alerts Google Group. It is less than one e-mail a month, but is the best way to get information about letters that need to be written in support of project like this or important community meetings. To sign up go to
http://groups.google.com/forum/?hl=en&fromgroups#!forum/community-cycles-advocacy.

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Fourmile Canyon Creek
Boulder is examining options for bicycle and pedestrian connections east of Crest View Elementary School. Of the three options on the table, two involve adding 5-foot-wide sidewalks to residential streets, while the third is a paved or gravel path along the Fourmile Canyon Creek drainage. All cost roughly the same amount.  Community Cycles strongly supports including a paved multi-use path along the creek with an underpass at 19th Street. This plan was approved by the public and city council in the original NOBO plan. The path can be plowed, allowing safe access all year. This option also represents an important segment of the planned Fourmile Creek Path.
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Survey of Local Bike Businesses

When a segment of the business community has economic clout, it's often easier to get the attention of decision makers. In Boulder, we know that bicycle-related businesses contribute substantially to the economy. To quantify this, Community Cycles is conducting a survey of local bicycle-related businesses (58 of them!) to determine their local economic impact. This information will be used to push for pro-bicycling policies in Boulder.

The survey was featured in the Camera.

Here's our flyer suitable for sharing with those curious about the impact of cycling on Boulder's economy.

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Boulder County Bike Then Bus Program
Hey BOLT riders! Tired of lugging your bike on and off the bus every day? The Bus Then Bike program offers long-term bicycle parking in a card-key accessed shelter on 28th and Iris in Boulder and downtown Longmont. The shelters will provide a secure place for bikes and bike accessories to be stored overnight. Community Cycles is partnering with the county on this program and along with Bike Longmont will provide maintenance to the bike shelters.
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Boulder Bike Station

Thanks to efforts of the Community Cycles Advocacy Committee, the city of Boulder  has applied for a BikeStation as part of a $4 million application to the Federal Transit Administration to remodel the 14th Street and Walnut Transit Center. The new station would include more areas for passenger pick-up, more spaces for bus layovers, a more attractive and safer waiting area for passengers, and 250 secure, protected bike parking spaces. The city will find out later this year if funds are awarded to this project.
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Pearl Parkway, Boulder Slough and Junction Place

Representing cyclists during redevelopment of Pearl ParkwayNew development is coming to the Boulder Junction area. Pearl Parkway will become a multi-way boulevard, with two center travel lanes and a side street with parking. The multi-way boulevard is a new idea in Boulder. Community Cycles worked with Planning and Transportation to support a design option for the multi-way boulevard that had parking on the street side rather than curb-side. Meanwhile, developers of 3100 Pearl will construct a multi-use path parallel to Pearl that will eventually meet the Foothills path. However, this multi-use path would stop short of connecting with the underpass at the Boulder Slough. Completion of this missing link was not planned for some time. We worked with the city to move the missing link of the trail up in the project queue and recommended for funding.

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CC Works to Save Boulder Bike and Bus Projects
CC's Advocacy Director recently testified before the board of the Denver Regional Council of Governments in support of six bicycle and bus projects in Boulder and Boulder county that may be cut from the regional Transportation Improvement Plan. The Boulder projects scored well in the regional cooperation process, but when Denver did not receive funding for its highway project, officials went around the process and suggested cutting the Boulder projects. We will keep you posted.
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Table Mesa Bike Shelter Now Open!
The Table Mesa Bus then Bike shelter is now open!
Sign up here to get your free key card:
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Bicycle Advocacy in Boulder

Latest News:

Election 2013


Moving Boulder Forward: Vote YES on 2B, C & D


The city of Boulder is experiencing significant gaps in transportation funding, even before the recent flood. Due to these gaps, funding for bike/ped projects decreases as the city uses all resources just to meet road maintenance needs. After many years of working hard on this issue, Community Cycles has been instrumental in getting City Council to put measures on the ballot that will provide the needed funding to support bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure as well as transit for the next 16 years.


To pass the transportation funding (as well as funding for Open Space and general funds for police, fire and human services) a coalition campaign has been form called Moving Boulder Forward: VOTE YES on 2B, C & D. This campaign is co-chaired by Community Cycles Advocacy Director Sue Prant, Open Space Board of Trustees chair Allyn Feinberg, and City Council member Suzy Ageton. Along with members of the Transportation Advisory Board, the Boulder Chamber and other concerned citizens, the Moving Boulder Forward committee is working hard to gain passage of 2B, C & D.


