For the past three years I have worked alongside you as we fought, one street at a time, to make the Boston area safer for people to bike. We’ve won countless victories, and the fruits of our labor are evident all over the city.
It seems like every month a new stretch of bike infrastructure is being installed somewhere in the Boston area. Where three years ago I rode in a door-zone bike lane, there’s now a parking-protected bike lane. The one-way streets I’ve salmoned on everyday for years now have signs that read “Do Not Enter (Except Bicycles).” When I stop at a red light, I find that, not only am I not the only person on a bike waiting at a light, there are sometimes dozens of people on bikes in front and behind me.
It’s these changes, both in the conditions of our streets and in the growing number of people on bicycles, that have given me so much joy and inspiration over the past three years. There’s nothing that has motivated me more to fight for safer streets than riding my bike on a newly opened protected bike lane, and occasionally getting held up by “bike traffic”.
I’ve also been incredibly lucky to work with some of the kindest and most passionate people I’ve ever met. You might not know it, but I only became a bike commuter in 2012, when I decided that I’d had enough of being stuck in traffic or sitting on a stopped train. I came to my first bike party the next year, and since then my bike family has grown beyond counting.
That is why it is with a mix of sadness and excitement that I share this news with you. December 29th will be my last day as a staff member of the Boston Cyclists Union. In January I will be starting a position as a public involvement specialist at a planning and engineering firm. I’ll still be involved in the projects that are making our cities and towns safer and better for people who walk and bike as a means of transportation, and you may even see me at some public meetings for projects in your neighborhood.
Departing the Bike Union caps three of the best years of my life. It has truly been a pleasure to work with all of you, and I could not be more grateful for all the friends I have made through the bike community.
I’d like to invite you all to celebrate these past three years, and the people who have helped make them so great, on Tuesday, January 9th for the Bike Union’s Annual Volunteer Appreciation Party at Flat Top Johnny’s. We’ll recognize our volunteers and supporters, give out amazing raffle prizes to folks who volunteered this year, and usher in a new era for the Bike Union.
Now, you may be asking, “Who will replace Doug?!” Well, the answer might be: YOU! Have you always dreamed of working to build a grassroots movement to transform our streets, neighborhoods and city into a place that is safe and convenient for people of all ages and abilities to bike as a means of transportation? Then keep a look out for a job opening with the Bike Union. We’ll be posting more details soon!
Thanks again for all of your support over the past three years. I hope to see you on the 9th, and until then, enjoy the holidays and Happy New Year!