CAMPO / RTC Meeting Alert

There are a few items on June’s CAMPO/RTC agenda that are important Carson City pedestrians and cyclists! Please take the time from your busy schedule to attend these meetings and show your support for these important projects. Your presence and voice really do make a difference!

Ride with the City Supervisors

On the agenda:

  • Safe Routes to School
  • Freeway Multi-Use Path
  • Bicycle Friendly Community application review

When: June 8th, 4:30 PM
Where: Carson City Community Center, Sierra Room (west side of the building)

Full meeting agendas can be viewed here:

CAMPO Agenda
RTC Agenda

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Muscle Powered NEWS

Muscle Powered was BUSY last week! Here’s a look at what went on.

Bike to Work Week

Read the 2010 Bike to Work Week Wrap up over on BikeCarson.com. Many people showed up for our events throughout the week in spite of the crummy weather!

West Carson Cruiser Ride
West Carson Cruiser Ride

Carson City Corporate Commuter Challenge

The driving force behind Bike to Work Week is the Corporate Commuter Challenge. This year, Carson City cyclists completed 987 trips by bike and logged in 3,234.26 miles! Big change happens from many people doing little things.

Read about Tammy Steele’s solo victory in the Nevada Appeal: Carson woman cruises to victory in Bike to Work challenge.

Also check out the complete 2010 Corporate Challenge results over on BikeCarson.com.

Bike to Work Week Party
The Bike Smith stripped Red Rock Dental of their title.

Bicycle Friendly Community

On May 20th, Muscle Powered’s Dan Allison went before the Carson City Board of Supervisors and gave them our Bicycle Friendly Community presentation.  In the end, the Board voted to sign the action plan to become a BFC, and had many good things to say about Muscle Powered’s efforts in our community!  Here is the recent press from the Nevada Appeal:

Muscle Powered receives the “Silver Dollar” award from the Nevada Appeal!

Silver dollar: To Muscle Powered, a local group dedicated to increasing biking and walking in Carson City. They received support from the Board of Supervisors to make a formal application to the League of American Bicyclists for Carson City to receive an official designation as a Bicycle Friendly Community. This is one of several movements afoot that could bring positive attention and tourist dollars to Carson City, along with the V&T Railroad and the new whitewater launch on the Carson River. Geotourism holds tremendous potential for Carson City, and it will be exciting to watch the progress our community makes in creating a world-class destination for outdoor enthusiasts and train buffs alike.

Also in the Nevada Appeal: Carson eyeing two-wheeled tourists

Muscle Powered Ride

Sat, May 29, 10:00am – 12:30pm

Paul will be leading a Muscle Powered road ride this weekend, starting at Bower’s Mansion parking lot and riding 21 miles around Washoe lake. Short snack break half way through in Washoe City at the Postal Cafe or 7-11. For those looking for a longer ride, there is an additional loop that adds 12 miles to the ride. Email me for more details. Weather permitting and helmet required! Hope to see you there! -Paul pzatarain9th@yahoo.com

BFC to the Board of Supervisors May 20

BFC signThe Carson City Board of Supervisors will consider Bicycle Friendly Community status at their regular meeting on Thursday, May 20. The Carson City Regional Transportation Commission approved the action plan (which is a letter of commitment) in April, and now it is the board’s turn.

As with RTC, a show of interest from the bicycling community in Carson City will make a big difference, so we’d like to see you there. Yes, it is during the work day for many of you. The meeting starts at 8:30AM, and our agenda item is 18 (out of 30), but I don’t have an estimate of when it will come up. If you can attend but only spare a limited amount of time, you can email me (allisondan52 at gmail.com) ahead of time, and I will reply when the item is getting close. The meeting is in the Sierra Room of the Carson City Community Center, at 851 E William St (don’t be fooled by Google, the center is west of the location shown on the map).

The Action Plan is just the first of several steps leading Carson City to apply for and be designated a bicycle friendly community, but Muscle Powered, Carson City Public Works staff, and the RTC are already on board. The Muscle Powered BFC Committee will be supporting staff in developing the detailed documentation necessary for the main application.