How can you help?
Please make a donation to help us get the word out. Visit the Moving Boulder Forward website to donate. http://movingboulderforward.org/

Volunteer. Email Sue Prant to volunteer on such tasks as leafleting. sue@communitycycles.org

Learn more. A Moving Boulder Forward committee member will happily come speak to your community group, HOA, etc. to explain all the issues and details of 2B, C & D. Contact sue@communitycycles.org for more info.


Vote yes! The most important thing you can do is to vote YES on 2B, C & D! Tell your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers. If you want more bike paths, sidewalk and bike lanes, and improvements for bicyclists and walkers on streets like 30th Street, then please vote YES! For more info, visit the Moving Boulder Forward website.


Joint City Council Candidate Forum: September 30


Community Cycles will co-host a City Council candidate forum with EcoCycle and the Sierra Club entitled “Cooling the Climate Candidate Forum: Tackling Smokestacks, Tailpipes and Trash Cans.” It be will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 30 at the Boulder Library Canyon Theater. Come learn about each candidate’s stand on transportation, recycling and climate change issues. We are excited to join with our friends at EcoCycle and Sierra Club to sponsor this community event.


Community Cycles has prepared an extensive background document for Council candidates with information on transportation, land use and related carbon foot print. It makes for interesting reading (https://www.communitycycles.org/bicycle-advocacy/current-campaigns/683-trans-climate-change.html).


City Council Candidate Questionnaire

Organized by Boulder’s online news and opinion source The Blue Line, 30 community organizations (including Community Cycles) submitted questions for City Council candidates. Results are in; be sure to read here (http://www.boulderblueline.org/election-2013/ ) and attend the forum on Sept. 30… and vote!

City of Boulder to Offer Subsidized Bike Racks to Local Businesses

Biketopia:  Dramatically increasing Boulder's bike mode share

Community Cycles Advocacy Committee releases 2012 state of the system report to City of Boulder.


The Community Cycles Advocacy Committee is the voice for cyclists in Boulder County, working with local, state and federal government, as well as businesses and neighborhoods, for better access to bike parking, transit, and trails.

We work with government agencies to represent cyclists in local and regional planning and to advocate for new construction that is bicycle friendly, and existing roads, schools, workplaces and shopping centers re-envisioned for cyclists’ safety. 

We report on the state of cycling in our area.  Our annual report includes feedback from our annual survey of local cyclists and brings attention to ways to improve cyclists’ safety and efficiency.  We have conducted bike lane surveys to help maintenance crews focus their efforts on the most critical issues.

We encourage businesses to be bike-friendly and to see the value of cyclists as a customer base.  We recognize and honor bike-friendly businesses and we have estimated the value of cycling to Boulder’s economy.

We volunteer in the community by attending meetings, riding lanes, writing letters, staffing events, and more.  Plus we have fun!  To join us, email ann@communitycycles.org for information on current projects and meeting times.

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Current Boulder Bike Advocacy Campaigns

Transportation and Climate Change

This document was prepared to educate City Council candidates on issues surrounding transportation and climate change.  The questions are questions that posed to candidates at a public fourm on Sept 30, 2013.

1) Do you support increased density in Boulder as a means of reducing per-capita CO2 emissions? If so, what land-use rules would you change?

The three D’s of sustainable urban design are density, diversity, design.  While all three are necessary, density is surely the most polarizing, with proponents of low-density development raising doubt about the connection between density and CO2.  But the mechanisms by which appropriate density of activity within a city reduce per-capita CO2 emissions are manifold, including:

  • Density provides the critical mass of users to allow efficient transit to be viable.

  • When combined with a diversity of land use, density reduces average trip length and, correspondingly, transport-related CO2.

  • When combined with good design, density makes walking more interesting, increasing pedestrian mode share.  (People who think nothing of walking four blocks on the Pearl Street Mall will get in their cars to go the same distance on 28th St., because the low density makes walking so unappealing there.)

  • Density leads to increased parking prices, which reduces driving.

