Link Roundup: Biking During Inauguration Week

TL;DR: Do not attempt to bike around or through the federal core of DC for the next week.

Things to know:

Bicycles are not permitted within the Inauguration Perimeter.

The Secret Service has not released a full map of closures, but there’s a list: lots of roads and bridges are closed. The Memorial Bridge and 14th Street Bridge are currently listed as open to pedestrians, but we do not recommend relying on that, and would definitely not plan to try to bring your bike with you.

As of this writing The Google Maps traffic layer has reasonably current closures marked.

The National Mall is closed.

Lots of bikeshare stations are closed.

Lots of transit stations are closed too.

Trails are not included in the closures lists we’ve seen, but assume that portions of the Rock Creek Trail around the Kennedy Center will be closed, and probably sections of the Anacostia River Trail between the 11th Street Bridge and the Jefferson Memorial.

The Washington Post has a good summary here, which will probably be more up to date than this post. And the good folks at DCist are also tracking closures and have made a map.

Some brief editorializing:

In a normal inauguration year, we would be recommending your bike as a great way to get close to the National Mall without dealing with parking or crowded trains.

This year, there will be violent fascists around the city looking for a fight and an on-edge security apparatus looking to stop them.

Stay safe. Stay home if you can.

If you’re getting on your bike for fun, head away from the city rather than toward it.

New Data: Most DC voters support protected bike lanes

This past December, WABA partnered with Data for Progress on a citywide poll on biking issues. We have some good news: 

  • 79% of likely voters in DC would support a protected bike lane network, including on neighborhood streets, if it meant bike riders could ride in the street and be safe from traffic.
  • 73% of likely voters in DC support adding more protected bike lanes around the city.
  • 63% of likely D.C. voters would bike more around Washington, D.C. if they felt safer biking on the road. 

As the District continues to seek ways to meet its climate and safety goals, a protected bike lane network is a popular solution that can be implemented on a short timeline. Let’s go! 

If you are into spreadsheets you can take a look at the numbers here, but the key takeaway is that this support for a better bike network is consistent across race, gender, and political party. 

When the D.C. economy starts to open up after the pandemic has passed, we need to ensure that DC residents have safe infrastructure to commute on—we need to start building more protected bike lanes now!

What’s Next for 20X20?

In 2020, thanks to your support and voice, so many of the protected bike lanes we’ve been fighting for over the last year are open for riding or slated for construction this coming spring. We’re a lot closer to a fully protected and connected bicycle network for DC, than when we started this campaign, 18 months ago. 

But looking ahead, DC’s network still has major gaps and projects that have not gotten off the ground, projects that will require our collective voices to push them from plans to pavement. 

This month we are reflecting on our successes and what we’ve learned over the past year. We want to hear from supporters like you as we develop the next phase of this campaign. Together, we’re organizing grassroots power to build more protected bike lanes and low-stress places to bike, faster

Take this Survey and Help Shape the Future of this Campaign

As 2021 begins, we need to hear from you to help shape the next phase of our campaign. 

Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey that will give us the feedback we need to help shape the future of our campaign to complete the protected bike lane network in DC.

TAKE THE SURVEY

Take A Moment to Celebrate

In July 2019, DC had built about 11 miles of protected bike lanes. With the collective and organized action of hundreds of advocates like you, we spoke up, telling Neighborhood Commissioners, Councilembmers, and DDOT staff that we needed a connected, protected and more equitable bike lane network. How did we do?

  • 6.6 miles of new or upgraded protected bike lanes installed Aug 2019 – Dec 2020
  • 4.2 miles of protected bike lane approved & on track for installation in Spring 2021
  • 7+ miles of protected bike lane projects took significant steps in planning, design and community buy-in with completion likely in 2021 or 2022
4th St. NW/SW
G St. NW
Brentwood Parkway NE
New Jersey Ave. SE

Show Up & Get Involved in 2021

We have groups of community advocates working in every ward to build support for the 20×20 projects. Getting involved is easy. Sign up hereto be the first to hear about actions, updates and get involved with planning.

