Cycling News: Bicycle Lobbying in Wash., D.C. = 0.281% of General Motor’s budget alone

Washington, D.C. transportation funding does not concern itself much with bicycles, yet. But political movements are starting at the grassroots level.

Washington, D.C. transportation funding does not concern itself much with bicycles, yet. But political movements are starting at the grassroots level.

Link Contriubted by Andy Mckee

There is a bicycle lobby in Washington, D.C., Politico.Com reports, but it is .281 percent of just General Motor’s lobbying effort, despite the worry over bicycle congestion expressed by the Wall Street Journal’s editorial department.

However, this modest $20,000 effort has earned bicyclists and pedestrians approximately 1-2 percent of the total U.S. transportation budget.

But cyclists in New York City have decided to get serious. StreetsPAC writes on its web site, “StreetsPAC supports candidates who demonstrate unwavering devotion to the expansion of traffic-calming infrastructure such as neighborhood slow zones, pedestrian plazas, and bike lanes; increased and improved transit access for all New Yorkers; more thorough crash investigations; and better enforcement of traffic laws.”

Change can be made more effectively at the lowest levels of government is the theory of the group, who distributes questionnaires to all candidates.

Doug Gordon, identified as a leader of StreetsPAC, was quoted in the Wall Street Journal as saying, “”Your local City Council person may have more influence on safety and enhancement of your neighborhood’s streets than the mayor. If I see a street corner that I feel is dangerous in my neighborhood, I don’t call the mayor’s office first. I call my City Council members.”


Cycling News: New Yorkers discover bicycles are fashionable (Except for WSJ)

Link contributed by Vince Buck, Fullerton Bicycle Activist

Bill Cunningham is famous for riding his bicycle around Manhattan photographing fashion trends among New Yorkers for his “On the Street Column.” This week the trendy New Yorker is on a bike as a result of the new Citibank Bicycle Rental Program–citibike. In London, the rental bikes are  called Barclays Cycle Hire and sponsored by Barclays Bank.

But back to Bill and New York, the 80+ New York Times photographer. “For decades, this Schwinn-riding cultural anthropologist has been obsessively and inventively chronicling fashion trends and high society charity soirées for the Times Style section in his columns ‘On the Street’ and ‘Evening Hours,'” reads the promo for a documentary on him. “Cunningham’s enormous body of work is more reliable than any catwalk as an expression of time, place and individual flair.” Bill lives in a tiny apartment crowded with files of the famous, and his bike. “(His) only wealth is his own humanity and unassuming grace.”

Catch the trailer, but, better, download the movie from Neflix. It’s a five-star documentary.

But if you want to have a bad day and pass it on, listen to the Wall Street Journal’s “Death by Bicycle” editorial against bikes, a link contributed by James Mosher, a Maryland bike commuter. The WSJ catch phrase being, “New York is not London or Paris, or Amsterdam.”