  • Density usually entails multi-story…

Biketopia

Biketopia:  Dramatically increasing Boulder's bike mode share

On Dec 6th, the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Salon in collaboration with Bike Belong and Community Cylcles presented Biketopia:  Dramatically increasing Boulder's bike mode share.  Martha Roskowski outlined a plan for pushing Boulder beyond it status as a leading bike community in North America, and towards taking a place amontg the world's best cities for cycling!

Community Cycles advocacy committee will be working with the city on modifications to the Transportation Master Plan.  Many of the proposed goals will be similar to the Biketopia presentation.  Near term, CC will be asking for citizen involvement in urging the city to approve the Transportation Maintenance Fee that will fund bicycle infrastructure improvements.

Here's a short Summary:  The Blue Line

Here are the slides:  Biketopia:  Dramatically Increasing Bouder's bike mode share

Boulder Bike Parking 2013

City of Boulder to Offer Subsidized Bike Racks to Local Businesses

The City of Boulder is working in partnership with Community Cycles to launch a pilot program that will
offer low cost bike racks and installation for qualifying businesses.

According to city bike/ped planner, Marni Ratzel "Much of the bike parking at shopping centers and in
front of local businesses is not adequate because it was installed before current standards that consider
a higher demand for bike parking and more secure racks. This pilot program seeks to address the lack of
quality bike parking for bicyclists and businesses."

Businesses can apply for subsidized racks and installation by completing an online form to request racks.
Business can purchase up to five inverted U type racks at a discounted price of $50 per rack. Quantities
are limited and will be first come, first served, based on need. Included in the rack fee is site inspection
by a Community Cycles representative to help determine the best location for rack placement.
Businesses are required to maintain bike racks, including snow and ice removal around the racks.

For businesses seeking assistance with installing racks, Community cycles will complete installation at
a discounted rate of $50 per rack.  Businesses that do not choose to have Community Cycles complete the installation must install the racks within 6 weeks after taking the delivery of the racks.

"This is an excellent opportunity to get quality bike parking at some locations in Boulder that are
seriously lacking," says Community Cycles Advocacy Director Sue Prant. "We are really excited to be part
of this project that is addressing the needs of people who ride bikes in Boulder."

For more information, contact Sue Prant at sue@communitycycles.org or Marni Ratzel…

Green Bike Lanes in Boulder

Cyclists and motorists traveling north along Folsom Street will notice something new at the intersections of Canyon Boulevard and Pearl Street—green bike turning lanes. As part of a pilot project, the City of Boulder’s Transportation Division has installed the new pavement markings to promote community awareness and increase safety for both cyclists and motorists.

The city is testing the green bike turning lanes’ effectiveness with reducing “right hook” collisions, which involve a motorist making a right turn and accidentally colliding with a cyclist traveling in the same direction in the adjacent bike lane.

Citywide, approximately 14 percent of all motor vehicle collisions involving cyclists have been attributed to right hook collisions.  

The new pavement markings on Folsom Street are the first phase of the pilot project, with additional green bike turning lanes planned along Colorado Avenue and Table Mesa Drive this fall. Evaluations to test the effectiveness of the markings will include field observations and an online community survey to gather input from cyclists and motorists.

Community Cycles Wins Major Victory for Bicyclists at Deadly US36 and Violet Intersection

As reported last month, Community Cycles has been appealing to CDOT to improve conditions for cyclists at the US36 and Violet intersection following the second fatal bike accident in 3 years. The entire intersection will undergo a major redesign in 2015, so we are looking for quick mitigations to improve safety now. Community Cycles made a number of suggestions to CDOT that we felt could be quickly implemented at low cost and would greatly improve safety. We are pleased to report that some progress has been made.

CDOT is currently doing a signal warrant study on the intersection. A consultant has been hired to evaluate the intersection and produce a bike lanes striping plan. It is expected bike lanes should be completed by mid October. CDOT will also be doing a study on speed limits on this stretch of road. Thanks to hard work from the Community Cycles advocacy committee, Boulder Transportation Department staff and CDOT, hopefully this intersection will become much safer for bicyclists.

