bicycle – 511 Contra Costa

Enter the Summer Bike Challenge 2019 Grand Prize Drawing by Sept. 3

Click here to enter the grand prize drawing!

 

Looking for free summer activities that are fun for the whole family? Check out 511CC’s Summer Bike Challenge!

Available in Concord, Martinez, Pleasant Hill, Walnut Creek, Pittsburg, Oakley, and Brentwood, the Challenge offers healthy fun for all ages, and the best part: it’s completely free.

Participating is easy: Download a printable Challenge Card, hop on a bike, and start exploring your hometown. Bike to each destination, cross off squares as you go, and pick up Free Stuff on select dates throughout summer. Free Stuff events are planned June 1–August 6. Mark your calendar today!

Ready to roll? Get started here.

 

Quick Start Guide: Bike To Work Day 2019

Bike To Work Day (BTWD) is coming! Be sure to mark your calendars for May 9 to join us and thousands of other Bay Area commuters in biking to work.
Our BTWD information page has all the resources you’ll need to get started, including:

Locating Free Stuff: Check our map to find an Energizer Station on your route to work, so you can stop to enjoy snacks, encouragement, a free BTWD bag, and cool swag.

Easy Routes: Use the 511CC Bike Mapper to build your ideal bike commute based on your preferences, including avoiding hills.

Tips & Tricks: Preparation for BTWD isn’t that difficult, and we’ll walk you through it so you can have fun on one of the most enjoyable commuting days of the year.

Party Time: There are Bike Happy Hours at the end of the work day on May 9. They’re free, you’re invited, and you’ll find them (marked in yellow) on our map.

Warm Up with Classes or Rides: You’ll find everything from social rides to classes geared towards improving your confidence on the bike on our Bike Events page.

Bike + BART: It’s not cheating to use BART and your bike to get to work on BTWD. Just familiarize yourself with BART’s guidelines before the big day.

Need more information or want to pledge to ride on May 9? Click the button below.

Get More Info on Bike To Work Day

I-680/Treat Blvd Bike/Ped Plan Workshop – Mon., May 22, 2017 (Walnut Creek)


On Monday, May 22nd, Contra Costa County will host a community workshop on the I-680/Treat Boulevard Bicycle and Pedestrian Improvement Plan.
The goal is to identifiy improvements to serve bicyclists and pedestrians using the Treat Boulevard/I-680 corridor between the Iron Horse Trail, through the Interstate-680 (I-680) over-crossing near the Contra Costa Centre/Pleasant Hill BART station area, and extending west to Geary Road/North Main Street in the City of Walnut Creek.
Since the I-680/Treat Blvd overcrossing is one of the main arteries into the Contra Costa Centre/Pleasant Hill BART area from areas of Walnut Creek west of the freeway, residents and commuters are encouraged to attend this meeting and give feedback.
For more information contact: Jamar Stamps, Senior Planner at (925) 674-7832 or jamar.stamps@dcd.cccounty.us
To learn more about this project, please visit: http://www.cccounty.us/680Treat

Caltrans District 4 Bike Plan – Take the 2017 Survey!

Caltrans has set a target to triple bicycling by 2020, but in order to make that happen, they need your help!
The Caltrans District 4 Bicycle Plan, which is currently being created, will guide California’s decision makers in developing bicycle projects and programs. With over 2200 miles of road under their management, Caltrans is relying on local feedback to let them know what residents feel is and isn’t working and what improvements they’d like to see.
Completing the Bike Plan survey will assist Caltrans with their mission to build bicycle facilities that are safe, comfortable and convenient. These expanded and upgraded facilities will:

  • Improve public health and promote active lifestyles
  • Create connections that allow people to bike to work, school, or transit, and
  • Reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions

Caltrans want to hear from as many residents as possible, so please take the survey and help spread the word! For more information on the District 4 Bicycle Plan, visit the project website.

