I’m easing back into work this week after a bike-filled vacation (more on that in a few posts to come), and it feels like a good time to take things slow and celebrate some small victories, in no particular order:
Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve has started saying some positive things about green bike lanes. This doesn’t exactly sound like the start of the revolution, but it’s nice to see our mayor adding positive things to the conversation about bike infrastructure, safety and culture. Even more encouraging are the slew of comments on that Facebook post, the vast majority of which are from cyclists and drivers alike in support of better bike infrastructure. This article goes a little deeper, including a nice quote from bike-friendly Coucilmember David Bobzien about the importance of connectivity when considering an alternative transportation system. We can’t rely on Reno’s fantastic proximity alone – we need sensible connections and I’m happy to see that on the City Council’s radar.
I don’t need any additional reasons to love outdoor clothing retailer Patagonia with my whole heart and soul, but they gave me one this week: the company’s Reno distribution center matched every mile their employees rode during Bike to Work Week with a $1 donation to the Reno Bike Project, for a total donation of $5,535! What a fantastic idea. Biking to work made those employees happier and healthier, their awesome employer benefited from the boost in morale and matched that good feeling with a donation to an organization that gets more butts on more bikes, which ultimately leads to increased demand for safer and more streamlined bike infrastructure, which loops right back around and benefits those original employees. This is how it should work, folks. Like many people in Reno, I have personal connections to Patagonia, but even if I didn’t I would love this company.
I was out for a run early this morning – I’m getting back into running after a hiatus – when I came across a striping crew putting in (or maintaining?) a crosswalk at California and Nixon! This might not faze too many of you, but for me it’s a red letter day. Many of my running routes cross California at Nixon, and the traffic flow combined with a somewhat blind corner mean that I’m forced to either stand around for minutes waiting for a clean traffic break or play a dangerous game of Frogger. I am 100% DELIGHTED by this crosswalk. One little victory in the fight for a ped- and bike-friendly city!
One of my coworkers has started riding his bike to work regularly (with a sweet ride he picked up at the Reno Bike Project, of course), and it makes me smile every time I hear him wheeling his bike through the office.It’s easy to start feeling like a mild freak when you’re the only one showing up to work slightly sweaty and helmeted day in and day out, and it’s just so nice to be “one of the bike people”, instead of “the bike person”. On a related note, summer has descended on Reno and the masses have taken to their bikes! Throughout winter, I consistently see 4-5 other cyclists on each leg of my commute; now, there are almost that many bikers waiting at each intersection. It makes me so happy to see the simple and lovely phenomenon of people getting it right and riding to work.
Finally, Sundance Books and the Reno Bike Project are hosting an evening of bike chat and yummy food next Wednesday, June 8 from 7 – 9pm at Sundance. Elly Blue is one of the speakers/hosts/whatever, which I’m stoked about since she wrote Bikenomics, a story intertwining my first and second loves. I’ll definitely be there. Tickets here.