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This is the City of Tucson's Bicycle & Pedestrian Newsletter. It is designed to inform Tucson's bicyclists and pedestrians about current bike/ped happenings, how you can get involved, and how you can have fun on bike or on foot!
 
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Aviation Bikeway Bridge Repaired

 
A plank bridge along the Aviation Bikeway has recently been repaired with new bridge decking. For several years, bicyclists have advocated for improvements to the wooden bridge near Freedom Park. Thanks to bridge-specific funding from the Regional Transportation Authority, bicyclists and pedestrians using this popular route will have smoother trips.
 

The bridge before repairs (left) and after (right).

The Aviation Bikeway is a paved, off-road bike path that runs from Ironhorse Park to the intersection of Escalante and Kolb Roads. It is a fun route that takes you along the famous "rattlesnake bridge," as well as past the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base storage facility - where you can see numerous old planes.

New Downtown Bike Parking


Heading downtown to enjoy a delicious local restaurant? Will you be mailing a letter at the downtown post office? No matter what brings you downtown, you'll find over a dozen new parking spaces for your bike.
 

Bicycles are parked near La Cocina on Washington Street.

You'll find eight new bike parking spaces in front of Street Taco on Congress Street, twelve bike parking spaces at La Cocina on Washington Street, and six bike parking spaces at the downtown Post Office. This map shows exactly where the new parking is located. 
 

New bike parking at the downtown post office.

A big thank you to the Department of Transportation's Streets & Maintenance Division, who helps install and maintain all bike parking on city property.

Road Closed, Bikes Exempt


While Seventh Avenue between Seventh Street and Toole Avenue is currently closed to cars because of construction in the area, the street remains open to bicyclists and pedestrians. For bicyclists, Seventh Avenue is a popular route into and out of downtown.
 

Bicyclists can travel north and south on this stretch of Seventh Avenue, which is closed to cars. Pedestrians can use the sidewalk.

As you can see above, plastic barricades divide the open part of the road so that bicyclists can travel both north and south on this stretch of Seventh Avenue. The sidewalk remains open to pedestrians.

Pedestrian Advisory Committee Seeks New Members

 
The City of Tucson's Pedestrian Advisory Committee (PAC) is looking for an enthusiastic individual to represent the interests of pedestrians in Ward 2 or 4. If you know someone who would be a good fit for this volunteer position, please encourage them to apply. You can find the brief application form on our website.

The PAC is a committee of interested citizens who learn about best practices in pedestrian planning and programming, hear from other members of the public, and, ultimately, advise the City of Tucson on pedestrian issues.

 

The PAC meets on the third Wednesday of every month.

 
The PAC meets on the third Wednesday of every month from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the community room at the Ward 6 City Council Office (3202 E 1st St). Subcommittees also meet every month. PAC meetings and subcommittee meetings are open to the public, so please attend a meeting to see what being on the PAC involves. And, even if you don't apply to be on the PAC, we hope you'll attend and share your pedestrian experiences and concerns.

January Bicyclist of the Month

 
January's Bicyclist of the Month, Martha Retallick, has logged some serious mileage over the years by biking through all fifty states. These days, Martha's bike trips are a bit shorter - but just as much fun.

Where do you bike?: "During the week," Martha says, "I commute to the Connect Coworking space in downtown Tucson. I've been a Connect member since last July, and it has been a wonderful experience - much better than working at home by myself. On weekends, I go to places like the post office, the credit union, the food co-op, and community events."

 

Martha and her bike on Tucson's iconic "snake bridge."

What made you start riding regularly?: Martha started biking shortly after she graduated from the University of Michigan in 1979. When she was laid off from her job a year later, she set off on a long bike trip: "My plan was to ride to Minneapolis, where the job market was much better. But I met another long-distance cyclist, who said that he had a goal to bicycle in all fifty states. 'Me too!' was my reply."

Several trips, two mountain ranges, a few deserts, twelve years, and 15,000 miles later, Martha accomplished her goal. 

"I also experienced many off-the-bike adventures," Martha says, "including a brief stint as a Kansas wheat farmer."

She concludes, "During my travels, I learned that you can go far – and live simply – with a bicycle. This is how I live today. To the point where I'm almost 60 years old and have never owned a car."

Where in Tucson would you like to see more investment in biking?: Martha says, "I'd like to see more support for our forgotten cyclists. They are the homeless, immigrants, the working class and the poor, and others who have no other transportation options."


What advice would you give to other Tucsonans who want to bike more? "Build up to it gradually," says Martha. "Remember, we all have to start somewhere."

Thanks, Martha! We're inspired by your commitment to bike trips long and short!

 

Coming Soon:

  • Want to nominate someone for bicyclist or pedestrian of the month? Email Jessica. (You can nominate yourself, too!)

 
  • Next month's newsletter will describe our big plans for the Bicycle Boulevard network.
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