SBBIKE's End of Year Appeal

You + SBBIKE = A win for families and our community!

Should kids be able to safely bike to school?

Absolutely! At SBBIKE we think that all Santa Barbara County kids and families should have safe and accessible routes to school.

Thanks to your support of SBBIKE, Santa Barbara County is experiencing a bicycling renaissance in K-12 schools – we need your help to keep these riders safe.

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Research Shows Benefits of Biking

You likely have a pretty good idea that biking is good for kids (and the adults they share the world with). But it may surprise you to learn just how good it is and in how many ways—mentally, emotionally, physical, socially, and academically. It may also surprise you to learn who typically rides in the US (and who doesn't)—what groups we need to focus on to close those gaps and ensure all who want to can safely access the many benefits of cycling. During summer 2017, German researcher Katja Siepmann interned with Audacious Foundation, SBBIKE and COAST's partner in bringing cycling education to schools across Santa Barbara County. Her well-referenced research into the benefits of bicycling is here:

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Goleta Bike + Pedestrian Plan rolls along

What is the Goleta Bicycle + Pedestrian Master Plan?

The Goleta Bicycle + Pedestrian Master Plan is a project to plan a road system where kids, adults, and seniors can ride bikes safely and happily all over Goleta. By getting involved, community members are working to make that dream a reality. Essentially, the goal is to make sure people can comfortably bike to the places they want to go. 

Where is the plan now?

The city just released the first draft which includes a planned bike network where future on-street bike lanes, protected bike lanes, bike boulevards, and off-street bike paths (like the Obern Trail) will be built. Juicy stuff!

Because this is a draft, SBBIKE volunteers (and you!) are reviewing what’s being proposed to ensure that it will support everyone from 8 to 80 years old. We’re really excited about the proposed future bike path on the Fairview Bridge and the inclusion of protected bike lanes (on-street bike lanes that use posts to physically separate bicyclists from cars). We’re still discussing how to make every freeway crossing safer (like Storke + Patterson) and what needs to happen first.

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Click here to see the draft in high resolution and here for a list of projects where you can leave comments or read more.

How can I get involved?

1.     Are you interested in getting together with other SBBIKE members to discuss and work to make the strongest bike plan possible? Email eve@sbbike.org 

2.     Next up, there will be a workshop in early January 2018. You can help just by attending and telling the city what you think. 

3.     Engage your neighbors + friends to go the workshop together!

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What else is in the works to make biking in Goleta better? 

Goleta is currently working on a few exciting projects including building the Elwood Bike Path from Pacific Oaks to Canon Green (it’s near completion!). They’re also working on the Hollister Complete Streets Project which aims to make Hollister Avenue better for people on foot, on bike and in cars. Last but not least, we’ve heard that the city is working on key details to get the San Jose Creek Bike Path and a bike path across Hollister in the near future. Lastly, there are awesome community bike rides being led out of Bicycle Bob's. We're fans of the shops Just for Women rides but you can also head over to their site to check out the full list! In addition, we encourage you to check out Echelon Cycling and the Goleta Valley Cycling Club for more awesome happenings.  

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Portions of Obern Trail closed for repaving this November

This map outlines low-stress neighborhood streets that are adjacent to the Obern. Please note that it's likely that the closure will switch between different sides of Puente Drive during November. 

Bike commuters to U.C.S.B. and bicycling enthusiasts everywhere may have noticed signs on the Obern alerting the public that portions of the Obern Trail will be closed beginning November 4th until December 2nd. SBBIKE is working on getting the full scoop (specific dates and the limits of the closure) and will update this article once we have those details so you can plan accordingly. 

The closure dates are a month long because this isn't a typical repave, the path will be entirely constructed to address serious root damage that has occurred. It does appear that the path may be open on some days during that period. We know this is an important route for many people and thank everyone for their patience while the County of Santa Barbara undertakes this big project. We appreciate all of our readers who are biking to work and doing something that is great for the environment, your health, and our community at large! Bear with us and before you know it, we'll have a fresh new bike path to ride. 

