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LEBANON VALLEY BICYCLE COALITION is a 501c-3 organization founded in  2008 to make the Lebanon Valley region of Pennsylvania, a better, safer place to bicycle. We work with elected officials and municipal, county and state governments to make certain that new road projects or redesigns consider the needs of bicyclists. We want cyclists to have the necessary skills to be able to bicycle for their transportation, recreation and health. We offer bike rides because we enjoy cycling together. We need you to strengthen our efforts. With your help, we can be more successful. Become a Member or Supporter and especially volunteer your enthusiasm, skills and knowledge. Membership and Supporter Forms can be found in the GET INVOLVED Menu.

Tour de Lebanon Valley – May 30th

 

          

 

 

Lebanon Valley Volunteers in Medicine Free Health Clinic asked LVBC to join with them to organize a bicycle fundraiser event.   Our partnership has resulted in Tour de Lebanon Valley, www.tourdelebanonvalley.org.  LVBC members will receive a $10 discount if they have become members by April 30th.   Volunteer to help, register to ride, and encourage others to participate in this event.  Your suggestions and ideas are important.  Contact Ron Birch at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to share your ideas and to volunteer.  

Ride of Silence Sponsored by LVBC

 The annual Ride of Silence was held on May 20th.  Participants remembered the five cyclists who were killed in south central Pennsylvania in 2014 - Jonathan Currier, David Wilson, Donald Brown, Arthur Garzon, Roseanna Newswanger- as well as Paul Ziegler.   Paul, a McPherson College student, was killed by a distracted, young driver in 2012 while he was cycling on a road near his college in Kansas.  His Uncle annually joins the Ride of Silence to remember his nephew.   Amazing Grace was bagpiped by two members of the Quitpahilla Highlanders  as the cyclists travelled through Annville.

 

 

Helmet Cameras and Close Call Database Link 

 

Someone whose work  includes collecting bicyclist/motor vehicle  crash data provided the following link to a CNN news story which, in turn, provides a link to a Close Call Database.  http://www.cnn.com/2015/05/13/living/feat-bike-helmet-cameras/index.html   A helmet camera “caught” the crash in 2014 when a cycling friend was struck in Manheim by a motorist who turned into her.

 

 

 

 

 

LVBC Bike Rodeo – a Partnership with the  YMCA & Lebanon City Police

  

 

 

LVBC partnered with the YMCA and the Lebanon Police Department to hold a bike rodeo for youth.   Senator Mike Folmer and Lebanon City Council Chairman Wiley Parker helped to educate parents and their children.  First Aid & Safety Patrol  attended throughout and Safe Kids Lebanon County’s Jill Shoemaker assisted with the fitting of bike helmets along with Ruth Ann Fenton and Chinese visiting teacher Yan Yan.  Jane Brewer and Juliet Waldron registered the participants; Chris Waldron used his skills to undertake a “cascade” of bicycle repairs.  Chris Shelly was tasked to lay out the skills course with the Y’s Darin Pickles. Michael Kamumba, a recent HAAC graduate who is from Kenya, quizzed the youth on bicycle safety by using the bike wheel  spin exercise built by Barry Yiengst.  Ruth Barley led a short bike ride after the education session.   Estelle Ruppert organized the event.  Volunteers and parents told us that bicycling skills and knowing the traffic laws should be taught City-wide.   If you will help to plan future bicycle education events, please contact Estelle -This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..   As you can tell from this event, LVBC is dependent on partnerships and both members and non members.

 

LVBC Participates in Designing the Roundabouts on SR 322

  

 

 

 

 

