Advocacy Meeting – Dec. 4th



Advocacy Meeting – Dec. 4th

Sorry everyone… I got tied up in the holiday festivities and enjoyed a nice long vacation 😉  However, it meant I forgot to post an advocacy announcement.  Yes, we are having our monthly advocacy meeting.  It will be tomorrow, Dec. 4th @6pm, at the office of Red Five Sports Group (269 S Main St, Providence).

I’ll try to go back and edit this post later in the day with an agenda… if I don’t get around to it, just show up and join the fun!


  • Barry
    Dec 3, 2008 at 11:50 am

    I cannot make this meeting but please note that earlier that day, the Governor's Blue Ribbon Panel will be meeting to make recommedations on the future of transportation financing, now limited by reliance on a fixed gas tax per gallon which has led to a declining revenue stream for RIDOT (and RIPTA.) The availability of future funding for bike path projects and repairs as well as road maintenance is affected, though any change in the revenue stream will require General Assembly action.

    There will be an opportunity to comment on this, and any other transportation question, at the environment community meeting scheduled with RIDOT Director Lewis on Thursday morning Dec 11. To participate, or get an item on the agenda, please contact me ( or Sue Barker or Eric Weis who usually attend these meetings for the bike community.

    If I could attend I would have also liked to discuss the "3-foot" passing law now passed by CT, the drivers manual update, and efforts in NY (by the city planning department) to require bike parking facilities in all large projects.


  • Dec 5, 2008 at 7:27 am

    I have problems with several of Barry's points. No advance warning of an important transportation meeting? Too late to solicit "balanced" viewpoints? Public comments only through 3 biased advocates? Looking for new (unenforceable) laws as opposed to enforcing EXISTING ones?

    RIDOT needs a TIME OUT! Yes, bikeways are nice, but ALL ROADS must STILL support biking (except limited access highways, which MUST offer bicycling bypasses). Laws are dandy, WHEN THEY ARE ENFORCED, particularly those that apply to RIDOT itself. I see new lines being painted on new pavement that illegally increase the number of lanes without expanding the width at the expense of shoulders. Or worse, horribly widening for extraneous lanes without shoulders. What they did to Lambert Lind (Rt 5 at Lowes) is criminal.

    RIDOT is eager to raise money for road building. It's what they do. Bike building is an entirely separate endeavor according to federal mandates. Just because there's a funding shortfall for roads doesn't mean bike infrastructure can be curtailed. In fact, some federal funding to RI was cut back BECAUSE RIDOT hasn't met FWHA bicycling and pedestrian directives. If they'd had they wouldn't be in crisis mode. And the bridge fiasco came from a decade of negligence, not power washing steel supports each spring to clear the corrosive salt. Who has been fired over this?

    Roads are important. They (and abandoned margins and public parks) are the only real estate legally shared by all citizens… NOT JUST MOTORISTS! But the 4 lanes of relentless traffic on Warwick Avenue forced me on the sidewalk yesterday. The sad part is that there are empty side roads that almost touch alongside the airport that could easily be made to connect for cycling and walking without ever having to fight motor traffic there. A little asphalt and federal compliance could go a long way to making RI completely bikeable, as it should be. RI's focus on unsustainable motor access ought to be curtailed, and it looks as though it will be by default… no money.

    Where's the 35 million federal dollars that Senator Reed secured for bicycling infrastructure here? It can't be applied for roads. They put in the entire Blackstone Bikeway for only $12 million. In comparison, the 2.5 mile connector from Quonset to Rt 4 was 10 times that to date and not yet finished. Taxpayers seem to have no say whatever, and yet it's THEIR MONEY! I'd use bike money to connect hundreds of dead ends with bike pass throughs. Who wants to compete with cars and trucks anyway? Given real alternatives, people would chose bikes over them. Only biking and walking are sustainable.