Annual Meeting Sun. Nov. 16 – Board Elections & Legislative Strategy

Join us Sunday, November 16, 1:30-3:30 PM for the Virginia Bicycling Federation Annual Meeting at the Richmond REI store, 2020 Old Brick Rd, Glen Allen, VA 23060.

We’re still finalizing the agenda, but the main business will be planning our strategy for the upcoming General Assembly session, which starts in January. We’ll also elect our own 2015 board and officers.

Is there an issue you’d like to see addressed at the state level? Bring it to us. Are you concerned about recent issues — a dooring bill, following bicyclists too closely, stopping for pedestrians (and cyclists) in crosswalks? Get the inside scoop on what’s going on, maybe even lend a hand.

All are welcome, but we do appreciate an RSVP: champe_burnley@hotmail.com

rvaMORE’s Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day, October 2014

On Saturday, October 4, 2014 rvaMORE held our 3rd. IMBA Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day. We hosted 25 kids and their parents on Belle Isle in the middle of the James River in Richmond Virginia.

rvaMORE’s purpose is to increase mountain bike access to the Richmond region. Over the past 10 years rvaMORE has built and maintained over 25 miles of trails in the city of Richmond. Events and assets like the Belle Isle Skills area and single track trails take dedicated volunteers and funds to build and maintain.

All of our programs are produced with donated funds and volunteer labor. We need your support to keep events like this happening. Please go to www.rvamore.org and donate to our Pay Pal link. Consider $25.00 per month.

Fairfax County Bike Master Plan Passes Unanimously; $100M Transpo Bond Issue Up for Vote

“17 speakers testified at the public hearing in support of the proposed plan. Only one person spoke in opposition. “By giving me [transportation] choices, you literally have changed my life” said Jenifer Joy Madden, a County resident speaking about connecting to new bus and Metro service in Tysons on bicycle.”

WABA has the story (Thanks Greg!), with more from FABB (Fairfax Advocates for Better Bicycling).

Also important is the $100M smart growth transportation bond issue for Fairfax County residents to vote on next Tuesday, Nov. 4. According to the Coalition for Smarter Growth, who endorse it:

“…Fairfax will be able to upgrade sidewalks, trails, and bike lanes; improve safety around schools; and make local spot improvements to roads throughout the county. These local investments will improve access to transit, schools, stores, parks, and libraries; and offer many other benefits, including:

  • A sustainable future: By providing more opportunities to walk and bike for daily trips, the projects will help reduce the amount we have to drive. With 1/3 of climate change pollution coming from transportation, this is an important way for Fairfax to fight climate change and improve the air we breathe.
  • Improved safety: The bond measure will support many pedestrian and bicycle projects in Fairfax County, including sidewalks, bike paths, and crossing signals. These investments, along with proposed turn lanes and signal improvements, will make county roads safer for all users.
  • Safe Routes to School: Approximately $17.5 million of the bond measure will pay for projects that make it safer for children to walk or bike to and from school. These projects will help reduce the growing traffic around our schools at arrival and dismissal, and even allow for high school students to walk or bike instead of driving.
  • A healthy Fairfax: Lack of physical activity is contributing to growing rates of obesity and obesity-related health problems, such as diabetes — even among our children. The walking and bicycling projects included in this bond measure will make it easier for children and adults to walk and bike to work, schools, stores, parks, and libraries, integrating healthy physical activity into our daily lives.”

So if you’re a Fairfax resident, make sure you get to the polls. If you have friends there, please share this with them and get them to the polls too.

Congrats to Fairfax County for passing their first bike master plan ever; and many thanks to the supremely competent and hard working bike advocates there who pushed get it done.

Updates


Fairfax County now has a Bicycle Master Plan – Update
(FABB)

City of Richmond Adopts Complete Streets Policy

City Administration begins development of guidelines for implementation

Richmond, VA – The City of Richmond achieved another milestone toward becoming a bike and pedestrian friendly city by adopting a Complete Streets Policy on October 13. Complete Streets is a transportation policy and design approach that helps make communities healthier, more livable, economically competitive and resilient. They are streets designed and operated to be safe, comfortable and convenient for all users regardless of age, ability or mode of travel.

Adopting a Complete Streets Policy was a recommendation of the Mayor’s Pedestrian, Bicycling and Trails Commission, the City’s RVAgreen Sustainability Plan, Richmond Connects and the Green City Commission. The policy outlines the design and construction standards for sidewalks, public ways and public rights-of-way and requires that City transportation improvement projects provide appropriate accommodations to promote safe usage for all users.

“The goal of the Complete Streets Policy is to balance the access, mobility and safety of all users while creating a stronger and healthier community,” said Mayor Dwight C. Jones. “City residents as well as those who come to the city to work and play will all benefit from safer roads, more transportation choices, increased mobility and reduced pollution.”

The City Administration is working to develop guidelines for implementing complete streets in the City of Richmond as required by the City’s Complete Streets Policy. As detailed in Resolution 2014-R172-170, the City Administration has 12-months to develop implementation guidelines and incorporate those into the City’s “Right-of-Way Design and Construction Standards Manual.”

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Download the PDF of this press release.

Richmond Women’s Cycling Summit, Thurs., Oct. 23

2014 Richmond Women's Bike Summit Flyer

Please share this with anyone who might be interested. Also see the event Facebook page and website.

