January 22, 2009
BikeHouston acknowledges that METRO applied to FTA recently for funding to buy a large number of light rail vehicles. Our preference was that these vehicles would have been spec’d for vertical bicycle hangers for the cabin interiors; however, we do not want to fixate on this decision. The bicyclist community wants to work together with METRO in 2009 and beyond to make the Houston region more mobile, greener, healthier, and more sustainable.
Specific topics and projects for 2009 we would like to see addressed:
• We salute METRO for allowing bicyclists on the train after 7 pm on weekdays. We would like to ask for Early Bird bicyclist hours, from 4:30 am – 6:00 am, so that both late and early bicycle commuters may be accommodated
• Please expedite bike rack installation on the old articulated buses, and formulate consistent policy for the use of folding bicycles on artics
• We salute METRO for recently installing bicycle racks at the Cypress Park & Ride. This was an oversight that was corrected when the community spoke out. Every Park & Ride should have bike racks, and every light rail stop should have bike racks at the stop itself or on adjoining non-METRO property; please work with the City and private property owners within the corridors to make this a reality
• We propose free public “lunch & learn” training classes on how to use bicycles on METRO, given by BikeHouston volunteer instructors
- How to use bike racks on buses
- How to use under-bus storage compartments on Park & Ride buses
- Rail hours, and how to ride safely
- Folding bicycle technology
- General bicycle safety information
• Bicyclists are still being passed too closely by METRO bus drivers. Texas CDL Manual recommends 6 ft clearance, but distances less than 3 ft have been experienced – extremely hazardous!
Peter Wang, LCI
Advisor to the BikeHouston Board of Directors