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New Signal In Busy Bike Intersection

Pardall Road in Isla Vista is one of the busiest bicycling routes in Santa Barbara County, with an estimated 15,000 riders a day.  There is so much bike traffic that it sometimes it      became nearly impossible to safely cross .
Santa Barbara County, UCSB Associated Students BIKES committee and CHP recently gathered to inaugurate traffic signals on Pardall to manage the flow and help keep everybody safe. Everyone who stopped at the new red light was served cookies. SBBIKE thanks all involved. Let's hope this stoplight is a new beginning.
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Light up the Night in November

It's the time of year again when the sun sets earlier each day. Soon we'll also be turning the clocks back an hour - meaning more and more workers in Santa Barbara will be commuting home in the dark. Some cyclists aren't prepared, and SBBIKE is there every year to distribute free lights so folks can get home safer. Sign up to volunteer at one of the locations today! We need folks to help wave signs and flag down cyclists, distribute lights, and give our survey. See below for locations and dates.

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The ABC's of E-bike Laws

SBBIKE supports E-bikes which will remove barriers to biking, making it truly easier for anyone to ride the original zero-emission vehicle regardless of fitness, distance or okay-ness with arriving a little sweaty. Recently a SBBIKE member reached out with questions about the laws concerning E-bikes. Below we summarize the basic tenants or the ABC's of E-bike laws. 

A

Almost all E-bikes are allowed on paths, bikes lanes, and city streets. Rideres should follow the same laws as non-E-bike riders including stopping at stops signs, riding with the flow of traffic, and yielding to pedestrians. In Santa Barbara, this also means not biking on the sidewalk! Also, note that anyone under the age of 18 is required to wear a helmet on an e-bike. While some cities require all minors to wear helmets (including Santa Barbara) many do not.  

B

But not if you have a throttle-assisted Class 3 E-bike. In that case, you are not legally allowed on bike paths because it's likely your bicycle can go up to 28 m.p.h. or much faster than many of your path counterparts (families walking, joggers and young children who may be new to riding). 

C

Class 3 makes all the difference E-bikes are divided into 3 classes (see graphic below) which define how and where they can be used. You should find the class of your e-bike stamped on the frame itself. While Classes 1 + 2 are treated just like regular bicycles, Class 3 E-bikes follow stricter rules: Helmet use for Class 3 E-bikes is required. Class 3 E-bikes cannot be ridden by anyone under the age of 16, and Class 3 E-bikes are banned from using Class 1 bike paths (a.k.a. ‘multi-use paths’) but may use bike lanes and protected bike lanes on public roadways.

Class 2 electric bikes that are equipped with a throttle and that can function even without pedaling will be limited to a top assisted speed of 20MPH, however, they will be permitted on bike paths, unlike their faster Class 3 counterparts.

It so happens a Board Member, Frank Peters, was involved in passing the key state legislation that set E-bike regulations. He covers the process and what it took to get there on his blog, Santa Barbara Cyclist.

 

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Bike the Vote 2017: SB Mayor and Council Candidates speak about Santa Barbara Streets

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Bike the Vote helps you get to know our candidates perspectives, goals and vision for Santa Barbara's transportation future, making our streets and community a safer and more enjoyable places to travel and live. SBBIKE invites every candidate to participate by sharing their ideas and perspective. Read on to learn more and note that if you don't see a candidate's responses it is because they didn't return the questionnaire. 

 

Mayor Responses:

 1. In a typical week, How do you choose to travel in Santa Barbara and why? 

Murillo: 

I am multi-modal in my travel habits. I use my car when I have a full calendar, need to get from one event or meeting to another, and always try to carpool if going to a meeting in Buellton or outside of Santa Barbara.

I serve as the City Council liaison to the MTD board of directors. So at least twice a month I ride the bus to experience for myself what it’s like and what we can do better. I go through periods of riding my bike downtown to City Hall, but haven't yet made it a habit. And I regularly walk to the village center in my Westside neighborhood to pick up something at Foodland or get a bite to eat.I 

Conklin: 

I live in close proximity to the center of santa barbara, so i walk as much as possible for shopping and errands.   if i need to attend a meeting across town, i drive my hybrid electric car. 

I live in close proximity to the center of Santa Barbara, so I walk as much as possible for shopping and errands. If I need to attend a meeting across town, I drive my hybrid electric car. 

Martinez

We live downtown. The majority of the time my wife and I walk. I have a Vespa scooter and my wife and I have electric assist bikes we use to run errands. I also bike recreationally and drive my car when going to Goleta or farther.

Hotchkiss: (response to entire Bike the vote questionnaire) 

The best reply I can give the Bike Coalition is the Bicycle Master Plan. The Coalition was at first not cooperative and insisted on its preferred routes, but relented after Randy Rowse and I joined the Micheltorena Neighborhood residents to pressure the cyclist lobby to be more inclusive in their proposals. That led to broader community support for the plan, which then passed council.

In the future I encourage the Coalition to remember the negative publicity it gained during this debate, and to come to the table with considerations broader than just its own.

2. Please briefly explain your thoughts and vision for the future of transportation in Santa Barbara. (100 words or less, bullet points okay)

Murillo:

As Mayor I am also committed to having a City that feels safe and convenient for riding a bike. So many people say they would ride a bike -- to work or for fun -- if they felt safer. I am also committed to implementing projects in the updated Bicycle Master Plan without delay. And I know the Bicycle Coalition is developing a bike share program -- a great idea that I support! I would like to see an exploration and expansion of other successful bicycle programs such as the bike parking kiosk program like the one opposite El Presidio. And I will support programs such as the Bike Coalition’s efforts distributing and promoting bike lights, helmets, rider education etc.

Enhanced biking is a key part of my vision that our City must continue to expand, in combination with enhancing all modes of transportation to increase transportation and walking safety, reliability, and affordability. I’m determined to update our Pedestrian Master Plan. I also support our Car Sharing program and hope our residents will take advantage of this convenient opportunity. At the Earth Day festival, I tour the renewable/alternative fuel vehicle collection and try to stay on top of new technologies. I am in the process of setting up a meeting with a representative from the California Fuel Cell Partnership to get an update on hydrogen and fuel cell electric vehicles.
Conklin:
Transportation needs to be radically reoriented to a much more robust set of mobility options, including possibly a state of the art alternatively-fueled light rail system between downtown santa barbara, goleta, and ucsb.  we need a south coast bicycle masterplan transportation system that includes giving over 50% of certain thuroghfares to bicycles (such as state street downtown).  we need to build additional housing adjecent to where the next generation of jobs will be so people can walk to work and get out of their cars.  i believe that the technological revolution that has made lyft and uber possible will expand to provide on-demand inexpensive mobility for people to not need to purchase a car.
 
Martinez: 
I feel the advent of UBER, LYFT and the inevitability of self-driving cars, improved local mass transit, and the next generation’s preference for options beyond automobiles will change our transportation landscape significantly. The city has begun the task of providing infrastructure and programs that support alternative transportation, biking, and walking but we can, and must, do better. I feel we should be looking out into the future to better understand how these changes will affect our land use priorities for the generation, particularly all of the land currently designated for parking lots and structures. 
3. What are 3 suggestions for making Santa Barbara a safer and friendlier place to ride a bike?
Murillo: 
1. We need a safe and well-designed East-West connector; the Sola Alternative received much support from the community, and I'm glad our Council voted to apply for the Alternative Transportation Program grant, which will bring $7.2 million for pay for Eastside and Westside bicycle projects.
2. The City must continue to support Safe-Routes-to-School and other programs that encourage children and teens to ride a bike safely. And our City would benefit from a strong outreach and education program encouraging vehicles to share the road and respect bicyclists. 
3. By the same token, bicyclists should be encouraged to know and obey traffic laws, as critics of alternative transportation point to a bicyclist running a stop sign as an excuse to be anti-bicycle.
Conklin: 
    • Close downtown State Street to automobiles and make it a “quiet transportation corridor.”
    • Give financial incentives to people to use alternative transportation, including financial breaks for NOT needing a parking space for shopping, work, or home.
    • Build a real bicycle corridor between UCSB and Santa Barbara City College.