BIKE TO WORK DAY 2017 – THURSDAY, MAY 11

Bike to Work Day is a promotional event to encourage the use of a bicycle instead of a car

About Bike To Work Day

On Thursday, May 11, almost 10,000 Bay Area cyclists celebrated National Bike Month by commuting to work by bicycle! 400+ Energizer Stations were set up dwhere cyclists could stop for refreshments and promotional items.
511 Contra Costa has supported cyclists and Energizer Station hosts throughout Contra Costa County since 2001 using Bay Area Air Quality Management District funds and the Contra Costa Transportation Authority’s half-cent sales tax for transportation funds.
Bike to Work Day 2017 was presented by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, 511 and Kaiser Permanente.  Regional sponsors included the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), Clear Channel Outdoor and Clif Bar.

Wondering what Bike To Work Day looked like across Contra Costa? Click any thumbnail below to access our gallery of photos from energizer stations across the county, or view them on Facebook. We also suggest visiting the photo gallery at YouCanBikeThere.com. (Note: As energizer stations hosts send in photos, we’ll be adding them. If you have photos to share, email them to tips@511contracosta.org!)

Morning Energizer Stations

Brentwood: City Park at 2nd & Oak St – Host: Delta Pedalers Bicycle Club

Concord BART Station – Host: Bank of America & TRC Solutions

Concord: Monument Corridor Trail at Monument Blvd – Host: City of Concord

Martinez: Imhoff Pl & Imhoff Dr (Central San HQ) – Host: Central San

Martinez: John Muir National Historic Site – Host: John Muir National Historic Site

Walnut Creek: Contra Costa Canal Trail off of N Wiget Ln – Host: Renaissance ClubSport

Walnut Creek: Iron Horse & Contra Costa Canal Trail – Hosts: 511CCCCTAEBRPD

Walnut Creek: Olympic Blvd & Newell Ave – Host: Walnut Creek: Walnut Creek BART – Host: Bike Walnut Creek

Walnut Creek: Walnut Creek City Hall – Host: City of Walnut Creek

Afternoon Energizer Stations

Concord: Todos Santos Plaza – Host: Bike Concord

Walnut Creek: Iron Horse & Contra Costa Canal Trail – Hosts: 511CCCCTAEBRPD

Walnut Creek: Walnut Creek BART – Host: Bike Walnut Creek

Any Day Can Be Bike to Work Day

1st time biking to work PHill to San RamonBike To Work Day is a great time to try commuting by bike, but it doesn’t have to be the only day you give it a shot! Just remember: Biking to work is all about what works for you. Maybe the weather, or having a bike buddy, or the copious amounts of stuff you have to haul on a bike factors into your decision to cycle to work, and that’s okay!
Biking to work should be enjoyable, so pick days when riding seems fun and reasonable, then go for it. Do that and you might find yourself planning more rides to work. Just like these first-time Bike To Work Day participants.

Tips: Preparing to Bike Commute

Need help getting ready to ride to work? Preparing for a bike commute isn’t as difficult as you might think. Taking a little time to get familiar with your bike, figure out how to carry your stuff & find a good route (or even a bike buddy) can make things much easier.
Take the guesswork out of preparing with our Tips & Tricks for Bike Commuting!

Isabella Zizi: 2017 Contra Costa Bike Commuter of the Year

Bike Party is what made Isabella Zizi start riding as an adult. That’s where “I broke in my orange ’70s Peugeot and introduced it to the fun.” Those rides opened the door to her commuting by bike, and she now regularly uses her bike to commute the six miles to Gathering Tribes in Albany, a Native American arts, crafts & jewelry store.
For Isabella, biking is more than just transportation, it provides a link to her community and its history. These days she rides the Richmond Greenway, but she used to live by it before it was green. “It was just dirt and rocks, and now it has been transformed. I love the connections it provides. The edible garden, the murals, it is so cool to see everything come to life and be open to the whole community.” During rides around Richmond, she also builds connections with her neighbors and strengthens friendships with other riders.
To get further inspired, read the rest of Isabella’s story and the stories of other 2017 Bike Commuter of the Year winners at YouCanBikeThere.com!

