Category Archives: Advocate

Oaks & Spokes in action!

We have some really AWESOME events happening this weekend and we want YOU to be there!

Saturday August 9th 2pm-7pm : Activate14 – Alternative Transportation Design Summit 

Saturday August 9th 6pm- 10pm : Cranks Arms One Year Anniversary Celebration

Activate 14 is an initiative by the AIANC to educate the public on the benefits of good design and sustainability through a series of summer events and design competitions. These multi-component events will activate the building and grounds of the AIANC Center for Architecture and Design (CfAD) located at 14 E Peace Street in Raleigh, North Carolina. The events will feature speakers and workshops, vendors, food trucks, a beer tent, live music, children’s activities, and exhibitions. Oaks & Spokes will have a booth set up with a living board of the City of Raleigh detailing various routes members of the community take daily. Tricks of the trade and personal testimonies are welcomed! We will also have details of our upcoming fundraising project and goals for Fall 2014! A little birdie told me it had to do with Bike Repair Stations installed downtown and on the greenway with the help of the CIty of Raleigh… 🙂

Crank Arm Brewery is a great local spot located at 319 W Davie Street! Founded with cycling pride, Crank Arm is a craft brewery with tasting room located in the warehouse district. Our mission is to provide fresh artisan beer while utilizing green transportation methods. Come celebrate with Oaks & Spokes while we support some of the raddest dudes and best craft brew in the heart of downtown. We also will have more information about this amazing (not-so) secret Bike Repair Station initiative and fundraising project!

And always remember… Ride ya bike!

Give input on Raleigh’s Parks Plan!

The City of Raleigh is currently reviewing the parks system to develop a plan for shaping the future of our parks and Greenways. The city needs input regarding how we use the existing Greenways and what changes we would like to see in use, expansion and maintenance. The Draft Plan is considering expansion of the current Greenways and closing gaps in the existing trails to provide better connectivity; installation of pedestrian and bicycle connections to the nearest transit stops; development of a safety and etiquette program to provide education to all trail users; and providing better maintenance for the trails.

Please click ahead for details on how to make a difference!

Continue reading Give input on Raleigh’s Parks Plan!

Action Alert: FRIDAY Deadline to Send Prioritization Comments to NCDOT

Our colleagues at Bike Walk NC have informed us that we have until end of business day this Friday, Feb. 21 to give public comment on statewide funding for all future transportation projects.

It is crucial that you contact NCDOT division staff, your metropolitan planning organization (MPO), and your representative on the Board of NCDOT, and let them know that you are aware of how serious this situation is for bicycle and pedestrian projects.

What you need to do:

Send an email to the relevant parties!  Copy all these people on your email.

If you live in Wake County, your contacts are in NCDOT Division 5 and CAMPO:

  • Joey Hopkins NCDOT Division 5  jhopkins@ncdot.gov
  • Wally Bowman NCDOT Division 5  wbowman@ncdot.gov
  • Chris Lukasina Capital Area MPO  Chris.Lukasina@campo-nc.us
  • Michael C. Smith NCDOT Board of Transportation  mcsmith6@ncdot.gov
  • Jim Crawford NCDOT Board of Transportation  crawprop@raleigh.twcbc.com

What to say?

Scott Lane, local advocate and owner of J S Lane Company summarized the situation with these three points:

