NEWS

Acadia National Park Transportation Concepts Position


Acadia National Park (ANP) is one of Maine’s BEST places to bicycle, featuring Carriage Paths, the Park Loop Road and many other attractions.

The park is facing some extreme transportation challenges, namely, very large numbers of motor vehicles and buses on roads originally built for fewer and smaller vehicles. Inadequate parking and excessive traffic hinders visitors’ ability to enjoy places like Cadillac Mountain and Sand Beach and create hazards for all users, including cyclists.
As a result, the park is undergoing a major transportation planning project.

After receiving and reviewing extensive public imput in 2015, the ANP staff developed and recently released their “preliminary concepts” for managing increased visitation, traffic, parking, and public safety to ensure a quality visitor experience.  The document contains 5 concepts for the Mount Desert Island portion of the park (including one status-quo) and 2 for the Schoodic area. Two of the MDI proposals also include limiting when bicycilsts can use parts of the park’s paved roads.

The park is to be commended for their public process and it’s essential that all bicyclists participate in this process.

After reviewing the concepts, we have developed the following position:

  • The Bicycle Coalition of Maine is completely opposed to limiting access for bicyclists in the park.  Bicyclists take up very little space and cause minimal wear and tear to the roads. They are carbon free, quiet, don’t cause congestion and are NOT the root cause of the transportation problems in the park.
  • We do encourage limits to the number and size of private and commercial vehicles in the park during peak times.  Reservations are standard for restaurants, hotels and air or bus fares and would be useful in this context.
  • We also support the incentivisation and expansion of the use of the Island Explorer buses to reduce the numbers of private vehicles in the park.
  • We are opposed to two-way traffic on the entire Loop Road.  This will increase danger for bicyclists.

Please show the ANP how important you think bicycling is for the park. Comment via the official website by November 30th.  It’s essential that there is more access and safer cycling in the final plan.

Click here for the official comment website.

Click here for a link to the concepts.

 

2016 Annual Appeal


CLICK HERE TO GIVE THE GIFT OF SAFER BICYCLING

Dear Friend:

What steps do you take to keep yourself safe when riding? Perhaps you’re someone who wears hi-visibility clothing, or always uses hand signals when turning? Maybe you use lights year-round or consistently make eye contact with drivers. These safe riding practices are all tools in each rider’s saddlebag, and along with consistent, legal riding techniques, will keep us all safer. Another one of these tools is a bicycle helmet. While wearing a helmet will not singularly keep you safe, in the event of a crash, it does provide up to an 88% reduction in head and brain injury, and can very well save your life.

We need your help this year-end because not every Maine family can afford to purchase a bicycle helmet for their child. The sad truth is that not every young bike rider can afford the basic equipment that helps keep them safe. We want to ensure that all children who are in need have access to high quality bicycle helmets and proper bicycle safety education, so they can develop a healthy, active lifestyle, and benefit from biking as a lifelong sport and mode of transportation. Your gift this year-end can help make this goal a reality.

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-2-46-06-pmWe pride ourselves on our effective and far-reaching education program. Through this program, we have distributed over 5,000 FREE helmets to children around the state at community events, schools, bike rodeos and health fairs. We have seized opportunities to educate young riders about safe bike driving and to properly fit them with a helmet.

At the beginning of this year, we learned suddenly that the funding for our Helmet Program was no longer available. Historically, we have distributed over 1,600 helmets annually to children in need. This year, we found ourselves without the necessary funds to purchase helmets on the same scale as in previous years. Over the past 10 months alone, we have fielded requests from partners, schools and other organizations for over 1,000 helmets that we cannot fulfill due to lack of funding for the program.

We need your help to revitalize our Helmet Program for 2017.
It costs just $12 to equip a child with a helmet and educate them about how to ride their bicycle safely and legally. Your donation to this program will help protect some of the most vulnerable users of the road, and ensure that children can enjoy riding their bikes with the basic protective gear we take for granted.

During this season of giving, give the gift of safer bicycling. Please make a year-end contribution today and help us reach our goal of $12,000, or 1,000 helmets that will protect the heads of the next generation of bicyclists.

Most sincerely,
Nancy Grant
Executive Director
Bicycle Coalition of Maine

CLICK HERE TO GIVE THE GIFT OF SAFER BICYCLING

 

The Coalition is hiring a Communications Director!


Interviews for qualified candidates will be held exclusively on Monday, November 14th.  Please leave that day open in your calendar so that you will be available.

The Bicycle Coalition of Maine is a statewide, nonprofit membership organization that has been working since 1992 to make Maine better for biking and walking.  Our programs and events collectively promote and expand safe biking and walking in Maine for transportation, health and recreation.