Bike Mapper: Choose the Route Best for You

511 Contra Costa’s Bike Mapper is an innovative bicycle mapping system designed to find the flattest, most direct, or fastest route anywhere in Contra Costa. Read more about the 511CC Interactive Bike Mapper here, or check out our selection of free paper and online bike maps.

Employers: Tips on Encouraging Bike Commuting

If you’re an employer and want to inspire more of your employees to commute by bike, we can help! You’ll find some great strategies on promoting bike commuting year-round when you download the Bike To Work Day Employer Toolkit!

Thanks to Our 2017 Energizer Station Hosts!

California Passes E-Bike Law (2015)

In October, Governor Brown signed legislation into law which clarifies how electric bicycles (e-bikes) should be operated in the state of California.
The law, which takes effect January 1, creates three classes of e-bikes. Class 1 consists of pedal-assist e-bikes while Class 2 consists of e-bikes with throttles. Both classes are limited to motor-assisted speeds of 20 miles per hour and will be allowed to use the same lanes, paths & roadways as traditional (non-electric) bicycles.

Class 3 consists of pedal-assist bikes which can reach assisted speeds of up to 28 miles per hour. This class is restricted to roadways and bike lanes on roadways – they are not permitted on bike paths. Helmets for Class 3 e-bikes are mandatory and riders must be at least 16 years old to use them.
The new law is designed to ensure that e-bikes are treated like traditional bicycles instead of mopeds. As with traditional bicycles, no one riding an e-bike from any of the three classes will be required to have a driver’s license or license plate for their bicycle.
Visit the People for Bikes blog for more on this story.

Bike to Work Day 2015: Exciting Energizer Stations – Coffee, Giveaways & More

Bike to Work Day is almost here! Whether you’re already committed to riding or need a tiny bit more motivation, we’ve got the lowdown on Energizer Stations that should not be missed!
Bike to Work Day logoAntioch
• Deer Valley Rd & Wellness Way (Kaiser Permanente Antioch Medical Center) – 6:30-9:30 am: Giving away free bike bells!
Pleasant Hill
• Contra Costa Canal Trail at Gregory Lane – 7:30-8:45 am & 4-6 pm: Raffle to win a $25 gift certificate towards a fitness or dance class with Pleasant Hill Parks & Recreation.
• Pleasant Hill BART Station (near bike racks) – 6:30-9 am: Free bike tune-ups, Peet’s Coffee, bagels & schmear and other snacks.
San Ramon
• Iron Horse Trail at Bollinger Canyon Rd – 6-10 am: East Bay Regional Park District will be giving away free bike bells!
Walnut Creek
• Walnut Creek BART Station (near fare gates) – 6-9 am: Free bike-tune ups!
• Iron Horse Trail/Canal Trail Intersection Energizer Station – 6:30-9:30 am: Free Starbucks Coffee and bike bells!
• Iron Horse Trail/Canal Trail Intersection Energizer Station – 4-7 pm: Make your own slushy on a bike-blender! (weather permitting)

Rancho Medanos Junior High School: Bike & Roll to School – April 29, 2015

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Rancho Medanos Junior High School parents & students, it’s time to get ready to Bike and Roll to School!
As a lead-up to National Bike to School Day on May 6, Street Smarts Diablo is teaming up with Contra Costa middle schools for a series of individual Bike & Roll to School events. On April 29, Rancho Medanos Junior High School students will be accepting the challenge to get to school on wheels by riding their bikes, skateboards and scooters!
To celebrate the challenge, Street Smarts Diablo will have some free helmets on hand to provide to Rancho Medanos Junior High School students who arrive to school with wheels and need a properly fitting helmet. Parents are welcome to bring students’ bikes to school by car, so that any child starting the day without a helmet can get to school and roll home safely.
Motorists are reminded to drive with extra care and be especially aware of school zone speed limits and children walking and biking to and from school on Wednesday, April 29, particularly around the vicinity of Rancho Medanos Junior High School in Pittsburg (West Leland Rd, Range Road and surrounding streets).
For more information visit 511 Contra Costa’s Bike to School resource page or contact Street Smarts Diablo at 925-969-1083.

