Bike Summit to be Held in New Jersey Saturday

A New Jersey group that works to improve the safety of cyclists and pedestrians will be holding its third confab for like-minded advocates this

Prof. John Pucher at last year's summit


Perhaps characterized as the local version of the National Bike Summit held each spring in Washington, DC, the Jersey group works solely on state issues such as creating Safe Routes to School programs, or improving overall bike routes in your area.

The summit is being held at the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center in New Brunswick, which is the center of much of the planning and advocacy efforts being undertaken there.

Established by the three-year-old New Jersey Bike and Walk Coalition, the all-day meeting will feature presentations by movers and shakers like John Sowell, who rode his bicycle across America last summer and happens also to be president of the Irvington City Council.

John Pucher, a professor in Urban Planning and Policy Development Program at the Bloustein School at Rutgers will deliver an address which is sure to be fascinating, to the point, and chock full of exemplary problems in New Jersey’s infrastructure. Last year he compared the state quite unfavorably to the more advanced infrastructures that have been developed in European cities. Hopefully New Jersey has made some progress since last year’s summit.

Attendees at last year's summit came to talk about Rutherford, NJ bike access

Perhaps shedding some light on the topic will be Sheree Davis, bicycle and pedestrian coordinator for the department of transportation, who will speak about how much closer New Jersey has come to its ambitious goal of establishing Complete Streets across the state.

Charles Brown, senior research specialist at the Voorhees center will be presenting a research study undertaken to provide more insight towards establishing a three-foot rule for drivers when passing cyclists and pedestrians: many of the members of a working group that has been trying to develop those guidelines, yours truly included have been pushing for a six-foot rule with the idea that most drivers always bend the rules, and many can’t identify what 3 feet is anyhow. That working group will have an opportunity for a short follow-up discussion before the summit is convened.

Among the other speakers will be Jeff Miller, president, Alliance for Biking and Walking, Washington, D.C., Jerry Fried, mayor of Montclair; Paul Matacera, former mayor of North Brunswick, Alissa Simcox, director of education at the League of American Bicyclists, Nicole Wynands, program specialist for the Bicycle Friendly America Program., and Jim Cahill, mayor, New Brunswick, N.J., among others.

At the close of the summit there will be a short walking tour of New Brunswick, led by Bob Belvin, president of the New Brunswick Historical Society. A short bike ride through New Brunswick led by New Jersey certified cycling instructors of the League of American Bicyclists will also take place, so bring your bicycle!

The event is open to the public. Advance registration is required by Wednesday, Feb. 22; individual registration is $50 per person and student registration $25 per person. Click here for registration and the agenda.

WHEN:                Saturday, Feb. 25, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

WHERE:            Special Events Forum, Civic Square Building, 33 Livingston Ave., New Brunswick, N.J.

Media Contact: Karyn Olsen

Contact: Steve Manas
732-932-7084, ext. 612


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