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Posts Tagged ‘Texas

Recap And Pics From Last Weekend’s Bicycling Skills 123 Class

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Bicycling 123 - Allen, TX - October 2014

Last weekend, BikeDFW was asked to help out a local Boy Scout troop earn their merit badge in cycling, so we held a Bicycling Skills 123 clinic in Allen, Texas. Not only did we have the opportunity to teach some great kids, but also their parents. We wanted to leave this group with some good bicycle knowledge, so that the whole family can work together to ride safely. I feel that if the parents are safe riders, the kids will pick that up from them.

It was great to see the progress these kids have made, especially since many of them couldn’t even ride a few weeks ago. They were part of our successful learn to ride program.

It was also great to have three new League Cycling Instructors to help teach the class. Two of them came from Fort Worth, which is quite a distance from Allen.

Here are a few pics from the class.

Bicycling 123 - Allen, TX - October 2014

Bicycling 123 - Allen, TX - October 2014

Bicycling 123 - Allen, TX - October 2014

Bicycling 123 - Allen, TX - October 2014

Written by dickdavid

October 28, 2014 at 5:55 am

My Ride To Dallas City Hall

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Down Main Street

For the past few years, local bike advocacy group, Bike Friendly Oak Cliff, has hosted a month long bike event called Cyclesomatic. One part of that event is the Bike to City Hall ride – which always happens on a work day, early in the morning. I’ve always wanted to participate in this ride, but couldn’t find the time to bike into Dallas from my house in Richardson, then back out to my job in Carrollton.

Finally, on their sixth year, I made the time. I saw a post on Facebook that a local cyclist friend was riding down early that morning to catch the event. I checked my calendar and workload, and for once, my morning was meeting and deadline free. I decided to join him.

We met up at a local shopping center in Richardson at about 6:00 am., when it was still dark and I was still half asleep. Most of the ride through town was before rush hour and traffic was pretty light. The great thing about riding into downtown Dallas from Richardson, is that most of the route is multi-purpose trail. Once we hit the Cottonwood Creek Trail, it was just a matter of jumping onto the White Rock Creek Trail then the Santa Fe Trail – which takes us mostly into downtown Dallas.

Overall, we rode about 25 miles in about an hour and a half – a slow but fun pace. I really enjoyed the view of White Rock Lake, just before the sun came up.

BFOC Guys

Meet Up At Main Street Park

We met up with many other riders at Main Street Park. After hanging out for a bit and taking a few pictures, the whole group – including some Dallas City Council members – headed out for a really slow paced ride to Dallas City Hall. This was obviously a ride to make a statement. As we rolled safely through the morning, rush hour traffic, there were lots of waves to and from our parade of two-wheeled advocates.

Main Street Dallas

Main Street Dallas

When we arrived at Dallas City Hall, the whole group gathered outside to listen to a presentation from the City Council members who rode with us, as well as a few other city officials. Our new, local advocacy group, The Dallas Bicycle Coalition, even go a special recognition certificate for all of their efforts.

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Parked At City Hall

Bike To City Hall Presentation

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Overall it was a great morning, and I hope to do this ride again. Here are a few more pics from the event. Click here to see the entire set.

Dallas Bike Riders

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Written by dickdavid

October 24, 2014 at 5:41 am

Bicycle Ride And Seek – Photo Scavenger Hunt 2014 – Richardson, TX

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Since last year’s Scavenger Hunt was such a great success, I decided to do it again this year.

Introducing Richardson’s 2nd Annual Ride And Seek, Photo Scavenger Hunt. From mid-October to mid-November, I’m inviting and motivating folks to get out and ride their bikes, explore their neighborhoods and win prizes!

This year’s theme will be “The Bike Racks of Richardson”.

My local advocacy group, Bike Friendly Richardson, is working with the City of Richardson to gather data on the current inventory of available bicycle parking throughout the city. I thought this would be a fun way to involve the bike community and collect valuable information that will help make my city more bike friendly.

If you happen to be in north Texas this month, I encourage you to participate. Click here for details.

PRIZE SPONSORS:
RBM_300

Alamo_300

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Watch Out For Road Hazards

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Watch Out

 

I saw this on Alma Road in Plano, Texas, the city that neighbors mine. I’m not sure if this was painted by the city or by a concerned citizen, but it definitely caught my eye. Unfortunately, with it’s placement right next to the actual hazard, so it’s too late to do anything to avoid it.

Perhaps the city of Plano will fix this road soon, because it’s one of the best routes for cyclists into town.

Written by dickdavid

July 9, 2014 at 5:49 am

New Bike Lanes Along Collins Boulevard – Richardson, Texas

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Collins Bike Lane

Heading East From Alma Road

Thanks to Bruce, over at the Bike Friendly Richardson Facebook page, for spotting the new Bike Lanes on the eastern section of Collins Boulevard – in my city: Richardson, Texas. Although not complete, lacking ‘bike’ markings on the pavement and ‘bike lane’ signage, they are ready for riding. Eventually, these bike lanes will continue east, right into my neighborhood, where more bike lanes are scheduled. Unfortunately, the bike lanes will not continue west, right now, and connect to the other bike lanes on the western section of Collins.

