Wrapping up the National Bike Summit

Mike Reuter, Todd Scott, Cullen Watkins

Mike Reuter, Todd Scott, Cullen Watkins

Here’s additional information from the National Bike Summit.

Bicycle Respect and Recognition

We reported earlier that Congressman Oberstar said, We need to make bicyclists a standard transportation mode by law.

BikePortland.org published more information on Oberstar’s initiative last week:

Today at the National Bike Summit in Washington D.C., Oberstar will meet with the country’s top bike lawyers to discuss the potential of a new legislative initiative to draft the country’s first piece of legal policy that would directly relate to the respect and recognition of bicycles as users of our roadways.

Portland bike lawyer Ray Thomas… describes the initiative as a way to create a federal law to ensure equitable treatment of people on bicycles who are involved in crashes. Too often, he says, drivers do not receive serious charges in collision cases. The way the system is set up now, police officers and prosecutors (for a variety of reasons) will often not even attempt to press serious charges against motorists.

Oberstar wants to fix the system so there’s a better chance that justice will be done.

A Plan for Circuit City Stores

One of the most interesting ideas I heard at the Summit was at an IMBA advocacy session. Sitting next to IMBA trail guru Rich Edwards, I began discussing potential indoor mountain bike facilities in Detroit.

Rich mentioned another more suburban opportunity.

567 Circuit City stores have closed around the U.S. These stores are large, well-lit, have concrete floors, heat, water, and very few uses — especially in this market.

One alternative idea is to make them into indoor dirt parks.

John Burke (right) holds a Detroit Gets Green pin

John Burke (right) holds a Detroit Gets Green pin

Trek Ride in Detroit

I attended the Summit with Mike Reuter and Cullen Watkins from American Cycle and Fitness. They invited me to a Trek dealer event at the Summit hosted by President John Burke.

After giving John a brief overview of what we’re achieving in Detroit, he offered to come to town this spring for an urban tour.

Detroit is 140 square miles with zero bike shops stocking new bikes on their floor.

Cyclists are Important Users

Ray LaHood, the Department of Transportation Secretary has a blog where he recently left comments on attending the National Bike Summit.

On Wednesday, I had the pleasure of addressing the National Bike Summit. I was invited to speak as a member of the Obama administration, but I have been a supporter of bicycling for many years and was a member of the Congressional Bike Caucus when I was in Congress.

Still, I don’t think the League of American Bicyclists knew what to expect when they invited me to their summit.

I hope they were pleasantly surprised because I am committed to investing in programs that encourage bikes to coexist with other modes and to safely share our roads and bridges. And there’s strong support in Congress for these goals as well.

Secretary LaHood also noted his excitement for the Active Transportation pilot program. The city of Detroit has submitted a proposal for participating in this program under the next federal transportation bill.

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One Response to “Wrapping up the National Bike Summit”

  1. PedalGR on WGVU’s The Morning Show | PedalGR Says:

    […] Detroit Greenways Coordinator Todd Scott covered things quite well – Kick-off dinner; Day 2 – Breakout sessions; Day 3 – Lobby day and our legislative “asks”; National Bike Summit Wrapup […]

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