Diana Gavales & Kate Clouse
Name: Diana Gavales
& Kate Clouse
Neighborhood: Park Slope/East Village
Member since: 1990s/1999
Occupation: Diana, a development associate, and Kate, a special
projects coordinator, are co-workers at a labor organization in Brooklyn and
loyal T.A. volunteers.
OK, what's your story?
Kate: Our desks are side-by-side, and we realized during my first week
at work that we both volunteer for T.A. We stay up-to-date on TA activities
and go to them together.
What kinds of volunteering have you done?
Diana: I came to volunteer nights on and off for a few years, then last
summer started going to Brooklyn Committee meetings and helped out with route
painting for the Century Ride. Now I'm coordinating Operation Hazard ID, where
we ride around neighborhoods and record street hazards for the DOT to fix. I'm
a big fan of (water-soluble, non-toxic) spray paint.
Kate: Lots of different things through the years: representing T.A. at
Bike NY and the Century Ride, taking photos for the magazine, helping with
bike counts, plus volunteer nights, which are always fun. I also enjoy helping
out with Bike Week.
Why do you like cycling in the city?
Diana: I like the drama of it and the independence. Also, biking is
often the fastest way to get around town.
Kate: I totally agree with the feeling of independence. There's nothing
better than talking to someone who has just started cycling in the city and
seeing the excitement of new-found mobility. With cycling, you choose your own
route with every turn-it's liberating to be so self-sufficient.
What issues concern you as a T.A. member?
Diana: I'm shocked at the number of people driving cars in the city.
New York has an amazing, comprehensive transit system. I grew up here and
never drove, and I don't feel hindered in getting around because there are so
many options. The pollution and heavy traffic are extreme prices that everyone
pays for a few people's perceived convenience. I support bridge tolls, the
Carpool Rule and traffic calming designs to address these problems.
Kate: Overall quality of life in the city, as both a cyclist and a
pedestrian. Improvements like the Hudson River Greenway are fantastic but
there's much more the City can be doing, and I'm glad that T.A. is a force
pushing the City in the right direction. Specifically, I'm concerned about the
city's tolerance of aggressive driving, the amount of cars commuting into the
city and the ineffectiveness of city buses. I'm also a fan of red light
cameras, traffic calming and wider sidewalks.
What is your favorite ride in the city?
Diana: I love the Carroll Street Bridge over the Gowanus. Also, Clinton
Hill-riding down Vanderbilt to the Navy Yards, there are some amazing wooden
houses with porches that I fantasize about living in one day.
Kate: Brooklyn by bike on a gorgeous fall day is sublime. I'm also
particularly fond of the little stretch of bike lane on 5th Avenue in
Manhattan from 14th Street to Washington Square, and riding down St. Marks