Tagged: bike advocacy

 

Munich is one of the most beautiful, bike-friendly cities in Germany! Famous for its Oktoberfest where beer and girdles overflow, the place doesn’t get nearly enough the credit it deserves for its cycling routes and infrastructure. If you like getting on your bike and exploring, weekend breaks to Munich are a necessary and thoroughly enjoyable pastime. Here are a few ideas which will help you discover a side of Bavaria’s capital besides pale ale and leather shorts.
munich
If you don’t mind biking in urban environments, the downtown area is a great place to start your explorations. Try a “Tour of the Tors”! “Tor” is the German word for “gate” (oh, and for “goal” in soccer”!), and Munich’s old town had a good number of those. They’re all within a kilometer of each other, sometimes less, and if you go through them in succession, you’ll circumscribe the area behind the old fortification walls.

Keep in mind that some of the old gates no longer exist, but Sendlinger Tor, Karlstor, Türkentor, Siegestor, and Isartor still keep you running along the historically correct perimeter. In May 2014, an art project was launched to remind locals and visitors of the “lost gates” — the ones which wars and old age took down. You might come across curious art installations where you can stop by for a minute and read up on the missing pieces in Munich’s gate puzzle.

After a good time downtown, there are few things better than resting your eyes with some nature gazing. As industrial and rich as it is, Munich offers parks with sprawling fields and meandering bike and walking paths. The most famous destination is the English Garden, a green symphony of nature with 78 kilometers (yup, Europe is metric!) of biking routes. You can enjoy the sun or slip into the forested paths. Make your way to the Chinese Tower, one of Munich’s most legendary beer gardens, and have a well-earned break.

Another terrific biking destination is the Olympia Park not too far from the city center. A beautiful bridge with glass railings brings you to the start of your tour, and you can put your stamina to the test with several gentle slopes on your way to the park’s heart: the Olympic Stadium and the BMW Arena and Museum nearby. This route offers mostly sunny tracks and open spaces, with some culture and fun on the side for when you want to rest. A classic Munich bike tour, through and through!

olympia park

Munich is something of a cyclist’s paradise. You can get in some serious cycling while still cramming in the chance to experience culture.

 

Oh, man, I’m gonna catch heat for this…seein’ as how Mir’s birthday was YESTERDAY.

In any case, please wish staff writer and Bikecommuters.com’s go-to humorist a very happy (and belated) birthday!

Here’s Mir jumping over a hotdog:

Mir
Yep, she’s THAT rad.

Please join us for a slice of virtual birthday cake, and raise a glass to Mir.

bike-cake

Here are a couple of really cool Indiegogo “crowdfunding” projects that caught our eye of late.

The first is Cycling CEO, a company that develops cycling/health and wellness programs for businesses:

Cycling CEO is the first company to design, implement and manage comprehensive corporate cycling programs for employees and executive teams.Fitness programs have shown to deliver a $3 to $6 dollar return for every $1 invested.


The benefits of our corporate cycling programs include:
•Employees can spend quality time with each other discussing/solving business challenges
•Advances social relationships
•Promotes a healthy lifestyle
•Relieves daily stress
•Renews energy
•Promotes a positive corporate image in the community
•Support charitable causes through team participation in events​

Cycling CEO’s Indiegogo page can be found by clicking here. It’s a neat project — and healthier employees are definitely more effective employees! Still, I’d like to see some focus on the transportation benefits of cycling to work rather than pure recreational “team bonding” exercises Cycling CEO concentrates on.

——————————————————————-

The second project is called The Long Bike Back, a documentary about Pearson Constantino. Here’s Pearson in his own words:

I’m a bike commuter from New York city and in June 2006 I was injured in a hit-and-run crash while biking to work. Two years later despite constant pain I biked across America to advocate for safer roads, improved bicycle infrastructure and to hopefully inspire folks to get out and ride more.

My recovery, trip and advocacy efforts were filmed for a documentary called The Long Bike Back which is now nearly ready for release! It is our hope that you would check it out and help spread the word about our film and our Indiegogo campaign with your network so that we can get this film to the widest audience possible.

And the trailer for the documentary:

If you want to support The Long Bike Back project, visit their Indiegogo page by clicking here.

The potential merger of the U.S.’s three main national “bike” advocacy groups – Alliance for Biking & Walking, Bikes Belong, and the League of American Bicyclists – that we announced here back in February is now on hold… for now. The leaders of the three groups “have decided not to pursue full unification at this time.”

As announced in the press release on all three sites:

The three groups continue to operate independently, in close collaboration, to make bicycling safer and more enjoyable for all Americans…

…The three groups continue to work together and have committed to achieving the following benchmark goals by 2020:
1. The nationwide percentage of trips made by bike will increase to five percent (from one percent in 2012), and the diversity of people on bikes will mirror the diversity of America;
2. Traffic injuries and fatalities (in all modes) will decrease by 50 percent;
3. Half of all Americans will have front-door access to a bicycling network that will take them to destinations within two miles exclusively on low-stress streets, lanes, and trails—protected from high-speed traffic.

The leaders of all three groups began the unification discussion fully aware of the challenges of blending unique legal structures, membership bases, project priorities, and headquarters locations. While these talks didn’t produce a merger, the groups will continue to work together to engage, represent and connect the many different elements of the bicycling movement. They will focus on federal, state, and local projects that best improve bike infrastructure and safety in the United States.

Seems that the “super advocacy group” will not likely emerge any time soon.

It won’t deter me from pursuing my own volunteerism within the bike community or stop me from supporting each of these groups separately. What about you?

The following came from a press release issued by the League of American Bicyclists…entitled “Top 10 Reasons Congress Must Preserve Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs”:

“For the past 20 years, local elected officials have had access to state transportation funds through a handful of federal programs for bicycling and walking initiatives: Safe Routes to School, Transportation Enhancements and Recreational Trails. They account for just 1.5 percent of the overall federal transportation bill and have all been heavily over-subscribed since their creation.

Despite the overwhelming success and popularity of these programs, House Republican leadership and a handful of influential Senators have waged an unexplained and inexplicable vendetta against these programs — not to save the government any money, just to prevent state or local governments spending their money on these specific programs and activities, removing any vestige of local control over transportation investments.

Here are our top ten reasons why members of Congress must reject these small-minded and vindictive attacks.

:

To read the list (including a couple of “surprises”…the U.S. Military supports Safe Routes to School? Wow!), please visit the LAB blog by clicking here.