I got word from the City of Richardson‘s Asst. Director of Development Services, Transportation and Traffic, Dave Carter, who reports:

This Bike Lane will connect from Alma all the way to Jupiter. The portion east of Plano Rd is being paid for with Safe Route To School (SRTS) funding. The western half is Richardson funding. We wanted to get it all done at the same time. There is a new trail that will be going in adjacent to the Apartments under construction that will connect from Alma down to Greenville. There is also trail along Alma that will lead down to the Arapaho DART station so getting this Bike Lane in now really connects quite a few projects.

As for the Collins bridge over US75 – we don’t have enough funding to make all the improvements we need yet. However, we will be adding some “Bikes may use Full Lane” signs and sharrow markings across the bridge for now.

With these new Bike Lanes as well as the recent extension of the DART Central Trail, it’s really great to see the Richardson Bike and Pedestrian Plan actually getting built out.

From a personal perspective, I ride down this part of Collins, almost every time I ride. The traffic is usually very light and having it three lanes in each direction, made it very accessible for me – even without bike lanes. My first thought was that these bike lanes might be overkill for this road. I was completely wrong.

First, having these bike lanes opens this section of Collins Boulevard for many, less confident, cyclists who would never attempt to ride on this road. This creates a great connection between east Richardson neighborhoods and the Central Trail. Also, it wasn’t until I actually rode the bike lanes, before I realized how much more relaxed I am riding down Collins. This has become a great upgrade to my commute.

Collins Bike Lane

Heading West From Plano Road

As you can see from the map we’ve made of completed bike lanes, the City of Richardson is doing a great job at making bike connections all around town.

RichardsonBikeLanes_early2014

 

Update: Apologies. I had the map set to private. It should be visible, now.

Written by dickdavid

June 8, 2014 at 7:57 am

Pics From The 2014 Richardson WildRide!

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Ride Out

This is my fifth year to participate in Methodist Health System’s WildRide! Against Cancer. Unlike last year, when I rode the 64 mile route with my buddy and barely made it, I opted to go easy and just do the 40 mile route (Well, with the new starting point this year, it was only 38 miles). The day was beautiful and the wind a little forgiving, which made this year’s rally one of the better ones for me.

Like with every WildRide, I keep promising myself that I’m going to get a new bike that’s lighter and not so mechanically challenged. Instead, I keep riding the only geared bike that I own – my 21-year old DiamondBack Apex mountain bike that’s been converted to a commuter. It’s heavy, the wheels wobble and the original drivetrain is showing it’s age. But, like the previous 4 WildRides and dozens of commutes to work, it gets me to where I need to go – even if I have to work a little harder.

Pre-Ride

As I stated earlier, this year’s rally started at a new location. It was still close to my house, so I opted to ride my bike the 4 miles to the rally. The new staging area was nice, but didn’t seem as well organized. I’m sure it’s just growing pains and getting used to the new place.

The starting lineup is usually much longer, giving room to all the cyclists who are planning on riding the 64 mile route – which is probably 75 percent, leaving the remaining lineup space for the 40 and 16 mile group. This year, it seemed to be the reverse, which left about 25 percent of the space for the lead group and a lot more for the rest. This forced many cyclists to cram together at the front, some waiting on the sidewalk and on the road median. Quite frankly, the rally always starts out slow for everybody, so it doesn’t really matter where you start.

Lineup

Lineup

Lineup

Other than the awkward, overly-crowded start, the rally was really nice. The 40 (I mean 38) mile route was mostly the same with the typical rest stops, and riding over the Lavon Lake dam is always spectacular. Since I rode solo, this year’s ride was a bit lonely. Also, even though it wasn’t going to be as hard as last year’s 64 mile route, I think I had underestimated this year’s ride. I had forgotten that the 38 mile route was still a challenge for me, and it caught my legs off guard for the last few miles. I completed the route, but that 4 mile ride back to my house was miserable.

Here are a few pics of this year’s rally. Click here to see the entire set.

Pre-Ride

Lineup

Start

Ride Out

Ride Out

Ride Out

Ride Out

Rest Point At The Dam

Ride Back

Written by dickdavid

May 23, 2014 at 5:56 am

My Neighborhood Gets Safe Routes To School

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Lone Mongoose on Bike Rack

A few years back, my city was awarded federal funding through a Safe Routes to School grant from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) for two schools in Richardson: Richland Elementary and Yale Elementary. Yale Elementary happens to be part of my neighborhood.

Safe Routes To School In Richardson

It’s finally getting implemented and is scheduled to be complete next month. According to the SRTS plan (pdf), we will be getting:
• Barrier-free curb ramps
• Sidewalks (repairs and missing links)
• School crosswalk and signage upgrades
• Bike lanes
• Bike routes (I’m not sure what they mean by this)

They are already working on the sidewalks and barrier-free curb ramps in my neighborhood, Yale Park. It’ll also be nice to get the bike lanes, which will help calm the car traffic through the neighborhood streets, create more awareness for bicycling and encourage more people to ride. The new lanes through my neighborhood will start to connect the bike lanes in the Duck Creek neighborhood, just south of us, to the bike lanes on Collins Blvd, a few miles to the west. There will still be a gap on Collins.

ADA Corners

The original information about our Safe Routes To School grant had mentioned bike racks for the schools, but they aren’t on the current proposal (pdf). That either means there wasn’t enough funds or ‘Bike routes’ listed above is a typo, and we are still getting them.

I’m glad that I live in a city that works hard to get grants like this. This is a big win for Richardson and I hope to see more developments that improve safety and encourage more active transportation.

Written by dickdavid

April 4, 2014 at 5:12 am

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