Action Alerts

Wanted: Awesome Organized Person to Join WA Bikes Team

You — the administrative support whiz looking for a part-time position working for something you can believe in. People describe you as:

  • Organized
  • Detail-oriented
  • A good communicator
  • Comfortable working in an open environment with a lot going on
  • Good at shifting between tasks quickly
  • Someone who makes others feel welcomed

Us — the statewide bike advocacy nonprofit in the nation’s #1 Bicycle Friendly State:

  • A great team of staff, board members, and volunteers and supporters who grow bicycling through education for school and family biking, information for local advocates and riders, promotion of bike travel/tourism, and effective public policy work to pass laws, support their implementation, and improve conditions on the ground.
  • A cool work space in the heart of Seattle’s Pioneer Square with easy bike and transit connections and indoor bike parking. (That is to say, we all bring our bikes inside.)
  • The organization working for the past 27 years to make bicycling accessible, convenient, safe, and fun.

You don’t need to be an expert on bike gear or a speedy high-mileage rider. You should be passionate about creating the conditions that enable people of all ages and abilities to ride bicycles.

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The Seattle-based team: Blake, Barb, El, Jack, Seth, and Louise.

You’re someone who can relate effectively to people who come in with diverse backgrounds and different levels of biking experience. They come to us seeking advice about bike travel, commuting, family biking, places to ride, and other information related to bicycling.

You’re the kind of person who welcomes the learning opportunities you’ll have in the position and the chance to own the smooth operational success of some of our programs, along with contributing to the success of others.

Sound perfect? Read the details in the Administrative Coordinator_2014_Job Description. Send a cover letter highlighting both your skills and your interest in our mission along with a resume and names/contact information for three references to office@WAbikes.org with the subject line “Administrative Coordinator application”.

Kate Johnston (left) from our Spokane office with Katie Ferris, a parent who cares about safe biking and walking.

Kate Johnston (left) from our Spokane office with Katie Ferris, a member of the Spokefest Association board in Spokane.

We’ll begin reviewing applications Wednesday, August 6, 2014. Position is open until filled. We intend to conduct interviews the second and third weeks of August and anticipate having someone in the position shortly after Labor Day. You’ll be right in the thick of things as we ramp up toward our big annual auction November 15 and beyond — the bike advocacy season runs all year long.

What are we really looking for? This slideshow should give you an idea.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Posted in Alert, News | Leave a comment

Last Week to Comment: Does Your Safety Count?

If they don’t count, it doesn’t count. Unfortunately in Washington state and on the federal level, no requirements exist to develop strong robust performance measures around non-motorized safety. Comment before June 30 to tell the US Department of Transportation that Safety Counts!

As cyclists, we know about safety. It’s a constant topic of conversation: how best to be seen, the best route to take, and words of concern (“bike safe!”) we often hear from friends and family before a ride.

Yet despite all the talk and worry about bicycling safety, there’s rarely accountability at the state and federal levels of government to find solutions to prevent bicycling injuries or deaths.

In Washington state, while serious injuries and deaths are on the decline for many motor-vehicle  incidents, we’re falling short of our state’s “Target Zero” goal of zero deaths and serious injuries by 2030 for those that walk and bike.

Their safety needs to count, too. pedbikeimages.org/M. Cynecki

Their safety needs to count, too. pedbikeimages.org/M. Cynecki

Now’s your last chance to begin to change this. The US Department of Transportation is now in its final week of accepting comments on its plan to measure whether or not the nation’s transportation system is working for all Americans.  Unfortunately, its first draft fails to include any goal, accountability, or requirements to reduce the 16% of all fatal crashes that include people who bike and walk.

Tell the US Department of Transportation  that safety counts and improving bicycling safety should count, too.

The US Department of Transportation needs to hear from you today. Let them know that safety for bicycling counts.

In addition to their helpful letter writing tool, the League of American Bicyclists has provided additional background on why we need to do better to count bicyclists and improve our transportation system for everyone.

Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Federal, Funding/Policy, Issues & Advocacy, News, Safety, Transportation | Leave a comment

Heads-up: Getting Your Bike Through Highway Construction in Snohomish County & Whatcom County

Give-em-a-Brake_Construction-Zone-SignsThe Washington State Department of Transportation currently has contractor crews paving four sections of SR 9 — three shorter ones in the Arlington area and one long section in Whatcom County. The work will continue through mid-August.

Much of the project has wide shoulders that will safely allow bicyclists to pass. But during the paving project, some sections of the work zone could be potentially hazardous for bicyclists or could create situations where bicycles would interact with motorized vehicles on the highway. These include

  • SR 9 Milepost 23.70 to Milepost 28.88 in the Arlington area
  • SR 9 Milepost 69.46 to Milepost 79.41 in Whatcom County

To safely get cyclists through these sections, the contractor has established signed bicycle staging areas at each end of the work zone. This will allow the contractor to safely ferry bicyclists through the work zone. The staging areas are located at locations with cell phone service. Either a project flagger will call for a truck to transport the bicyclists through the work zone, or there will be a phone number to call a construction supervisor, who will transport the bicyclists. Delays for bicyclists should be 20 minutes or less.

The bicycle staging areas will only operate during construction hours:

  • 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. near Arlington
  • 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Whatcom County

At other hours, bicyclists should proceed with caution because of loose gravel on the roadway.

For project updates, go WSDOT’s construction update pages for Snohomish and Whatcom counties:

Want to stay up on bike news around the state? Sign up for our e-news.

Your Turn

  • If you ride through this area let us know how it goes.

 

Posted in Alert, Arlington, Infrastructure, News, Snohomish County, Whatcom County, WSDOT | Leave a comment

Washington State Is America’s #1 Bicycle Friendly State 7th Year in a Row

Bicyclists of Washington, when someone asks you where you’re from, the answer is, “The #1 Bicycle-Friendly State in the whole country!”

Kicking off National Bike MoLeague of American Bicyclists logonth, the League of American Bicyclists has released its latest ranking of Bicycle Friendly States. Washington once again achieved the #1 ranking nationally, making this the seventh straight year. We’ve held the top spot every year the League has issued its evaluation.

This top ranking reflects the hard work of many, many people and organizations and we’re so very proud of our state. Now we go to work to make Washington even BETTER for bicycling.

Where Washington State Scores Especially Well

  • 4 out of 5 points possible in legislation and enforcement
  • 4 out of 5 points in policies and programs
  • 5 in education and encouragement.

Building the full portfolio of what it takes to achieve these scores takes persistence across the board from advocates to agencies to elected officials who know how much bicycling contributes to stronger, healthier people, businesses, and communities.

That’s why Washington Bikes has led the charge for better bicycling and safer streets in the legislature for 27 years.

Where Washington Needs to Improve

  • 2 out of 5 points for infrastructure and funding. It’s critical for the legislature to invest in balanced transportation investments and to address the safety needs of all of us using the road.
  • 3 points in evaluation and planning. The state needs to collect better data about bicycle use, safety issues, and performance measures – a directive coming from the federal government as well.

Looking Ahead

We’re celebrating, but we don’t take our #1 spot for granted. For one thing, other states are chasing us. States that are investing more in bike infrastructure than Washington state know they’ll have a competitive advantage.

Our legislative advocacy and the work of partner groups around the state to enhance bicycling in our communities are both more critical than ever.

The Washington Bikes mission directly addresses the key indicators for the Bicycle Friendly States ranking. We work to:

  • increase infrastructure and funding that provide on-the-ground bicycle facilities;
  • fund and provide education and encouragement programs that promote cycling;
  • work for passage and enforcement of bicycle-friendly laws that make it safe and comfortable for people of all ages to ride.

