On Sunday, July 16th, Flyers fans and fit Philadelphians will be pounding — and cycling across! — the pavement of Broad Street for the first Flyers Charity Classic, an annual event benefiting the Flyers Charities and the Flyers Alumni Association, who, in turn, support a bunch of nonprofits across Philadelphia. This is an expansion of the annual Flyers Charities 5K, which you probably already know and love, enhanced with a new course, new date and the addition of a cycling component.
In the category of Things We Would Have Never Seen Coming in 10,000 Years, there’s this: Stu Bykofsky — yes, that Stu Bykofsky, the Philadelphia Daily News columnist who famously hates cyclists — announced today that he’s hosting a bike ride. Actually, “hosting” isn’t even the right word; he’s the grand marshall of the first-ever Byko’s Safe Bike Ride, in which cyclists are required to follow all the rules of the road. Naturally.
And to be perfectly fair to Stu, he doesn’t hate cyclists: “I do not like bad bicycle behavior,” he told me yesterday. He added, “I do not think we need bike lanes — they’re a waste of space.” Read more »
The Indego bike share network turns one this April, and while the folks who run it are pleased with how well it’s done so far, it still has plenty of growing to do. Its expansion plans for the next year will both promote bike riding in Philadelphia’s biggest park and advance its mission of increasing bike ridership in the city’s disadvantaged communities.
Aaron Ritz, complete streets implementation manager in the city’s Office of Transportation and Infrastructure Systems, said that in the year ahead, 24 bike share stations would be added, most of them in neighborhoods bordering East and West Fairmount Park, including Brewerytown, Strawberry Mansion, Parkside, Mantua and Belmont.
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If anything, 2015 was the Year of the Bike on the transportation front locally, with major new facilities opening up the promise of faster, easier bike commuting, adding steam to a steady climb in practical bike use. And one major event that promised to disrupt lives all over the city instead opened everyone’s eyes to the potential contained in car-free streets (done right this time; no one’s interested in bringing the Chestnut Street Transitway back from the dead). But the biggest transportation story of the year is the one that’s still not over yet. Herewith, my picks for Top Philadelphia Transportation Developments of 2015: Read more »
A bill has been introduced to the Pennsylvania House Transportation Committee which would require bicyclists to wear highly visible reflective clothing at nighttime under all circumstances. But the safety-minded legislation, sponsored by Allegheny County Representative Anthony DeLuca, is being harshly rebuffed by cycling groups.
Bike Pittsburgh thinks it’s crap, for one. In a blog post referring to the legislation as a “bicycle fashion bill,” the group lambasted DeLuca’s efforts (while noting that his bill was “most likely well-intentioned”), saying this change would force bicyclists to carry around special clothing in the event they’re caught riding when the sun goes down. Further, the group notes, the state vehicle code already requires headlamps and rear lighting on bicycles. Read more »
Cycling has exploded in the city, but thankfully, traffic accidents involving bicycles have not. Last year, the number of bicycle crashes was nearly half (551) what it was in 1998 (1,058). The number of bicycling fatalities has also dropped, although much less dramatically over that span. After recording an astonishing zero deaths in 2013, the city rose back up to three last year — the same figure posted in 1998 (the median over that span was four deaths). Read more »
For the first time ever in a Philadelphia mayoral campaign, all of the candidates in this year’s primary tipped their proverbial hats to the importance of multimodal transit.
This was no more apparent than at the 2015 Better Mobility Forum, which was attended by five of the six Democratic contenders, along with Republican candidate Melissa Murray Bailey. The event, which was moderated by Citified, covered once-niche, increasingly mainstream topics like “Vision Zero,” the elitism of bike lanes, and ways to improve SEPTA. Half the candidates claimed to ride the bus to work, and Bailey said she is part of a SEPTA family.
Hosting a forum on matters of mobility, during the thick of election season no less, is one step forward for the nascent — but viable — political constituency surrounding transit issues, which includes bike advocates, civically-minded pedestrians, and residents who rely on public transportation. That last subset in particular — people dependent on SEPTA — is robust.
And yet, we in the press often minimize how many Philadelphians fall into that camp. Read more »
If you signed up for Indego Bike Share Philly, which officially launches on April 23rd, you should be receiving your Indego key and welcome packet in the mail any day now. (I got mine on Saturday.) And if you haven’t signed up yet, here’s where to do so.
But before you sign up, it’s helpful to know where the bikes are going to be and how many bikes are going to be docked at each location. So here is your neighborhood-by-neighborhood list of Indego Bike Share Philly station locations. If you live in neighborhoods like Overbrook, Kensington, West Philly (beyond Clark Park) or deep South Philadelphia (there’s not a single bike south of Morris Street), you’re out of luck.
Click on each neighborhood to see Indego Bike Share Philly stations nearby, or just scroll down to see the entire list. Read more »
New research suggests that “Complete Streets” — those carefully designed, multi-modal travel corridors that often include, yes, bike lanes — can yield handsome returns on investment for cities. Like millions, sometimes realized in no more than a year, because shared streets reduce collisions, which in turn saves money on medical costs and property damage. And there’s more. These street alterations are also correlated with increased property values and even higher employment numbers. Read more »
A map made by Philly analytics guy and bike rider Gregory Kaminski shows where bike thefts are most common in Philly. It’s largely common sense: Most thefts are in Center City and University City.
But it’s interesting to see the details. Technically Philly’s Juliana Reyes flags the number of bikes stolen across the street from City Hall — 15, the most in the data.