Bike & Pedestrian Path Coming to Richmond-San Rafael Bridge (2015)

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Plans are underway to build a separated bike/pedestrian path on the upper deck of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. As part of a four-year Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTC) pilot project, the shoulders on the upper and lower decks of the bridge will be converted to a bike/pedestrian path and a traffic lane, respectively.
The bike/pedestrian path is slated to be 10 feet wide, separated from vehicles by either a movable barrier or temporary concrete walls, and include a raised approach on the bridge’s east side. In addition to the new path, transportation officials plan to build a bike/pedestrian trail connecting the bridge and Richmond to Point Molate.
If all goes according to plan, the bike/pedestrian path will be completed in the fall of 2017. Once complete, the new path will fill a major gap in the Bay Trail.
More information is available here.

Image courtesy Bay Area Toll Authority

Walnut Creek Intermediate School: Bike & Roll to School – April 28, 2015

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WCI_HallWalnut Creek Intermediate School parents & students, it’s time to get ready to Bike and Roll to School!
As a lead-up to National Bike to School Day on May 6, Street Smarts Diablo is teaming up with Contra Costa middle schools for a series of individual Bike & Roll to School events. On April 28, Walnut Creek Intermediate School students will be accepting the challenge to get to school on wheels by riding their bikes, skateboards and scooters!
To celebrate the challenge, Street Smarts Diablo will have some free helmets on hand to provide to Walnut Creek Intermediate School students who arrive to school with wheels and need a properly fitting helmet. Parents are welcome to bring students’ bikes to school by car, so that any child starting the day without a helmet can get to school and roll home safely.
Motorists are reminded to drive with extra care and be especially aware of school zone speed limits and children walking and biking to and from school on Tuesday, April 28, particularly around the vicinity of Walnut Creek Intermediate School (Ygnacio Valley Rd, N Civic Dr, Walnut Blvd, Homestead Ave and surrounding streets).
For more information visit 511 Contra Costa’s Bike to School resource page or contact Street Smarts Diablo at 925-969-1083.

Antioch Middle School: Bike & Roll to School – April 23, 2015

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Antioch Middle School parents & students, it’s time to get ready to Bike and Roll to School!
As a lead-up to National Bike to School Day on May 6, Street Smarts Diablo is teaming up with Contra Costa middle schools for a series of individual Bike & Roll to School events. On April 23, Antioch Middle School students will be accepting the challenge to get to school on wheels by riding their bikes, skateboards and scooters!
To celebrate the challenge, Street Smarts Diablo will have some free helmets on hand to provide to Antioch Middle School students who arrive to school with wheels and need a properly fitting helmet. Parents are welcome to bring students’ bikes to school by car, so that any child starting the day without a helmet can get to school and roll home safely.
Motorists are reminded to drive with extra care and be especially aware of school zone speed limits and children walking and biking to and from school on Thursday, April 23, particularly around the vicinity of Antioch Middle School in Antioch (10th St, L St, 18th St, D St, G St and surrounding streets).
For more information visit 511 Contra Costa’s Bike to School resource page or contact Street Smarts Diablo at 925-969-1083.