What we’re working on to increase and improve bicycling even faster:

  • Creating information bike travelers need to plan fantastic vacations and day trips so they’ll ride — and spend — in Washington.
  • Mapping the US Bicycle Route System in Washington to provide complete cross-state routes and highlight the small towns along the way.
  • Identifying the businesses that want to attract biking customers: shops, restaurants, crafters of every fine beverage from cider to coffee to your-favorite-here, accommodations, markets, galleries, service providers, fun places, cultural attractions, and more.
  • Helping businesses connect with bicyclists who want to support the businesses that support them because bikes mean business.
  • Developing resources and toolkits individuals and groups can use to grow bicycling directly, whether it’s by starting up a bike train to your daughter’s school or showing up at your City Council when it’s time to testify.
  • And more ideas we have waiting their turn in the bike rack!

With your support we’ll celebrate again this time next year, but with more miles of lanes and trails built, better connections, safer streets, more kids learning to ride, more businesses competing to attract biking customers, and more elected officials saying they prioritize investing in bicycling because it’s the right thing to do: for you, for your town, for the state.

More Information

Spread the word to help celebrate National Bike Month and our 7 years in a row as the #1 Bicycle-Friendly State!

Send this post to your biking friends. Encourage them to sign up for our e-news so they hear about milestones like this one along with events, local advocacy efforts, and and our work with agencies and in the legislature on behalf of better bicycling for everyone.

Sign Up to Receive the Bicycle Friendly Scorecard

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Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Education, Encouragement, Funding/Policy, Infrastructure, Issues & Advocacy, Legislature, News, Safety, Tourism, Travel, USBRS | 2 Comments

Build a Better Burke-Gilman Trail NOW!

The University of Washington is applying for a TIGER 2014 grant from USDOT to improve the entire portion of the Burke-Gilman Trail that runs through campus (1.7 miles, from near University Village to near the I-5 bridge). Less roots. More safety. Better trailbed. Your voice counts! Project support is one of the criteria USDOT will consider when taking the University’s application into consideration. Make your voice heard today! Click here to add your name to the list of project supporters.
 
To find out more about the proposed improvements and grant application, visit uw.edu/burke-gilman.
Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Funding/Policy, Seattle, Trails | 6 Comments

Vote: Save King County Metro and Roads Today

A special April election will determine whether King County faces huges cuts to Metro transit and roads maintenance.

bike on busJust weeks before bike to work month, King County voters face a vital April special election. It will determine whether Metro Transit will face huge cuts and if we maintain King County roads for cars and bikes.

Vote YES on Prop 1 to keep our buses running and prevent major cuts to Metro bus service. We need to make sure our seniors, students, people with disabilities, and working families still have a way to get around.

Vote YES on Prop 1 to preserve King County’s roads and bridges. Forty percent of Prop 1 goes directly to each community in the county to make our streets, roads, and bridges safer. Spending $1 now to repair our roadways avoids $6-14 in replacement costs if we continue to put off these critical investments. Better local roads benefit bicyclists across King County.

We like bike racks on buses – we need more of these, not less. Every workday 400,000 trips are taken on Metro; less buses mean worse traffic and a longer commute.

Ballots are due by April 22nd — Earth Day. But there’s no need to wait. Mail in your ballot as soon as you get home.  Vote YES on Prop 1 today!

Together we can keep King County moving whether you bus, bike, drive, or walk.

Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Funding/Policy, King County, Transit, Transportation | Leave a comment

Celebrate the Past and Present of Snohomish County’s Centennial Trail

Looking for a way to celebrate and show that Washington Bikes in Snohomish County? This Saturday, February 15 at 9 am, Snohomish County leaders will join in Snohomish to celebrate and officially sign the purchase agreement with the Port of Seattle to extend the Centennial Trail another 12 additional miles south as a multimodal connection for bikers, walkers, and rail.Parks Cen e-mail

The extended trail will link the city of Snohomish with Woodinville, Redmond and Renton. It will serve as a major next step in connecting the region’s trail network, ultimately including the Burke Gilman, Eastside Rail Corridor and East Lake Sammamish Trails.

