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Bicycle Advocacy Articles for Newsletters
Cycling Advocacy Newsletter Articles

Contents:
        Rumble Over Rumble Strips & Crumble Shoulders
        How to Organize & Conduct A Successful Bike Day
        Share the Road & Bike With Traffic Campaigns
        Click here for: Information Articles

    Formatting notes: you can easily copy/paste the text and photographs in Rumble Over Rumbe Strips & Crumble Shoulders. Please cite the author, her title, and the New York Bicycling Coalition's URL & email addresses.
If prefer an MS Word or Adobe Acrobat formatted copy with embedded pictures; or a plain ASCII text formatted copy with separate pictures; of this article please contact Harvey at Cyclotour Guide Books, cyclotour@cyclotour.com, please place "Bike Article" in the Subject line.

Rumble Over Rumble Strips and Crumble Shoulders
By Jennifer Clunie, NYBC Executive Director, New York Bicycling Coalition
www.nybc.net, nybc@nybc.net

    New York State probably does not receive enough credit for being a bicycling friendly cycling destination. Granted, urban areas often do not receive the investment in bicycle infrastructure they deserve, but since the mid-1960s the NYS Department of Transportation's (NYS DOT) policy has been to build State maintained roads with a smooth paved and striped from the motor vehicle lane shoulder.
    The NYS DOT's policy is to maintain this network of State roads with an adequate minimum shoulder width (>4 ft.) In the 1990's, the DOT reconstructed many State maintained roads with wider paved shoulders. These wide smooth paved shoulders are one reason out of state bicycle tourists consistently positively comment on cycling in New York State. The amount of available shoulder space afforded to them surprises and delights both long distance and day trip cyclotourists.

Rt 100 Rumble Strips 2808a column pic.jpg (76036 bytes)

Rumble Strip Problem
    Since late spring 2008, the existence of this wonderful roadway shoulder network is under threat according to emails sent to the New York Bicycling Coalition (NYBC.) Early in summer, 2008, Dave Wilson, president of the Westchester Cycle Club, alerted the Coalition that the NYS DOT repaved a section of Route 100 in Westchester County with a length of "rumble" strips. These rumble strips jeopardize the safety of all bicyclists and deter bicycle tourists from using Route 100. A full description of the Route 100 issue, including articles in the local press, is on Wilson’s blog: http://cycling.lohudblogs.com/author/dwilson/
    Although bicyclists have the legal right to ride in the roadway lane, rumble strips arbitrarily force bicyclists to ride in the motor vehicle lane on busy roadways like Route 100.

Original Crumble Shoulder.jpg (76725 bytes)                    

Crumble Shoulder Problem
    In various regions of the State, the NYS Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) is testing experimental “crumble shoulders” of a coarse and loose material in an attempt to reduce the costs of creating smooth paved shoulders on State maintained roads. It remains to be analyzed how well the new shoulder material will hold up and reduce the costs of paving roadways. The New York Bicycling Coalition (NYBC) already has received comments from concerned bicyclists and pedestrians indicating that the "crumble shoulder material is potentially dangerous for bicyclists, pedestrians, and even motorists. The rough material frequently becomes loose and thrusts upwards if an motor vehicle veers onto the shoulder. Like the existence of rumble strips, the rough texture of "crumble shoulders" force bicyclists to alternate between cycling in the motor vehicle lane with cycling on the shoulder.

New York Bicycling Coalition's Response
    The NYBC is dedicated to preserving New York State’s wide and smoothly paved shoulder network. It is an important asset for use by the State’s residents (bicyclists and pedestrians) as well as visiting cyclists. Soon after learning of the rumble strip and crumble shoulder controversies, we discussed the Route 100 matter in a recent meeting with NYS DOT Commissioner Astrid Glynn. In addition, we pursued amicable communication with Region 8 (Hudson Valley) DOT officials.
    The NYBC has reservations and concerns about the adoption of these roadway “improvements,” especially in regards to compromising bicyclists’ safety and the quality of riding surfaces on thousands of miles otherwise scenic roadways. The NYBC will continue to correspond and meet with the NYS DOT on these matters.

Take Action, Every Bicyclist Can Be Involved
    If you simply are "apprehensive" or are more concerned about the existence of "rumble strips" and "crumble shoulders" then express your apprehension and concern in a written (email or paper) communication to your club's government relations or advocacy chair; to the NYBC (nybc@nybc.net); and contact the local NYS DOT regional office about your concerns.

    Do not hesitate to contact the New York Bicycling Coalition regarding important local bicycle and pedestrian related issues in your community. Now, at the beginning of 2009, we hope you will take the time to either become a member of NYBC, or renew your membership. You can affirm your commitment for better bicycling conditions in New York State www.nybc.net/donate and joining us. NYBC: Working Toward a More Bicycle-Friendly New York
    The New York Bicycling Coalition (NYBC) monitors government activities concerning bicycling and pedestrian issues. The Coalition advocates on behalf of the communities to the NY legislature and state agencies for better bicycling and walking conditions. We provide technical assistance to clubs, non-profit organizations, and local governments working to foster a "Complete Streets" concept of transportation development. This is article is one example of the NYBC's response to the many challenging local transportation situations around the State.


Bike Day

Formatting Notes:
    This is a template of How to Organize & Conduct A Successful Bike Day
    It is designed to be used by a bicycling club; a civic organization/community group; govern-
ment bureau; or a private enterprise; actually anyone.
    You need only to insert your logo and other information in the spaces.
    A community Bike Day does not have to be held during Bike Week (May).   Many

communities in the northern part of the United States hold Bike Week in the Fall when there
are fewer competing events (everything from high school and community sports to just plain
sunny weather).
    It was originally a MS Publisher document, 2 text frames on each side of an 81/2 x 11

sheet of paper in landscape printing mode.  The font size and style should be changed.
    It is copyrighted but permission is NOT needed to use How To Organize & Conduct a
Successful Bike Day
.
    A number of items in this template can be simply deleted. They have been inserted into the
original brochure to give you some ideas of the range of activities your club can conduct during
Bike Week or during a Bike Day program.
    The Rochester Bicycling Club's Bike Week Committee sent this brochure to every

municipality, civic organization (Rotary, Lions, religious groups, neighborhood organizations)
and many businesses in a nine county area around Rochester, New York.  Your Club or
Metropolitan Planning Organization catchment area may not be as large but try to do a mass
mailing.   The first year only four municipalities conducted a bike day via their recreation
departments.   By the third year, over 50 municipalities conducted community bike days.

Page 1

How To Organize & Conduct A Successful Bike Day
By Harvey Botzman
[Insert: Your logo]
Bike Week
[Insert: Place, Day, Date & Time]
Sponsored by
[Insert: Your Club's Name]
[or the Local Municipality name]
[telephone number/fax number]
[e-mail address]
[web site]

Page 2

Bike Week
Goals

    To encourage:
        Individuals to ride bicycles in a safe manner;
        Vehicle drivers to be more aware of bicyclists;
        Individuals to commute to work using a bicycle;
        Individuals to use a bicycle as transport to do every day errands;
        Individuals and groups to ride their bicycles for recreation & better health;
        Communities to work for improved roadway conditions for bicycle riding;
        Communities to plan and make recreational trails accessible for bicyclists;
        Communities to officially proclaim [Insert day & date] as Bicycle Month/Day.

Bike Week
[Insert: Days & Dates]

[Insert: A blurb about your Club's Bike Week activities in past years or about the Club's
current  activities/goals.]

Bike Week Events
[Insert: your Club's events, rides etc. during Bike Week]
    These are some of the events which  the Rochester Bicycling Club has sponsored:
Roll & Stroll Commuter Challenge
    A friendly competition between businesses to determine which has the greatest 

percentage of employees who commute to work via bicycle or by walking/skating to work.
Commuter Test Rides
    An experienced bicycle commuter maintains a schedule and meets new cyclocommuters

along a given route. Bicyclists who want to try to commute to work are given hints on how to
commute as they are bicycling to work.
Safety Workshops & Repair Clinics
    Basic bicycle repair clinics (how to fix a flat; checking and adjusting brakes) are conducted

by Bike Club members or bike shop employees. With the help of local and State Police
bicycle safety workshops are held & safety information is distributed on Bike Day.
Share the Road & Bike With Traffic media campaign

    A mass media campaign to inform motorists and bicyclist to Share the Road; A mass
media campaign to inform bicyclists to Ride With Traffic;
    Using graphics designed specifically for these campaigns.
      [See Notes for information on how to obtain these graphics.]
    Articles on the importance of sharing the road and bicycling with traffic are prepared to send
to newspapers, local magazines, free distribution newspapers, civic organizations and
government organization newsletters. Television and radio stations are asked to publicize
Share the Road and Bicycle Ride With Traffic with public service announcements, interviews
on daily news programs and special community interview programs; and in movie theaters the
graphics were displayed between movies as preview advertising slides.  These articles should
include some hard data on bicycle use nationally, in municipalities of a similar size as yours
and your municipality; bicycle accident rates, etc. The local Metropolitan Planning
Organization, police department or State data center usually has some statistics on these
bicycle related items.
    Distribution of bumper stickers with Share the Road to spread the message.
    Share the Road banners hanging over roadways are used to advertise the message to
motorists. 
    Public transit buses with outside advertising also have the messages & graphics Share
the Road
and Bike with Traffic emblazoned on their sides.
     [Graphics were specifically designed for these media campaigns (see Notes).]

Effective Cycling Programs
    Trained instructors teach adults and children effective and safe riding techniques.
    Classes begin at several locations during throughout the year.
Club Rides
    The [Insert name] Bicycle Club will have regular Club rides scheduled each day during 

Bike Week. Call the Club's Ride Line, tel.: [____], or look on our web site: [_____] for
start locations and times [or list the rides.]

Page 3

Bike Day

Bike Day Events
    There is no set formula for a community’s Bike Day. Most communities include these
    basic events:
        Family ride
        Safety Workshop
        Repair Clinic
        Proclamation Ceremonies
Bike Week Committee Assistance
    [Insert Club's name] Bike Week Committee will:
        Provide posters with the place, day, & time of Bike Day in your community.
        Provide a ride leader, if a local ride leader is not available.
        Help you contact the Police and Sheriff’s safety officers.
        Help you find an individual who will conduct repair, commuting, effective cycling, or

touring workshops.
    [Insert: Club’s Bike Week chair’s name and contact information]
Procedure:
    1. Choose a date and time, it does not have to be on a weekend.
        A weekday evening Bike Day during Bike Week can be very successful. Many adults like

to bicycle alone/with friends or to ride with their children after work in the early evening.
    2. Contact the Town or Village Recreation Director & the Council Recreation Chairperson.  

Have the Director work with you to arrange Bike Day. Ask the Council Person to sponsor
& present the Proclamation.
        Recreation Director:                 Tel:
        Council Person:                        Tel:
        Is a permit necessary?              Cost?
    3. Contact Bike Week Chairperson, [Insert name], Tel.: [____] to tell him/her of the

Community’s day, time, location & events for Bike Day.
    4. Contact the State/Town/Village Police in your area. Request that the Safety Officer to

conduct a bicycle safety workshop on Bike Day.
        Officer:                                         Tel.:
    5. Call a local bike shop. Ask the owner or manager to provide an experienced person to

conduct a basic bicycle repair clinic.
        Bike Shop & Person:                 Tel:

Page 4

    6. Ask around your town or village: Who’s a bicyclist?
        Contact the bicyclists & ask if they will lead a 5-10 mile ride around the town or village

on Bike Day.  Bike Day organizers have been known to stop bicyclists on the road to ask
this question!
        Bicyclist:             Tel.:
        Bicyclist:             Tel.:
        Bicyclist:             Tel.:
    7. Other items:
        Water/soft drinks/juice
        Refreshments
        Prizes
        Other

Call everyone the week before Bike Day to confirm that they will be participating!

That’s all there is to it!
Show up on Bike Day! & it will be a success!

This brochure was originally prepared by Harvey Botzman for the
Rochester Bicycling Club, '97 Bike Week Committee and
the Genesee Transportation Council.

Harvey Botzman, PO Box 10585, Rochester, NY 14610-0585; cyclotour@cyclotour.com;
http://www.cyclotour.com
Rochester Bicycling Club, PO Box 10100, Rochester, NY 14610, 585 420-2953;
http://www.rochesterbicyclingclub.org
Genesee Transportation Council, 55 W. Broad St., Rochester, NY 14604, 585 232-6240, gtcmpo@frontiernet.net; http://www.gtcmpo.org

Harvey Botzman and the Rochester Bicycling Club, Inc., 1997, 1999.

Please acknowledge that you obtained the original brochure and information from the
Cyclotour Guide Books web site with the following citation:
Bike Day Brochure courtesy of Harvey Botzman, Cyclotour Guide Books,

http://www.cyclotour.com
Please send a post card or e-mail to Harvey if you use any of the material in this template.

Harvey Botzman writes and publishes bicycle tour guides. He can be reached at
PO Box 10585, Rochester, NY 14610; cyclotour@cyclotour.com ; www.cyclotour.com ;
tel. & fax: 585 244-6157.

NOTES
    1. You want to freely distribute "Share the Road" and "Share the Trail" bumper stickers and

    banners. These are available from many sources including your state's Department of
    Transportation or local Metropolitan Planning Organization.
    2. A Metropolitan Transportation Organization (MPO) is a local government agency that is
    responsible for planning transportation, primarily surface transportation, facilities as well as
    reviewing, distributing and monitoring Federal Highway Administration funds (e. g., TEA-21)

    in your area. Among other things an MPO is responsible for making certain that new and
    reconstruction highway projects include bicycle related facilities (e. g., wide shoulders
    (AASHTO guideline standards + a few meters), bicycle lanes, highway department share
    the road
signs) in addition to bicycle facilities allocated under the bicycle enhancement
    funds provision of TEA 21 and other Federal highway laws.
    3. It is to the individual bicyclist’s and local Club’s advantage to make certain that the local
    MPO has an active Bicycle-Pedestrian Advisory Committee. The Club should make certain
    that a Board member serves on this Committee and goes to its meetings. The Club should
    make certain that the MPO hires a transportation planner to specifically plan and advocate
    for bicycle (and pedestrian) facilities
.

Share the Road & Bike With Traffic Campaign

Goals
    A mass media campaign to inform motorists and bicyclist to Share the Road;
    A mass media campaign to inform bicyclists to Ride With Traffic;
Process
    Using graphics designed specifically for these campaigns.
      See Notes for information on how to obtain these graphics.
    Articles on the importance of sharing the road and bicycling with traffic are prepared to send

to newspapers, local magazines, free distribution newspapers, civic organizations and
government organization newsletters. Television and radio stations are asked to publicize
Share the Road and Bicycle Ride With Traffic with public service announcements, interviews
on daily news programs and special community interview programs; and in movie theaters
the graphics were displayed between movies as preview advertising slides. 
    These articles should include some hard data on bicycle use nationally, in municipalities of

a similar size as yours and your municipality; bicycle accident rates, etc.
    The local Metropolitan Planning Organization, police department or State data center

usually have some statistics on these bicycle related items.  See the links pages on the
Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute's web site for additional data sources.
    Distribution of bumper stickers with Share the Road to spread the message.
    Share the Road banners hanging over roadways; have been used to advertise the message

to motorists. 
    Public transit buses with outside advertising also have the messages & graphics Share

the Road
and Bike with Traffic emblazoned on their sides.
     Graphics were specifically designed for these media campaigns (see Notes).

c. Harvey Botzman, 1994, 2000.  Cyclotour Guide Books, http://www.cyclotour.com, 
cyclotour@cyclotour.com.
Notes:
    1. What you really want is "Share the Road" and "Share the Trail" bumper stickers and banners.
    2. A Metropolitan Transportation Organization (MPO) is a local government agency which
    reviews and distributes Federal Highway Administration funds (e. g., TEA-21) in your area.
    Among other things an MPO is responsible for making certain that new and reconstruction
    highway projects include bicycle related facilities (e. g., wide shoulders (AASHTO guideline 
    standards + a few meters), bicycle lanes, highway department share the road signs) in

    addition to bicycle facilities allocated under the bicycle enhancement funds provision of
    TEA 21 and other Federal highway laws.
    3.  It is to the individual bicyclist’s and local Club’s advantage to make certain the local MPO has

    an active Bicycle-Pedestrian Advisory Committee. The Club should make certain Club member
    serves on this Committee and goes to its meetings. The Club should make certain the MPO
    hires a transportation planner to specifically plan and advocate for bicycle (and pedestrian) facilities.
    4. Additional Share the Road/Bike With Traffic graphics and bike safety materials can be
    obtained from your local Metropolitan Planning Organization or state Department of Transportation. 
Mr. Botzman has written 8 bicycle touring guide books:
'Round Lake Ontario: A Bicyclist's Tour Guide, Erie Canal Bicyclist & Hiker Tour Guide,
'Round Lake Erie: A Bicyclist's  Tour Guide, 'Round Lake Michigan: A Bicyclist's Tour Guide,
'Round Lake Huron: A Bicyclist's Tour Guide, 'Round Lake Superior: A Bicyclist's Tour Guide,

Finger Lakes Bicyclist's Tour Guide,
and Long Distance Bicycle Touring Primer.  
[Publication's editor may omit up to 5 titles.]
    Harvey will answer your questions on bicycle touring if you write to him at Cyclotour Guide Books,
PO Box 10585, Rochester, NY, USA; www.cyclotour.com ; cyclotour@cyclotour.com


[ Home ] [ Books & Maps ] [ Order Form ] [ Author ] [ Table of Contents ] [ Book Trade ] [ Bike Events ]
[ Great Lakes Bike Books ] [ Lake Ontario Bike Book ] [ Lake Erie Bike Book ] [ Lake Michigan Bike Book ] [ Lake Huron Bike Book ]
[ New York State Bike Books ] [ Erie Canal Bike Book ] [ Finger Lakes Bike Book
[ Other Maps & Books ] [ New Zealand Biking ] [ French Canal Biking & Barging ] [ Lot River Canoe Guide ] [ Stratford, Ontario ]
[ Bike Events ] [ Finger Lakes Biking Events ] [ Bicycling Statistics ] [ Links ] [ Comments ] [ Improved Rtes ] [ Featured Biking Areas ]
[ Newsletter Content Articles ] [ Boxing a Bike ] [ N. Am. Bike Touring Info ] [ Complete Streets ] [ Bike Advocacy Articles ]

Send mail to cyclotour@cyclotour.com  with questions or comments about this web site.
Last modified: June 04, 2009