When we learned, by chance, in February  that Milton Hershey School’s proposed roundabouts were not going to provide facilities for bicyclists and pedestrians, the Board and members took action.  Chris Shelly became our “lead”  and armed with the AASHTO bicycle facilities recommendations as well as Alta Planning’s design recommendations, he spoke at the  public meeting as did Board member Juliet Waldron.   We then engaged in a campaign to advise Derry Township, MHS, and Penn DOT 8-0 that we expected the designs to include bike/ped.    Every advocate who participated in this campaign helped greatly. Chris, Juliet and Pat spoke at the Derry Township Supervisors meeting.  The county bicycle transportation maps proved to be very important in making the case for bicycle facilities; SR 322 is a Bicycle Regional Road.   Penn DOT told MHS and Derry Township that bike/ped facilities were required, and they advised that Chris Shelly should participate in the re-design that will include bike/ped facilities.  Chris presented what has transpired to date at a joint meeting of the Hershey Area Walk & Roll group and LVBC Board of Directors.  The Board supports what has been included for bike/ped.  However, Chris and the Board will continue to make the case for a pedestrian crossing with bicycle access at the east side of the roundabout at Meadow Lane.  This advocacy effort has been and continues to be a challenging responsibility.   Penn DOT makes the final determinations as to what is required for the HOP (highway occupancy permit).  More information will be forthcoming.

LVBC’s Earn a Bike Project Starts with Success 
 

The Earn a Bike program was initiated by Scott Shreve with the assistance of Michael Gilmartin, Fred Richter and Ross Willard from Recycle Bicycle of Harrisburg. Five Rescue Mission participants fixed up and “earned” their bikes while a number of others had their own bikes which needed to be made “ride-able”.   The next session will be held on a Saturday in June. Please offer your help by contacting Scott at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.%20">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 717-949-2972. 

 

Electric-assist Bicycles are Legal

 

Electric-assist bicycles are now legal in Pennsylvania.  The definition for an electric-assist bicycle is that it must have operable pedals, a motor rated at no more than 750 watts (1 hp.), weigh no more than 100 pounds with a speed limit of 20 mph under power.  The bicyclist must be at least 16 years old.    What will be the impact of these bicycles for transportation?  If you ride an electric assist bicycle, share your experiences by contacting This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Click here to go to a Bicycling magazine article on how to turn any bike into electric assist.

   

Advocating for safer bicycling (and walking) on Lingle Avenue 

Bicyclists depend on Lingle Avenue to reach many destinations such as connecting to Hersheypark Drive, the Northside Shopping Center and the elementary school.   Also, many bicyclists reside close by Lingle Avenue and must use Lingle.    LVBC prepared a document to explain and illustrate the unsafe conditions and presented this at the June Policy Board meeting of LEBCO MPO.  Read the document by clicking here.   Your assistance in helping us to  get Penn DOT to fix some of the conditions soon can make a difference.  Tell us why you use Lingle Avenue.   If you live in North Londonderry Township, Palmyra, or South Londonderry Township, ask your elected officials to help get action.

 

LVBC Response and Recommendations  to the 2015-2040  LRTP & TIP for Lebanon County’s Comprehensive Transportation System

Due to a very condensed time period to review and make recommendations to the LRTP (Long Range Transportation Plan) and TIP (Transportation Improvement Program) that covers  the next 25 years, LVBC Executive Board and our non voting representative on the Technical Planning Committee have prepared and approved a response.  It can be read here.     The packet includes the FHWA documents on planning for bicycling as a mode of transportation, federal recommendations for the use of CMAQ funds and  past requests that LVBC has made since 2010.   The TIP/LRTP can be revised during the 25 year span.  However, with the increased funding provided by Act 89, the state  transportation bill,  that bicyclists and bicycle advocacy organizations  worked diligently to get passed by the legislature, the time is now when bicycling and walking, should be clearly shown to be part of the comprehensive transportation system of Lebanon County in the MPOs’ Action items and on the Transportation Improvement Program for 2015-2018.  

 

The Lebanon County Long Range Transportation Plan, 2015-2040: Where is Bicycling? 

 

In June, 2014, the Lebanon County Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Policy Board adopted a transportation plan for all modes of transportation for the next 25 years.  The LVBC Board is very disappointed that many of our concerns and recommendations were not accepted.   Twenty five years, we believe, is a long period of time without having a bicycle transportation plan for the County.   If you take the time to skim through the Plan, you will find sections where LVBC has had some impact, but for those of us who have tried to be persuasive since 2008, the results are minimal.  The Plan is at this link,  http://www.lebcounty.org/Planning/Pages/MPO.aspx.   Scroll down.     If you live in Lebanon County, your assistance is needed in advising our MPO of the importance of having a plan for bicycling that can gradually be implemented over 25 years.  If you are willing to help in this campaign, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  Thanks to the Members who have committed their personal funds to help pay for such a plan.

