Who would a bike voter support for mayor of Boston?
Over the last five years Mayor Thomas Menino and his administration have gotten the wheels rolling on a bike program that addresses equity, education, enforcement, and better bike infrastructure. Ask any cyclist to compare Boston now to Boston in 2007 and they’ll certainly tell you it’s night and day.
But compare Boston to Chicago or New York City and it’s a different story. In those cities mayors have hired transportation leaders like Gabe Klein and Janet Sadik-Kahn whose names have become synonymous with making huge strides on a progressive vision that includes bicycles as a viable daily commuting option for a significant portion of the urban population. They’ve made moves that have been highly controversial, such as the Prospect West cycletrack in New York that raised a firestorm of media and neighborhood protest, yet eventually was accepted and supported by the neighborhood. Boston has just under a $1 million line item for bike infrastructure, but Chicago is investing some $28 million in a 100-mile system of cycletracks, and Portland is set to spend $600 million to achieve a plan for 2030.
Boston Mayoral Bike Questionnaire 2013. Candidate’s answers will be released on Facebook, Twitter andbostoncyclistunion.org as they come in, starting tomorrow!
Which of Boston’s 12 candidates for mayor will not only match Menino’s dedication to biking, but also step it up a notch and catch up to these aspiring world-class biking cities?
To find out, the Bike Union convened a group of concerned cyclists that represent a wide diversity of cyclists, from the most risk averse to the occupational cyclist, to determine the 10 most important questions for Boston’s new leader. Those organizations and people are Bikes Not Bombs, Biking in Boston with Kids Blog, Boston Collective Delivery, Boston Cyclists Union, BU Bikes, Lane Change, MassBike, Roxbury Bicycle Brigade, and the participants themselves.
Last week, this video was distributed to 11 of the 12 campaigns (we’re still trying to reach the lone Republican on the ballot, David James Wyatt). As the answers come in, the Bike Union and all the groups listed above will be sharing them with the wider bike community via social media, websites, and e-mail. Please help us make sure every bike voter you know sees the results!
Dear BCU: God knows I support you guys and all you do, but would like to see more care and appreciation toward promoting recent efforts that only now should be maturing. Here below is the question I would have posed to the candidates -just say’n.
South Bay Harbor Trail Coalition
Mr./Ms. Candidate: What would you do to implement construction of the South Bay Harbor Trail. This 3.5 mile multi-use path is now at 100% design, and was guided by the BTD through the Menino Administration and included input from neighborhood, business, and institutional abutters, using multiple grants (from Mass Highway, the Barr Foundation, and the New England Foundation for the Arts, to name a few backers). This path is, in effect, the pedestrian and bicycle use mitigation for the expansion and perpetuation of the divisive (and otherwise dangerous) Southeast Expressway/Artery approach highways completed about a decade ago -particularly at Broadway Bridge in a South Boston. What say ye? What will you do to connect JP, Roxbury, the South End and Chinatown, to the burgeoning benefits -economic and environmental- of the Fort Point/South Boston Waterfront and Boston Harbor? Remember -not every rider dons Lycra, and feels safe in the street. The plans are place.