|Nice Ride Minnesota|
|Full parking at the St. Paul Transportation Summit|
I think it mirrored nicely one of the highlights that I read from the National Bike Summit that bicycling should no longer be considered a fringe activity. Douglas Meyer, who spoke on the Perceptions of Biking on Capitol Hill suggested that bike advocates tone down the message that “cycling is going to save the world” and that this type of promotion risks becoming “the equivalent of selling snake-oil.” (If you read my blog from February 28 you would see that I agree with him.)
The final speaker from the St. Paul Summit, MNDOT Commissioner Charlie Zelle, underlined that transit and roads are not separate systems, and that we need to maximize our investment in roads for the use of all. Agreed.
But between the rah-rah of the first and last speaker, there was a lot of talk on ways to justify raising regional sales taxes to be able to pay for improvements to the system. There is proposed legislation at the State Capitol (different from the Governor’s current budget proposal) that audience members were asked to buy into. A few days removed from the event, I wonder what the culmination of possible raised taxes for each special interest (from education and health to transportation and the arts) will leave me with.
This is too much thinking for this blog. I think I will just get out and ride.