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Newsletter of the Bicycle Coalition of the Delaware Valley

In Support of Bike-on-Rail, Sen. Fumo Scolds PATCO Chief


The Pennsylvania state senator sharply rebuked a rail official for
making false allegations about bike-on-rail. By the end of the meeting,
the oflcial had agreed to come up with a triulplan by mid-June.

Pa. State Sen. Vincent Fumo of

South
has been
an ardent supporter of a bikeon-rail program for the
PATCO High Speed Line.

Pennsylvania State Sen.


Fumo, armed with infor- trains during off-peak
Vincent Fumo "erapted at a mation supplied by the Bi- hours.. .Schwab said allowDelaware RiverPortAuthor- cycle Coalition, sharply re- ing bicycles would require
ity (DRPA) meeting in April buked the rail official for removing seats, which
when the head of the making erroneous allegations 'meansthat some people who
authority's rail line attacked about the nature of bike-on- ride on a regular basis would
be inconvenienced for the
a Coalition-sponsored bike- rail at the meeting.
on-rail program.
According to the Phila- occasional passenger who
The official had begun to delphia Inquirer:
brings a bike.'
"'No it doesn't meanthat,'
list reasons that he opposed
"Fumo erupted as Bob
bicycles on the Port Author- Schwab, general manager of Fumo interjected. 'Let's not
ityTransit Co. (PATC0)High PATCO, outlined his reasons take
the
negative
for opposing bicycles on approach.. .let's not scare the
Speed Line.
public that the other passengers are going to be without
seats.. .this is a service industry, and if we don't start providing service, ridership will
go down and we '11be in worse
mobiles while allowing 100 drive sometime this summer shape. ,,.
percent access to the drive's if the Coalition can get the
By the end of the meeting,
support and cooperation of
Schwab
had agreed to come
Mayor Edward Rendell.
up with a plan for a trial proThe plan would
permining limited ac- gram by the middle of June.
cessfrom Montgomely Drive he plan, w ~ c the
S ~ t U70 percent of
h Bicycle
three large parking lots in Coalition has reviewed and
the drive to cars
the
portion of the contributed to, has operating
while allo~ing
and
hours and access levels simiaccess to all
MansiOnBridgeto
small I,, to that S E m x s ~ i k ~ - o n parking lots at the drive's Rail program.
parking lots.
lower end, the Coalition plan
addresses complaints about
Coalitionleaders hope the
lack of community access to trial program will begin before the end of the summer,
five parking lots. It should the river.
capping a successfultwo-year
permit all-day closings of the
fConirnued On
BCDV lobbying campaign.

Coalition Modifies River Drive Closing Plan


TO Address Councilman's Parking Concerns
The Bicycle Coalition has
modifieditsWestRiverDrive
closing proposal to allow cars
to reach riverside parking lots
while keeping the bulk of the
drive auto-free.
The proposal has won the
support of City Councilman
Michael Nutter, who had opposed aprevious planbecause
it blocked auto access to parkinglots. Councilwoman Joan
Specter has also expressed
support.
The plan would shut 70
percent of the drive to auto-

Cyclegram, JulyIAugust 1992 p.2

Upcoming Events
Monthly Meetings:
General membership
meetings are held the second Monday of each oddnumbered month from 6:30
to 8:30 p.m. at Clean Water
Action, 15 18 Walnut Street
in Center City.
Take the elevator to the
13th floor, with your bicycle, if you prefer.
The next general membership meeting is July 13.
Coalition board meetings are the second Monday
of even-numbered months
and focus on internal business. Thepublic is welcome.

Ride Calendar

The next board meeting


is Aug. 10.

(The Delaware ValleyRegional Ride Calendar is a


regularfearureof Cyclegram.
Listings should be senr ro Bicycle Coalition,attn D VRRC.)

