Here is Velo Paso’s continuing coverage of Carlos and his support team on their ride to Austin:
And more information and photos can be found at https://www.facebook.com/pedalingforjustice
Oct 29: More News Coverage
News Coverage: http://www.texastribune.org/2013/10/29/are-some-immigration-activists-hurting-cause/
Oct 28: And they’re off (photos by Luis Bustamante)
News Coverage: http://www.kint.com/2013/10/27/carlos-se-encomienda-a-dios-para-pedalear-este-lunes/
News Coverage: http://www.kint.com/2013/10/28/carlos-gutierrez-pedaleando-por-la-justicia/
Oct 27: The Pedaling for Justice Ride to Austin Kicks Off Tomorrow Morning at Lincoln Park
During today’s mass at St Pius X, Father Bañuelas and his parish blessed Carlos Gutierrez and the bicycle he will be using to complete his 700-mile journey to Austin.
Tomorrow morning at 9 am, Carlos and the Pedaling for Justice team will depart from Lincoln Park on 4116 Durazno Ave.
Please stop by if you would like to see us off or share your support via the Pedaling for Justice Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/pedalingforjustice
And, of course, bring you bicycle if you would like to ride us out of El Paso!
Please call Bennett Foster with any questions at 323-385-5836.
What: Pedaling for Justice Ride: http://pedalingforjustice.org/
When: Monday, October 28 at 9 am
Where: Lincoln Park, 4116 Durazno Ave.
Oct 25: Please join Velo Paso as we support his ride to AustinAs part of his therapy and in an effort to raise awareness about impunity and corruption in Mexico, Carlos will ride his bike more than 670 miles from El Paso, Texas, to Austin the state’s capital. Carlos, a member of the El Paso-based nonprofit group “Mexicans in Exile” is calling his campaign “Pedaling for Justice” and he is focused on creating something positive out of his terrible experience. Right now Carlos is training intensively, and he needs your help and support for this challenging campaign to raise awareness about corruption and impunity in his homeland and Mexico’s dire need to institute a Rule of Law so that families like his are not forced to flee for their lives. To accomplish his goals, Carlos needs funding and resources for transportation and housing for his support crew on the 10-day long journey. He also needs funding for a press conference and event to be held in Austin when he finishes his journey. Help Carlos heal and raise awareness about a growing problem with violence and impunity in his homeland.
El Paso, TEXAS – Seven El Pasoans have earned the prestigious certification of League Cycling Instructor (LCI) from the League of American Bicyclists, a 135-year-old national bicycling organization based in Washington DC. The new LCIs are: Victor Cordero, Bennett Foster, Juan Pablo Hernandez, Jorge Lopez, Melissa Lugo, Sarah Rich, and Scott White.
El Paso’s first cadre of LCIs have completed in-depth training on teaching skills for cycling in traffic, on trails and with groups of riders,” said Preston Tyree, LCI Coach, and former education director for the League of American Bicyclists. “El Paso LCIs now have access to a nationwide network of more than 4,000 instructors as well as educational tools and resources approved by the League.”
The League Cycling Instructor designation is only awarded after a person qualifies for, and excels in, an intense three-day training seminar. LCIs are qualified to teach bicycle safety and cycling skills to riders of all levels. LCIs are most commonly retained for bicycle education and safety programs, and are routinely requested to advise communities on issues of bicycle safety, education and planning.
“Las Cruces, with a population one-tenth the size of El Paso, has six LCIs, while Austin has over 30 LCIs,” said Scott White, policy director for Velo Paso. “El Paso went from zero to seven LCIs primarily because Velo Paso and our partners saw this as a critical need that will serve as a first step toward making our city a safer place to ride a bicycle.”
Crazy Cat Cyclery and the Bicycle Company provided generous support by funding several Safety Education Scholarships, while the Pizza Joint provided lunch and dinners for the LCI Seminar participants.
LCIs are the backbone of the League’s education program,” said Andy Clarke, Executive Director of the League of American Bicyclists. “LCIs have demonstrated a proficiency in teaching, a love of cycling, and a willingness to share these skills with other riders.”
For additional information on El Paso’s seven new LCIs, Velo Paso will be posting a series of profiles here and our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/velopaso.
About the League: The League of American Bicyclists promotes bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation, and works through advocacy and education for a Bicycle Friendly America. The League represents the interests of America’s 57 million bicyclists, including its 300,000 members and affiliates. For more information or to support the League, visit www.bikeleague.org
About Velo Paso: The mission of Velo Paso Bicycle-Pedestrian Coalition is to make bicycling and walking safe and accessible for everyone in the Paso del Norte region through education and outreach. To learn more, please visit www.velopaso.org
Last Saturday, September 21, a pedestrian was hit and killed on the 2900 block of N. Mesa, near Miner Village. This is the second pedestrian fatality on Mesa, and the third death on a Texas Department of Transportation right-of-way, in two months.
We can heap blame on the motorists and pedestrians involved in these crashes, or we can question the transportation culture, perpetuated by TxDOT, which creates the unsafe and inadequate infrastructure that eventually leads to these fatal outcomes.
These crashes should push us to examine how our poor pedestrian infrastructure increases the risk of accidents and deaths on our roads.
TxDOT District Engineer Bob Bielek recently said in an interview that “car is still king” in El Paso. He neglected to mention that it was TxDOT that crowned it. Without walkable streets, convenient access to services and amenities, or decent bicycle infrastructure, of course people are going to make every trip by car.
In the rest of the country–in the rest of Texas–this car culture is dying. Other communities are building healthier and safer infrastructure that encourages cycling and walking. But TxDOT, which funds roughly 80% of all transportation projects in El Paso, continues to embrace an outdated notion at the expense of the health, safety and vitality of our community.
KINT 26 Univision “Avenida Mesa: Peligrosa para peatones”
KINT 26 Univision “Avenida Mesa: Peligrosa para peatones”
It is time to turn this deadly situation around. We can begin by asking TxDOT what design aspects have been, or are in the process of being, implemented to address pedestrian safety and accessibility on their roads, specifically on Mesa, a commercial corridor populated by UTEP students and that gets heavy foot traffic.
Next, we should pose the question to ourselves. Why should we care about being able to access Mesa by foot, bike, or bus?
Aside from the obvious safety concerns, walkable neighborhoods generally have higher commercial and residential property values. According to WalkScore.com, an international measure used by consumers and the real estate industry to rate walkability on a scale of 0 to 100, “a 10 point increase in [a neighborhood’s] Walk Score increases commercial property values by 5-8%; each point is worth up to $3,000 in a typical metro area.”
With a Walk Score of 69, compared to an average score of 38 for the entire city, Mesa has the dubious distinction of being El Paso’s most walkable street as well as its most dangerous. While property owners and local businesses may see the value and desirability of having a functional Mesa that accommodates all modes of transportation, TxDOT narrowly categorizes Mesa as a highway reliever route in the event that I-10 closes.
This designation precludes TxDOT from requesting and implementing projects that would improve pedestrian access – like crosswalks, stop lights, and bike lanes – at the expense of impeding the flow of traffic. Traffic flow is an important concern, but the completion of Loop 375 will allow TxDOT to divert fast-moving traffic away from one of our most walkable streets. As a community, we need to demand that completion of the Loop positively affect Mesa’s functionality, placing less emphasis on highway relief and more on accessibility for all modes of transportation.
Ultimately this comes down to vision. TxDOT’s vision for El Paso determines the city’s infrastructure for decades to come. If TxDOT intends to foster a culture where car is king, then it should do absolutely nothing and continue to allow pedestrians and cyclists to die preventable deaths on El Paso’s roads.
If TxDOT wants to help El Paso catch up with the rest of the state and the country, improve the city’s health and safety, and give El Pasoans the freedom to walk or bike around their city, then the agency needs to take concrete and effective steps to change our infrastructure.
by Angie Schmitt
Just a few weeks ago, El Paso was all ready to go with a new bike-share network, or so it seemed. The city had lined up $400,000 in local funds from the city of El Paso, the University of Texas at El Paso and a grant from Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. The regional planning agency had unanimously signed off on awarding the project $1.6 million in federal transportation funds earmarked for air pollution reduction. Suburban communities had even started expressing interest in being added to the system.
PARK Day is coming!
Friday, September 20, 2013 is PARK Day, an annual worldwide event where artists, designers and citizens transform metered parking spots into temporary public parks. Come be a part of the fun here in El Paso, downtown near Foodville. Walk, ride, and enjoy the fun!
For more information visit the City of El Paso’s Sustainability page, or PARK DAY
El Paso, TEXAS – Concerned citizens from across the City of El Paso will gather tonight for a bicycle ride to remember Floyd Trey Hancock, 47, Terence Patrick Harvey, 57, and Jose Cordova, a 9-year-old who was fatally crushed by an SUV while riding his bicycle in Central El Paso last week.
The memorial ride, led by Critical Mass El Paso, a local bicycle group that meets the last Friday of every month, will begin at Union Plaza Park at 7 p.m. and end at the intersection of Raynor and Jefferson, the site of the crash involving Cordova.
Cemelli De Aztlan, ordained with the First Nations Ministry and the Director of Religious Education at the Unitarian Universalist Community of El Paso, will lead the vigil in prayer and Velo Paso Bicycle-Pedestrian Coalition will install a Ghost Bike, a universally recognized road side memorial placed at a crash to commemorate someone who was killed while riding a bicycle.
“Memorial rides are a way to remember the fallen, raise community awareness of the need for safety and education, and create something positive out of a tragic situation,” said Preston Tyree, former Education Director of the League of American Bicyclists.
Velo Paso is scheduling a weeklong series of bicycle safety events with bicyclist safety expert Tyree and the League of American Bicyclists, the country’s largest and oldest bicycle advocacy organization, at the beginning of October.
“Bicycle safety is a community issue,” said Tyree. “We all need to work together to make the roads safer for all users.”
In order to gain a greater understanding the circumstances and conditions leading to these deaths, Tyree, a respected expert witness on bicycle crashes, has asked Velo Paso to provide him with copies of the police reports for the fatal crashes that occurred in the last two weeks.
WHAT: Critical Mass El Paso Memorial Ride
WHERE: Start at Union Plaza at 7 p.m.; End at Raynor and Jefferson
Victor Barajas 915-227-3353
Amanda Formica 617-640-0628
ABOUT BICYCLE CRASHES IN EL PASO, between January 2009 and July 2013:An average of 86 accidents occur annually. There have been 39 crashes reported so far in 2013. Crashes are most prevalent between April and June (37.3%) and on weekdays (79.6%) and during the afternoon peak period from 3:00 – 6:00 pm (28.9%) and 6:00 – 9:00 pm (21.6%). Mesa, Alameda, Montana, Dyer and Edgemere not only have the highest number of accidents, but they are cited as a primary or secondary intersection in over one-quarter of crash reports.
ABOUT VELO PASO: The mission of Velo Paso Bicycle-Pedestrian Coalition is to make bicycling and walking safe and accessible for everyone in the Paso del Norte region through education and outreach.
Juliana Henao, El Diario de El Paso
A la luz de las recientes tragedias que involucran a tres ciclistas y dos peatones, incluyendo la muerte del pequeño José Córdova, de 9 años de edad, mientras montaba su bicicleta en el Centro de El Paso, preocupados por sus vidas integrantes de la Coalición de Ciclistas y Peatones Velo Paso se reunieron con oficiales de Gobierno ayer sábado.
The same state department of transportation that is eagerly pursuing a $5.2 billion third outerbelt for Houston yanked $1.6 million from the city of El Paso this week out of concern that the city’s bike-share plans were not “the most efficient ways to address air quality with limited funding.”
According to the El Paso Times, the city’s Camino Real Regional Mobility Authority was preparing to move forward with bike-share after securing some $400,000 in local funds, including funds from City of El Paso and the University of Texas at El Paso.
But officials from the Texas Department of Transportation indicated this week they were withholding the $1.6 federal match. “TxDOT plans to coordinate conversations with transportation partners to garner more information on how we can dedicate those limited funds to important congestion-mitigation projects around the state,” TxDOT said in a memo said, according to the Times.
The Texas Department of Transportation slammed the brakes on a bicycle-sharing program for Downtown and Central El Paso by denying $1.6 million in federal funding, at least for now.
During its monthly board meeting on Wednesday, the Camino Real Regional Mobility Authority was prepared to move forward with the BikeShare Program, which the City of El Paso and the University of Texas at El Paso had already approved partial funding for. But the plans changed when Raymond Telles, the authority’s executive director, said Mark Williams, TxDOT’s director of planning, told him earlier this week that TxDOT was not in agreement with the use of the $1.6 million.
The money was going to come fromthe Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Program and the Surface Transportation Planning/Metropolitan Mobility program run by TxDOT.
“As far as I’ve been told the decision is final,” Telles said.
But in a prepared statement, TxDOT said the decision is not final.
Read Full Article HERE
Do you want to make El Paso safe for cyclists and pedestrians?
Do you wish it was easier to take your mom and your children out for a bike ride or walk around El Paso?
Do you wish you could live here without needing a car?
Are you angry that TxDOT is trying to deny El Paso funding for our bike share program, even after city council approved it?
Come to the first Velo Paso-bike pedestrian coalition Community Meeting and share how you feel!
When: Saturday 8/24 10am-12pmWhere: ELP Public Library, downtown branch
Bring your ideas about how we can create an El Paso where it’s easy and fun to bike and walk for everyone!
Breakfast will be provided! (Think pan dulce and coffee)
Copyright © 2020 Velo Paso Bicycle-Pedestrian Coalition.
A 501©(3) nonprofit organization.