Women & Bicycles Photo Series: Barbara Bitondo, Renu Singh, Harum Helmy

The Women & Bicycles Photo Series (#WBPhotoSeries) is a new project in the program that aims to demonstrate and promote the great and diverse group of women that make up the W&B community.

As well as appearing on the group’s Facebook page and on Instagram, these features – a brief quote and accompanying photograph of the woman participating – will be published in a periodic consolidation of the portraits right here on this blog! For more information about the project, send me an email at emily.janas@waba.org.


 

Barbara Bitondo, Washington, D.C:

“W&B supports empowerment and emancipation of women specifically, which is why I participate. Learning any new skill gives a woman freedom and independence, and, if the skill is cycling, well, in gets her where she is going faster!”


Renu Singh, Glover Park, Washington, D.C:

“So, I was thinking about this the other day. I am a minority, a woman, and I was an immigrant for a while while I was living in London. All of these things coming together. And I feel like weirdly, bicyclists are treated as a minority similarly in that people have these stereotypes about them. When you don’t know something, you tend to misunderstand it. So for us especially in this group, I just feel like it’s important to stick together and get the word out there. The more people you reach, the less there’s going to be an ‘us them’ situation. There just shouldn’t be an ‘us, them’ situation.”

Harum Helmy, Takoma Park, MD:

“Biking is definitely empowering for me, and it’s such a good feeling. I have these moments sometimes, where I’d be going really fast, or actually trying to go fast, and I’d look down and see my thighs going and I’d think – I’m propelling myself forward. Me, my body. It’s kind of neat, you know? And being that happy and feeling so powerful in your body and all is awesome, and it’d be great if more people – more women, really – could feel that, too.” 

Women & Bicycles is proudly supported by The Potomac Pedalers Touring Club; hosts of the region’s most robust all-level group ride calendar and bike tailgates, Chipotle our delicious dinner party sponsors, and we’re supported by all our friends who donated through the Hains Point 100 ride.  

   

 

Go to a Vision Zero Pop-Up Event

vision zero campaign bannerTraffic fatalities and serious injuries are preventable. Vision Zero aims to end all traffic-related deaths and serious injuries in DC by 2024.

The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) is holding 10 public events across DC’s eight wards over the next two weeks. DDOT wants your input and ideas about to achieve Vision Zero in DC. Give your input by attending one of the events in the next two weeks.

Mayor Bowser announced her administration’s commitment to Vision Zero during her first one hundred days. DDOT is now coordinating a wide range of DC Government agencies to develop a two-year action plan. The Vision Zero Action Plan will apply effective use of data, education, enforcement, and engineering to achieve the goal of eliminating traffic deaths in DC by 2024. The Action Plan will be released to the public in September.

The Vision Zero Awareness Events will take place between now and August 1. Here are the times, locations and dates for the events:

Date Ward Locations Time
7/15/2015 6 Eighth and H Streets, NE 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm
7/16/2015 3 Cleveland Park Metro Station, NW 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm
7/18/2015 1 14th Street and Irving Street, NW 11:00 pm – 1:30 pm
7/21/2015 4 Takoma Metro Station, NW 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm
7/23/2015 8 Anacostia Metro Station, SE 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm
7/25/2015 2 M Street and Wisconsin Avenue, NW 11:00 pm – 1:30 pm
7/27/2015 2 Seventh and H Streets, NW 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm
7/29/2015 7 Minnesota Avenue Metro Station, NE 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm
7/28/2015 5 Rhode Island Ave Metro Station, NE 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm
8/1/2015 6 Eastern Market Metro Station, SE 11:00 am – 2:30 pm

Can’t make an event? Give your input online now.

Add your safety issues Vision Zero Map by visiting http://visionzero.ddot.dc.gov/VisionZero/. To find out more about Vision Zero visit www.DCVisionZero.com.

9 Bicycle Apps Worth Checking Out

9 bicycle apps

You don’t need a smartphone to have a happy bike ride, but these tools can add a little fun, convenience or peace of mind to your two-wheeled journey. Here are a few that I like:

Apps for getting there:

Google Maps

google maps app

Google maps. I love it especially when I am visiting another city and want to get around via bicycle. Google maps will give you voice step by step directions for biking, walking and driving. It also includes live traffic conditions, incidents and rerouting to find the best options. The Google Maps developer team has also pointed out that bicyclists provide some of their best on-the-ground data.