18. Public Works

Action to approve and authorize the Mayor to sign the Action Plan for Bicycle Friendly Communities in support of pursuing designation for Carson City as a Bicycle Friendly Community. (Patrick Pittenger)

Staff Summary: The signing of the Action Plan for Bicycle Friendly Communities is the first step in the application process toward designation for Carson City as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. A member of the group that is requesting that an application be submitted on behalf of Carson City will present the merits of the Bicycle Friendly Communities Campaign and describe the application process.

Bicycle Friendly Community and Trails News

BICYCLE FRIENDLY COMMUNITY

Muscle Powered and other members of the bicycle community attended the Carson City Regional Transportation Commission meeting on April 14th to present the Bicycle Friendly Community plan. Mark Kimbrough, Executive Director of the Tahoe Rim Trail Association and member of the State Bicycle Advisory Board, presented the BFC plan to the commission, and Ty Polastri, president of the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition, shared his insight of how South Lake Tahoe made its entry into the Bicycle Friendly community. Ty was instrumental in South Lake Tahoe receiving a Bronze award from the League of American Bicyclists, and he has been helping Carson City along on our path to becoming the first Bicycle Friendly Community in Nevada.

BFC Presentation
A sampling of attendees at the Bicycle Friendly Community Presentation

Not only would becoming a Bicycle Friendly Community lead us in the direction of having a nice and safe city to walk and bike in, Ty and Mark both conveyed how BFC status relates to bicycle tourism and economic prosperity. Not only is it a quality of life issue, it’s a public relations campaign. Your city may be a cycling Mecca, but if you don’t advertise it, who will know? An official BFC status will put Carson City on the national map, and has the potential to attract tourism and people and businesses looking to relocate. The Carson City Regional Transportation Commission voted to adopt the action plan for a Bicycle Friendly Community, and Mayor Bob Crowell had great things to share about his experience while visiting the Bicycle Friendly Community of Tempe, AZ. The next step is to move on to the Board of Supervisors and begin the long application process with the League of American Bicyclists.

CARSON CITY TRAILS PRESENTATION

Complimenting the Bicycle Friendly Community project is the Ash Canyon to Kings Canyon trail project. Mountain Biking and hiking on the west side of Carson City is growing in popularity. Not only are we seeing more locals hit the trails, people from the Carson Valley, Reno, Lake Tahoe, and Truckee are making the trip down to Carson City to experience what Carson City has to offer. As good as our trails are though, we’re going to need more miles of trail before we can attract visitors from further away.

Open Space Meeting
Trails presentation at the Open Space Meeting

On April 19th, Muscle Powered’s Chas Macquarie and Jeff Potter presented the Kings Canyon to Ash Canyon trail plan to the Open Space Advisory Committee. The proposed trail will connect the top of the Creek Trail to the switch back area of Kings Canyon road, traverse the the scenic high ridges above the Kings Canyon waterfall area, and add an addition 5 miles of trail. This trail would provide connection to future trails in the Borda Meadows area, including the already existing Longview Trail. And going beyond this area, the goal is to tie into the Carson Valley trail network, the Tahoe Rim Trail, and Marlette lake Flume Trail. As you can imagine, we would then have a trail system to brag about.

Ash Canyon
Walking the proposed trail alignment in Ash Canyon

Jeff Potter had presented his trail plan to the Forest Service a couple years ago, but with little city or community backing, the plan never made it onto the Forest Service program list. This meeting with the Open Space Committee, however, was much different. Using the momentum we gained with progress in the Bicycle Friendly Community area, Chas Macquarie made a compelling presentation of our master trail plan to the committee. Backing Chas and Jeff up was a room full of trail users. Almost every seat was filled! Selling the plan to the committee was not a challenge, since many of them use these same trails themselves.

The biggest hurdle to get the project going is an environmental assessment of the proposed area. These are not cheap at around $60K-70K. The committee was not opposed to funding this though, and will put this item to vote at the next meeting. There are also grants available to reimburse these fees down the road. In the end, the Open Space Advisory Committee voted and approved the efforts of Muscle Powered to pursue this trail project. If everything falls into place, trail construction would most likely begin on the north end of the trail in Ash Canyon, since the city currently owns this property. A strong community and city government backing will bring us much more influence now when we go back to the U.S. Forest Service and ask to build trail on their portion of the land.

Evidence Trail
Carson City. Future Mountain Bike Mecca?

