Bike Walk Mississippi
Thank you for visiting the Bike Walk Mississippi website! We are happy to announce that we will be launching our brand new website (same address) during Bike to Work Week! Check back here in the coming weeks to find the state's premier resource for bicycle and pedestrian issues!
Celebrate Bicycle Month, Bike to Work Week and Bike to Work Day all in May! Here is a list of events around the state of Mississippi during the Month of May! Let us know if you want your event listed! Email us at: bikewalkmississippi.org
During the entire month of May, you can Win! Post a picture of yourself on a bicycle to our facebook page: www.facebook.com/bikewalkms or tweet a picture to @bikewalkms and you will receive a free Share the Road Sticker, Bike Pin and Bike Walk MS Membership Discount!
Bicycle Events in a city near you!
Saturday, May 7th: Museum to Market Trail Clean Up: 9am (Corner of Whitworth St & Moody St)
May 16-20th: Bike to Work Week!
---Ride your Bicycle to Sneaky Beans in Fondren during Bike to Work Week and receive a free cup of coffee!
Bike Walk MS will be at Sneaky Beans all Week!
---Ride your Bicycle to Lumpkin’s BBQ and get 2 plate lunches for the price of ONE!
Bike to Work Day: Friday, May 20th: Park & Ride: Can’t bike all the way from your house? Park in Fondren, enjoy coffee at Sneaky Beans and Bike to Work from the Bean…then join us back at Sneaky Beans for: Happy Hour from 4-6pm at Sneaky Beans for Bicyclists! Get $1.00 off beer on Bike to Work Day!
For more information visit: http://bikehernando.com
- Ride of Silence, Wednesday, May 18 at 7:00 p.m., starting and ending at Hernando Court Square.
- Bike to Work Day gathering, Friday, May 20 at 7:00 a.m., Hernando Court Square.
May 16: Free Bike Safety Evaluations //May 17: Tuesday night bike ride, 10-26 miles based on your abilities//
May 18: Silent Ride for Awareness, 5-8 miles includes Music & Food//May 19 bicycle rodeo//May 20 Bike to Work Day with three stations set up around town.
Tuesday, May 17: Free Bicycle Clinic at Moore’s Bike Shop, 6pm
Thursday, May 19- Bike to the Farmer’s Market
Friday, May 20th- Energizer Stations with Refreshments from 7am-8:30pm (Stations: Hattiesburg Clinic/Forrest General, USM, Keg & Barrel and Hattiesburg City Hall) Also, whn you ride your bike to these stores, you’ll receive special discounts---Caliente grille, 206, Keg and Barrel, The Depot Coffee Shop, New Yokel Market, Corner Market, Smoothie King. Find out more at: www.Biketoworkhattiesburg.com
· Bicycle Rodeo, Saturday May 7th, 9am-11am at Olde Towne Middle School
· Bike to Work Week and Bike to Work Day: Ridgeland maps are available at City Hall, & Ridgeland Chamber of Commerce. Business teams who participate will receive recognition in the next issue of Ridgeland Life.
· Basic Maintenance Clinic, Monday, May 23rd at 6:15pm at Indian Cycle
· Ride of Silence, May 18th at 6:15pm at Northpark Mall in Ridgeland
The Ride of Silence™ is a silent bicycle ride established to honor cyclists who have been killed or injured while cycling on public roadways.The Ride aims to raise awareness that cyclists and motorists share the same road and to encourage respect and consideration of each other on the road.
· Soulshine Blues and Groove Bike Ride, Saturday, May 28th at 8am at Soulshine Pizza off Highland Colony. A benefit for the American Cancer Society. Two ride options are available: 25 and 50-mile rides. Entry fee is $20
· Monday Group Bike Rides at 6pm, every Monday in May. Meet at Indian Cycle in Ridgeland. There will be two groups, a beginner and an advanced group.
