Charlotte family commits to cycling lifestyle
When Edward Doughty heard Sustain Charlotte's executive director Shannon Binns speak at a recent Leadership Charlotte event, he did far more than listen and take notes. Doughty went out and bought bicycles for his entire family that weekend as a birthday gift to his wife. The next day, they rode about 10 miles on the greenways. "The kids loved it. We had a great day!"
Since then, they've been doing lots of exploring on two wheels. One of the unique perks of riding bikes as a family has been discovering new destinations. "We found a little park in Huntingtowne Farms that we didn't even know existed."
Cycling is a family activity for this crew!Read more
#ibikeCLT Petition Presentation and Ask to City Council
Council members, Mrs. Mayor:
My name is Jordan Moore, I am the bicycle program director with Sustain Charlotte. The mission of our program is to introduce the bicycle to our city as a transportation solution that will provide economic vitality and social justice, educational and civic opportunities and cultural vibrancy. We share a vision that Charlotte should be known world wide as a city of people on bicycles.Read more
You can now recycle your used bicycle tubes + tires thanks to the success of ReTire!
Guest Blog Post Written By:
Ryan Johnson, Sr. Environmental Specialist at Mecklenburg County Government
Guest Blog Feature: Mecklenburg County’s ReTire Pilot Program
In December 2014, a local bike shop manager approached Mecklenburg County’s Business Recycling Programs looking for an outlet to recycle [or reuse] bicycle tires and bicycle inner tubes. Site visits to local bicycle shops and an extensive research campaign confirmed the lack of viable recycling/reuse options for these two materials. This research also revealed that this was a topic of significant importance to the local bicycling community.
Based on these conclusions, Mecklenburg County’s Business Recycling Programs set forth to design a cost effective pilot program that would address the needs of local bike shops while generating the data necessary to determine the feasibility of implementing a long-term diversion program.Read more
Ike the Protected Bike Lane brings this volunteer’s college memories of Holland to life in Charlotte!
Guest blog post by Sustain Charlotte volunteer Karen Reilly
Family commitments kept me from Sustain Charlotte’s Open Road Day this past weekend but taking a virtual ride down “Ike,” Charlotte’s first protected bike lane brings me back to one of the most exciting times in my life (before a husband and 3 kids!) and something I never would have dreamed I’d be reminded of here in Charlotte….my college semester bike riding adventure in Holland!Read more
Meet Ike the Protected Bike Lane!
If you attended Open Streets 704 this past Sunday (May 1st) you may have noticed some new faces in the crowd. The entire point of the event was to give residents the opportunity to walk out in a shared open space and re-imagine, however briefly, how we use our city. Open Streets brings people of all walks of life together to do what we love to do the most - people watch.
You may have seen another new face out there: Ike the Protected Bike Lane!
Ike couldn't stop talking about how great folks in Charlotte are!
(Photo credit: Ben Premeaux)Read more
Sustain Charlotte applauds City for new bicycle and pedestrian studies
It's no secret that Charlotte's transportation network is primarily built for cars, not for people on bikes or on foot. But that's been changing in recent years as Charlotte Department of Transportation has taken an approach that considers the needs of not only auto drivers, but also those who cannot or choose not drive.
Monday night's unanimous City Council support for a $250,000 study of at least three major arterials, or high-traffic urban streets, was a big win for the city's future! The study contract was awarded to Stantec following a competitive Request for Qualifications in November 2015. The contract is funded by $200,000 in federal planning dollars approved by the Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization (CRTPO) and a 20% local match ($50,000) from Charlotte Department of Transportation (CDOT).
Sustain Charlotte's Education and Outreach Director, Meg Fencil, took the podium to thank Council for their commitment to meeting the transportation needs of all residents by approving this study.
Sustain Charlotte's Meg Fencil spoke in support of the arterial corridor studies. Click to view (Feb 8 meeting; 01:18)Read more
Sustain Charlotte speaks up for cyclists' rights
Last week when many Charlotteans had already left for holiday break, the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) released their draft Bike Safety Law Report. Unfortunately, this report includes recommendations that differ substantially from the recommendations of the state legislative committee for HB232 (House Bill 232).
Although HB232 contains some provisions that would make roads safer for cyclists, the new recommendations would limit cyclists' rights to organize group rides without a complicated permitting process, to ride more than two abreast, and to use the full lane. Learn more about HB232 by reading this article from BikeLaw.
We've told NCDOT that Charlotte's cycling community deserves better than this. With the report released at the start of the holiday season and only a week allowed for public comments, we had very little time to let our followers know how to add their voice. Thank you to all of you who shared our posts on social media and took action by writing to NCDOT. Here's the letter we submitted to NCDOT to let them know that we find these recommendations unacceptable:Read more
Biketoberfest 2015: A community event of lasting impressions
Photo taken at Wooden Robot Brewery by Rachel Safren, The Vital Form.
Our inaugural Biketoberfest was an unprecedented community event, full of fun and excitement for people of all ages! This event was all that we had hoped it would be, as it inspired Charlotteans and visitors alike to open their minds to the joys and benefits of riding a bike around town. Here's what some of our participants had to say:
What was your favorite thing about Biketoberfest?
"Biking around with other people with similar interests. The awesome people I met and the cool places we were able to see. I also enjoyed that I felt like I was helping out our community by answering the questions and participating. Biketoberfest was the coolest thing I've done in Charlotte and I have lived here for 4+ years!"
"Spending time with my daughter and one of her friends. My daughter is 26 and we usually meet for lunch or dinner....same ole stuff. I haven't seen her laugh and smile in awhile as much as she did on our adventure! She kept thanking me for taking her, even again the next day. She said it made her feel so relaxed biking and being outside. She was acting like a kid on that bike :) (We used the b cycles.)"
"Going on an adventure with my friends to learn more about our city!"
"Learning I could ride my bike to all of these places I never realized I could."
"Being outdoors and challenging our thinking about sustainability."
Do you plan to attend Biketoberfest next year if your schedule allows?
"I wish this event would occur several times a year!"
"Honestly, wouldn't miss it. We had a great time!"
"Absolutely!!! Loved it :)"
"I hope we don't have to wait a whole year!!"
"I took the day off work for this year's event -- I'll be there next year! :)"
Our goal was to create an event to highlight how fun and easy it is to travel around South End and Center City without a car. Did we succeed in doing that?
"This was great. I had been afraid to ride my bike around the city because it didn't seem safe and this event really opened my eyes and now I want to ride as often as possible"!
"My daughter went with me and she had never biked around Charlotte. She now wants a bike!"
"I am definitely going to try biking to more places from where I live now that I know how easy that was."
"I just recently got my bike (August) and still felt slightly uncomfortable riding around. Every time I ride around South End and Uptown, I get more comfortable. I felt 100% comfortable the entire Biketoberfest."
Sustain Charlotte Seeks a Full-Time Bicycle Program Manager
Applications accepted through June 15, 2015
Sustain Charlotte is looking for an energetic Bicycle Program Manager with a passion and talent for fostering collaboration to accomplish shared goals. Reporting to the Executive Director, the Bicycle Program Manager will develop and manage a two-year initiative to build relationships and foster collaboration among the various organizations who offer cycling events and programs in the Charlotte area, assist with publicizing these activities, and establish Sustain Charlotte as the hub organization for information related to cycling. The Bicycle Program Manager will also assist in securing funding via grants and membership to support these activities beyond the initial two-year period.Read more
Solar Power and Bike Commuting Featured at April Mixer
Where can you meet like-minded people who care about sustainability, hear from businesses that support sustainability, and enjoy some great beer? At our Sustain Charlotte monthly mixers! Our members and followers gathered Tuesday evening at Heist Brewing to network and hear from two speakers.
Attendees enjoyed stimulating conversation and meeting new friends.Read more