November 2010 Spokes Canterbury Newsletter
November 2010 Spokes Canterbury Newsletter
The Kennett Brothers and The Cycle Trading Company,
INVITE you to attend the launch of a biography on
New Zealand's most outstanding cycle tourer,
The Cycle Trading Company
27 Manchester Street
7:00pm, Thursday, 18th November, 2010
Drinks, nibbles and cycling displays provided
Books will be signed by the author
Louise was a small woman with a big heart who became a cycling legend without winning a single race. In 1978 she became the first person ever to cycle right across Brazil, through the Amazon Jungle.
BUS DRIVERS SWAP SEATS WITH CYCLISTS
In mid-October, Environment Canterbury hosted a Bus-Bike Interaction Workshop, which invited regular cyclists and bus drivers to take a look from the other side of the windscreen.
The workshop, facilitated by Glen Koorey of the Cycling Advocates Network (CAN), consisted mostly of practical exercises, with discussions and opportunities to exchange views throughout.
"The aim of the workshop was to improve understanding between cyclists and bus drivers. It was the first of its kind in Christchurch, following similar successful events in Auckland and Wellington, but it could be the first of many here," says Glen.
Cyclists got to experience some bus operations up close, including seeing the view from the bus driver's seat, and hear about the everyday challenges that drivers face. Participants in the workshop then followed a 6km cycle route around Christchurch City, with each cyclist buddying up with a bus driver to talk about potential traffic/safety issues along the route.
Cyclists commented on how difficult it is for bus drivers to see behind and to the side, exactly where cyclists tend to be.
Alex Bateman, a planner with Abley Transportation Consultants said that you can tell straight away when you talk to them, that bus drivers are well trained professionals who take the stresses of the road in their stride.
"It was a little different out on the bikes though. My bus driver buddy said it was a relief to get out from the main traffic and into a bike lane where he felt a bit safer".
"It was amazing to see how quickly people's viewpoints change once they can see the road through other eyes."
"There was plenty of discussion and helpful suggestions from the people who took part. I think that everyone learned something new or was able to take something positive away with them," says Glen.
"From the feedback session, everyone agreed that considerate road use and a little courtesy goes a long way."
* Thanks to Environment Canterbury, our three bus companies, and the volunteers from Spokes for making this event happen!
* A news item about the workshop on CTV can be found at:
SCHOOLS AND STYLE THE WINNERS AT ASB CYCLE FRIENDLY AWARDS
Getting more children biking regularly and promoting fashionable cycling were common themes of New Zealand's top cycling projects this year.
Greater Wellington Regional Council Chair Fran Wilde presented the ASB Cycle Friendly Awards at Wellington Town Hall on Oct 29th. The awards are organised by the Cycling Advocates Network (CAN).
The winners, who each received bike bell trophies, were:
Avanti Best Cycle Facility Project: "Bikes in Schools" (St Mary's School, Hastings)
Canterbury District Health Board Best Cycling Promotion Project: "Auckland Cycle Style" - an evening of fabulous bikes and fashion (Frocks on Bikes)
NZ Transport Agency Cycle Friendly Commitment by a Business: Mamachari Bicycles, Wellington
ViaStrada Cycle Friendly Commitment by a Public Organisation: "Cycle to school programme" (Belmont Intermediate School, North Shore, Auckland)
Greater Wgtn Regional Council Cycling Champion of the Year: Paul McArdle and Meg Frater (Bike On NZ, Hastings)
Details of all winners and finalists are at http://can.org.nz/awards2010
* Well done to Selwyn District Council, whose "Selwyn Bikewise Month" was a finalist in the Best Cycling Promotion category!
* Many thanks to Spokes core members Dirk De Lu, who was Awards Coordinator this year, and Glen Koorey, who was MC for the evening.
ANNEX RD CYCLE/ PEDESTRIAN SUBWAY CLOSURE
For people who sometimes use the Annex Rd Subway to get across to Riccarton from the SW or S side of town, note that this is currently closed while the Southern Motorway is under construction. It will reopen no later than 23rd December, however it will be closed again sometime in the new year for a further 2 weeks (Dates as yet undecided).
