2017 Tour de Trenton

Saturday, October 21

The 2017 Tour de Trenton will be an exploration of Trenton’s rich religious institutions and places of worship. The ride will be approximately 13 miles with an escort by the Trenton Police Department. Meet at Trent House 15 Market St. Trenton, NJ for 9:00 AM departure. Bring your bike, helmet, a water bottle and an open mind.

Day-of registration opens at 8:30 AM at the Trent House.

Special thanks to:

  • D&R Greenway Land Trust
  • Lawrence Hopewell Trail
  • The Circuit Trails
  • William Penn Foundation
Share Button

Back To Our Roots

Trenton Cycling Revolution bike tour celebrates 20th year with a return to its roots

For immediate release:
May 8th, 2016

Contact:
Wills Kinsley, Trenton Cycling Revolution, wills.kinsley@gmail.com

Trenton, NJ – Cycling enthusiasts in the Mid-Atlantic region will gather in the City of Trenton’s Franklin Park on Saturday, June 4th for Trenton’s 20th annual cycling tour, this year dedicated to the city’s significant trees.

From the London Planes of Quintin Avenue to the Gingkos of East Hanover St, the 2016 Tour de Trenton will take riders through the city’s parks and streets, featuring  interesting and notable trees along the route. The leisurely 15-mile ride will have a police escort and stops are planned in Trenton’s historic Riverview Cemetery and Cadwalader Park to learn about unique fauna at each location.

“The ride started as a tour of trees in Trenton 20 years ago, so we wanted to bring it back to its roots,” said Wills Kinsley, president of Trenton Cycling Revolution, the capital city’s cycling club that organizes the annual ride. “Trees make the city much more pleasant to live in and are silent observers of all the history here in town.”

The ride will begin at 9:15 a.m. in Franklin Park (Franklin St and Remsen Ave) with registration opening at 8:30 a.m. Free street parking is available adjacent to the park and residents are encouraged to bike over. There will be activities in the park before, during and after the ride, and a food truck on location.

Registration at the rate of $10 per adult and $5 per child under 18 is available at www.trentoncycling.org. Last-minute deciders may register at Franklin Park when check-in opens at 8:30 a.m. on the day of the ride. Registration fees cover the ride, a tee-shirt for the first 150 registrants, and helps defray the cost of permits and insurance.

###

Trenton Cycling Revolution is a local Trenton organization dedicated to creating a safe and healthy environment for bicyclists and pedestrians in the greater Trenton area through education, advocacy and promotion. www.trentoncycling.org

 

 

Share Button

Trenton Bike Tour Highlights History

More than 200 cyclists expected to ride through historic city in 19th annual event

For immediate release:
August 30, 2015

Contact:
Wills Kinsley, Trenton Cycling Revolution, wills.kinsley@gmail.com

Trenton, NJ – Cycling enthusiasts in the Middle Atlantic region will gather in the City of Trenton’s Mill Hill Park on Saturday, September 19, for Trenton’s 19th annual cycling tour, this year dedicated to surveying the city’s extant 18th century structures.

The 2015 “Tour de Trenton” will take participants not only to the city’s better known historic sites, such as the William Trent House (1719) and the Old Barracks (1758), but to buildings and residences that have remained in private hands and anonymous to all but the tax collector, including the Little Hermitage (1760) and the Abraham Woglum house (1784), as well as the excavations of colonial-era industry at Petty’s Run.

“This year marks the 240th anniversary of the start of the American Revolution,” said Wills Kinsley, president of Trenton Cycling Revolution, the capital city’s cycling club that organizes the annual ride. “We have dedicated this year’s tour to what Trentonians built in that century of revolutionary change.”
The ride will begin at 9:15 a.m. in Mill Hill Park (East Front Street at South Montgomery Street, Trenton), at the bridge over the Assunpink Creek near the site of the mill built in 1679 by Mahlon Stacy, the first English settler at what was then called the Falls of the Delaware. The 12-mile route takes in all but one of Trenton’s 20 known 18th century remnants.

Early-bird registration ($8 per adult, $5 per child) is available on-line until September 14 at www.trentoncycling.org. Last-minute deciders may register at Mill Hill Park when check-in opens at 8:30 a.m. on the day of the ride at the regular rate of $10 per adult and $5 per child under 18. Registration fees defray the cost of a Trenton police escort for which the city now charges.

###

Trenton Cycling Revolution is a local Trenton organization dedicated to creating a safe and healthy environment for bicyclists and pedestrians in the greater Trenton area through education, advocacy and promotion. www.trentoncycling.org

Share Button

Federal Transportation Alternatives Program Needs Support

TCR recently signed on to a letter to Senator Toomey regarding the Transportation Alternatives Program.  Thankfully, the Senator decided not to offer his amendment striking Sec. 213 Transportation Alternatives Program from the U.S. Code.  He had filed it against the Senate Finance Committee bill extending and funding MAP-21 into next year, but took no further action on its behalf. The bill passed Committee, but has become embroiled in a larger Senate skirmish on how or if to extend MAP-21.  Many factors undoubtedly influenced Sen. Toomey’s decision not to pursue his anti-TAP amendment, but most certainly the incredible outpouring of support for TAP from Pennsylvanians, and groups like ours was among them.