Cyclegram Deadline:
Deadline for the September/October Cyclegram
is July 27. Deadlines are the
last Monday of odd-numbered months.
Mailing Party:
Mailing parties are
scheduled for Wednesday,
July 29 and Wednesday,
Aug. 26 at 6 p.m. at Jeff
Abrahamson's, 44 11 Pine
St. Call 215-BICYCLE or
215-662-5 146 for more information.
1

Bicycle Coalition Board Elected


Members
of
the
Coalition's Board of Managers were elected at ameeting
May 11.
The members are John
Dowlin, Nancy Drye, Bob

Noland, Sam Spofforth,Fred


Ulmer, Rob Waterland and
Noel Weyrich.
They had unanimous support from Coalitionmembers
at the meeting.

Cyclegram is published bimonthly by the Bicycle Coalition of the


Delaware Valley, P.O. Box 8 194,Philadelphia, PA 19101. The Coalition
is a volunteer, non-profitorganization working to improve conditions f o ~
bicycling throughout the tri-stale area, promoting bicycling for transportation and recreation, and dedicated to a balanced transportation system
Coverage of an event not sponsored by BCDV does not constitute ar
endorsement.Cyclegrammay be reproduced in whole or in part providec
prominent credit is given to the Bicycle Coalition of theDelawareValley
Cyclegram is printed on recycled paper using soy ink.
Board of Managers: John Dowlin, Nancy Drye, Bob Noland. Sam
Spofforth, Fred Ulrner, Rob Waterland and Noel Weyrich (ex officio).
Executive Director: Jeff Abrahamson (2151662-5146)
President: Noel Weyrich (2151232-7543)
Vice President: Fred Ulrner (2151527-6287)
Secretary: Rob Waterland (215/854-8137)
Treasurer: Nancy Drye (2 151387-9242)
Editor: Bill Shralow (2151627-1566)
Membership Director: Bob Noland (2151483-6547)
Committees:

Auto-free: Jeff Abrahamson (2151662-1712)


Bike Lanes: Noel Weyrich (2151232-7543)
Rail and Transit: Noel Weyrich (2151232-7543)
Traffic Safety: Bob Noland (2151483-6547)
BCDV is affiliated with the League of American Wheelmen.

Sat., July4 500-mile ride


from Boston,Mass.,to Washington. D.C. Sponsored by
City Cyclist of New York,
7 18-624-0346.
Sun., July 5: Delaware
Double Cross, Augustine
Beach, Del. 28 miles to cross
the state twice. White Clay
Bicycle Club, 302-995-6860.
Sun., July 19: South Jersey Sizzler Bicycle Tour, 25,
50,62 and 100 miles. Carmel,
N.J. Temple Beth Hillel, 609451-5104.
Sat., Aug. 1: Tours of 10,
25, 50 and 100 miles. Rider
College, Princeton, N.J.
Princeton Freewheelers, 609393- 1206 or 908-828-3535.
Fri.-Sun., Aug. 7-10:
The Great Eastern Rally of
the League of American
Wheelmen, Canton, N.Y.
Tours of five to 100 miles.

Call 3 15-379-5659.
Sat., Aug. 8: Tour of
Monmouth, N.J. PMK Cycling, 908-43 1-2832.
Sat., Aug. 15: Dog Daze
Century, Nottingham, Pa.
Tours of 25,50, 65 and 100
miles. Brandywine Bicycle
Club, 215-793-2341.
Sat. & Sun., Aug. 15 &
16: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation 150K. Montgomery
County. 215-238-8500.
Sat., Sept. 12: Beast of
the East Metric and Double
Century, Burlington County,
N.J. 62 or 125 miles. Outdoor
Club of South Jersey, 609235-2457.
Sun., Sept. 13: 3rd Annual NYC Century Ride-aThon, Union Square Park,
N.Y. Tours of 35,55,75 and
100 miles. Transportation Alternatives, 2 12-941-4600.
Sat. & Sun., Sept. 19 &
20: Multiple Sclerosis 150
City to Shore Bike Tour,
Cherry Hill, N.J. Delaware
Valley Multiple Sclerosis Society, 800-445-2453.

As Bottle Bill Gains Momentum,


Hope is for Less Glass on Roads
Support is growing for a
national "bottle bill" requiring a deposit on all beverage
containers. Proponents believe the measure would help
rid roadways of the broken
glass that plagues cyclists.
Recently, Congressman
Lucien Blackwell, a Philadelphia Democrat, added his
name to the list of co-sponsors of House Resolution
4343. The bottle bill is likely
tobe debated in Congress this
year.
Proponents believe a
bottle bill would lead to increased recyclingby enabling

consumers, youths and the


poor to cash in on discarded
bottles and cans.
Blackwell was applauded
for his support by representatives of the Bicycle Coalition, the Sierra Club,
Pennsylvania's arm of Public
Interest Research Group
(PennPIRG) and Philadelphians for Recycling.
In addition, Pennsylvania
is oneofninestates withbottle
bills pending in their legislatures.
Each year, Americans discard an estimated 60 billion
beverage containers.

Book Review...

An Author's Compelling Call


For New Ways to Get Around
End of the Road, by
Wolfgang Zuckennann. Published in 1991 by Chelsea
Green Publishing Co., Post
Mills,Vt. Forewordby Lester
Brown.

Zuckermann then lists


and describes myriad problems cars have brought us,
from a psychological loss of
connectedness with the
earth's landscape to pollution and urban decay. He
skillfully include& just
by Alan Streater
enough data to make his
This is a great book, ofpoints, supported by exfering a look at the transporamples that make the text
tation woes in many parts of
quite readable.
the world today and concenThis readability is imtrating on problems stemportant
in a book that is tellming from the dominance of
ing
society
something it
the automobile.
doesn't want to hear-it
Such a book is sorely
cushions the pa* of conneeded.
fronting the truth.
a bit
Pan 2 ofEnd of the Road
at times, perhaps that helps
explores
solutions.
make the
more pal- 'Zuckemm's
is
atable to the reader who
three-fold: short-term
drives a car and
might measures we should start
recoil at being called a polnow, medium
luter, a murderer
range solutions
Examining
and a long-tenn
and an inconsiderate slob.
our absurd
plan. Generally,
Zuckermm*
love of the
the suggestions
a German-born
Parisian who
automobile,
target,
are right
though
On
does research for
the author
there is more
the non-profit asks, "Do you
room
for
have 'touches argument over
i n s t i t u t e
of home'
solutions than
E c o P l a n ,
there was over
(stuffed
organizes the
whether
a
book into two
animals, etc.) problem exists.
pans: the first. an in your car?"
Readability
examination of
again helps
the world car
Zuckermann's
crisis and then a discussion
cause. He lays out many opof how to solve it.
tions and, as with a horoHe starts with our absurd
(Continued on p. 4 )
love of the automobile and
invites the reader to take a
Coalition member Alan
short test with questions like,
StreaterofBethlehem
teaches
"DO you have a license plate
Physics
at
Lehigh
University
spelling out your name or a
message?" and "DO you have and keeps tabs on new books
'touches of home' (stuffed dealing with transportation
issues.
animals, etc.) in your car?"

Cyclegram,JulylAugust 1992 p.3

..

Letter from the President.