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  1. Establish a Fair Economic Connection between Local Development Choices and Transportation Infrastructure Investment. The current STI and priority systems don’t go far enough in this regard. If bicycle, pedestrian, and public transportation projects are held to a matching requirement to receive state and federal dollars, then the same should hold true for all projects, including new location / widening projects for roadways. Maintenance should be treated similarly. Local governments, both municipal and county, need to be involved in the project selection process, but they also need to take responsibility for their fair share of the costs. Until the day arrives when matching requirements for all transportation projects are a reality, then no form of transportation should have a required local match.
  2. Finance the Complete Streets Policy Already Adopted by North Carolina DOT. North Carolina can then take a firmer stance on financing its adopted complete streets policy, the abdication of which will weigh unfairly on low-income / minority populations across the State that rely on methods of transportation other than private automobile to a disproportionate extent. This fact can be easily seen by considering recent crash statistics: although non-white persons make up only about 28% of the state’s population, 41% of reported pedestrian crashes occurred to non-white people (where the race of those involved was known) in North Carolina between 2010 and 2012. People of all racial and ethnic backgrounds in lower income urban and rural areas also tend to feel the safety effects of automobile-only street design much more keenly.
  3. Recognize that the Old Paradigm of Assigning Economic Value to Roadways Doesn’t Fit the Needs of Many Markets Any Longer. From an economic perspective, investing in walk-able and bike-able communities is becoming a well-established mantra for cities as diverse as Indianapolis, Austin, New York, and West Jefferson, NC. Information-based economies want to see more trails and safe cycling accommodations; service and manufacturing economies rely upon low-wage workers often without good access to their own automobiles – both markets are important to North Carolina’s current situation and its future, and both groups are weighing livable communities and streets heavily in their location decisions. The decision to de-fund bicycle and pedestrian projects with state matching dollars is essentially telling small- and medium-sized communities that they have a much harder path forward to realizing economic prosperity in the new economic conditions in which our state must compete. If anything, North Carolina can emerge as a national leader by financing more, smaller, more cost-efficient multi-modal projects to help make our communities more competitive, instead of investing in single-purpose, major roadway projects that impact ever-fewer communities as their price tags go up and up.

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Here is the link to last week’s op-ed piece in the Charlotte Observer which gives additional viewpoints on the subject:

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2014/02/12/4687685/nc-transportation-reforms-are.html#.UwFl_YW-Nkt .

In addition to this, you can also let your local reps know what local projects you’d like to see completed. Many roads in North Carolina are owned by the state of NC rather than being under control of the local cities and towns. Let NCDOT know what type of improvements you’d like to see such as bike lanes, separated bicycle facilities, sidewalks, and paved shoulders.

This is an important opportunity and we need to let NCDOT know that bicycle projects need a fair chance at funding.

Take Action on Raleigh’s Bike Lane Projects

Raleigh bike pavement marking

There are some big things on the horizon for bicycling in Raleigh that require your action.  The city of Raleigh has an ambitious list of pavement marking projects set for 2014. Pavement marking projects mean striped bike lanes or “sharrows” otherwise known as shared lane markings. The list includes 22 projects near downtown, NSCU campus, and North Raleigh spanning over 27 miles. Oaks and Spokes has been looking over the city’s list of project information sheets and conducted a discussion forum with our advocacy committee and members of the bicycling community to get some initial feedback on the proposals for these 22 projects.

There are some crucial projects in this list: roads that are well used by cyclists and roads that many riders wish were safer. Oaks and Spokes is requesting bicycle riders in Raleigh to give the city your support for these projects. To empower the the decision makers and make these happen, the city needs written feedback from the public.

There are a few ways to do this. There are four public comment meetings happening next week on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, AND Thursday. The information for these meetings is listed below. Attending in person and providing written comments at the meeting is a great way to learn about these projects and talk directly with city staff.  The second option for those who can’t attend is to send an email to bikeraleigh@raleighnc.gov and indicate your support.

Not sure what to say? We’ve studied the list and made some suggestions after getting an initial round of input from the community. We urge you to send a message by February 14, 2014:


Dear City of Raleigh,

As a Raleigh resident, I am writing to show my support for the Bicycle Pavement Marking Projects. I feel that these projects will improve the quality of life in the city by making streets safer for bicyclists of all types. I believe that well-designed bicycle lanes and shared lane markings in appropriate applications will go a long way toward making Raleigh a well-rounded city and provide much needed transportation options for its citizens.

Reviewing the list of projects, I have the following comments as a bicycle rider and as someone who aspires to use a bike for transportation and recreation more often:

  • Ashe Avenue (Project #1): Climbing lanes are preferred on the uphill section for cyclists instead of sharrows on both uphill/downhill lanes
  • Athens Avenue (Project #2): Bike lanes are preferred
  • Dixie Trl/Lake Boone Trl (Project #3): Bi-directional bike lanes are preferred, climbing lanes if possible
  • Gorman St. (Projects 10,11,12,13): Bike lanes needed due to high traffic volumes and speed on this roadway. In addition, this would be a good application for a bike box at the intersection of Gorman, Hillsborough, and Faircloth due to frequent left-turns from Gorman onto the bike path on Meredith College.
  • Fairview Rd (Project #5): This is not a high value project so it would be desired to use markings elsewhere.  This project is not a desired route for cyclists because it connects to a Capital Blvd off-ramp on one side and a in one-way on the other.
  • Hillsborough St (Projects 14,15): Bike lanes are preferred from Morgan roundabout to Glenwood Ave. at a minimum. Shared lanes could extend through the rest of the corridor from Glenwood to the state capitol.  
  • Garner Rd (Project #7): Bike lanes are highly preferred. Garner Rd is a major route out of downtown and is one of the mostly heavily bicycled roads. High volumes and speeds make this an undesirable project for shared lane markings.
  • Martin St (Project #16): This is not a high value project so it would be desired to use the markings elsewhere.  This project is not a desired route because it is parallel to Hargett St which is the preferred bike route and has higher connectivity through Raleigh’s downtown.
  • Wilmington St (Projects 18,19): Bike lanes are preferred.  In addition, the intersection with Morgan St would be a good application for a bike box for cyclists turning left onto Morgan St from Salisbury and those coming inbound to downtown from Hillsborough (Project 14/15).  This would be placed in the left-most right turn lane. 
  • Salisbury St (Project #19): Bike lanes are preferred.
  • Tarboro St (Projects 22,23,24): Bike lanes are preferred from Jones Street to the south.  North of Jones sharrows are desired due to high parking turnover.  It should be noted that parking turnover, road users and street design on Tarboro between Oakwood and Lane still make this is a challenging place for bicyclists and pedestrians.
  • Carbarrus St (Projects 25,28): This is not a high value project because it does not add connectivity to the bicycling network.  It would be desired to mark bicycle lanes along South Street. 
  • Glen Eden Dr (Project #9): Bike lanes are preferred
  • Forest Pines Dr (Project #6): Bike lanes are preferred.
  • Durant Rd (Project #27):  Protected bike lanes are preferred due to traffic volumes and high speed. Bike lanes at a minimum.
  • Strickland Rd (Project #21): Protected bike lanes are preferred due to traffic volumes and high speed. Bike lanes at a minimum.
  • Wakefield Plantation Dr (Project #26): Bike lanes are preferred

Thank you for taking the time to consider my comments on the proposed bicycle facility marking projects.

Best regards,

your name, your address


Of course, you should edit or add to this as you see fit. Where do you ride? Any personal anecdotes or input would help the city makes these projects as successful as possible. Raleigh is starting to move forward on the path to being a bike-friendly city but public support is crucial.

Please take five minutes to send an email to bikeraleigh@raleighnc.gov even if you cannot make any of the in-person meetings. Written feedback to support these projects is the needed.

Interested in knowing more about any of these projects or want a chance to ask the city specific questions? You can attend the following meetings:

Monday, January 27 from 5-6pm, before the BPAC Meeting
Raleigh Municipal Building, Council Chamber
222 West Hargett Street, Raleigh, NC 27602
All projects will be reviewed

Tuesday, January 28 from 4-7pm, presentation at 6pm
Five Points Center for Active Adults Ballroom
2000 Noble Road, Raleigh, NC 27608
Projects for review: Ashe Ave., Athens Dr., Dixie Trl./Lake Boone Trl., Fairview Rd., Gorman St., Hillsborough St.

Wednesday, January 29 from 4-7pm, presentation at 6pm
John Chavis Memorial Park Media Center
505 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Raleigh, NC 27601
Projects for Review: Cabarrus St., East St., Garner Rd., Martin St., Tarboro St., Salisbury St., South Wilmington St.

Thursday, January 30 from 4-7pm, presentation at 6pm
Millbrook Exchange Park Room #2
1905 Spring Forest Rd, Raleigh, NC 27615
Projects for Review: Durant Rd., Forest Pines Rd., Glen Eden Dr., Spring Forest Rd., Strickland Rd., Wakefield Plantation Dr.

Raleigh wants to know: where do you park?

bike rack raleigh

The City of Raleigh has begun a bike rack initiative and wants to know where cyclists want bike parking. This is a great opporunity to provide input on where these racks are installed. City riding has exploded recently and there are areas we all recognize as prime candidates for increased bike parking. Help encourage trips by bicycle by recommending racks at destinations you frequent.

How do I submit my ideas? It’s easy! Just follow these easy steps:

  1. Go to SeeClickFix 
  2. Select “Report an Issue” and enter your preferred location for a new rack
  3. In the Category drop down menu, select “Pick a Bike Rack Location!”
  4. If a request has already been made at this location, hit the “like” button