Saturday, March 31, 2012

Glow-in-the-Dark LED Handlebars



Hundreds of law-abiding cyclists die each year on the roads. Besides wearing a helmet, having a rear-view mirror and other safe riding tips, there are other ways that cyclists can ensure that they're clearly seen by motorists -- especially in the dark.


Via Yanko Design, from Boston-based industrial designer Mitchell Silva comes Glo-Bars, an interesting prototype for a cost-effective handlebar system that has integrated LED lighting in them. The LEDs light up the path for the cyclist, while also rendering the rider very visible to everyone else around.


The Glo-Bar system also includes turn signals (accessed via buttons near the front stem of the handlebars) and braking lights behind, increasing the safety factor for its rider. Silva describes the design process:
For the construction of the prototype, I cut long strips out of the bars and installed plastic tubing on the inside of the bars to help keep them rigid. I then installed approximately 40 high-efficiency LED bulbs in the inner plastic tubing, and installed a momentary actuator button on the back of the bars. The whole system runs off of a watch battery.



It's a nice workaround having to wear lights on yourself to the point you might look like a Christmas tree. Though Silva is now in the process of improving this prototype by ensuring that the handlebars' strength isn't compromised by the installation of the lights, it's nevertheless a cool idea that we hope to see used more often on the streets. More over at Mitchell Silva's Coroflot website.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Electric Bicycles Are Coming



Electric bikes are too often overlooked when people look for green ways to get around, and that's a real shame, because they are pretty cool. Thanks to their electric motors that assist the rider, they can make bike-commuting more accessible to people living in hilly area, or people with longer commutes, or those with physical problems that make regular bikes too difficult to use.

According to a new report from Pike Research, "the worldwide market for e-bicycles will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 7.5% between 2012 and 2018, resulting in global sales of more than 47 million vehicles in 2018. China is anticipated to account for 42 million of these e-bicycles that year, giving it 89% of the total world market. The e-bicycle market is anticipated to generate $6.9 billion in worldwide revenue in 2012, growing to $11.9 billion in 2018."

The graph above is a bit tricky to read, but I think that if you look at the scales on the right and left, you can see that the colored bars exclude Asia-Pacific, and that the yellow line is on a whole other scale and represents the much larger fraction of e-bikes that are sold there.
North-America is starting from a much lower base, but it is forecast to grow at 22% compounded per year between 2012 to 2018.

An important transition will be away from lead-acid batteries to the much cleaner and better performing lithium-ion models:
The vast majority of the e-bicycles sold in China, the world’s largest market, utilize sealed lead acid (SLA) batteries. While this has resulted in extremely low-cost e-bicycles in China, it has also led to a number of challenges including e-bicycle traffic congestion, lead contamination, and manufacturers effectively ignoring laws relating to e-bicycles speed and weight limits. Pike Research anticipates that the global penetration of lithium ion (Li-ion) batteries will grow from 6% in 2012 to 12% in 2018. Cost pressures from Asia Pacific will keep manufacturers interested in SLA batteries through this decade, but once manufacturing efficiencies have driven down the costs of Li-ion, we will start to see the decline of SLA as the battery of choice in e-bicycles.
Via Pike Research

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Top 10 US Cities for Cycling

With warmer weather and rising gas prices, there's never been a better time to hop on a bicycle, especially while you're on vacation. I have always felt that it is the best way to see a city, since it gets you around faster than walking and you get to experience the city through all five of your senses. Plus when you bike you can stop wherever you want, you can talk to people.

Along with established or in-the-works bike shares, my Top 10 US Cities for Cycling, all with populations over 100,000, feature an abundance of great rental shops, municipal bike racks, exciting trails, and dedicated bike lanes.


Austin
Home to seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, Austin is a bike lover’s mecca: The city estimates that more than 6,000 people ride bikes here each day. The Lance Armstrong Bikeway will soon connect East and West Austin with a dedicated bike path for the first time (4.6 miles of the planned 6-mile path is now complete), and the Barton Creek Greenbelt offers a 7-mile mountain biking trail right in the heart of the city. These are just two of the reasons Austin is recognized as a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Cyclists. The city has earned this prestigious spot by excelling in bicycle education, evaluation, and enforcement. Thanks to a recent partnership between the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization and Armstrong’s Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop, Austin’s bike-share program will launch in 2013 with 450 bikes located at kiosks in downtown and East Austin. For now, temporary bike-share programs are available during special events like the annual SXSW festival in March. And if you don’t have a bike and have trouble hailing a cab after the bars close, hop onto one of the city’s numerous pedicabs.