Spotcycle

spotcycle app

Spotcycle is the premier multi-city Bikeshare app. It shows you how many bikes are at a station as well as how many docks are available at your destination spot. You can set your app to save your favorite stations, o find nearby available bikes or docks and even set a timer so you don’t go over your 30 minute window.

City Mapper

citymapper app

I really like this app. I stumbled upon it a few months ago and it is sort of a combination of Google maps and Spotcycle all rolled into one. CityMapper will map out a destination for you. Choose bicycle and share and you will see the closest bike share station to where you are and your destination. You’ll see the number of bikes available and the number of docks available. You’ll also see how long it will take to reach your destination on quiet roads or on fast roads. And you can save these routes. The other cool feature is that it will show you the time to reach your destination via bikeshare + Metro which is pretty cool so you can take the subway and know which station is nearby to complete your trip.

Apps for data and competition

StravaMap My Ride, RidewithGPS 

strava app mapmyride app rwgps app_icon

These apps all provide similar services: you can plan and share routes, track your mileage, speed, pace, and elevation and see how many calories you’ve burned. You can also compete against yourself and others, form teams for contests, upload photos, and share your data on social media. Watch out, it can be addictive!

Apps to share your experiences

Instagram & Twitter

instagram apptwitter app

These are not bicycle specific of course, but social media can be a great companion to a bike ride. Share your photos and accomplishments, meet other folks who ride, and stay up on the latest bike news. Be sure to follow Women and Bicycles on Instagram and @WABADC on Twitter. Join the bigger conversation by using the #womenbikeDC or #bikeDC hashtag.

 

Apps for peace of mind

Road ID

Road ID app

I love Road ID, and this app is the digital version of their popular ID bracelet. It displays emergency contact info and other important information (like medicine allergies) on your lock screen, so if you fall or hurt yourself, someone can contact your loved ones and make sure you don’t get a medicine that you may be allergic to. There’s also an option to let friends or family know when you are out on a ride.


Remember to pull over to safe place before interacting with your phone. Don’t tweet that KOM while you’re still pedaling!

Action Committees Get Some Coaching from the Pros

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Two weeks ago, advocates from around the region gathered at the WABA office for a weekend of Winning Campaigns Training with the Alliance for Biking and Walking. Starting with a handful of issues and potential solutions, we walked through the process of building an articulate and targeted campaign plan to guide each effort to success.

Last year, WABA launched Action Committees in Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties to put our energetic, local advocate base to work on campaigns to improve biking in each county. With two campaigns making great strides, we launched a committee in Arlington County this spring and hope share their campaign soon. Each group is led by passionate local advocates and driven by the energy, insight, and participation of your neighbors, coworkers, and friends who want to make their communities more bikeable.

The weekend’s Winning Campaigns Training was all about helping these passionate advocates achieve success. Experts from the Alliance for Biking and Walking shared their insights and key tools that help shape effective, winnable campaigns across the country. They helped us clearly define the issue at hand, identify key decision makers, target communication and build meaningful coalitions. Most of all, they gave our advocates renewed focus, inspiration, and a new way to frame and plan future campaigns. Thanks so much to our friends at the Alliance for Biking and Walking for making this weekend happen.

To learn more about what WABA’s Action Committees are doing near you and learn how to get involved, click here.

Stop Blocking Access to Pennsylvania Ave Plaza, says Rep. Norton

Closed Pennsylvania Ave Plaza

An all to familiar sight: Pennsylvania Ave Plaza by the White House closed to people walking and biking in November 2014.

If you bike around the White House regularly, you’ve probably had this happen to you: the Pennsylvania Ave plaza by the White House is frequently closed to people on foot and on bike, often without notice or any clear or safe detour. Congresswomen Norton (D-D.C.) sent a letter to US Secret Service and National Park Service leadership asking for a meeting to discuss this issue.

Unannounced closures force people to make long detours by foot or bike. Bicyclists are routed onto congested sidewalks (where it is illegal to ride) or down one-way streets in the wrong direction. Obviously the top issue for US Secret Service is ensuring the security of the White House,  but these long closures without safe options for pedestrians or people on bikes are not acceptable. The agency needs to work with the District to find a better solution to this problem.