Martinez: 

    • More early education for future drivers about sharing the road and the use of cell phones and other distractions while driving.
    • Frequent maintenance of our bike infrastructure, lane striping, street lighting, etc. Segregating bike lanes from vehicle lanes more effectively, including using little traveled streets for bike routes and painting the lane surface in high traffic zones.
    • City parks and recreation programs and encourage healthy lifestyles for our youth that provide bike safety and bikes as a transportation alternative education.

 

4. The Santa Barbara Bicycle Master Plan includes several unfunded projects under phase 1: Planned project to begin before 2020 (Approximately $365,240 not including bike share and other opportunities). As mayor, would you work to identify and secure funding for these projects and how? 

Murillo:

The City must always be creative in finding funding for alternative transportation projects. Our City staff has been highly successful in securing grants and finding design options that result in cost savings. As Mayor, I will work with community members through public-private partnerships to secure funding, and find opportunities during our budget process.

Conklin:

in a 200 million dollar budget, that is an insignificant amount of money to pay compared to the cost of building a new parking garage – each one of which costs the city ten million dollars.  it would be “penny wise, and pound foolish” to not fund the master plan recommendations.

Martinez: 

Yes, but I would need to better understand how this fits into all the city’s financial obligations and program accordingly. That said, I would look to other cities, such as Davis, CA, where I went to school, for insight into budget reprioritization from cars to alternatives over time. 

5. If the proposed Infrastructure Sales Tax Measure (Measure C) is approved by voters in November, would you support including installing bike lanes identified in the 2016 Santa Barbara Bicycle Master Plan as streets undergo their scheduled pavement maintenance?

Murillo: 

The results of the polling done by the City for this measure was clear: voters want smooth and well-maintained streets, and that should be a priority for this revenue source. And we can all agree that smooth, well-maintained streets also benefit bicycle travel. 

That said, assuming Measure C passed, it would make sense to include some bicycle lane and route improvements as part of road maintenance, especially where traffic safety and circulation would be enhanced for all. For example, in some instances, creating greater separation of bikes from motor vehicles can actually enhance safety and convenience for both bicyclists and motorists. Measure C funding should allow us to explore and implement best transportation practices as we upgrade and maintain our roads. Overall, the Measure C revenue would give more "breathing room" in the General Fund and help all the functions, including alternative transportation projects, competing for tax-based funding.
Conklin: 

of course!

Martinez: 

Yes, as long as it is consistent with the voter’s expectations on how this money is to be spent AND there is enough funding to meet all those expectations.

 City Council Candidate Responses: 

1. SBBIKE: In a typical week, How do you choose to travel in Santa Barbara and why?

 

District 6: 

Ucciferri:

My wife and I are fortunate to have set up lifestyle such that we only have one car and we don’t drive it much. We often only drive it on the weekends, when we go up to the Goodland Hotel for AM yoga followed by a Costco run. Moving the car on street sweeping days is a pain, but we’ve got that pretty dialed-in with the help of escalating Google Calendar reminders.

I’ve had a membership with Zipcar for a few months but have yet to use it. I have an informal carshare arrangement with a friend to borrow a nicer car when I need to show a client a home (I’m a Realtor).

I used to ride around town on a hybrid commuter/rode bike that was a regular presence at Bici Centro because I rode that thing hard. That got stolen out of my backyard a few months back (on the day after I declared my candidacy - mere coincidence?). So I switched to my classic 1952 beachcruiser and rode that around for roughly a month. Then that got stolen outside of the Brazil Arts Cafe.

Now I am down to a bike I bought it for $100 for a friend from Bici Centro a few years ago but that he has never ridden. I’ve appropriated it and added a rear baby seat. I love this bike as much as any other I’ve ever owned thanks to the father-son memories it gives us everyday.

Hart: 

I travel in Santa Barbara by car, foot, and bicycle. When quickly commuting between distant locations I’m forced to commute by car.  I appreciate the ability to walk and bike around our beautiful downtown area - especially District 6. I typically walk about five miles per day. I keep a bicycle and helmet in my City Hall office, and although I don’t get to take it out as much as I’d like to, I do enjoy being able to ride a bicycle around the community.  I’m also a big supporter of the City’s sustainable transportation efforts for employees, which include the promotion of biking to work.  I’m committed to making our City more cyclist and pedestrian friendly. 

