Welcome to the first Cyclegram of 2012. This year will bring some big changes to the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia as we build upon the big leaps in bicycling that our region made in 2011.
We are also improving the way we share with you the latest news and events. This and future Cyclegrams will be shorter and more timely - a short digest of bicycling news every other week which you don't need to set aside a chunk of time to read.
Thanks for following the Bicycle Coalition and making our rides better!
An Update On The Ben Franklin Bridge Ramp
The campaign to build a bicycle-friendly ramp on the Camden side of the Ben Franklin Bridge continues.
Earlier this month, we worked with the Tri-State Transportation Campaign to obtain 1,000 online signatures, a joint letter from Senators Lautenberg and Menendez, and letters from 19 local businesses, organizations and institutions (including Campbell's Soup, AARP New Jersey and Rutgers-Camden). All these letters support the ramp, and we presented them to DRPA's Finance Committee on January 11th.
Where things stand now: DRPA Board Commissioner Jeffrey Nash and DRPA staff have been tasked with investigating outside funds which could be used to pay for the ramp. They are to report to DRPA on February 1st.
A Little Signage Goes A Long Way
Developments In Philly's Bicycling Infrastructure
Philadelphia has been investing in its visual bicycling signage, and 2012 should see significant implementation two programs: directional bicycling signs, and sharrows.
Directional Bicycling Signs
Typically, directional signage is installed by transportation agencies. Philadelphia is benefiting from an innovative collaboration between the Dept. of Public Health and the Planning Commission. Those departments are spearheading the installation of more than 400 directional bike signs across the city.
The directional signs reinforce the current bicycling network, emphasize connections between green space, and may introduce residents to nearby routes they were unaware of. We talked to Clint Randall from Get Healthy Philly on our blog about the program. More than 150 have been fabricated and installed thus far.
|Bicycling directions at 13th & Pine; a sharrow on 15th St below Spruce|
Philadelphia is also installing sharrows on many heavily-bicycled streets (Main Street in Manayunk and 15th Street being two examples). Unfortunately, their installation has not been coupled with a public education campaign about what the symbols mean, leading to some confusion. Still, the Mayor's Office of Transportation sees benefits to the low-cost signage, so we are expecting more to be installed in 2012.
Both the directional signage and the sharrows mark Philadelphia's continuing improvement as a bicycle-friendly city. Parking and street signage are basic communication tools from City to street users. These initiatives are a tangible and lasting gesture that Philadelphia views itself as a place to ride a bike.
Pennsylvania Safe Passing Bill Inches Closer To Vote
|The Safe Passing Bill (HB 170) was placed on the PA Senate calendar for a vote on Tuesday, January 17th. Unfortunately, it has been put off and put off.|
Presently, it is scheduled for a vote on Monday, January 23rd.
The bill requires motorists to give cyclists four feet of room when passing. This will make PA more bicycle friendly and assign culpability to motorists who cause a crash by buzzing, grazing or striking a cyclist while passing.
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Philadelphia, PA 19102