T.A. StreetBeat

January 29th, 2009

If you build it they will come. If it's filled with ice, they will fall.

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Events and Alerts

T.A. in the News

  • "You can't encourage people to bike and then have a bike lane that doesn't function for five months out of the year," said group spokesman Wiley Norvell.

    -- NY Post, 1/21

Who You Gonna Call?

Even hearty winter cyclists need safe, inviting space.

Icy bike lanes and nearly impassable bridge paths had cyclists up in arms last week, and with good reason: treacherous conditions not only endanger cyclists, but they send a strong message that bikes are at the bottom of New York City's transportation food chain.

If the city wants to live up to its commitment to grow cycling, it needs to keep bike facilities safe for year-round use. You can help them do their job by reporting any and all unsafe lane conditions to a 311 operator. In the meantime, T.A. will be working with City agencies to make sure that bike lanes and bridge path issues can be better tracked in the 311 system and better handled by the Transportation and Sanitation Departments.

For the most up-to-date bridge-bikeability reports, check out the nycbridgereport twitter feed.

Off the Street and into Buildings

Nothing spices up a cubicle and piques the interest of coworkers like a bike.

Now that the "Bicycle Access Bill" (Intro. 871) has been heard by the City Council's Transportation Committee and the Housing and Buildings Committee, it's up to the Council's leader, Speaker Quinn, to facilitate the legislation's fine-tuning and shepherd it to the floor for a vote (back in 2004, when the bill was known as Intro. 155, Quinn was a co-sponsor).

Not only would this landmark legislation complement the Department of City Planning's proposed zoning code changes for new construction, it would also address the single biggest impediment for today's would-be bike commuters: capricious policies that keep bikes from entering most existing commercial buildings.

Take Action!

Send an e-fax to Speaker Quinn and let her know that you support Intro. 871, the Bicycle Access Bill, and that she should too.

Tough Times for Transit: A National Concern

Transit agencies around the country are facing frightening budget prospects.

New York City straphangers aren't the only transit users facing tough times. The $825 billion stimulus bill winding its way through Washington has only $9 billion set aside for all the nation's transit needs. Considering that NYC's next 5-year capital plan is short a very necessary $17 billion, and scores of other cities around the country are in need of large amounts of capital funding as well, such a meager allocation of funds is simply not enough.

Thankfully, Representative Jerry Nadler (D-Manhattan) introduced an amendment that calls for an additional $3 billion in transit funds, and with the encouragement of T.A. and other livable streets activists across the country, the amendment passed. Of course, there is more to be done—the Senate must include a similar amendment and both houses must pass the full bill into law. It's imperative that the final stimulus bill aggressively support mass transit, especially when ridership is higher than it has been in fifty years. To find out how you can make sure transit doesn't get short changed in the stimulus bill, go to t4america.org.

T.A. Takes on the East Side

The East Side deserves bike lanes better than this one. Image Courtesy of Liam Quigley.

T.A. is kicking off an exciting new campaign focused on winning better biking, walking and transit on the East Side of Manhattan, and we are calling on our East Side members and volunteers to join us as we fight for:

East Siders will soon have the opportunity to join their own T.A. volunteer committee and organize like their fellow T.A. volunteers in the Brooklyn, Queens and Bronx committees.

NYC Needs More Daylight, and Daylighting

Daylighting is an easy way to make intersections safer. Image courtesy Streetfilms.org.

Although T.A. can't do much to brighten up the five boroughs in terms of actual daylight (contact us if you know about an advocacy group that can), we think more "daylighting" at intersections throughout the five boroughs could go a long way towards making streets safer and more inviting for pedestrians.

Daylighting is a simple pedestrian safety measure achieved by removing the parking spaces immediately surrounding an intersection. It increases visibility for pedestrians and drivers and minimizes turning conflicts. Our friends at Streetfilms made a great video about it. Check it out!

T.A. Member Meetup

Come in from the cold and meet your fellow T.A. members for our first Member Meetup of 2009! Join T.A. staff, volunteers, and members for a fun, informal event. No cover--snacks are on us, drinks are on you. Open to all T.A. members. Not a member? Join at the door and get a free Summer Streets t-shirt. No RSVPs required, but if you know you're coming e-mail membership@transalt.org.

Thursday, February 12th
6-8 pm
D.B.A. Bar
41 1st Avenue (between 2nd and 3rd Street)


Sign up and ride with TEAM T.A.

TEAM T.A. is a group of cyclists dedicated to raising funds for T.A.'s advocacy work, while preparing to ride in the 20th annual NYC Century Bike Tour.

It's a great way to get in shape, meet some new biking buds and support walking, cycling and mass transit in New York City. You also get an awesome T.A. bike jersey!

For more about TEAM T.A. email info@teamta.org or visit nyccentury.org/TEAMTA.

Century Registration Opens February 2nd!

Mark your calendars and ready your credit cards: registration for the 2009 NYC Century Bike Tour opens this Monday, February 2nd.

This year's NYC Century Bike Tour is sure to be the biggest and best ever. Not only is it our 20th anniversary, but we have new routes, new events and some exciting new sponsors, and, as always, when you ride the NYC Century, you bike for better biking!

Register beginning February 2nd and you could win a Dahon Folding Bike.