Join us for Bike-in Movie Night: I Heart Huckabees

August 22, 2012

Join us TONIGHT at the Common Market in South End for a screening of I Heart Huckabees, a 1994 comedy where a husband-and-wife team play two detectives, helping others solve their existential issues with “universal interconnectivity.” The film stars Jason Schwartzman, Dustin Hoffman, Lily Tomlin, Jude Law, Isabelle Huppert, Mark Wahlberg and Naomi Watts.

The screening starts at night fall on the outdoor patio of the Common Market South. Bring your own lawn chair if you like, bring a friend, bring a date, but most importantly, ride a bike! See you there.

See the trailer here: http://vimeo.com/21079288

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Sierra Club to host former Executive Director

August 20, 2012

 

 

Make plans to join the Sierra Club on Wednesday, August 22, as they welcome Martin Zimmerman, former Executive Director of CABA, for a presentation and discussion about “Bicycling, sustainability and culture change – – – – a path to radically reduce Char-Meck’s carbon footprint “. 

The meeting starts off at 6:30 PM for pizza, refreshments and a chance to meet and socialize with other Sierra Club members and friends. The business meeting and program will begin at 7:00 PM. Non-members and potential new members are very welcome!

Central Piedmont Sierra Club meetings are held the fourth Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm (unless noted in an announcement) in the Mahlon Adams Pavilion at Freedom Park, 2435 Cumberland Avenue, Charlotte, NC, 28203. Cumberland Avenue is off of the 1500 block of East Boulevard.

The program is free and open to the public and you do not have to be a member to attend. Free parking is available.

 


CABA is Reaching Out to Charlotte’s Religious Community

August 15, 2012

Charlotte Area Bicycle Alliance Board Member, Jon Harding, will be giving a talk on transportation cycling and his experience replacing car miles with active transportation.  This talk will be part of the religious services at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte this Sunday, August 19th.  Also speaking will be June Blotnick, Executive Director of Clean Air Carolina, who will address the Charlotte community’s air quality and her calling to become a caretaker for our air.  The UU Church of Charlotte is a welcoming church and has invited the cycling community to attend these services.  If you can, please ride your bike so we may fill up the UUCC’s bike rack.  Services will be this Sunday, August 19th at 9:15AM and 11:15AM, and casual dress is welcome.  The Uniterian Universalist Church of Charlotte is located at 234 North Sharon Amity Road in Charlotte just off CDOT’s bicycle route #9.


B-Cycle Bike Share: Change on the Horizon

August 13, 2012

Ten years ago Charlotte did not have too much in the way of bicycle infrastructure.  Now the city boasts more than 60 miles of bike routes, bike lanes popping up all around the city, some incredible greenway connections, and even the occasional sharrow. Not only has the infrastructure expanded, so has the culture – exemplified by like the 24 Hours of Booty and a slew of races including the Presbyterian Hospital Invitational Criterium, the Noda Grand Prix, Dilworth Crit and Urban Assault Ride.

Topping the list of bicycle infrastructure is our new bicycle-sharing program, Charlotte B-Cycle. This seems to be the next logical step for the city of Charlotte as it positions itself for sustainable growth in the 21th century.

Certainly, the right infrastructure is important to support such a system, but adding a bicycle lane to every street simply is not practical, and it ultimately has diminishing returns in terms of safety. Studies from cities across the world report that  safety is best improved through increased ridership.  With more bicyclists on the street, the risk of injury or death in a crash with motor vehicle declines exponentially. This is because of raised awareness that bicyclists are commonly present. Additionally, incidents are particularly low among B-Cycle users, perhaps because of their increased visibility thanks to front/rear lights and the unique appearance of the bicycles.

Of course, following the rules of the road is imperative to the safe operation of all vehicles, including bicycles. For those who may not be as knowledgeable about the rules of the road as they pertain to bicycling, it is simple: act like you are driving. This means turn signals, stopping for traffic signals, and not moving to the front of the queue while waiting for one to turn green.  There will be a learning curve, but Charlotte is full of smart people who will manage to pick it up quickly. After all, it is just like riding a bike!

As we climb the learning curve, change is eminent. Other cities have found an increased number of cyclists and shifts in the types of cyclists taking to the streets, not just on B-cycles but across the board. This is because bike share tends to encourage a broader range of people to think about bikes as transportation because the commitment to purchasing, maintaining and storing a bicycle is diminished. Cost savings tend to reinforce the idea. Capital Bikeshare in Washington DC reports that members save an average of $891 per year in their system while AAA calculates car ownership at upwards of $9,000 annually.

Although members tend to find savings, it is being discovered that some of these savings are going to local bikes shops. It seems counter intuitive at first glance, but bike share encourages people to invest in their own bikes and accessories to make their ride even more enjoyable. This has led many to describe bike share as “a gateway” to bike ownership.

Cleaner air, healthier people, cost savings, and a boon for local businesses through a privately funded venture – seems like a good thing for everyone.

Are you ready to go out for a ride yet? Check out the casual bike ride calendar for a schedule of dates and times when you can meet a local cyclist or two at a station near you for a short ride around the city. The $8 daily membership will apply, but if you love it – that cost is applied toward an annual membership of $65 if you purchase within 24 hours.


Bike In Movie Night this Wednesday

August 6, 2012

The next Bike-In Movie Nite will feature the documentary film, Line of Sight by Lucas Brunelle. For the past ten years Brunelle has been following the best urban cyclist from 30 cities around the globe. This 60 minute film is a compilation of his best footage tracking these riders as they dodge and weave thru traffic like jedi pilots on bikes. Even if you disapprove of their riding style, you cannot help but admire their skill and dexterity in negotiated some of the most dangerous traffic in the world.

The movie will start at night fall on the outdoor patio of the Common Market South this Wednesday, August 8th. Bring your own lawn chair if you like, bring a friend, bring a date, but most importantly, ride a bike! See you there.


Feedback Needed to Develop New NC Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan with NCDOT

August 1, 2012

We all talk amongst ourselves about wanting to stand up for bikes and that cycling as transportation or recreation is important to us. There is now a chance to give the North Carolina Department of Transportation your two cents on the matter!

The N.C. Department of Transportation is in the process of developing a new statewide pedestrian and bicycle plan – and it is seeking the public’s help to craft a vision for the future of biking and walking in North Carolina.The plan, which will be developed by the department’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Division, in collaboration with state agencies and regional, private and industry stakeholders, will examine how to create a safer pedestrian and bicycle network that also benefits the state’s economy, public health and environment.

When completed, the plan will be among the most comprehensive of its kind in the nation.

Learn all about the plan at NCDOT’s website, and share your thoughts and ideas related to pedestrian and bicycle transportation at the plan’s online community forum – www.walkbikenc.com.


CABA and Trips for Kids Charlotte are Hosting a Youth Bicycling Clinic – And We Need Your Help!

July 30, 2012

Charlotte Bicycle RodeoCharlotte Area Bicycle Alliance is excited to partner with Trips for Kids Charlotte and local cyclists to host a youth cycling clinic and bike drive in South Charlotte’s  Mountainbrook neighborhood.  The clinic will be geared toward kids and parents to teach youth how to safely bicycle in our city for transportation and fun.

The Mountainbrook neighborhood reached out to the cycling community in an effort to give it’s young residents the skills to get around their community having fun and in style – by bike!  CABA is seeking 10 volunteers to help make this event a success.  This clinic will be held on Sunday August 26th from 2-4PM in the parking lot of the Mountainbrook Swim & Racquet Club, 3100 Mill Pond Road, Charlotte, NC 28210. We’re seeking volunteers who are 18 and over, are experienced cyclists, and mechanically inclined to assist with the clinic.

Come out and join us to help the Charlotte community learn safe cycling skills.

This is a first of a kind event for CABA that we hope to be the start of a series of cycling skill clinics.

Please contact the caba volunteer coordinator at volunteer@charlottebikes.org to sign up