Thursday, April 3, 2014

It is Time to get Organized

*** Meet at 6pm on Monday, April 7th at Fire and Spice.  Hartford specific bike, walk, bus advocacy group is forming.  ***

What is with all the surface parking lots?  Why are there very few neighborhood to neighborhood bus route connections?  How come bus route frequency falls off a cliff after 6PM?  What can we do about it?

"Hartford Has It!"  Hartford has a lot of bus transit, walking, and cycling for transportation.  A significant portion of the mode share is not single occupancy motor vehicles, particularly for those living downtown and in the surrounding neighborhoods.  The question is, "Why isn't there more attention paid to and money spent on those options?"  Some might say that the issue is income, race, and class discrimination.  While I'm sure that is part of the problem, I'd say that another contributing factor is that there isn't an organized group of citizens and community leaders advocating for transportation alternatives.
A chicken or egg conundrum, it seems.
Well, rather than simply talk in circles and debate, Justin Eichenlaub has decided to organize some citizens in Hartford.  In ten years or so, we can look back on this and decide whether the organizing was useful.  I'm going to put my money on organized citizens, as talking in circles is so fucking tiresome.  The next informal meeting of this fledgling group of active transportation advocates is on Monday, April 7th or 14th at Fire and Spice, because people are hungry after work.  He's taking votes right now on which night works best for those interested.  To make things easy, I'll post the date of the actual meeting in the comments once it is announced.

Single occupancy vehicle travel.  Going the way of the dinosaur.
While we're talking about transit.  Ken and I visited New Britain this past weekend via the mostly paved CT Fastrak route.  Aside from Ken's two pinch flats en route (railroad rocks), it was a very rapid transit on bikes.  Unfortunately once the bus route opens the only sanctioned bike path will run from Newington Junction to New Britain.  In the meantime, I unofficially encourage you to check it out.  Fastrak commuters will get a solid dose of industrial back waters, dynamic graffiti walls, and natural areas - without having to ride their bicycle on train tracks.  Not much better if you ask me.

Beat Bike Bloggers sampling the future of Bus Rapid Transit
Check out these sexy stations.  There is a place to stand, sort of out of the elements.
And industrial wastelands.  My favorite thing.
Reminder.  Dinner and Bikes.  Saturday, June 7th.  Vegan food.  Bicycle movie shorts.  Bikenomics.  Get your tickets ahead of time and put it on your calendar now.


Anonymous said...

It's kinda hard to take seriously a blog post about getting active and organized when half of it is celebrating trespassing.

Anonymous said...

Your ad hominem attack says nothing about the validity of his arguments.

Tony C said...

Easier to attack than add to the conversation. Particularly in an anonymous fashion.

I was initially on the fence about Fastrak, but after catching a presentation that went through the level of service and transit times got pretty stoked. Also creates enough transit frequency that it could drive dense development along that existing corridor. If the Hartford / New Britain connection works out, I could see other spurs of BRT developing. If it doesn't pan out, thank jeebus they didn't waste the funds on something more expensive.