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Whether you enjoy the thrill of mountain biking or a leisurely stroll taking in the scenery, Michigan is the place for summer biking. Pedal through lush forests, over gentle hills, and alongside lakes and streams on more than 1,300 miles of bike trails across the state. Michigan has a tour every cyclist can enjoy. For more information or to plan your summer vacation, visit www.michigan.org/biking

Detroit RiverWalk, Deqindre Cut, and Wheelhouse Detroit are all part of this new Pure Michigan promo on biking in Michigan.

via Todd Scott @ Detroit Trails and Greenways FB

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New Detroit Cycle Blog by Erika Fulk

Erika Fulk is one of IVBP’s most dedicated photo journalist, she’s also the one who put together Downtown Detroit’s Criterium Detroit Cty race. She used to run a site built around her photography in general. But recently she started DetroitSpoke, a blog dedicated to local cycling events and racing. There’s lots of cool stuff to see. +Bookmark it!image

Motor City poised to become Cycle City — BikeRadar.com


Detroit was once known as the Paris of the Midwest; a city with tree lined streets, a cosmopolitan and vibrant mix of cultures and a city of innovators and risk takers.

Today the city is a shell of its former self. While once the 5th largest city in the United States with a population of more than two million, it now has less than half that number – leaving stretches of the city that are vacant. The decline in the auto industry also left factories in ruin. Yet the innovative spirit remains and the city once known for the automobile could be making a comeback as a bicycle friendly local.

“This town has a lot of advantages,” said Marc Bay, co-owner/co-founder of the Detroit Cargo Company, which makes leather bike bags. “There is really a culture of cycling growing in the city, and outstanding stuff is happening in bicycle industry here.”

While the cycling industry probably isn’t enough to turn things around alone for the city, perhaps Detroit’s core industries should be looking at how cycling could help not just Motown but the rest of the country move beyond the current status.

“Personally, I feel that if they are going to prosper; auto manufacturers need to consider being transportation providers, rather than just car-makers.”

Get ready for it! Get in shape, Buy your bike from us!
Read Full Article @ BikeRadar.com

The Link Between Exercise and Brain Function — Bicycling.com

imageimageNew research on middle-school kids explores the link between riding and brainpower — researchers now pointing at the need for more exercise into lesson plans.

On a recent morning in the Boston suburb of Natick, the halls of Wilson Middle School buzzed with the anticipation of a ride. Eighth-grade teacher Mike Hill, a gentle giant of a man, herded 18 students into helmets and out the door. The kids walked a fleet of red mountain bikes to the parking lot..

Though it may not look it, this parking lot sits on the cutting edge of brain science. Hill’s students were volunteers in a new study probing the connections between riding, behavior, and brain function. Lindsay Shaw and Alex Thornton, researchers associated with Harvard professor John Ratey, were testing the kids to see if a program of before-school riding improves their brainpower. The data Shaw and Thornton collect may show precisely how the brain’s electrical functions react to a regular dose of exercise. The researchers are especially interested in the effects of cycling on kids with attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD). People afflicted with ADHD have a difficult time staying focused.

Three years BICYCLING.com did a story about a nationally competitive junior cyclist named Adam Leibovitz. (You can read the piece from the November 2009 issue here.) Adam, then 18, had been diagnosed with ADHD in first grade. After trying the commonly prescribed stimulant Ritalin, he quit the drug in high school and switched to a steady riding. The article was titled “Riding Is My Ritalin,” because that’s how Leibovitz used his daily exercise dose.

One recent study concluded that low levels of fitness are associated with declines in brain structure and function, cognitive abilities, and academic achievement. In contrast, Charles Hillman’s research has shown that a single session of exercise can “charge” the brain’s neuro-electrical workings and lead to higher levels of cognitive functioning.

Read The Full Article @ Bicycling.com

Cycle Progress Moves Forward In Royal Oak, Commission Meeting

imageDecember 3rd 2012 — Every other Monday is city commission night in Royal Oak. This past Monday were ordinances concerning bikes on sidewalks and The Gran Fondo Bike Race

First on the agenda was Royal Oak’s sidewalk ordinances - for a long time now there’s been a law on the books that banned cyclists from riding on any Royal Oak sidewalk, and that there were potential fines and impoundment (though the laws never been enforced)

This Monday Royal Oak City Commission updated the law The new law lifts the city-wide sidewalk ban, and instead reduces the ordinance to Royal Oak’s downtown city sidewalks.. a step in the right direction. A lot of cycle friendly communities have laws like this in their downtown areas; places like Portland, Minneapolis, San Fransisco, even parts of Detroit.

