Missouri Bicycling, Walking, Running, and Trails News

Two grant opportunities for cities & local public health agencies to move Complete Streets forward--one due April 8th, 2020 (extended from March 23rd), the other June 15th, 2020

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has announced two grant opportunities to help cities, local public health agencies, and county health departments who want to move Complete Streets. 

If you would like to see your community implement projects such as these, please encourage them to apply for one or both grants:

  • Bicycle infrastructures/amenities (low-speed shared streets, bicycle boulevards, buffered bicycle lanes, conventional bicycle lanes, protected bicycle lanes, and signed bicycle routes-but do not include multi-use paths)
     
  • Pedestrian infrastructure (sidewalks, context-sensitive traffic calming, intersection design, street lighting, and landscaping)
     
  • Land use and environmental design (paved or unpaved trails, but does not include sidewalks or side paths)
     
  • Public transit (includes bus, light rail, van pool, dial-a-ride, subway, and paratransit)
     
  • Implementation of new or improved plans or policies (Complete Streets policies, bicycle and pedestrian master plans)

Grant #1 is open to any Missouri community and the application deadline is March 23rd April 8th.

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Dangerous Dogs Bill introduced in Missouri Legislature--and we need your stories about dangerous dogs and bicycles to help move it forward

Several years ago, cyclist Barry Bean of Peach Orchard, Missouri, was seriously injured while bicycling when a stray dog ran in his path and caused him to crash. 

Once he had recovered from his injuries, he made it his mission to change Missouri law to better prevent dangerous stray dogs.

Currently Missouri law provide penalties for dog owners if their dog is loose and bites someone. But there is no penalty if the loose dog causes any other type of injury--such as causing a bicycle crash.

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The Missouri Interscholastic Cycling League - New mountain bike clubs & teams for middle and high school students across Missouri: What is the League, Who is it for? How can I get started?

The Missouri Interscholastic Cycling League is holding informational sessions across Missouri for the next few weeks (Springfield, Joplin, St Joseph, Cape Girardeau, KC area, St Louis area), coach training this spring, forming teams and clubs starting Spring 2020, and holding its first season Fall 2020. 

 

Upcoming League Informational Sessions are Jan 23rd in Cape Girardeau, Jan 25th in Des Peres, and Feb 7th in O'Fallon.

What is the League? Who is it for? Why might individuals, communities, and schools want to get involved? How can you get started?

All those questions and more are answered below.

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Missouri State Parks and Ameren sign historic railbanking agreement for Rock Island Trail Corridor; now must raise $9.8 million before beginning trail development

Today officials from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and Ameren signed an "interim trail use agreement" that allows the 144 miles of the Rock Island railroad corridor between Windsor and Beaufort to move towards development as Rock Island Trail State Park in the near future. 

The agreement today railbanks the 144-mile section of the corridor and puts it on track for trail development within two years--if all goes well.

This is the most significant single step we have seen in moving towards Rock Island Trail State Park. Though there is still significant work to be done, the signing today shows a very significant commitment on the part of both State Parks and Ameren Missouri to move forward with the transfer of the corridor and the creation of the Rock Island Trail State Park.

Rock Island Trail supporters react

"Missouri is incredibly lucky; corridors of this type are few and far between. That's why we've been working so hard alongside our partners in the state to protect this corridor and its potential to become a world-class trail," said Eric Oberg, director of trail development for Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's (RTC's) Midwest Regional Office.

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Department of Natural Resources will announce decision on Rock Island Line Corridor Interim Trail Agreement Dec. 17 at 2pm in Eldon

Missouri State Parks will announce their decision whether to sign an Interim Trail Use Agreement on the 144 miles of the Rock Island Trail between Windsor and Beaufort, Missouri, Tuesday, December 17th, at 2pm in Eldon. 

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Complete Streets in the Tower Grove Neighborhood: How new pedestrian connections to a park and through a neighborhood improve quality of life for individuals and a whole community

Complete Streets make communities work for everyone--those who walk, those who bicycle, those who drive or use public transportation, people of all ages, and people at all levels of ability and disability.

Recently, the Tower Grove area has implemented a comprehensive plan to improve walking and bicycling connections in the area, and particularly to create better pedestrian connections Tower Grove Park from every direction.

