In case you missed it, the SFMTA’s 2013 Bicycle Count Report came out last week, which has some pretty impressive figures. The report shows that biking has increased in San Francisco 96 percent since 2006! That’s a great direction for the city’s goals of 20 percent of all trips to be done on bikes by 2020.
The count found that 76 percent of the people counted were wearing helmets. (Not bad, huh?) The report also highlights improvements made on certain streets and others in progress. Here you can see a quick graphic on which intersections had the most crossings and which streets had the most increase in bike ridership. How many of these have you crossed?
You can also find the complete report right here.
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition does lots of stuff to make the city’s streets for everyone. One of the simplest things people who ride bikes in SF can do is learn the basics of how the streets work. The SF Bike Coalition regularly holds workshops where the basics are presented.
However, for all the people who ride bikes there are only a few who attend these workshops. Maybe if more people checked at least one of these events out, maybe we can all be on the same page on how we should be riding.
Check it out!
The League of American Cyclists recently released their annual study on bicycle commuters in the U.S., analyzing the growth of the bicycle revolution. Of course, San Francisco would be included, giving a pretty fair representation of the city on bikes. Check out some key points:
- 3.8 is the percentage of San Franciscans that ride bicycles. That’s more than Los Angeles and New York City, both only 1 percent.
- #5 is San Fran’s rank in the Top 70 Largest Cities with Highest Share of Bike Commuters.
- 292.2% is the increase of of bike commuters since 1990. Detroit is the city that had the biggest growth, but we still have more people on bikes!
- 38.5 is the median age for people who commute on bikes in San Francisco. We are considered one of the “older” cities.
We did not make it as one of the great cities for women on bicycles, unfortunately. That is not to say there are not a numerous amount of female bicyclist, just not many that use a bicycle as their main source of transportation, which is what the study considers bicycle commuters.
“About the Data Source:
Bicycle commuters are only counted in the data if they use a bicycle as their primary mode of travel for their commute to work. This practice does not count bicyclists who use a bicycle for less than the majority of their trip (e.g. a short bike ride to a transit stop), bicyclists who use a bicycle for less than the majority of their work week, or bicyclists who do not use a bicycle to get to work.”
Check out the whole report here. It’s actually pretty interesting.
Group bike rides are always fun, especially when you have a destination. If you want to go on one this weekend, good for you. If you want to go to the SF Bike Expo, even better. Thanks to the San Francisco Bike Party people, they have planned a bike ride to the expo. Bam! Now doesn’t that sound fun? Daytime bike party to the bike expo! Oh yeaaa….
A little bit about the expo:
First of all, it’s free! But this is the 6th year it goes on and it’s a one-day event. There will be multiple vendors that will be displaying and selling their products: bicycles of all kinds, bike parts, biking apparel, bike accessories, bike security, bike things, bike things for kids, and more! I personally have never been, but it sounds fun and interesting to see what innovative bike things I probably can’t and can afford. Supposedly there is going to be a bike swap meet! A bike swap meet! And did I mention entrance is free?
The bike ride will roll out from Roll San Francisco bike shop at 10am. SF Bike Party claims the ride is suitable for everyone and should take less than an hour at a relaxed pace. If you can’t make it to the ride at 10am, the Roll San Francisco is leading their own, departing from the same location (275 Rhode Island Street) at 1pm.
There will be free bike valets there, and did I mention the ride and entrance to the expo is free? Check it out!
P.S.- The weather forecast as of tonight says it should be sunny!
Another cyclist has been killed in San Francisco. This time a Muni bus hit 78-year-old Cheng Jin Lai on the corner of 1 1th and Bryant Street October 18. The Chronicle reported the 27-Bryant bus was making a right turn on Bryant when Lai and the bus collided. Lai was pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation is currently underway.
Although no one has been found at fault, yet, this is a call for safer streets. The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is urging the City to take action to create safer streets, specifically in SoMa, where this makes the fourth person killed this year while riding a bike.
But it is not only up to the City to keep us safe. We are our best defense. Urge the city to design safer streets for all, but until then, ride with care, caution, and on the defense.
RIP Cheng Jin Lai
Alright, I want you to read any news story involving bicycle safety. Go for it. Read this ABC7 report and this Streetsblog post about cyclists’ complaints at city hall about how police always blame the cyclists. Or this article about the push for more bicycle safety measures in SoMa. Or even this 2012 article about this lady’s family requesting mercy for the cyclist who struck and killed her. Now read the comments. Almost every news story involving bicycle safety is followed by comments about how cyclists never follow the rules. They run red lights, they say, blast through stop signs, take up a whole lane (which is actually legal). The rules are not working, and I (or any cyclist) can tell you why.
Bicycles are vehicles, but are not automobiles. I would like for every person who is complaining that cyclists do not follow the rules of the road to do all of their commutes on bicycle for a week. I want them to stop at every stop sign and wait for every red light. Then I want to hear what they have to say.
I am not advocating breaking the law. In fact, I am advocating to reconsider bicycle law. Bicycles are vehicles, but not automobiles. San Francisco should consider Idaho’s law, which requires bicyclists to yield at a stop sign or traffic light. I believe there is a hierarchy when it comes to street traffic. Pedestrians should always have the right-of-way. Vehicles, like bicycles and other human-powered forms of transportation, should come second. And automobiles, which can cause the greatest amount of damage in an accident, should have the greatest responsibility of being vigilant and safe.
Looking for something cool and fun to do this Sunday? Do you like New Belgium Beer?
Then check out the Tour de Fat this Sunday at Golden Gate Park, brought to you by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and New Belgium.
Photo by JJ Miramontes
The event features live music, a bike parade, bike acts and games, food, and silkscreening.
If you feel like showing off your bicycle or simply want to ride along, the parade starts at 11 a.m. (registration opens at 10 a.m.). Show off the work you put into your ride!
And the SF Bike Coalition gots your first beer! Just join or renew your membership, become a monthly donor, or sign up a friend! Yea! Free beer!
The event is family friendly and COSTUMES ARE ENCOURAGED!
Proceeds from the event will go toward the SF Bike Coalition and the Bay Area Ridge Trail.
Can’t make it to the parade? Too early? No problem! You can join a bike ride to the event! Two separate rides will roll out from the Caltrain station at 11:45 a.m. and 24th and Mission Bart Station at 1 p.m., but registration is required! Check it out!
Have fun, be safe, and drink responsibly!