Bikeable Miles
155 miles of bike lanes and 170 miles of off-road, multi-use trails

Rent a Bike
Austin offers a slew of savvy bike shops, including Mellow Johnny’s (rates start at $20 for four hours) or Barton Springs Bike Rental (rates start at $7.50 per hour), which also offers bike tours of Austin ($35 for two hours).

Boston
Not long ago, Boston was often cited as one of the worst cities for biking. Dismayed by the unsavory title, Mayor Tom Menino started the Boston Bikes initiative in 2007 headed by former Olympic cyclist Nicole Freedman. In the past five years, Boston has created over 50 miles of bike lanes (up from just 60 yards), installed 2,500 bike parking spaces and 850 bike racks, and established numerous city-wide programs to promote cycling and bike safety. The city recently ranked number one in the country for safety for bikers and pedestrians by the Alliance for Biking & Walking, and carries silver-level status as a bike-friendly community from the League of American Bicyclists. The New Balance Hubway bike-share program debuted in summer 2011, garnering 100,000 rides in the first 10 weeks. In 2012, Hubway plans to expand into neighboring Cambridge, Somerville, and Brookline, and hopes to add even more stations in Boston proper.

Bikeable Miles
52.2 miles of bikeways

Rent a Bike
The Hubway bike-share system – with over 600 bikes and 61 stations – costs $5 for one day or $12 for three days. The first half-hour of your ride is free; then it’s an additional $2 for up to an hour, $6 for up to 90 minutes, and $14 for up to 2 hours of riding.

Chicago
In his first year as mayor of America’s third largest metropolis, Rahm Emanuel laid out ambitious plans to “make Chicago the most bike-friendly city in the country.” To that end, he has proposed a 500-mile network of bike paths, with at least one path within a half-mile of every Chicago resident. In the meantime, the city already boasts over 12,000 bike racks, more than any other U.S. city, and one of the best dedicated urban bike paths around: The 18.5-mile Lakefront Trail takes bikers through several popular parks and attractions, with sweeping skyline views around every bend. Several high-capacity bike parking areas are located throughout the city, including many of the city’s rail stations and at Millennium Park, where the state-of-the-art McDonald’s Cycle Center even offers showers and lockers. And when it comes to bike-share programs, things have never looked brighter for the Windy City: A system launched in 2010 by Chicago B-cycle consists of seven self-service bike rental stations at several popular Lakefront locations, and the city recently contracted with Alta Bicycle Share to make a whopping 3,000 bikes available at 300 solar-powered, self-service stations this summer.

Bikeable Miles
117 miles of on-street bike lanes, more than 30 miles of marked shared lanes, and dozens of miles of off-street paths (including the Lakefront Trail)

Rent a Bike
Bike and Roll Chicago has been operating on Chicago's lakefront for 19 years at top Chicago destinations such as Millennium Park, Navy Pier, Wabash & Wacker (across from Trump Tower), North Avenue Beach, and historic Hyde Park (President Obama's neighborhood). Rates for one of their new Trek models start at $10/hour and $35/day (save $5 on the daily rate by booking online). The same company operates Chicago B-cycle, with rates starting at $5/hour and increasing by $2.50 every half hour; after 4 hours, the $20/day rate applies.

Denver
Biking is a great way to explore Denver since visitors can take a B-cycle to almost every major attraction in the city. The B-cycle bike-share program, one of the first of its kind in the nation, provides access to the riverfront, the Denver Botanic Gardens, City Park, downtown shopping areas, and the Golden Triangle museum district. The weather is great for cycling, too, with blooming trees and flowers in the spring, community bicycle events in the summer, and abundant fall foliage (B-cycle stations are closed from December to March). Denver has the added bonus of being 30 miles from Boulder, another great bike-friendly city. Denver’s smaller, outdoor-loving neighbor has its own, more extensive B-cycle share program and hundreds of miles of downtown bike lanes and mountain biking trails. Even the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, a year-old professional bike race on par with Tour de France, deems both cities excellent for biking. The seven-day race begins in southwestern Colorado, travels through several Rocky Mountain towns, including Boulder, and ends dramatically with a time-trial finish in downtown Denver. Free for spectators, the 2012 challenge will be held from August 20-26.