District 5: 

Friedman:

In a typical week I ride my bike, walk and drive.  When I ride my bike it is mostly to work.  I also take weekend rides with my two sons.  As for walking, I walk with my sons to school every morning.  Round trip is about 1.5 miles.  In addition to walking and biking, my family also drives. With my family being a two-income family with constantly changing work and recreation schedules, we have to use a car but balance it with biking and walking when possible. 

District 4:

Higgins:  

Last night my son and I skateboarded to our friend’s house for dinner. We also walk to school (Peabody). Other than that we do a lot of driving to San Marcos (for my daughter) and to all of our family’s sports/teams’ practices and games to Goleta and beyond. Since my office is downtown, sometimes I will use MTD. I also commute to Ojai 2x per week for a consulting job I have with the City of Ojai in their Planning Department (where we just developed and passed a revised Complete Streets Policy). Several years ago, I lived on the Mesa and did not own a car (for over a year). So I know what it’s like to have to rely on MTD, a bike and my feet. 

Sneddon: 

In a typical week, I drive, carpool, and walk in Santa Barbara. I have three children and two jobs. The class I teach at City College lets out with 10 minutes to get from SBCC Campus to High School Campus and simultaneously across town to elementary campus for pickups after school (driving days). My son often skateboards where he needs to go, my daughter and I walk to school on Fridays, and my husband often bikes to work. 

Scafide:

First, I am an avid cyclist: I regularly commute to and from work by bike, and I am a weekend cyclist.  In every trip I undertake, I first try to walk.  If I cannot walk, I try to either bike or take public transportation.  I prefer biking, if possible and safe.  Unfortunately, often biking in Santa Barbara is an unsafe endeavor.  I believe Santa Barbara must do more to promote alternative transportation, including investing in alternative transportation infrastructure and funding the Bicycle Master Plan.  Also, unfortunately, public transportation does not service my neighborhood, so that is not often an option I can take for my day-to-day commute.  If I cannot walk, bike, or take public transportation, I drive my Smart Car.  I ride share (Lyft, etc.) and carpool whenever possible.  As a dedicated and committed environmentalist, I make a conscious decision to reduce my carbon footprint whenever possible.

 

2. Please briefly explain your thoughts and vision for the future of transportation in Santa Barbara. (100 words or less, bullet points okay)

 

District 6: 

Ucciferri:

  • Stopping the proposed freeway widening. The additional cars on our surface streets would total overwhelm all of the progress we at SBBike are hoping to achieve with the BMP. Ironically, it would also would not address freeway gridlock either. According to Santa Barbara City Transportation Dept. models, it would make gridlock worse if you are driving between SB and Goleta. (see attached)
  • Replacing the N-S 101 car traffic BRT and/or commuter rail from Oxnard-Goleta
  • Bikesharing and carsharing 
  • An electric trolley running up and down State St., which is largely closed to cars - as I outline in this op-ed.
  • Class 1 bikeways everywhere possible
  • Robust bicycle and car driver education classes

 

Hart: 

  • Complete the projects called for in the Bicycle Master Plan to better integrate our existing bicycle infrastructure, implement new bike boulevards and lanes, and make the City of Santa Barbara more bicycle friendly
  • Increase bus service provided by the MTD and better connect our local bus system with regional transportation partners
  • Develop new housing that is affordable for local workers and located near mass transit, bicycle lanes, and local businesses that can be accessed without driving
  • Develop a passenger rail service to run at peak hours between southern Santa Barbara County and Ventura County

 

District 5: 

Friedman: 

Santa Barbara should be at the forefront of alternative transportation innovation.  This includes bike sharing and car sharing services as well as access to affordable transportation. Investment in infrastructure, in particular the bicycle masterplan and creating housing that is located near services would provide multiple options for transportation.  

District 4:

Higgins:

Active streets and sidewalks are the key ingredients to a vibrant streetscape, economic development and healthy communities. We clearly have to make our streets more conducive to other forms of transportation. This is key for other ethnic groups, people that may not be able to afford (or want) a vehicle, children (for their health) and seniors (that cannot drive or that want to walk). 

