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Bikes Belong Produces Video on Paris' Short-Term Bike Rental System
Have you heard the buzz about the short-term
bike rental systems that are rolling into
cities worldwide? Bikes Belong is inspired by
the potential for such systems in the U.S. To
help spread the word, we created a video to
showcase the popular Paris system, Vélib,
which debuted in July 2007. Designed and
created by outdoor advertising giant
JCDecaux, the program includes 20,600 rental
bikes at 1,451 stations throughout the city,
providing an inexpensive, convenient way for
people to use bikes for short
The response has been amazing. Parisians and
visitors alike are using the bikes in huge
numbers, racking up 13.4 million trips by
mid-January—an average of 75,000 trips per
day. A bike rental is free for the first 30
minutes, approximately $1.50 for the next
half hour, and incrementally more expensive
for longer periods. This tiered price
structure makes the bikes appealing for
short-term trips but discourages users from
keeping them overnight, ensuring a ready
supply throughout the city.
The Paris program has revolutionized
bicycling in the city. As word spreads of its
success—and of other programs in Lyon,
Barcelona, Vienna, and Berlin—cities
worldwide are taking notice. Chicago,
Philadelphia, San Francisco, Washington,
D.C., and Portland, Oregon, are just a few of
the U.S. cities that are working to launch
Check out our Vélib
video to see the bike system in action
and learn more about how it works.
Bike Brigade Planned for Democratic, Republican National Conventions
Imagine a fleet of 1,000 bikes greeting
delegates at the Democratic National
Convention in Denver August 25-28. Picture
the same sight one week later at the
Republican National Convention in
Minneapolis-St. Paul. Attendees can check out
and use the bikes for free as they move
around the city during their stay.
This is our vision. We see a tremendous
opportunity to bring the bike-partisan
message of bicycling to convention delegates,
the worldwide media, and the presidential
candidates. Bikes Belong is partnering on
this project with our member companies and
with Humana, one of the nation's largest
healthcare insurers. While we are still
working on logistics—including bike
station locations and insurance—we are
determined to showcase bike-sharing systems
and affirm the value of bicycling as an easy,
convenient transportation option.
National Bike Summit Attendance Surpasses 500
The 2008 National Bike Summit, held March 4-7
in Washington, D.C., was the best one yet.
This annual event is organized by the League
of American Bicyclists with top sponsorship
from Bikes Belong. This year, a record number
of suppliers, retailers, advocates, and our
partners rallied in our nation's capital in
an unprecedented show of strength, unity, and
2008 National Bike Summit snapshot:
- The highest attendance ever, with more
than 500 participants
- Record industry involvement, with 145
industry representatives, including 12 Bikes
Belong board members
- 290 Congressional meetings
- A successful BikesPAC fundraiser,
attended by three U.S. senators and one U.S.
- High-level IMBA sponsorship and
- Introduction of a bill to support an
ambitious national bicycling strategy
- Announcement of a Capitol Hill
bike-sharing program to be launched by May
Bikes Belong is lead sponsor of the National
Bike Summit because we believe
it is crucial to the future of our industry.
We're aiming for 1,000 attendees at next
year's summit. Please join us in March 2009
to campaign for bicycling.
Richard Fries Raising Funds for the Bikes Belong Foundation
Richard Fries, a highly respected journalist,
marketer, and ambassador for cycling, joined
the Bikes Belong team in January as a
professional advisor and fundraiser for the
Bikes Belong Foundation.
A resident of Lexington, Massachusetts, Fries
is well-known as one of U.S. cycling's most
accomplished writers. He is a veteran race
announcer and television commentator. He has
published Bike Culture Magazine
Ride) since 1993. He served as the Marketing
Director of Pedro's USA before taking over as
Marketing Director for the Audi Best Buddies
Challenge rides, which raise funds to help
citizens with intellectual disabilities.
Fries is helping the Bikes Belong Foundation
develop new support for its efforts to get
children riding bikes (primarily through the
Safe Routes to School program). He's also
focusing on projects that promote safe
bicycling by fostering mutual respect among
motorists and cyclists.
The Bikes Belong Foundation, which launched
in the summer of 2006, focuses on children's
bicycle programs and bicycle safety. It is
the sister organization to the Bikes Belong
more about the foundation.
Health Organizations Rally Behind the Bikes Belong Foundation
Our nation faces a huge health crisis. By
2015, 75 percent of U.S. adults and 24
percent of U.S. children are expected to be
overweight or obese.
An increasing number of healthcare companies,
foundations, and innovative corporations have
realized that bicycling is a solution.
They're joining the bike industry in funding
the Bikes Belong Foundation, our 501c3 arm
that backs the Safe Routes to School National
Partnership and other bike safety efforts.
Here's a current list of Bikes Belong
- Bikes Belong Coalition
- Centers for Disease Control and
- Harvest Foundation
- Kaiser Permanente
- Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
For years, the bike industry has promoted the
important role of bicycling in reducing
obesity, road congestion, and air pollution.
