Posts Tagged ‘Texas’
As I’ve mentioned before, my favorite class to teach is helping adults learn to ride. It is by far the most rewarding for me.
One thing that I’ve learned, teaching this class, is that people are different, so some pick it up faster than others. There are times when students need to return for another class to continue their training. This weekend’s class, however, did really well and all were riding to some degree. All were able to leave the class knowing enough of the fundamental skills, so that they can continue their training at home.
I also discovered that switching up coaches during the class, allows the students to get a fresh perspective on their progress.
My hope is that, the more I teach this class, the more I will be able to anticipate and address each student’s individual needs.
My local bike advocacy group, BikeDFW, was asked to share a tent at the Big D Bicycle Village, which was part of the Untapped Festival in Dallas. Although it wasn’t a bicycle event, it would be attended by plenty of like-minded, bike friendly people. We thought it would be a great opportunity to get some good exposure outside of our normal circle of influence. Plus, they let us host the table for free – which allows us to better optimize our resources.
The event was extremely successful with a great crowd of beer and music enthusiasts. Although we didn’t grow our membership, we did a great job of increasing our awareness.
Dallas needs to have more events like this.
Here are some pics from the event. Click here to see the set.
Here BikeDFW board member, Alan tests out a Buffalo Bike.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Update: Apologies. I had the map set to private. It should be visible, now.