The 12 mile extension creates a 42 mile trail stretching across the entirety of Snohomish County and reaching the borders of King and Skagit counties. The extension will grow the trail and the County as a destination for both locals and visitors, alike. Bicyclists are wallets on wheels – biking customers are fueled by calories and typically stop – and spend – in every town they pass through.

Centennial Trail. Photo by Joe Mabel

Centennial Trail. Photo by Joe Mabel

The signing ceremony begins at 9am at the southern terminus of the Centennial Trail (504 4th St., Snohomish).

Afterwards, the party heads north to unveil Snohomish County’s new PASTforward program at the Machias Trailhead (1624 Virginia St., Snohomish).

“The PASTforward program is a fascinating look at our county’s history,” said Parks and Recreation director Tom Teigen. “Our industrial and agricultural roots are incredibly diverse, and I think people will be amazed at some of the stories they discover. It’s worth a walk down the trail this spring just to check out these new interpretive signs.” Snohomish County is hosting a new website on the Centennial Trail that features this rich history: http://www.centennialtrail.com/

Hope to see you there!

Blog Posts to Inspire Your Snohomish County Bicycle Trip

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Posted in Alert, Economic Impact, Everett, Infrastructure, News, People, Rides, Tourism, Trails, Transportation, Travel | Leave a comment

WAbikes in Olympia: SB 6227 – Strengthening Washington’s Distracted Driving Law

On Tuesday, Washington Bikes testified in support of Senate Bill 6227 to further strengthen our state’s distracted driving laws and to retain our status as a leader in pursuing safer streets. This new legislation, led by Senate Transportation co-chair Tracey Eide, builds upon her 2010 legislation, SB 6345, that made handheld cell phone use while driving a primary offense.

This legislation is a part of Washington Bikes’ 2014 legislative agendaContact your state senators to tell them you support closing loopholes and strengthening penalties on driving distracted in Washington state.

Since 2010, when Washington Bikes helped lead the successful lobbying to start to reduce distracted driving, it’s even more obvious that distracted driving affects all of us. Distraction contributes to 26% of fatal crashes in Washington state. This legislation helps close loopholes and stiffens penalties to reduce this growing concern, especially as smart phones become more and more central to people’s lives.largenocellphones-png-md

In fact, a new study by Harborview’s Dr. Beth Ebel shows that electronic distraction is growing, with nearly one out of every ten Washington state drivers engaged with a handheld device at any moment.

Reducing distracted driving helps create a culture of safety for drivers and the most vulnerable roads users – children, pedestrians, and bicyclists. The risks around distraction can be more intense because bicyclists and pedestrians – including children – are less visible and more prone to go unnoticed by distracted drivers, with tragic consequences.

SB 6227 improves upon the current law by broadening the definition so that any person (with much narrower exceptions) operating a motor vehicle while holding a personal wireless communications device is guilty of a traffic infraction. It closes loopholes such as being able to use one’s phone while stopped at an intersection or stoplight (currently legal), it also expands the definitions of handheld uses to ban texting and email use on smart phones. Additional violations receive twice the penalty, plus violations go on one’s driver record for insurance purposes. Finally, distracted driving would be included in Department of Licensing exams (currently they are not).

These are common sense fixes that provide law enforcement more tools to stop distracted driving and to stiffen consequences.

It’s now time to improve Washington state’s distracted driving laws. Contact your state senators to tell them you support closing loopholes and strengthening penalties on driving distracted in Washington state.

In addition to support from Washington Bikes, Tuesday’s work session and testimony featured support from the Washington State Patrol, Washington State Traffic Safety Commission, Childhood Obesity Prevention and others. The entire work session and testimony video is included below.

Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Funding/Policy, Issues & Advocacy, Legislature, News, Safety, Transportation | 1 Comment

Transportation Advocacy Day

Be a citizen lobbyist for a day!