Now we're gaining powerful, mainstream
support. Contributions from non-endemic
corporations, foundations, and individuals
boost our efforts to create safe places to
ride and inspire more people to bike.
Bikes Belong members now have new partners in
promoting bicycling for health.
To learn more or make a personal,
tax-deductible donation, visit bikesbelong.org/foundation.
Bikes Belong Coalition Awards 160th Grant
In January, Bikes Belong announced six new
grant awards, bringing our total to 160
projects supported by Bikes Belong members
since 1999. The latest awards back efforts to
encourage people to ride their bikes more
often and make communities safer, healthier,
and more enjoyable places to live.
January 2008 Grant Awards
- Greater Houston Off-Road Biking
Association - Double Lake Recreation Area
Trail Expansion (Texas)
- Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association -
Blankets Creek Trail Expansion (Georgia)
- Whatcom Council of Governments - Coast
Millennium Trail Link (Washington)
- Centerville-Washington Park District -
Iron Horse Trail (Ohio)
- Trails and Open Space Coalition - Pikes
Peak Greenway/South Tejon Street Connector
- Yukon BMX Parents and Riders Association
- Track and Trail Enhancements (Oklahoma)
Our spring grant awards are currently being
reviewed and will be announced in early May.
The next deadline for applications is May 26.
Inaugural REI/Bicycle Friendly Communities Grants Announced
New York City's Transportation Alternatives
and the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation
were selected as the first recipients of
REI/Bicycle Friendly Communities Grants of
$15,000 each. This new grant fund,
administered by the Bikes Belong Foundation
and made possible by generous support from
Recreational Equipment Inc. (REI), helps
aspiring, committed Bicycle Friendly
Communities become great places to ride.
Transportation Alternatives (TA) is using
the award to support a comprehensive
citywide bike parking initiative. The effort
aims to increase bike transportation in New
York by giving cyclists safe, convenient
places to park and store their bicycles.
Chicagoland Bicycle Federation is using their
funding to produce the first of a series of
Sunday Parkways events in Chicago. By setting
aside weekend times for traffic-free biking
on select streets, Sunday Parkways promises
to dramatically increase ridership in the
city of Chicago and create a program that can
be replicated in other cities.
The REI Bicycle Friendly Communities Grant
Program is a collaborative effort of REI, the
Bikes Belong Foundation, and the League of
American Bicyclists. The program invites
advocacy organizations and city planning
departments in League-designated Bicycle
Friendly Communities (BFC) to apply for funding
that will help them reach specific BFC
more about the REI/Bicycle Friendly
Communities Grants Program.
2007 Annual Report Published
Bikes Belong has just published its 2007
Annual Report, offering a comprehensive look
at all of our projects and grants last year.
The 32-page, full-color booklet was mailed to
our members March 21.
2007 was a great year for Bikes Belong. We:
- Contributed more than $530,000 in direct
cash support to national, state, and local
bicycle programs and projects.
- Awarded 22 community grants in 20 U.S.
- Strengthened our relationships with key
members of Congress.
- Launched a nationwide ad campaign to
motivate more Americans to ride bikes.
- Sponsored three of the year's most
important national bicycle advocacy events.
- Funded research projects to collect
important bicycling data.
- Supported the Safe Routes to School
National Partnership as it grew to more than
- Broadened non-endemic support of the
Bikes Belong Foundation, securing several new
sponsors from the healthcare community.
- Developed a new website to provide better
information about our efforts and resources
to help people improve bicycling in their
Bikes Belong membership dollars make this
important work possible.
the annual report.
Bikes Belong Backing 2008 IMBA World Summit
Bikes Belong is a major sponsor of the
International Mountain Bicycling
Association's 2008 summit. Mountain biking
enthusiasts from around the globe will gather
in Park City, Utah, June 18-21 for the 2008
IMBA World Summit.
This strategic gathering will bring together
mountain biking advocates, land managers, ski
resort professionals, trailbuilders, park and
urban planners, tourism officials, and the
bike industry for collaboration, planning,
and celebration. It's an opportunity to share
ideas and help shape a global strategy for
more and register.
Help Wanted: Research and Stats Coordinator
Bikes Belong is seeking a Research &
Statistics Coordinator to join our dynamic
team. This person will help bolster our Bikes
Coalition and Bikes Belong Foundation efforts
by gathering and distilling research and
convey and affirm the many benefits of
bicycling as well as the importance of bike
safety. We need compelling numbers and
quality research to "make our case" on
Capitol Hill and beyond, and we're looking
for a qualified, enthusiastic staff member to
tackle this task.
the complete job description.
Facts & Stats
The more bicyclists on the road, the safer
it is to ride.
In a 2003 report, Peter Jacobsen determined
that as the number of cyclists increases,
cycling fatalities decrease.
He studied communities in California,
Denmark, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands,
and other European countries, with consistent
Peter Jacobsen's report: Safety in
to Bikes Belong e-news.