HUB: Your Cycling Connection

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HUB: Your Cycling Connection

Our Mission is to make cycling an integral part of the transportation culture.

Website: http://rmcyclist.info
Location: Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows
Members: 8
Latest Activity: Mar 11, 2015

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Comment by Jackie Chow on March 11, 2011 at 11:25am

Hi Kimberly,

Welcome to our cycling group! We have a local chapter of the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition in Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows and meet every 2nd Thursday of the month from 6:45 to 8:45 in the MR library (downstairs room in the back).

We promote cycling as a way of transportation, and are trying to make City Council and staff realize that cycling deserves a much bigger piece of the pie of the transportation budget and should be given a higher priority by the Planning and Engineering Departments than it's getting now (we're basically at the bottom). It's essential to provide separation on some of our busier roads to make it safe and more pleasant to cycle for cyclists of all ages and abilities, as well as provide shortcuts/more direct routes for cyclists and pedestrians. Hopefully we'll also be able to help bring about a shift in our transportation culture, which right now is still very much a car culture. I'm from Holland, and I know that basically people in Holland are no different than people in Canada, and it would be very easy to introduce a cycling culture here if the conditions are right. There's an awful lot of rain in Holland, so that's really not the excuse. People are just as lazy in Holland as they are here. You need to make it much more convenient and pleasant to bike. In Holland the average annual spending per capita on cycling infrastructure is about $40. The result of consistent focus on improving cycling since the early seventies is that it's by far the best place in the world for getting around by bike.

Here in Canada/North America we're being told: "just put on your helmet, and you'll be fine". However, the number of deaths and injuries from cycling related accidents are far higher in North America than they are in Europe. Part of the problem is that since we don't have a whole lot of cyclists on the road, drivers aren't looking out for them. Also, drivers tend to see cyclists as a nuisance. We slow them down, and they feel all cyclists disobey the law. What they tend to overlook though, is that drivers are breaking the law as much, but it has become socially acceptable (pretty much everybody routinely exceeds the speed limit). When you disobey the law as a cyclist, you might endanger mostly your own life, when you disobey the law as a driver, you have to realize that you're in control of a "killing machine", and the consequences can be way more severe than if you're on a bicycle. Cyclist/car accidents are actually most often due to driver error.

Cycling of course won't work for everybody and for all trips. But we can all make a commitment to make cycling a bigger part of our lives. Besides being good for the planet, it's good for our health, it will improve livability of our towns (less noise pollution, more eyes on the street and therefore potentially a reduction in crime, less space needed for parking and less congestion on the roads), it reduces our dependence on oil, etc. And also: it's a lot of fun. It helps you to feel more connected to your community. I see a lot of parts of Maple Ridge where I'm sure many drivers have never been. And you see so much more when you're riding around on your bicycle, especially if you're a "sit-up" cyclist like me.

I'm hoping to start organizing some "Discovery Rides" in and around Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows this year. I think it'll be nice to have some destinations, to make the rides more interesting: e.g. an organic farm, a blueberry picking trip, a ride to Cliff Falls with a picnic, a visit to a small company in MR that makes velomobiles and kayaks, the still to be opened cheese factory, etc. If you or anybody else has any ideas, please let me know!

Comment by Virginia Friend on January 9, 2013 at 5:52pm

Hi fellow cyclists,  I purchased my "Kross" bike last summer from Maple Ridge Cycle & am so happy with it.  I hadn't cycled for many decades so found it a little intimidating for a couple of weeks.  Once one is past 60, one must re-learn all things physical, but I persevered.  It's wonderful.  Mostly I've ridden on the dykes and going uptown for shopping and was quite impressed with the  routes.  The dykes are so safe, so beautiful, and so very rewarding.  Some road travel is quite intimidating since there are no proper bike lanes and I admit, I used the sidewalks somewhat, but, all in all, Maple Ridge is one of the best for bike travel on the back streets.   I'm hoping for the best this coming season.  Regards, new member, Virginia

Comment by Jackie Chow on January 9, 2013 at 9:08pm

Hi Virginia, welcome to our group! Good for you that you got back into cycling! Yes, there's some great cycling in our area, on the dykes and on some of the quieter roads. If you're not just looking for the most direct routes and are willing to take some round-about way, and you don't mind cycling on the sidewalk along some roads, it's quite feasible and pleasant to get around by bike. You may want to check out HUB's website: bikehub.ca, and our local blog: rmcyclist.info, so you can have a better idea of what we're all about. We try to organize monthly bike rides during "cycling season" (which can be the whole year through, I know, but we try to pick dry, somewhat warmer days, so we take a break during the rainy season). If you're interested in getting involved, or even if you're not, you're also welcome to attend our meetings, on the 2nd Thursday of the month, from 6:45 to 8:45 pm, at the Maple Ridge library in the Greenside room (tomorrow's meeting has been canceled by the way, so the next one will be on Feb. 14).  

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