Straight from my e-mail inbox to your computer screen – It’s finally happening! People have come together to make a multi-modal transportation advocacy group for New Orleans! We’re talking bikes, buses, light rail, streetcars, pedestrians, unicycles, hovercrafts, mules & horses (alright, maybe not too many horses because biking through poo is no fun).
But seriously, folks, Transportation Alternative in NYC has made a huge impact on improving mass transit and bicycle and pedestrian amenities and advocating for the people of the city who decide not to drive. Transport NOLA is bringing that multi-modal, “we’re all in this together,” model of advocacy to New Orleans. Transport NOLA is starting their campaign by focusing on rail improvements, especially pushing for a light rail system that will serve the entire city and just not a handful of neighborhoods like our current streetcar system. Check out the “Where” section and you’ll see where bike and pedestrian facilities come into play too. (I’m not too crazy about this “bike lane in the middle of streetcar tracks” idea in the Tulane Station model, but maybe with modern streetcars, you and do it up so wheels don’t get caught. I’ll look into this and make sure a bunch of poorly designed bike lanes don’t end up all over the city.)
I knew this was brewin‘, but I was really surprised to see how quickly this has come together. The website looks great and they already have some concept designs online!
The kick-off event is THIS FRIDAY at the Rusty Nail (1100 Constance St in the Warehouse District a few blocks south of Lee Circle) from 6-9 pm.
I, of course, will not be there due to this “you have to be in Cincinnati to take classes”/”you’re too close to graduation to transfer” situation, but you should really go and get involved. This will be an excellent opportunity to create a forum in which all of us (advocates and users are various non-personal motor vehicle transportation modes) can come together, and work together, to improve the city and region.
Crescent Fund Update:
Thanks to everyone who voted for us! We’re really excited to get this cash infusion so we can move forward with getting incorporated as a non-profit and putting money towards the printing! Look for a “Bike to the Market” map in the summer on Market Umbrella and Crescent City Farmers Market’s websites!
Meeting with the City Update:
Also, our meeting with the city folks I was talking about should be happening soon! I’m pretty excited about that. I’ve had some really great conversations with people over their bike facilities desires for the city.
I think the next step after this is maybe to have a New Orleans Cyclists Round Table event where we can get everyone working on advocacy in the same room and work on some common goals. I feel like people working in direct action (bike co-ops, event organizing), policy recommendations, and policy making aren’t really communicating that well. I try to bridge that gap as much as possible, but it’s amazing to me who doesn’t know each other here. While we all like promoting cycling in different ways, I think we could all work together to achieve our common goals faster.
Nicole from MBC and I were talking about maybe hosting a big social event just to get people introduced to one another before we start working on well, work. Hopefully we can get that organized over the summer when I get back in town (which will be mid-June/early July).
Hey Everyone! NolaCycle is going to have a meeting with some Big Shots from the city next week. We’ve been asked to talk about our project and share “big” ideas for bike facilities in New Orleans, especially exclusive bike roads (think the path along the lake shore in Chicago) and some ideas for general improvements and policies that the city could implement.
So if there is really anything bike-wise you’d like to see you want the city to hear about, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll work it into my presentation. But if you have any really good ideas for exclusive bike routes or new paths, that would is what I’m really looking to pass along.
Thanks for your suggestions!
New Orleans is getting serious about streetscape improvement! The article mentions that bike racks will be added to these streets (’bout time!), but nothing about bike lanes. These projects are focused on small stretches of roads, the main business-districts of neighborhoods, not entire corridors like Wisner or St. Claude where bike facilities have been added.
Robert Mendoza from Public Works said in the article people should start seeing work done by this summer, and the entire phase of the project should be complete by next year. I’m not sure if he means just the Canal Street and Alcee Fortier Boulevard projects or all of them. The article isn’t very clear.
Anyway, check out this article and attend the public meetings if they’re happening in your neighborhood.
The Ninth Ward streetscape meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Martin Luther King Jr. School at 1617 Caffin Ave.
The Broad Street and Lafitte streetscape meeting will be 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at 3700 Canal St.
