A key part of getting more people to ride a bike is making our environment safer and more convenient for bike riding. To accomplish this, SVBC advocates for cyclists at the local, regional, state, and national levels. We attend public meetings, rally our member advocates to participate in decision-making, write position letters, research and promote best practices, and serve as consultants for government agencies that have the power to promote cycling through sustainable land use and transportation planning. Our actions are guided by this vision statement:
We promote the bicycle for everyday use in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties because we believe bicycling is good for our community. We believe that a bicycle will expand a child’s world. We believe that land use and transportation systems can be reformed and engineered in ways that make cycling a more attractive activity. We believe cyclists need good roads, but well designed trails are also an important part of a complete bicycle network. We believe secure and prolific bicycle parking should be provided at workplaces, schools, and other important destinations. And we believe that, in order to extend bicyclists’ range, transit needs to fully accommodate cyclists, by providing space for carrying bicycles on buses, trains, and shuttles. Together, these ideals help create a community that is well-connected, healthy, and accessible to all.
SVBC’s advocacy initiatives are started in a number of ways. Staff members may frequently hear about an area of concern or opportunity; our partner organizations may ask us to sign on to a campaign; or, we may be invited to participate in a planning process by a government agency. Our Policy Advisory Committee, composed of directors and appointed SVBC members, makes suggestions to the Board of Directors and the Executive Director based on our evolving Policy Framework. The most important inspiration for our advocacy initiatives is our members, who bring local issues to our attention by contacting staff directly or participating in one of our Local Teams.