Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition

August
2010


South Coast high schools will roll
County sustainability plans on tap Aug 3rd
Adventure Cycling director coming here August 4th
Mouse geniuses
"Wag's Wild Rides" energize Goleta staff
Bike polo, anybody?
UCSB's bait bikes are reducing theft
Cranky's helps us all
Volunteers clear local trails
Federal bike goals approached and surpassed
Plan SB transportation considered by Council
CycleMAYnia recap features unique bike ride
Bici Centro activities
South Coast high school team competes
Goleta Old Town conditions discussed
A Santa Barbara bike shop opens, one reopens
July Coalition meeting topics
ROMP guys pedal through county
We thank our active members

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South Coast high schools will roll
by Kent Epperson

photo of high school students

Students roll up to the San Marcos high school bike racks, pumped up for classes. Photo by Ralph Fertig.

  • Traffic Solutions, the Community Environmental Council, the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition and the City of Santa Barbara will be rolling out a Walk and Roll campaign at South Coast high schools this fall. It's designed to stimulate students to bicycle, walk, carpool and use buses. We need help from students and parents to participate in two upcoming Walk and Roll projects:
  • Walk and Roll to School Video. We're putting together a short movie of local high school students and their parents who have positive routines using sustainable transportation to and from school. They can be bicycling, walking, carpooling, taking the bus, or use a combination of modes. We will capture their experiences, challenges and solutions. We plan to show the movie at the high schools as well as GATV and City TV. If you know anyone that might help please have them contact me.
  • Secondary Student Focus Group. Since developing car free campaigns at the high school level is new to us, we will hold a focus group of secondary students and parents to help us create a meaningful campaign. If you know of students or parents willing to help, please have them contact me. We're seeking a good mix of students, some sustainable transportation users and some that are not. We want a mix of boys and girls from diverse backgrounds and social groups representative of the school. The focus group will meet in September. If you wish to receive our Walk and Roll e-Newsletter, just sign up here.
  • Finally, if you're a creative person with connections to South Coast high schools and wish to help with the Walk and Roll campaign, please help us refine this exciting venture.
  • Kent Epperson is Director of Traffic Solutions. Reach him at 961-8917 or KEpperson@sbcag.org.

County sustainability plans on tap Aug 3rd

  • Come to our monthly Bicycle Coalition meeting. Among other timely topics, we will hear from the County's senior planner Susan Curtis. She will talk about the Climate Action Strategy that is being completed by the Office of Long Range Planning. Since nearly half of our county's greenhouse gas emissions come from motor vehicles, non-polluting travel by bicycle is a ready-made, healthy solution. Here's the meeting:
  • Tuesday, August 3rd, 12:00 noon
    Granada Garage Conference Room, 2nd floor
    1221 Anacapa Street, Santa Barbara
  • If you wish to talk to Curtis, phone her at 568-3573.

Adventure Cycling director coming here August 4th

photo of Sayers family

Jim Sayer and family, dressed in rain gear, moving down the Oregon coast, heading our way.

  • Adventure Cycling Evening
    August 4th, 7:00 PM
    Santa Barbara Public Library, Faulkner Gallery
    40 East Anapamu St, Santa Barbara
  • Mark your calendars for a special event on August 4th. We're going to have an exciting evening featuring bicycle travel stories and hosting Jim Sayer, executive director of the 45,000-member Adventure Cycling Association.
  • Jim is cycling down the Pacific Coast from Canada to Mexico with his wife Wendy and daughters Samantha, Keilan and Lucy. In a way, they are coming home because Jim and Wendy met while students at UCSB. They will be talking about the Adventure Cycling organization, plus their own bike touring experiences.
  • The evening will also include short presentations by Dave Bourgeois on bike touring France with his wife Christine; Ralph Fertig about bicycling in northern Cambodia; and a film "Mzungus in the Mist" by Isaac and Jacob Seigel-Boettner about Santa Barbara Middle School students biking in Rwanda.
  • So don't miss an inspirational evening. A voluntary donation at the door will help our bicycling education programs.