The cycle route along Curletts Rd can be used as an alternative, although it may be worth knowing that currently there are sections of loose shingle to negotiate which make it vaguely uncomfortable and it adds to the time it takes to get through.
SPOKES MEETING WITH NZTA STATE HIGHWAYS
Spokes will be meeting soon with NZTA State Highway staff to discuss issues relating cycling on Canterbury's state highway network. This includes Christchurch's ring road network (SH1/73/73A/74/74A); spur links out to Rangiora (SH71), Lyttelton (SH74) and Halswell/Akaroa (SH75), as well as the rural highways around the district (SH1/7/7A/8/73/77/79).
We're compiling a list of issues to raise with NZTA, in terms of operational / maintenance issues and future planning/design (yes, including the afore-mentioned Annex Road!).
If anyone has any points they wish to be raised please contact Glen Koorey (glen[at]can[dot]org[nz]) by Sun Nov 14th. If your concern relates to a specific location, please try to be as precise as possible.
CHRISTCHURCH TRANSPORT PLAN
The city is reworking all their transport policies into a cohesive single plan. This laudable goal is to have everyone working from the same policy framework.
While not yet at the public consultation stage Spokes has been keen to help the city understand the needs and desires of people who cycle.
Spokes developed a cohesive cycle strategy a number of years ago and I extract from it here.
Measures are not listed in order of priority as an integrated approach incorporating all these actions and outcomes is needed. Spokes regularly attempts to see projects in support of this vision adopted.
Encourage Cycling through sensible development planning. Design our communities so residents can live, work and shop in their own neighbourhoods
Lower speed limits in congested and residential areas
Make the CBD cycle friendly through speed reduction, safe cycle routes, adequate and secure cycle parking
Finish the cycle network, link routes together, maintain and enhance existing routes
Identify and improve dangerous intersections, pinch points, remove unsafe parking and expand bike bus rack capacity and coverage
Create off road or separate from road cycle paths. Take advantage of areas along rivers, rail ways and parks
Develop and promote model cycle paths, ways, routes and be prepared to meet the growing demand safe infrastructure stimulates
Promote safe and courteous road use by all and back it up with enforcement
Promote all types of cycling all year round
A what? A Ciclovia is a bike route, ciclo=bike, via=route. Cities around the world are closing streets to cars, usually for a day, but some for good, and letting people experience riding safely in their community. Check out Portland's Sunday Parkways
What would it be like to cycle down Colombo or Worcester without cars? Perhaps create a circular route of closed streets for a grand promenade. Include a street festival to herald the end of earthquakes and to encourage us all to rebuild a safe sustainable city.
Contact Editor [at] spokes [dot] org [dot] nz if you have an interest in organizing/helping.
Ride placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in separated cycle lanes. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all car drivers. Ring your bell considerately and clearly; and listen to others, even the trucks and taxis; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive 2GB schlock jocks; they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with TDF riders, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser cyclists than yourself. Enjoy your commuting as well as your weekend tours. Keep interested in your own kind of cycling, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of traffic planning.
Exercise caution in your dealings with the RTA, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; Clover Moore strives for high ideals, and everywhere the bicycle couriers are full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign being able to ride a fixie. Neither be cynical about steel frames; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment they are as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the Colnago for a three-speed with sprung saddle. Nurture strength of quadriceps to shield you in hilly terrain. But do not distress yourself over Mandatory Helmet Laws. Many fears are born of fatigue and Nanny Society misinformation.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with your carbon fibres. You are a child of Bicycle 2.0, no less than the buses and SUVs; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you no doubt the cycling infrastructure is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with the Chinese, they probably made your bike, and whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of George Street at 6pm keep pace with the man with rubber pedals ahead of you.
With all its shards of glass, potholes and broken derailleurs, It is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to ride every day.
(Found in Old Saint Garry's Bike Shed, Brookvale 1692)
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