Second on agenda, The Woodward Avenue Gran Fondo Bike Race planned for next summer. The Gran Fondo, designed by Olympic Cycling Entrepreneur, Coach and Track Builder, Dale Hughes, is a 54-mile bike course along the length of Woodward Avenue; Detroit to Pontiac and back. Think european style team pace cars, ton a racers, events for all ages & abilities. 

The thing is though, the event has to be cleared with all the cities along Woodward in order to make it an official annual event - Royal Oak is one of those cities. For people who haven’t witnessed a local Fondo Race, Monday’s meeting was definitely a educational process in which Dale Hughes & The Woodward Action Association took in stride.

Have a look at a few of the segments below.. see all segments here

    

Bike Culture News Makes Front Page Detroit Freepress, Nov.29th

Very cool to see Free Press’ full front page highlighting biking. This a few days after NBC News did a segment about today’s questionable road biking safety.

Freep.com A 599-mile trail stretching from Detroit’s Belle Isle to Wisconsin. Connecting existing trails through the middle part of the Michigan mitten and across its Upper Peninsula.

MLive Governor Rick Snyder introduced his vision for the trail during a special address Wednesday in which he outlined a plan for an environmentally friendly and energy-efficient Michigan.

WDIV Local4 News also ran a segment, complete with local rider Amit Singh

So what now? What’s Next?

Maybe you’re asking yourself, “What can I do now? It looks like the Governor has it under control. Besides, I’m not a long distance tourer." or maybe you’re thinking, "How can I get involved with this? There are some trails here that would really be worth highlighting."

If you think maybe your neck of the woods has some features that seem part of a bigger plan, or you’re ready to volunteer your time to help formulate local game changing ideals, then you’re in luck!

This December 12th there will be a public, town hall style Bike Summit located at the Royal Oak Public Library. It’s on a Wednesday 7PM. This events been in the making for months!

This is a calling to all local Commuters, Road Bikers, Tourers, Casual Town Cruisers, and yes even the Speedy Hipsters. If you’re interested in getting involved with some dedicated people, or you have some ideals that will enhance your ride or make it safer, or you have general questions about the growing culture - then the summit is for you!

Tom Regan will be hosting the event. Tom Regan has volunteered most of his life making South East Michigan a safer place for cyclists; he’s one of the OGs. M-Bike’s Todd Scott will be there taking questions and giving a presentation, as well as Green Cruise Coordinator Tom Dusky, and Heather Carmona, Director of the Woodward Avenue Action Association.

All the details can be found on the Facebook Event Page
Get Involved, Volunteer. See you There!!

Landslide Skatepark, Hall Road Clinton Township, MI.

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November is a good time to start learning basic bmx maneuvering. Indoor skateparks that allow bmx freestyle bikes are the places to hit up during the winter cold months.

Landslide Skatepark is an awesome park with something for everyone. Foam pit, full 12 foot quarterpipe, pool, nice waxed surfaces, ton of edges to grind on. Its a pretty decent sized place; about half the size of Royal Oak’s Modern Skatepark, except Modern Skatepark is more spread out, with more on quarter pipe sections. 

A SHOUTOUT 2 ANYONE interested in trying indoor BMX Skate parks. If you like full contact sports and enjoy a good solid work out rush, then you might really like riding skate parks. Maybe you like handling heavy machinery, or snowboarding? (snowboarding, especially on the quarter pipe sections, works on the same learning curve)

BMX Freestyle is easier and safer than you might think - it’s a sport where the rider’s safety is equal and proportional to the riders skill level, ability and experience.. it’s a, “know your strengths” kind of sport. It just takes some practice to get really good. And most of all it’s a good sport to get into because teaches good personal discipline and sportsmanship.

The first time I hit an indoor skatepark, I was 28, we all went to Modern Skatepark. Jon let me barrow his dirt jumper; his dirt jumper, the red Kromo at the time had a high end rock shox front fork. It was like an awesome pogo stick on wheels. Launching like 10ft of air easy, it was the first time i did a 180spin on a 26inch bike!

As of November 2012 I’ve clocked about a month, month and a half worth of solid bmx ride time; my usual ride is drop bar commuter cycle cross bike. 

After a few good rounds @ Landslide I concluded: 
More people should know about this!
If I could ride this than anyone can, lots of fun!!

Landslide Skatepark allows skateboards, Scooters, Inline Skates, Rip Sticks and BMX Bikes. They’re located on Hall Road, Next to Morley Chocolate Factory Clinton Township

Do yourself a favor and Try it! www.landslidesk8.com

The Bicycle: The Symbol of China’s Transformation

As the country has changed, so has its perception of cycling: first a cultural icon, then a sign of backwardness, and maybe now a Copenhagen-style cool.

The two cities - Copenhagen: the four-season, rainy, cycle capital of “the happiest country in the world”, home to 1.2 million people. And there’s Beijing: a city with a population 10 times that of Copenhagen and four times that of Denmark - they may not seem to share a family resemblance at first glance.