Mouse geniuses

  • We've heard that aerobic exercise like bicycling helps make us smarter, but just how that happens has stumped scientists until recently. Researchers at the Laboratory of Genetics at the Salk Institute in San Diego proved in the late 1990s that humans and animals produce new brain cells if they exercise. Mice and rats pulsed with new neurons and breezed through mazes after running on wheels.
  • Recently, scientists at Northwestern University have identified a body protein BMP that dampens the generation of new brain cells and neurons. Exercise produces another protein suitably named Noggin that suppresses BMP activity. Mice at Northwestern that were given large doses of Noggin became, in the words of Neurology Department chairman Jack Kessler, "little mouse geniuses, if there is such a thing." They aced the mazes and other tests.
  • Kessler concludes, "If ever exercise enthusiasts wanted a rationale for what they're doing, this should be it." Exercise, he says, through a complex interplay with Noggin and BMP, helps to ensure that neuronal stem cells stay lively and new brain cells are born. So very simply—you're smart to bike, and even smarter because you bike.

“Wag’s Wild Rides” energize Goleta staff
by Ralph Fertig

photo of GOleta staff on bikes

Goleta city staff pause on UCSB's bluffs overlooking surfers before a steep and sandy descent. Photo by Ralph Fertig.

  • A funny thing happened when CycleMAYnia arrived at Goleta City Hall—Community Development Director Steve Wagner hopped on his bicycle and invited other staff members to join him for a ride. They did.
  • Now Wagner leads bike rides to different parts of the Goleta area each Wednesday. I had the pleasure of joining them on July 14 for a trip to the UCSB oceanfront where my skinny tires squirreled in the sand, but it was a fun ride. Thank you Steve, may there be many more wild rides.

Bike polo, anybody?

  • Two decades ago, there was an active bike polo group in Santa Barbara, competing on the East Beach soccer field. Interest faded when the organizer passed away.
  • It's time to bring it back, says Jim Cadenhead, who wants to organize a hard court version. If you're interested, phone Jim at Cranky's Bikes 963-7433.

UCSB’s bait bikes should reduce theft

photo of UCSB bikes

Thousands of bikes racked at dormitories and other campus buildings provide ready temptations for thieves. Photo by Ralph Fertig.

  • The University of California Santa Barbara police department has launched a "bait bike" program to reduce bicycle thefts on campus. The program is partnering with the Associated Students BIKES committee that helped purchase a GPS tracking device for installation in a "bait" bicycle. When the bike is stolen, the thief is tracked down and arrested. The campus police chief Dustin Olson commented that while bike theft is not their most serious crime, depriving somebody of their everyday transportation is a quality of life issue. By prosecuting cases, he believes the word will spread that bike theft is not tolerated.
  • The University of Wisconsin has been leaving bait bikes around campus for two years, and the number of reported thefts has dropped 30%, from 500 a year down to 350.
  • We hope that other local jurisdictions will learn from UCSB, and consider implementing their own GPS bike program.

Cranky's helps us all

  • Jim Cadenhead, owner of Cranky's Bikes in Santa Barbara, feels strongly about supporting local bicycling activities and advocacy. He says, "The community that has embraced us so warmly is one that we want to advance and promote. For every bike sold over $500, we automatically register its owner with the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition. We believe that a strong, voter-backed, local coalition can work as an incredible asset, and possible advocate, for homegrown cyclists' rights and facilities improvements."
  • We couldn't agree more, and thank Jim for his fervent support of all things "bicycle."

Volunteers clear local trails

  • Thanks to the Santa Barbara Mountain Bike Trail Volunteers, the first of a series of focused trail events took place on July 18th. It was a short duration, ride/hike/run/hoof in-and-out work session on Jesusita Trail. Nine volunteers brushed a locations where the vegetation was pushing users off of the trail, repaired trenching across the tread, and built rock armored tread where tread had fallen away. Trail tools where transported in and out on the SBMTV Bob tool trailers.
  • Watch our event listing for upcoming opportunities to help improve our local trails. To learn more, go to www.sbmtv.org or email Chris Orr at chris.orr@sbmtv.org.

