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Transit Thursday

May 14, 2015

Today we’re taking a break from our regularly scheduled Bike Month programming to talk about something really exciting that’s happening in our area.

The Wake County Transit Strategy

Since December of 2014, Wake Transit has been working with an advisory committee made up of community members to develop a transit plan for Wake County. They want this plan to set up Wake County with a killer transit strategy for the next decade and up to the next 50 years.

Wake Transit’s site includes blog posts, an event calendar, updated reports from their advisory board, and surveys. The plan is focused on what the people of Wake County want from their transit system so your feedback and survey responses are crucial.

You can also check out some great articles on what Wake Transit has been doing recently on Next City or Jarrett Walker’s blog, Human Transit. Jarrett Walker is one of the consultants who’s been tasked with assisting Wake County in their transit goals so he’s a great source for information on the plans.

Follow along as the strategy develops and share your thoughts on Wake Transit’s Twitter.

 

You can also share your questions and feedback in our comments section below!

Two Link Tuesday

May 12, 2015

A friendly Bike Month reminder

This is your friendly reminder that Bike Month is half-way over so it’s time to check out our calendar of events to make sure you pack in as much cycle-friendly fun as possible.

To give you a heads up, here’s what’s coming soon:

  • Bike and Bus Workshop in Chapel Hill
  • Kidical Mass Cruiser Ride for Families (a personal favorite)
  • Bike Durham Cyclists Workshops
  • Durham, NCSU, North Hills, Downtown Raleigh and Cary Bike to Work Day Pit-Stops

Trying to figure out what you might learn at the Cyclists Workshops? Curious what a pit-stop is? All of this and more can be found on our calendar!

(Hint: the workshops have something for all cycling levels and the pit-stops include breakfast. Need we say more?)

But maybe you’re feeling a little anti-social. We’re not here to judge.

You can always try out one of these fantastic places to ride in our great state of North Carolina. 

 

We can’t wait to see you at this week’s Bike to Work Pit-Stops! Thanks for riding (and biking) with us!

Transit Thursday

May 7, 2015

Things You Should Know

A group of cyclists at the Old Capital Building in Downtown Raleigh while on an Oaks and Spokes Group Ride

Photo from one of Oaks and Spokes‘ groups rides they have put on in celebration of Bike Month. 

In our attempt to always help our readers stay in the know, this week’s Transit Thursday is all about transit happenings in the Triangle and on the web. Because it’s Bike Month, the web is abuzz with all things cycling, traveling, commuting, etc. We’ve pulled some of our favorites for you.

First up: Raleigh Union Station Groundbreaking is tomorrow! We’ll be there to make sure you’re getting all the updates. Follow us on Twitter to keep track if you can’t make it to the event.

Cyling tech you didn’t know you needed but now you won’t want to live without.

San Francisco is giving raised cycling lanes a try. Let’s get these to the Triangle!

The hi-tech rain poncho you’ll want to have while riding your bike but can wear on the street.

And my personal favorite, an Instagram account to remind you of the beauty that you can be seen from the seat of a bike .

What cool things have you been talking about for Bike Month? Let us know in the comments!

May Means Bike Month!

May 1, 2015

It’s Bike Month and Today We’re Focused On:

Bike Basics. Do you have them?

Graphic saying "helmet, lights, lock"

Today’s post (and all of them during the month of May) is focusing on a specific type of transit: biking.

You may have heard that May is National Bike Month. If you haven’t, MAY IS NATIONAL BIKE MONTH!

In the spirit of two-wheeled travel and before we embark on a month of bike-flavored fun, we wanted to discuss the basics of becoming a regular cyclist.

First things first! If you’re new to cycling, it can be pretty intimidating to find the right bike for you, know where to ride, or decide what gear you should invest in at first.

It’s more simple that you think.

The three basics we recommend everyone have are: a helmet for every single ride, lights for night riding, and a lock for any time you’re parking your bike.

REI has put together a really great breakdown for new riders that answers tons of questions, even the ones you may feel timid about asking. (Remind me to tell you about the time I needed help pumping up my tires)

For all you seasoned cyclists, were there specific things you felt were daunting when you first started riding? What tips would you have for beginners?

Share with us in the comments!

Two Link Tuesday

April 28, 2015

April showers bring May flowers… and Bike Month!

Ready, Set, GoSmart. Bike Month May 2015

Ok. ok. Bike Month doesn’t have anything to do with rain but it has everything to do with the month of May!

Starting this Friday, May 1st, there are going to be events all over the Triangle celebrating cycling and we sincerely hope you’ll join in.

Where to find great content on biking: here!

We’ll be posting bike-focused content here all month long – from cycling resources to testimonies of people who ride regularly- so stay tuned!