Join Washington Bikes and our partners for Transportation Advocacy Day in Olympia! Held annually during the legislative session, this year’s event is on February 27.

Transportation Advocacy Day is your opportunity to meet with your legislators (we’ll schedule the meeting for you!) and connect with other advocates from around the state. We’ll provide you with the tools and information you need to effectively advocate for a better bicycle environment in your community and state. Carpools are available and lunch is provided. RSVP today!

Read our blog post about Transportation Advocacy Day 2013.

Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Events, Funding/Policy, Issues & Advocacy, Legislature, News, Olympia | 1 Comment

Planning for a Bikeable, Walkable Spokane: Finding a Way Forward Together

Spokane Petition

Bicycle-Friendly Community signThe City of Spokane has announced the elimination of the Bicycle/Pedestrian Coordinator position. The message filtering out now, as Spokane bike advocates raise questions about this decision, is that their intent is to have the bike/pedestrian function built into the work of everyone who works on city streets.

We hear that statement as a promise to make Spokane a better city for bicycling and walking—a goal we share.

The way the decision was made and announced, however, and past history give the citizens who devote their time and energy to better biking, better walking, and Complete Streets some concern. We want to treat this as an opportunity to work together for better bicycling and walking–hence, this petition.

We the undersigned ask for a constructive public discussion about our multimodal future and for a public commitment to specific, measurable goals, progress reports, and process improvements that move us–together–beyond a cars-first approach.

Then we will all be able to celebrate more comfortable, more inviting streets for all that will truly make us the city of choice for future generations.

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We'll use this to determine your City Council district if you don't know it.

 

The Specifics

We need to hear a deeper dialogue and public commitment from the mayor, the City Council, and department heads that they truly will walk and bike the talk to assure us Spokane is moving forward, not back.

To believe that biking and walking are going to be at the big table and truly embedded in every decision and design, we call on elected and appointed city leaders to engage in discussions with citizen leaders and, based on those discussions, to provide specific answers to five questions in two essential arenas: operational and aspirational:

Operational

  • How will training needs be assessed and how will city staff acquire the expertise necessary to create and implement thoughtful and appropriate design of streets for all?
  • How will staff at all levels be evaluated for their contributions to better bicycling and walking and how will their accomplishments be recognized?
  • What staff will serve as the point of contact within the city for concerns related to bicycling and walking?

Aspirational

  • Will the mayor and City Council commit to a bold and specific goal for increases in biking and walking by a specific year, allocate city resources to work toward those, and report progress to the community annually?
  • Will the mayor and City Council commit to the goal of moving Spokane from Bronze level Bicycle-Friendly Community status to Silver, as a means of benchmarking against national standards, and develop specific plans for this status to be achieved?

Final Note

A focused position and the work of local citizen volunteers has yielded many results in the past 4-1/2 years. To name just a few:

  • Recognition of Spokane as a Bronze level Bicycle-Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists
  • $10-$12 million in non-local grants and funding for bike/pedestrian projects
  • Significant bike projects including the downtown network, closure of gaps in the Centennial Trail, University District Bike-Pedestrian Bridge progress, Iron Bridge, High Drive, Addison-Standard, and more
  • Estimated bike facilities additions: 11 miles of bike lanes, 7 miles of shared-use, off-street paved trails, and 6 miles of marked shared routes (signage and/or sharrows)

We believe this kind of progress can only continue with specific aspirational and operational commitments from city leaders. We look forward to a positive, constructive response and future celebrations of continued progress.