In the past few weeks, bike/ped/trail supporters have fought and prevailed in three congressional battles over continued federal funding for active transportation, Safe Routes to School, and the Recreational Trails Program. It seems our Congressional leadership needs to hear from us even more to better understand the importance of increasing funding for valuable active transportation programs.

Share Button

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire – Perez Response

2014 Trenton Mayoral Candidates

On February 24, TCR emailed a list of 8 questions to the mayoral candidates requesting their responses by March 28.

On May 15, the Paul Perez campaign submitted the third set of responses to the TCR mayoral candidate questionnaire. Please click here to read the full text of Mr. Perez’s responses.

We were encouraged that Mr. Perez and his team had looked up the actual text of Trenton’s nationally ranked complete streets policy:

The plan is to adhere to overall objectives authorized by council in March of 2012 and dovetail it with the context of the Perez Transportation outlined on our website: http://www.paulperezformayor.com/platform-2/transportation-plan/   This planning will recognize the interconnected multimodal network of the street grid, its intersections that cross pedestrian and bicycle paths, and will emphasize working with Mercer County, DRJBC, AECOM and state agencies through existing planning efforts to ensure complete street principles are incorporated in a context sensitive manner.

We appreciate the effort to quote text from the policy language in the second half of his answer, and hope everyone knows what those acronyms actually mean. As for the “Perez Transportation” (plan) – that may require another blog post in the future.

The second half of the answer to our question about the Assunpink Greenway was also especially noteworthy:

This effort must be combined with current greenway efforts in Trenton to ensure the capacity of Trenton’s portion of the Greenway is consistent with its surrounding townships. We would seek to augment our planning efforts in partnership with the DVRPC, stakeholders in the region, and residents along the Assunpink.  We would also seek to attract additional funds to support infrastructure, tourist and historic destination elements.

The disparity in greenway maintenance in Trenton is an issue we’ve written about previously, and we agree about both the need to work in partnership with DVRPC, and to engage residents that live along the Assunpink.

Perhaps the answer most worth quoting in its entirety had to do with encouraging bicycle and pedestrian activity in Trenton:

Paul Perez believes that increasing bicycle traffic for city residents can be an enjoyable experience and can open up several recreational activities for bicyclers that would help our economy grow.  Bicycle traffic initiatives will include:

•Rebates for businesses that create bicycle parking infrastructures at the workplace or facility;

•Increase use of bike paths throughout the city to increase bike riding;

•Improved infrastructure for bike riders, including bike gates for locking bicycles and parking, particularly at city-owned workplaces.

We appreciate the recognition that providing recreational activities (and infrastructure!) for bicyclists may help our local economy. The second bullet point seems like more of an outcome than a tactic, but we’ll gladly join Mr. Perez (or anyone) on Trenton bike paths. The emphasis on bike parking is interesting, and those approaches may lead to an increase in activity, though we have some ideas on other ways to improve the bike and pedestrian friendliness of our city.

Mr. Perez was the most succinct in responding to our question about bike riding abilities:

Yes, the summer of 2013.

Overall, thoughtful replies from Mr. Perez with some very good ideas, and we appreciate the response!

 Here again is the link to the full text of the TCR questionnaire from Mr. Eric Jackson.

Trenton Cycling Revolution is non-partisan and will not be making an endorsement in the 2014 Trenton mayoral election. However, as concerned citizens and residents, we want to understand the positions of the candidates. We are especially interested in how each candidate might build upon our success developing a bicycle and pedestrian culture in Trenton and which candidates might disrupt our progress.

Share Button

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire – Jackson Response

2014 Trenton Mayoral Candidates

On February 24, TCR emailed a list of 8 questions to the mayoral candidates requesting their responses by March 28.

On April 16, the Eric Jackson campaign submitted the second set of responses to the TCR mayoral candidate questionnaire. Please click here to read the full text of Mr. Jackson’s responses.

We were especially thrilled by this response regarding the connectivity of streets and trails in Trenton:

If elected, I would be interested in having a member of my administration assigned to working with neighboring municipalities to increase trail and street connectivity as well as promote regional use of the D&R Canal, a potentially great asset to our City. My Administration would participate in any existing regional coordinating efforts, and if none exist, would help to foster creation of such a collaboration. We would also work through our existing Green Team to make this happen.

A regional approach is correct and Trenton could certainly provide more vocal leadership. There are several existing initiatives in which Trenton has previously and still does participate, and a new mayor’s insights and support would be most welcome.

