• January 27, 2014 4:23 PM | Ed France (Administrator)
    The Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition has launched the Youth Bicycle Fleet- a trailer and a fleet of new youth bikes to help bring safe bicycle education throughout our community.  This $12,000 project was the result of funds raised from student leaders at SB High School. Two leaders from SBici (bike club at SBHS), Sergio Garcia & Dylan Carmody shared their experience of how they raised enough money for the purchase to an audience of more than 50 people (including SBBIKE board members, city officials, sponsors, Bici Centro volunteers and high school students)

    SBBIKE staff Ed France and Christine Bourgeois started the event by explaining that three years ago, a feasibility study showed that having a trailer & a bike fleet would triple the number of students that they reach today. It has been a dream for SBBIKE but it never happened because of lack of funding. Thanks to our visionary youth, the trailer and the new mobile bike fleet will be used for community events and even planned for bike education in PE classes.

    Dylan, now a senior at SBHS explained that everybody was very supportive and liked the idea. With the help of another SBHS student, he approached community businesses for sponsorship and he worked with Pedal Born Pictures filmmakers, Jacob and Isaac Siegel-Boettner to show their movie “Single Track High” at the Lobero. He acknowledged all the supporters: Montecito Bank & Trust, the City of Santa Barbara, the Towbes Group, Bartlett Pringle & Wolf, Agility Capital, American Riviera Bank, Hazards Cycle Sport, Santa Barbara Middle School, Trek, Bicycle Bob’s, Santa Barbara Mountain Bike Trail Volunteers (SBMTV) and Pedal Born Pictures.  He concluded with the announcement of the upcoming Youth Bike Summit in NYC over President’s Day weekend. He is hoping to bring back ideas and innovation for bike advocacy and accessibility in Santa Barbara. 
  • January 16, 2014 5:00 PM | Christine Bourgeois (Administrator)

    One look at Santa Barbara Middle School’s Friday afternoon elective schedule, and the school’s commitment to student-centered personal choice, community and service has never been more apparent.

    From the 14 course offerings this quarter, each elective is required to have some kind of service component. SBMS staff embraced this new requirement and designed a variety of creative and humanitarian-inspired elective classes.

    Students made their elective selections based on personal passion, and their own penchant for giving back. Any funds raised in these elective classes are earmarked as contributions back to the Santa Barbara community, or for schoolwide, student-determined sustainability projects.

    The array of classes available to the SBMS students is almost as varied and plentiful as the selection of nonprofit and philanthropic businesses in Santa Barbara.

    A group of SBMS Bike Monkeys (mechanics) are volunteering each Friday at Bici Centro, Santa Barbara’s do-it-yourself bike shop, where the students are tuning up and repairing bikes that will be donated to those who really need and rely on the bicycle for their livelihood and transportation needs. READ MORE

  • January 02, 2014 10:00 AM | Christine Bourgeois (Administrator)
    On Saturday, December 21 at 9:00am, Bici Centro elves were busy getting ready for the event "A Bike 4 Christmas". There were many last minute details before welcoming twenty seven families from the Franklin Neighborhood Center at 10:00am. 
    Outside in the back parking lot, bicycles were lined up by size and to make it more festive, a bow was placed on the handlebar of each one. New & colorful helmets were set up on two tables so children could pick one that they would like to wear. 
    Inside the bike shop, snacks & drinks were prepared while the cycling instructor in charge of the bilingual safety presentation was hanging a bike map on the wall to show parents the best place to take their children for a ride.
    By 9:45am, parents & well-behaved children (ages 3-10) were all lined up on the sidewalk patiently waiting for the door to open.

    The event was a HUGE success. Parents were extremely grateful to receive a lesson of bike safety tips in Spanish. They learned to fit a helmet properly on the head of their child and they were surprised to see that all the donated bikes didn't have training wheels. Bici Centro volunteers helped children choose a bike that fit them and they adjusted the height of the saddle if necessary. Many children didn't know how to ride but with the help of volunteers and parents, they all got a taste of the joy of riding. The smile on their faces was priceless!
    At the end of the event, Ricardo Venegas, the coordinator at the Franklin Neighborhood Center, commented: "Many of those kids will remember this day for the rest of their life. THANK YOU!"

    Photos are online:
  • December 10, 2013 11:14 AM | Christine Bourgeois (Administrator)

    In the so called “Food Basket of The World”, it would surprise most people that some families of the San Joaquin Valley go without a traditional Christmas.  Growing up in this area of great abundance, I am all too familiar with the embarrassment of returning to school after the Christmas holidays and not being able to share in the “What did you get for Christmas?” revelries.  The world we know as a child is incredibly small, and any gift, however insignificant, is a tremendous joy and blessing.  

