AoB’s Public Statement on RADTIP Re-Design

June 21, 2017

TO: Asheville City Council, Gary Jackson, Cathy Ball, Ken Putnam, Steph Monson, Jade Dundas, Dan Baechtold
FROM: Mike Sule on behalf of Asheville On Bikes
CC:

Council and Staff –
I learned yesterday that the RADTIP project must be modified because of budget concerns and that you are considering the postponement of plans to build several critical pieces of infrastructure, including the protected bike lane along Lyman Street and the modifications to the railroad crossing near Smoky Park Supper Club. While disappointed, we recognize that some multi-modal facilities have to be cut. We hope the city will reaffirm its commitment to active transportation infrastructure in the future. AoB affirms that public safety is paramount to any RADTIP adjustments.

As you adjust priorities, public safety must be your primary criterion. The two pieces of infrastructure I just mentioned are vital to the future of the city and to public safety. If the Lyman Street bike lane and western sidewalk are removed, Asheville On Bikes (AOB) urges you to replace them with a multi-use path at least 16 feet in width, and lane markings to separate users. This design complies with FHWA standards, increases safety, and will support a high volume of bike and pedestrian traffic. Lyman St needs the best possible bike and pedestrian infrastructure that we can afford because it lies at the very heart of our future grid of connected greenways and bike lanes. The city should build active transportation infrastructure to standards that anticipate future use. The Swamp Rabbit and American Tobacco trails see 500,000+ users annually. RADTIP can anticipate similarly heavy use. Make it safe for all users and do not neglect this part of the plan. Frankly, it should have been built first.

Similarly, the railroad crossing near Smoky Park Supper Club is unsafe, it is a known hazard, and the city is failing to act to make it safe. It injures people every year. When you think about re-arranging funds, it is unconscionable to our membership that you would spend money anywhere in RADTIP without addressing these railroad tracks which are responsible for so many broken bones, concussions, and other injuries to your citizens. Addressing the public safety issue of this unsafe rail crossing cannot be delayed. Please make sure that a public safety fix which allows for safe cycling over or around the railroad crossing is included in your re-prioritization. Asheville on Bikes is a willing partner and is eager to assist the city as you address these concerns.

Sincerely,
Mike Sule

May is here, Volunteer! AoB hosts Tour de Fat & Strive Not to Drive


AoB is rolling urban cycling forward in May and you’re needed to assist with the pedalling. In the eleven years that we’ve been riding the city, this May is our most ambitious outreach to date. Are you ready to help us roll forward?

AoB is thrilled to announce that we’re partnering with New Belgium to host Tour de Fat on Saturday, May 20th following the annual Strive Not to Drive week. Below is a list of events with links to our volunteer forms. Please review the list and pick the event that works best for you.

Once again, I appreciate all that you do to roll AoB forward in our community. Let’s put the mission in motion this May.

Saturday, May 20th – Tour de Fat w/ Third Eye Blind at New Belgium
3:30pm – 10pm
Click Here to Volunteer
AoB seeks roughly 100 volunteers for the first annual Tour de Fat in Asheville. Tour de Fat is New Belgium’s festival that includes music, carnival acts, and great beer. Proceeds from the event support Asheville on Bikes. There are a variety of volunteer spots available for the day. Each shift it 3 hours in duration and includes a pass to the event. Simply click Volunteer Local and select the option that works best for you.

Friday, May 19th – Roll Outta Work
5:30pm – Gather at Pack’s Park
6:00pm – Pedal the Route
Click Here to Volunteer
Is there a better way to celebrate the end of the week than riding a bike? AoB doesn’t think so and we’re excited to launch our newest addition to our community rides as part of Strive Not to Drive Week. This ride gathers at Pack’s Park and meanders its way to New Belgium Brewing. If you’re interested in volunteering, click here.

Saturday, May 13th – Bright Light Biker @ Walkable Wall St
8:30pm – Gather on Wall St
9:00pm – Pedal the Route
Click Here to Volunteer
AoB is rolling out the red blinky lights for the kick-off of Strive Not to Drive Week with Walkable Wall St and the return of Bright Light Biker. Enjoy Wall St has a pedestrian district before hopping on the bike and participating in Bright Light Biker. If you’re interested in volunteering, click here.

Bike of the Irish 2017

Bike of the Irish rides Beaucatcher greenway

 

On Saturday, March 18th the 11th annual Bike of the Irish rolls through Asheville and you’re invited to participate.  The year the ride begins at Wedge at Foundation, Wedge Brewing Co’s new space located at 5 Foundry Rd, rolls through the River Arts District, into the downtown, and explores the Beaucatcher greenway  (in the rough) before returning to the Wedge for an after ride celebration around 3pm.

 

Bike of the Irish is Asheville on Bikes annual spring ride. Participants are encouraged to  decorate themselves and their bikes in green as they ride the city in celebration of spring and the expansion of Asheville’s greenway system.

