Galway Cycling Campaign and Why Not? Adventure Film Festival present “A night of Cycling Shorts”

A Night of Cycling Shorts

Bike-Film-Night-Poster

Galway Cycling Campaign and Why Not? Adventure Film Festival will present “A Night of Cycling Shorts” in Kelly’s Bar, Bridge Street on Wednesday June 18th at 7.30 pm as part of National Bike Week. The event will showcase the best of Irish and International Bicycle Cinema as up to 2 hours of short films will be screened to celebrate cycling culture.

The selection on the night will feature a diverse, exhilarating and award winning mixture of short films covering topics such as bicycle social entrepreneurship, underground unicycling, epic mountain biking adventuring and a land speed record attempt. & yes, that last sentence did includes the words underground unicycling! The night will also see the screening of the Irish premiere of the 2013 International Cycling Film Festival winner.

There will also be spot prizes and surprises on the night.

The event is free and doors open at 7:00 pm. For more updates “like” the Why Not? Adventure Film Festival and Galway Cycling Campaign Facebook pages and follow the websites: www.galwaycycling.org and www.whynotadventurefilmfestival.com

Where: Kelly’s Pub (upstairs), Bridge St, Galway City

When: Wednesday June 18th. Doors open at 7pm. Films kick off at 7:30pm

Ticket Price: FREE ENTRY. Limited seating.  First come, first served.

A new bicycle commuting service comes to Galway

A new bicycle commuting service is coming to Galway during National Bike Week. For two days of National Bike Week, Monday 16 June and Wednesday 18 June (National Cycle to Work Day) the BikeBus will provide adult cyclists in Galway with the opportunity to commute to work with other cyclists.

A BikeBus is a collective form of bicycle commuting where a group of cyclists follow a set route and timetable, “picking up” and “dropping off” “passengers” along the way. A BikeBus provides those new to bicycle commuting with a perfect opportunity to commute to work alongside experienced cyclists. The BikeBus also welcomes experienced cycling commuters who may fancy a more convivial ride for the week that is in it. The BikeBus is a fun, healthy and sociable way to get to and from work. We’ve put together a set of FAQs for BikeBus.

The Galway BikeBus will travel from the Knocknacarra Community Centre to the Parkmore Business Park in the morning and return in the evening. The BikeBus will pass by major employers and industrial hubs such as Galway University Hospital, NUIG, Liosban Industrial Estate, Mervue Business Park, Ballybrit Business Park, Briarhill Business Park and Parkmore Business Park. See the maps for the routes at: Galway BikeBus Morning Route (Cappagh Road to Parkmore) and Galway BikeBus Evening Route (Parkmore to Cappagh Road). You can also download the timetable as a PDF (5 Mb)

Make sure you check the route map and timetable below to “catch” the BikeBus. Email info@galwaycycling.org to let us know if you want to “get on board”.

Don’t cycle on the footpath: Obvious, right?

Adults cycling on footpaths is an issue that annoys, threatens, intimidates and upsets a lot of pedestrians. While some cycle in a restrained manner, others cycle on footpaths in wholly obnoxious and selfish manner that destroys public sympathy for cycling and cycling promotion. In the Galway Cycling Campaign we’re fully aware of this and we hold the firm position that the footway is no place for an adult cyclist (we don’t hold a hard view on children cycling on footpaths).

As it happens our national body, Cyclist.ie, favours the consideration of German type traffic laws that allow for children cycling on footpaths.  With adults, much footpath cycling is percieved to be a reaction to hostile road conditions rather than simply wilful lawbreaking. The solution for adults is to acknowledge the problems footpath cycling can create and work to ensure that cyclists have access to a roads network that recognises their needs as roads users.

We’re happy to see the law on footpath cycling enforced by An Garda Síochána as part of a range of enforcement measures needed to create a more people-friendly city.

We advocate our position to fellow cyclists and we raise the issue when talking to engineers and designers of infrastructure. One of our concerns on the Seamus Quirke Road fiasco is that the design of the off-road cycleways puts cyclists into conflict with pedestrians. It is an approach that the city council want to continue in future schemes. We believe that the law informs our position. Here’s the legislative background to this.
1. A bicycle is a vehicle under Irish Road Traffic legislation.

ROAD TRAFFIC ACT, 1961.