The League’s  American Bicyclist Magazines  are a Valuable Resource

  If you are not a member of the League, you can still read their magazine, American Bicyclist.   The publication provides much information including plenty of examples of what is happening for cyclists in the USA and sometimes much father away. 

What you learn may be very “transferable” to Lebanon County no matter which of the 5 Es, Engineering, Education, Enforcement, Encouragement or Equity, is the topic.  Go to http://bikeleague.org/americanbicyclist.  The latest issue is not immediately posted on their website.

 

 

Complete Streets is a Policy Adopted by Lancaster County 

 

In 2014, the Lancaster County MPO adopted a Complete Streets policy.  Municipalities in the County are being educated on what Complete Streets is and encouraged to adopt this policy. The most recent Planning Department Director’s newsletter includes an update on Complete Streets as well as promotes bicycling.

http://www.lancastercountyplanning.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/190 . Lancaster County has also published the Lancaster County Complete Streets Design Guidebook which can be accessed at

http://www.lancastercountyplanning.org/179/Implementation-Tools-for-Complete-Street   This is a detailed publication and, if utilized by municipalities, can assure implementation of better, safer bicycling facilities.

 

 

 

 What Can We Learn from Other Counties? 

 

Arlington County, Virginia,  understands the importance of developing a “bike culture”.   Several years ago they started a Bike Culture Forum that brings together people who belong to varied organizations and understand what the value of a bicycle-able county can do for businesses, residents, commuters and visitors.  While the Lebanon Valley is not Arlington, we can learn from their efforts and  from the video that Arlington County produced,   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mU0oRC_gxys.   This video includes educating school children, building amazing infrastructure for cyclists, promoting bike to work, bike share and more.   Take 30 minutes to watch, listen and then offer your ideas. Read about the start up of the bike culture initiative:   http://www.bikearlington.com/pages/news-events/blog/2012-arlington-bike-culture-forum-recap/

 

 

 USING HEADLIGHTS DURING THE DAY 

 

Five bicyclists were killed in crashes with motorists in our region in 2014; there were also seriously injured cyclists.  Four of the fatal crashes happened in full daylight.   The crash in late November which resulted in the cyclist’s death was a result of a motorist who turned left into the cyclist.  Without the advantage of having the reports done by law enforcement, we can only surmise what were all the factors that caused these crashes.   While discussing the November fatal crash, a Manheim Township officer advised that bicyclists should  be as visible as possible in daylight as well as night.  He encouraged the use of strobe headlights.  LVBC’s President has conversed with several  bicyclists who routinely use daytime headlights.   Two of these cyclists have commuted to and from work for many years.   Another member observed a touring cycling club from Ohio and they all used daytime headlights.  They were very visible.  One member noted that we should promote the use of a light with a flash mode and that the light be rated at at least 600 lumens in the flash mode.  He also uses other lights including having them on his wheels as well as reflective clothing.  He notes “If you can’t see me at night you’re blind!   On a mtbr forum in 2012, a member said “In times past just wearing bright clothing was thought to be enough. Like you, I believe times have changed. We need more...we need something that metaphorically reaches out and slaps the distracted driver in the face.   Yeah, it will make me feel like a moron using lights during the day but it's better to be a LIVE SPECTACLE than a dead fool. “    This link, http://bicycles.stackexchange.com/questions/23307/does-it-make-you-safer-to-use-lights-during-the-day, may be useful in your making a decision to use day time running lights. LVBC is not endorsing a specific product or brand,  and there are many from which to choose.   The photograph is from our 2010  Ride of Silence on SR 422. 

Lebanon County Bicycle Transportation Priorities Map

The Priorities Map depicts which state  roads need immediate improvements.  The Map also identifies where signage, Bikes May Use Full Lane and Begin Right Turn, Yield to Bikes, should be installed.  There are recommendations for shared lane markings (sharrows).   You can access the Map by clicking here. 

 

LVBC MEMBERS IN ACTION

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“Whoever invented the bicycle deserves the thanks of humanity.”
Lord Charles Beresford

SCENIC BICYCLING VISTAS IN THE VALLEY

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