Action: Bicycle and Pedestrian Funding at Risk in Tacoma!

Last night Matt and I received an email from Liz Kaster, former City of Tacoma employee. She told us that “things are looking pretty dire for bike/ped funding.” Diane Wiatr, Tacoma’s Mobility Coordinator’s job is on the line if the Bicyclist and Pedestrian community doesn’t voice the importance of the Bicycle/Pedestrian funding in Tacoma. She told us that if Diane is laid off, “it will mean the end of Bike Month as we know it, the bike parking program, implementation of the Mobility Master plan, the whole shebang.”

There are a series of public City Budget Priority Meetings this month where Cyclists need to have a voice. I’ve included the list below. Please attend if you can. I’ve also included a .pdf of the flyer that Liz sent us and is linked here. Feel free to print and distribute. RideTacoma will be sending out reminders of when these meetings are taking place. If you can’t make it to the meetings visit the City’s website at to fill out the City Services Questionnaire 2012. To email your thoughts directly to City Council, visit and click on “email the entire council.”


Voice Your Support by Attending a City Budget Priority Meeting:

Monday, July 16: 6 p.m. at the Snake Lake Nature Center (1919 S. Tyler St.)
Wednesday, July 18: 6 p.m. at Stadium High School (111 N. E St.)
Thursday, July 19: 6 p.m. at Lincoln High School (701 S. 37th St.)
Monday, July 23: 6 p.m. at Baker Middle School (8001 S. J St.)

Continue reading

Road Closures: SR-16, South Tacoma Way, Center Street has a piece outlining some important road closures:

South Tacoma Way:
Thursday, July 5 and Friday, July 6: Reducing traffic to one lane in each direction between Pine and Wilkeson Streets from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Thursday, July 12 and Friday, July 13: Reducing traffic to one lane in each direction between Pine and Wilkeson Streets from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Monday, July 16, Tuesday, July 17 and Wednesday, July 18: Closing all lanes between Pine and Wilkeson Streets from 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. Detour via South Center Street.

SR 16 :
Monday through Friday, July 9-13, and again Monday, July 16:

  • 9 p.m. – close Union Avenue on-ramp to eastbound SR 16.
  • 11 p.m. – close all eastbound SR 16 lanes at Union Avenue. Detour via Union Avenue interchange, South 38th Street and I-5.
  • 4 a.m. – reopen all eastbound SR 16 lanes. (Note: On Saturday, July 14, eastbound SR 16 will reopen at 6 a.m.)
  • 4:30 a.m. – reopen Union Avenue on-ramp to eastbound SR 16.

South Center Street:
Tuesday, July 10 and Thursday, July 19: Closing all lanes between Pine and Wilkeson Streets from 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. Detour via South Tacoma Way.

Friday, July 20: Closing all lanes between Pine and Wilkeson Streets from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. Detour via South Tacoma Way

Oh yeah, and Exit 133 is still closed through mid-July …

For more information, visit the WSDOT project page.

News: Rustin Way Reopens Today

After a year of belt tightening Don’s Market Deli can breath a sigh of relief. The hill that connected Rustin Way to Rustin proper opens at 8am this morning. The News Tribune writes:

The gates blocking the long waterfront roadway from crossing onto Point Ruston’s property will swing open at 8 a.m, said Point Ruston development manager Mike Cohen.

The construction barriers impeding Baltimore Street’s connection to Point Ruston will fall sometime Friday afternoon.

The newly realigned roadway replaces the century-old Ruston Tunnel with a treelined, bike and pedestrian-oriented boulevard that includes a wide multi-use sidewalk path.

Read more here:



Wrap-up: Disaster Relief Trials with Cargobikes in Portland, OR

Our very own Matt participated in a Disaster Relief Trial in Portland this past weekend. The purpose of the race was to help the local Emergency Management Department plan for potential disasters. For more info see here. Matt Newport took his family and his xtracycle to participate. You can find his report on his blog

In the News: Milton drops Helmet law

Milton’s City Council has voted to drop its helmet law, citing liability concerns. The New York Times has the full story:

For 15 years, until June 1, Milton, population 7,000, 45 minutes south of Seattle, required helmets for all bicyclists and skateboarders. But with its 12-officer police force stressed by an increase in domestic violence, alcohol abuse and property crime, all of which surged through the recession, law enforcement priorities now go way beyond hectoring people about their headgear.


And an inability to enforce a law on the books, the town’s insurance consultant argued, created administrative unevenness that — in the event of an accident by someone who was not nagged or cited about helmet use — posed a liability risk that could bankrupt the community with one swipe from a punitive-minded jury.

Now they still recommend you wear a helmet:

“Of course you should wear a helmet,” [Mayor Debra Perry] said in an interview in her office. “But this is a parents issue — parents need to be supervising their children, making sure their children are well dressed and have helmets on. Wearing flip-flops and shorts and no helmets on skateboards and bikes is just stupid.”

Read the full article here:

In the News: Bob Stidwell, Bikes to fight the disease that killed his wife

The News Tribune has an article today about Bob Stidwell, an 80-year old Tacoma Widower and cyclist, whose wife Patricia recently passed away of cancer. His response: he’s going to ride to Albertson’s stores around Pierce and Thurston county to “educate passers-by on multiple myeloma, ask for donations and talk about his lovely wife.” (Source: The News Tribune):

Bob Stidwell’s idea was born out of tragedy.

It was conceived during nightly dreams while the 80-year-old Tacoma man lay in a sleeping bag beside the hospital bed of his wife, Patricia.

Stidwell initially wanted to tell people about multiple myeloma, the blood cancer that was killing his wife of nearly 46 years. Then he decided to raise money in hopes of helping researchers find a cure. Finally, he discovered that melding his efforts with his passion for bicycling would personalize his mission.

Thus began the dream of combining his two lifetime loves.

By the end of July, Stidwell plans to ride his bicycle hundreds of miles to Albertsons stores in Pierce and Thurston counties, where he will educate passers-by on multiple myeloma, ask for donations and talk about his lovely wife.

Stolen: Traitor Ringleader Fixed Gear

More stolen bikes. What is going on!:


Nick Schank’s bike got stolen today around 3ish close to the parkway and hanks corner bar. It has deep turquoise wheels and hot pink grips!! Keep an eye out and call Nick, Jon, or I if you see it rolling around.

Traitor Ringleader (small frame)
Chrome riser bars w/HOT PINK GRIPS
White pedal cages w/leather straps

Stolen: Red Surly Cross-Check

Matthew Burke emailed me last night asking me to post on his stolen Surly Cross Check:

The bike is a red 2003 Surly Cross-Check. It was stolen while locked to a rack in the gated parking garage in my apartment building (Chelsea Heights). I was away for over a week (for my wedding!) so it could have been stolen any time between 5/18 and 5/30, but was probably stolen between 5/18 and 5/23.

The serial # is: M3060229
I believe the frame is 60cm.

Some distinguishing features:

  • the bike had black fenders and a black rear rack when it was stolen 
  • grey Crank Bros. Candy pedals
  • Shimano LX rear derailleur
  • Shimano bar end shifters
  • Blue and black tape on the drop handle bars
  • 3 chainrings on this Cross-Check
If you see it around lock it up and email

Bike Month: Free Bike Cages Downtown Tacoma

View Downtown Tacoma Bike Cages in a larger map

Downtown cyclists now have a couple of secure bike cages to keep their precious bikes safe. It’s $25 for a full year of parking, but free during Bike Month! Find out more on cages and on parking bikes downtown at Downtown On The Go.

Secure, covered bike parking is available in the Park Plaza North Garageand the Pacific Plaza Parking Garage. The Park Plaza North bike cage is located on the 5th floor, directly across from the skybridge to Broadway (next to the Broadway Center) and includes bike racks. The Pacific Plaza Parking Garage is located on the second floor with an entrance on Commerce. Both cages are locked with a code and users need to sign a waiver and pay for either a quarter or a year.

  • Full year (January 1 – December 31) – $25
  • Quarter 1 (January 1 – March 31) – $8
  • Quarter 2 (April 1 – June 30) – $8
  • Quarter 3 (July 1 – September 30) – $8
  • Quarter 4 (October 1 – December 31) – $8

Download the Park Plaza North Bike Cage Waiver or the Pacific Plaza Bike Cage Waiver,  fill out and submit to receive the code and start parking! You can see photos of the cages on Facebook.

Via Tacoma Downtown Blog