Where to find out about events: on our website’s Bike Month Calendar

Want to go on a group ride? We’ve got that listed!

Want to learn about basic bike maintenance? We know where you can!

Events such as these are happening in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Carrboro, and Cary. Look through the calendar and find the events you don’t want to miss.

How to be involved: social media

Tag us in all of your Bike Month photos on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram using our hashtag #GoSmartBike.

We’d love to see how you ride and we’ll be giving away prizes throughout the month. You never know when tagging a photo will enter you to win something awesome!

 

As always, thanks for riding (and biking) with us!

Two Link Tuesday

April 21, 2015

Today’s post is less about the bus and more about where the bus can take you. 

(There’s also a few more than two links. Sorry, not sorry.)

Here at GoSmart, we frequently talk about the amazing things there are to see and do in the Triangle. Whether you consider yourself a resident of “Chapel Thrill” or “Raleighwood”, you know our home has a ton to offer.

Today’s Indy Week article is a booming echo of this.

The article highlights the overwhelming amount of projects currently happening in Downtown Raleigh. The coolest part of the write-up, in our opinion, is that it recognizes both the need for “enhancing urban mobility” and that growth “makes it easier to build people-friendly infrastructure, things like mass transit and bike shares, because there are people to use them.”

Seeing downtown areas grow is super exciting to us. We not only want our buses to take you where you need to go but we’re also stoked to see the areas where we’re already running growing into centers for entertainment and business.

Without trying very hard to come up with a list, here are some new spots you can try out by bus in Raleigh:

  • BREW Coffee Bar is a recently opened coffee shop sits in the middle of Seaboard Station and will pour you a great cup of coffee or serve up a delicious sandwich (probably made with bread from another local business, Yellowdog Bakery).

Speaking of Yellow Dog… if you’re paying this bakery a visit you can go next door to find:

  • Person St. Bar– where you can play pool or stop by on a Sunday night to watch the most recent episode of Game of Thrones
  • Lumina Clothing– this menswear shop is the best spot downtown to freshen up your wardrobe with clothing and accessories that are not only stylish but super high in quality and made in the U.S.
  • Standard Foods– ok ok. This one is actually coming soon, but we’re so excited to have a grocery store in downtown that we couldn’t help but include it!

If you’re deeper into downtown you could try:

  • Lucette Grace– I mean, any excuse to indulge in some dessert, right? Their site says they’re “a starting point for your day, an escape in the middle, and a reward at the end”. We can’t really describe this patisserie in any better way so we’ll leave it at that.
  • Death and Taxes– if you live in downtown Raleigh we’re pretty sure you already know about this long-awaited opening. The latest in Ashley Christensen’s restaurant group is finally here and is ready to host you for evenings with fantastic chefs of the south.

The list goes on and on and on. What new spots in downtown are you really excited about? Tell us what’s going up in your neighborhood and what you wish downtown Raleigh had.

Leave your two cents in the comments. I’ll be sitting here enjoying my Brew coffee waiting to chat. 

Coffee cup from Brew Coffee Bar

Wrapping Up #CarlessMarch

March 30, 2015

My Final #CarlessMarch Thoughts

 

Photo of Eleanor "thinking" with text saying "Oh, Snap!"

If you’ve been following my journey during Carless March then you know it’s been a really interesting and challenging experience that will forever change the way I travel.

I could share a ton of thoughts from this month like how I kinda missed driving and that I’m developing thighs that could crush you from all the biking I’ve been doing. But I’m not going to do that. Instead, I have one takeaway that I think overshadows any other statements I can make.

A pros and cons list of reasons to use public transit instead of driving just isn’t going to cut it. 

Choosing public transit or environmentally sustainable methods of travel become something that make sense when you realize the larger implications of travel on where you live and the people who share that space and community with you. There has to be a bit of selflessness in your decision to go carless because, at the end of the day, it’s going to be a sacrifice.

It’s going to rain.

The bus is going to be late and you’re going to miss your connection.

Your sister is going to live somewhere that’s not accessible by public transit.

A stranger WILL sneeze on you.

The list goes on and on.

In most places, choosing public transit is something we have to dedicate ourselves to because we recognize its value on a larger scale than our own, little lives.

I hope you will.

Eleanor


And now for some fun (because, let’s face it, I can’t ever just be serious)

A video of a bike messenger who’s really gonna make you want to hit the streets

A way to make your commute pay off

Try this instead when you travel

A Locally Grown, Locally Owned… bus?

My ride

If you’re visual like me

Where to go if you’re super serious about it

A way to support better transportation

A killer app for anyone using transit

How you feel when you can finally climb that hill on your bike

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