Silver Spring Celebrates its First Protected Bike Lane

On Saturday, October 14, more than 70 bike advocates and neighbors gathered with county officials in Woodside Urban Park to celebrate the completion of Silver Spring’s first protected bike lanes on Spring Street and Cedar Street. After schmoozing with stakeholders and excited conversations, councilmembers Roger Berliner, Tom Hucker and Hans Riemer, Montgomery County Department of Transportation Director Al Roshdieh, Planning Board Chair Casey Anderson and WABA Board Member Peter Gray spoke about the event’s significance and enjoyed many well-deserved rounds of applause. After cutting the ribbon on the new lanes, we all embarked on the maiden voyage, joyfully riding the length of the protected bike lanes and returning along Wayne Ave and Second Ave, the future home of Silver Spring’s 2nd protected bike lane.

Events like this capture advocacy at its finest. Government officials experienced firsthand the passion of their constituents and the delight, and new connections, such projects generate.  About 55 bicyclists safely and comfortably traveled along a main Silver Spring corridor, showcasing the potential for smart road design to promote safe and active transportation for all age groups. Along the way, curious residents inquired about the event, and a few stray cyclists joined the ride!  Thank you to all who made this event possible.  We look forward to working with you as we harness this positive energy and momentum for a more bikeable, walkable and livable Silver Spring!

This post comes from Zachary Weinstein, a leading member of WABA’s Action Committee for Montgomery County and a resident of Silver Spring. To get involved, sign our petition to support our campaign to Create the Silver Spring Circle for a more bikeable Silver Spring, come to our next meeting (4th Monday of the month, 7pm at the Silver Spring Civic Center) and join the Bike Silver Spring Facebook group.

Thank you!

If you’re one of the more than 500 people who joined WABA or renewed their membership this week, THANK YOU!

Whether you became a new member, renewed your commitment to WABA, or tweeted for #wabasockwednesday, your passion for our organization has really shown!

If you’re a new member, we are excited to help you find your bicycling community! If you’re

Thank you again for participating in WABA’s Membership Drive this year, and we hope to see you soon!

DoorDash hustles to double bicycle deliveries in DC by 2018

WABA’s Business Members understand the importance of a community that bicycles. Their membership supports our advocacy, outreach, and education. Our business members are committed to a creating a healthy, more livable region and are adding their voice to a growing number of bicycle-friendly businesses supporting WABA. Today, meet WABA’s newest Leadership Level Business Member, DoorDash.

DoorDash is a food delivery company that delivers food from your favorite local restaurants right to your doorstep. Launched in DC in March of 2015, DoorDash has rapidly grown their fleet of “Dashers” who deliver your favorite dishes to you. At this moment of growth, DoorDash has set an ambitious goal: to double the amount of deliveries delivered by bicycle in DC by the start of 2018!

This goal is part of a strategy to become a more bicycle-oriented business. DoorDash has worked to develop a delivery bag that is comfortable for Dashers, and visible to other road users. DoorDash also uses software that takes into account the size and distances of orders to determine whether they are bikeable.

DoorDash became a WABA business member because they know WABA’s work makes bicycling safer and more popular, which is integral to the success of their bicycle delivery goals.

As DC manager Ana Karimi stated, “DC is an excellent city for bicyclists. We want to promote this option for Dashers and make sure we are all working together to make bicycling easier, safer, and more accessible.”

If you believe in more bicycle deliveries in DC, check out DoorDash. You’ll get $5 off your first order of $15 or more with DoorDash when you use the discount code “WABA”.

Do you own, work for, or patronize a business that is a good candidate for our business membership? Help show your support for a bike-friendly region and WABA’s advocacy and get all sorts of perks, including your very own blog post! Details here.

WE’RE HIRING: VISION ZERO CAMPAIGN COORDINATOR

The Washington Area Bicyclist Association seeks a strategic community organizer to lead our program to end traffic fatalities and serious injuries in the Washington Region within the decade. (Learn more about our Vision Zero campaign here.)

Position Overview

Traffic fatalities are preventable. For too long, we have been conditioned to accept that crashes on our roads are the inevitable price we pay for convenient and efficient transportation. But it doesn’t have to be this way. We know how to design roads to be so safe that even when people make mistakes, no one gets killed. We know what kinds of traffic laws and enforcement make the streets safer for all users. What we need is the public support to implement these solutions. That’s where you come in.

The Vision Zero Campaign Coordinator will act as a community organizer, mobilizing support to keep the District moving forward with commitments to Vision Zero, and support neighboring jurisdictions to make their own Vision Zero commitments. The Coordinator will work to build better relationships between the bicycling community and law enforcement.

