Thursday, December 9, 2010

Handing Out Bike Safety Vests On Nebraska Avenue

One of the bicycle hats I wear is that of a member of the Hillsborough Bicycle-Pedestrian Advisory Committee -- one of several advisory panels of the county's transportation planning agency called the Metropolitan Planning Organization, or MPO.

The MPO plans transportation and advises the county and the city of Tampa on mobility issues. The MPO comes up with a list of transportatioin projects, though that list can be affected by the whims of elected officials.

The Bike-Ped committee is comprised mostly of folks who work in government and egencies, plus several citizens such as myself, CBE bike shop owner Brian Eckman and Jim Shirk.

We watched a presentation about the Riverwalk given by Lee Hoffman, who was asked by Jim Shirk about reports that bicyclists were told to leave Riverwalk. Lee said bicyclists arev allowed on Riverwalk. And I asked for more bike lockup racks on Riverwalk at Curtis-Hixon Park.

There was also a presentation on past and proposed Tampa city bike lane projects.

A familiar face at bike-ped committee meetings is member Tina Russo, Upper Tampa Bay Trails manager and a certified bike safety instructor who had a bag full of extra reflective safety vests that she had from the county sheriff's office.

She gave me five safety vests to give away, and as I biked home along Nebraska Avenue last night, I handed out all five vests to people on bikes who wore dark clothing and had no lights on their bikes.

If you want to hand out free safety vests to people you see on bikes without reflective gear or lights at dark, contact Tina at the Upper Tampa Bay Trail.

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