For most of the ideas below, try working with a local
organization such as Bike
Austin, the Yellow
Bike Project, or the UTC
Bicycle Subcommittee. Please don't try to reinvent the
wheel by starting yet another organization, as many seem to
want to do for some reason. We're never going to get
anywhere if we continue to have a large number of groups and
projects which contain just a few people each (and which quickly die
out soon after tehy're started). Let's finally
pull together under some of the organizations we already
Be the change you want to
see in the world
Usually activists spend their time begging their
government for change. It's easier to effect that change
if you are the government. To that end, one of the most
powerful things bike proponents can do is to get themselves
into positions where they help call the shots. Bike
advocates would be well advised to seek leadership positions
Their local neighborhood organization (which
actually wield a lot of power)
bike stores to include a
red rear flashing light on every bike they sell.
(They can either eat the whopping $5 wholesale cost, or
raise the price of the bike by $5. It's a better deal for
the cyclist too, because that light that costs the shop $5
would cost the cyclist $15.)
Lobby for bike lanes and
bike-friendly streets. See our list of ideal
facilities for bikes.
Bicycle Coalition lobbies for bike
legislation (and opposes legislation which would hurt
cycling). Hook up with them to work on legislative
Lobby for a state law requiring
every driver to take a review course before license
renewal. If one has received 2+ moving
violations, a DUI, or a reckless driving citation, require a
more intensive course including an emotion control
Lobby for a state law which
would revoke the license of any motorist convicted of
causing the death of any other road user (pedestrian,
cyclist, or other motorist).
Demand that local businesses
let bikes use the drive-thru. (The ones that
don't include Bank One, McDonald's, and Taco Bell.) Get
free stickers from Ozone or Waterloo Cycles that say "Let
Bikes Use Drive-Thru", and stick them in the drive-thru
areas of these businesses.
Report cars parked in bike
lanes (on those streets where it's actually
against the law; in lots of places it's not). The police
non-emergency number is 311.
Ride with Jimmy Hudson, a
blind cyclist, who needs tandem riding partners ("bicycle
built for two"). Call Jiimmy at
your Neighborhood Association. Neighborhood
associations have a fair amount of political clout in
Austin. They can make or break proposed bicycle-friendly
projects in their area. Most NA's are open to anyone living
in the neighborhood, not just landowners. They tend to be
run by a small number of enthusiastic people who want their
neighborhood to be a nice place. Many issues that are
important to them are also important to cyclists (e.g. how
to reduce traffic volume and speed). The cores of the groups
tend to be pretty small, and they are always glad to hear of
someone who wants to contribute. You can get your hands on
some of the clout just by showing up! You may not feel like
you're changing the world right away, but by working your
way into the city's informal power structure, you will be
able to contribute significantly in the future.-- Bill
Canfield [Here's a list of Austin NA's.]
Convince the City
Council to ban cars from
parking in bike lanes.
Lobby the City to include bike
lanes on all new roads, or to at least make sure
the outside lane is wide enough to easily fit a car and a
Persuade the City to install
Bicycle Boulevards — barriers in the roadway
every few blocks which prevent cars from going through, but
allow bicycles to pass through. This reduces traffic speeds
and cut-through traffic. Everyone who lives on affected
streets can still get to their homes.
Report Polluting Vehicles. If
you see a motor vehicle pumping out way too much
pollution, you can call 800-453-SMOG and give them
the license plate #, time & date of the sighting, and
street & city of the sighting. Then the Texas Commission on
Environmental Quality will send the owner a
letter asking them to tune up their vehicle. You can also report
Report Cars Parked in Bike
Lanes. Read about that here.
Here's also a PDF of
some "tickets" you can place on the windshields of cars
parked in bike lanes.
Last update: November 2012.
Put this calendar on your website! Copy and paste the following code:
I've tried without success to get local groups to add their events to this calendar (Bike Texas, the Yellow Bike Project, City's Bicycle Program, Bike Austin, etc.)
If you'd like to help edit the calendar, or at least add your group's events to it, then please let me know!
Another site by Michael Bluejay...
Cheapest Airfares. I actually hope you won't fly, because of the pollution it causes. But making this site was my way to get your attention for that message. If you're going to fly anyway, see my top 10 tips for finding cheap airfare, a comparison of the different search engines, and which site to use in which situations.