Start locally

31203546141_04b37a7358_oIn my Pedal Power communications materials (Pedal Power Hour lunch-and-learn presentation, one-on-one coaching, and a book coming soon), there is a visual about what to do after riding. The final point is “community care.” That point includes advocating for safe access for all locally, state-wide, and nationally. Here is what I wrote today to my local leaders. Perhaps you want to write to your city hall as well about the issues that matter most to you.

Dear City Leaders:

I am writing in support of a complete network of family-friendly infrastructure for those ages 8-80 such as multi-use paths, separated/protected bike lanes, and priority crossings for vulnerable users of our public space. With diligent adherence to this goal, I believe the City of Dunwoody could become the most family-friendly city for bike riders through all stages of life in the north metro Atlanta area, and could further position itself for ease of access to our region and the City of Atlanta’s ever-growing connection of trails and protected lanes. As a shared city with Sandy Springs in the claim to being the home of the largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the southeastern USA, our commitment to providing forward-thinking safe-access-for-all and the possibility of reducing auto use for a more active lifestyle serves as an invitation to highly-educated Millenials to consider relocating here.

I currently ride my bike often in the City of Dunwoody (exclusively with a 3-foot pool noodle sticking out from the side for the past 12 weeks so that drivers no longer almost hit me when they attempt to pass illegally, as was common beforehand) and I am not surprised that I hardly ever see a child, other woman, or senior riding a bike as transportation since our safe network is not yet completed and will not maximize its potential until it is. I look forward to the day I see parents with cargo bikes (you see this all over the City of Atlanta), kids on their own bikes (the bike-to-school rate in our city is less than 1%), and seniors on casual upright bikes and trikes (which is a growing trend nationwide) safely traversing our city. In addition to proven safe infrastructure, the City may want to consider providing consistent and dependable bike parking. This keeps a quality brand image throughout the city, and it also encourages local shopping with taxable sales benefiting our economic bottom line. Bike riders shop locally more, and more often, than those who don’t ride bikes. Bike racks let all who work, live, and play in our city know that we are open for their business.

I appreciate that I have been asked to participate in city hall meetings regarding the update of our master transportation plan. I believe the City of Dunwoody is poised at the crossroads of connection, and it is my sincere hope that we embrace this unique opportunity to benefit our citizens today and for generations to come.

Thank you for all you do. It matters.

Learning as I grow,
Pattie Baker

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