Hostile Agencies Need a Push


Before They'll Heed Cyclists
offended by-the contribution of others?"
It had been a rough week
And this is the tragedy of
cycling advocacy9 and I the people controlling the
heard myself
agencies that
repeating like a
routinely opmantra, "They
press Delaware
just
don't
Valley cyclists.
understand."
A bike- friendly
PennDOT
PennDOT
refuses
to
would be a betunderstand why
ter PennDOT.
cyclists even
The same for
want to ride on
Fainnount Park
city
and
and PATCO.
suburban
But lack of huhighways.
mility blinds
PATCO refuses to these bureaucrats to the conunderstand that letting tributions we offer. Their
cyclists aboard won't destroy pride leaves them like the protheir transit system. The verbial man with a hammer
Fairmount Park staff refuses who treated every problem
to understand why we don't like a nail.
give UP trying to close West
Eventually, of course,
River Drive-even after one those who privately lack huof us is killed there!
mility wind up being pubI asked myself, what is licly humiliated. PennDOT
this thing, understanding,that ignored us and we disrupted
they refuse to do? The dictio- their Walnut Street Bridge
nary was little help. "Under- ribbon-cutting in 1990.
stand," it said, is Old English PATCO's general manager
for "stand under."
rejected our bike-on-rail proAnd then it hit me. In their posal and got dressed down
limited realms of authority, for it (see page 1). Fairmount
these bureaucrats exercise Park's retreat on river drive
enormous power to "stand closures has generated conover" the rest of us. They siderable negative press covrefuse to understand because erage for the park.
they are too proud to "stand
Humility, it turns out,
under" down here with the shares the same root as hurest of us, if only for the pur- mus, as in being of the earth,
pose of discussion. It might being grounded.
For me, the lesson is
take too much humility to (lite r a l l ~orfigurativel~)pedal a simple. If these agencies do
mile in our toeclips.
not come down to our level,
A great educator once said we will bring them down.
there is no dialogue without Humilityorhumiliation--the
humility. "How can I dia- choice is theirs. Experience
logue," wrote Paulo Friere, shows this is the only lan"if I am closed to-and even guage they truly understand.
by Noel Weyrich

Cyclegram,JulylAugust 1992 p.4

Bicyclists Are Calling Hotline Coalition Modifies Drive Plan;


To Report Harassment, Injury Gains Support on City Council
The Bicycle Coalition
Hate Crimes Hotline has
drawn a number of calls
from injured or harassed
cyclists:
A cyclist who was cut
off and bumped by a car in
Center City. The motorist
was verbally abusivebefore
driving off. The Coalition
advised the cyclist of legal
options.
A cyclist was struck
and injured on a two-way
street in NorthPhiladelphia
when a car making a left
turn from the opposite lane
pulled into his path. He was
given the number of a personal injury lawyer who
works on cycling issues.
A cyclist reported numerous incidents of verbal
harassment
on
the
Faitmount Parkriverdrives,
an issue we will raise in our
campaign to make the drives

bicycle-safe.
Other calls have reflected chronic cycling
problems: SEPTA bus drivers, opening car doors and
threatening maneuvers by
drivers.
If you are involved~hile
cycling in any incident involving inappropriate behavior by a motorist, dial
(2 15) BICYCLE with the
following information: License plate tag number if
you have it, time and street
intersection of incident, description of incident, and
your name and number.
The Coalition intends to
compile reports of such incidents to help in lobbying
for stricter legal protection
for cyclists.
Polls show that fear of
automotive traffic is the top
reason most people give for
not cyclingmore frequently.

US. Money for Bicycle Projects


Threatened by Planners' Delay
Stalling by regional planners threatens to squander
millions of first-time dollars
available for bicycle projects.
Although last year's federal transportationlaw makes
the money available, area bicycle and pedestrian projects
like bike paths could lose out
to less bicycle-friendly proposals because the Delaware
Valley Regional Planning
Commission intends to wait
two years before starting
work on a bike-ped plan. No
bike-ped projectscan proceed
until the plan is completed.
The delay would give
other projects a big advan-

tage in competing for funds.


The planning commission
is responsible for drafting a
regional bike-ped plan to
guide the spending of more
than $65 million statewide
over the next six years. The
federal law stipulates that
every region in the nation
must develop a plan.
The commission's delay
will make bike-ped projects
in an eight-county area ineligible for federal funding for
the next two years!
If you agree this is a raw
deal, sign and send the enclosed postcard to DVRPC
Execut~veDirector John J.
Coscia.

(Continuedfrom p. I )

''The only traffic on the


drive will be people going to
and from the parking lots,"
Coalition President Noel
Weyrich said. "I think it's an
ideal solution, because it
means that the killer drivethrough traffic will be gone
on the weekends. It will be a
safe, quiet place to relax."
Permitting access to the
parking lots will help shield
the closing program from
criticisms that too few cyclists are using the drive to
justify denying motorists access, Weyrich noted.

