COMMUNITY MEMBERS APPLAUD UPTOWN PROTECTED BIKE LANE PROPOSAL

Joint release by WaterlooBikes.ca and TriTag.ca:

COMMUNITY MEMBERS APPLAUD UPTOWN

PROTECTED BIKE LANE PROPOSAL

Recommended Uptown streetscape design includes wider sidewalks and protected bike lanes on King Street from Erb to Central.

WATERLOO, ON – May 7, 2015. Residents are celebrating a staff recommendation for protected bike lanes on King Street in Uptown Waterloo. The recommended design, if approved by Waterloo City Council, would see the installation of wider sidewalks and raised bicycle lanes, some protected from traffic by parked cars, along King Street from Erb to Central.

“These are the types of lanes you find in places like the Netherlands, where riding a bike is safe and natural for anyone,” said Graham Roe of Waterloo Bikes. “For me it is personal, I want my daughter to be able to ride and walk safely to MacGregor Public School from our home in the Mary-Allen neighbourhood. The current situation is dangerous and chaotic, for every road user. The proposed changes make King Street accessible for lots more people whether you’re 8 years of age or 80.”

Uptown Protected Bike Lanes

The City of Waterloo has been considering updates to its streetscape design on King Street since 2004. In 2013, Waterloo Bikes organized a petition, calling for protected bike lanes to be installed, collecting over 1000 signatures. Since then, staff have worked to incorporate better cycling infrastructure into the recommended design, bolstered by a study by University of Waterloo researchers showing that cycling makes an important contribution to business in Uptown. It is likely that the Region of Waterloo will adopt infrastructure consistent with the City’s choice when rebuilding King Street from Central to University in 2018.

“We’re very pleased to see the progress being made towards better cycling infrastructure in our municipalities,” said Mike Boos of TriTAG. “When lanes like these are built in North American cities, there have been dramatic increases in cycling rates, often accompanied by increases in business activity when placed along downtown routes. We look forward to seeing the active transportation network continue to grow and evolve, as our cities reap the benefits of investing in transportation choices.”

TriTAG and Waterloo Bikes will be organizing a community bike ride through the proposed route on May 25, ending at the Waterloo City Council meeting where the design of the future Uptown streetscape will be decided. The groups hope members of the public and councillors will join them to help celebrate this significant milestone.

The Tri-Cities Transport Action Group (TriTAG) is a local grassroots organization advocating for better infrastructure and policy to enable people to walk, bike, or take transit in Waterloo Region.

WaterlooBikes.ca is a local cycling advocacy group striving to make life by bicycle easier in Waterloo Region.

For information:

Mike Boos, Executive Committee Member, Tri-Cities Transport Action Group 226-476-1313 ext. 804 or media@tritag.ca

Graham Roe, husband, father, cycling advocate, entrepreneur who happens to ride a bicycle to get around Waterloo Region, Co-founder WaterlooBikes.ca  (waterloobicycles@gmail.com).

Visit http://tritag.ca/bikeuptown for more resources on the Uptown Streetscape project and protected bike lanes.

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Uptown Streetscape Update – Vote going to Council May 25 2015

Just got word that on May 25th Waterloo City Council will be presented with the Environmental Study Report (ESR), recommending that Council approve the preferred option for segregated bicycle lanes, wider sidewalks etc!!

The report will be available on the City’s website the week of May 11th.

This has been a long time coming since our first post and start of our petition back in November of 2013!

If you can, mark May 25th in your calendar to show support for the proposal, a better option for all people who use King Street!

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Posted in Bicycles, Community, Safety, Waterloo | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Why we need protected bicycle lanes

Can’t do this in a painted bicycle laneScreenshot 2015-04-24 at 14.46.36

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Safety Recall – Trek bicycles with a front disc brakes and quick releases

Got this in my inbox this morning, luckily my Trek which has a front disc brake, doesn’t have a quick release. Back before I had email my second mountain bike was a Trek 850 Antelope, it had a quick release, but that was before disc brakes became mainstream.  That reminds me, I put this awful one piece barends / aerobars on it — horrible.

“According to the CPSC recall notice, one incident resulted in quadriplegia, one in facial injuries, and the third in a fractured wrist.” via Bicycle Retailer

Safety Recall
Trek issues voluntary nationwide consumer quick release safety notices

Thank you for your purchase of a Trek bicycle. Our records indicate that you may have purchased a bicycle equipped with disc brakes and a front quick release lever that opens past 180°.

If the quick release is improperly adjusted or left open on a bicycle which also has a front disc brake, the quick release lever can become caught in the disc brake assembly. If this happens, the front wheel could separate or come to a sudden stop and you could lose control of the bicycle.

Trek wants you to be safe. You should always correctly adjust the quick release on your bicycle before you ride. Trek’s Owner’s Manual contains detailed instructions for proper quick release installation and removal. If you do not have an Owner’s Manual, see your local Trek retailer.