Mr. Jackson’s definition of a complete street was very technically correct, so we know someone can google, but the implementation plan definitely got our attention for being specific, supportive and smart:

I would do a review of the policy upon being elected to Office to determine if there are retrofits that could be initiated. I would also look to make sure the policy is integrated with existing city ordinances as well as relevant county laws and regulations that affect our City. The policy should not be a stand alone policy, but rather should be integrated across City Departments. I would also look for opportunities to increase safety of pedestrians and cyclists throughout the City and marketing events and opportunities to promote walking and cycling, including working with the public health community.

The response regarding the D&R Canal is also worth noting:

I would encourage collaborations with the non-profit sector, including TCR, Isles, D&R Greenway, and others, all relevant levels of government, and neighboring municipalities. I would prioritize the clean-up and safety of the Canal Greenway, and work to promote events and activities centered upon the D&R Canal Greenway. I would also advocate for the State to lease out the canal houses in Trenton.

This is another smart approach, and while this answer is technically correct and we are supportive of the broad based solution, ultimately, the responsibility for park and trail maintenance (not just the canal houses) lies with the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park Superintendent.

Overall, thoughtful replies from Mr. Jackson with some very good ideas, and we appreciate the response!

Still no responses from Ms. McBride, Mr. Perez nor Mr. Worthy. If anyone has contact information for Mr. Leggett, we want to ask him as well! Here again is the link to the full text of the TCR questionnaire from Mr. Jim Golden.

*UPDATE: For the synopsis of responses from Mr. Perez, the other run-off candidate, please click here.

Trenton Cycling Revolution is non-partisan and will not be making an endorsement in the 2014 Trenton mayoral election. However, as concerned citizens and residents, we want to understand the positions of the candidates. We are especially interested in how each candidate might build upon our success developing a bicycle and pedestrian culture in Trenton and which candidates might disrupt our progress.

Share Button

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire – Golden Response

Trenton Cycling Revolution is non-partisan and will not be making an endorsement in the 2014 Trenton mayoral election. However, as concerned citizens and residents, we want to understand the positions of the candidates. We are especially interested in how each candidate might build upon our success developing a bicycle and pedestrian culture in Trenton and which candidates might disrupt our progress.

2014 Trenton Mayoral Candidates

On February 24, TCR emailed a list of 8 questions to the mayoral candidates requesting their responses by March 28.

On March 29, Jim Golden was the first to respond with answers to our questions. For the full document, please see Responses to TCR questionnaire from Jim Golden. We greatly appreciate the reply, and especially this opening sentiment:

I share your fundamental desire to make Trenton a healthier, more environmentally friendly and fun place to live.

Yet, some of Mr. Golden’s responses make us a little nervous. Although he appears to understand the concept of a complete street, Mr. Golden doesn’t exactly give a ringing endorsement for the comprehensive complete streets policy Trenton adopted in 2012, which was ranked number 8 in the nation:

Our budget priorities will be largely influenced by the Priority Based Budgeting (PBB) approach we plan to implement.   Department directors will be responsible for crafting spending proposals and presenting them in public forums.  They will explain costs and expected measurable benefits and the public will actually vote on their priorities.   These priorities will be submitted to City Council and will inform each budget we present.

We will ask that as one of the Public Works Department’s proposals they submit a plan to implement the “Compete Streets” policy as part of PBB.

While we understand the hesitation to over commit during the campaign, asking one department to submit a proposal isn’t exactly what we had in mind for “implementing” the city’s nationally recognized complete streets policy. We think Priority Based Budgeting would likely be positive for the city, but there are many follow-up questions about the specifics of such an exercise.

Perhaps the most interesting piece of Mr. Golden’s response proposes a Trenton trolley system:

One specific tactic that we intend to pursue in order to make the city more walkable is to develop a user friendly trolley system in Trenton that replaces most bus routes and links downtown and the Trenton Transit Center to all wards.   We expect such a system to increase Trenton’s walkability by allowing residents to not need a car when taking the short trip to downtown or to other markets.  It will be part of a hub and spoke system connecting the transit center to the rest of the city.

We’re intrigued, and curious to hear how  replacing downtown bus routes might work. We completely agree about the need to link the Trenton Transit Center with the downtown and all wards, but we tend to think better bike lanes and marked crosswalks would do more to improve accessibility, at a far lower cost.

Mr. Golden does know how to ride a bike:

I learned to ride a bike in the inner city of Philadelphia when I was eight years old.  Although we own two bikes, my wife and I typically go bike riding whenever we travel on family vacations.  It’s been a couple of years since I last rode, but riding a bike is always a relaxing and enjoyable experience.

At another point, Mr. Golden has a good suggestion for us:

One suggestion that I’ll make to TCR is to create a bike tour event that retraces the routes General Washington and his troops took into and out of Trenton.   You might see me on a bike for that.