We are seeking an experienced, energetic and effective individual who will lead our organization’s communications, marketing and public relations work.  Our new Communications Director will provide vision and leadership in developing and implementing an organization-wide communication plan and strategies to enhance the Coalition’s visibility, advance our brand, and articulate clear messaging to our members, partners, state leaders, policy makers and beyond.

The Communications Director will integrate and balance four key areas—development, education, advocacy, and events—in the communications of the Coalition.  (S)he will translate our vision, mission and strategic plan for targeted constituents and stakeholders with the goal of developing campaigns that move the public to support our work. The Communications Director will drive communication, marketing and PR strategies and will also manage the production of campaign and program materials, blog posts, email newsletters and calls to action, a bi-annual print magazine, press releases, social media, and website content.

Qualifications:

  • Strong writing, oral communications and public speaking skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills, ability to work with others, including volunteers
  • A collaborative orientation and success working in a variety of teams
  • Experience in and confidence working with a range of technologies, e.g, WordPress, Constant Contact, GSuite, Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite, eTapestry
  • Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously, schedule and meet deadlines
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Self starter
  • Builder of systems and structures that build efficiencies and include stakeholders
  • Knowledge of core programming and policy issues related to our mission and belief that our work makes Maine better.
  • Graphic design capabilities a plus

General Responsibilities:

  • With other staff and board members, develop comprehensive communications, marketing and public relations plan and calendar for the Coalition
  • Lead implementation and regular review of Communications Plan with full engagement of Management and Communications Teams
  • Manage communications calendar including events, print and electronic communications, website, social media, advertising and public relations.
  • Develop and execute campaigns for our development, education, advocacy, and events programs.
  • Proactively cultivate relationships with the media, pitch stories and respond to events
  • Serve as a public face of the organization at speaking engagements and in the media.
  • Coordinate production of bi-annual magazine, Maine Cyclist
  • Manage website content review and updates
  • Prepare and schedule regular posts on the Coalition’s social media outlets
  • Track and measure engagement of posts to inform social media strategy
  • Catalogue and manage photo, video and other digital assets
  • Chair Communications Team (staff)
  • Act as staff liaison of Communications Committee (board and other BCM members, staff).

Some early morning and night meetings and weekends required.  Some statewide travel required. Health and other benefits available.  Salaried, exempt position.

Please send your application materials to jobs@bikemaine.org by Friday, November 4, 2016. These should include:

  • A cover letter
  • Resume
  • List of 3 references, including contact info
  • No more than 3 writing samples.  Writing samples can include a media advisory or press release, social media posts you’ve created for another organization, an article you’ve written, an annual appeal letter, web page content, blog entry, etc.

Interviews for qualified candidates will be held exclusively on Monday, November 14th.  Please leave that day open in your calendar so that you will be available.

 

National Walk to School Day is October 5! Join in the fun!


Hundreds of Maine school children will walk or bike to school with family members, school staff and volunteers in celebration of National Walk to School Day, Wednesday, October 5th. Organized events are planned at schools across the state throughout October, which is National Walk and Bike to School Month, and some schools will continue walking and biking throughout the fall.

The Maine Safe Route to School Program can support your event(s) with event announcement posters, walking school bus posters, and incentive stickers. To request these, please register your event here. Any school that registers their event with us this fall will be entered into a raffle to receive fun safety gear to use as incentives in future walk and bike to school events.

Here are the Maine schools that have been in touch with us about their Walk & Bike to School activities this fall:

  • Auburn, The Walton School – Walk to School Day in October
  • Bangor, The Downeast School – Daily Walking School Bus to school all fall
  • Brunswick, Coffin & Harriet Beecher Stowe Elementary Schools – Monthly Walk & Bike to School Days through the year
  • Easton Elementary School – Walk at School event this fall
  • Ellsworth Elementary Middle School – Daily Walking School Bus all fall
  • Howland, Hitchborn Middle School – 1 Mile Walk/Run the first week in October
  • Kingfield Elementary School – Walk & Bike to School Day in October
  • Lewiston, Farwell Elementary School – National Walk to School Day on Oct. 5
  • Lincoln – Ella P. Burr & Mattanawcook Junior High Schools – Weekly walking school bus to school on Wednesdays Sept-Oct and May-June
  • North Anson, Carrabec Community School – monthly walking school bus to school this fall
  • Norway, Guy E. Rowe Elementary School – Daily Walking School Bus on one route to & from school all fall
  • Old Town Elementary School – twice monthly Walk to School Days this fall
  • Portland, East End Community School – Daily Walking School Bus to school & National Walk to School Day celebration; Lincoln Middle School – Bike and Walk to School Days in Oct & May; Lyseth Elementary School – Footloose Fridays starting Oct 14th; Peaks Island Elementary School – Walking field trips this fall
  • Princeton, Indian Township School – weekly Walk to School days all year
  • Rangeley Lakes Regional School – Walk & Bike to School Day in Oct
  • Scarborough Pleasant Hill School – Walk N Wheel Fridays from Sept. – June
  • Skowhegan, Margaret Chase Smith School – Walking School Bus to school in Oct
  • Solon, Elementary School – Walk to School Days in Oct
  • South Portland, Memorial Middle School – Walk & Bike to School Day Oct. 4
  • Strong Elementary School – Walk to School Days in fall & spring
  • Warren Community School – weekly Walk to School Days on Fridays in fall & spring
  • Waterville – Albert S. Hall School – Daily Walking School Bus all fall

We hope to see you walking or biking to school this fall!

 

Safe Routes to School Newsletter Archive


The Maine Safe Routes to School Program compiles a monthly newsletter to keep you in the know about local success stories, exciting program updates, and funding opportunities. Check out our past newsletters for inspiration, then SIGN UP for our SRTS monthly newsletter to stay in-the-know about the Maine SRTS Program.

 

 

Valet Volunteers Needed! Beach to Beacon 10k Race – Saturday, August 6!


Valet Volunteers Needed! Beach to Beacon 10k Race – Saturday, August 6!

Beach to Beacon is the Bicycle Coalition of Maine’s largest Valet Bike Parking event of the year and is a fantastic opportunity to get folks out of their cars and onto their bikes. Last year we had about 250 users over the course of the day and this year we’re growing the service to accommodate up to 400 bikes! With this amount of growth, the Coalition needs more fantastic volunteers like YOU during the event. Volunteering as a Valet Attendant is fun, easy, and a great way to support the Coalition’s mission of making Maine better for biking and walking.

There are three time options for volunteering – Saturday, August 6 – Fort Williams Park:

1. 5:30am-12:30pm (full event)

2. 5:30am-9:00am (1st half)

3. 9:00am-12:30pm (2nd half)

To sign up for a volunteer shift, leave a comment below or email Bridgette Kelly at bridgette@bikemaine.org. More info on Valet Bike Parking here.

 

Bicycle Coalition of Maine and Maine Police Roll Out New Enforcement Resource and Campaign


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PORTLAND, Maine – The Bicycle Coalition of Maine’s Law Enforcement Collaborative is announcing the distribution of its Law Enforcement Reference Guide, as well as a coordinated bicycle, pedestrian and motorist law enforcement detail dedicated to improving safety for vulnerable users. These efforts com e at that time of year that sees increases in the numbers of vulnerable users on our roadways. In 2015, 276 pedestrians and 182 bicyclists were involved in crashes with motor vehicles, resulting in 19 pedestrian fatalities.

 

The Bicycle Coalition of Maine Law Enforcement Collaborative is a committee made up of law enforcement officers, transportation officials, bicycle commuters, attorneys, and bicycle education experts. The Collaborative meets monthly to discuss the challenges and realities of enforcing laws concerning bicyclists and pedestrians. The committee’s goal is to identify strategies to promote roadway safety for vulnerable users through education and enforcement.

 

The Law Enforcement Reference Guide was developed by the Law Enforcement Collaborative to provide officers on patrol with a convenient reference to the priority violations and pertinent laws that regulate the behavior of motorists and bicyclists. The double-sided resource, endorsed by the Maine Sheriff’s Association, and the Maine Association of Police, lists violations for bicyclists on one side, and violations for motorists on the other.

 

In conjunction with the release of this new resource, a number of Greater Portland police departments, including Portland, South Portland, Yarmouth, Scarborough and the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office will be conducting traffic enforcement details emphasizing the safety of vulnerable users. On June 15, these police agencies will be on patrol and paying particular attention to behaviors that put walkers, bicyclists and other more vulnerable persons at risk on our roadways. These efforts are intended to raise awareness and to gain voluntary compliance to the rules of the road, enhancing safety and reducing crashes, injuries and fatalities.

 

For more information or to schedule a possible ride along during this enforcement effort, please contact:

 

  • Bicycle Coalition of Maine: Jim Tasse – 207.623.4511
  • Cumberland County SO: Det. Stephen Gorham – 207.774.1444 ext. 2171
  • Portland PD: Sgt. Michael Rand – 207.874.8554
  • Scarborough PD: Sgt. John O’Malley – 207.730.4306
  • South Portland PD: Lt. Frank Clark – 207.799.5511 ext. 7242
  • Yarmouth PD: Lt. Dean Perry – 207.846-3333