Additional information on proper quick release adjustment, including videos on quick release installation and removal, is available on Trek’s website on the Manuals pageand Safety & Recalls page, and more videos demonstrating proper quick release adjustment are available on Trek’s YouTube channel. We encourage you to review these materials and to consult your local Trek retailer with any questions regarding proper use of your quick release.

This letter contains important information regarding what to do next if you have one of these bicycles.

Your safety is very important to us. Therefore, if desired, Trek will replace the front quick-release mechanism on affected bicycles, while you wait, free of charge. This includes replacement of the specially-designed quick release with washers if it has already been installed on your bicycle.

Affected models

Any Trek bicycle equipped with disc brakes and a front quick release lever that can open beyond 180º and contact the disc brake assembly is affected. If you are unsure whether your bicycle has this combination, please take it to your local Trek retailer for a free inspection.

What Trek will do for owners of an affected bicycle

If you own a bicycle that is affected by this recall and would like a replacement quick release, Trek will provide you—through your Trek retailer—a free replacement quick-release, including free installation. In addition, you will receive a $20 coupon good towards any Bontrager product redeemable through December 31, 2015 at your local authorized Trek retailer. This coupon has no cash value. If you have any questions, please contact your retailer, or call Trek at the safety and recall hotline: 800.373.4594

Thank you for buying a Trek bicycle

We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this has caused you. We value you as a customer and want you to safely enjoy cycling on your Trek bicycle.

This letter was prepared in cooperation with the Consumer Product Safety Commission. If you have questions about the information in this letter, please contact your Trek retailer.

And an excerpt from my LBS (trek dealer)

A number of model year 2000 through 2015 Trek bicycles were made with a quick-release lever that opens past 180°. If the quick release is improperly adjusted or left open, the quick release lever can become caught in the front wheel disc. If this happens, the front wheel could separate or come to a sudden stop and the rider could lose control of the bicycle.

We have determined bicycle models that could be affected and list them below. Therefore, it is important that you bring in your bike so we can  inspect your Trek bicycle that comes into your store. If the front quick release lever can open far enough to contact the disc brake assembly, you should replace the quick release.

To ensure the your safety, please look at your Trek Owner’s Manual on proper use of a quick release. The Owner’s Manual contains detailed instructions on how to properly install a quick release, and Trek’s website and YouTube channel contain additional information, including videos. Additional information, including videos on quick release installation and removal, is available on Trek’s website athttp://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/support/manuals/ andhttp://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/support/safety_and_recalls/, and more videos demonstrating proper quick release adjustment are available on Trek’s YouTube channel: quick release without washers and quick release with washers.