Vision Zero Coordinator Job Activities:

Vision Zero Advocacy

  • Build community support for Vision Zero through Safe Street workshops, days of action, neighborhood safety audits, and other community engagement activities;
  • Analyze publicly available crash data to produce think pieces and reports that support our advocacy for safer streets;
  • Act as a resource to victims of crashes through the WABA Crash Tracker;
  • Organize “What to do after a crash” and other relevant community workshops;
  • Help organize a regional Vision Zero summit

Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications

The ideal candidate will demonstrate experience or background in the following:

  • Grassroots or community organizing
  • Event planning
  • Commitment to equity and social justice
  • Policy or legal work (preferred, not required)
  • Experience working with a regional transportation department or planning agency (preferred, not required)

Additional required skills:

  • Strong communications skills, both written and verbal
  • Technological fluency. The coordinator will create and maintain spreadsheets, run reports, and communicate with our members and the public via a myriad of online organizing tools, including WordPress and Salsa. The advocacy team uses Google office tools (G-Suite) and Microsoft Office tools to collaborate on work.

About Us

Washington Area Bicyclist Association works to create a healthy, more livable region by promoting bicycling for fun, fitness, and affordable transportation; advocating for better bicycling conditions and transportation choices for a healthier environment; and educating children, adults, and motorists about safe bicycling.

Employment Details

The salary for qualified candidates is mid-40s. The position is full-time. Benefits include employer covered health/dental insurance, generous flex and comp time policy, vacation, sick and personal leave, committed colleagues, fun working environment, and WABA’s 403(b) retirement program.

The position is based in the WABA office in Adams Morgan, Washington D.C. Occasional evening and weekend work is required.

WABA is committed to providing equal employment opportunity for all people, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, marital status, arrest record or criminal convictions, political affiliation, sexual orientation or gender identity, disability, sex, or age.

How to Apply:

Submit a cover letter and resume in one PDF to Tamara Evans at jobs@waba.org with “Vision Zero Campaign Coordinator” in the subject line. In your application materials, please help us understand how you would contribute to the diversity of WABA’s staff, and let us know where you learned about the position.

If you are selected for an interview, we will request three writing samples, one persuasive and one policy analysis.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position has been filled.  Only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Please, no phone calls.

Tips for Being a PAL this Halloween

Happy PAL-oween from your friendly neighborhood Arlington PAL (Predictable, Alert, Lawful) Ambassadors! On October 31st, we’ll be out on N. Jackson Street near Virginia Square among trick-or-treaters to help everyone have fun and walk, bike, or drive safely during their night of spooky fun.

Join us, won’t you?

And keep reading for some tips that you can share for anyone going out on Halloween:

Drive and bike SLOWLY through your neighborhood and be extra aware of pedestrians.

Kids can be unpredictable humans, especially when they’re surrounded by the excitement of tricks and treats. There will be many more people of all ages walking around on Halloween than your typical weekday evening, so be sure to take extra care. Worst thing that can happen is that you’re delayed by an adorable parade of minions and goblins crossing the street. If you’re on your bike, make sure to let people walking and trick or treating know you’re around by calling your passes, ringing a bell or wishing them a Happy Halloween!

Walkers and bikers: lighten up!

Ashley and Annmarie sporting their #BEaPAL reflective vests during the Mardi Gras parade

While the onus is on drivers to take care around more vulnerable road users, like people walking, biking and trick or treating, there are things you can do to improve your visibility at night. Reflective accents can be added to costumes to help you be seen. Carrying glow sticks or flashlights can be helpful as they not only help others see you, but help you see in the dark as well.

For bicyclists, Arlington County requires that bicycles ridden at night have one white light at the front and a red reflector at the rear. A blinking red rear light and bonus reflective goodies, like vests or small stickers, can be even more helpful.

Luckily, the PAL Ambassadors will be there handing out bike lights, reflective vests and fun goodies that night to help keep your Halloween lit!

Everyone: be lawful at intersections

This goes for everyone! When walkers wait for the crosswalk signal, bikers stop at the stop sign or light and drivers always yield to pedestrians, we all get to the most important part of the night with less stress: Getting home to devour all of the candy!

 


Want Arlington PAL Ambassador updates by email? Yes!

               

City Cycling Class Brings you More Joy When you Ride

Many people are familiar with WABA’s Learn to Ride class–to teach adults to ride a bike for the first time–but that’s just where the learning begins.

Whether you’ve been riding for four months or forty years, it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll learn something new at a City Cycling class. Read below to see how Kemi, a Trail Ranger for WABA in 2017, appreciated her ride even more after picking up a few tricks.


Interested in taking a city cycling class? Sign up here to be notified of future city cycling classes Yes!




“How do I put more pedal to the metal?” this was the question I asked during an orientation ride around the city as a new D.C. Trail Ranger.  I did not realize how embarrassing the question was until I heard the answer, “Shift the gear up”, said Ursula. I replied with a “Oh duh, thank you.” This said a lot about my cycling experience level coming into this Trail Ranger position. I hadn’t biked in years before getting on one of the Trail Ranger bikes for a quick city cycling lesson. To be quite honest, that first ride was a bit of a struggle. Getting used to turning, stopping, and starting, after the first ride I was afraid I was never going to be able to get the hang of it. Practice makes perfect.