    In the winter of 1983, the dry spell of no toys for christmas ended.  On what appeared to be a normal trip to the grocery store, my parents made a turn into a nondescript strip mall, where we entered a dusty office of sorts.  There were old office partitions, and various chairs of different shapes and sizes for us to sit on.  This office felt cobbled together with hand me down parts, presumably from the vestiges of better offices.  We were waiting, for I don’t know what, until a lady said they were ready for us.  My sister and I were led through the maze of  partitions until we reached the back of the office.  There, sitting in what must have been his temporary office away from the North Pole, sat Santa, with all his might and glory.  My sister and I looked at each other, then at santa, then at my parents, (who were wearing coy smiles), and then again at each other, before we ran and jumped up on Santa’s lap! Finally some toys for Christmas!

    This year, as a member of the Santa Barbara Bike Coalition, along with the volunteers at Bici Centro, we have the opportunity to help spread some Christmas cheer to children that may otherwise go without Christmas presents.  With the help of the City of Santa Barbara for the purchase of new helmets and the Franklin Neighborhood Center for selecting families on the Eastside, we will give away 25-30 refurbished bicycles to young children in the community.  Although Bici Centro lacks the shine and polish of a fancy toy store or a pretentious shopping mall, we have the dusty homegrown feel of a good non-profit outfit, down to the used mismatched office chairs.

    Anonymous SBBike/Bici Centro volunteer

    On Saturday, December 21st at 10:00am, Bici Centro, a project of the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition (SBBike), is hosting its first "A Bike 4 Christmas" event at the community DIY bicycle repair shop located at 506 E. Haley St.

    SBBike/Bici Centro anonymous volunteer behind the idea “A Bike 4 Christmas” is hoping that it will become an annual event involving more partners & volunteers to fulfill the dream of many young children in our community…

    More info:

  • September 25, 2013 10:03 AM | Ed France (Administrator)
    After 10 years of design, engineering and permitting, a multi-agency effort of Cal Trans, the Army Corps of Engineers, SB County Flood Control, SLOCOG and SBCAG, not to mention the City of Santa Maria, successfully pulled off the impossible: completing a coalition effort to build a safe bicycle crossing on the 101 bridge over the SM river. The crossing was not only dangerous before- it was illegal! Kudos to our region for cutting through the red tape and bringing a great project to life!
  • September 24, 2013 7:29 PM | Christine Bourgeois (Administrator)

    At the second annual Santa Barbara Family Day & Health Fair, on Saturday, September 14, 2013, the City of Santa Barbara hosted Bici Familia, a free bicycle safety event for families alongside community partners.  Bici Familia offered bilingual bicycle safety presentation and a skills course for parents and their children coordinated with City of Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition (SBBIKE), and the Coalition for Sustainable Transportation (COAST) Safe Routes to School Program

    A total of 97 residents participated in two class offerings where they learned how to be safer, more predictable and visible riders. The safety presentations offered an introduction to the rights and responsibilities as a driver of a bicycle on the road and how to make safer decisions while riding a bicycle. The adults and children then practiced bicycle handling skills and drills with SBBIKE and COAST’s League Certified Instructors from the League of American Bicyclists.

    A total of 56 sets of bicycle lights and 75 helmets donated by the City were fitted and given away to participants that completed the class. The helmets were fitted by COAST volunteers who provided bilingual assistance to describe to parents how to properly fit and adjust a helmet. Many of the volunteers are active with COAST’s Eastside Walks program. Eight youth bicycles were donated by SBBIKE and Salud Carbajal, recycled and refurbished by SBBIKE volunteers that were raffled off during the Family Day & Health Fair Event.

    The Santa Barbara Middle School Bike Monkeys gave seasoned SBBIKE mechanics a hand with free bicycle safety check ups for those that rode to the event, while SBBIKE parked the bikes as a valet service for attendees. 

    A special thanks to all of Bici Familia’s 35 volunteers from SBBIKE and COAST, Adams Elementary for loaning 21 youth bikes and to the City for loaning 8 adult bicycles from their fleet and Santa Barbara Junior High for their facilities to make this first time event a huge success.  A big thank you to the organizers of the Family Day And Health Fair from the County Education Office for having us as a part of the big event. 

    Enjoy the Bici Familia event photos.  In case your family missed the Fair, go to SBBIKE for a list of upcoming adult and youth educational programs and the COAST Safe Routes to School calendar Watch this quick video from the League of American Bicyclists.  

    Article published by the City of Santa Barbara

    Happy and safe biking!

  • September 24, 2013 9:34 AM | Ed France (Administrator)
    More then five years after UCSB triathlete Kendra Payne was struck and killed by a truck while riding her bicycle on Gibraltar road here in Santa Barbara, the bill introduced to help prevent any future such tragedy is becoming law. Yesterday Governor Jerry Brown passed AB 1371, the most recent version of the 3ft bill that started in 2006 with Pedro Nava's efforts to enact a safe passing law for bicyclists.

