Wednesday, April 28, 2010

CCBA = Bike Walk CT

So the CCBA is now Bike Walk Connecticut, with a focus on advocating and educating. Checking out their webpage it is pretty clear that the organization is really intent on being a legislative voice primarily with an education component and a decreased emphasis on hosting monthly events, etc.

I am meeting with one of the organizations advisors for lunch on Friday and I have a few thoughts written down to discuss, but I want your input to add as well. Ponder the following and post up your thoughts, or send them to me at if you want to keep them out of the blogosphere.

1. what is the best way to promote biking as a legit form of transportation? (ie events, legislative action, education, a mix)

2. are monthly bike to work or other gatherings critical in your mind to keep cyclists in the community's eye?

3. if you are not a member of bike walk ct, why not? what would it take to bring you in?

4. what kind of bike related things would you volunteer your time for?

5. what is the best way to educate potential riders? (ie target schools, target families, target the crazy people who ride against traffic with no predictable movement, no helmet and no awareness of anyone else on the road)

6. here is the big generic catch all, what do you want out of the organization that represents your interests in the state?

Positive, negative, neutral, i want it all. Help me put together some good thoughts and comments so we can make Connecticut safer and more generally conducive to getting around on two wheels!!


Schleppi Longstocking said...

I was actually looking at the site this morning and very, very disappointed to see that the monthly event section was outdated. I find rides like Critical Mass to be important. Legislation is good, but what's the point if there's no community? Going to a fundraiser (that most people drove to) is not the same as being able to bond with other cyclists.

I'm not a member of the group. I've thought of becoming, but felt disillusioned after the recent annual fundraiser. Perhaps I'd consider joining if there were less behind-the-scenes work and more visibility.

Best way to promote cycling and walking is by doing, not by sitting around simply talking about doing or making laws about doing.

As for educating riders -- go to the schools, but also incorporate this into driver's education. Leave people with no helmets alone. Smashing skull open is how they can educate themselves.

(more thoughts later)

Brendan said...

I tend to agree with Ms. Longstocking.

Look at NEMBA: they ride, advocate, educate and do trail work. It's fun to ride a bike, but advocacy, etc. isn't fun.

Why drop the fun thing from your mission?

Anonymous said...

i could care less about kids riding bikes... i think the crowd that you want to go after are the grown ups that live in wethersfield/east hartford/west hartford and other local towns that currently drive cars into downtown hartford for work, or vice versa.

get the employers engaged; put together a presentation package and solicit major companies in the area to present this information to their employees. it should contain some basic info, some safe laid out routes that already have bike lanes, a list of people that already ride that route and can act as a mentor and show the general benefit of riding a bike to work.

also try to pass legislature that every single road should have a 3ft bike lane that people can't use as a parking spot.

Interstatement said...

Thanks for posting this. I don't love the new name. I started writing a post about that, but it fell by the wayside.

I think that fun and visible rides and events are a necessity. As I ranted after the miniscule bike turnout for the annual meeting, we lose credibility if we, as members, aren't taking the "Bike Everywhere" credo to heart and making an earnest effort to do so.

Show people how fun, easy and convenient it can be to ride, and more and more people will do so.