The BMP is in place, but needs funding, and our sales tax, if approved, will be critical in this regard. Housing opportunities downtown will also provide more political ‘will’ via actual residents there that will grow and voice support for ongoing multi modal improvements. Closing State Street to vehicles on an occasional and regular basis for street fairs should be on our immediate agenda! 

Sneddon: 

 Santa Barbara needs more options and more efficiency in multiple and alternative transportation modes. With MTD ridership down, there is a narrower reach of buses, which creates a feedback loop hindering both. I can envision a fleet of smaller electric vans that cycle through more often, and can be routed up into the hills, and into more remote areas. I like zip cars, and we need more of them. I would like to see new construction plumbed for electric vehicles and equipped with solar panels for charging. I would also like to see more protected bike lanes that are integrated throughout the city and interconnecting existing bike lanes. An expanded bike share program would be fantastic. I would also like to support more options via rail to connect to other cities. 

Scafide:

  1.  A greater investment in alternative transportation infrastructure, including and especially for bicycles including dedicated bike paths and implementation of the Bicycle Master Plan;
  2. Increased usage of mass transport, including commuter rail services up and down the Central Coast.
  3. Reduced reliance on automobiles for transportation and the rise of autonomous vehicles, which will better share the road with other forms of transportation.  
3. What are 3 suggestions for making Santa Barbara a safer and friendlier place to ride a bike?

District 6: 

Ucciferri:

  1. I’d reclaim the bike path along the sand at Cabrillo Blvd as a bike only artery.
  2. Incorporating better driver education rights/responsibilities/and mutual benefits of cars and bikes into all drivers’ ed classes.
  3. I’d fully implement the Bike Master Plan ASAP, with my own tweaks, such as making Olive St. a bike boulevard instead of hilly Laguna. In addition, Santa Barbara could benefit in huge ways from bike share that could take the place of short local car trips on our street by giving a quick and easy way to ride a bike instead.
  4. I’d solve the Castillo underpass issue - oh wait - SBBIKE already did that! Thank you so so so much.

Hart: 

I believe that the City of Santa Barbara must work to implement the projects of the Bicycle Master Plan, especially phase 1 projects, as quickly as possible.  As the City Council Liaison to the Fire and Police Commission, I believe that we must work with local law enforcement to identify areas of high risk for cyclists, and conduct appropriate enforcement and education operations for motorists.  Additionally, I believe that it is time for the City of Santa Barbara to have a bicycle sharing program.  Many other world class destinations have successful bicycle sharing programs, and I believe that it must be a priority to bring such a program to Santa Barbara.

District 5: 

Friedman: 

  1. Enforcement of traffic laws for both vehicles and bicyclists.  I have witnessed many cars run red lights or drive too close to bikes as well as bicyclists not obeying traffic laws which leads to more aggressive driving
  2. More bike parking near businesses, such as Handle Bar on Cannon Perdido, and in public places such as parks, beaches and community centers. 
  3. Dedicated bike lanes especially on alternative routes such as using Sola rather than Mitcheltorena.  Using streets with fewer cars on them as primary bicycle routes makes sense.  The example of Sola, which I rode for 5 years when I commuted from the Westside to Downtown is much safer than Mitcheltorena due to the lower volume of traffic.  

District 4:

Higgins: 

Less reliance in our zoning code for surface parking associated with developments (eg. ‘unbundled’ or reduced parking ratios, and please see my op-ed attached on this subject). Housing downtown (see above discussion). More police enforcement of traffic safety laws. We need to better fund school outreach and programs for helmets, safety, et. al. OK, that’s four I know… but sometimes I ride on the sidewalk too. 

Sneddon: 

  • More protected bike lanes, not a narrow path along where car doors swing out
  • More connected bike lanes, expand existing infrastructure for connectivity and bike share
  • Implement the Bicycle Master Plan and Vision Zero recommendations! 

Scafide:

  1. Dedicated bike paths
  2. Modifying the alignment of bike lanes on shared transportation routes from pedestrian, parked vehicle, bike path, vehicle lane to be pedestrian, bike path, parked vehicle, vehicle lane.
  3. More facilities for cyclists
4. The Santa Barbara Bicycle Master Plan includes several unfunded projects under phase 1: Planned project to begin before 2020 (Approximately $365,240 not including bike share and other opportunities). As mayor, would you work to identify and secure funding for these projects and how? 