Bikeable Miles
850 miles of off-street paved trails, plus hundreds of miles of bike lanes and dirt trails

Rent a Bike
The base day rate at Denver B-cycle bike share starts at $8, with reasonable usage fees accruing after the first 30 minutes: $1 for 30-60 minutes after checkout and $4 for each additional 30 minutes. You can pick up and drop off your B-cycle at any of the 52 stations around town.

Minneapolis
The Twin Cities emergence as a bike-friendly superstar coincided with a general plan to make the area more livable. Launched two years ago, Nice Ride had over 100,000 rides in 2010 and over 217,000 rides in 2011; rentals will start again for 2012 sometime in the spring. Currently there are 116 stations and 1,200 bicycles, with plans to add 30 new stations – mostly in downtown St. Paul – and 128 more bikes this year. The cities host bike-themed events “almost every weekend,” says Dossett, from scavenger hunts to organized rides to cycling races. In 2011 alone, Minneapolis added 37 miles of bikeways, installed hundreds of bike-specific street signs, and created a citywide bike map for the first time. “All of these things are happening at the same time that we’ve made this great investment in the last five years,” says Dossett. “You bring all of that together and I think our future is very bright.”

Bikeable Miles
81 miles of on-street bikeways and 85 miles of off-street bikeways

Rent a Bike
A 24-hour subscription to the Nice Ride bike-share program costs $6, after which you can ride for free for the first 30 minutes. Fees are $1.50 for up to an hour, $4.50 for up to 90 minutes, and $6 for each additional half hour after that.

New York
Conventional wisdom holds that biking in car-clogged New York City is a fool’s errand best personified by the plucky bike messenger weaving in and out of Midtown traffic, not always successfully. It’s true that two-wheeling it in Manhattan is a giddy experience, but those jolts of adrenaline can be meted out safely thanks, in part, to the city’s recent bike boom. Developing the country’s first bike path in 1894, stretching over five miles from Prospect Park to Coney Island via Brooklyn’s Ocean Parkway, New York City has long welcomed bikers with its relatively flat terrain and dense urban proximities. Since 1993, the city has created over 100 miles of car-free greenways linking parks and communities in all five boroughs, and over the past four years 260 miles of bike lanes have been added. Ridership has increased 20 percent over the last decade, with the NYC Department of Health estimating that over a half million New Yorkers now ride bikes. An extensive bike-share system from Alta Bicycle Share will open this summer with 600 stations and 10,000 bikes in Manhattan and Brooklyn. “Once the stations and bikes are in place it’s just a matter of time before the word spreads that, if used correctly, bike sharing can be the fastest, cheapest, and most fun way to get around town,” says Brogan Graham of Alta Bicycle Share. Riders will be able to walk up to any station, swipe a credit card at the solar powered terminal, and get on the go.

Bikeable Miles
260 miles of bike lanes and 100+ miles of car-free greenways

Rent a Bike
Until the bike-share program kicks off, try Hudson Urban Bicycles, conveniently located just a block from the Hudson River Parkway in the West Village. Cruisers, hybrids, and mountain bikes can be rented at $5/hour or $30/day on weekdays and $7/hour and $35/day on weekends. Free bikes are offered to guests at many city hotels, including the Bowery Hotel, the Jane, James Hotel, the Nolitan, and the Maritime, among others.

Portland
It makes sense that a city with the highest percentage of bicycle commuters, according to the U.S. Census, would also be a great bike city for travelers. Serious cyclers will notice as soon as they touch down at PDX and head to the on-site airport bike assembly station. More casual bikers might observe that Portland drivers behave a bit differently than back home, since cars will stop in the middle of the road for you. Portland is one of only three cities nationwide (and the only one with a population over 200,000) to be designated at the platinum level for bike-friendly communities by the League of American Bicyclists. The city has 80 on-street bicycle parking corrals (with space for 10-20 bikes each), and numerous resources for mapping your route, both in paper form and online. Plans are moving forward for a bike-share program to launch in early 2013. An ambitious citywide initiative will increase the bikeable network to nearly 1,000 miles of bikeways by 2030, as well as expand bike parking options, update street signs, and promote bike safety and education so that Portland continues to be as bike-friendly as possible.