Cuts b~ SEPTA
would*Hamper
BCke-on-Rail
Proposed sewice cutbacks
on the SEWA commuter rail
lines threaten to severelylimit
the usefulness of SEPTA
Bike-on-Rail passes.
In order to make up for
unexpected funding shortfalls, SEWA has proposed
cutting weekend service entirely on certain lines and
vastly reducing train frequencies during off-peak mid-day
and evening hours.
Hundreds of Delaware
Valley cyclists now hold
SEPTA Bike-on-Rail passes,
thanks to a 1990 lobbying
effort by the Bicycle Coalition.
To lend your su ort to
the m ram, call SJ%A
at
580-!8& and ask for a mail-in
Bike-on-Rail permit application.
More
importantly,
whether you have a e m i t or
not,sign the enclosed' postcard
and send it to SEPTA General
Manager Louis Gam baccini
right away.

"Under this new proposal,


the only people who will feel
put out are those who want to
race through the park and
those who wanttoparkonthe
grass," Weyrich said, "and
we and the Fairmount Park
Commission both agree that
those are people who should
feel put out!"

Author Offers
Ways Out of
0ur Car Woes
(Continuedfrom p.3)

scope, the reader ends up giving priority to things that


strike a chord with his or her
situation or beliefs. For me,
the arguments about the decay ofour cities and the suggestions to limit automobiles
in city centers hit home.
Proposed solutions range
from making cities, suburbs
and the countryside more
walker- and bicycle-friendly
to bringing backcomer stores
to banning cars in city centers and charging higher fuel
taxes.
I do believe Zuckerman
gave the short stick to mass
transit, however. He put this
solution in the long-range
category and to some extent
decried the high cost. I believe work on quadrupling
mass transit everywhere
should begin tomorrow.
Zuckerman's book might
be the most important work
produced in the automobile
age, if his warnings and proposed solutions are heeded.
If not, Zuckerman fatalistically concludes that we will
deserve what we get.

Cyclegram, JulylAugust 1992 p.5

Inquirer Faults PennDOT


On Policies Towards Cycling
A recent Philadelphia Inquirer editorial scolded the
Pennsylvania Department of
Transportation for not giving
"much of a fig about bicycles."
Entitled "Pedaling Backward: Pa. has to learn to appreciate bicyclists," the
June2 editorialurgedthe state
to "get on the bandwagon by
dedicating highway bike
lanes with the demonstrated
fervorof Maryland,Delaware
and New Jersey."
The editorial
was
prompted by a May 31 Inquirer article, "How Come
Pa. Doesn't Like Bikes?"
The article revealed that
PennDOT's titular bicycle coordinator was unable to state
what the agency was doing
for bicycles and confessed
that he personally prefers jogging.

A PennDOT spokeswoman stated flatly that "it is


not practical to put a bike
route on Delaware ~veriue,"
confusing a bike route with a
bike lane.
( A bike route is a suggested itinerary normally c o p
sistingof signs tellingcyclists
which way to go. Abikeplane
is a painted area on a road
reserved for cyclists.)
The regional district engineer stated that PennDOT's
"prime interest" is motorists,
even though the article went
on to cite policy documents
stating that the safety of motorists and cyclistsare of equal
importance in highway planning.
Bicycle Coalition President Noel Weyrich, who was
quoted in the article and provided the newspaper with
background documents,com-

City Police Plan Bike Patrol


With Help from the Coalition
ThePhiladelphiaPolice
Department will likely start
a bicycle patrol in the city's
congested business district,
accordingto police Sgt, Orr.
The pilot project will
consist of four officers and
one supervisoronthehighly
visible patrol.
They hope to begin the
mented that, "It is really
shocking to see in print just
how clueless our state transportationofficials are. I don't
know what's more frightening, their ignorance or their
arrogance."
Weyrich promised the
Coalition would follow up
with PennDOT officials in
Hamsburg to develop a set of
statewide bicycle design policies. He also said he would
seek re-assignment of the bi-

patrol early this summer.


