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South Omaha Trail – July update

July 31st, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Trails | Tags:

Construction projects take a long time because much of the time the contractors are busy with multiple projects with different priorities and money incentives, having to wait on different contractors to finish their preparatory work before another can start, weather delays, etc.

The work I captured in pics on the 30-July are of natural gas installation along D St between 42nd and 36th Sts, and the start of a retaining wall east of 36th along I-80. It appears the actual onsite time needed to complete this project will be concentrated in the last few month of Autumn.

D St and 41st

D St and 41st


D St and 40th

D St and 40th


D St and 39th Ave

D St and 39th


D St and 39th St

D St and 39th


D St and 38th

D St and 38th


D St and 38th

D St and 38th


D St and 37th

D St and 37th


D St and 36th

D St and 36th


36th St and D St

36th St and D St


36th St north end of RR viaduct

36th St north end of RR viaduct


36th, btw RR and I-80 viaducts

36th, btw RR and I-80 viaducts


East of 3th St, start of wall with cement blocks

East of 3th St, start of wall with cement blocks

Previous updates and overview:
June
March
Overview

2015 Fall Wabash Two Day Ride and Camp

July 2nd, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Event | Tags: , ,

2015 Fall Wabash-Trace Two Day Ride and Camp

Ride your bike on Saturday from Omaha/Council Bluffs to Shenandoah and spend the night camping outside (free), in a lodge (free with suggested donation to SWINT), or a hotel room (you’re on your own). Wake up Sunday and ride back to Council Bluffs. Folks should use this opportunity to buy a trail pass or two to help support the SouthWest Iowa Nature Trail.

Saturday, September 26, leave Council Bluffs trailhead at 08:00.
Sunday, September 27 return.

THIS IS A SELF-SUPPORTED RIDE.
Each person is responsible for themself, and arranging sag (someone to motor your supplies down and back or pick you up to get back home) if needed. Consider working with others to arrange one sag vehicle per multiple people.

Lots of options:

  • Day trip to Mineola (9.6 miles), Malvern (21.9), or Imogene (35.5) and return. Food and drink establishment(s) at each.
  • Campground at Malvern.
  • Shower and campground at Imogene.
  • Shenandoah food and drink establishments, hotel (44.4).
  • Lodge, camping, shower, cooking appliances at Ike’s five miles south of Shenandoah (49.4).
  • Travel to end of Wabash-Trace at the Missouri line (62.3).

Click here for pics of Ike’s (common room floor for inside sleeping) and to join so we have a rough estimate of who is going.

Any questions, post them on the event page here.

Owl Ride: On the Wings of a Bike

June 17th, 2015 | Author: Brittney Ryba
Category: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

owl ride recipient

“Once we are on the road, Katie is flying on the bike, hair blowing in the wind, a smile on her face,” shared Katie’s mother Julie Klemmensen. Katie participates in the Wheel Club through the UNMC Munroe-Meyer Institute (MMI). The Wheel Club, organized by MMI, receives funding through the Meyer Foundation for Disabilities (MFD) with money raised from the Owl Ride (Omaha with Lights). Money is used to purchase adaptive bikes and the truck that transports these bikes for the people who ride. Wheel Club riders go to various locations, but most recently Kate and Julie enjoyed a ride at Lake Zorinsky. Cycling improves physical, cognitive, social and emotional functioning for people with disabilities. The Wheel Club Cooking Club and Book Club are other successful recreational therapies that the MFD supports with proceeds from the Owl Ride.

Registering for the sixth annual Owl Ride not only benefits MFD, it promotes inclusion and living an active lifestyle. This cycling adventure can be enjoyed by all ages and abilities with a short-course of 8 miles and full-route of about 16 miles. It is a safe ride with the help of volunteers, such as course marshals, who play a part in making the night-time route as safe as it can be for its 2,000 participants.

The event includes a Bright Lights contest, team contests as well as the second year of the Bike Build Off, created by Bike Masters Cycling’s Hawaiian Assassin and Jimmy Fresh. Individuals can buy votes as they register for the Owl Ride or at the event to vote for the best custom made bike and they could win the bike they vote for.

OwlRide2014big

Register as a rider today or if interested in volunteer opportunities please contact info@owlride.org. Those who register by June 22nd will receive a free Owl Ride t-shirt.

Brittney Ryba is the E-Commerce and Social Media Coordinator for Metro Credit Union. She is on the Owl Ride committee managing the event’s social media presence. The 2015 Owl Ride will be her third time participating in this event. Since childhood, Brittney has enjoyed riding her bike as she would ride bike to school, activities and on local bike trails. She loves how riding on a bike brings all the senses together with speed and the outdoors. As a mother of two little girls, she rides with her family at Lake Zorinsky and on the Wabash Trail.

OwlRide_2014brittney

Brittney (center) with her mom and sister at the 2014 Owl Ride.

CWS Bike Corral

June 4th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Bike to the Ballpark

Please consider volunteering for the College World Series bike corral. We provide valet parking at 14th and Fahey Sts, one block away from TD Ameritrade Park

CWS 2012

CWS 2012

The drop-off process:

  1. 1) customer signs in.
  2. 2) volunteer pulls number tag and write on sign in.
  3. 3) volunteer attaches number tag to bike.
  4. 4) volunteer gives number tag to customer.
  5. 5) volunteer parks bike.

Usually one works with the customer and pulls tags while another attaches tag to bike and parks it.

The pick-up process:

  1. Customer presents tag to volunteer.
  2. Volunteer gets bike and removes tag.
  3. Customer signs off on receiving bike.
  4. Volunteer puts tags together in stack.

If customer may stay later than 30 minutes beyond last game of day, have them lock their bike onto the fence at the back of the lot and don’t give them a tag.

What is the time commitment for volunteering?

The days are broken down into three 4 hour periods:

  • 12:30-4:30
  • 4:00-8:00
  • 7:30-10:30 (maximum one half hour past end of last game)

There are three positions available for each time slot:

  • shift captain
  • two assistants

Days available: Friday, June 12 through Wednesday, June 24

How to sign up for time slot?
Volunteer Spot website

cws volunteer page 1

Just sign up with your email address.

Next, click the sign-up button for the day and time you want to volunteer. Prefer shift captains have worked a previous time slot at bike valet.

cws volunteer page 2

Next, make sure to uncheck boxes at sign in page.

cws sign in

 

Please put in comments what time you will arrive/depart if not for the whole time period. Press save button at top right of comment page.

cws comment page 4

You can always log back in and change commitment time.

First shift will require tent, table, chairs to be set up. Last shift of day will require tent, tables, and chairs to be folded down and laid against fence, and entrance fence closed.

Thanks for serving people riding bikes. Please ride your bike to the corral. If you live too far away, consider parking at the Durham Museum lower parking lot and riding to the corral from there.

South Omaha Trail – June Update

June 4th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Trails | Tags:

Did a quick recon of progress on the South Omaha Trail. Short answer: After trees were taken out in February and March, grading was done from end of D St. at 38th towards 36th St, sidewalk removed along 36th St to railroad viaduct with new 10′ sidepath started. Most of the hours were spent east of 36th St along I-80 bringing in dirt, crushed rock, and installing a 30″ culvert under trail to drain the south side of I-80. Most likely work crews are now busy on road projects. With good weather, i.e. not a lot of rain days, the trail should be completed by this December.

Looking southwest towards F St.
jun pic 2

Looking northeast down steep embankment where trail parallels railroad line.
jun pic 1

Looking west at 42nd St bridge.
jun pic 3

Looking east on D St towards 36th St.
jun pic 4

Looking west from 36th st towards D St.
jun pic 5

Looking south on 36th St.
jun pic 6

Looking south on 36th St.
jun pic 7

Looking east from 36th St along south side of I-80. The extra dirt was brought in from the Henry Doorly Zoo’s hill near its north entrance. Notice billboard at far end behind road grader to reference next pic.
jun pic 8

Looking west up hill at billboard post. This area where I’m standing needs about 15′ of fill for the 5% grade down to I-80 bridge underpass.
jun pic 10

Looking south over the 30″ main exit draining south side of I-80 towards 5′ culvert under railroad tracks.
jun pic 11

Looking northeast towards I-80 bridge.
jun pic 12

Nice artwork at north end of grain elevators at Vinton St.
jun pic 13

Looking south from Vinton St. towards I-80.
jun pic 14

Links to previous South Omaha Trail reports:
March 17, 2015
February 25, 2015 construction overview

How to position your bike to change the light

May 4th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Commuting | Tags:

I found some slides for different types of stop light detectors and those that are paved over. In general, one needs to have their wheel and/or bottom bracket over the cut in the pavement for best detection.

If the stop light doesn’t change within 90 seconds, the detector is deficient and a person biking may go through the intersection when they will not interfere with a person driving a vehicle on the cross street. In other words, treat the stop light as a two-way stop sign with the cross street having the right-of-way.

Note: A police officer seeing you ‘run’ the red light may still issue a ticket. You would need to contact the county clerk to dismiss the ticket, or go before a judge to dismiss the ticket.

