The meeting began with a getting-to-know-you exercise and then a brief history of the Coalition to orient new volunteers.
The meeting focused on Washington Avenue and strategies for implementing cycle tracks there.
Four groups were developed to brainstorm strategies for reaching out to different audiences and exposing them to the concept of protected bikeways. These audiences included current users of Washington Avenue, 10,000 members of the public, key county staff and elected officials, and bicyclists.
The group focused on helping users of Washington Avenue to imagine the street with a bikeway came up with the following ideas: create an Open Streets event sponsored by local businesses, find a positive example of a street that could be reasonably compared to Washington and highlight the change and relevant statistics, and create and circulate renderings of the proposed cycle tracks.
The group focused on exposing 10,000 people to cycle tracks this year had the following ideas: hold a park(ing) day on Washington Avenue, create a winter bike event, and find an opportunity to use the "pop-up" cycle track (separate from an Open Streets event).
The group focused on educating key county staff and elected officials about high-quality protected bikeways came up with the following ideas: influence the Hennepin County Bike Plan currently being updated, propose that the city include protected lanes in their bike master plan, and after the county elections contact new officials to push for the implementation of the North Side greenway.
The group focused on educating bicyclists on how high-quality bikeways function suggested the following: create a bikeways educational toolkit with FAQs, videos, etc. that can be used for presentations and by cyclists who wish to educate themselves. Other ideas included starting conversations about bikeways, investing in paid media (billboards, etc.), and outreach to different community groups.
After the initial brainstorm, everyone voted on their three favorite projects and the projects into which they wanted to invest their time. The projects chosen for immediate action included: 1) influencing the Hennepin County and Minneapolis bike plans to include protected bike lanes, 2) pushing for the implementation of the Northside Greenway, 3) creating a bikeways educational toolkit, and 4) organizing a winter cycling event.
Each group assigned some tasks, but there’s plenty left to be done! Do any of these projects sound like something you’re interested in? Send an e-mail to Scott and Nadine, and one of them will get you connected to a project you like.
Thanks to Annie for the recap and Chrissy for the photo!