Research Rest-Stop | Is the Bike Backlash Old News?

Every Wednesday, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU) highlights some interesting research related to or highlights innovations in transportation, sustainability or energy.

This week are lucky to have the New York Press review Peter Norton’s book,  Fighting Traffic, the story of what happened when cars first appeared on American roads and the uproar they caused. Norton reminds us that there was a time when mobs of New York residents would threaten automobile drivers.  As the review notes

Norton argues that the great Automobile Backlash of the 1920s wasn’t so much a fight between different modes of transportation, it was a turf war over New Yorkers’ shared public space: the street. The sudden arrival of large numbers of private automobiles in the 1920s forced New Yorkers to face new questions about who the streets were for and how they were to be shared and used. Today, the sudden arrival of a rapidly growing number of bicycles is forcing New York City to face these questions once again.

When lawsuits now threaten bike-lanes and newspaper columnists wage war on bicyclists, it’s worth noting, we have been here before.

MOTUnes Monday | In the Aeroplane Over the Sea

 

Every Monday, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU) brings you MOTUnes Monday, a selection of some of our favorite transportation related songs.  Today we are happy to take off with a song by the band Neutral Milk Hotel; In the Aeroplane Over the Sea

Research Rest-Stop | What Causes Traffic Gridlock?

Every Wednesday, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU) highlights some interesting research related to or highlights innovations in transportation, sustainability or energy. This week we highlight some research by Boris Kerner of the Daimler Automotive Group in Germany who explains the physics of traffic gridlock in a city.  What Kerner shows is that the choice of a single driver, whether or not to enter an intersection at a given point, has a huge impact on how traffic flows regardless of how heavy it is.

MOTUnes Monday | When the Ship Comes In

Every Monday, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU) brings you MOTUnes Monday, a selection of some of our favorite transportation related songs.  Today we are listening dock side to the Pogues’ When the Ship Comes In.

Research Rest-Stop | Bike your way to a better economy.

Every Wednesday, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU) highlights some interesting research related to or highlights innovations in transportation, sustainability or energy.  Today we look at research out of Copenhagen, Denmark where nearly 50% of its residents’ bike.  According to Copenhagen’s own city council, the bike industry generates over 1 billion kroner in economic activity a year, supporting over 600 jobs.  In other words, pushing pedals pushes dollars.

MOTUnes Monday | Last train to Clarksville

Every Monday, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU) brings you MOTUnes Monday, a selection of some of our favorite transportation related songs.  Today we are riding on the Last Train to Clarksville, that classic by the Monkees released in 1966.

Philadelphia’s Adopt-A-Rack Program Hitting the Streets

In case you didn’t know, Philadelphia has the highest percentage residents that report bicycling to work (2.16%) of any of the top ten cities in the US.  Don’t believe me?  Stand on the corner of 13th and Spruce during the morning rush.  We know tens of thousands of more trips are taken each week to get around town or for recreation.  Over the past year, the City working with the Philadelphia Parking Authority has converted nearly 1,000 old Center City parking meters into bike racks, and hundreds more will be installed this fall in University City.  Outside of Center City and University City it is getting increasingly difficult to find a bike parking in neighborhoods from South Philly to Northern Liberties to West Philly to Manayunk.  When the few bike racks are full, bike’s are being locked to bike racks, stop signs and even trees (a big no-no) all across the City.  This incredible growth in bicycling (up 150% from 2000) is set to continue.

Cyclists need somewhere to park. Those who prefer two feet or four wheels to a bike, don’t want bikes blocking the sidewalk or damaging trees.  The Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (MOTU), the Streets Department and the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability have partnered to install 400 new adopt-a-rack bike racks across the City.  Three years ago, the original adopt-a-rack program installed 1,200 racks in front of buildings, businesses and institutions that promised to care for the racks.  In 2010, MOTU did a call for new adopt-a-rack locations and more than 400 racks are set to be installed.  The City is currently looking for a qualified contractor to procure and install the racks.   For businesses interested in bidding on this public works project, please see the following:

Project Name: Adopt-A-Rack

Bid Number:  #3732

Estimated cost: $100,000-$200,000

How to apply submit a bid:   Paper proposals must be picked-up from Rm 170A, MSB building.  Proposals are due by 9/22/2011.

For questions about submitting a bid or for more information, please contact the Procurement Office at call 215-686-4720, 4755 or 4756.

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