Bike Friendlier Cities – a greener commute?

April 16, 2009 at 5:52 pm Leave a comment

My own home town, Long Beach California has mad a commitment to become friendlier and certainly more accessible to folks who would like to use their bikes to get around.

While our fair city is far from perfect yet and we still have a long way to go, let’s look at some of the steps already taken in this admirable quest.  First they have a plan and even better it is on public display on a pretty good website (http://bikelongbeach.org/).

The plan includes new bike lanes targeted for specific areas and uses, like schools, the installation of over 400 new bike racks so far, with more coming and a bike sharing plan for city employees to use a pool of bikes to move about the city to meetings and such.

Even more exciting are the support of the Bikestation (http://www.bikestation.com/longbeach/index.asp). Excerpt: “The first facility of its kind in the U.S., Bikestation Long Beach is strategically located on the First Street Transit Mall, a nexus for light rail, buses, pedestrians, and a local shuttle that services neighborhoods and key attractions. Nearby, more than 30 miles of dedicated shoreline and river bicycle paths, as well as Class II paths (routes accommodating both bicycles and cars), connect to other parts of the city.

In speaking to city officials about this I find it amazing that it isn’t happening elsewhere in Southern California as it hasn’t cost so much that it breaks the bank, even in these challenging times.

I also came across another pretty neat item that I am certainly going to suggest to the city. It is a solar powered bike storage device that stores the bikes 15 feet above the ground and allows access through a smart card system. The story on Ecofriend (http://www.ecofriend.org/entry/eco-gadgets-solar-powered-bike-tree-values-your-green-ride/) tells more about these devices recently showcased by Sanyo.  No word on price but they look of a size and configuration that would be easily deployable around the perimeter of parking lots throughout the city or at the local mall.

bike-tree_chzza_69


As always I thank you for your time and interest. Please take the time to Digg, Stumble Upon or add to the other social network of your choice to help me spread the word about these issues. Please forward any questions or suggestions to: askthefm@gmail.com

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Entry filed under: Design, Environment, News. Tags: , , .

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