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News By Bike: Links for You to Read (May 20)

Viernes 20 de Mayo de 2016 00:00

Looking for some weekend reading? Look no further than these links we thought were worth sharing this week:


NewByBikeFrom BikeTexas:

It's Bike to Work Day! Do you have a special story or photo to share? Post it on our Facebook page or Tweet it to us!

Congratulations to Frisco on being named a Bicycle Friendly Community!

Are you on our email list? Sign up today so you don't miss out on our newsletter, coming out next week!


From around Texas:

El Paso's Ride for Reading last week was another smashing success.

Ride of Silence coverage:








From elsewhere:

New York City councilmembers call for more pedestrian scramble ("Barnes Dance") intersections.

Also from NYC: protected bike lanes have made traffic better, not worse.


Have a great weekend!


Meet Lynn

lynn ebikeJoin BikeTexas in welcoming our newest member of staff, Lynn Haas. Lynn holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from UT Austin and will be doing transportation engineering for BikeTexas. Lynn particularly enjoys intersection and interchange design, and will often pause in her commute to study traffic flow--watching how road users interact with infrastructure is one of her favorite things about bike commuting.

Lynn's major project for BikeTexas will be the 2017 Benchmarking Report. Building and expanding on the BikeTexas 2012 Benchmarking Report, the 2017 report will document bicycle and pedestrian facilities, use, policies, and more across Texas' largest 35 cities. The updated report will also offer perspective on how biking and walking in Texas have grown since the first Benchmark report.

Lynn does project research for BikeTexas and responds to stakeholder information requests. She's also a talented bicycle mechanic--her skills with the wrench have been driven in part by her enjoyment of long solo bike tours, during which, as she says, "getting stranded sucks." She's currently scheming her next two bike tours.

In addition to her engineering degree, Lynn holds a Master of Music from Indiana University. She enjoys textile arts and has won a blue ribbon at the Texas State Fair for a piece of handspun lace.

We're delighted to have Lynn on board with us at BikeTexas!


The Elite Eight: Frisco Joins the List of Texas Bicycle Friendly Communities

Miércoles 18 de Mayo de 2016 13:41

frisco city council bicycle friendly community advocacy biketexasPeople on bikes have a reason to smile a little wider while rolling through Frisco today: the city has been named Texas' newest Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists!

Frisco enters the bike-friendly list at Bronze, joining Austin (Gold), Brownsville, Houston, Plano, Richardson, San Antonio, and The Woodlands, all at Bronze.

Congratulations are also in order to Denton, Hollywood Park, and Sugar Land; each of these cities earned Bicycle Friendly Honorable Mention from the League this round.

Texas' bicycle-friendly communities are home to 5.3 million Texans, almost 20% of the state's population. We congratulate all these cities on their hard work to make Texas a great place to ride a bike!


Photo: Frisco receives its Bicycle Friendly Community award from the League of American Bicyclists at a City Council meeting on June 21.


News By Bike: Links for You to Read (Apr 8)

Viernes 08 de Abril de 2016 16:32

Looking for some weekend reading? Look no further than these links we thought were worth sharing this week: 


NewByBikeFrom BikeTexas:

Could the Northeast Texas Trail become a linear state park?

Survey time! Take the follow-up survey from TTAT 2016. Help us get ready for 2018!

Support BikeTexas while you pick up your lettuce with HEB and Earthshare of Texas.


From around Texas:

The number of active transportation fatalities this week in Texas is appalling. Our thoughts are with the families of Jacob Waganer (Fort Worth), Wilma Montgomery (Houston), and Mailani Godin (San Antonio). We also send best wishes for a continued recovery to Elizabeth English (Austin).

CityLab Latino takes a look at the good things happening in Brownsville. (Article is in Spanish.)

From our friends at Velo Paso: Funding for new bicycle infrastructure is in jeopardy because projects that were intended to be ready to go by now aren't. In the meantime, there's a community meeting scheduled for Monday regarding bike lanes on Resler.