A big part of the reason this project is being allowed to move forward is that much of the work to construct and maintain this trail will be provided by the volunteer work of Muscle Powered, an advocacy group of citizens for a walkable and bikeable Carson City. In this economy, volunteer work is a powerful tool, since many government agencies and departments have no money left in their budgets to take on anything new. In fact, many are scaling back. It’s very uplifting to see that bicycle advocacy issues are now bringing more people to city meetings, and believe me, this participation is making a huge difference, but to have an even greater influence with city, state, and federal goverment, we need to grow the Muscle Powered membership.

Annual dues to join Muscle Powered are only $10 for student/senior, $15 for an individual, or $20 for a family. Not only does membership with Muscle Powered allow you to participate in Muscle Powered exclusive events like walks and bicycle rides, memberships and donations provide the primary source of funding for Muscle Powered projects.

Muscle Powered has a downloadable membership form on the website. Very soon we’ll have our Paypal service available on the website as well, so you can make easy and secure electronic payments. You will also notice you can now subscribe to the Muscle Powered newsletter using the link at the top right sidebar.

Thank you for your continued support!

Bicycle Friendly Community Presentation

Muscle Powered will be giving a Bicycle Friendly Community presentation to the Regional Transportation Commission this Wednesday, April 14th, at the Carson City Community Center. A Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC) is a designation awarded by the League of American Bicyclists to communities that have proven to posses safe accommodations for cycling, and that encourage people to bike for transportation and recreation.

Muscle Powered will present the BFC application process to the city and explain the benefits of being a BFC. The BFC application will provide a comprehensive picture of our community by asking questions across five categories often referred to as the “Five Es”. These categories are Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation & Planning. A community must demonstrate achievements in these areas in order to be considered for an award. Communities with more significant achievements in these areas receive superior awards.

Please attend the meeting if you can. Learn more about the BFC process, and show the city that you support the project!

DETAILS
Wednesday, April 14th
Carson City Community Center
Corner of Roop and HWY 50
Sierra Room (northwest entrance of the building)
The RTC meeting starts after the CAMPO meeting which begins at 5:30pm (probably around 6PM)
MAP

Bicycle Friendly in other places

Here are a few links to Bicycle Friendly Community efforts and status in other places. If you have links to recommend, please comment with them, and they’ll be added to the list.

Carson City – A Bicycle Friendly Community?

Muscle Powered has embarked on a project to make Carson City, NV a Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC). A BFC is a designation awarded by the League of American Bicyclists to communities that have proven to posses safe accommodations for cycling, and that encourage people to bike for transportation and recreation.

Bike Friendly Community Meeting
2010 BFC kick-off meeting

On January 6th, we had the official 2010 BFC kick-off meeting. In attendance (pictured above left to right) were Denis Coyne, Bill Story, Dan Allison, Mark Kimbrough, Tim Rowe, Ty Polastri, Jeff Moser (me), and Anne Macquarie. This group of people represents Muscle Powered, the State of Nevada Bicycle Advisory Board, and the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition (some of the folks mentioned here represent multiple entities). Ty Polastri from the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition has been through this drill before, and was largely responsible for South Lake Tahoe earning a Bronze Award as an BFC. Ty has been instrumental in laying out the road map for us to proceed, and we’ve already made progress on completing the first step. A few of us have already discussed BFC with Carson City Mayor Bob Crowell, and he is enthusiastically behind the idea!

The BFC application will provide a comprehensive picture of our community by asking questions across five categories often referred to as the “Five Es”. These categories are Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation & Planning. A community must demonstrate achievements in these areas in order to be considered for an award. Communities with more significant achievements in these areas receive superior awards.

It is important for communities to strive to become bicycle friendly, as bicyclists are an indicator of a healthy, vibrant community. A few of the benefits of the BFC program are:

* Health benefits from increased physical activity
* Less traffic congestion
* Improved air quality
* Bicycle facilities provide both transportation and recreation, and serve all ages and incomes
* Bicycle tourism stimulates local economies

Currently, there are no official Bicycle Friendly Communities in Nevada. In fact, Nevada is one of the only western states that does not have a community with this designation! It is Muscle Powered’s opinion that Carson City has what it takes to become Nevada’s first official BFC.

More information about Bicycle Friendly Communities can be found on the League of American Bicyclists’ website at www.bikeleague.org/programs/bicyclefriendlyamerica/.

I’m sure we’ll need more help as this project progresses. Stay tuned for further developments!