Bikeable Miles
318 miles of bikeways, including bike lanes, greenways, paved park paths, and cycle tracks

Rent a Bike
There are over a dozen shops that rent cycles, from vintage wheels to tandem bicycles to mountain bikes. Try Portland Bicycle Tours ($5 for 1 hour) or Pedal Bike Tours ($8 for 1 hour) for low-cost rentals and fun guided rides throughout the city.

San Francisco
San Francisco is one of the most popular biking cities in the country. San Francisco is a compact city, with an extensive bicycle route system, most of which avoid the famous San Francisco hills. In fact, in the last five years the number of people biking in the city has increased by 71 percent. With over 200 miles of routes and more added all the time (17 miles of bike lanes just last year), plus plenty of bicycle parking racks, spaces, and garages, it’s no wonder that the bike-obsessed City by the Bay is so often explored on two wheels. What’s more, the year-round mild temperatures make for great biking weather (although watch out for winter rains). The best time for biking is on Sunday mornings for Sunday Streets events, when different neighborhood streets are closed to cars to encourage biking, walking, and free yoga and tai-chi group events. San Francisco also has a public bike-share program in the works that is set to launch in pilot form this summer (vendor still to be decided), so look out for the first of the SFMTA-provided bike rentals in the downtown area. San Francisco hopes to eventually have 500 bikes at 50 stations, plus 500 more bikes in other Bay Area cities.

Bikeable Miles
200+ miles of designated bike routes

Rent a Bike
A bike-share program is in the works, but for now you can rent bikes from Parkwide Bike Rentals and Tours, a service similar to a bike share but with rental locations in the city parks only. Visitors can pick up a bike in one park and drop it off in another, with rates starting at $14/hour.

Washington, DC
As the first major U.S. city to implement a bike-share program, Washington, D.C. is ideal for bikers. Even politicians making the trip from Capitol Hill to the White House can opt for pedal power thanks to new bike lanes on Pennsylvania Avenue. In recent years, the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) has created nearly 50 miles of new bike lanes and installed over 1,000 bike racks throughout the metropolitan area. Whether you’re commuting from the suburbs of Maryland or Virginia into downtown D.C., or a tourist who wants to cruise down the Mall and past the cherry blossoms, the nation’s capital has plenty of trails and bike lanes. Capital Bikeshare, the country’s first bike-share program, is open year-round, 24 hours a day, with 140 stations and over 1,200 bikes. People can make one-way bike trips without worrying about what to do with their bike on the next trip of their day. For those with either their own or rented bikes, Bikestation Washington D.C., located near Union Station, offers indoor bike parking facilities, restrooms and showers, lockers, bike repair stations, easy access to public transportation, and bike rentals.

Bikeable Miles
109 miles of trails, bike lanes, and cycle tracks

Rent a Bike
Visit the Capital Bikeshare website to search for bike kiosks before you travel – then pick up a bike and get going. After an initial membership fee ($7 for 24 hours or $15 for 3 days) it’s free for the first 30 minutes; rates start at $2 for one hour, and $6 for 90 minutes.

St. Petersburg
The Sunshine State isn’t generally known to be bike-friendly, but efforts are being made in certain cities to make two-wheeled transportation easier, safer, more frequent, and more fun. St. Petersburg’s relatively flat terrain, temperate climate, and great cycling infrastructure with plenty of trails and road facilities make it an excellent choice for visitors. St. Pete is striving to make the city better for biking all the time. Since 2006, it has been designated a bronze-level Bicycle Friendly City by the League of American Bicyclists, and have been working to raise their status, from providing more bike parking to connecting the recreational trails and street lanes. You can already enjoy the beautiful waterfront parks and beaches as well as the popular downtown shopping areas by bike, and with the coming myBike bike-share program (designed and funded by St. Pete residents, and based on NYC’s coming Social Bicycles technology), biking will be even easier for area visitors.

