Soon after my presentation at the League of American Bicyclists' National Bike Summit & Women's Forum this month, my life was in peril! I was being swarmed by bike advocates from all over the country, a la the Walking Dead! Wwwwhhhhhyyyy meeeee????? Well, surely it was not my tasty flesh but rather this: people were nutso over the engineer rides I'd presented about—in which we ride with the engineers designing our bicycle infrastructure and help them understand their work from a cyclist's perspective. Apparently, Yay Bikes! has stumbled on something unique—assuming our engineers want to do a good job and loving on them in a way that helps them do just that. Love just isn't a big part of transportation conversations these days, go figure (and more on that in a future blog post). So we became a Very Hot Topic among our national community of advocates, and life-risk aside I was grateful for that...but I had to wonder whether we are quite as Very Hot back home. Because what we do is a Very Big Deal, and Very Big Changes are coming to our Central Ohio landscape—but if you don't know about it then that's on us and I apologize.
There are fixes coming to Summit Street's protected bike lanes. Bike lanes will soon extend through Downtown Columbus on Third and Fourth. "Share the Road" signs will be swapped for "Bikes May Use Full Lane" signs beginning in a few months and continuing over the next few years. Broad Street through Bexley will receive sharrows and other traffic calming measures. And, as Yay Bikes! continues to meet with and ride with those who influence the conditions that impact our experience as cyclists, there will be much, much more to come.
By and large this work—which you can always keep track of through our monthly activity reports—is supported through your membership dollars and donations. So I humbly request a local swarm! Support our ability to continue offering the national-caliber advocacy that delivers the infrastructure upgrades you've been waiting for. We are, after all, a Very Big Deal in some circles...not to mention pretty damn tasty. Of course.