Let’s ride into 2021 together.

2021 is in sight — and we’ve got a good tailwind thanks to a generous WABA donor who is matching your gifts, up to $50,000, between now and midnight. Can you make a gift right now to help WABA ride strong into the new year, and see its impact double?

We have $30,000 to go to meet our goal! So before you do your thing tonight to bid adieu to this strange and hard year (at home, with your household), celebrate by investing in a better 2021: 

  • More bike lanes, so it’s easier to use your bike to run errands, get to and from work, and safely visit your loved ones.
  • More trails, so we can more easily go for a ride or hike on a weekend afternoon.
  • Better policies that prioritize people over cars, so more people are empowered to safely bike, walk, scoot where they need to go.

This matching gift, up to $50,000, is a phenomenal show of faith in the WABA community to make it happen — we’re counting on you. Your support means a just and sustainable transportation system where biking, walking, and transit are the best ways to get around.

Can you make a gift today to invest in that vision, and make 2021 better for you, your neighborhood, and the whole region?

BIG news for better bicycling in 2021…

A generous donor has made an incredible pledge to get WABA across the 2020 finish line: she’s going to match your gifts, up to $50,000, doubling the impact of your support for more bike lanes and better bicycling all around — as long as you give before the clock strikes 2021. 

Will you make a gift today to make 2021 better for you, your neighborhood, and the region?

Here’s what’s on the horizon for WABA, our region, and our bicycling community in the coming year, with your investment: 

  • More bike lanes. In 2020 we pushed harder than ever, and completely changed the game—setting the stage for even more progress in the coming year.
  • A connected multi-use trail network. More than 10 miles of trails are under construction right now, and with your support, we’ll reprioritize federal transportation funding from highway projects (that won’t even diminish traffic!) to trail projects.
  • Culture shift. Our work is at the intersection of so many critical issues: racial justice, climate crises, affordable housing, transportation equity, and more. In the coming year, WABA is committed to contextualizing our vision of a just and sustainable transportation system within work for a region that’s just and sustainable as a whole. 
  • Power building. With training and support from WABA, community advocates like you will put more pressure on elected officials to transform streets at the block-by-block level. 
  • More everyday WABA goodness. Online and on the ground — from fix-a-flat webinars to safe group events, 2021 will bring more classes, trainings, and rides to keep us together. 

We’re glad you’re on this ride with us— $50,000 is a big goal, and we have never been challenged by such a generous match before. We couldn’t do this work without you beside us. 

Will you give to WABA today, to show your support for bicycling in 2021?

Double your impact—today only— and empower even more people to ride.

The 2019 WABA in the Wild group, starting their journey on the C&O Canal towpath in Cumberland, MD. Today only, a generous group of WABA in the Wild trip alumni from multiple years and friends are matching your donations to WABA up to $10k!

Something exciting has happened: a group of WABA in the Wild trip alumni and friends have stepped up to match your donations, dollar for dollar, up to $10,000, today only.

These donors started off as strangers at a WABA event, motivated by everything from the love of a great ride to climate advocacy to safer streets. But after a weekend celebrating the ways bicycling brightens lives, they ended their ride proving the bonds bicycling creates.

That’s what WABA’s all about: not just riding bikes, but feeling safe and supported as you do, and helping  others feel that way, too. Together, we can build a region where everyone feels empowered to ride. 

Today, these donors are giving back to WABA for the long ride—and they’re asking you to join them.  Can you make a gift of $ or more today, and see your gift doubled— a testament to what we can accomplish as a community?

With 2020 almost behind us, we’re ready to roll strong into 2021 and meet whatever’s ahead in this new year. But we can’t do it alone. We need our friends riding beside us (even if it’s not in person). We need you: your energy, your support, and your investment. Can we count on you? 

What does Family Biking look like for you? Show us!

By Jeff Wetzel

I’m the official “Family Biking” person here at WABA, as the Family and Youth Education Coordinator. “How do I do this thing?” is a question I get a lot. Answers often turn into a conversation. This thing might be teaching a kid to ride, finding the best bike for a child, or  hauling kids to school by bike. There is no one-size-fits-all answer—it really depends on where you are riding, the age and ability of the child(ren), your budget, and more. 

