Safe Pedestrians and a Walkable America

Saturday, July 31 by sandy

stroller at crosswalk, stroller at crosswalkThe Federal Highway Safety Administration (FHWA) has published its Summer 2010 newsletter, including links to the 15-year status report on walking and bicycling, resources for Safe Routes to Schools programs for law enforcement officers, grants for livable communities, and web-based courses about designing for pedestrian safety.

“Livability means being able to take your kids to school, go to work, see a doctor, drop by the grocery or Post Office, go out to dinner and a movie, and play with your kids at the park—all without having to get into your car.” -USDOT Secretary Ray LaHood

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Praise for West Windsor and the WWBPA

Thursday, July 29 by silvia

Community Walk 2010

The Bicycle Coalition of  Philadelphia has this to say about West Windsor:

“On July 19th, West Windsor Township, NJ home of Princeton Junction and Orson Wells’ Grovers Mill became the first suburban community in the DVRPC region to adopt a complete streets resolution. In some ways West Windsor Township seems to have been invaded by Martians. That would explain the miles of bike lanes and the success of the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance…. On a per-capita basis the organization is one of the most successful bicycle and pedestrian advocacy groups in the country, not too far off the pace of the San Francisco Bike Coalition. It is truly a model community for the many built-out suburbs in the region.”

You can read the entire item here.

The state’s Department of Transportation said:

“On July 19th, West Windsor Township became the second municipality in New Jersey, after Montclair, to adopt a Complete Streets Policy. In addition, Monmouth County became the first county in the state to adopt a Complete Streets Policy as the Board of Chosen Freeholders passed Resolution 10-592 at their meeting on July 22nd.
Congratulations and a big thank you from all of us at the NJDOT Office of Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs to all of you who worked so hard to make this happen!”

The WWBPA thanks all our members for their support and encourages friends to become members and swell the ranks. Our thanks as well to the West Windsor Council and administration for supporting Complete Streets.

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Another Successful Anchor House Ride for Runaways

Wednesday, July 28 by JerryFoster

Day 3 Potomac, Ken C, Ken N, and JerryWWBPA trustees and members participated in a 500-mile ride from Charlottesville, VA to Quaker Bridge Mall this year to raise money for the Anchor House shelter for runaway teens in Trenton. In total, the ride attracted pledges of over $400,000. Thank you to everyone who donated, and if you’d like to donate, click here.

Day 7 Pedestrian Bridge, Henry and EileenWWBPA participants included Jerry Foster, Ken Carlson, Newell Benedict, Ken Naglak, DJ Varner, Jack Hayon, Ron Weinstein, Bill Garrett and Henry and Eileen Murphy, among other West Windsor residents. With about 200 participants, it’s great fun for a great cause. We’re already looking forward to next year!

For more pictures and a day-by-day account of the ride, read Ken Carlson’s blog.

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Perils for Pedestrians (and Bicyclists, too)

Tuesday, July 27 by sandy

Perils for PedestriansPerils for Pedestrians is a monthly television series promoting awareness of issues affecting the safety of people who walk and bicycle. Producer John Z. Wetmore interviews advocates and government planners from around the country (and sometimes the world) about problems such as missing sidewalks and crosswalks, dangerous intersections, speeding traffic, and obstacles to wheelchair users and people with disabilities; solutions to such problems are offered.

The most recent episodes are available at on YouTube and older episodes (the series began in 1996) are linked from the index on pedestrians.org.

The shows are broadcast on the Princeton Public Access TV Channel (available in West Windsor on Verizon FiOS Channel 45). This summer they are shown on Tuesdays at 7 PM, Fridays at 1:30 PM, and Sundays at 11:30 AM.

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NYC’s Car-Free Summer Saturdays

Saturday, July 24 by silvia

New York City is once again temporarily closing Park Avenue and connecting streets from the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park to motor vehicles and open it up to people on three consecutive Saturdays in August (August 7, 14, & 21). Bike, walk, people-watch … it’s a giant block party!

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Learn to Ride

Friday, July 23 by sandy

Little Boy BicyclingLearn to ride a bicycle July 24, 31, or August 7.

Is your child at that age at which he or she wants to ride a two-wheeler? Is your back sore from bending over to balance your child on a rolling bicycle? Have YOU been wanting to ride but never had a chance to learn?  If so, this class is for you.

Bike&Walk Montclair and Diamond Cycle will hold workshops to teach children and adults to ride.

The workshop teaches a safe, easy, effective way to learn to ride.  Using the “balance first” method, instructors help get you rolling on your own.

Click here for location and more information.

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Protecting Pedestrians

Thursday, July 22 by silvia

www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden

A number of police departments in New Jersey are going undercover to enforce a law requiring that motorists stop for pedestrians in a crosswalk, not merely yield to them. Pedestrians account for nearly a quarter of traffic fatalities each year in New Jersey, well above the national average. These efforts are about making motorists more aware of pedestrians.

Violators of the law can be fined $200 plus court costs and get two points on their driving record.

New Brunswick is one of 13 communities taking part in “Cops in Crosswalks.” Collingswood is another. These departments have been given grants to fund the program. Read more here.