The event is free and open to the public. Families are welcome to participate as well. Everyone is encouraged to review and / or pre-ride the route to make sure it’s appropriate for their skill level. The ride rolls through active city streets and an unimproved greenway so riders can expect a  stretch of natural rough service along the Beaucatcher greenway. Participants are welcome to walk their bikes along this portion of the ride. Beaucatcher is a greenway in the rough but it’s truly a delightful place to visit and well worth the effort.

 

Please consider volunteering for Bike of the Irish as several volunteers are needed to make the ride a success. Review the Bike of Irish volunteer opportunities and select the one that works best for you.   

 

Join AoB on Saturday, March 18th for the 11th annual Bike of the Irish.

 

Bike of the Irish Details:

1:30pm  – Gather at Wedge at Foundation

2:00pm – The ride begins

3:00pm – Culminate at Wedge at Foundation.  

 

Things to Consider:

Review the route before the ride.  

Know the weather before you ride.

Pack an extra layer, a warm afternoon cools quickly.

Spending money is a good idea.

A variety of beverages will be available, not just beer.

 

Bike Love ’17, Sat. Feb. 18th

Bike Love ‘17, presented by New Belgium Brewing, returns on Saturday, Feb. 18th to the Salvage Station. The event includes an early reception, a cycle-centric silent auction, a bicycle raffle, photo booth, and a wide variety of music. In other words, something for everyone.  

Stephanie Morgan, DJ Marley Carroll, and DJ Dr. Filth  provide the grooves to keep the passions pulsing throughout the night.

AoB currently seeks volunteers for several different position to support Bike Love. If you’re interested in investing a bit of time, talent, and elbow grease in exchange for a ticket, please review the volunteer options and pick the one that works best for you.

There are a few ways to enjoy Bike Love. Advance tickets can be purchased online:

  • Reception: This reception is  from 7pm – 8pm and includes a small bites, a New Belgium beer, and ‘17 AoB membership and general admission. Stephan Morgan will perform during the early reception.
  • General Admission & ‘17 AoB Membership: Renew or activate your annual membership for 50% off and secure your Bike Love ticket. Membership packets include AoB spoke card, helmet sticker, and membership welcome letter can be picked up at the event. Secure your ticket and activate your AoB membership. Robust membership help is a simple way to support AoB’s advocacy efforts.
  • General Admission: Keep it simple and secure your general admission ticket
  • Membership: Support AoB’s advocacy efforts and active your membership.   

The evening’s agenda is as follows:

Reception: 7pm – 8pm

General Admission Doors: 8pm

Silent Auction: 7pm – 11pm

Bike Raffle: 11pm

Music:

Stephanie Morgan: 7pm – 9pm

DJ Marley Carroll:   9:15pm – 12:30am

DJ Dr. Filth:  12:30am – 2am

AoB appreciates our annual sponsors: New Belgium Brewing, Mosaic Community Lifestyle Realty & JAG & Associates Construction, Mountain Air Roasting, Wedge Brewing Co, Industry Nine Components, Mellow Mushroom, Beauty Parade, Shelia Christofalos, Edward Jones, Clasique Acupuncture and Pilates Studio

AoB is Hiring Youth Bicycle Instructor

Ride your city w/ the next generation

AoB seeks a youth bicycle instructor for our youth bicycle education program in conjunction with  Asheville Middle School and Asheville City Schools Foundation. Qualified candidates should have prior experience working with youth, strong cycling skills, and a commitment to safe habits of riding. The potential instructor will need to pass a background check.

The spring semester runs from February 20th – May 19th. Bike Club  meets once a week for roughly 12 sessions. Instructors are asked to attend two to three meetings as well. Compensation is $500 / semester.To apply, complete the AoB Afterschool Instructor Application. Prepare responses to the following questions:

  1. What interests you in working with Asheville on Bikes’s youth cycling program?
  1. Describe your experience working with students. What was the age group and what were your responsibilities?
  1. If you could lead a group of students on a five mile ride of Asheville, where would you go and why?

Applications will be reviewed in the order they are received. Thank you for your interest in Asheville on Bikes youth cycling education.

 

2nd Hit & Run of AVL Cyclist in Nov.

The Asheville Police Dept. (AVLPD) seeks the community help in finding the motorist of a tan Toyota SUV who was involved in a hit and run on the the River Arts District (RAD) on Tuesday, Nov. 29th on Depot St. If you have any information on the motorist and/or witnessed the collision please contact AVLPD at 828 525 1110.

The cyclist who was hit is a 15 year old high school student who rides his bike from Asheville High to the RAD for art classes.  Allegedly, the motorist feigned calling the police, reported to the minor that the police wouldn’t attend to the scene, and then drove away leaving the minor alone.

In order to support AVLPD in contacting the motorist please share Asheville Citizen Times’ “Police search for driver in RAD hit and run with cyclist.” on your social media and share the story with your circles.

 

Let’s continue to work together to improve conditions for all people traveling by all modes in our community.