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Vision Zero? More Like Nightmare 48. Recap of WNYC’s Reporting on Traffic Fatalities

Last week WNYC radio launched several journalistic endeavors into a surge of traffic fatalities that has been plaguing the citizens of NYC and newly instated mayor DeBlasio who has committed to #visionzero, a title for an initiative to reduce all traffic deaths to zero.

In only two and half months of 2014 there have [...]

Is It Ok To Kill Articles That Get It All Wrong About Cyclists?

Quite often I get these emails and texts from people alerting me of an article I should read about cycling. Often it’s from a credited publication like the NY Times so naturally it peaks my interest. Turns out, 9-10 times the op-ed or discussion is about some out-of-touch person who really doesn’t like biking and probably shouldn’t even be writing an article that does nothing for the activity but rather makes cycling hating drivers feel justified for their road rage or cycling enthusiasts defend themselves for their choice of transportation. As one of the laters I often feel obligated to chime in since the article itself is getting attention and it’s my job to help defend cycling. Luckily most of the time the arguments are weak, so my job is made easy. It’s also quite baffling how these people are given the word space, especially with the current state of publishing in the digital age.

I’m actually quite hungry for honest debate about whether cycling is a legitimate form of transportation but instead I get this:
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The latest comes from some guy named Daniel Duane from San Francisco who was fortunate to have his opinions published in the New York Times on Sunday.

Is It Ok To Kill Cyclists?
Right away, Duane illustrates my point about being a hater with a description of himself: “SAN FRANCISCO — EVERYBODY who knows me knows that I love cycling and that I’m also completely freaked out by it.”

Ah, that’s funny cause I know a lot of writers on the subject of cycling and somehow, I’ve never heard of you…must be a West Coast thing. Next he says:

Duane: “I got into the sport for middle-aged reasons: fat; creaky knees; the delusional vanity of tight shorts. Registering for a triathlon, I took my first ride in decades.”

I’m not sure a triathlon is the best place to start cycling…seems a bit extreme, how about just going to get a delicious burrito in the Mission or a leisurely cruise across the Golden Gate bridge.

Duane: “Wind in my hair, smile on my face, I decided instantly that I would bike everywhere like all those beautiful hipster kids on fixies. Within minutes, however, I watched an S.U.V. hit another cyclist, and then I got my own front wheel stuck in a streetcar track, sending me to the pavement.”

Yeah it’s called learning how to operate a vehicle, just like when you stalled in traffic on one of those hills trying to learn how to drive a stick shift. Oh the embarrassment.

The rest of this op-Ed goes on to point out how easy it is for cyclists to get killed by automobiles with little or no criminality attributed to the driver. Now being killed by a car for learning how to love cycling is a very hard lesson to swallow.

I don’t want to belabor over the East Coast vs West Coast thing, but really. One of my Co-Author of the book we did as a travel guide for biking in NYC, (bikenycthebook) Marci Blackman would often talk about biking in San Francisco where she lived for a long time. She would say she felt way more safe in NYC and that in SF the drivers have much more space to speed and how cyclists are treated much more as just being in the way. After all, just cause it’s up North and the birthplace of free lovin hippies, it’s still car culture America, California.

Continue reading Is It Ok To Kill Articles That Get It All Wrong About Cyclists?

New Yorkers must learn to share…Bike Share. Citibike launches for annual members.

Oh the sacrifices we New Yorkers have had to make under three terms of Mayor Bloomberg. First we had to give up smoking in public places and not being able to light up at your favorite rock venue. Ok, we can deal with that, besides now we have these sneaky electronic cigarettes that plug [...]

Tacks and Tickets, another ride in NYC

It’s hard enough taking the challenge of cycle commuting here in “The Big City.”

Somedays we have to deal with angry people who place tacks on our pathways.

Take for instance, last week when owner of Samurai Messenger Company and 13 year veteran messenger, Joshua Weitzner makes this chilling find on the 59th St. [...]

21 cyclists killed last year, yet only two motorist arrests

Reporter Alex Goldmark, from transportationnation.org does an investigative piece on the pitfalls of pursuing criminal charges against motorists who kill cyclists in NYC and the cultural landscape that is often too quick to blame the victim.

Killed While Cycling: Why So Few Fatal Bike Crashes Lead to Arrest in NYC By: Alex Goldmark Published: [...]

Bike sharing coming to NYC

The big news last week was New York City is going to be the next American city to begin a bike sharing program. 10,000 bikes will be placed on the street at 600 solar powered stations. This is another effort by the incredibly bike friendly D.O.T. to give more space to bicycles and increase [...]

Hottest for Fashion week?-Bicycles, duh.

Today starts fashion week in NYC, runways, paparazzi, those giant white tents that morph Bryant Park into a swarming madhouse of designers, photographers and models-all displaying the latest looks for fall. Bikes are getting into the act and this time in a positive way, unlike Donna Karen’s orange fiasco a few years ago.

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Crowd sourcing tickets

Not necessarily an original idea, crowd sourcing and mapping the tickets being handed out to cyclists, but Transportation Nation the blog by WNYC transportation reporter Andrea Berstein is getting into the game.

Hey, the more the better, and maybe this will lead to good press about a bad harassment campaign by the NYPD.

More [...]

Battle of the Bike Lane, Joel Epstein and more.

Joel Epstein is a reporter who’s covers bike related issues.

Here is his latest article in Huff Post, talking about our local politicians tone-deafness towards real sustainable change and the battle over a bike lane.

The Bike Lane Battle of the Bulge By: Joel Epstein Communications and public affairs professional and urbanist Posted: February [...]