Newsletter

Bike/Walk Central Florida Newsletter #91 — April 12, 2013

Bike/Walk Central Florida
LOCAL News

Change of Seasons

Thank you, friends and members of the Central Florida bicycling and walking community. It has been a pleasure to serve these past three years as the founding director of Bike/Walk Central Florida. Just as physicians promise to “do no harm,” I think we, as an organization, have always endeavored to advocate in a way that has advanced the cause of biking and walking for fun, fitness and transportation, without getting mired in the sometimes thorny issues that can sidetrack or divide a community of strong-willed and motivated change agents.

Since we started, we have made significant strides toward making our trail designers in Orange County aware of the dangers of bollards, to the point that they have committed not to use them on any future trail designs and to replace them, as practical on the West Orange Trail.
We have raised more than $500,000 for a grassroots effort to reduce pedestrian deaths and injuries by 50 percent over five years and helped build significant momentum for connecting our various recreational trails as part of Florida Greenways & Trails’ Close the Gaps initiative. We have supported the efforts of other wonderful groups, such as Healthy Central Florida, and The Children’s Safety Village, WalkSafe, and Safe Streets West Orange. And we have built a formidable coalition of community leaders, law enforcement and concerned citizens, who share our common concern for public safety and more livable, walkable communities.

Today, in Orlando, cars are three times more likely to yield to a pedestrian at an uncontrolled crosswalk because of our efforts. Children grades K-5 now benefit from enhanced pedestrian education curriculum, and hundreds of thousands of Central Florida residents have heard our message of “I Yield For Pedestrians.” Our local media is now well-versed in the fine points of pedestrian safety, and in recent weeks media coverage has taken on a life of its own, with reporters for the Orlando Sentinel, WESH-TV Channel 2, Central Florida News 13, and WMFE 90.7 FM taking initiative to do unsolicited series on the the topic.

City and County traffic engineers – especially in the City of Orlando, Orange County and the cities of Winter Park and Maitland – have been enthusiastic supporters, as have our friends at both the Orlando Police Department and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. MetroPlan Orlando has not only been a funding partner, but produced a comprehensive pedestrian safety action plan and moved pedestrian safety to the top of its agenda. Orange County Public Schools has embraced our WalkSafe partner program. International Drive, Orlando Health, and Lynx, have all rallied to the cause. And where would we be without our founding sponsor, the Winter Park Health Foundation.

As far as we have come, we have so much farther to go:

We have been working with Orlando Health and OPD to get more timely death and injury data.

We are working on a new pedestrian-focused ad campaign tentatively called “Can You See Me Now?”

More needs to be done to increase driver yielding on roads posted 40 mph and higher.

We need to expand our already considerable community outreach.

We need to work more closely with FDOT to achieve our mutual goals.

We need to perfect our plan in Orange County and expand to surrounding communities.

We need to rally similar support for the Close the Gaps trail initiative.
And we need to continue to campaign for streets designed to accommodate the needs of all users, not just cars.

Bike/Walk Central Florida is on solid ground. We are fully funded and hitting on all cylinders. With all systems go, it is time for me to turn over the reins to new management, to build on the firm foundation we’ve built and take it to the next level. I have been blessed with a successful family business that now demands my full attention. I leave comfortable in the knowledge that the organization is in good hands. Best of luck. And all best wishes for your future success.

Best regards,

Brad Kuhn

Director

Bike/Walk Central Florida

Brad Kuhn

Founder/CEO

Brad Kuhn & Associates, LLC

11 N. Summerlin Ave., Suite 210, Orlando, FL 32801

(407) 412-5980

[email protected]

BWCF Here, There and Everywhere!

Bike/Walk Central Florida staff and volunteers manned the Bike Valet at the Winter Garden Bike Fest and Criterium on April 6th. Over 5000 people enjoyed the daylong festivities and 120 cyclists took advantage of the Bike Valet service. On Monday, April 8th Bike/Walk Central Florida participated in the Dori Slosberg Foundation Survive the Drive at UCF. Bike/Walk will also set up and man the Bike Valet at the Earth Day Celebration at Lake Eola on April 20th.  Stop by our table, park your bike, visit and even volunteer it you can!

