Voices From The National Bike Summit 2010
Last week, hundreds of bike advocates descended on Washington D.C. for the tenth annual National Bike Summit -- the largest one yet. Hosted by the League of American Bicyclists, the summit is always a great opportunity for advocates to share ideas and make the case for cycling on Capitol Hill. This year attendees encouraged their senators and representatives to sign on to several key pieces of legislation, including the Active Community Transportation Act, Safe Routes to School Act, and the Urban Revitalization and Livable Communities Act.
Streetfilms attended the summit and had the chance to talk to several participants. Check out this wrap-up for insight into some of the big bicycle initiatives happening around the country. You'll hear from conference host Andy Clarke, Representative Earl Blumenauer, Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz, the FTA's Peter Rogoff, and more.
Andy Clarke: [0:11] This is the 10th National Bike Summit. We bring the bicycle movement to Washington to make the case for cycling up on Capitol Hill. We have a great mix of industry people, retailers, and advocates.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer: [0:23] Washington, DC, attracts people from all over the country for every imaginable issue. It's absolutely essential, if we're going to be able to represent the interests of cyclists, that their voice is heard.
Leah Shahum: [0:35] I've been coming to the National Bike Summit for almost 10 years now. It's really worthwhile for us to come out, not only to be connecting with our colleagues, advocates from around the country, but also really to be going up on the Hill and make sure our voices are heard to our legislators.
Jessie Singer: [0:50] One of the most important messages I think I spoke about at the Bike Summit is about fostering relationships with the police in our communities. Without their help, our lives are constantly in danger.
Allison Mannos: [1:01] I just presented on the panel on serving communities of color and how to broaden the movement. And we discussed our City of Lights program, where we reach out to Latino day-labor cyclists in LA.
Andy Clarke: [1:12] We build the program around the asks that people are going to make up on Capitol Hill. So we've got a critical session on a new piece of legislation to get more funding into cities for improving walking and cycling conditions, the ACT Act, the Active Community Transportation Act.
Jeff Miller: [1:26] We're helping make the case with data that, while biking and walking make up roughly about 10 percent of all trips, and nearly 13 percent of fatalities, we receive only 1.2 percent of all the safety funding that's out there. So, we're looking for a fair share for safety and, overall, to increase biking.
Jon Orcutt: [1:47] Our schools, for instance, are magnets for congestion, because too few of our children can walk and bike safely to school. 25 percent of the congestion within three miles of the school is because there are parents taking kids back and forth to school.
Kimberly White: [2:04] I am an intern at Recycle-A-Bicycle in Brooklyn, New York, and I'm here today to lobby for the Safe Routes to School bill. It's really motivating me to get more involved in the political process that we just see implemented on us day to day but we don't really know how it works.
Leah Shahum: [2:21] We help folks think about what a great biking environment looks like, and we gain a lot of that from coming here and seeing what our colleagues in other cities are doing.
Mayor Dave Cieslewicz: [2:29] I was here this morning presenting on both New York City's programs around cycling and green transportation, and talking about the common project we have with 14 other cities in the country, called Cities for Cycling, where we're trying to share best practices and collectively write a new design manual for urban cycling facilities.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer : [2:50] We've engineered too much of the United States around the car. We've made it impossible, virtually, to do other forms of transportation. And what we want to do is open up our streets to other possibilities. In Madison, we really want to have a bicycle revolution. We have a mode share for bikes of about three percent. We want to think not in terms of three or four or five percent; we want to think in terms of 15, 20, 25 percent, so that we can compare to cities like Amsterdam and Copenhagen.
Peter Rogoff: [3:19] We may very well have, as a result of the economy, a greater transit-dependent population than we had before. It makes it all the more important that we move these policies and programs into place that recognizes the needs and values to the society of people riding transit, people using their bicycles, and people using both their bicycles and transit.
Anthony Taylor: [3:41] I must say that this is an event that a lot of people don't have on their radar. But you should, because what this did for me two years ago, the very first time I came, was really frame the idea of bicycling as part of the multi-modal transportation movement, and that that is key to what we want in terms of livable communities. [3:58] And I bike every day, and I've commuted, but I didn't fully get the connection to that and the legislative effort that goes on and how I can participate and contribute to that, and I wish more people who bike that don't necessarily consider themselves advocates would participate.