Federal bike goals approached and surpassed

photo of cover of report

Cover of 15 Year Status Report.

  • In 1991, Congress appropriated $1 million for a National Bicycling and Walking Study. It had two overall goals:
  • Double the 8% of US biking and walking trips to 16%
  • Reduce the number of bicyclist/pedestrian fatalities by 10%.
  • Since the Study was finished, the US Department of Transportation has published 5-year, 10-year, and last May, a 15-year follow up Status Report. Unlike the earlier versions, this year's report includes a range of bike/ped efforts at the national, state and local levels. Plus it makes recommendations for policy, research, and other measures that will help meet the Study's goals.
  • In 1990, only 0.7% of all reported trips were taken by bicycle; since than, it has not doubled, but last year it reached 1.0%. Even when combined with walking trips, the total of 12% is still short of the 16% goal. The number of bike trips in those 19 years has actually increased from 1.7 billion to 4.0 billion a year, but because more people are taking more trips of all kinds, the percent increase fails to meet the goal.
  • For bicyclist fatalities, the 10% reduction goal has been achieved. In 1993 there were 814 bicyclists killed in motor vehicle crashes. There were 716 killed in 2008, representing a welcome decrease of 12 percent.
  • What has also improved significantly since the 1991 Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) has been federal funding for bicycle and pedestrian programs. In 1990, it was $6 million; by 1997, it had increased to $238 million.
  • The reasoning behind this new support for bicycling and walking is based on the numerous benefits that biking and walking convey on us all—better health, less congestion, saved energy, environmental protection, lower costs, and an overall enhanced quality of life.
  • The Status Report cites numerous programs at all community levels that demonstrate the expanding support for walking and bicycling. Included are:
  • Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program. $25 million to each of four communities to improve their bike/ped mode share.
  • Safe Routes to School Program. The federal program augments those from California and Santa Barbara county's Measure A tax.
  • Interagency Partnership for Sustainable Communities. US DOT joins EPA and HUD to help integrate biking into communities.
  • Complete Streets. Cities in California and elsewhere have to provide safe and accessible streets for bicyclists and other users.
  • Climate Action Plans. Jurisdictions, organizations, and mayors of over a thousand cities, including Santa Barbara, have pledged to reverse harmful greenhouse gas effects.
  • You can download and read the 24-page Status Report here.

Plan SB transportation considered by Council
by Ralph Fertig

  • The city of Santa Barbara's revision of their General Plan, called "Plan Santa Barbara," has been crafted by public workshops and city committees, and is now being discussed by the City Council.
  • The Council meeting on July 20th included presentations by Rob Dayton about transportation alternatives. The future projections for Plan alternatives show that the least motor vehicle congestion will come from denser housing in downtown and outer State Street areas, coupled with pricing of street parking and promotion of alternatives to the car. Bicycle Coalition members Alex Pujo, Michael Chiacos, and Ralph Fertig asked Council members to essentially adopt that scenario. Chiacos also suggested that councilmember Michael Self, who has twice collided with pedestrians while biking, take our Street Skills class.
  • One aspect of the plan is "adaptive management" where the results of policies are monitored, and ineffective ones revised. Grant House observed that the city is already doing that, the new Plan will just formalize it. Helene Schneider envisioned more options for individuals and neighborhoods.
  • As for decoupling new housing from parking—meaning that renters would pay separately for parking—Das Williams said that it's essential for the Plan. Michael Self said she could not accept any plan that included it. Mayor Scheider suggested trying it in some parts of the city, and monitoring the results.
  • Dale Francisco and Frank Hotchkiss said that we're maxed out on walking and biking, so there's no sense trying to increase them. But they didn't talk about decreasing cars, the source of our rush-hour congestion and half the city's greenhouse gas emissions.