Pine Hollow Middle School: Bike & Roll to School – April 2, 2015

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Pine Hollow Middle School parents & students, it’s time to get ready to Bike and Roll to School!
As a lead-up to National Bike to School Day on May 6, Street Smarts Diablo is teaming up with Contra Costa middle schools for a series of individual Bike & Roll to School events. On April 2, Pine Hollow Middle School students will be accepting the challenge to get to school on wheels by riding their bikes, skateboards and scooters!
To celebrate the challenge, Street Smarts Diablo will have some free helmets on hand to provide to Pine Hollow Middle School students who arrive to school with wheels and need a properly fitting helmet. Parents are welcome to bring students’ bikes to school by car, so that any child starting the day without a helmet can get to school and roll home safely.
Motorists are reminded to drive with extra care and be especially aware of school zone speed limits and children walking and biking to and from school on Thursday, April 2, particularly around the vicinity of Pine Hollow Middle School in Concord (Pine Hollow Rd, Kaiser Quarry Rd, Mitchell Canyon Rd, El Camino Dr and surrounding streets).
For more information visit 511 Contra Costa’s Bike to School resource page or contact Street Smarts Diablo at 925-969-1083.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Junior High: Bike & Roll to School – April 15, 2015

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Martin Luther King, Jr. Junior High parents & students, it’s time to get ready to Bike and Roll to School!
As a lead-up to National Bike to School Day on May 6, Street Smarts Diablo is teaming up with Contra Costa middle schools for a series of individual Bike & Roll to School events. On April 15, Martin Luther King, Jr. Junior High students will be accepting the challenge to get to school on wheels by riding their bikes, skateboards and scooters!
To celebrate the challenge, Street Smarts Diablo will have some free helmets on hand to provide to Martin Luther King, Jr. Junior High students who arrive to school with wheels and need a properly fitting helmet. Parents are welcome to bring students’ bikes to school by car, so that any child starting the day without a helmet can get to school and roll home safely.
Motorists are reminded to drive with extra care and be especially aware of school zone speed limits and children walking and biking to and from school on Wednesday, April 15, particularly around the vicinity of Martin Luther King, Jr. Junior High in Pittsburg (California Ave, Loveridge Rd, Harbor St, E 14th St and surrounding streets).
For more information visit 511 Contra Costa’s Bike to School resource page or contact Street Smarts Diablo at 925-969-1083.

Foothill Middle School: Bike & Roll to School – March 31, 2015

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Foothill Middle School parents & students, it’s time to get ready to Bike and Roll to School!
As a lead-up to National Bike to School Day on May 6, Street Smarts Diablo is teaming up with Contra Costa middle schools for a series of individual Bike & Roll to School events. On March 31, Foothill Middle School students will be accepting the challenge to get to school on wheels by riding their bikes, skateboards and scooters!
To celebrate the challenge, Street Smarts Diablo will have some free helmets on hand to provide to Foothill Middle School students who arrive to school with wheels and need a properly fitting helmet. Parents are welcome to bring students’ bikes to school by car, so that any child starting the day without a helmet can get to school and roll home safely.
Motorists are reminded to drive with extra care and be especially aware of school zone speed limits and children walking and biking to and from school on Tuesday, March 31, particularly around the vicinity of Foothill Middle School in Walnut Creek (Ygnacio Valley Rd, Oak Grove Rd, Cedro Ln and surrounding streets).
For more information visit 511 Contra Costa’s Bike to School resource page or contact Street Smarts Diablo at 925-969-1083.

Bike/Ped Path Coming to Richmond Bridge (2015)

Plans are underway to build a separated bike/pedestrian path on the upper deck of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. As part of a four-year Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTC) pilot project, the shoulders on the upper and lower decks of the bridge will be converted to a bike/pedestrian path and a traffic lane, respectively.
RIchmond Bridge Bike and Pedestrian Path
The bike/pedestrian path is slated to be 10 feet wide, separated from vehicles by either a movable barrier or temporary concrete walls, and include a raised approach on the bridge’s east side. In addition to the new bridge path, transportation officials plan to build a bike/pedestrian trail connecting the bridge and Richmond to Point Molate.
If all goes according to plan, the bike/pedestrian path will be completed in the fall of 2017. Once complete, the new path will fill a major gap in the Bay Trail.