District 6: 

Ucciferri:

I will place implementation of the BMP as among my very highest priorities. 

I think bike/ped infrastructure is valuable enough to our tourist-oriented economy that a portion of the Transient Occupancy Tax should be designated to BMP implementation. Also, while researching to write the South Coast Bike Share Master Plan, I  met a few people who know have to navigate the world of public funding sources will amazing adeptness and I’ll lean on them.

Hart:

In 2015, I championed the City’s adoption of the Bicycle Master Plan and successfully lobbied the California Transportation Commission to fund the implementation of this program.  I will continue to pursue state funding, and as a proponent of Measure C, I will work to allocate new revenue for bicycle infrastructure improvements if approved.

District 5: 

Friedman:

Should the one cent sales tax pass on the November ballot, annual revenue should include funding projects identified within the Bicycle Master Plan.  In addition, we also need to look at projects that are candidates for public private partnerships.  These projects would be identified as ideal to receive outside grant funding and/or have support from local individuals and organizations in which the City could provide funds that would be matched.  

District 4:

Higgins: 

Even if the sales tax is passed, we will still need more funding for BMP infrastructure. We must chase matching funding sources from the State, and we should be lobbying our State and Federal relationships heavily in this regard. 

Sneddon: 

Yes, as councilmember, I would work to identify and secure funding for these projects. Senate Bill 1 will do a lot for bicycle and pedestrian improvements through set-aside funds. The Active Transportation Program is also a strong source of funding. I support Measure A sales tax going to improve safe routes to schools and bicycle and pedestrian improvements. The Bicycle Coalition has done tremendous work expanding education and programs, and I would like to work together to secure whatever additional funding is necessary. 

Scafide:

Yes, I would.  I would require that bicycle transportation be included as part of the consideration for every transportation expenditure.  I believe that the City should lead in this area and invest in bicycle infrastructure, creating a system that will not only support existing ridership, but encourage additional ridership.  I reject the position that “not enough people ride bikes to justify investment” as a function of City Government is to modify behavior by policies and investments. I believe Santa Barbara as a community should be a leader in alternative transportation, including bicycle systems. 

5. If the proposed Infrastructure Sales Tax Measure (Measure C) is approved by voters in November, would you support including installing bike lanes identified in the 2016 Santa Barbara Bicycle Master Plan as streets undergo their scheduled pavement maintenance?

District 6: 

Ucciferri:

Yes.

Hart: 

In order to implement the improvements called for in the Bicycle Master Plan, I will absolutely support the simultaneous installation of bike lanes during scheduled street maintenance.  Making these improvements in a coordinated fashion will ensure the greatest possible efficiency in repairing our infrastructure and making cycling a safer and more accessible method of transportation and recreation in the City of Santa Barbara.

District 5: 

Friedman: 

I support this effort.  However, we need to learn from the lessons of Mitcheltorena and work with neighborhoods and bicyclists to address impacts to ensure that the safest routes are identified.  As noted in a previous question, I commuted along the Mitcheltorena/Sola route for 5 years.  Even if there had been dedicated bike lanes on Mitcheltorena, I would have used Sola simply due to the volume of traffic. Just because there are dedicated bike lanes doesn’t mean traffic laws are obeyed or accidents won’t occur. As a community we all need to work together to ensure that bikes, cars and pedestrians all share the road and the safest routes for bike lanes are identified.  

District 4:

Higgins: 

Yes. 

Lastly, let me say that multi modality in our ROW's is very important to me, having a significant background in this matter on behalf of the American Planning Association. I've also supported the BMP, and voted for it while on the Planning Commission. I've been involved with the City on this issue particularly in my own neighborhood as you will see from the attachments (1. Petition Signatures for the BMP and 2. correspondence to the City Public Works Dept from 2012). I do not believe your organization can endorse candidates b/c of its structure as a 501.c.3. However, I would greatly appreciate your support and advocacy as you are able. The other candidates running for the 4th District are likely equally as supportive of your group’s objectives. So consider then that the greater may not be advocacy; rather, funding sources. I believe I am better suited, as an independent and moderate candidate to build relationships and collaboration on the Council for BMP (etc.) funding. In this regard, the 

Chamber of Commerce agrees – please see their endorsement of me in the 4th District race. 