RideRichmond will host the inaugural Richmond Women’s Cycling Summit on Thursday, October 23, 2014, at the Virginia War Memorial, Freedom Hall at 7:00pm. The goal of the summit is to empower women to ride bicycles and participate in their communities as riders and leaders, as well as bring the nationwide momentum of more women cyclists to Richmond. The event is co-sponsored by Richmond Area Bicycling Association (RABA) and Virginia Bicycling Federation (VBF). [click to continue…]

Please Take the VTrans 2040 Intermodal Transportation Survey

VTrans 2040

PotomacCyclist writes:

VTrans 2040 is the Commonwealth of Virginia’s long-range multimodal statewide (Commonwealth-wide?) transportation plan. Responses to the VTrans online survey will help to shape the long-term plans for Virginia. If you want to participate and let Virginia know how you feel about transportation planning, check out the survey. As an added incentive, they are holding prize drawings on Aug. 15, Sept. 15 and Oct. 15, for a $100 gift card.

But the primary purpose is to help shape transportation planning in Virginia. The survey takes less than 10 minutes.

https://www.research.net/s/vtrans

http://www.vtrans.org/about_us.asp

From their website: “The Office of Intermodal Planning and Investment is located within the Office of the Secretary of Transportation and was created in 2002 to encourage the coordination of multimodal and intermodal planning across the various transportation modes within the Commonwealth. Since then, the office has produced multiple statewide planning efforts, performance reports and collaborated with multiple entities to promote a safe, strategic and seamless transportation system.”

“The office now consists of 3 staff members and is supported by all the agencies involved in Virginia’s transportation system.”

It’s not a large organization like VDOT is, but there’s no downside (that I can see) to filling out the survey.

Spirit 76 Ride — Sat. Sept. 6 in Chesterfield

Spirit 76 Ride - Chesterfield County - proceeds support CCHASM

The Spirit 76 Ride supports CCHASM

The Chesterfield, Colonial Heights Alliance for Social Ministry invites you to join them on the Spirit 76 ride, a fully sagged and supported tour of scenic Chesterfield County, Saturday September 6 at the Bethia United Methodist Church, 10700 Winterpock Road, Chesterfield, Virginia 23832.

Choose from 76, 40, 25, and 25 mile family ride options, as well as 12.48 and 4.81 mile off-road options and Pocahontas State Park.

Riders who raise $250 via the fundraiser option will ride for free, and receive a $100 gift certificate from Agee’s Bicycles.

Of course there’s an after-ride pizza party! Each rider will receive two tickets to win door prizes.

Proceeds from the ride will benefit area residents through financial assistance for food, clothing, utilities and rent.

See the Spirit 76 Ride page for more information and to register.

National Interscholastic Cycling Association — A Junior Mountain Bike Racing League

Virginia-Interscholastic-Cycling-Assn-1

See www.Virginiamtb.org

It is an exciting time to be a cycling supporter in any capacity – as a rider, spectator, coach, or promoter. In Virginia, there are two big things that we have to look forward to. The first is that Virginia will host the best professional road riders in the world when the World Championships are held in Richmond in September 2015. The second is that Virginia is in the midst of developing a new junior interscholastic cycling program. [click to continue…]

VBF presents Del. McQuinn (D-Richmond) with Bike Friendly Award

Champe Burnley, Sheryl Finucane, Michael Gilbert, Del. Delores McQuinn, Bud Vye, and Tom Bowden -- presenting Del. McQuinn with VBF's Bicycling Friendly Award.

Champe Burnley, Sheryl Finucane, Michael Gilbert, Del. Delores McQuinn, Bud Vye, and Tom Bowden.

Virginia Bicycling Federation would like to thank Del. McQuinn (D-Richmond) for being the patron of HB 542, and Del. Gilbert (R-Shenandoah) for amending the verbiage of the bill to ensure its passage. This was the second year Del. McQuinn was the patron of the “mask” bill.

Before the bill was passed, it was illegal for a cyclist to wear a mask in the winter, and being found guilty of doing so would result in a felony. The law also affected those who would participate in winter sports (skiing, boating, others) as well as hunters – essentially anyone who might wear a mask to shield and protect them from the elements.

Bicycling is a non-partisan issue and we thank both delegates for their hard work on this bill to amend and modernize Virginia code.

If you had not heard, Del. McQuinn is running in a firehouse primary for Sen. Marsh’s seat in District 16 (link). If you are unsure if you are in this district, be sure to use the Who’s My Legislator? product to find out!

Three Foot Passing Law in Virginia Begins July 1

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Click the image to order these bumper stickers from Drive Smart Virginia.

Beginning July 1, Virginia’s roads will be safer with the adoption of a statewide three foot passing law. Current law requires that motorists pass people on bikes by only two feet.

The legislation was sponsored by Senator Bryce Reeves, R-Spotsylvania: “Our ability to be able to work across the aisle and build relationships in a bipartisan manner allowed us to successfully get this commonsense legislation approved. Those that are active in the bicycling community—as well as my Republican and Democrat friends in both the House of Delegates and the Senate—were all part of making this legislation possible. I will continue to work very hard on areas where we can find common ground and consensus for the people of Virginia.”

Thanks go out to Senator Reeves, and cyclists across the state for their emails, phone calls and meetings with legislators. A special thanks goes to the VBF legislative team headed by Bud Vye who has been working tirelessly for nearly ten years to get this law changed.

Download and read the press release (PDF).