We thank the Congresswomen for addressing this quality of life and transportation issue that affects both residents and visitors. Read the full press release and the letter to US Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy and NPS Director Jon Jarvis  here.

JOB: Part-Time PAL Ambassador Program Coordinator!

The Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) is looking for a part-time coordinator for the Arlington PAL Ambassador program, a community-oriented outreach and encouragement program to inspire more road-users to be predictable, alert, and lawful.

The PAL Ambassadors are educators and enthusiasts who work to bring better bicycling to the people of Arlington County.  Ambassadors commit through their actions to be a PALs; more predictable, alert, lawful road user. And help shape roadway culture by attending volunteer nights and PAL block parties where we promote our messages, get creative, and get interactive at intersections.

The Arlington PAL Ambassador Coordinator is responsible for most aspects of the program, including volunteer recruitment,  event scheduling and staffing, and developing and executing new outreach ideas. The PAL Ambassador coordinator will also maintain and expand the program’s trailer program, our rolling bike billboards with PAL messaging. The position will report to WABA’s Outreach Coordinator.

This position is part-time, 20 hours/week and compensation is $14 per hour.

Responsibilities

The Arlington PAL  Ambassador Coordinator will:

  • Run the calendar of two monthly PAL events and appear in public as the face of area bicycling.
  • Develop and implement the volunteer night and block party, including: messaging, scheduling, logistics, volunteer coordination, loading and unloading, staffing, and pulling the bicycle trailer.
  • Communicate an effective and encouraging message about bikes and bicycling to volunteer PAL ambassadors, and bicyclists, motorists, and pedestrians.
  • Run the Bike Ambassador Trailer program, which involves pulling our advertising/public awareness bike trailer specific to bicyclist, motorist and pedestrian behaviors.
  • Administration tasks, including: volunteer recruitment/coordination, data entry, equipment maintenance, clerical work, and grant reporting.

Preferred Qualifications

The ideal candidate will have:

  • A strong commitment to WABA’s mission and be a skillful and committed bicyclist with a solid understanding of the principles of bicycling safety and traffic law.
  • Experience in project management, events planning/management, marketing and/or volunteer coordination.
  • Supervisory experience a plus.
  • Excellent writing, presentation and public speaking skills.
  • A flexible schedule and willingness to work evenings.
  • Experience with Microsoft Office, Facebook and Twitter, experience with Salsa/Democracy in Action and WordPress a plus.
  • The ability to pull a bicycle trailer weighing 10 lbs. for 1-3 hours.
  • The ability to lift at least 50 lbs.
  • The ability to organize time wisely and multi-task in a relaxed, fun environment.
  • Conversational fluency in Spanish strongly preferred.
  • Prior League of American Bicyclist Instructor certification a plus.

About the Washington Area Bicyclist Association

Making bicycling better through advocacy and education, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) promotes biking as a healthy, low-cost, and environmentally-friendly form of transportation and recreation. With 4,000 members region-wide, WABA serves bicyclists throughout the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area, including the District of Columbia and parts of Maryland and Virginia.

Contact

Send a cover letter and resume to jobs@waba.org by Friday, July 17th. No phone calls please. Position available immediately.

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


WABA’s working with BikeArlington to recruit a community of volunteers to inspire more Predictable, Alert, and Lawful road culture in Arlington County. Bike billboards, pizza nights, and block parties — all on your commute home. BikeArlington launched the PAL campaign 2 years ago with the strong sentiment that no matter who we are or how we choose to get around town, our roadways depend on a strong social contract. Whether we’re walking, driving, or biking we rely on our fellow road-users to be PALs; Predictable. Alert. Lawful.

 

 

10 Bike Must Knows

10 Bike Must Knows

If you’re new to biking, or just new to riding your bike for transportation,  there are some simple “must-knows” that can make your riding experience better. At our June Women & Bicycles workshop, we looked at some of the most frequents questions we see on the Women & Bicycles facebook group, plus a few neat bike hacks we think you’ll find useful.  Scroll through our slides below to learn more about what we covered: