The Chainlink

I am doing Bike the Drive for the first time in quite a few years and just got my packet in the mail.  A few comments....

The number/wrist band stuff seems to be a lot more complicated than back in the first couple of inceptions.    I appreciate the work that the CBF (yes.. I know ATA... I HATE their new "mission" as it does a dis-service to bicycle riders -- yes Ashland BRT I am looking right at you....) does, but I really question the degree to which they seem to believe that they can "control" public property.  I recall in past BTD's "pirates" that rode without having a number (or a helmet).    Most of us still registered and I think most of us still will.  What's the "new" policy on pirates? 

A second (curmudgeonly) observation.  I don't really like the T-Shirt at all.  It is primarily white.    White shirts, when wet are, un, pretty transparent.  As these are Unisex, I think they should have been a less transparent color.... 

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Thanks for riding with us, everyone...the big event powers a lot of our advocacy work. Especially hundreds of thousands of dollars to Ashland BRT (kidding...we're launching some new bike campaigns this year).

Yes, anyone, especially attorneys, could argue for or against "paying for public property." Whether it's legal or not, we're going out on a ledge and charging to cover the huge cost of putting on the event and also raising funds to do more nonprofit transportation work.

Surprisingly, our surveys have shown that a large number of people appreciate knowing that other people at the event have paid and are supporting Active Trans. There's of course a smaller group that doesn't like it any which way.

For bike valet, we can park 500-600 bikes at a time, so it's always a good idea to bring a lock. We've looked into gear checks but it was pricier than our budget allowed...we're certainly looking into it for future years. Especially if we could get a sponsor to support the $5-$10K cost to have pro gear check.

Seriously, thanks to everyone who's riding with us...we want to have a great day. The support coming to Active Trans through this ride is incredible.

Thanks sincerely,

Ethan Spotts, Active Trans

11th car-free LSD bike ride (standing, not riding)

Already researching 2041 event plans

You know what I get tired of?  People bitching that advocacy for transit and pedestrian issues - ergo, removing cars from the road - is a disservice to cycling.

I usually hate the phrase, "get over yourself," but it's quite apt here.

Ethan road monitoring for the 2041 Bike the Drive

And my answer is that Bicyclists have been done a grave dis-service by the death of the Chicago Bicycle Land Federation and the creation of the Active Transportation Alliance.    The interests of transit and pedestrians have some things in common with bicycles and some things in common with cars.    The interests of bicycles have some things in common with transit and pedestrians and some things in common with the interest of cars.  But they all do not intersect.    And now we are seeing major political capital being burned by the ATA on a project which will not only NOT help bicycling, it will actually damage bicycling.    I refer to the clusterf--k called the Ashland BRT.   What will it do?   It will mean that any bicyclist heading East or West and crossing Ashland may have to make a significant detour to cross Ashland.   It means that the cars that are forced off Ashland (and yes, while some cars may be eliminated, many will divert to Southport and DAMEN and the other close North South Streets.   In other words, we are going to radically increase traffic on Damn, a major bike route.   

Its an insult to the Bicycle Community that an organization that traces its routes to an organization that was founded to promote cycling, is actively pushing one of the biggest anti-cycling initiatives in the history of the city.

Other areas of "disagreement" could well include Idaho Stops, increases in Bus Frequency, and, of course, further growth of BRT.  

I usually avoid the phrase "Go F--k yourself", and I will avoid it again here... .but in many ways, that's an apt description of the ATA.  

Mr. Ray Joe Hall said:

You know what I get tired of?  People bitching that advocacy for transit and pedestrian issues - ergo, removing cars from the road - is a disservice to cycling.

I usually hate the phrase, "get over yourself," but it's quite apt here.

Hey David, if you want to meet and talk it out, please email me ethan @ activetrans dot org.

Every year our car-free fundraiser brings up the big questions.

I do hope you have a good ride, we appreciate your support there despite our differences in opinion on advocacy work.

Thanks much,

Ethan

Already budgeting for a 2041 land/bike speeder and storm trooper outfit

Since Damen couldn't get any worse than it already is, BRT will do what it's intended to: get people to drive less.  BRT has been proven in many cycling-friendly locations around the world.  Stop being a NIMBY and get with the program.


So why are you paying to do Bike the Drive if benefits an organization that is such a disaster to cycling?  An organization that you're telling off?

Do you EVER have any fun? I bet you're the center of attention at parties.


Crazy David 84 Furlongs said:

And my answer is that Bicyclists have been done a grave dis-service by the death of the Chicago Bicycle Land Federation and the creation of the Active Transportation Alliance.    The interests of transit and pedestrians have some things in common with bicycles and some things in common with cars.    The interests of bicycles have some things in common with transit and pedestrians and some things in common with the interest of cars.  But they all do not intersect.    And now we are seeing major political capital being burned by the ATA on a project which will not only NOT help bicycling, it will actually damage bicycling.    I refer to the clusterf--k called the Ashland BRT.   What will it do?   It will mean that any bicyclist heading East or West and crossing Ashland may have to make a significant detour to cross Ashland.   It means that the cars that are forced off Ashland (and yes, while some cars may be eliminated, many will divert to Southport and DAMEN and the other close North South Streets.   In other words, we are going to radically increase traffic on Damn, a major bike route.   

Its an insult to the Bicycle Community that an organization that traces its routes to an organization that was founded to promote cycling, is actively pushing one of the biggest anti-cycling initiatives in the history of the city.

Other areas of "disagreement" could well include Idaho Stops, increases in Bus Frequency, and, of course, further growth of BRT.  

I usually avoid the phrase "Go F--k yourself", and I will avoid it again here... .but in many ways, that's an apt description of the ATA.  

Mr. Ray Joe Hall said:

You know what I get tired of?  People bitching that advocacy for transit and pedestrian issues - ergo, removing cars from the road - is a disservice to cycling.

I usually hate the phrase, "get over yourself," but it's quite apt here.

Is it nice on your planet?   The one with the unicorns and rainbows?   Do you assume that just because a "name" is put on a project it is the same as other projects with the same name?   The problem is not that it is BRT, it is badly thought-out half assed BRT -- much like the neither fish nor foul Berteau Greenway.    I ride on Damen and the related streets.   They are not great, but they are certainly not bad.   And the Ashland BRT will ruin most of the sidestreets.

What's wrong with the Ashland BRT?

1.   (And this is a big one)-- the CTA isn't getting rid of the Ashland local.   This means that the Ashland local will turn into even more of a moving road-block.    The net result will be a virtual 24 hour a day gridlock on Ashland and the related streets because of 2.

2.   (and this is a big one) -- The City isn't getting rid of the parking on the street and can't get rid of the parking because of the disaster of a parking meter lease.   This, in turn means that Ashland turns into a one lane street with narrow lanes forcing anyone foolish enough to now bicycle on it into a deadly dooring zone providing virtually NO possibility of avoiding the doors.

3.  It doesn't actually go far enough or provide good "turn-arounds" at the end of the line, meaning that buses designed for the BRT (and if this were a real BRT, buses that won't work on City Streets due to door heights) will be forced to drive around city streets at the end of the "line" in order to turn around.

4.  Wrong location.    Ashland's too far east.    Its within a mile or so of the red line for much of the run.   A good North South is needed further west where, uh, there isn't any good options other than slow traditional buses.

5.  Cross Through for non-Cars.    Eliminating left turns (for the most part) and cross overs for cars is a very smart thing.  (And it should be done as a matter of course to speed up the streets).   But the BRT design also prevents Cars from riding through.  This means that any bicyclist not cross Ashland on a main street (and that's a lot of us) would have to detour one to several blocks on each side of the crossing.  

And for this Bicycle Disaster Area, the ATA is spending a lot of valuable political capital.  And they should be ashamed of this.

As for Bike the Drive, I am paying because I enjoy the event and I hope by complaining, (and if others join along) they may someday have a "come to Jesus" moment and realize that they have lost their way.    As it happens, however, I was a long time member of the CBF and then the ATA.  And when they pushed hard for the Ashland BRT, I dropped my membership. 

Certainly you are not suggesting that one can only support an organization with which one has 100% support of all of their policies?    That's the kind of lunacy from the Nadar supporters that gave us 8 years of Bush...



Mr. Ray Joe Hall said:

Since Damen couldn't get any worse than it already is, BRT will do what it's intended to: get people to drive less.  BRT has been proven in many cycling-friendly locations around the world.  Stop being a NIMBY and get with the program.


So why are you paying to do Bike the Drive if benefits an organization that is such a disaster to cycling?  An organization that you're telling off?

Do you EVER have any fun? I bet you're the center of attention at parties.


Crazy David 84 Furlongs said:

And my answer is that Bicyclists have been done a grave dis-service by the death of the Chicago Bicycle Land Federation and the creation of the Active Transportation Alliance.    The interests of transit and pedestrians have some things in common with bicycles and some things in common with cars.    The interests of bicycles have some things in common with transit and pedestrians and some things in common with the interest of cars.  But they all do not intersect.    And now we are seeing major political capital being burned by the ATA on a project which will not only NOT help bicycling, it will actually damage bicycling.    I refer to the clusterf--k called the Ashland BRT.   What will it do?   It will mean that any bicyclist heading East or West and crossing Ashland may have to make a significant detour to cross Ashland.   It means that the cars that are forced off Ashland (and yes, while some cars may be eliminated, many will divert to Southport and DAMEN and the other close North South Streets.   In other words, we are going to radically increase traffic on Damn, a major bike route.   

Its an insult to the Bicycle Community that an organization that traces its routes to an organization that was founded to promote cycling, is actively pushing one of the biggest anti-cycling initiatives in the history of the city.

Other areas of "disagreement" could well include Idaho Stops, increases in Bus Frequency, and, of course, further growth of BRT.  

I usually avoid the phrase "Go F--k yourself", and I will avoid it again here... .but in many ways, that's an apt description of the ATA.  

Mr. Ray Joe Hall said:

You know what I get tired of?  People bitching that advocacy for transit and pedestrian issues - ergo, removing cars from the road - is a disservice to cycling.

I usually hate the phrase, "get over yourself," but it's quite apt here.

I actually agree with a few of your points.  Namely Western or Pulaski would be better (especially both, together) and that Ashland doesn't go far enough in either direction.  But, Rome wasn't built in a day and it's not being implemented tomorrow.  Certainly the parking issue and the CTA local conflict will need to be resolved and won't be part of an approved plan.

Another thing that Active Trans does as part of it's expanded mission is advocate for more funding for transit overall.  The subpar BRT of which you complain is certainly a result of subpar funding for transit.  But what are Chicagoans who want better transit gonna do? Do nothing until more money arrives, or push the envelope to shed some light on what's possible with more funding?  Speaking of Rome in a Day, if you didn't catch it, check out the Transit Future announcement from last week.  http://transitfuture.org/ it's certainly a big reach, including funding, for real transit in this city.

But, dude, the whole whiny-cyclist-complaining-about-how-Active-Trans-doesn't-care-about-cyclists thing is soooo 2008.  If Ashland BRT is your only argument, it's a dead one.

Crazy David 84 Furlongs said:

Is it nice on your planet?   The one with the unicorns and rainbows?   Do you assume that just because a "name" is put on a project it is the same as other projects with the same name?   The problem is not that it is BRT, it is badly thought-out half assed BRT -- much like the neither fish nor foul Berteau Greenway.    I ride on Damen and the related streets.   They are not great, but they are certainly not bad.   And the Ashland BRT will ruin most of the sidestreets.

What's wrong with the Ashland BRT?

1.   (And this is a big one)-- the CTA isn't getting rid of the Ashland local.   This means that the Ashland local will turn into even more of a moving road-block.    The net result will be a virtual 24 hour a day gridlock on Ashland and the related streets because of 2.

2.   (and this is a big one) -- The City isn't getting rid of the parking on the street and can't get rid of the parking because of the disaster of a parking meter lease.   This, in turn means that Ashland turns into a one lane street with narrow lanes forcing anyone foolish enough to now bicycle on it into a deadly dooring zone providing virtually NO possibility of avoiding the doors.

3.  It doesn't actually go far enough or provide good "turn-arounds" at the end of the line, meaning that buses designed for the BRT (and if this were a real BRT, buses that won't work on City Streets due to door heights) will be forced to drive around city streets at the end of the "line" in order to turn around.

4.  Wrong location.    Ashland's too far east.    Its within a mile or so of the red line for much of the run.   A good North South is needed further west where, uh, there isn't any good options other than slow traditional buses.

5.  Cross Through for non-Cars.    Eliminating left turns (for the most part) and cross overs for cars is a very smart thing.  (And it should be done as a matter of course to speed up the streets).   But the BRT design also prevents Cars from riding through.  This means that any bicyclist not cross Ashland on a main street (and that's a lot of us) would have to detour one to several blocks on each side of the crossing.  

And for this Bicycle Disaster Area, the ATA is spending a lot of valuable political capital.  And they should be ashamed of this.

As for Bike the Drive, I am paying because I enjoy the event and I hope by complaining, (and if others join along) they may someday have a "come to Jesus" moment and realize that they have lost their way.    As it happens, however, I was a long time member of the CBF and then the ATA.  And when they pushed hard for the Ashland BRT, I dropped my membership. 

Certainly you are not suggesting that one can only support an organization with which one has 100% support of all of their policies?    That's the kind of lunacy from the Nadar supporters that gave us 8 years of Bush...



Mr. Ray Joe Hall said:

Since Damen couldn't get any worse than it already is, BRT will do what it's intended to: get people to drive less.  BRT has been proven in many cycling-friendly locations around the world.  Stop being a NIMBY and get with the program.


So why are you paying to do Bike the Drive if benefits an organization that is such a disaster to cycling?  An organization that you're telling off?

Do you EVER have any fun? I bet you're the center of attention at parties.


Crazy David 84 Furlongs said:

And my answer is that Bicyclists have been done a grave dis-service by the death of the Chicago Bicycle Land Federation and the creation of the Active Transportation Alliance.    The interests of transit and pedestrians have some things in common with bicycles and some things in common with cars.    The interests of bicycles have some things in common with transit and pedestrians and some things in common with the interest of cars.  But they all do not intersect.    And now we are seeing major political capital being burned by the ATA on a project which will not only NOT help bicycling, it will actually damage bicycling.    I refer to the clusterf--k called the Ashland BRT.   What will it do?   It will mean that any bicyclist heading East or West and crossing Ashland may have to make a significant detour to cross Ashland.   It means that the cars that are forced off Ashland (and yes, while some cars may be eliminated, many will divert to Southport and DAMEN and the other close North South Streets.   In other words, we are going to radically increase traffic on Damn, a major bike route.   

Its an insult to the Bicycle Community that an organization that traces its routes to an organization that was founded to promote cycling, is actively pushing one of the biggest anti-cycling initiatives in the history of the city.

Other areas of "disagreement" could well include Idaho Stops, increases in Bus Frequency, and, of course, further growth of BRT.  

I usually avoid the phrase "Go F--k yourself", and I will avoid it again here... .but in many ways, that's an apt description of the ATA.  

Mr. Ray Joe Hall said:

You know what I get tired of?  People bitching that advocacy for transit and pedestrian issues - ergo, removing cars from the road - is a disservice to cycling.

I usually hate the phrase, "get over yourself," but it's quite apt here.

I have to wonder if Crazy David is secretly being paid by Active Trans to get people thinking about Bike the Drive.

I think that they both are........lol !

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