Concord's Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan Workshop – April 8, 2015

You’re invited to help create a more walkable and bikeable Concord at a Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan Community Workshop on Wednesday, April 8.
Community input is vital to the creation of the Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan, which seeks to improve access for pedestrians and bicyclists to the City’s BART stations, guide investments in infrastructure, improve connections between the regional trails network and downtown, and improve safe access between schools, jobs, downtown, and other important areas of the city.
A light dinner, childcare, and Spanish translation services will be provided.
Accommodation for individuals with disabilities is available by request a minimum of 5 business days before the event. For more information, view the event flyer or call (925) 671-3152.
To give immediate feedback on how Concord might improve walking and biking conditions, or to read more about the Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan, visit the City of Concord’s information page.

New Bike Racks at Concord's Civic Center (2014)

Concord Civic CenterCity of Concord California

A half-dozen new bicycle racks were recently installed at Concord Civic Center (1950 Parkside Drive), to accommodate people riding their bicycles to City meetings or to the City offices.
“With more residents using bicycles for transportation as well as fitness, we want to make it as easy as possible for people to ride a bike to Civic Center instead of taking the car,” said project coordinator and Fleet Manager Jeff Roubal. The bicycle racks will also benefit employees who choose to bike to work.  The new racks were made possible by a grant from 511 Contra Costa and the Bay Air Quality Management District’s Transportation Fund For Clean Air.
Last year the City of Concord installed new bicycle racks at 15 City parks and facilities. Our handy 511CC bike rack map makes them easy to find and shows the type of rack, maximum number of bikes that can be accommodated, and the location address. The new Civic Center bike racks will soon be added to the City of Concord’s Bicycle Rack map. For more information on the City of Concord’s bicycle parking infrastructure contact Roubal at (925) 671-3147.
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Thawing Icy Road Conditions

People for Bikes is currently rolling out a national ad campaign called ‘Travel With Care‘. According to their site, “The campaign’s message is built around bettering behavior by both people in cars and on bikes by asking them to travel with care and to ‘melt icy relations on the road.'”

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This isn’t the first ad campaign designed to encourage drivers and cyclists to see each other as partners in safety. To get a broader perspective, we took a look at similar road safety campaigns and collected some of their best thoughts.
On the topic of sharing responsibility for creating a safe environment, Massachusetts’ ‘Same Roads, Same Rules’ campaign puts it well:Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.44.17 PM

  • It’s about people just trying to get where they’re going safely.
  • It’s about respecting each others right to be on the road.
  • It’s about keeping each other safe by following a common set of rules that we all know.

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.47.21 PMThe UK’s ‘Let’s Look Out for Each Other’ campaign‘ adds to that:

  • Look out for each other, especially when turning
  • Signal intentions so that the other road user can react
  • Give cyclists space and remember that cyclists are advised to ride well clear of the [curb] to be visible and avoid collisions

The commonality among the campaigns is the notion that the divide between ‘cyclists’ and ‘motorists’ is an imaginary one. All road users are people just trying to get from one place to another. We’ve got the same errands to run, same places to go and the same daily worries – the only difference is in our choice of transportation on a given day. Since the vast majority of people who ride bicycles also regularly drive a motor vehicle, today’s cyclist could literally be tomorrow’s motorist!
However, recognizing the humanity of a fellow road user is only half the battle. How do you preserve the sense that we’re all in this together while battling with traffic? To answer that, we turn to London’s ‘Share the Road’ campaign:

“We all compete for space and as our population grows, the roads get busier and there’s less space to be had. All road users – motorists, cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists – are affected by the issues we face today: the pace of traffic and the pace of life. Sometimes it gets to us all and we lose our cool. But what if we let it go? And leave it behind? [We’re] asking all road users to think about their attitudes on the road. If we were all a bit more considerate, rather than competing and losing our temper, then we’d all have better, safer and less stressful journeys.”