Read the official announcement from the New Jersey Department of Law & Public Safety. The program aims to educate both motorists and pedestrians about their responsibilities.

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West Windsor Believes in ‘Complete Streets’

Wednesday, July 21 by silvia

West Windsor adopted a “Complete Streets” resolution on Monday that calls for designing new and reconstructed streets so that they can “safely accommodate travel by pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit, and motorized vehicles and their passengers, with special priority given to bicyclist and pedestrian safety.”

Complete Streets policies have been adopted by the U.S. and New Jersey governments, but West Windsor is one of the first New Jersey municipalities to do so. The WWBPA believes that designing streets with ALL users in mind from the start will save money because we won’t have to do costly retrofits and will make our community more liveable — which benefits all of us (and our property values).

What do Complete Streets look like? Watch this animation to see the transformation of a fairly barren multiple-lane road becomes a bustling shopping area.

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Council Adopts Washington Road Resolution

Tuesday, July 20 by sandy

Washington RoadOn July 19, 2010, West Windsor Township Council adopted a resolution, requesting “that Mercer County establish a bicycle route from the Delaware and Raritan Canal to the Princeton Junction Train Station at West Windsor along Washington Road.”

Route 1 Circle

This is just a first step. The Departments of Transportation for both Mercer County and the State of New Jersey will have to come on board, since this is a county  route and it crosses U.S. Route 1, for which the State of New Jersey is responsible. It’s not clear how quickly they will act.  Join the WWBPA in reminding officials that this is the best way for cyclists to go between West Windsor and Princeton and that bike lanes will make the route safer for all. Come to our next meeting (Aug. 12) to learn more about how you can help.

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Road Diets: Still a Good Idea

Tuesday, July 20 by sandy

We’ve been advocating putting some of West Windsor’s roads on diets, principally Canal Pointe Boulevard and Alexander Road (see our post from May 2010).  A “road diet” means reducing travel lanes, for example, from four to two with a center turning lane, thus allowing room­ for bike lanes and sidewalks. This leads to  fewer changes in lane by cars and fewer accidents.

A June 2010 study commissioned by the U.S. Department of Transportation shows that road diets still allow for the same number of cars on the roads, with from 19% to 47% fewer crashes (percentages vary depending on whether the road diet is in an urban or suburban area).

Road Diet, before lane reduction

Four-lane configuration before road diet

road diet after lane reduction

Three-lane configuration after road diet

Source for both photos: Pedestrian Bike Information Center, “Road Diets” training module, 2009.

Click here for a summary report in HTML or PDF.

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Rewards for Kids Wearing Helmets

Wednesday, July 14 by sandy

This summer the police in Manville, a borough in Somerset County, are issuing tickets–not just for traffic violations. They’re stopping children wearing helmets while riding bikes and giving them ice cream tickets. The recipients may redeem the tickets for a free ice cream cone at a local ice cream shop. Read more in an article from the Manville News.

That’s a nice way to encourage kids to follow New Jersey’s law (children under 17 must wear helmets while riding bicycles). We’d like to encourage everyone, regardless of age, to wear helmets when riding bicycles.

“In 2008, 716 [20 in New Jersey] pedalcyclists were killed and an additional 52,000 were injured in traffic crashes. Pedalcyclist deaths accounted for 2 percent of all traffic fatalities, and pedalcyclists made up 2 percent of all the people injured in traffic crashes during the year.

“All bicyclists should wear properly fitted bicycle helmets every time they ride. A helmet is the single most effective way to prevent head injury resulting from a bicycle crash.”

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

For proper fitting of a helmet, safety tips, and more information,
go to the WWBPA page Ride Smart Ride Safe.

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Washington Road Update

Sunday, July 11 by silvia

Washington Road-projected

This is how Washington Road might look with bike lanes.

The West Windsor Council is discussing a resolution that asks Mercer County to designate ther shoulders on part of Washington Road as bike lanes. Please show your support at Monday’s meeting (July 12, West Windsor Municipal Center, 271 Clarksville Road) and speak up during public comment at the start of the meeting ( 7 p.m.)

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Bicycle Highways

Friday, July 9 by sandy

Did you know that the U.S. Bicycle Route 1, between Virginia and North Carolina, and Route 76, through Virginia, Kentucky and Illinois, opened in 1982?

The U.S. Bicycle Route System (USBRS) is a proposed national network of bicycle routes, spearheaded in part by Adventure Cycling, a nonprofit group that began with the idea of a cross-country ride to mark America’s Bicentennial in 1976. It’s also gotten the attention of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. Work has picked up recently, and Michigan is leading the way. Route 20 is under way and Route 35 should follow. As the network develops, look for it to connect many existing trails. Still to be decided is where it will go in New Jersey. (Adventure Cycling’s Atlantic Coast route skips the state,  but the East Coast Greenway goes right past West Windsor.)

Links:
Adventure Cycling: U.S. Bicycle Route System News and Updates

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Some Blogs We Like

Wednesday, July 7 by silvia

biking and walking www.pedbikeimages.org / Dan Burden

Biking Hiking with Kids: Trail information and tips on mountain biking and hiking with kids, with links to other hiking and cycling blogs.