To help illustrate the many, many great ways to bike with your family, we are curating a series of Family Bike Portraits from across the region. We want to see and hear what “Family Biking” looks like for you, whether you’re in Capitol Hill or Bowie or Herndon. Got trailers and child seats? Box bikes? Kids pedaling on their own? Mom or dad scoping out a new ebike? Whether you ride from your front door to school or hitch bikes to a car and drive to a safe trail to ride with an aunt or uncle, your story is important. 

We’d love to hear your stories and see your photos.

Below is what Family Biking looks like for me. We want to hear from and share what it looks like for you. A paragraph or two along with a few pictures won’t capture the entirety of your story, but will let people see some of your experience. If you are willing to share your Family Biking Portrait, send a brief description and a few photos to youth@waba.org. We plan to share them over the course of the next year.

I live with four girls between the ages of 6 and 11. They can all ride their bikes comfortably for 20 minutes without complaint, and do well with slow neighborhood streets in Northeast DC, but we take the sidewalk on busier roads. They all have their own bikes, but often ride in our box bike when I need to take them further, faster, or along places that I’m not comfortable having them ride. (Read about our 20×20 Campaign to bring safe places to communities across the District here)

¡Muéstranos cómo tu familia pasea en bicicleta!

Hola, soy Jeff y como el Coordinador de Educación para Familia y Juventud soy la persona oficial encargada del  “Ciclismo en Familia” en WABA. La pregunta que más recibo es “¿Cómo hago esta cosa?” y usualmente la pregunta se convierte en una larga conversación. Esta cosa va desde como enseñar a unx niñx como andar en bicicleta, preguntas sobre cuál es la mejor bicicleta para tu hijx, hasta cómo podemos irnos a la escuela en bicicleta. No hay una respuesta única y correcta para todas estas preguntas. Depende del lugar donde vayas andar en bici, la edad y capacidad de lxs niñxs, tu presupuesto y más.

Por eso, hemos decidido compilar una serie de Retratos de Ciclismo en Familia de la región de Washington, DC. Queremos ver y escuchar que es el “Ciclismo en Familia” para ti. Queremos oír de personas de toda la región, desde Capitol Hill hasta Bowie y Herndon, y más allá. Personas con remolques, asientos para niñxs, bicicletas con caja y niñxs que andan en sus propias bicis. Tu historia es importante, no importa si viajas desde la puerta de tu casa hasta la escuela o si ustedes suben las bicicletas en un coche y conducen hasta un sendero seguro para pasear. Nos encantaría escuchar tus historias y ver tus fotos. 

Abajo puedes leer cómo yo defino el ciclismo familiar para mí. Nosotrxs en WABA queremos escuchar y compartir cómo tu lo defines para tu familia. Sabemos que uno o dos párrafos junto con algunas fotos no pueden capturar la totalidad de tu historia, pero esperamos que puedan ayudar a otras personas a ver parte de tu experiencia en familia. Si estás dispuestx a compartir tu Retrato de Ciclismo en Familiaa, envíanos una breve descripción y algunas fotos a youth@waba.org. Planeamos compartirlos a lo largo del próximo año.

¿Qué es el ciclismo para ti, Jeff?

Yo vivo con cuatro niñas que tienen entre de 6 y 11 años. Todas saben andar en bicicleta cómodamente durante 20 minutos sin quejarse, y les va bien con las calles lentas y calmas en los barrios del noreste de DC. Pero también tomamos la acera en los caminos más transitados. Todas tienen sus propias bicicletas, pero a menudo viajan en nuestra bicicleta de caja cuando necesito llevarlas más lejos, más rápido, o por lugares en los que no me siento cómodo con ellas andando solas. (Lea sobre nuestra Campaña 20×20 para crear lugares seguros para andar en bici en todas las comunidades de el Distrito – enlace en inglés)

Celebrating the holidays together, apart.

