17th Norman Conquest this Weekend

The 17th Norman Conquest ride will take place this Saturday staring at 7:30 AM from the J.D. McCarty Center at 2002 E Robinson St in Norman, OK. There are 10, 22, 46 and 64 mile routes (with lots of hills) and registration runs from $15-$35.  Money raised will go to support Camp ClapHans summer camp scholarship endowment fund which helps children with developmental disabilities to attend this great summer camp.  Full details can be found at: http://normanconquest.bicycleleague.com/

OU Faculty Senate Seeks LAB Bike Friendly Status

The faculty senate at OU wants to make the university truly bike friendly:

The senate eventually wants to see OU certified as a bicycle-friendly university by the League of American Bicyclists.

Both the Staff and Faculty Senate call for OU to be designated a bicycle-friendly university within the next five years, according to the resolutions.

via OUDaily.com | Faculty Senate calls for bicycling-friendly OU.

The university is planning to expand the limited path system on campus and installing additional bicycle racks.

Norman Earns LAB Bronze Level Bicycle Friendly Community Award

Norman becomes the second Bronze Level Bicycle Friendly Community in Oklahoma after Tulsa’s win in 2009.  The League of American Bicyclists website gives great praise to the efforts Norman has made to expand their cycling path and trail networks along with the recent passage of a three-foot passing rule:

Community Highlights:  Norman’s current Bicycle Advisory Committee has come a long way in the past decade to reinstitute old bike lanes while also extending the network with the addition of new lanes.  There is broad support for policies and programs suggested by the Bicycle Advisory Committee and from citizens and new ideas are always encouraged.The city hired an engineering firm to design the first phase of a 10 mile multi-modal path along State Highway 9 that will connect urban Norman to rural east Norman.  Norman puts a strong emphasis on keeping cyclists safe and educating its youth.  For example, Norman’s Public Schools participate annually in the International Walk and Bike to School Day. The city adopted a three foot passing law as a city ordinance so it can be enforced at a municipal court level.  The city sponsors Safety Town classes annually during the month of June for children under the age of six.  There are numerous bike clubs and groups, including youth and beginner, all the way up to road-racing teams that offer weekly group rides and annual road races and mountain bike trail competitions.

Compelling Accomplishment: This city has begun a pilot program in a few areas of town to demonstrate the need for and use of bike lanes in the city. This first phase of adding new bike lanes is being funded for its full amount ($55,216) by the city’s capital budget. After this stage, the city plans to pursue a Complete Streets policy and continue to expand the bicycle network beyond the existing 12 miles of paved shared us path and 18 miles of singletrack.

via League of American Bicyclists * Bicycle Friendly Community Campaign.

Unfortunately, Oklahoma as a state still ranks as 43 out 50 states according to the LAB rankings.  We fail in all categories measured except for a D in Enforcement and a C in Education and Encouragement.

Hit-and-Run Crash Near Norman

Sad news to mark my return to blogging, a man on a bicycle was struck from behind in a hit-and-run accident early Friday morning:

A hit-and-run incident left a Norman man seriously injured Friday, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol reported.

Troopers said Brian Dressler, 32, was struck from behind about 4 a.m. while riding his bicycle on the shoulder of the Interstate 35 bridge over the Canadian River in Cleveland County.

via Norman bicyclist was knocked off Canadian River bridge | NewsOK.com.

Dressler and his bike then fell 25 feet from the top of the bridge.  He was transported to Norman Regional Hospital where he was last listed as being in serious condition.  The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is asking anyone with information on this crash to contact them at 405-425-2323 or *55 on their cellphone.

While this is a clear-cut case of a hit-and-run crash, I am curious about what the rules are about cyclists being on Interstates?  Not that I ever want to ride on one . . .

Stolen Bicycle Alert: 2011 Black & White Specialized Roubaix

David M. has reported on several of the bicycle mailing lists that his 2011 Black and White Specialized Roubaix road bicycle has been stolen from the garage of his Norman home. It is 52cm and it’s serial number is: STAT210C0931.  Any information regarding this bike should be reported to the Norman Police Department at (405) 321-1600 under case #2010-16566.   Below is a example picture of the bike in question:

Norman Plans to Make City More Bicycle Friendly

A nice story on the various things going on in Norman to improve “bicycle friendliness”:

The Norman Bicycle Advisory Council hopes to combine federal funds for more bike lane striping with a local bike lane expansion project, which would include connecting south campus to the National Weather Center.

OU has a project in the works to make campus more bike-friendly, too.

The Norman campus is preparing an eight-month project, according to Jonathan Vann, UOSA Student Congress vice-chairman and Bicycle Ad Hoc Committee member. He said the project would create a bicycling route from the research campus to Jenkins Avenue and State Highway 9.

via OUDaily.com | More bike-friendly measures on horizon.

Norman Updates Bicycle Routes

192912800_cbd0339728 Norman is improving and expanding the bicycle routes throughout the city.  Hopefully Oklahoma City will start improving the street routes as well.  I’d love to see a route going down to Norman and out to Lake Thunderbird for a great camping weekend.

Yellow “Share the Road” signs to urge motorists and bicyclists to coexist peacefully and safely will be popping up around town as the city’s Bicycle Advisory Committee works to make roads safer for both.

Read the rest at: The Norman Transcript – City’s bicycle routes being updated

Photo By: Juan-Luis