According to a 2008 report by the Earth Policy Institute, between 1995 and 2005, “China’s bike fleet declined by 35 percent, from 670 million to 435 million, while private car ownership more than doubled, from 4.2 million to 8.9 million. Blaming cyclists for increasing accidents and congestion, some city governments closed bike lanes. Shanghai even banned bicycles from certain downtown roads in 2004.”

Recently, prompted by 62-mile, nine-day traffic jams and mutinous U.S. consulates reporting on China’s air quality, the Chinese government made a U-turn in transportation policy for the better, encouraging its citizens to get back in the saddle.

Read the full article @ The Atlantic 

Study: Bicycling Can Save Billions - Discovery News.com

discovery.com | Bicycling Could Save Billions
(via Discovery News)

Compared to driving, bicycling is clearly better for the environment and your health. But how much better is it? 

If people chose to take half of their car trips on two wheels instead of four, health care costs could drop in the billions! A new study offers some hard numbers: If people in the upper Midwest chose to take half of their car trips by bicycle, health care costs would drop by more than $7 Billion. And with better air quality for its now more-fit citizens, the region would end up with an estimated 1,100 fewer deaths each year. the list goes on…

Related: Bicycle Infrastructure Strengthens Local Economies


More than 31 million people live in the Great Lakes region, and like in the rest of the country, they primarily use their cars to get around. Eighty percent of trips taken in the region happen in automobiles, and 20 percent of those trips cover fewer than five miles total…

But a common sense rational can change all that.

Read More @ Discovery News 

Study Finds Greenway Projects The Most Efficient Job Creator

Long appreciated by transportation planners for its construction of trails, sidewalks and bike lanes, public health professionals encouraging Americans to choose biking and walking for commuting and recreation, and local municipalities for reenergizing downtown shopping areas, the federal Transportation Enhancements (TE) program recently added yet another title its long list of accomplishments: 
most cost effective job creator.

A study recently released by the American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials and the Transportation Research Board found that, dollar for dollar, TE projects that were part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) generated more jobs than any other form of ARRA transportation construction plan.

“This study confirms what we have learned through our work in communities all over the country – these greenways create jobs and spark economic revitalization,” says RTC President Keith Laughlin. “As we see here, this is in part due to the proportionately greater labor requirement in their construction, but also because of their positive impact on the health and appeal of communities of all size. These findings demonstrate the importance of RTC’s commitment to protect the Transportation Enhancements program.”

Read The Full Article

American Black Journal - DIA, Detroit Teenagers, Bike City

American Black Journal is a window into American history. Today, the show continues to be a vibrant and provocative forum for newsmakers, celebrities and everyday people.

Recently, The American Black Journal hosted an interview with local Detroiter, cyclists and community activists, Jason Hall.

Jason Hall is one of the Detroit cycling’s cornerstones. He’s the guy that hosts a bunch of cycling events in the city of Detroit - some including Sunday Night Bike-in Movies, the Slow Roll to Slow Jam rides, Suburban Detroit rides, plus the Annual Detroit Bike City event!!

It’s cool to see a local media picking up on the cycling culture, and the positive impacts cyclists are having on the Detroit Community in general.

Skip to 20:00 to watch the interview - or watch the whole thing


(via Detroit Public Television)

Ferndale Businesses Making Practical Bike Parking a Status Quo

Downtown Ferndale - Written by Aaron
Photo by DDA manager Christine Hughes

Following in the examples of larger bike friendly communities Ferndale citizen’s along with the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) and Ferndale Mayor’s Problem Solver Melanie Piana, helped put together what the DDA is calling urban Parklets or a small urban areas reserved for small parks or utility. They can be setup permanently, temporarily or seasonal.

These parklets are sort of one, or one and half car length space - usually in areas where the concrete is painted with yellow lines. The spaces are usually out of the way or in a slow moving traffic areas.

From the Shop’s perspective, its an awesome thing. A couple bars do this kind of thing in Detroit. During big critical mass rides, the bike parking fills, big groups everyone gets to have fun! It’s pretty cool. So Ferndale getting that sort of thing here is pretty sweet.

Just this May Ferndale in Celebration with ARTWN, Western Market installed permanent bike parking for 8 bikes near the front entrance. 

The owner of Western actually said something that he was interested in commuting via one of the commuters with a small, pedal assist motor.

Lot of bar parking fills up fast. Picture of Ye Olde Saloon Royal Oak

Going need a good place to lock a bunch of bikes.
During the Woodward Avenue Brewery’s 15th Anniversary Ferndale City we caught up with Melanie Piana and a Ferndale City Council woman, about bike parking at the WAB “parklet” the spot is just north of the WAB across the street.