“[Jay Higgins’] … experience will help him build coalitions within the council to move the needle on important issues… not the least of which is to ensure a vibrant downtown for locals and visitors alike.” Santa Barbara Region Chamber of Commerce. 

Sneddon:  

Yes! This is a highly efficient way to improve bicycle mobility and safety by modifying existing infrastructure to be more bike friendly. As City Council is re-envisioning State Street and Downtown, we should also be re-envisioning safe bike arteries to reach Downtown. Improved pavement maintenance is a public safety issue and improves quality of life and bicycle safety. 

Scafide:

I would.  As stated above, I would require that bicycle transportation be included as part of the consideration for every transportation expenditure.  Again, the future of our planet relies on our efforts to reduce our carbon footprints, and the City of Santa Barbara should be a leader in providing opportunities for its residents to reduce their individual footprints.  Sure, cycling is fun and makes one fit.  But it is also good for the planet.

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Towbes Group Puts Tools in Peoples' Hands

As more than one third of Willow Springs residents are affiliated with UCSB as faculty, students or staff, bicycling to the Copenhagen like campus just got one step easier. Willow Springs, operated by the Towbes Group, decided to effectively give about $60 worth of tools to each bicycle wielding resident. No, they aren't delivering a truck load of tool kits, but instead installing an all weather permanent 'fix-it' station,  complete with a bicycle stand, air pump, and suspended tools and levers.

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Going Car-Free in Santa Barbara

 

Contemplating taking the leap?
After living car-free in Santa Barbara the last five years, I’d like to share my experiences along with the lifestyle advantages and disadvantages. These insights may help other who are contemplating going car-free or car-light.

The obvious advantages

1.  Financial – as long as you don’t overdo it with car rentals, Zipcars, and Uber, you’ll probably come out ahead; I certainly have – maybe as much as $500 per month.

2.  No more fretting about car parking.

3.  I may never wash a car again.

4.  For those of us who have little enthusiasm for gym workouts, walking and bicycling are a godsend.

5. Maybe best of all, I have room in the garage for more bikes!

Of course, there are a few challenges

1.  Although I have used my cargo bike to carry groceries, Christmas trees, a wheelbarrow, and various grandchildren, some things cannot be carried on a bike. (Does that sound like a challenge to some folks?)

2.  Weather is usually not an issue here, but I’m not a fan of riding in the rain at night. One or the other is ok, but not both at the same time.

3.  The lack of safe routes in some areas.  For example, if you want to get from Santa Barbara to anywhere in the Santa Ynez Valley; the lack of a safe cycling route or public transportation make this quite a challenge!

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So, anyone interested in taking the car free (or “car-light”) plunge? Here’s my humble advice: 

First, do a little research regarding the availability of public transportation in your area.

  • Zipcar, our new car share system, is a great addition to SB’s transportation system that lets you rent a car cheaply and quickly for trips as small as an hour to longer trips. 

  • Whether you’re going completely car-free or downsizing from two cars to one, try it for a couple of weeks before actually making that sale/donation.

  • Overall, going car-free is very do-able in SB. I ride or walk year-round, since we really have no severe weather.

  • All of my other transportation needs in the last five years have been met by public transportation via SBMTD, Amtrak Train Service, VCTC service and occasional car rentals. This is getting easier and better, SB Carfree offers 20% off your Amtrak ticket and SBMTD recently launched an app showing where your bus is all the time.  

What would make it easier? To encourage more people to be less dependent on cars, we need to improve our bicycle infrastructure and public transportation, including commuter rail.

See you all on the road or trail – keep the rubber side down!   

Mark Sapp is a long-standing resident of Santa Barbara and member of SBBIKE. Five years ago, Mark and his wife Nancy donated their only car (a small pickup truck) to the blossoming Bici Centro shop and took the car-free plunge. 

 

 

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Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition
P.O. Box 92047, Santa Barbara, CA 93190
506 E. Haley Street, Santa Barbara, CA 93103
805.845.8955