My first ever shift was with the amazing Trey Robinson, he taught me everything I needed to know that first time and did a great job explaining a lot to me. Because I was training we took one trailer with things in it and headed to the Metropolitan Branch Trail. “Since it’s your first shift, I’ll take the trailer,” he said. “Sure,” I replied and we took off. We picked up trash, glass, and trimmed vegetation. Then it was time to make our way back, “I’ll take the trailer now,” I said with confidence; “Are you sure?” he questioned me, “Yes!” I replied with determination. My first time riding with the trailer was not as bad as I imagined it was going to be. I zoomed ahead and navigated safely through traffic, I nearly forgot that I had the trailer. We got back and Trey says, “Wow, you know what you’re doing, and they told me to take it easy on you.” I felt great and even more confident that this was going to be one of the best summer positions I’ve ever had.

Working with the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) taught me about the cycling culture in a city. It showed me that WABA is 100% necessary, without this organization and the work that they complete day in and day out we would not witness as many cyclists in the area. I have learned about the incredible work WABA does and what it means to all the many communities in the D.C. area, including: biking infrastructure such as bike lanes and trails, advocacy for safety, cycling classes, small bike business support, etc. All of these things have brought so many people from different walks of life together in order to support a wonderful mission.

This internship has really taught me a lot and most importantly it has provided me with skills that I can share to so many others like myself. I am adopting cycling as a great mode of transportation, exercise, and discovery, which is something I didn’t do before. Working with WABA has really shown me how easy cycling is and has given me confidence to continue to bike almost everywhere and express this sentiment to anyone who is as hesitant as I was. I really enjoyed telling everyone at outreach about city cycling classes so they can join me in riding more.”


Kemi became a confident rider on the job with city cycling as we covered urban riding, quick stops and other skills as employee training. We’ll be hiring Trail Rangers for the 2018 season in April but you can get the same skills in the course of a morning and no cover letter required!

City Cycling classes are scheduled to take place in multiple locations this fall. To view the complete schedule of classes click here. To get a discount code to register for free, email me. As with riding in general, the City Cycling class is more fun if you bring a friend. If you don’t, no worries, you’re bound to make a friend or two during the class. Happy riding!

WABA Membership: An All Access Pass to Adventure

Maybe you ride because you want to spend more time exploring parts of the region beyond your usual pedaling grounds. Maybe you want to make new friends to bike with on the weekends, or share a ride with your family. Perhaps you have always wondered what a gravel trail feels like. WABA members get to enjoy all of this and more through WABA signature events!

Our signature events gather bike communities from Maryland, Virginia, and DC several times a year to celebrate better bicycling for everyone in the region—and they’re a blast!

If you like riding past the first flowers of spring, you want to try Vasa Ride. Perhaps scavenger hunts are more your scene? The 50 States Ride would make you happy. Whatever kind of riding you are into, we have a signature event for you to plug into the larger bike community and put miles under your wheels.

Our signature events are designed with you in mind, and are only open to WABA members!

Join

Last week, we finished up a very special signature event: our only multi-day ride, WABA in the Wild. WABA in the Wild explores one of the bicycling gems of our region, the C&O Canal Towpath, where riders pedal all 184.5 miles and camp along the way. WABA in the Wild also exemplifies the dedication of our members to WABA’s work in the region. By the end of the ride, participants raise a minimum of $1,000 to support WABA. This year’s twenty riders collectively raised a whopping $25,314.47… and the donations are still coming in!

Yes, those are custom WABA in the Wild jerseys.

WABA in the Wild is a bucket list ride for many folks, and we make easy for you to focus on pedaling by taking care of food, lodging, and getting vehicles to and from Cumberland and DC.

But, you don’t have to commit to a three-day ride to support WABA. Since all of our signature events make a direct impact on WABA’s work, supporting better bicycling in the region can be as simple as buying a beer at Tour de Fat, making a donation at the Bicyclist Choice Awards, or registering for The Cider Ride, which is coming up on Saturday, November 4th!

And, we’re working hard to make our events better and support more riders in the region. Since WABA works everywhere in the region, we’re looking to host an event in each jurisdiction with fewer barriers to entry. WABA is expanding our Sponsor-a-Rider program to all the rides in 2018, and hopes to provide bicycles and helmets to riders otherwise unable to participate.

Wherever you are in the region, we want to make it easy and safe for you to ride your bicycle. Join WABA as a member, and then join us at a WABA signature event to meet new friends and enjoy a great ride. In fact, with beautiful fall weather just around the corner, why not make it to The Cider Ride?

Hot cider and donuts included.