Bikeable Miles
35 miles of bike trails and 75 miles of on-street bike lanes

Rent a Bike
St. Pete’s bike-share program, myBike, is set to launch on July 4th with 500 bikes. In the meantime, you can rent from ABC Bicycles or its sister store, Trek Bicycle Store; rates start at $30/day for one bike or $25/day for two or more.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Peruvian Downhill Champion at 10,500 Feet


A little while ago, I did a series of posts about great (and dangerous!) mountain bike rides that were filmed with a camera-on-helmet kind of setup (see here). I loved those, and it seems like most of you also did, so I found a new series of videos by Peruvian downhill champion Alejandro Paz. They look best in full screen and when standing away from the screen.
If you liked those, make sure to also check out:
-Valparaiso Chile Urban Downhill Bike Video
For more on Paz: Alejandro Paz's Facebook page.
If you know of other great bike videos in this style, please post links in the comments below. Thanks!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Portland's Bike Share is Moving Forward


After some delays back in 2008, it's finally happening! BikePortland reports that the city of Portland has released Request for Proposals (RFP) to try to find an operator for its bike share program: "Bids on the project are due on May 25th and the City is expected to choose a vendor shortly thereafter. The system itself, the RFP says, is should be fully operational by April 2013 with a possible test of the system by this fall."

It seems like an ambitious bike-share project (which is how it should be):
Portland envisions implementing the most popular and highly utilized bike sharing system in the United States; one that catalyzes investment in public spaces and provides a low cost transportation solution for thousands of system users. Bike sharing stations should serve as a basis for place-making in the city, and applications that directly couple bike share stations with other uniquely "Portland" public benefits such as distribution of bicycle maps, provision of local food or drinks, bicycle helmet sales, ATMs or other enterprises that enhance the public space around bike share stations are highly encouraged.
The RFP mentions a first contract term of 5 years of operations.

For more details, check out the Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Via BikePortland

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

E-Bikes are Coming


Love at First Sight from PiMobility on Vimeo.
As I was walking into my building today, a gentleman was walking out with a folding electric bike. I asked him how he liked it and he said he loved it, even with its $1200 price tag. I would assume that we are going to see more of this with gas prices getting nearer to their July, 2008 high of $4.11. And the end of this particular uptick may not be over yet, as tensions with Iran and an improving economy are blamed for pushing prices up. (Robert Reich says its Wall Street speculation driving up prices.)

The price for a trip to fill the tank has risen 17% just in this year. (The increase is also spurring more support for oil drilling.) Somewhat ironically but also logically, prices for hybrid and high-MPG cars are also rising. The AAA has estimated that the cost of car ownership has climbed to more than $8,000 a year. That's enough to purchase between 3 and 4 electric bikes (the cost to charge an e-bike will vary by region but is estimated to be around $.20 per charging cycle, or, at a charging cycle each day, around $65 per year).

Obviously, an e-bike is not a mini-van, but when you see all the single-person cars out on the roads, you've got to wonder...why have sales of e-bikes lagged in the U.S.? Pike Research says the market for two-wheeled e-bikes should grow around 9 percent each year through 2016. However, in spite of sales outlets at places such as BestBuy, e-bikes in the U.S. just don't have an established channel. Small independent dealers are also out there, yet not able to have much media reach.

Sales in the U.S. are expected to be about 250,000 ebikes annually, far below Chinese and European sales. The range of pricing on e-bikes is very wide, from the $399 electric conversion kit from Currie Technologies to the $2,100 Giant Twist to the $5,669 Picycle (featured above).

What will it take to get you to switch to an e-bike?

Friday, March 16, 2012

Stopping Bike Thieves the Copenhagen Way

If you'd like to steal a bike—if you are not bothered by the moral ramifications of doing so—and you live somewhere crowded and urban like New York City, go ahead and do it. Statistically, you are almost certain to get away with it. Why? Nobody cares about other people's bikes, and nobody cares about bike thieves.

Here, Filmmaker Casey Neistat embarks on an experiment, stealing his own bike, loudly and obviously, in the light of day:

This video is old, but he just redid the experiment for the New York Times, with similar results.


I do not know what I would do if I saw someone hacking off a bike lock by a subway stop. Especially if he was large and muscular-looking. If he were smaller than I, perhaps I'd say "Hey man, what are you doing?" Perhaps I wouldn't. Of course if they said "I lost my key." How would I respond then? Do you press the issue further or let them be.

Of course, the goal should be a society without stolen bikes. And indeed, such a society exists! The great city of Copenhagen is known for its numerous number of bikes leaning on buildings, unlocked. You may see them just tossed over on the grass. Nobody really wants the bikes, it turns out, because everyone that wants one already has one. Or has access to one, through the city's bike-share system. No bike thief could make any serious money selling bikes. Besides, income equality was much greater in Denmark, and the have-nots were not nearly as destitute or desperate as those in a city like New York. The incentive for organized bike-stealing is simply not there.