POTENTIALLY AFFECTED BIKES BY MODEL YEAR 
Model Year Bike Model
2000 8000 LT, Hoo Koo E Koo, VRX 400
2002 4300 D, Tassajara D
2003 4300 D, 4900 D, 6700 D, Diesel Freeride, Liquid 30, Sugar 2+, Tassajara D
2004 4300 D, 6700 D, Attitude XV, Fuel EX 100, Liquid 55, Palamino SS, Sugar Race, Sugar Race XT, Tassajara D
2005 4300 D, 4500 D, 4500 D WSD, 6500 D, 6700 D, 6700 D WSD, Bitter, Bruiser 2, Bruiser 3, Cronus, Fuel 70, Mullet
2006 4300 D, 4900 D, 6500 D, 6500 D WSD, 6700 D, 7.5 FX D, Bitter, Cake 3 D, Cobia, Cronus, Fuel 70, Jack 2, Kaitai, Mullet, Mullet 24, Piranha, SU 200, Utopia
2007 4300 D, 6000 D, 7.3 FX D, 7.5 FX D, Bitter, Fuel EX 5, Fuel EX 5 WSD, Hifi, Jack 1, Jack 2, Jack 3, Kaitai, Mullet, Mullet SS, Piranha, SU 200, Tassajara D, Tassajara D GS, Utopia, Wahoo D
2008 3900 D, 4300 D, 6000 D, 6500 D, 6500 D WSD, 6700 D, 6700 D WSD, Advance, Advance GS, Cobia, Cronus, Fuel EX 5.5, Fuel EX 5.5 WSD, Fuel EX 6.5, Hifi, Hoo Koo E Koo, Kaitai, Marlin D, Monona, Montare, Mullet, Mullet SS, Piranha, Rig, Soho 1.0, Soho 3.0, Soho 4.0, SU 200, Tassajara D, Utopia, Wahoo D
2009 2300 D, 3900 D, 6000 D, 6000 D WSD, 6500 D, 6700 D, 6700 D WSD, 8000 D, 8000 D WSD, 69er geared, Cobia, Fuel EX 5.5, Fuel EX 5.5 WSD, Fuel EX 6.5, Fuel EX 7, Fuel EX 8, Fuel EX 8 WSD, Hifi, Hifi GS, Hoo Koo E Koo, Kaitai, Mamba, Marlin, Montare, Mullet, Paragon, Piranha, Police, Tassajara D, Utopia, Valencia, Wahoo D
2010 3900 D, 4300 D, 4500 D, 6000 D WSD, 6500 D, 6700 D, 6700 D WSD, Advance D, Cobia, Fuel EX 5, Fuel EX 5 WSD, Hifi Pro 29, Hifi+ 29, Hoo Koo E Koo, Kaitai, Mamba, Marlin D, Marlin D GS, Montare, Mullet, PDX, Piranha, Skye SL D, Tassajara D, Utopia, Valencia, Valencia+, Wahoo D, X-Caliber
2011 3700 D, 3900 D, 4300 D, 4500 D, 6000 D, 6000 D WSD, 6500 D, 6700 D, 6700 D WSD, 8000 D, 7.3 FX D, 7.3 FX D WSD, Advance D, Cobia, Elite 9.7, Fuel EX 5, Fuel EX 5 WSD, Fuel EX 6, Fuel EX 6 WSD, Fuel EX 7, Fuel EX 8, Hifi+, Mamba, Mamba 29, Mamba 29 WSD, Mamba GS, Marlin 29, Marlin, Marlin SS, Montare, PDX, Police, Sawyer, Skye SL D, Skye SLX D, Soho DLX, Transport, Transport+, Utopia, Valencia+, Wahoo D, Wahoo D WSD
2012 3500 D, 3700 D, 3900 D, 4300 D, 4500 D, 4900 D, 7.3 FX D, 7.3 FX WSD, 7.5 FX D, 8.3 DS, 8.4 DS, Cobia, Fuel EX 5, Lush, Mamba, Mamba WSD, Marlin 29, Marlin 29 WSD, Marlin SS, Neko SL, PDX, Sawyer, Skye SL D, Skye SLX D, Soho, Superfly, Superfly 100, Transport, Transport+, Valencia+, Wahoo, Wahoo D 29, X-Caliber, X-Caliber WSD
2013 3500 D, 3700 D, 3900 D, 4300 D, 4500 D, 4700 D, 4900 D, 7.2 FX D, 7.4 FX D, 8.3 DS, 8.4 DS, 8.5 DS, 8.6 DS, Cali, Cali S, Cali SL, Cobia, Fuel EX 4, Fuel EX 5, Lush, Lush 29, Mamba, Marlin, Mynx, Neko SL, Police 29, Skye SL D, Superfly Comp, Transport, Transport+, X-Caliber, Wahoo
2014 3500 D, 3700 D, 3900 D, 4300 D, 4700 D, 4900 D, 7.2 FX D, 7.4 FX D, 8.3 DS, 8.4 DS, 8.5 DS, 8.6 DS, Cali, Cali S, Cali SL, Cali SLX, Neko SL, Neko SLX D, Police 29, Skye SL D, Superfly 6, X-Caliber 4, X-Caliber 5, X-Caliber 6, X-Caliber 7, X-Caliber 8, X-Caliber 9
2015 520 D, 3500 D, 3700 D, 3900 D, 7.2 FX D, 7.4 FX D, 8.3 DS, 8.4 DS, 8.5 DS, 8.6 DS, Marlin 5, Marlin 6, Marlin 7, Neko SL, Neko SLX, Skye S D, Skye SL D, Skye SLX D, X-Caliber 6, X-Caliber 7, X-Caliber 8, X-Caliber 9
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Review: A perfect bicycle route in Utrecht

The bicycle route between the inner city of Utrecht, the Netherlands and its outlying university is what I consider to be a perfect bicycle route.  As far as I can tell, it doesn’t have a specific name, but it consists of a bidirectional bicycle path along the east side of Waterlinieweg, Pythagoraslaan and Archimedeslaan.  I’ll call it the Archimedeslaan path, or Archimedespad for short.

For virtual ride along the route, check out the following video by Dutch cycling blogger Mark Wagenbuur.  He starts roughly in the middle of the line on the map above and heads toward point A, which he reaches about 2 minutes in.

This bicycle path is far from exceptional in The Netherlands, I chose it simply because it’s a route I have used several times.  There are countless other routes in the Netherlands that are just as good.

Continue reading

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Introducing the Bikeway Report Card

I am planning to start reviewing bicycle routes, which got me thinking – what makes a good bicycle route?

So after a bit of brainstorming, I came up with a series of categories that could be applied to any bicycle route to come up with an overall rating.  I calibrated the weightings on some routes I know such that the overall score generated is consistent with the overall score I would have given it.

So without further ado, the grading scheme:

Continue reading

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Yo Winter, Smell Ya Later

It’s looking like Winter gives up its last gasp today and what a winter its been.

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This year I finally went out and got winter footwear, goodbye day hikers, goodbye frostbitten toes. It was my favourite winter purchase! (Warm footwear was my top lesson from the 2014 winter season).

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Idea for next year:

The communal Plow. I’ve got 8 months or so to build a few. Would anyone be interested in pulling? Inspired by Calgarians who forced their cities hand into winter maintenance.

Posted in Bicycles, Community, Commuting, Kitchener, Maintenance, Waterloo | Tagged | 3 Comments