Monday, April 27, 2009

Transit Now Video - How to Ride MTA Bus

Transit Now, a group dedicated to raising awareness about the benefits of regional mass transportation in the Nashville Area, recently released a video about the ease of riding the MTA bus.

The video discusses purchasing fare cards, selecting routes and includes a demonstration of the bicycle racks featured on the front of every bus.

Click to view the video or to see the Transit Now website.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Sign up for the eNewsletter

The MPO is sending out periodic updates on the development of the Regional Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan through our new eNewsletter.

If you would like to receive the updates and find out about the progress of the plan, click here.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Green Ribbon Committee Report

Mayor Dean's Green Ribbon Committee presented a summary of the final report to Mayor Dean at a meeting last week. The Committee has been working for the past 9 months to develop a plan to make Nashville the greenest city in the Southeast.

Public input, including 1,800 responses to an online survey and over 300 attendees at five public meetings, guided the committee on creating the 16 goals and 71 action recommendations.

The overall goal for transportation is to have two forms of transportation available to citizens, provide a percentage of funding for bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure such as sidewalks and greenways, and provide educational classes for the public on bicycle safety.

Read the summary report here.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Bicycle Recycling Program Benefits Kids, Teaches Skills

From the Tennessean - Ms. Cheap, April 12, 2009

Wanted: used bicycles, any style, any size, any condition.

Oh, yeah. I love this literal ReCycling.

Here's the deal: A bike donation program has been organized by Oasis Center, Team Green and the ReCYCLE your Cycle initiative, with the new Halcyon Bike Shop leading the charge.
The idea is for Halcyon to conduct a series of bike repair workshops, where young people can learn how to work on bikes and actually earn a bike for themselves, according to Halcyon co-owner Elise Tyler.

"The (donated) bicycles are recycled, repaired and transformed into valuable vehicles for youth who are homeless or living in low-income areas,'' said Elise, who said the free workshops should crank up in late May at the new Oasis Center on Charlotte.

She says initially a group of about 20 young people (ages 11-21) from the Oasis neighborhood will serve as a test of the program — attending bike workshops three days a week through the summer, learning just about every aspect of repairing and maintaining bicycles as well as learning about bike safety, bike lanes, greenways and other aspects of the wonderful world of biking.

"After that we want to expand it into other neighborhoods. It's a very practical program," Elise said. "The kids (who will be the first workshop students) are so excited about it. It's really cool to see the energy. A lot of them are too young to drive, and even if they could drive they can't afford a car. This works on several practical levels — providing transportation and building skills and confidence.''

So if you have unwanted, unused bikes, just drop them off at Centennial Park's Earth Day festivities, Saturday at the Halcyon Bike Booth (there should be lots of signs.) They'll also take bike parts and accessories such as helmets, locks, air pumps, "just about anything bicycle related,'' says, Elise who noted that your donations are tax-deductible and promised that "the process will be quick and easy.''

"The bikes do not have to be in riding condition. Part of the program is that kids work on their bikes and fix them up, so it's fine if the bikes are not in riding condition,'' Elise said.

Halcyon, whose main business is to repair and sell used bikes, opened just before Christmas over on 12 South. Elise said she and her partner, Andrew Parker, "had wanted to do this (youth workshop) from the start — but it was just too much to do when we first opened the retail shop, so we put it off a few months. Then just as we were thinking about it again, Oasis contacted us about us doing a bike workshop. And we said, 'well, yeah, that's exactly what we'd like to do.' ''
Isn't it great when things just work out like that? I just love it.

Oh, and if you can't get your unwanted bikes to Centennial Park on Saturday, just take them to the Halcyon Bike Shop, at 1118 Halcyon Ave., whenever you can and tell them you want to donate them to the youth workshop.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Federal Policy - Complete Streets

Photo courtesy of Rickard Drdul


Complete Streets are streets that are designed for the safety and convenience of all transportation users, including bicyclists.

The Complete Streets Act of 2009 was introduced in both houses of Congress on Thursday, March 12. Senator Harkin (IA) sponsored S. 584 with Senator Carper (DE) as original cosponsor. In the House, Congresswoman Matsui (CA-5) sponsored H.R. 1433 with Representatives Tauscher (CA-10), Maloney (NY-14), and Wu (OR-1) as original cosponsors.

The Complete Streets Act of 2009 defines effective complete streets policies that are flexible enough to use in daily transportation planning practice. The introduction of these bills is a key step in ensuring safer, better-designed streets across the country. Organizations from the YMCA to the National Association of Realtors have lined up behind the measure, because they see the benefits complete streets will provide on issues ranging from the obesity epidemic to greenhouse gas reduction to providing inexpensive transportation alternatives in tough economic times.
Click here to learn more about Complete Streets.
Information provided by Smart Growth America.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Share the Road - Motorcycle and Bicycle Awareness Event

Sharing the Road applies to motorists who share the road and are observant of both motorcycles and bicycles.

The annual Share the Road event on May 2nd, sponsored by the Motorcycle Awareness Foundation of Tennessee (MAFT) and the Governor's Highway Safety Office, is the traditional kick-off of the motorcycle season in Middle Tennessee.

This year, the bicycling community will be participating. We'll have a bicycle rodeo for kids, a Bicycle Street Smarts class for adults, plus educational materials for everyone.
Please join us to a fun day of activities and education. May 2, 2009 from 10am-1pm at the Bumpus Harley Davidson dealership on Broad Street in Murfreesboro, TN.

Click here for the event flier. If you would like to learn more, please email

Motorcyclists and bicyclists together can work for safer roadways for everyone!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Bicycle and Pedestrian Survey

The MPO Regional Bicycle and Pedestrian Survey is still ongoing, however staff has compiled some preliminary results:

Almost 1,700 participants have filled out the survey

Most respondents live and work in Davidson County (Nashville)

39% live within a reasonable walking or bicycling distance from work (0-5 miles)

40% of households have students

25% bicycle to work at least once a month

49% walk to errands at least once a month

Lack of facilities, traffic, and driver behavior are the most common reasons for not walking or bicycling more often.

More facilities, connections between facilities and with other modes, and education were sited as the most important improvements that can be made for walking and bicycling.

With these improvements, the majority of respondents said they would be more likely to walk or bicycle to work, shop, eat out or go to the park.

Click here to view the summary of survey responses.