Sure, bikes get stolen, sometimes, but that is mostly the work of drunk kids or jerks. This may be an oversimplification. But the general principle rings true: in a more equal society, and in one that takes pains to provide the services that a populace demands, thieving drops!

You can't fundamentally alter the crowd psychology of human beings, but we can try to make sure that everyone who wants a bike has access to one. We must Denmarkify our societies.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Picycle on Pi Day



Today is Pi Day! Pi Day was created to commemorate the mathematical constant π (pi), and it is celebrated today because March 14 is written as 3/14 in the month/day date format.
The Picycle was created by Tang Yau Hoong, and if you like it as much as I do, you can buy prints here. It's a must for math-geeks who also bike!

Monday, March 12, 2012

All-in-One Electric Bike Wheel Conversion



Converting your regular bike into an electric vehicle with the use of a conversion kit may be the easiest and least expensive way to go, without having to buy another dedicated bike. There's no shortage of kits out there, and the db-RevO from Taiwanese bike company DK City allows riders to make the transformation by simply replacing the front wheel.


The db-RevO comes in eight various colors (magenta, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, white and gray) and two sizes (20-inch and 26-inch), with the colored panel hiding the integrated DC motor, 24V lithium battery, and controller within. All you have to do is replace your front wheel, attach the wireless console to the handlebars and voilà! an electrically-powered bike.



The db-RevO retails for about $1,200, which is definitely on the more expensive end, but with it may be worth the ease of installation and the aesthetic plus of hiding all the parts in the wheel itself. Theft may be a problem though; you'd probably have to carry it with you or lock it safely somehow to prevent it from disappearing. Check out the website for more detailed specs and ordering.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

From the Netherlands to America: Translating the World’s Best Bikeway Designs


From the Netherlands to America: Translating the World's Best Bikeway Designs from Streetfilms on Vimeo.

The Netherlands is widely recognized for having the highest cycling rates in the world. What's not so well known is that the Dutch don't bike so much because cycling is in their DNA. They do it because after the country started down the path toward car dependence, they made a conscious decision to change course. After many decades of deliberate policy to invest in cycling as a mode of transportation, the Netherlands has the most advanced bike infrastructure you'll ever see.

Recently Streetfilms joined a group of city leaders from Chicago, Washington, DC and Miami on a study tour of the Netherlands, through the Bikes Belong Foundation's Bicycling Design Best Practices Program. The program shows American transportation professionals and policy makers real life examples of what it looks like to invest in cost-effective bicycle facilities. This video takes you on a tour of the incredibly well thought out street designs in the Netherlands. You'll see the infrastructure, hear from the experts on the ground, and watch the tour participants react and imagine how they might implement similar designs in American cities.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Top US Bike Advocacy Groups Set to Merge



Top three US bicycle advocacy groups plan merger to better cyclists' voice in Washington
Three of the most powerful bicycle advocacy groups in the US it could be the right number as they consider consolidation. Last month representatives from the Alliance for Biking & Walking, Bikes Belong, and the League of American Bicyclists met in San Diego to discuss the possibility of a merger.The key reasons for the groups to consolidate include: strength in membership numbers, reduced confusion over cycle advocacy issues, and presentation of a united message.
Advocacy leaders say the merger will give greater clout in washington:
This new united front could “rock the boat" and make things better as well. At present, each group is asking their respective supporters what they think they need to see. One point that each group makes clear is that questions won’t directly overlap much, as the three groups each have a very different membership base. The League has individual membership and a very large membership base, the Alliance has city and state bicycle and pedestrian advocacy groups, and Bikes Belong has manufacturers and retailers. This new group would provide a greater single voice, and it should noted that all three groups, along with IMBA, Adventure Cycling, and the Association for Pedestrian, and Bicycle Professionals have worked together before on America Bikes, a coalition that was formed to focus on federal bike funding.

Advocacy leaders say the merger will give greater clout in Washington. This merger is important because with all these groups there has been confusion, specifically on Capitol Hill. Anyone who drops into bike advocacy is hit with a sea of acronyms. The merger of the three groups could help streamline efforts,
thus the yet unnamed group will suddenly speak for the multiple voices.