Tag Archives: seattle

reBertha: What To Do With Our Very Large Hole

photo modified under Creative Commons. Original available on flickr from the WaDOT (http://www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/8260834957/in/set-72157631880763139)
As you’ve probably heard, our tortured tunneling titan, Bertha “the world’s largest and most expensive tunneling machine,” hasn’t moved in more than a month.

Armchair speculation says she’s likely over budget and certainly behind schedule.

I think it’s safe to say things are a mess.  Many of us alternative transportation nerds advocates have been against this mega project debacle since the beginning.  A mere $2.8B to move some cars at roughly the same speed and efficiency as if we tore down the doomed Alaska Way Viaduct and did nothing? “Sure that sounds like a great investment (air quotes over the great),” was my reaction all along.

Tweet: Bertha's Budget Busted

Nobody official wants to speak publicly about the growing quagmire, probably because the State and the contractor, Seattle Tunnel Partners, are busy lining up their litigation teams for the lawsuit(s) of the century.

Meanwhile the same state leaders glady supporting the motor-vehicle-only tunnel also think that investing in bike and transit infrastructure is too expensive and/or too socialist. Right….

So it’s tempting (oh so tempting!) to play I-told-you-so and draft an initiative to require all State Legislators to write suitably conciliatory, daisy-scented, “I’m sorry” notes to hero tunnel obstructionist/former Mayor McGuin.

Bertha's Junk. A creative commons photo from the Washington State Department of Transportation http://www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/11828410274/in/set-72157631880763139/lightbox/

Bertha’s Junk

As much as I’d like to see how a liberal Tim Eyeman-style effort would play out in Ephrata, we’re instead going to join the moral-high ground freshly shoveled in by Tom over at the Seattle Bike Blog. In a post Thursday morning entitled “We can do better things with our new downtown tunnel,” he’s calling for a positive spin to install on our sinking Titantic. Continue reading

Tree Hauling, Year 7: Kids Hauling Trees

Xtracycle Tree Hauling (year 7)
Happy Holidays! It’s time for our seventh-annual Christmas-tree hauling post. You’re probably bored of our tree-hauling exploits at this point. But it’s a tradition so we’re sharing anyway!

Last year our friend, Charlotte, suggested that the kids need to start hauling the tree. And since our daughter now fits Anne’s bikes, Tim floated the idea by her a couple of weeks ago. As a new 13 year old, she’s lukewarm about even riding bikes, let alone hauling trees on bikes in public, where, you know, like, her friends and, like, the whole world might see her!

So we weren’t surprised then with her less-than-enthusiastic response.

Continue reading

9 to 5: Register Now for the All-Night Bike Scavenger Hunt

Go ahead and register, you know you want to. It’s the most fun you’ll have on a bike in the middle-of-the-night all year, I guarantee it. Continue reading

Xtracycle Reader (the video)

Xtracycle readerBy now you know that the Car Free Days family isn’t always prompt about posting to our blog. We have the very best intentions to keep it from getting old and moldy, but often life gets in the way and we push those blog updates aside.

We’ve officially taken procrastination to new heights. I’m more than a little bit ashamed to admit that this video edit is almost 4-years in the making: we’ve been saving this un-edited footage since August 2008. I started to edit it a few times but I just never got around to finishing it (kinda like Tim’s plan to finish his kid bike series). Continue reading

Talk about Walk & Bike to School programs Thurs!

Walk.Bike.Schools!
Walk.Bike.Schools! is a blog,  meeting (7pm Thursday @ Bryant Elementary library) and (hopefully) a movement to support and encourage parents and kids walking and biking to school.

Our mission (though calling it such seems a little grand right now) is to build a network of parents, neighbors, members of school communities, and yes, students, who can share ideas and energy around the goal of encouraging more kids and families to bike to school—at least some of the time.

Our loose group of ~6-8 parents has been reasonably successful—Bryant won SDOT’s Golden Shoe award for the largest number of students regularly arriving on foot or bike last year. But we know things could be so much better if we could tap into the collective intelligence of other bike and walk programs in our city and learn what as worked (and not worked) elsewhere. Continue reading

Seattle Neighborhood Greenways Action is Afoot (and a-Bicycle, for that matter)

(edit:I’ve been told that a shared definition of a Neighborhood Greenway would be helpful for some readers. We’re working toward  our “ideal vision” but in the meantime check out the “What is a neighborhood Greenway” section in this post by Sally Bagshaw for the basics. -Tim)

The Carfreedays family is jumping into the hotbed of Seattle Greenways grass-roots activism and joining up with our neighbors in NE Seattle on the NE Greenways project!

Greenways fit with the kind of riding we do (parent and kid-powered transportation), and c0uld really be the key resource for making it safer and easier for kids all over this city to skip the minivan and ride bikes or walk to school!

Bike Train to Bryant ElementaryWe don’t claim to be Greenways experts but we have some strong feelings, nonetheless. We’ve been riding around Seattle for longer than we’d like to admit. We know this city pretty well. We know the terrain and the people and the baggage that comes with both. And we’ve been avidly riding the streets of PDX on visits for the past five years or so. We aren’t Stumptown natives by any stretch, but we have more than a passing familiarity of what it feels like to ride the Green Streets of our fair neighbor. Continue reading

Fall Basket = Smiles

Fall Leaves

I followed a cyclist down Eastlake the other day. We yo yoed for a few miles as we both climbed and descended all the hills heading North. He passed me, I caught up, he pulled way ahead, I caught up again.

The only reason he kept getting so far ahead of me is he was running red lights. As in, not–even–a–question the light was red, it was R E D. Continue reading

Weekend Bike(tastic) Events

Julian posted details for November Kidical Mass over at Totcycle. The ride includes the opening of the Ship Canal Trail and ends at Fremont Brewing.

What’s not to like about that route? Continue reading

Soccer Mom, Hold the Mini-Van

Soccer without a car question from TwitterCan a kid participate in soccer if their family doesn’t own a car?

Tim and Maddie had a conversation about that very subject on Twitter today…she was surprised to learn that our kids play soccer and we don’t have a car. (She knew about the car part, she just didn’t know about soccer). Continue reading

Val’s Memorial Ride and Wake (Labor Day cargo bike ride)

Gathering at 2020 Cycles

Val (in the hat) at the start of 2008 Labor Day ride at 20/20 Cycle

As many of you know, Val Kleitz was a driving force for the Seattle holiday cargo bike rides. For us, he was the spirit of cargo bikes in general. So it’s quite fitting that this year’s Labor Day cargo ride is honoring Val as a memorial ride.

The Labor Day ride traditionally runs (very roughly) from 20/20 Cycle on Union  St. to Cowen Park in Ravenna. Plan on a slow, cargo-and-kid-friendly pace. Make sure you carry enough in the way of food, beverages, and picnic supplies. Just in case!

We’re hoping to see a lot local riders and family cyclists showing support for Val’s memory, as well as enjoying some transportation cycling on a lovely day.  As always, a cargo bike is Not Required (If you are hauling yourself, you’re hauling a load!). So come on out and join the pallet.

Details: Meet at 20/20 cycles (2020 East Union) noon Monday. The Pallet leaves at 1:00 and should take about 90 minutes to arrive at the Cowen/Ravenna park picnic shelter. Later Monday night is a wake for Val at Pike Brewery.

More details about both events here….

See you there!

-Tim & Anne