CycleMAYnia recap features unique bike ride

photo of conference bike

Fun on a Conference Bike. Photo by Ralph Fertig.

  • On July 7th, the SBCAG South Coast Subregional Committee had a fun ride and presentation, organized by Traffic Solutions director Kent Epperson. Supervisors Janet Wolf and Salud Carbajal were joined by councilmembers Roger Aceves and Joe Armendariz, plus team winners of the Bike Challenge, for a street ride on the 7-person Conference Bike. The whimsical ride was preceded by a press conference introducing the Fielding Forward team members and presenting them with a trophy. Then the ride was followed by a movie that showed a quick summary of the 2010 CycleMAYnia events. Our thanks to all involved.

Bici Centro activities

Bici Centro logo

  • Our Bici Centro community bike program is offering bicycle services each week. Below are hours for various groups. Info at www.bicicentro.org or phone 617-3255.
  • Monday, volunteers only, 4:00-8:00 PM
  • Tuesday, youth only, 3:00-6:00 PM
  • Tuesday, "Learn Your Bike" classes, 7:00-9:00 PM
  • Wednesday, Spanish-speaking only, 4:00-7:00 PM
  • Thursday, open shop 4:00-7:00 PM
  • Saturday, open shop 2:00-5:00 PM

South Coast high school team competes

SoCal Cycling League logo

  • Formed just two years ago, the Southern California High School Cycling League already has 19 teams, the newest of which is from the Santa Barbara area. Our team consists of five students, one female and four male bikers. They come not from a single school, but from four South Coast schools—Santa Barbara, Dos Pueblos, San Marcos High Schools, and El Puente Community School.
  • Under the direction of Coach Jeff Harbison, the new Santa Barbara team competed in a series of four races in San Diego, Los Angeles and Santa Barbara Counties and then a State Final in Grass Valley between the SoCal and NorCal riders where champions were crowned in four age categories. The League is a great opportunity for high schoolers who enjoy cross-country mountain biking to be able to compete at their own level just as they currently do in traditional school sports. It's also a chance for beginning riders to pick up the sport.
  • "Those who think the sport is only about competition would be missing the boat," says Harbison, "as the whole affair is a metaphor for life for these young people. They learn to plan and organize their training and keep track of their personal development in the sport. Along the way they learn about motivation, physical, mental and even mechanical preparation, as well as self-sufficiency while out on the course. Their camaraderie is also a big part of the reward as well."
  • High school cross-country mountain biking is rapidly developing not only throughout California, but also in Colorado and Texas, all as part of the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA). Santa Barbara will again have a team this fall. Harbison hopes to eventually move from our composite school team to several individual teams from each of our local high schools.
  • To learn more about volunteering as an adult helper, or as a student mountain biker, go to the SoCalDirt.org website or contact Jeff Harbison at harbisons@gmail.com.

Goleta Old Town conditions discussed

  • On July 21st, a major study of Old Town Goleta was kicked off with a public forum about car parking. There was a presentation by Walker Parking Consultants (www.walkerparking.com). "Parking efficiency" was the goal, meaning that motorists can find spaces when they seek them, parking areas are neither empty nor full, and shared business parking is encouraged.
  • When it came to public comments, however, few were about car parking. Nearly all speakers asked for a more walkable, bikeable, sustainable, and more livable community. While there are many businesses along Hollister Avenue, they are hard to see while driving or bicycling, perhaps because of all the distractions of turning, lane changing, and parking vehicles. The buildings are mostly unimproved since the 1960s, and it's a disconcerting hodgepodge of styles.
  • The evening was an encouraging start for Goleta's effort. Watch for winter workshops.

A Santa Barbara bike shop opens, one reopens

Photo of The Bici shop

The Bici, 1229 State Street, Santa Barbara.
European cycle shop with vintage and new bikes, it complements Baron Corpuz' three others nearby. Photo by Ralph Fertig.

photo of Open Air Bicycle shop

Open Air Bicycles, 1303 State Street, Santa Barbara.
New owner Ed Brown, left, shows a bike to a potential customer on opening day. Photo by Ralph Fertig.