    This effort was championed by the California Bicycle Coalition, a partnership of local coalitions like SBBIKE to lobby on statewide issues.  The 'Give Me 3' campaign has finally proven successful, making it a crime to pass bicyclists with unsafe distance' 

    While the bill is not as strong as earlier versions, what it does is:

    1) Revises and recasts provisions related to the safe passage of vehicles and bicyclists.
    2) Establishes the “Three Feet for Safety Act” that requires:
    a) A driver to provide three feet distance between the vehicle and the bicycle or its operator when passing; and,
    b) A driver who is unable to provide the minimum three-foot passing distance due to traffic or roadway conditions to slow to a reasonable and prudent speed when passing only when doing so would not endanger the safety of the bicyclist.
    3) Makes failure to comply with the “Three Feet for Safety Act” an infraction punishable by a base fine of $35.
    4) Requires a $220 fine to be imposed on the driver of the motor vehicle who is found to be in violation of the “Three Feet for Safety Act” that a collision occurs between a motor vehicle and a bicycle causing bodily injury to the bicyclist.
    5) Requires that provisions become operative on September 16, 2014.
    6) Makes related, clarifying amendments.
    The Senate amendments:
    1) Delete provisions authorizing drivers to enter oncoming traffic lanes by driving to the left of double solid yellow or double solid white line pavement markings in order to provide a minimum three-foot passing distance when passing a bicyclist.
    2) Revise and recasts provisions related to the passing of a vehicle and bicyclist.
    3) Make the “Three Feet for Safety Act” operative on September 16, 2014.
    FISCAL EFFECT: According to the Senate Appropriations Committee, pursuant to Senate Rule 28.8, negligible state costs.
    COMMENTS: According to the author, bicyclists continue to be subject to harassment by aggressive drivers who drive too close to them. When this happens, even the slightest movement by the motorist or bicyclist can result in accidents where, typically, the bicyclist suffers catastrophic injuries or death. The author notes that this driving behavior leads to thousands of accidents annually in Los Angeles alone despite the fact that the City of Los Angeles sponsored numerous public awareness campaigns to curb this behavior.
    Therefore, the City of Los Angeles is sponsoring this bill which would require motorists to provide bicyclists with a three-foot buffer zone when passing. The author and the sponsor believe that this bill will help make streets safer and more user-friendly for bicyclists by removing ambiguity in current law regarding a motor vehicle's responsibility to provide a safe passing distance for bicyclists.
    Under current law, a person riding a bicycle at a speed less than the normal speed of traffic but moving in the same direction as traffic is required to ride "as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway" except when the bicyclist is passing another bicycle, preparing to turn left at an intersection or driveway, or when reasonably necessary to avoid conditions that make it unsafe to ride along the right-hand edge of the curb (for example if there are parked cars or other obstructions in the roadway). When passing a bicycle that is proceeding in the same direction as traffic, a driver of a motor vehicle is required to pass the bicycle on the left at a safe distance without interfering with the safe operation of the vehicle or bicycle.

    SB 1464 (Alan Lowenthal) of 2012 was vetoed by the Governor because it authorized drivers to cross over double yellow or double white pavement markings in order to provide the minimum three-foot clearance when overtaking a bicyclist. In his veto message, Governor Brown noted that the bill could increase the incidence of head-on collisions for which the California Department of Transportation could be liable. By removing this provision, this bill now fully addresses the concerns raised by the Governor with respect to safe passing of bicyclists by vehicles where vehicles are not able to provide the full three-foot passing distance by requiring that vehicles slow down and pass only when it is safe to do so.
    Previous legislation: SB 1464 (Alan Lowenthal) of 2012 would have set requirements for the safe passing of bicyclists by motor vehicles and established fines and penalties for failure to abide by these requirements. That bill was vetoed by the Governor on the grounds that the bill authorized a dangerous maneuver (crossing double yellow pavement markings) and would weaken the state's defense to lawsuits.
    SB 910 (Alan Lowenthal) of 2011 would have established a minimum three-foot passing distance and required vehicles to slow to 15 miles per hour (mph) when passing a bicyclist with less than three feet of passing distance. That bill was vetoed by the Governor.
    AB 60 (Nava) of 2008 would have required drivers to pass bicyclists with a minimum clearance of three feet, a violation of which would have been an infraction punishable by a $250 fine. In addition, AB 60 would have made it a misdemeanor or felony if the person operating the motor vehicle in violation of the above requirement caused great bodily harm to the bicycle operator. That bill died in the Assembly Transportation Committee.
    AB 1941 (Nava) of 2006 would have prohibited a vehicle from driving in a designated two-way left-turn lane, for purposes of overtaking and passing a bicycle or merging into adjacent lanes of travel. In addition, AB 1941 would have required motor vehicle drivers to leave a minimum three foot clearance when passing a bicyclist with violations assessed with a base fine of $250.
    In addition, AB 1941 would have made it a felony or a misdemeanor, upon conviction
    , for a person driving a motor vehicle to cause great bodily injury or
  • August 22, 2013 11:46 AM | Ed France (Administrator)
    Many Old Town residents were not represented in the hearing, and we have done our best to share their voice. Please see this short video produced by Michael Montenegro on our behalf: 

    Crossing Hollister Ave from Michael Montenegro on Vimeo.