Community Cycles Working with CDOT to Improve Safety at Deadly US36 Intersection

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Community Cycles met with CDOT officials for a sight view of US36 and Violet intersection, which has been the site of two bicycle fatalities in the last three years. The current design of the intersection, which is under CDOT jurisdiction, facilitates motorists being able to make a left turn at a high rate of speed onto Violet because of the wide turn radius. The wide shoulder on the road also disappears at the intersection, which forces cyclists into the right turn lane or a high speed through lane. According to crash reports Community Cycles requested, there is remarkable similarity in both accidents.

According to discussions with CDOT, the intersection is set for construction in 2015. That project will re-design the intersection so that Violet meets US36 at a 90-degree angle, getting rid of the wide turn radius for motorists making a left onto Violet.

In the meantime, Community Cycles requested a meeting with CDOT officials at the crash site to look for immediate mitigations that can be made to make this intersection safer while we wait for the 2015 re-design project. City of Boulder Transportation Department and Boulder County Representatives also attended this sight view.

Community Cycles asked for the speed limits be lowered and a bike lane installed through the intersection. We requested the bike lane be painted to make it more obvious. Studies in Portland, OR have shown cyclists feel 50% safer in colored bike lanes and there has been a 20% increase in motorists yielding to cyclists in colored lanes.  A Demark study showed colored bike lanes reduced bike-car collisions by 38% and reduced fatalities and serious injuries by 71%.

While it took a fair amount of convincing of CDOT to agree to look into these…

Pearl Parkway, Boulder Slough and Junction Place

Representing cyclists during redevelopment of Pearl ParkwayNew development is coming to the Boulder Junction area. Pearl Parkway will become a multi-way boulevard, with two center travel lanes and a side street with parking. The multi-way boulevard is a new idea in Boulder. Community Cycles worked with Planning and Transportation to support a design option for the multi-way boulevard that had parking on the street side rather than curb-side. Meanwhile, developers of 3100 Pearl will construct a multi-use path parallel to Pearl that will eventually meet the Foothills path. However, this multi-use path would stop short of connecting with the underpass at the Boulder Slough. Completion of this missing link was not planned for some time. We worked with the city to move the missing link of the trail up in the project queue and recommended for funding.

Boulder County Bike Then Bus Program

Hey BOLT riders! Tired of lugging your bike on and off the bus every day? The Bus Then Bike program offers long-term bicycle parking in a card-key accessed shelter on 28th and Iris in Boulder and downtown Longmont. The shelters will provide a secure place for bikes and bike accessories to be stored overnight. Community Cycles is partnering with the county on this program and along with Bike Longmont will provide maintenance to the bike shelters.

Boulder Bike Station

Thanks to efforts of the Community Cycles Advocacy Committee, the city of Boulder  has applied for a BikeStation as part of a $4 million application to the Federal Transit Administration to remodel the 14th Street and Walnut Transit Center. The new station would include more areas for passenger pick-up, more spaces for bus layovers, a more attractive and safer waiting area for passengers, and 250 secure, protected bike parking spaces. The city will find out later this year if funds are awarded to this project.
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Fourmile Canyon Creek

Boulder is examining options for bicycle and pedestrian connections east of Crest View Elementary School. Of the three options on the table, two involve adding 5-foot-wide sidewalks to residential streets, while the third is a paved or gravel path along the Fourmile Canyon Creek drainage. All cost roughly the same amount.  Community Cycles strongly supports including a paved multi-use path along the creek with an underpass at 19th Street. This plan was approved by the public and city council in the original NOBO plan. The path can be plowed, allowing safe access all year. This option also represents an important segment of the planned Fourmile Creek Path.

Survey of Local Bike Businesses

When a segment of the business community has economic clout, it's often easier to get the attention of decision makers. In Boulder, we know that bicycle-related businesses contribute substantially to the economy. To quantify this, Community Cycles is conducting a survey of local bicycle-related businesses (58 of them!) to determine their local economic impact. This information will be used to push for pro-bicycling policies in Boulder.

The survey was featured in the Camera.

Here's our flyer suitable for sharing with those curious about the impact of cycling on Boulder's economy.

CC Works to Save Boulder Bike and Bus Projects

CC's Advocacy Director recently testified before the board of the Denver Regional Council of Governments in support of six bicycle and bus projects in Boulder and Boulder county that may be cut from the regional Transportation Improvement Plan. The Boulder projects scored well in the regional cooperation process, but when Denver did not receive funding for its highway project, officials went around the process and suggested cutting the Boulder projects. We will keep you posted.

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