August 9, 2011, Downtown Ride (with Emily Erickson)

Last Tuesday, instead of our usual indoor meeting, 11 of us met up on Montreal Avenue with Emily Erickson, the city’s Sustainable Transportation Planner. We examined a recent bike/car crash site on Montreal and then bicycled into downtown on the I-35 E trail. Once in downtown, we examined 4 possible entrance exit routes from downtown and looked at how they might be improved/enhanced to make them safer and more accessible. These were Jackson (over I-94), Cedar, the MN History Center parking lot and Kellogg. It was fun. In attendance were: Myself, Jeff Zaayer, Matt Cole, Jesse Mortenson, Jim Ivey (who is running for City Council in Ward 2), Phil Moody (sp?), Gary Fifield, Chris Budel, Mike Madden, Tracy Farr …and I can’t remember the 11th person). Matt posted some pictures on our Facebook page.

Emily Erickson wanted to let us to know that the City of Saint Paul will be hosting three public open houses in September in order to gather public input on the HYPERLINK “http://www.stpaul.gov/index.aspx?NID=4604"Citywide Bicycle Plan.  If the hyperlink doesn’t work you can see and read the draft plan at: HYPERLINK “http://www.stpaul.gov/index.aspx?NID=4604"http://www.stpaul.gov/ index.aspx?NID=4604

The Citywide Bicycle Plan will provide bicycle infrastructure recommendations regarding bikeways, end-trip facilities, and priority implementation projects.  In order to make that plan as relevant as possible, the city wants input from the public on where they’d like to get by bike and what barriers exist today that keep them from doing so.  These open houses will provide an opportunity for the public to share their thoughts on these points.  The open houses will take place from 4:00-7:00pm at the following dates and locations:

Monday, September 12 - HYPERLINK “http://www.stpaul.gov/facilities.aspx?pagenum=3&RID=121&Page= detail”El Rio Vista Recreation Center Thursday, September 22 - HYPERLINK “http://stpaul.gov/facilities.aspx?pagenum=11&RID=152&Page=detail “West Minnehaha Recreation Center Monday, September 26 - HYPERLINK “http://stpaul.gov/facilities.aspx?pagenum=9&RID=144&Page=detail" Phalen Recreation Center

For those who are not able to make it to these open houses, there will be an online alternative, through Survey Monkey, which will go live in September. (Note to Emily– it would be nice if there was an additional open house in downtown and/or in the Highland/MacGrove part of the city).

Also, an intern named Oleg Kotov at Metro Transit’s Facilities Planning Department is collecting feedback on the following two questions:

  1. What types of new bicycle parking amenities (shelters, racks, bike stations, bike&rides, bike rooms, etc) do you think Metro Transit could provide in order to fulfill the unmet needs of the cycling community?

  2. Do you think there’s a need for continued investment in bike lockers at transit facilities or could lockers be phased out if a new type of amenity is introduced?