 

OTHER News

Save the Date!

Brush off your bike bags, pump up the tires and get ready to join the morning traffic of…..bikes! Friday, May 3rd is Bike to Work Day.

AND…

The Florida Bicycle Association website has a new Touring Calendar page with events, in Florida and elsewhere. Click here to check it out.

Here is a short vintage bicycle montage…..fun!

Ten Best Bicycle Jokes here. Number ten is a Mark Twain witticism!

ALSO…

If you are too young to have seen this movie, here is a movie trailer to entice you. If you were around in 1979, ricordare e gustare!

Graphic artist Mike Joos of Maryland has several series of bicycle prints. This one comes from his Superheroes series. Joos also has used Star Wars characters and famous artists in other series.Click here  for more Superhero images.

UPCOMING EVENTS 

April 20 – Earth Day at Lake Eola

Click here for details.

April 20-21– Bike MS Citrus Tour

Click here for details.

May 3– Bike to Work Day

Click here for details.

RESOURCES

Bicycle Parking Map

From our friends at Commute Orlando: Peter Martinez has created a collaborative Bike Parking map, designed to help Bicyclists plan their routes and park their bikes on secure racks, rather than a stop sign or a tree.  Read more . . . 

Operation Best Foot Forward

Best Foot Forward is a community-wide coalition formed to reduce pedestrian deaths and injuries in Metro Orlando.The five-year initiative is currently focused on Orange County and will expand into Seminole and Osceola counties as resources permit. Five cities, two towns, and Orange County have passed resolutions supporting the initiative. Orlando Police Department, Orange County Sheriff’s Office, Florida Highway Patrol, police agencies in Winter Park, Maitland and Eatonville, and police chiefs from throughout Orange County, have pledged their support to the initiative, launched by Bike/Walk Central Florida and the Florida Bicycle Association, with financial support from the Winter Park Health Foundation, MetroPlan Orlando, Orange County, City of Orlando, Florida Department of Transportation, Orlando Police Department, Orange Cycle, David’s World Cycle, and Track Shack.

When was the last time you saved a life?  Your contributions of $5, $10, $20, $50, $100, or more, can make a big difference. Checks should be made out to the Florida Bicycle Association, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and mailed to: Betsy Holl at: P.O. Box 916715, Longwood, FL  32791-6715. Please specify that you are donating to Best Foot Forward.

Community Calendar Link 

  http://commuteorlando.com/wordpress/community-calendar/

RECURRING RIDES 

  • First Fridays: Take it to the Streets: bike ride to promote civility: 6 p.m. on the First Friday of each month (Upcoming Dates: May 3, 2013 and June 7, 2013). 
  • UCF Bike Bus: Downtown Orlando to UCF, then UCF to Downtown Orlando. Follow bike bus in real time via GPS at http://commuteorlando.com/bikebus/
  • Ride With Steve: Beginner ride. Meet at Winter Garden Wheel Works in Downtown Winter Garden, 8 a.m., Saturdays. – Sponsored by Winter Garden Wheel Works  .
  • Sunday Ride in the Hills: Ride 30-plus miles through the hills of Clermont and Minneola, Sundays mornings at 7am, beginning at David’s World Cycle in Winter Garden. Call Ross at 407-654-7071 to confirm.

See our Community Calendar for other family rides: www.bikewalkcentralflorida.org

 

  • Unless specifically designated as a trail ride, our rides take place on public streets. Headlights and red rear flashers are required for night rides. Helmets are encouraged, and are required by law for children under 16.
  • We observe all traffic laws and traffic signals.
  • Our rides are typically 10 to 15 miles, roundtrip, and average 10 miles an hour, a comfortable pace for most adults and teens. May be too fast for younger children and adults with health issues.
  • These rides are social in nature.

For longer, more challenging group rides, subscribe to Hal Downing’s group ride newsletter by emailing [email protected] 

If you have a social ride you would like us to help promote, please email our new director at the address below.

Amanda Day,

[email protected]

Bike/Walk Central Florida Would like to thank our sponsors:

 

 

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