Here’s the list of all the streetscape projects:
· Bayou Road (Broad Street to Rocheblave Street)
· Elysian Fields Avenue (Foy Street to St. Aloysius/Stephen Girard Street)
· Gentilly Boulevard (Pauger Street to Elysian Fields Avenue)
· Caton Street (Norman Meyer Avenue to Elysian Fields Avenue)
· Freret Street (Jefferson Avenue to Napoleon Avenue)
· Alcee Fortier Boulevard (Chef Menteur Highway to the Michoud Lagoon)
· Read Boulevard (I-10 to Dwyer Road)
· Lake Forest Boulevard (Bundy Road to Wright Boulevard)
· Crowder Boulevard (I-10 to Dwyer Road)
· O.C. Haley Boulevard (Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard – US90B)
· General Pershing Street (S. Broad Street to S. Miro Street)
· St. Roch Avenue (Marais Street to N. Derbigny Street)
· S. Clark Street (Tulane Avenue to Banks Street)
· D’hemecourt Street (S. Clark Street to S. Jefferson Davis Parkway)
· Baudin Street (S. Clark Street to S. Jefferson Davis Parkway)
· Harrison Avenue (Orleans Avenue to West End Boulevard)
· N. Claiborne Avenue (Esplanade Avenue to St. Anthony Street)
· St. Bernard Avenue (N. Claiborne Avenue to Miro Street)
· General Meyer Avenue (Hendee Street to Odeon Avenue)
· S. Claiborne Avenue (Napoleon Avenue to Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard)
· S. Carrollton Avenue (Stroelitz Street to I-10)
· Washington Avenue (Short Street to S. Carrollton Avenue)
· Dixon Street (Dublin Street to S. Carrollton Avenue)
So last night I as watched CSI, 11th Hour, and Law and Order (Why are there only crime shows on on Thursday nights?), I started converting the field data into a digital file. I was averaging about 45 minutes a neighborhood, but that’s mostly because I kept changing colors and line weights. Here’s a little screen shot of some of what I was working on last night. All the colors are just working colors. I won’t keep the background purple – it will most likely be white. I think I like the blue, yellow, and red for the lines. The blue stands out well and I think blue is pretty positive color. Yellow fades back a bit, but most of the roads in New Orleans fall into that moderate category, so that works well because it doesn’t need to stand out since you can assume a road will probably be of moderate quality. I want a strong color like red for the poor quality roads because you need to be able to easily see them to know to avoid them. I could use purple…maybe magenta. I want to avoid using red because some people can’t see red, so if you can think of another good color for poor pavement quality roads, I’m open to your input. Blue = good pavement. Yellow = moderate. Red = poor. The fatter lines = wide roads. Dashed lines = fast travel speed of cars.
Once I figure out how I want all the labels to be and such, I’ll upload some of the completed neighborhoods so you can use them right now. I need to double check some of the roads because I’m using the state’s road file, which includes private drives, so this is by no means a final. Also the labels are all over the place – that’ll take forever to correct too. But I love the cyclists of New Orleans, so I’ll make it look extra pretty for you all even if I have to spend an hour a night until June to finish it!
Many of you know that the first NolaCycle map is just going to the East Bank south of I-610 due to time restrictions with graduation in June and having to have something final to turn in. We’re planning on continuing NolaCycle after June so we can map the whole city, West Bank, New Orleans East, and all. To make up for the lack of comprehensive coverage of these areas on NolaCycle Version 1, I would like to include some recommended crosstown routes on a smaller supplemental map on the backside of the main map (or page 2 if you were to download the map online).
I think the best way to do crosstown routes is for community members to submit some of their preferred routes they take to get to school, work, parks, etc. Since the route map is going to smaller, I would like to only include a handful of really helpful routes for people to use. I’d like to input from people on this idea though – how to rate the routes (easy, difficult, fast, slow, high or low traffic, etc.), where should the routes go, how should people submit routes to me, etc. So this is the fun part where you get to tell me what to do! Comment away my crosstown commuting friends!