· Wednesday Mountain Bike Rides at 5pm, every Wednesday in May at the Ridgeland Trails. Visit the Tri-County Mountain Bike Association website for driving directions and details at: www.tricountymtb.org
Last Updated (Wednesday, 04 May 2011 20:26)
Bike Summit 2011
Bike Walk Mississippi goes to Washington!
Did you know that YOU were represented at the 2011 Bike Summit in Washington, D.C.? Delegates from Mississippi spent the week meeting, learning from and collaborating with bike and pedestrian advocates from across the country at the Bike Summit in D.C. This year at the Summit, the Mississippi delegation included: Melody Moody, (BWM’s Executive Director), James Moore, (Vice- President of the Board for BWM and Owner of Moore’s Bike Shop in Hattiesburg), and Jeff Peel, (BWM Board Member, Tupelo native and Staff of the League of American Bicyclists). The Mississippi delegation took to Capitol Hill on Thursday, March 10thwhere we were able to meet with legislative staff from the offices of Senator's Roger Wicker and Thad Cochran and Representative’s Nunnelee and Palazzo.
The National Bike Summit was a chance for members of Bike Walk Mississippi to learn from and collaborate with Bike and Pedestrian advocates from across the nation. Our own James Moore, (BWM Board Member) helped lead the “First Timers Orientation” to equip advocates with a relevant message for our elected officials. In addition to preparing for our ‘ask’ on Capitol hill, the Mississippi delegation attended seminars on “Active Transportation and Social and Economic Equity” (We believe in ensuring all communities and low income neighborhoods benefit from safe, affordable and accessible transportation options connecting them to jobs and economic opportunity). Knowing that Businesses are the key to what we are promoting, Mississippi delegates learned about “The Impact of Corporate investment in creating Bikeable communities”. Stay tuned right here to learn more about how Bike Walk Mississippi is working with both the business community and low-income communities to educate and advocate for a more pedestrian and bicycle friendly state!
Through our partnership with the League of American Bicyclists and America Bikes, we presented the message to Congress that in this economy, “bikes mean business”! In an effort to show the positive impact that biking and pedestrian projects have on communities and businesses in Mississippi, the Mississippi delegation shared with Congress examples from around the state. Specifically, James Moore, Owner of Moore’s bike shop showed the increase that the creation of the Longleaf Trace (through Transportation Enhancement funds) brought to his business in Hattiesburg. “The similar increases in business experienced by other small employers along the 41 mile trail route show a suddenly attractive return on investment” (James Moore). Mr. Moore was also able to paint a picture in our meetings about the future efforts to extend the Trace into downtown Hattiesburg further increasing the city’s development. He states, "The same Transportation Enhancement investments that have driven my business for a decade will soon be the primary engine that drives the economic prosperity of Downtown Hattiesburg". You can see James Moore's full article on the League of American Bicyclist's blog here!
We understand that we are in a time where Congress is working to cut programs and save taxpayers money; therefore we want to show that in these tough economic times, bike and pedestrian projects are a fiscally responsible choice! We must invest in solutions that solve multiple problems while working to increase our quality of life! When we were in D.C., we did not ask for increased funding but instead our "ask" to Congress was that continued dedicated funding for programs such as Transportation Enhancements, Safe Routes to Schools and the Recreational Trails Program will help the state of Mississippi create jobs, increase economic development, health and so much more!
We know that in Mississippi, increased biking and walking allows a multifaceted solution to:
Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZicX71kmGQ
Transportation Commissioner Race: Feb. 1st
Because of a split vote, there will be a special run-off election for the Northern District Transportation Commissioner on Feb 1st.
Candidates John M. Caldwell and Mike Tagert have graciously answered our bicycle and pedestrian centric questions. These questions should give those of us who are interested in a more inclusive transportation system more information concerning their views on these topics. We submitted several questions to these two candidates which is why you may notice different questions but the ones that each candidate answered are reflected below. Please vote in this upcoming election as the Transportation Commissioner is a very important office for ALL users of the roads in Mississippi.
