Seacoast Bike/Walk to Work Day 2013 Was a Great Success
If traffic on the Seacoast seemed a little lighter last week, thank the hundreds of commuters participating in the 11th annual Seacoast Bike/Walk to Work Week (May 13- 17, 2013). Part of a national effort to encourage commuters to leave their cars at home and have more fun getting to work, Bike/Walk to Work Week featured the Seacoast Corporate Commuter Challenge and culminated with free commuter breakfasts around the Seacoast on Friday, May 17.
Here are some links to media coverage of Bike/Walk to Work Day:
Tour de Breakfast fuels about 466 who bicycled, walked to work
Seacoast bicyclists join commute
The human-powered commute
Bicycle commute right in my wheelhouse
Communities and employers hosted commuter breakfast locations in Dover (City Hall), Durham/UNH (New Hampshire Hall at Main St. and College Rd.), Exeter (bandstand), Lee (Stevens Field), Newmarket (The Bike Factory on Main St.), North Hampton (Gus’ International Bike Shop), Pease (Grill 28 at the golf course), Portsmouth (Popover’s), Rye (Rye Public Library) and Stratham (Timberland). While most commuters enjoyed just one breakfast, some hearty cyclists rode the Tour de Breakfast and stopped at as many of them as they could.
For a full listing of this year's Commuter Breakfasts and other Seacoast events for Commute Green NH, check out our Seacoast Bike/Walk to Work Day page.
The week of May 13th-17th also saw the Commute Green NH Challenge and the Seacoast Corporate Commuter Challenge . Winners this year in four size categories are:
Papa Wheelies Bicycle Shop (Small: 1-15 employees), IAPP (Medium: 16-199 employees), National Visa Center at Pease (Large: 200-999 employees), and University of New Hampshire (Extra-Huge: 1000+ employee).
Bike/Walk to Work Week aims to promote bicycling as a healthy and safe way to get to work, decrease traffic congestion, improve air quality, and raise public awareness of opportunities to improve bike facilities around the state. “You're also fitting a workout into a busy day, reducing your pollution footprint, and avoiding traffic jams," says Josh Pierce, president of Seacoast Area Bicycle Routes (SABR), one of the main sponsors of the week. "Here on the Seacoast, we're blessed with relatively flat terrain, stunning scenery, and several great public transportation options, making car-free commuting a great idea."
“You see deer, you hear birds. When you’re riding a bike, you really can channel the 10-year-old within,” adds Marj Foote, who commutes from Kittery to her work at UNH combining bicycle, Wildcat Transit, and sometimes her car.
Partners in the event include Seacoast Area Bicycle Routes, Rockingham Planning Commission, Strafford Regional Planning Commission, local municipalities and employers. Food, drink, raffle prizes, and services are provided by Popovers Bakery, St. Anthony's Bakery, Billingsgate Deli & Market, Grill 28 at Pease, the Old Salt Restaurant, Adelle's Bakery, Rye Public Library, the Big Bean, Crackskulls Coffee Shop, Papa Wheelies Bike Shop, Gus’ International Bike Shop, Exeter Cycles, Wheel Power Bicycles, Lonza, Newmarket International, Bikram Yoga Portsmouth, Yoga on the Hill, Three Bridges Yoga, and the UNH Department of Kinesiology
Pease Multi-Use Path
Help Close the Gap!
In 2003 the Pease Development Authority (PDA) secured a federal Transportation Enhancement grant to build a multi-use path alongside Grafton Drive from Corporate Drive to Route 33, then continuing west along Route 33 to Old Portsmouth Avenue. The project addresses a critical safety need by allowing Pease-bound bicycle riders on Route 33 to avoid the dangerous Grafton Drive intersection, and instead get off Route 33 back at the Route 151/Portsmouth Avenue intersection, and follow Portsmouth Avenue and the path onto the Pease Tradeport.
The project has been subject to several delays, but as of fall 2012 is ready to proceed. Unfortunately the original grant is no longer sufficient to complete the full project. The NH Department of Transportation (NHDOT) has agreed to additional federal funding for the project, which can cover up to 80% of project costs. The missing piece is the 20% local funding needed to match these additional federal dollars. A total of $105,000 in additional local matching funding is needed to complete the project.
The City of Portsmouth has pledged up to $40,000 as part of this match, and the Town of Newington has pledged $10,000. A member of the PDA Board of Directors has personally pledged $1,000 toward the project. As a small non-profit, SABR has committed $5,000 to the project and challenged businesses at Pease to step forward at a similar level. SABR has partnered with the Tenants Association at Pease to urge Pease Tenants and employees to help make this project a reality at long last. We still need to raise $50,000 to complete this project, and we need your Help!
Individual and company contributions for the project may be made to SABR, which will bundle the funds and forward to PDA as project sponsor. Contributions made in this way are tax deductible, as SABR is a 501c3 not-for-profit organization. Donations may be made online via SABR’s secure Paypal link. Alternately, checks can be sent to Seacoast Area Bicycle Routes (SABR), P.O. Box 765, Portsmouth, NH 03802. Note that if adequate funding cannot be raised and the project does not move forward, contributions for the project will be returned.
Support the Path!