Digital card design by Tessla Wilson, Business Partnerships Coordinator

Holiday greetings from my dining room table! In any other year we’d be setting up bike parking and stringing twinkly lights across a bar right about now, welcoming WABA members to our annual holiday party. We’d celebrate our 2020 wins and raise a glass to 2021 together. 

You know how the rest of this goes — we’re staying home this year. But at least one thing is the same: we’re still so grateful for your support and this community and consider ourselves so lucky to have people like you pushing us to work harder for better bicycling so everyone can enjoy their perfect ride. Thank you.

If you’d like to raise a toast together in spirit, check out the holiday cocktail/mocktail recipes below. Here’s  to 2021! We can’t wait until it’s safe for us all to ride bikes together again.

The WABA 72

A WABA staff holiday twist on a classic cocktail.

(Keep scrolling for an alcohol-free version!)

Ingredients 

Cocktail: 

  • 1 ounce cranberry simple syrup (recipe below!)
  • 1 ounce triple sec 
  • 1.5 ounces gin 
  • Sparkling wine, to top
  • Orange peel, for garnish (optional, but a nice addition if you’re feelin’ fancy!) 

Makes one cocktail.

Cranberry simple syrup:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen)

Makes plenty—keep extra in the fridge and use over the next 3-4 weeks.

Instructions 

First, make the simple syrup!

  • In a medium saucepan, bring  cranberries, sugar, and water to a simmer over medium. 
  • Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until cranberries are tender but haven’t burst, 10 minutes. 
  • Let cool, then strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Discard cranberries.

Once your simple syrup has cooled, make your cocktail! (Make more than 1 at once by scaling up the recipe.)

  • Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  • Pour in the gin, triple sec, and cranberry simple syrup. Stir about 20 seconds. 
  • Strain the liquid into flutes or coupe glasses and top with sparkling wine.
  • Twist orange peel and garnish your glass.
  • Enjoy this drink while it’s cold!

The WABA 72 Mocktail

A WABA twist on a classic beverage, without alcohol

Ingredients 

Cocktail: 

  • ¼ cup cranberry simple syrup (recipe below!)
  • ¼ cup orange juice (fresh squeezed is best, but from a bottle will do just fine!)
  • Seltzer water 
  • Orange peel, for garnish (optional, but a nice addition if you’re feelin’ fancy!) 

Makes one mocktail

Cranberry simple syrup:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen)

Makes plenty—keep extra in the fridge and use over the next 3-4 weeks.

Instructions 

First, make the simple syrup!

  • In a medium saucepan, bring  cranberries, sugar, and water to a simmer over medium. 
  • Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until cranberries are tender but haven’t burst, 10 minutes. 
  • Let cool, then strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Discard cranberries.

Once your simple syrup has cooled, make your cocktail! (Make more than 1 at once by scaling up the recipe.)

  • Fill a glass with ice.
  • Pour in the orange juice and cranberry simple syrup. Stir about 20 seconds. 
  • Strain the liquid into your favorite fancy glass
  • Top with seltzer
  • Twist orange peel and garnish your glass!
  • Enjoy this drink while it’s cold!

Recipes by Anna McCormally, Events & Development Coordinator

Green shirts, pruning shears, good vibes.

Trail rangers in green shirts ride along the Anacostia River Trail with trailers

Maybe you’ve seen them sporting green shirts, trimming bushes and helping folks with flat tires. Regardless of what they’re doing, the WABA’s Trail Rangers keep our trails nice and usable.

Much of my job happens behind a computer, but this fall I got to experience working as a Trail Ranger firsthand. One day each week, a coworker and I threw on the iconic green shirt and biked around to sweep glass of trails and clean graffiti.

It was a lot of work—but it sure was rewarding. Every shift, enthusiastic folks approached us, wanting to know who we represented. “WABA!” we always shouted, heartwarmed that so many people wanted to pitch in themselves.

Like our trails themselves, the Trail Rangers bring people together. When you see us out on the trail, give us a wave or stop and say hi— we love to chat!