Answers given by Mike Tagert:
Q: What ideas do you have for improving safety on our roads? (vehicular deaths, cyclist’s safety, etc.)
A: (MT)Road safety is the most important issue and responsibility of the Commission. Mississippi has not graduated a state trooper class since 2007, and we support legislation needed to provide a class of troopers to make our roads safer. Additionally, most counties in our State do not have access to radar detection. This is yet another way to keep our roads safe, provided that local communities favor this action. It’s a fact that seatbelts save lives every day, and I feel that this safety measure should be stressed and promoted by the Transportation Department, so that more lives are saved. Annual funding should be committed for promoting the proper usage of seatbelts and proper child car seat usage and installation. For cyclists, helmets and reflectors/LED lights are vital safety measures. Bike helmets save lives, and they are not worn often enough. Living in a “college town,” I can see, firsthand, students not wearing a helmet while cycling to and from campus through busy streets and intersections. A separate lane for cyclists only is another safety mechanism which can save lives. Providing cyclists with designated lanes can ensure safer routes for all.
Q: Are you familiar with the Complete Streets concept, and would you support it as a policy for the State of Mississippi?
A: (MT) Our streets are a vital component of the livability of our communities. They should be for everyone to use, motorist or bicyclist, pedestrians or the disabled, or those utilizing public transit. I am familiar with the Complete Streets concept. While I support the concept and would like to see it used, I believe that local officials should play a leading role in the implementation of local policy. I would support the Complete Streets or a similar concept for state roads under MDOT’s purview and with guidance and input from local communities. I think more people need to be educated on the elements presented in the Complete Streets concept, and this, in turn, will lead to increased adoption throughout communities in the State. Mississippi’s roads should be built with all users in mind.
Q: How will your transportation plans for Mississippi be inclusive of ALL the people who use roads?
A: (MT) Whether one bikes, walks, or uses public transportation, I believe that everyone should enjoy the quality roads that Mississippi offers. As Mississippi’s major source of transportation, roads are unique and vital to Mississippi’s workforce and economy. They connect our towns and cities and allow us to trade and communicate efficiently. Transportation not only means jobs and economic growth for Mississippi, but transportation systems also affect our quality of life. All Mississippi residents should have adequate transportation. For example, we need to ensure that all new projects are compliant with the requirements in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and we need to make sure that we have an implementation plan in place for retrofitting pre-ADA projects. Our roads should be designed well and considerate of those who drive, cycle, walk, or use public transportation to ensure that everyone has access to Mississippi’s transportation infrastructure.
Q: How will you increase access of our roads for people who don’t or can’t drive?
A: (MT) Public transit is important for those who need to travel but can not or do not drive. Heavily populated cities and towns need more public transportation options; however, smaller towns and cities also have needs for transporting those who can’t or don’t drive. Many cities have privately funded special transit services in place for citizens to call on, but they can become expensive. This is why cities, large or small, need some type of public transit services in place to provide those with transportation needs. I will work with local communities to identify more public transit options.
Q: Do you support infrastructure that supports cyclist and motorist safety such as widening shoulders and increasing bike lanes, sharrows, signs and paths?
A: (MT) Often, when people think of transportation, they only think about roads and the vehicles they drive, when in fact there are various modes of transportation, including cycling and others. I believe our citizens should have access to and the freedom to choose from a variety of transportation options. I support wider road shoulders, creation of bike paths and lanes, increase signage for safety, and better sidewalks. More opportunities for cycling results in increased health benefits. Mississippi provides a great atmosphere for businesses and investors, and our infrastructure should support that with transportation solutions for both businesses and the people who live and work in our cities and towns. Good infrastructure is essential for both economic development and quality of life, which go hand in hand.
