Tag Archives: Education

Ron Burke to step down as head of Active Trans

Jun 17, 2019 | by Kyle Whitehead

After nearly nine years with the Active Transportation Alliance, Ron Burke will step down from his role as the organization’s executive director next month. During Burke’s tenure, Active Trans contributed to many victories, from the growth of Chicago’s advanced bike lane network and launch of Divvy bikeshare, to the creation of separate biking and walking trails on the lakefront, introduction of dedicated bus lanes, and expansion of suburban trails. Active Trans also had wins in Springfield during Burke’s tenure, including legislation requiring K-8 public schools to teach biking and walking education and the recent passage of a state capital bill that includes $50 million annually for walking and bicycling projects. "Under Ron’s leadership, Active Trans has become a more visible...

Using balance bikes to build relationships in Elgin

Jan 3, 2019 | by Maggie Melin

A group of advocates in Elgin is working to advance the city’s decade-old bike plan and boost bike access for children in low-income parts of the town.Elgin Bike Hub is a non-profit organization working for better biking in the northwest suburban city that straddles both Cook and Kane counties. The group is pushing for the community’s nearly ten-year-old Bikeway Plan to be updated and revised as an active transportation plan that prioritizes equity. The updated plan would map out the community’s vision of a connected and equitable network of low-stress bikeways, trails, sidewalks and transit access.Using a mini-grant from Active Trans’ Bike Walk Every Town suburban advocacy campaign, the Elgin Bike Hub purchased four balance bikes (bikes without pedals that...

Batavia advocates connect with local businesses

Jan 3, 2019 | by Maggie Melin

A western suburban advocate has been going door-to-door in Batavia educating local business owners and their customers about the benefits of walking, biking and public transportation.Abby Beck of Walk Batavia/Bike Batavia wanted to help businesses in downtown Batavia better understand how walking and biking can have a positive impact on their bottom line.She asked businesses to place little chalkboards on their counters with the message “How did you get here today?” Customers were asked to mark “walk,” “bike” and “other.”  For two weeks during the month of July, around 20 downtown businesses participated in collecting data on the chalkboards, which were purchased with the help of an Active Trans Bike Walk Every Town mini-grant.Bike Walk Every Town, our suburban advocacy...

Top 10 biking, walking and transit stories of 2018

Dec 21, 2018 | by Ted Villaire

There were plenty of attention-grabbing developments among the top active transportation stories of 2018. Some of these developments helped make our streets safer and more inviting for people using active transportation, while others were intended to give more people access to better transportation options. Here they are. If we missed an important story, please let us know in the comments below. 1. Lakefront Trail separation. After decades of trail advocacy by Active Trans and our community partners, we were thrilled to see the completion of the project to create separate foot and biking paths along the Lakefront Trail. Work began in August 2016 on select sections and then last year, local hedge fund manager Ken Griffin donated $12 million to the create...

Illinois celebrates Walk to School Day with new biking and walking education requirement

Oct 10, 2018 | by Ron Burke

School districts across Illinois are working to meet a new requirement to teach biking and walking safety while celebrating national Walk to School Day on Wednesday, October 10. Illinois crash data shows nearly five children are hit by people driving every day in Illinois while walking or biking within one block of a school. In August, Governor Rauner signed the Bike Walk Education in Schools Act (HB4799) into law. The legislation amends the school code so that every K-8 public school in Illinois is required to provide instruction, study and discussion of effective methods for the prevention and avoidance of traffic injuries related to walking and bicycling. Teaching walking and biking safely saves lives while helping kids get more physical activity, reducing...

Suburban advocacy summit on October 27

Oct 4, 2018 | by Maggie Melin

Do you want better walking, biking and transit options in your community? For people who walk, bike or ride transit in the suburbs, our transportation system is often neither safe nor welcoming. But when bolstered by a collective voice of advocates, transportation conditions in the Chicagoland suburbs have the potential to be transformed. Be a part of this suburban transformation by attending our annual gathering of suburban advocates at our Bike Walk Every Town Summit on Saturday, October 27 in Elmhurst. Bike Walk Every Town is our suburban advocacy program dedicated to lifting up suburban leaders and providing them with the resources and strategic advice needed to be more effective change-makers in their community. Register for the Bike Walk Every Town...

Governor signs biking and walking safety ed. bill

Sep 7, 2018 | by Kyle Whitehead

Every day in Illinois, five kids on average are hit by a driver of a motor vehicle within one block of a school, and more are hit beyond the school zones. A bill that helps address this tragic daily occurrence while encouraging more walking and biking was recently signed into law by Governor Rauner. The Bike Walk Education in Schools Act (HB4799) requires K-8 schools to provide biking and walking safety education. Illinois’ School Code requires automobile safety education, but currently there isn’t a requirement for providing instruction on how to bike and walk safely. This bill is an important step forward in making Illinois a better place for kids to bike and walk. Over the past thirty years, childhood...

Biking & walking safety education bill on home stretch

May 31, 2018 | by Active Trans

Every day in Illinois, an average of 5 kids are hit by drivers of motor vehicles within one block of a school, and more are hit beyond the school zones. A bill that would help address this tragic daily occurrence while encouraging more walking and biking has passed the Illinois Senate and now heads to Governor Bruce Rauner for approval. The Bike Walk Education in Schools Act (HB4799) requires K-8 schools to provide biking and walking safety education. Illinois’ School Code requires automobile safety education, but currently there isn’t a requirement for providing instruction on how to bike and walk safely. State lawmakers have heard from hundreds of people who support this bill. Kudos to Rep. Sonya Harper and Sen....

Free-floating car-sharing program should be welcomed in Chicago

Mar 22, 2018 | by Active Trans

The free-floating car-sharing pilot program passed by Chicago City Council could help residents who don’t own a car get around and encourage more people to live car-free or car-lite lifestyles.Unlike Zipcar and Enterprise CarShare, free-floating carshare companies like car2go don’t require users to pick up and drop off the vehicles in a fixed location for a set period of time. The cars can be parked in any legal spot within a designated zone and reservations aren’t required.The ordinance introduced by 1st Ward Ald. Joe Moreno would set up a nine-month pilot program starting in May 2018. One vendor chosen by the city would be permitted to deploy up to 500 vehicles in designated “home area.”The proposed area includes all of...

2017 traffic fatality totals at MPAC

Mar 1, 2018 | by Active Trans

At the most recent Mayor’s Pedestrian Advisory Council (MPAC) meeting, the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) provided a sobering overview of all the traffic fatalities in Chicago from 2017. While there were no downtown pedestrian fatalities, the West, Northwest, and South Sides all saw a slight increase in pedestrian fatalities, almost all of which fell in the Vision Zero identified "high crash areas." All six cycling fatalities happened on the West side and five of those were in a designated "high crash area."CDOT representatives also provided an overview of Vision Zero West Side outreach efforts. Four Vision Zero West Side staff members attended 225 events and contacted 7,750 people to collect input and share information about traffic safety over the course...