Final details concemingdonationof someofthe equipment have yet to be arranged.
Coalition member
Gihon Jordan has provided
the deparbnent with extensive information about police-on-bike.
cycle coordinator.
The Inquirer editorialtook
parricular issue with a comment by PennDOT spokeswoman that the cycling community has not k e n aneffective agent of change for their
cause.
"If that's true," the Inquirer wrote, "may we recommend that the officials try
something they may not be
accustomed to-taking the
initiative."

COMMUTER OF THE MONTH: Center City Artist Sue Mark


Name: Sue Mark
Age: 26
Residence: Italian Market area
Job: Project Assistant, The Clay Studio, 139N.
2nd St./Resident Artist, University of the Arts,
Broad and Pine.
Years bicycle commuting: Two.
Commuting frequency: Everyday.
Route: Work-Passyunk to Bainbridge to 3rd
to Arch. School-1 lth (good wide street), to
Lombard to Broad.
Reasons for starting: I liked riding my bike
and my friends were doing it. It's cheaper
exercise than a gym and I felt safer coming
home late at night (than walking).
Distance: About 2.5 miles.
Seasons you ride: All. Most of the time I'llride
in the rain. I don't usually ride in the snow.
Bike: 3-speed Boardwalk style.
Parking: At work, 1can park in a hallway or the basement. At school,
I park in my studio space.
Helmet: Yes.

Special gear: Blinking light.


Most enjoyable aspect of bicycle commuting: I enjoy riding and like the exercise. Also,
I know I'm not contributing to exhaust fumes.
Most memorable bicycle commuting experience: I think some of the people in my
neighborhood are not used to seeing a woman
on a bicycle. I have this funky pair of cat-like
sunglasses,and when I wear them and ride my
bike near my apartment, some of the kids have
been known to hum the "wicked witch" music
(from the Wizard of Oz).
Biggest commuting gripe: Potholes!
Advice to people who would like to begin
bicycle commuting :Pick out the safest route
or the route with the least amount of traffic.
Also, I feel because my bike is not so attractive, people won't have such a desire to takeit,
like they may with a shiny new moutain bike.
Note: Sue Mark is moving to Oakland, Cal., at the end of July to
begin graduate school. Learning about the Bicycle Coalition has
inspired her tobecomeinvolved in a simular group in the Bay Area.
-Sue

McNamara

Membership
i~ame
(Address
[City
lTelephone

State -Zip

II am voluntarily setting my membership dues at the followIling level:


-

l$l00
!other

$50

$35
$25
($10 limited income)
Amount enclosed:

(please also send me


I Delaware Valley Commuters' Bicycle Map
I
($5.751$5.25 members)
I Bottle Bill T-shirt (LIXL, tan or blue)
I
($61$5 members)

Total enclosed:

In support of bike-on-rail, Sen. Fumo scolds official ....p. 1


Modified River Drive closing proposal gains support ....p.1
Book Review: An author's call for fewer cars ................p.3
President's Letter: We'll make agencies understand us ..p.3
p.4
Cyclists are calling harassment hotline ...........................
Planners' delay threatens loss of bike-ped money ..........p.4
Inquirer editorial scolds PennDOT ............................... p.5

Don't 'miss an issue. ~f

..

Inside.

I Make Check payable to Bicycle Coalition and send to Mem1I bership, BCDV, P.O. Box 8194, Philadelphia, PA 19101.
Bicycle Coalition of the Delaware Valley
P.O. Box 8194
Philadelphia, PA 19101

not already a
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Your membership includes a one year subscription to
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positive action.
Coalition members are commuters, recreational riders,
messengers, touring cyclists, and others who support clean air
and a healthier urbadsuburban environment.
Join us! Help us win safer roads, the right to bike to work,
and respect from motorists and government.

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