Monday, February 4, 2013

Advocacy in Action – Local Bicycle/Pedestrian Community Groups Making an Impact!

Two recent victories provided bold bike-friendly moves that will provide safer, more accessible bicycling infrastructure in the cities of Coronado and Encinitas. Over the last 12 months,  both of these cities joined the Cities of Oceanside, Chula Vista, Solana Beach, San Diego City Council District 2 and Bike SD in forming volunteer-based advocacy groups that work to make their respective communities better for all people who ride.  

The proof of the effectiveness of these groups was very evident at two recent City Council meetings. The City of Coronado, who is aiming to become a League of American Bicyclists designated "Bicycle Friendly City" recently approved the installation of 8 new, on-street bicycle parking corrals along their business district on Orange Avenue. Much of the heavy lifting that led to the Councils approval of the corrals came from the work of the Coronado Bicycle Advisory Committee. The group meets monthly to develop and implement programs and strategies that will improve bicycle safety and access in Coronado.

Similarly in Encinitas, the less formal (Coronado’s Committee is city appointed) but just as effective, Bike Walk Encinitas Committee has worked for several months to advocate for more bike-friendly infrastructure in the community of Leucadia. The resulting action from the Encinitas City Council was the approval of a lane reduction and addition of a new dedicated bike lane and Sharrows (bicycle road markings) along North Coast Highway 101 that will dramatically improve the safety for all who ride through Leucadia.

The SDCBC congratulates these groups and thanks them for their work on improving the conditions for bicyclists in their cities. The SDCBC, which recently reorganized its board and committee structure, will convene a new “Council of Community Committees” which will connect representatives from each of the groups to meet quarterly to network and share best practices.  The first meeting is expected to take place in early spring of 2013.

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