Acknowledging our tendency to get frustrated on the road and dealing with it by choosing to act calmly instead of reacting hastily is a giant step toward making the road a safer place.  And don’t forget about the human element – giving a smile or a wave (even a ‘sorry, my bad’ wave) makes the road a better place for everyone.
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Iron Horse Trail Overcrossings – How to Give Your Design Input (2014)

The City of San Ramon is seeking community design input on proposed bicycle/pedestrian overcrossings along the Iron Horse Trail at Bollinger Canyon Road and Crow Canyon Road in San Ramon. The goal of the overcrossings is to enhance safety and reduce delays for both trail and roadway users.
For each of the two proposed overcrossings, the City of San Ramon has posted a survey which includes descriptions and photos of various bridge concepts under consideration.  You can rate each bridge concept in terms of architecture, materials and color on a scale of one to five.
To take one or both surveys, start by visiting the Open San Ramon discussion page at sanramon.ca.gov. To start the process, select the overcrossing you are interested in. Your selection will expand, giving you a ‘Go to the topic’ button:
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After clicking the ‘Go to the topic’ button, the website will take you to an ‘Introduction’ tab by default:
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To get to the actual survey and provide your feedback, you’ll need to click on the ‘Your Response’ tab. You’ll know you’re in the right place when you see the description and image of the first bridge design concept:
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NOTE: Make sure to click the ‘Submit’ button at the bottom of the survey, or your feedback won’t be captured:
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Once you’ve completed your survey, if you’d like to give feedback on the other overcrossing, just navigate back to the Open San Ramon discussion page and repeat the process. The online surveys will be available through November 26 at 4pm.

Coming Soon to the East Bay: Bay Area Bike Share (2014)

After a successful pilot in San Francisco, Bay Area Bike Share is going east.
After a successful pilot in San Francisco, Bay Area Bike Share is going east.

In less than a year, these baby blue bikes have zipped around San Francisco and the peninsula on over 200,000 trips, and soon, even in the East Bay. This spring, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), which supplied much of the original funding to launch the Bay Area Bike Share, committed $8.7 million to expand the system to the East Bay. Here are the three things you need to know.

1) How Does Bay Area Bike Share Work?

You can join Bay Area Bike Share for a $88 annual pass, $22 three-day pass, or $9 for a 24-hour pass. Annual members get a fancy electronic key fob, and other members can just get a keycode from the bike station itself. Enter your keycode into the bike’s dock, pop out the bike, ride it some place fun, and then return it to that or another dock within 30 minutes. There’s a mobile app and website to help find an available bike or empty dock.

2) Where Will the New Bike Stations Be Located?

In this phase, the 750 new bikes will be distributed between Oakland, Berkeley, and Emeryville.  MTC will be conducting a public planning process to make sure the bike stations are located where people need them.

3) When Can I Get On A Bike?

It is anticipated that the bike stations could be on the street during the spring of 2015 . Look for a launch date to be announced later this year, which MTC is hinting could be before Bike to Work Day in May.

How Do I Learn More?

If you’re on Twitter, follow @SFBayBikeShare, @BikeEastBay or @MTCBATA for the latest. Or subscribe to our newsletter, which goes out every second Tuesday with the latest transportation news for Contra Costa County and the East Bay.

Closer Look at The Amazing "Hovenring"

With thousands of likes, shares, re-blogs, tweets, comments and views, the floating bicycle roundabout known as “Hovenring” may well be the most popular piece of bicycle infrastructure around the globe. It really is quite impressive, in fact we blogged about it shortly after it was first unveiled.  Visually, it’s sleek and beautiful…
… but there’s more to the story.
The project was an engineering feat that had to overcome some obstacles. Ethan Siegel, writing for Starts with a Bang!, notes:

“A huge challenge for building any large, suspended structure is dealing with the inevitable vibrations that will come about, and the Hovenring indeed came face-to-face with that right after its inauguration. A 70-meter (230-foot) tall central pylon was erected, which was then connected by 24 steel cables to the circular bridge deck. All told, the structure weighs in at more than one million kilograms. That much mass, constructed in this fashion, prevented torsion on the structure to keep it stable, but was insufficient to prevent severe vibrations due to winds.”

