Policy Advisory Committee prepares for area polls

SVBC is thrilled to have an amazing Policy Advisory Committee. This election cycle, the committee has decided that SVBC will survey candidates in key races regarding their commitment to advance the cause of biking. While as a 501(c)3 we can't endorse candidates, we can ask them questions and publish their responses to help guide voters. We have determined a set of questions to ask candidates, and now we need your help in determining what races are key in your community! We will certainly be including the County Supervisor races in both Santa Clara and San Mateo–but please let us know what local races you think would be beneficial to cover in your city. The questions we'll ask include: 1. Where do you see bikes fitting into the overall transportation plan? 2. If elected, what are three things that you would do to improve cycling opportunities for your constituents? 3. What have you done or worked on in the past that shows your record of being involved in bicycle, active transportation, or road/trail improvement campaigns? 4. With dedicated funding for cycling projects under fire on the regional, state, and federal level, what would you do to keep those dollars flowing? 5. Ask about specific timely projects for election (eg specific bike lane project, facilities, or components of a bike plan to implement). If you're interested in having us ask questions of your local candidates, please let us know and also help us out with one or two city-specific questions. The policy advisory committee includes board members Jeff Selzer (chair), Ian Dewar, James Lucas, and Jeff Miller, along with appointed members...

Groundbreaking session at the SV Bike Advocacy Summit

Last week, at our Silicon Valley Bike Advocacy Summit, we hosted a closed session as part of our Vision Zero campaign. This was a follow up from the Stanford Trauma Bike Safety Summit in November. We thought that gathering leaders from local towns, law enforcement, and others to openly discuss their own goals to promote roadway safety would help to create a “solutions team” to work on the issues facing cyclists in our area would be productive step towards promoting roadway safety. And productive the session was! We had high-level representatives from the following groups: CHP San Mateo and Santa Clara County Sheriff Departments Woodside Fire Department Caltrans DMV AAA The towns of Portola Valley, Woodside, and Los Altos Hills, and the City of Redwood City Stanford Trauma and Stanford Hospital These folks joined SVBC representatives and several other bike club representatives from groups like PenVelo and Alta Velo. The topics discussed included: Respect on the roadways Infrastructure design and maintenance and complete streets equity Diversion programs and other ways to bring in more education Ways the cycling community can model good behavior along with ways to conduct motorist outreach and education Effective enforcement Tech solutions for road hazard reporting Volume of recreational riders on roads versus capacity to serve and deal with potential emergencies Perhaps most significantly, the group expressed a collective sense of ownership of the issues and agreed to meet regularly to address these topics on an ongoing basis. As we move forward, we will be able to share more details of the initiative as they take...

Bikes and Apples

I met today with Eric Morley who is on the team of people leading Apple's development efforts for their new campus. This project has been on my radar for a while, since it's going to be one of the most significant developments in our area in this decade–or arguably this century. Bandwidth allowing, SVBC tries to have a positive impact on bikabilily in and around huge projects of this type (we've already worked with Facebook and Google, as many of our dear readers know), as they have significant impact on traffic and there is the potential to secure remediations that have positive effects on cycling and walking. At this time we are starting up an SVBC Apple Focus Group. The charge of this group will be to work with me and the Apple leadership on providing specific feedback to their designs moving forward. If you are interested in joining this group (only a small number of members will be appointed), please contact us using the form at the bottom of the page and let us know a little about yourself and why you are interested in joining this team. The Apple Focus Group will probably meet several times in 2012 starting in...

Notes from the east

On Monday morning I flew into D.C. for a week of networking, lobbying, and good old fashioned work. All Monday afternoon I had the League of American Bicyclists (LAB) board meeting, and a dinner with the board that evening. The LAB board is comprised of amazing, dedicated individuals, making it a pleasure to serve on. On Tuesday, I hung out with the ladies at the historic, first ever National Women Cycling Forum, and then attended the LAB annual members' meeting where I had the pleasure of introducing myself to the members. The National Bike Summit kicked off with its opening dinner, and afterward I made good on my board commitment at the annual major donor reception by helping to facilitate a significant donation to the League. Only then did I get a chance to drop by the Alliance for Biking and Walking reception, which was still going strong. Wednesday was the heart of the conference portion of the National Bike Summit. I learned some interesting things in between ducking out for meetings with various national-level leaders and for SVBC Governance and Development Committees' phone meetings. The day ended with the annual meeting of the BikesPAC. Yes, our movement now has it's own PAC and donates to political campaigns. If you're loaded and you love cycling, be sure to look it up. Finally, on Thursday, the day of lobbying had arrived. I spent the day meeting with members of Congress, attempting to convince them in various ways to support cycling, mostly by passing a friendly transportation bill. On Friday, I took the train up to Boston to try the Boston...

Pedaling with the Lord Mayor

On Sunday morning I had the joy of joining the San José Bike Party ride honoring the Lord Mayor of Dublin. And yes–that's the Dublin across the pond, not the one in California. Apparently San José and Dublin are sister cities and the officials from each get together annually. What better way to meet than on bike? San José department leads from Transportation–Hans Larson–and Economic Develompment–Kim Walesh–were on the ride. The relaxed pace allowed me to chat with Hans about how SVBC can continue to support the City's recent application to Bikes Belong Foundation for the Green Lanes Project. SVBC recently penned a letter of support for the City's application, and I feel it's an important effort that SVBC should stand behind. Being accepted as one of six focus cities of the project would mean that San José would gain access to resources and technical assistance in its quest to implement its Bike Plan 2020. I think the “Capital of Silicon Valley” is an ideal city to show off innovative bike facilities, and I'm crossing my fingers for the City's success. SVBC member and erstwhile bike thief bouncer Carlos Babcock was instrumental in organizing the ride, and I saw many other members and friends there, including Councilmember Rose Herrera, Richard Masoner, John Brazil and Libby Dressel, John Ristow, Ian and Amber Emmons, Tian Harter, and Diane Solomon. Thanks for showing up everybody! It's always a pleasure to get together to promote bike culture in Silicon...