Car-Free American: Bill Poindexter profiles people around the country who use bicycles for commuting, running errands, and recreation.

Car Free Days: Since 2007, two parents have been using cargo bicycles and setting an example for their kids by setting aside days without getting into their cars.

Free Range Kids: “Do you ever…let your kid ride a bike to the library? Walk to school? Make dinner? Or are you thinking about it? If so, you are raising a Free-Range Kid!”

Let’s Go Ride a Bike: Two friends bike-commute in Nashville and Chicago.

Livin’ in the Bike Lane: Ride hard, ride safe, ride on!

NJ Wild: Carolyn Edelmann blogs about nature, especially along the D&R Canal and towpath.

Pedal Around: a chronicle of  living car-free since Sept. 15, 2009 and his current adventure of bicycling cross-country. Love how he signs off with: PS: Remember, every lane is a bike lane. Share the road.

Streets Blog: The national blog network for sustainable transport, smart growth, and livable streets.

Suburban Bike Mama: Without a car for a few days, this city girl remembered her strong pedestrian roots and vowed to never “need” a car again.

A View from the Cycle Path: David Hembrow blogs about cycling in the Netherlands.

Walk Bike Jersey: The authors are advocates and professionals working to make our residents healthier, our air cleaner, our streets safer and the overall quality of life in New Jersey better.

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Stop Signs Revisited

Tuesday, July 6 by sandy

Community Walk and Stop SignArrol Gellner is on a campaign to improve traffic flow and safety by reducing the number of traffic lights and instead using stop signs.

Here are his 3 columns:

Better, cheaper solutions for traffic control

Getting the wrong signal on traffic improvements

Seeing red over unnecessary traffic signals

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Big Step Forward in Towpath “Link”

Monday, July 5 by silvia

The asphalt has been poured for the 1.5-mile stretch of the D&R Canal Towpath/East Coast Greenway in Trenton that will fill the gap in the route that runs past West Windsor to create a 70-mile path from New Brunswick to Frenchtown for bicyclists, joggers and walkers. Signs, fences and gates still need to be installed, but the lion’s share of this $400,000 project is done.

The section connects with a path near Old Rose Street and uses an old railroad bridge to cross over Route 1 before continuing north to Mulberry Street. Read more in the Trenton Times.

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Bike to Keep the Pounds at Bay

Sunday, July 4 by sandy

Woman Cyclist, www.pedbikeimages.org / Tiffany Robinson

Here are two easy ways women can keep from adding pounds: brisk walking and biking. An article in the Archives of Internal Medicine, Bicycle Riding, Walking, and Weight Gain in Premenopausal Women,” reports that even modest amounts of exercise can be effective. A summary of the findings is in Business Week, June 28, 2010, “A Little Biking May Help Premenopausal Women Stay Slim.” The study found that biking is particularly effective for overweight or obese women. (Sorry, but that casual stroll around the neighborhood at a pace of less than three miles an hour doesn’t have that weight-control effect.)

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Bicycle Thefts

Friday, July 2 by sandy

Bicycle LockSummer brings out bicyclists as well as bicycle thieves. Remember to lock your bikes securely.

The New York Times reports an increase in bicycle thefts, but the article also notes ways to track bikes and thieves.

For more ways to keep your bicycle safe and tips on what makes for a good (or bad) technique when locking your bike, see our Bike Racks and Lockers page.

Remember to register your bike online with the West Windsor Police Department. If it is stolen, having the serial number on file makes identification easier if it is recovered.

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Let’s Get Bike Lanes on Washington Road

Thursday, July 1 by silvia

The WWBPA has written to local and county officials urging that the shoulders on Washington Road between Route 1 in West Windsor and Faculty Road in Princeton be marked as bike lanes. After the repaving work is done, the shoulders will be wide enough — so what are we waiting for? And why not create bike lanes on Washington Road on the other side of Route 1? This would be a big safety improvement for cyclists commuting to the Princeton Junction train station or to jobs in Princeton, as well as for recreational cyclists.

Do you agree? Let officials know!

Read the WWBPA letter.

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Upcoming Events

Apr        Membership Drive. Become a member/Renew your membership today and support our local community.

Apr 29  WWBPA to participate in Community Day at Duck Pond Park (11am-4pm)

May 1     Scholarship applications due for Graduating High School Seniors

May 6     Opening day for WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market & Walk from Hawk Elementary School

May 11     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

May 20   WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market & Kids Learn to Bike

June 3    WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market  & Adult Learn to Bike (9am-12pm)

Jun 8       Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

June 17   WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market & Bike Repair Clinic

July 8     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

July 13     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

July 22    WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Aug  5     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Aug 10    Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Aug 19    WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Sept 9     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Sept 14   Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Sept 23   WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market – Bike Drive (Donations)

Oct 7       WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Oct 12     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Oct 28     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market – Halloween

Ongoing – Register your bike with the WW Police Dept for Free

Volunteer Opportunities – Sign up to give back to the community

Now Accepting Applications for WWBPA Student Advisory Board

More Events »

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