Dana Gray of Tower Grove Neighborhoods in St Louis sent this story about how that Complete Streets work has made a real difference in the lives of Tower Grove neighbors and the community:

On a beautiful fall day, I encountered Justin Vitale on Kingshighway at Magnolia, at the Tower Grove Park Pedestrian Access project, a newly installed crosswalk leading to Tower Grove Park. We struck up a conversation as we waited for the signal to change. I asked what his thoughts were on the area’s connectivity and ease of access, given he was in a wheelchair. 

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Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting for the Butterfield Stage Experience & Butterfield 60 Gravel Road Ride Sat Oct 26

A grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Butterfield Stage Experience Route will take place on Saturday, October 26, 2019 at the Warsaw Courthouse Butterfield Monument, located at 316 Van Buren, Warsaw, Missouri.

Following the grand opening, the first ride/race event utilizing a portion of the route, the Butterfield 60 Gravel Road Event, will take place.

The Gravel Gran Fondo is a timed race for those who want to do it competitively but it's also just a fun ride at your own pace for everyone else.

Have fun with the Landmark Photo Challenge as you visit all the cool historic landmarks along the way!

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Lieutenant Governor Matt Pinnell To Open 2019 Oklahoma Bike Summit - along with MoBikeFed, the Katy Trail, and other MO presenters

MoBikeFed Executive Director Brent Hugh, former MoBikeFed president Paul Wojciechowski, and the Katy Trail will be featured at the 2019 Oklahoma Bike Summit Oct 25-26, 2019--along with Lieutenant Governor Matt Pinnell of Oklahoma, of course.

The Summit is held in Oklahoma City--so a fairly close drive for many Missourians in the southwestern part of the state.

Find out more or register here (advance registration only).

Press Release

Contact: Bonnie Winslow, bwinslowok@gmail.com

Bill Elliott, BillElliottOKC@gmail.com

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Jenn Bradshaw completes first official full ride of Butterfield Stage Experience route--254 miles across Missouri

It wasn't much more than a year ago when the Butterfield Stage Experience was just a glimmer of an idea mentioned in a regional trails planning meeting. 

This spring, when the idea the routes starting coming together--to link 8 Missouri counties and over a dozen communities via a gravel bicycle route following the historic route--and those of us planning the route go so excited about it that we were driving ourselves and our bikes across the state just to try out one segment or another and make sure it really worked, we realized we had the first 250 miles of the route ready to go.  

Why not release it and let people start to ride it and and enjoy it.

So we did.

But up until now, no one has ridden the entire 254 miles of the Butterfield Stage Experience, completely and end to end.

Now Warsaw cyclist Jenn Bradshaw has become the first--of many, we hope!--to ride the complete route.

Here is her story:

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Do you walk or bicycle in the St Louis metro area? Attend an important meeting later in October--will set the tone for biking & walking in St Louis County for years to come

Everyone who walks and bicycles is invited to attend public meetings October 16-24 in various areas of St Louis County about the new Action Plan for Walking and Biking

If you can't attend the meetings in person (or even if you can!) there is an online survey here.

Why is this plan important?

Michael Hennies of the Missouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Federation Board has been representing the Federation on the Community Advisory Team for the plan.

Mike says:

The Action Plan for Walking and Biking will ultimately be providing the planning guidance to St Louis County and the communities within St Louis County on how to create a uniform approach to designing and accounting for walking and biking.  It really is quite unprecedented from a St Louis County perspective. 

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Rock Island Trail update: Missouri State Parks enters new phase with 144-mile Rock Island Trail acquisition--now working on "partnerships" and a fundraising strategy

Missouri State Parks and Ameren have received another extension in their work to hammer out an agreement to transfer the next 144 miles of the Rock Island Corridor between Windsor and Beaufort.

The extension last until December 31st, 2019.

In seeking the extension, and in a Keynote Address at the Missouri Active Transportation Summit earlier in August, State Parks has given us the clearest picture yet of where they see the Rock Island project going.

Missouri State Parks and State Parks Foundation looking to develop partnership and financial support for the new Rock Island Trail State Park

In his Keynote Address to the 2019 Summit, State Parks Deputy Director Mike Sutherland strongly emphasized partnerships, and that State Parks is now looking out to make partnerships to make the next 144 miles of the Rock Island a success.

The filing with the Surface Transportation Board gives more detail about State Parks' plan:

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