Answers given by John M. Caldwell:
Q: Oil Price Vulnerability: An NRDC report in Nov 2010 ranked Mississippi #1 in vulnerability to gas price increases. The average Mississippian pays 6.5% of income on fuel. The same report MS ranks 44th in efforts to reduce dependence on foreign oil. What can MDOT do reduce the shock of gasoline price increases for Mississippians?
A: (JC) When it comes to MDOT and the commissioners ability to "reduce the shock" we will be very limited. That is not to say that we do not have a role to play. We do. Reducing our own dependence will be more important when the price spikes... and it will again. I have been a bike rider and participated in an Olympic distance triathalon. Even bike trails quickly run out when the desire is to travel 25 miles or more. We need to keep that in mind when we build them. Creating an economic network that encourages walking, riding, short driving distances and car pool programs can also help us reduce our dependency thus reducing the shock wave.
Q: Safe Routes to Schools: MDOT held its first Safe Routes to Schools Conference in Jackson this week. What will as commissioner to increase safe and healthy transportation options and opportunities daily exercise for school-kids in Mississippi?
A: (JC) I am very familiar with the Safe Routes to School program. The safest and most efficient means of travel to school is a yellow school bus. Even at 8 mpg average our buses have an average ridership of over fifty students per trip. That is very efficient and very safe and reduces car traffic dramatically. Just go to the elementary schools on the first day and see the difference when many more drive their own vehicles. Of course, walking and biking when safe is healthier. It is interesting how many schools do not have adequate sidewalks. Mississippi law mandates bus availability when students live over one mile from the school, yet few communities have a sidewalk or greenways network that support a one mile radius from each school.
Q: TIGER Grants vs. Congressional Earmarks: There has been talk of replacing traditional congressional earmarks for transportation with competitive national programs such as the TIGER grants. What will be your strategy to make Mississippi competitive for grants that reward innovation?
A: (JC) Grants and earmarks are very much the political norm and well received when they arrive. Sadly, states like Mississippi with only four US Congressmen never get our fair share. For every dollar received in a photo op, we can be assured the states with more political clout are getting much more in actual dollars and proportionately.
Q: Federal Livable Communities Programs: Both candidates say you want to promote job creation. Part of the attraction of a community as a place to locate a business, especially a high tech business like FNC in Oxford or University Spin-offs in Starkville is the quality of life and healthy transportation options within the communty. What is MDOT's role in supporting the Livable Communities Initiatives that are being developed at the federal level by DOT, HUD and EPA?
A: (JC) MDOT's role in economic development is great. We should be a proactive reliable enabler. It is that simple.
Bike Walk Mississippi hopes that providing these answers will equip you with the information needed to make an educated decision on February 1st. If you live in the Northern District, we encourage you to please vote in this election. This candidate will make up one part of a three part group that supervises the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) and is a very important position for cyclists! Let's make sure that bicyclists and pedestrians voices are heard!
Transportation Election Archives:
ARTICLES POSTED JANUARY 10TH: See the links below for more information about tButch Brown's (current MDOT ED) retirement.
Click here to read how each candidate feels about Butch Brown.
An announcement in the Sun Herald about Butch Brown's retirement in June.
An announcement in the Natchez Democrat about Butch Brown's retirement.
Warner McBride - Article from the Desoto Times Tribune:
Joey Hood - Article from the Desoto Times Tribune:
Ray Minor - Article from NEMS360.com:
Larry Lee - Article from the Desoto Times Tribune:
An article from each of the current candidates:
Mike Tagert - Article from The Dispatch: http://www.cdispatch.com/news/article.asp?aid=9485
Bike Walk Mississippi will continue to post more articles as they come available.
"Tea Party Oxford" has also published a Q&A with each of the candidates. You can find it here:
Last Updated (Thursday, 27 January 2011 20:45)
Pardon our Progress
Please pardon our progress! We are working to make our website a better resource for you!
Last Updated (Wednesday, 03 November 2010 00:45)