Refer to Section 3, Interpretation:
(I’ve re-ordered the definitions from alphabetical)
pedal bicycle” means a bicycle which is intended or adapted for propulsion solely by the physical exertions of a person or persons seated thereon;
pedal cycle” means a vehicle which is a pedal bicycle or pedal tricycle;
driving” includes managing and controlling and, in relation to a bicycle or tricycle, riding, and “driver” and other cognate words shall be construed accordingly;
footway” means that portion of any road which is provided primarily for the use of pedestrians;

These are important definitions, the first three relate to the cyclist and their bicycle and how they are viewed as a driver and a vehicle respectively i.e. the law applies to them in a similar manner to those applying to a motor driver and a motor vehicle except where stated otherwise. The last relates to what we typically refer to as a footpath; a footway.

2. The next important piece of legislation handles driving on a footway

S.I. No. 182/1997 — Road Traffic (Traffic and Parking) Regulations, 1997

Refer to Section 13, Driving on Footway:
13. (1) Subject to sub-articles (2) and (3), a vehicle shall not be driven along or across a footway.
(2) Sub-article (1) does not apply to a vehicle being driven for the purpose of access to or egress from a place adjacent to the footway.
(3) A reference in sub-article (1) to driving along or across a footway, includes s reference to driving wholly or partly along or across a footway.

(N.B. The interpretation section of this S.I. references the 1961 Act)

 

You would think that this position wouldn’t be questioned by anyone other than those adult cyclists who insist on cycling on footways. Unfortunately you’d be wrong: Galway City Council’s officials oppose our position. They hold a stated and repeated position that it’s not accurate to say it’s illegal to cycle on the footpath. Incredible, isn’t it. Bear in mind that this is also the council who brought you the infamous Doughiska Road cycle lane abomination.

This is now a particularly important issue because of the Walking and Cycling Strategy for Galway City and Environs which is under review by Galway City Council officials and elected councillors. To avoid inappropriate cycling infrastructure being designed we want a clear an unequivocal recognition in the strategy document that cycling on the footpath is illegal:

Under Irish law a bicycle is a vehicle, a cyclist is a driver and cyclists are considered to be traffic. Recognising this, the strategy affirms that the default assumption will be to provide for cyclists on the same carriageway surface as other vehicles.  The council will work to ensure that cyclists have on-road solutions on all roads in the city. Equally the legal status of cycles means that it is illegal to cycle on footways.

Galway City Council’s officials don’t want this. They can defend their own position on this but they argue accepting this point may prevent future infrastructure schemes like the Dangan Greenway that are shared use for pedestrians and cyclists. It doesn’t, other local authorities have shown themselves capable of dealing with this issue and creating facilities like the proposed greenways. What it does stop is poorly conceived off-road cycle facilities that put cyclists and pedestrians in conflict and cyclists at risk. At a meeting with city council officials and the transport sub-commitee (which has Galway Cycling Campaign representation) the illegality of cycling on the footpath became a sticking point and a decision was made that councillors would vote on the issue. The vote was in favour of the position that cycling on the footpath is illegal. The strategy is up for review again by councillors and when sending it to them for review, Galway City Council officials included the following in the covering letter: Ciaran Hayes letter to councillors 20120704

This letter uses a bullying tactic which is now favoured by Galway City Council officals when dealing with stubborn councillors; if you don’t vote for this we’ll lose the funding. This tactic has been used frequently to push through poorly conceived infrastructure schemes. It’s an affront to the democractic structures of local government and is an obscene use of our taxes. Schemes which are a waste of money and serve no road user (motorist, cyclist or pedestrian) get built simply to serve the egoes and CV building exercises of city council officials.

The Road Traffic Acts are clear; it’s illegal to cycle on the footpath. We want that recognised by councillors in the face of bullying by city officials.

Cycling Campaign Launches Smarter Travel Project with Calendar

The Galway Cycling Campaign has launched its Smarter Travel funded Image of Cycling in Galway project with a high-quality calendar celebrating cycling in Galway city and county. Launching the calendar, city mayor Michael Crowe said, “Anyone in business knows the necessity for good marketing; the business of promoting cycling is no different. With these calendars, Galway has again showcased the grassroots talent that makes Galway an icon for other Irish cities.”