Regardless of what happens in the election, we will have to take Mr. Golden up on that concept!

 

On March 30, we emailed a reminder to the other candidates. None of the candidates had yet responded.

On March 31, Paul Perez responded and said, “Our reply is forth coming. Sorry for the delay.” We have not yet received the full responses.

On April 5, a surrogate for the Jackson campaign responded saying they would look into it and ask Eric Jackson about it personally.

Kathy McBride did not respond to either email.

Walker Worthy did not respond to either email.

We have not been able to find an email address for Oliver “Bucky” Leggett.

If any additional candidates submits responses to our questions, we will post them promptly. In the meantime, we’re grateful for the thoughtful responses from Jim Golden.

Share Button

Complete Streets Champions

On October 21, the Trenton Green Team (several TCR members are representatives) was honored at the New Jersey Complete Streets Summit with a “Complete Streets Champions” award. We are grateful for the recognition and thank the summit facilitators for the honor. We are very proud of the nationally ranked complete streets policy that Trenton passed in 2012 and we’ve been supportive of the early steps toward implementation, which many community stakeholders encouraged and helped facilitate.

Particularly as we have just accepted an award for championing this policy, we must remain vigilant and speak loudly about the need for REAL implementation here in Trenton.

With state, county and city policies effectively covering every inch of street in Trenton, ALL streets projects within city limits need consideration for what the complete streets policies mean, during design, redesign, engineering, paving, repaving, striping processes. In every phase of every project, are the needs of all users being considered? If not, why not? Are the state, county and city coordinating with each other and outside entities (like the DRJTBC) on streets projects in Trenton?

Yet on a recent trip to city hall, we couldn’t help but notice the posters hanging throughout the atrium, possibly touting the street project “successes” of the administration. Unfortunately, these posters illustrate the immense work that still needs to be done to make our streets complete. In fact, photos of the posters are included here, with some commentary:

The new crossing on Market Street near Mercer County Community College Kerny Campus, with lane width reductions achieved through striping and plastic barriers, is encouraging and an example of the innovative street design Trenton could embrace in multiple locations throughout the city. More of this, please:

20130726_091053

Share Button

Call the D&R Canal State Park Superintendent

More than a year ago, on a bike ride through Trenton I noticed some very creepy graffiti scrawled across the path on the new section of the D&R Canal.

On September 27, 2012 I reported and shared a photo of the graffiti with D&R Park Superintendent Patricia Kallesser and her staff in a meeting at the NJ Department of Environmental Protection.

Recently a reporter for Streetsblog NYC was scoping out trails in our vicinity and decided to ride through Trenton. Here was one of his tweets:

Stephen Miller@miller_stephen 14 Sep

Welcome to Trenton! =( cc pic.twitter.com/SJoT9gA9KU

More than a year after it was first reported, nothing has been done about the graffiti!
Please call Superintendent Kallesser and ask her why the Trenton section of our trails are not maintained with the same care as other sections. Her number and email are posted online here.

 

Share Button

Not Quite Complete

I usually try to use this space to talk about positive things happening on the streets of Trenton. We catch more flies with honey, right?

But lately, it has been increasingly frustrating to witness absence of care for our city’s streets and total lack of attention to detail. Here are just a few examples:

 

20130729_085725

We have been very supportive of the South Market and South Warren Street project that added bike lanes to our downtown. However, several months after the project was completed, cars park freely along South Market Street on a daily basis. Why haven’t the meters been installed yet? Would it be asking too much to install electronic meter boxes that cities like Philadelphia and Asbury Park have started utilizing? Probably. Maybe that is why  the meter poles have stood empty for months. We’re waiting on a state-of-the-art electronic system.

20130713_101731

Another unfinished remnant of the project can be found just two blocks away on John Fitch Way. There has been a very clear drainage issue since the project was “completed” yet this bucket sat in the puddle for months. News flash: this bucket isn’t working to fix the problem.

Also noticeably unfinished, the street lamps have still not been installed. You can see the spot next to the sign post. Now to be fair, this may not be the city’s responsibility. But should someone at the city be insisting that the utilities come and do the installation? It seems that leaving the bases exposed creates a potential electrical hazard. Or we could just wait months and months and months…

20130710_091152

Speaking of electrical hazards and months of inaction, this situation on Market Street near the corner of Jackson Street makes me the most angry. I remember clearly the day that a truck brought down the wires by making a terrible turn. It was right after Hurricane Sandy, probably a week later. Everyone had just gotten their power restored and the truck took it away again. THIS is how the street was left. Can anyone imagine this being acceptable nearly a year after an accident in a suburban town? Would the utility dare to leave the sidewalk, bricks, wires like this on a busy thoroughfare? Would the elected officials do something to fix the problem? Or notice?

 

 

Share Button