It took a few months, but the Hovenring eventually overcame all barriers and today sits as likely the most stunning roundabout – bicycle-specific or not – in the world.
For more information about Hovenring, head over to Starts with a Bang! or Twisted Sifter.

Iron Horse Trail Overcrossings Input Requested (2014)

The Iron Horse Trail Overcrossings Project is looking for new design ideas for the bicycle and pedestrian overcrossing on Bollinger Canyon Road and Crow Canyon Road in San Ramon.  Bring your ideas to the workshop on May 20, 2014 from 6-8 pm at San Ramon Community Center Fountain Room.
Iron Horse Trail Overcrossings Project is a collaborative effort between the City of San Ramon, Contra Costa County, and the East Bay Regional Park District.
Iron Horse Crossings

Caltrans Report: Walking, Biking, Transit on the Rise (2014)

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In March, Caltrans released the results from its latest California Household Travel Survey (CHTS), which looks at how we in California travel. The primary finding echoes what many suspect– Californians are driving less. The percentage of California residents walking, biking, or using public transportation more than doubled since 2000; the three modes increased in mode-share, collectively, from 11 percent to 23 percent. 

Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty notes of the survey’s findings, “Based on this research, we can make good decisions about transportation that will improve mobility, air quality, and travel choices for all Californians and make our state a better place to live and work.”

The table below from the recent CHTS shows the exact breakdown of travel mode distribution, and how it compares to the 2000 survey:

CHTS_Table Single-occupancy cars remain the most prevalent travel mode. However it now makes up less than half of all trips, having plummeted from 60.2% to 49.3% of trips.

Interestingly, despite frequently hearing about today’s public transit and bicycling booms, the fastest growing travel mode in the Golden State over the last decade was walking, which more than doubled from 8.4% of trips to 16.6% trips. This is not to say that reports of increased levels of public transit use and bicycling are misleading, in fact the two modes doubled their respective mode-share since Caltrans’ 2000 CHTS.

The results from the survey mark a dramatic shift in the state’s travel patterns and show no signs of reversing. Looking at the numbers one can’t help but to wonder– what will the next California Household Travel Survey look like?

Removing The Conflict Between Buses and Bikes

Catching the Bus to Horseshoe Bay

A bicyclist peacefully overtakes a bus loading and unloading passengers. Photo credit: Canadian Veggie

If you commute by bike or bus, the conflict is familiar: a bus will overtake a person bicycling then arrive at a stop to pick up passengers, and while the bus is momentarily stopped the person bicycling will catch up and overtake the bus.

Vancouver public transit - 01
Buses continuously cross the path bicyclists to pick up and drop off passengers, causing a game of “leap frog” as the two modes alternate overtaking each other. Photo credit: pembina.institute

This effectively creates an unwanted game of “leap frog” in which bicycles and buses are constantly overtaking one another, sometimes causing near collisions since it can be difficult to see a bicycle approaching on the left as the bus driver attempts to re-enter the flow of traffic. As if contending with traffic weren’t stressful enough, this repeated negotiation can be exhausting and tense for both parties.
Thankfully, there is a solution– routing bicycles to the left of bus stops in a separated lane, known as “bike channel” or “bus bypass.”  Here in the Bay Area, San Francisco has pioneered this practice on streets with streetcar stops where it seems to be working just as it should, removing the bus-bike conflict seen on heavily traveled routes throughout the region.
So it comes as good news that the practice will soon expand into the East Bay along AC Transit’s 51 route this summer as part of the “Line 51 Corridor Delay Reduction and Sustainability Project.” Not only is this anticipated to remove the common “leap frogging” conflict between buses and bikes, but this is also expected to help speed up bus times too– a win-win!
While the proposed orientation (which will look similar to the configuration in the lead photo) is unfamiliar in the East Bay, it certainly is not new. In The Netherlands, transportation planners have separated buses and bicycles at bus stops since as early as the 1950’s. To learn more about how this clever design improves conditions for everyone watch the video.

Video credit: markenlei