Composed of stunning photographs by up-and-coming talents Chris Tierney and Peter Fedrizzi, the calendars cover all aspects of cycling in Galway and the cyclists who make up all facets of life in Galway city and county. There are cycling teachers, cycling college lecturers, and the smiling children at Galway’s annual Bike Week Treasure Hunt. The amazing success of the Green Schools Travel program is epitomised in a photo of the children of Eagles Nest national school in Renvyle tearing down a local beach on their bikes. There are stories of how cycling helped people overcome adversity, such as Liam Cullinane, who was able to regain his independence after a severe bout of meningitis, and local hurling star Dave Collins, who cycled back to fitness after a catastrophic injury on the pitch.

There is a cycling Garda and a bus driver who cycles to work every day. The arts are featured, with Páraic Breathnach relating the story of his first bike, and Natalia Surina, a harper whose bike is her first choice in transport. The sport of cycling is celebrated with local champion Sadhbh Baxter of the West Coast Wheelers. The grass roots of cycling activism in Galway is also captured in the monthly Critical Mass bike rides, with balloon-festooned cyclists flying the flag for fun (and politics with a small p)!

The calendars are just one aspect of a larger €28,000 Image of Cycling in Galway project co-ordinated by Justyna Kocjan on behalf of the Galway Cycling Campaign. As part of the project, a unified brand and logo for cycling in Galway has been developed by graphic designers Simon Fleming and Alexa Mottram under the catchphrase “Treibheanna ar Rothair” (“Tribes on Bikes”) and will be promoted via various promotional items across the city and county.

The calendars are freely available in bike shops, outdoors shops, Green Schools, Charlie Byrne’s bookshop, Galway City Council, Galway Transportation Unit, HSE Health Promotion, NUIG, and GMIT, and can also be requested by emailing info@galwaycycling.org.

For more information, visit our websites:
www.galwaycycling.org
www.tribesonbikes.ie

ENDS

Notes for journalists

Galway Cycling Campaign:
Formed after a large public meeting in 1998, the Galway Cycling Campaign works to promote cycling as a healthy, convenient and accessible form of transport in Galway city and county. The €28,000-funded “Image of Cycling in Galway” is just one of a number of projects the Cycling Campaign is involved with to promote Galway as Ireland’s Cycling City. Working with the Chamber of Commerce, the campaign has also obtained Smarter Travel projects funding of €400,000 for bike parking at city businesses and €8,000 to train and support Workplace Cycle Champions at offices and factories. Other activities include the annual Bicycle Treasure hunt for the city’s younger cyclists and the Faster by Bike in Galway project (co-funded by the City Council and the HSE), which puts signs up on traffic lights with safety messages, indicating typical cycling times to key destinations. The Cycling Campaign also produces cycle skills leaflets that are now being reproduced in Waterford and Dublin.

Photography:
© Christopher Tierney
www.chrisdidthis.com
christopher.tierney@gmail.com

© Peter Fedrizzi
www.peterfedrizzi.com
fedrizziphotography@gmail.com

Logo design:
Alexa Mottram
alexamottram@gmail.com

Simon Fleming
www.simonfleming.ca
contact@simonfleming.ca

Text editing:
Stan Carey
www.stancarey.com
stan@stancarey.com

Irish text translation and editing:
Gearóid Ó Casaide
Liam Ó hAisibéil

Website design:
James Gallagher

October Meeting

It’s been awhile since our last meeting so we would like to let you know what’s going on and hearing about how you would like to get involved. Thanks to the 091 Labs space we’re going to be having our next meeting at their place (see: http://091labs.com/contact/ for details). Entry is via the side of the building (where you turn towards the Radisson Hotel) and  you can bring your bike inside. The space has a small tuck shop: Tea/Coffee/soft drinks and sometimes chocolate on sale, just throw the money in the tin by the kettle.
On the agenda for this meeting, along with anything you would like to talk about, is:
  • Engagement with city officials and city councillors; catch up on the Seamus Quirke Road scheme and City Development Plan.
  • Traffic light signs – Signs are collected and the cable ties bought we need to get wood for the mountings and then get it dome
  • Cycling Champions in workplaces
  • Image of Cycling project.
  • Quick report on national events.
We’d love to see you all, so please come by.
(The image used in this post is by Richard Gillespie from his Flickr stream