    I would also like to thank Robin Elander for surveying the business community on our behalf, about these potential changes. The feedback we received from the business community was critical in how we decided to advocate on this issue, and will continue to be critical to implementing bike lanes and ongoing revitalization and safety improvements.

    Working with the Old Town Concerned Citizens, especially Phebe from CopyRight, Rob and Rubayai from the GV Community Center, former Councilmember Jean Blois, and Phil from Larry's auto parts, was also very important in informing how to move forward and hopefully in starting a lasting partnership in Old Town public policy matters.

    COAST's Safe Routes for Seniors program has also been invaluable in bringing concerns of residents walking their neighborhoods and the hazards they can face. Those seniors making the effort to speak out last night have made it clear that revitalization can't happen without safety and walkability. Not to mention getting bicyclists a place to ride so that we can get them off of crowded sidewalks!

    I know that City Council members have all volunteered a significant amount of their time in understanding these complex options, and that staff have worked tremendously hard to study the various implications in a short time frame. I hope that as these options move forward Public Works, Planning, Neighborhood Services, and legal council can all work together to present further clarified and refined options for potentially relocating parking to facilitate bike lanes, modifying middle turn lane striping, and especially re-evaluating start and stop points of the two lane study to complement Ekwill Fowler alternative southern routes instead of conflicting overlap. The City departments together can better analyze revitalization goals, public safety and livability improvements, and multi-modal transportation goals as well as vehicular congestion concerns. We hope that staff and council can move forward quickly with a plan that best reflects Old Town residents and business as well as public safety.

    The Bicycle Coalition will work over the next week to submit our survey of local businesses (~30), local, primarily Spanish speaking bicyclists (72) as well as technical questions that we hope can help refine the draft Two Lane study from Kittleson and Associates.

    For now, I would simply like to thank all involved for your time, creative efforts, and dedication to improving the lives of the Old Town neighborhood and for valuing safe bicycle lanes along the Hollister- Cross Town Bike Route.

  • August 15, 2013 2:01 PM | Christine Bourgeois (Administrator)
    Youth Bikes Buildup and BBQ/Potluck on August 09, 2013 was a great success! 
    Food was delicious, company was excellent and 10 youth bikes are ready to roll for our Earn-A-Bike programs (Pedal Power). 
    But we need more help: FIVE Pedal Power programs are on the calendar.

    Bici volunteers with bike mechanics experience are invited to join the fun for two more Youth Bikes Build.

    Next week, on Friday, August 23register online HERE

    Friday, September 6Register online HERE

    Pedal on!
    SBBike team.
    SBBIKE Team
  • August 07, 2013 9:44 AM | Ed France (Administrator)
    Board of DirectorsThis July at our Board of Directors strategic planning retreat, the SB BIKE Board made a commitment to not only continue growth in our community service programs, but to step up and grow a professional advocacy program that will make a real impact in public policy. 

    Bicycling is often not well understood by planners. It is hard to quantify bicycling- most communities and traffic models simply never count them. Bike infrastructure is often considered an amenity as opposed to a transportation network, and as a result there are two often major gaps within our established 'bike routes'. Too often bicycling advocacy comes in late in the game, making minor changes to big projects, often resulting in disjointed infrastructure gains.

    The SB Bicycle Coalition aims to turn this around. We are starting with development of a project called 'Connecting the South Coast' which is not just an inventory of existing bicycle routes, but a blueprint for what our bicycle network should look like in 2020. We are very pleased to have brought on board Timbo Stillinger, our UCSB Bren Graduate School of Environmental Science and Management summer intern, to help us develop this project. Together with Timbo, our Advocacy Committee and Executive Director will be completing this document, producing a video, and launching a professionally staffed public policy program to promote bicycles - as a legitimate and measurable form of Transportation.

    20% of all trips by 2020. That's our goal. Will you help us reach it?
Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition, PO Box 92047, Santa Barbara, CA 93190
Bici Centro, PO Box 91222, Santa Barbara, CA 93190
located at 506 E. Haley St, Santa Barbara, CA 93103
Phone: 805 617-3255
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