Corpus Christi continues to develop its new bike plan.

Waco's Safe Passing Ordinance passed its first reading at the City Council.

Austin wants you to take the mobility survey.

Comments on the Houston Bike Plan are due Monday.


Have a great weekend!


Northeast Texas Trail Explores Linear State Park Option

Northeast Texas Trails Coalition and Texans for State Parks, two hardworking organizations who seek more trails for Texas, met late last month to discuss a possible 130-mile-long linear state park for Northeast Texas.


nett mapNortheast Texas Trail: A Diamond in the Rough

Northeast Texas Trails Coalition (NETT) brings together the seven organizations that between them hold the stewardship of the 130-mile Northeast Texas Trail that runs through seven Texas cities. The trail stretches from Farmersville through Paris and Clarksville and ends in New Boston. Long-range plans call for DFW's Trinity Trail Network to one day connect to NETT at Farmersville. People who ride bikes from all around the DFW area support the NETT.

Although the rail lines disappeared from the corridor 20 years ago, trail improvements have been slow. The longest existing portion of the trail is a nine-mile trek from Paris to Blossom and Reno. Current portions of the trail are funded by Recreational Trails funds, Transportation Alternatives Program grants, and donations of material, equipment, and labor from cities, counties, and folks in the area who are committed to their trail. NETT estimates about $33 million is needed to complete the full 130-mile trail.

On January 30, NETT members voted to explore making the trail into a linear state park, similar to the Lake Mineral Wells Trailway west of Fort Worth and the Caprock Canyon Trailway near Quitaque in West Texas.


Getting Together with Texans for State Parks

Texans for State Parks (TSP) is the umbrella organization for the numerous "Friends" groups that serve many of the state parks in Texas. Friends of state parks perform a range of duties at their own adopted parks, such as staffing visitor centers, conducting tours and education sessions, assisting visitors, and maintaining equipment and facilities, as well as building and maintaining bridges, signage, and other trail features in the parks. TSP also works closely with state and local officials on behalf of the parks system.

BikeTexas staffer Mark Stine holds membership in both NETT and TSP and worked with the leadership of both to arrange for NETT representatives to attend TSP's annual meeting, March 25-26. NETT President Earl Erickson and Chaparral Rails-to-Trails, Inc. Treasurer Bub Mudie presented information about the NETT and were able to visit with TSP and Texas Parks and Wildlife (TPWD) members at the annual meeting, forming strong new partnerships to further this vision of NETT one day being a state park.


nett bridgeBirth of a State Park

The process for a property to become a state park is a long one. NETT has two big advantages. First, the land for the right-of-way has already been acquired and is in the possession of the seven organizations that make up the NETT coalition. Second, the communities along the length of the trail have thrown tremendous support behind its completion. City and county officials in the region mirror this support.

Sometimes state parks come into being in segments, and this may ultimately be the case for the NETT. Check out this article from TPWD's Rob McCorkle about how a state park is born: "Birth of a Park: First You Acquire Some Iconic Texas Land. Then What?"

Many people are already hiking and biking on the NETT, even the unimproved sections. Read these articles from TWPD and TxDOT for an on-the-ground view of the trail:

"Lone Star Walkabout:  A hiker sets off to be the first one to walk the 130-mile Northeast Texas Trail"

"Northeast Explorer: Hike and bike a new rail trail from the Blackland Prairie to the Piney Woods"


Going Forward with TPWD

Next steps? A feasibility study is typically the first step toward a new state park. Meanwhile, NETT President Earl Erickson has invited Brent Leisure, TPWD's Director of Texas State Parks, to join him for a bike ride on the existing NETT trail segments.


Photos: Northeast Texas Trail Map; Northeast Texas Trail bridge near Roxton, Texas. Photos courtesy of the Northeast Texas Trail Coalition.


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