Boston’s Mayor Rides – Does Charleston’s Mayor Riley too?Posted: August 10, 2009
Ok so this post isn’t exactly about Cycle Chic in the ‘chic’ sense, but it IS about something near and dear to my heart (and the underlying motivation of Charleston Cycle Chic) – making a city more bike-friendly. This past weekend, the NY Times wrote an excellent article on how Boston, long known as a ‘cyclists’ minefield’, is turning itself around and implementing measures to become more bike-friendly. Now Boston was established much the same time Charleston was. It has historic buildings, narrow streets and is surrounded by water and bridges. It also has a history of moving a bit slowly to get things done. But not anymore. In fact, Bicycling Magazine recently cited it on it’s Five for the Future list.
What does it take to make a city bike-friendly? As I experienced so clearly on my recent trip to Boulder, CO – it’s about creating bike lanes that go from Important Point A to Important Point B. It’s about having bike racks everywhere (here’s a link to ours). It’s about businesses encouraging bike parking (like Charleston’s Downtown TacoBoy!), and educating drivers about what it means to share the roads.
But it’s also about having leadership that loves to ride. Boston’s Mayor Menino recently discovered the biking lifestyle and realized just how important it is to a city’s sustainability and enjoyment and so quickly got to work. He even started Hub on Wheels, a Citywide Ride and Festival.
So I get it. As much grassroots moving as we can do, it still has to come from the top. So Mayor Riley – here’s what I propose to you. Come ride with me around our beautiful city. If you don’t have a bicycle, I’ll buy one for you. That’s my commitment to you, to this city, and to this lifestyle. Try it! It just might change your life.