Saskatoon Cycles September 2020 Newsletter
In Memory of Cathy Watts
Cathy Watts, our late long-time chairperson and Saskatoon’s premier cycling advocate, continues to have an impact on cycling in this city! We have received close to 40 donations in her memory, worth close to $3,000. We will be sending thank you messages to everyone who gave money to Saskatoon Cycles in Cathy’s name. We are also providing your tributes and kind words made in her memory to her husband Trent and family. Saskatoon Cycles has received suggestions for how we might create a lasting tribute in her memory, which our Board is considering. Stay tuned for more details.
For those who have not had a chance to read Cathy’s obituary, here is the message she left us with:
If you are reading this, I’m no longer here. I recently had a very bad stroke. It robbed me of my body but not my spirit and as usual I got what I wanted; to leave on my own terms, to say goodbye to my family and friends and then to quietly slip away in peace at home. During my last few days, I was so thrilled when all of you rode your bikes past my bedroom window on a slow roll. A lot of you said you were so sad about this. Well golly, get over it. My father always said nobody promised fair. But I have been so lucky; my life has been beyond my wildest dreams. And you know that’s saying a lot for an impossible dreamer like me. Let me tell you why. Read the full post
Thank you, Cathy. You will forever be in our hearts and minds. An inspiration to all of us.
Saskatoon Cycles 2020 Annual General Meeting and Call for Nominations
Mark your calendar! The Saskatoon Cycles Annual General Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday November 10th, 2020. Details to follow.
Have a passion for cycling? Want to make Saskatoon a better place to live and ride? We are looking for Board members. If you are interested, contact the Nominating Committee at email@example.com.
Where do you think the City should develop a permanent site for outdoor festivals?
The City of Saskatoon is seeking public input on where best to develop a permanent site for outdoor festivals. Through a feasibility study, they have identified three potential locations. Citizens have a chance to weigh in on the following questions: 1) Which of the three sites do you prefer and why? 2) What should be the criteria for an ideal permanent outdoor festival site? And, 3) What program elements and features would you want to see? Saskatoon Cycles is encouraging planners to include space for a temporary, fenced bike valet parking area that could be set up for each festival. Click here for more information about the permanent festival site and to complete the public survey.
Vote in November 9th civic election
Our next municipal election is just around the corner. Use your vote to support the candidates you feel will help ensure Saskatoon is a great place to life and ride. In this election Saskatoon Cycles will once again be supporting the good work of Liveable YXE, an advocacy campaign designed to help voters make an informed choice on election day — by promoting candidates’ positions on issues that contribute to the “liveability” of Saskatoon. From their website: “A liveable city is one that contributes significantly to a positive quality of life for its citizens. The more liveable a city is, the more choices and freedoms are available to a more diverse range of people. A liveable city is active, attractive, vibrant, accessible, walkable, green, healthy, diverse, and above all, people-friendly.” Saskatoon Cycles will be contributing to the survey of candidates running for mayor and city council.
City of Saskatoon Neighbourhood Bikeways Project
The City has identified five corridors where it wants to develop neighbourhood bikeways to improve safety for pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists:
- Dudley Street;
- 29th St and 31st St;
- 14th St;
- Victoria Ave; and,
- 3rd Ave.
It is engaging with citizens virtually to present the neighbourhood bike designs; communicate how previous public input informed the designs; collect public feedback on the designs to help prioritize the projects; and summarize public feedback on the designs for the final report to City Council. Thus far, the city has hosted online consultations about proposed designs for Dudley Street, 29th St and 31st St, and 14th St. Dates for consultation sessions about Victoria Avenue and 3rd Avenue have not been set. There’s an information page on the City’s website, with videos about the proposed designs for the five corridors, plus videos of the three online sessions held so far. People can leave comments on the page, or follow up by email, telephone, or regular mail.
Switching Gears Bike Radio
Local cyclist Tyler Rittinger hosts a great radio show Thursdays at 6:30 pm on CFCR 90.5 FM covering anything cycling related in and around Saskatoon. Topics have included: Walking, Biking and Tactical Urbanism as a Response to Covid 19; Girls on Bikes; The Local Bike Shop; Why I Ride; Letting Go – Kids, Independence and Adventure; and most recently, A sound collage of tributes to local Cycling Advocate Cathy Watts. Previous episodes are available here.
Bridge City Bicycle Coop forced to adjust operations in response to pandemic
For the staff and volunteers at Saskatoon’s Bridge City Bicycle Coop, working side by side with people helping them build a bike of their own and teaching riders how to keep their steeds in good running order is what they do. So the arrival of COVID-19 in mid-March threw a major wrench into their operations just as they were moving into their busiest time of year. Most springs and summers, the BCBC weekly schedule is jam packed: Monday night, women and queers; Tuesday, general open shop; Wednesday, youth build-a-bike workshops; Saturdays, open workshop. But when COVID hit, the Coop was forced to shut down completely. “Nobody was in the building, bikes weren’t being repaired or restored,” says BCBC co-chair Bill Henley. Read the full post
Winter’s Coming. Will Canada’s Pandemic Bicycle Boom Last? (New York Times)
The question now is, will this enthusiasm for cycling survive winter and the post-pandemic period? To get some sense of what’s to come and how cities might keep cycling fever going, I spoke with Beth Savan, a senior lecturer and adjunct professor in the geography and planning department of the University of Toronto. Dr. Savan was the main investigator in a study published last year by researchers at her university, along with others at McGill University and Simon Fraser University, about how to increase cycling in Canada. Read the full article