Names of Supporters

Leann Yamamoto

Erika Henry

Gage Stromberg

Eva Silverstone

Timothy Dickerson

Philip Sandifur

Henry Greer

Robin Deruwe

John Driscoll

Daniel Schaffer

Marla Emde

Louise Harless

Alan Jacob

Linda Prussack

Craig Minette

Alexander Martinek

Chris Voges

Mary Ann Bosky

Betsy Lawrence

Susie Prussack

Roger Bosky

Lynnetta Ellis

Jaime Brush

Joshua Messinger

Chris Bernardi

Jessica Bussard

Cynthia Short

Barb Stuebing

Walt Kloefkorn  Walt

Donald Gibson

Carol Waldenberg

Meghan Pinch

Scott Stucker

Luke Baumgarten

Alli Kingfisher

Stine Hansen

Kelly Lerner

Heather Svanidze

Kaaren Goeller-Bloom

Sarah Bain

Paul Main

Neil Andersen

Rick Hastings

Bradley Bleck

Jeannie Nelson

Lori Decicio

Eric Iannelli

Kate Burke

Steve Faust

Barb Chamberlain

Scott Jozefowski

Charlene Violette

Kelsi Swenson

Carol Bryan

John Speare

Mary Rosner

Noah Sutherland

Bradley Baysinger

Karen Momany

Ryan Patterson

Hunter Dehaven

William Kelley

James Baird

Travis Nichols

Nikki Follett

Paul Mutton

David Merriman

Josh Meckel

Rebecca Moore

Dev Brierley

Tim Ray

Erika Jacobs

Teresa Lien

David Jones

Katy Zemke

Mark Steward

Luke Bakken

Suzanne Vennard Halberstadt

Andrea Parrish

Bruce Steele

Travis Coleman

Bob Lutz

Jason King

Amy Lutz

Sam Waples

Patrick Sullivan

Philip Brunner

Eric Erickson

Michael Tonkyn

Steve George

Henry Dennewith

Ella Melik

Teri Koski

Glen Copus

Jon Kercher

Omar Akkari

Landon Crecelius

Marggy Burke

Ben Giese

Dan Siddoway

Luisa Gallagher

Russ Nobbs

Toni Pratt

Kelli Osborne

Robert Hemphill

Tim Hansen

Elaine Snouwaert

John Schram

Greg Stiles

Jack Siddoway

Jeff Hayward

Kathleen Chase

Nathan Duhnke

Chris Eichorst

James O’Hare

Shelley Williams

Charlie Greenwood

William Hulings

Aaron Aaron

Sarah Hayward

John Ragan

Kate Boston

Sandra Blackwell

Deborah Di Bernardo

Suzi Hokonson

Bryan Mahar

Ed Davis

Jonathan Hawkins

Brett Chambers

Shayna Begrovich

Tyler Salvage

Brenda Almquist

Jed Barden

Don Barden

Mark Henriksen

Seth Battista

Anna Jennings

Mariah Mckay

Charles Lehman

Erik Solberg

Liza Mattana

Eliza Hersh

Matt Hollon

Steve Mattson

Crystal Gartner

Graham Gunderson

Mitchell Crane

Joseph Lotrario

Heidi Lasher

Chris Voges

Roger Bosky

Rosemary Otto

Shane  Maggart

Lee Ann Greaves

Erika Prins

Julie Starling

Scott Arbuckle

Brian Wood

Marshall Powell

Amy Mccaffree

Tom Battista

Walter Galen

Rhonda Dundon

Jackie Caro

Tomas Lynch

Steve Simmons

Rachel Jordan

Dave Braun

Carla Chapman

Judy Gardner

April Bresgal

Patricia Danner

Tracy Mahuiki

Chad Kauppi

Anjaela Mertens

Polly Nobbs-Larue

Patricia Hansen

Bill Bender

Justin Poole

Charles Crawford

Alice Hostetter

Susan Hall

Andrew Baucom

M. Price

Kirsten Frost

Tabetha Neathery

Mike Petersen

Timothy Hansen

Ryan Traetow

Sally Lodato

Jim Lodato

Randall Gehlen

Jonathan Hawkins

Michael Raab

Eileen Hyatt

Nomi Martinson

Ann Martinson

Bonnie Sherar

Peggy Davey

 

 

Posted in Advocacy, Alert, Complete Streets, Issues & Advocacy, News, Spokane County, Transportation | 3 Comments