  • Santa Barbara Downtown is buzzing with more bike shops than ever before. Within two blocks of State Street, there are now 11 shops serving the diverse needs of residents and visitors alike. Here are the two latest:
  • The Bici. A month ago, Baron and Cecile Corpuz quietly opened The Bici, a European cycle shop with vintage and new bikes plus components, for your touring and road racing pleasure. This is essentially the public face for their online business of classic bike parts that they purchase in Europe by the container and ship here. Their website www.the-bici.com describes their extensive offerings, many of which can be seen and bought at their new shop. The Bici complements their three other shops in the same block, The Bikestand, The Bikestand 2.0, and The Bikestand 3.0.
  • Open Air Bicycles. This shop has been a Santa Barbara fixture for decades. What happened a few weeks ago was that Mike Fasth sold the shop to Ed Brown. Ed, as many of us know, has been the manager for Velo Pro for years. This was an opportunity for Ed to fulfill his long-time dream of having a shop of his own.
  • The shop's emphasis is now on bikes for all family members, from kids to adults, for commuting and recreational rides. They are featuring bicycles from Giant, the world's largest bike manufacturer. Check out their website openairbicycles.com and stop by any time.

July Coalition meeting topics

  • Our July 6th monthly Bicycle Coalition meeting was held at Cody's Cafe, Goleta, with 9 people talking about these topics:
  • Judy Keim described an evening with ROMP cyclists, talking about their bike trip to Guatemala.
  • Chris Orr described his experiences at the National Bike Summit in DC. He encourages others to attend if only for one time, to understand the legislative process and how to influence it.
  • Nathan Pfaff talked about ongoing work by AS BIKES at UCSB, describing several summer projects.
  • Ralph Fertig described the process for Cachuma Lake recreation improvements, hopefully including bike access to the North Shore.
  • Hans van Tol, a physicist visiting UCSB for a week, explained his interest in starting a bike advocacy group in Tallahassee, FL.
  • Ralph Fertig described the visit of Adventure Cycling's Jim Sayer.

ROMP guys pedal through county

photo of ROMP cyclists

ROMP cyclists Jim, Greg and Pat stand before the Ablitt's house during a walking tour of Santa Barbara. Photo by Judy Keim.

  • Three "Range of Motion" (ROMP) guys biking from Oregon to Guatemala to earn funding for prosthetic limbs for a clinic there passed through our county July 3-5. They enjoyed a festive Fourth in Los Alamos, then spent the next evening in Santa Barbara. Bicycle Coalition board members Judy Keim and Ralph Fertig took them to a brew pub, then Thai dinner and a walking tour of Downtown. Judy's business is "Pedal & Paddle of Santa Barbara" offering biking, kayaking and walking tours of the area. They had been many places, but not here, so were quite taken by the town. Follow them at www.rompglobal.org.

We thank our active members

  • Please thank and support these Bicycle Coalition business members:
  • Bicycle Bob's, Santa Barbara
  • Nett & Champion Insurance Services, Santa Barbara
  • Pedal Power Bicycles, Santa Maria
  • Dr J's Bicycle Shop, Solvang
  • Hazard's Cyclesport, Santa Barbara
  • Chris King Precision Components, Portland, Oregon
  • Santa Barbara Pedicabs, Santa Barbara
  • WheelHouse, Santa Barbara
  • Santa Barbara Bikes To-Go, Santa Barbara
  • Tailwinds Bicycle Club, Santa Maria
  • We welcome these new members: Scott Duncan, Michael Guevarra, Masashi Hokari, Ralph Lowi, Daniel Ortega, Bert Garcia, Alex Collins, Russell Baldridge, Erasmo Rebolledo, Paul Trent, Lars Mininni and Kent Epperson.
  • We appreciate those who renewed their memberships: Amy Frease, Ed France, Jim O'Dea, Stuart Sato and Ellen Wall.
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