VeloTexas 2012: promoting safer travel by bicycle
UT students, researchers, City of Austin and San Antonio city planners, TxDOT coordinators, bicyclists, and representatives of Movability Austin will gather for two days in Austin at VeloTexas to promote the use of bicycles and safety in Texas.
“Through this effort we hope to promote bicycle use as a basic travel mode — but maybe more importantly, we really hope to enhance the safety of bicycle riders,” said Dr. Randy B. Machemehl, a transportation faculty member of UT Austin and co-host of VeloTexas. The event, a technical conference for planners and engineers involved in the planning and design of on-street bicycle systems, is open to anyone interested in safer use of bicycles on streets.
VeloTexas takes place Thursday evening through Friday, October 18-19th, 2012. Thursday evening kicks off with a roundtable event on “Healthy Bicycling” on the UT Campus in Garrison Hall, Room 0-102. The Friday VeloTexas schedule takes place at the Hilton Hotel in downtown Austin, Texas. Austin was chosen as the right location to hold VeloTexas because it is one of the most bicycle friendly cities in Texas and has a comparatively large number of bicycle travelers. The event is expected to attract between 100-150 participants.
VeloTexas’ other co-host is Gonzalo E. Camacho, traffic engineer and bicyclist. Speakers for the event include Bill Kohl (UT Austin), Thomas Schlenker (San Antonio Metropolitan Health District), Enid Arvidson (UT Arlington), Annick Beaudet and Howard Lazarus (City of Austin), Charles Riou (TxDOT), Samuel Cortez (UT Parking & Transportation), Alison Mills (City of Chicago), and Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price.
VeloTexas, a partnership of public and private agencies plus members of the bicyclist community, has the goal of encouraging more bicyclists by promoting a better understanding of regulations that affect motorists and cyclists, improvements in infrastructure, and by improved maintenance of biking routes.
This year marks the first VeloTexas event, but participants hope that sharing information about bicycling safety and local resources will improve cycling conditions in Texas and lead to more opportunities for cyclists and city planners to meet. Student participants at VeloTexas will share ideas with attendees, while student attendees will learn new ideas and share with their peers.
To register for the event, visit the VeloTexas Website: http://velotexas.com/
Watch the video on Velotex 2012: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JK5kEgUa8RM
Links to bicycling safety studies in Texas: