Parking requirements encourage driving, lead to unnecessary pavement

Credit: The EconomistEnvision Richmond’s Fan District, Monument Avenue, Church Hill, Jackson Ward, etc., without cars parked everywhere. What if instead of vehicle storage, we redesign those spaces to better serve humans and nature?

Imagine how much more attractive our best Richmond neighborhoods could look without cars lining the streets, blocking the tree-ling streetscapes and beautiful homes?

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No more roads. It is hard enough to maintain what we’ve got

Credit: Jupiter Images via SlateAmerica does not need more roads. We have enough pavement in the United States to at least cover the entire state of Georgia (61,000 square miles, and that is an old study). Enough is enough.

According to a recent article published by Slate, “the last thing America needs from [President] Trump’s infrastructure plan is more more roads.”

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Three months in, benefits of bike commuting are paying off

BQ3a_2OCYAAFjxE.jpg largeFor the past couple of years, I’ve made a commitment to bike instead of drive as often as I can, and it is paying off in many ways.

So far in 2017, I’m off to a great start, thanks in part to mild winter weather, better gear, and an understanding and encouraging work place. Continue reading

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City without safe bike network is like swimming pool without shallow end

Cyclists mix with vehicular traffic on the Mayo Bridge in Richmond, Va.

Cyclists mix with vehicular traffic on the Mayo Bridge in Richmond, Va.

I often draw from my experiences as a cyclist to form many of my opinions for improvements and alterations to roadways and bike networks. As someone who bikes often and is accustomed to being able to relax while taking risks among faster, larger vehicles, I’ve learned that that might not be the best strategy.

While children and less-experienced cyclists are usually on my mind, I’m still learning importance for how to plan for the most vulnerable users. Continue reading

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Record number of miles driven is a failure, not an accomplishment

traffic6“It’s Wow Wednesday! U.S. sets record in 2016 with an estimated 3.2 trillion miles traveled.” – Tweet from the Federal Highway Administration.

This is not good news. The “wow” here is that the Federal Highway Administration does not understand that we need to encourage people to drive less, not more. Driving 3.2 trillion miles is not an accomplishment, but rather a failure. It is in the best interest for our country that we promote alternative transportation options, not the consumption and exhaustion of the world’s remaining fossil fuels.  Continue reading

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OK, I’ve become the dad from Calvin & Hobbes

calvindadgasI’m a father. I’m a cyclist. I’m an environmentalist. Sometimes I like to bark out loud about people driving too much, which is wrecking our planet and making it hard for the next generations to thrive in this world.

A friend of mine pointed this out to me, writing “how’s it feel to be a real life version of Calvin’s father?”

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Increase gas taxes to improve our heavily subsidized road network

Photographer - Tom Saunders, VDOT

Traffic Backup on I-95 North at the Intersection with the Downtown Expressway in Richmond. Photographer – Tom Saunders, VDOT

I bike to save money. I bike to save the environment. I bike to improve my health. I also bike to stay away from my car and as often as I can, I look for ways to avoid motorized vehicles when walking, biking or even paddling could get the job done just as well.

Despite the many flaws with cars, they are not my enemy, but I sure do love avoiding them. Read this well-written lede into this article, from the CityLab: Continue reading

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