California Association of BicycleOrganizations

California Association of BicycleOrganizations

DualChase.com

DualChase.com

DualChase.com

DualChase.com

Complete Streets Policy needs feedback by Friday, May 1

April 28th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Advocacy | Tags: , , ,

Please take five minutes to read through the two page Complete Streets Policy draft.

Please contact info@omahabydesign.org with any suggestions.

I have included my suggestions below. If you agree with any, please write in your own words and send them to the email above.

Thank you,
Dale Rabideau

Dear Sir:

I have the following suggestions for improving the Complete Streets Policy:

A.6. Complete Streets requires appropriate performance measures.
A.6.2 Linear miles of new/restriped on-street bicycle facilities

First, I suggest the need to measure new/repaired street furniture such as bollards, planters, curbs, directional signage, etc. for protected on-street bike lanes.
Bike facilities consist of more than putting down painted lines and sharrows on streets.

Second, expanding the Omaha Area Metro Trail System should be included in complete streets because these act as “streets” for people who walk or ride bike. We don’t segregate funding for roads based on why a person is driving their car on them. Likewise, the Metro Trail System should not be conceptualized as just a recreational trail but as a non-motorized ‘street’. As such, the City, County, and State should contribute a percentage from the transportation budget to this non motorized street system.

A.1. Complete Streets serve all users and modes.
The City shall develop the community’s streets and right-of-way …

Since the OAMTS is a public right-of-way, it should be considered with motorized streets for the movement of people from one place to another. For non motorized transport, the Metro Trail System should be conceived of as the backbone or ‘limited access’ highway for people who move by walking or biking.

Think about how many people like to live on a connection to a ‘limited access’ motor highway for commuting. The OAMTS can reach along creeks and railroad lines to Benson, Cunningham Lake, Bennington, Valley, Elkhorn, Gretna, Springfield, Ralston, La Vista, Papillion, South Omaha.
See this map on OAMTS gaps:
Omaha Area Meto Trail System gaps

Taking our cue from nature where tributaries add to the major Papillion Watershed creeks; where possible, these tributaries should have non motorized streets to reach out via the lowest grade available into the surrounding bluffs and hills. This is how people traveled on foot and horse back before mechanized transportation vehicles removed the need to base routes on the horses’ or person’s energy output needed to change elevation.

C. Exceptions
I suggest a member from the Mayor’s Active Living Advisory Committee should be included with Director of Public Works, Director of Planning, Director of Parks in order to write up an Exception to this Policy. Reasons for this suggestion: 1) There needs to be input from a person who moves around the city by walking or riding a bike in order to see how the exception would affect non motorized users. 2) Having such a non motorized advocate would provide cover from public discontent over any exception.

Thank you for considering these suggestion.
Thank you for the many hours of work already put into the policy draft.

Sincerely,
Dale Rabideau
Omaha Bikes

Earth Day Omaha 2015 – Bike Corral and Bike Dust Off

April 13th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Uncategorized

Saturday, April 25 in Elmwood Park

Bike Corral pre-build

Bike Corral pre-build

2014 bike corral

2014 bike corral

Omaha Bikes is providing free parking for bikes and a mechanic station for those who want a bike safety check over. We can make minor adjustments to brakes and shifting, and will have some tubes to fix flat tires.

Please use the corral to park your bike and walk around the different tents and enjoy the stage speakers and performers. Car parking will be very difficult, rather drive to a parking area along the Keystone Trail and ride your bike to Pacific St and then east to Elmwood Park entrance. Bicycle path is available the entire way.

We need volunteers to help: There are two hour slots for valet parking – we tie ticket to bike and give ticket to person; and two hour slots for bike check overs.

Please click here to register to help.

For more info on Earth Day Omaha – click here.

South Omaha Trail – March Update

March 17th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Trails | Tags:

Here is an overview of the South Omaha Trail construction zone. The pictures start in the upper right corner and focus on the 90+ degree turn just south of I-80, with the last handful being just west of 42nd St.

bike route map snip

Current end of the Field Club Trail at Vinton St. Looking South along the West side of the elevator.
mar vinton st

The original elevator building for loading and unloading grain. If you look closely, the white painted silos are a slightly smaller diameter than the additions to the North and South.
mar elevator

The I-80 bridge.
mar I80 bridge

mar I80 bridge 2

mar I80 bridge 3

mar pic 1

Looking SouthWest.
mar pic 2

Parked car on top of I-80 bridge to get this SouthWest shot from above.
mar I80

Contrasted above pic with this one to get a good idea how big an area this turn will encompass.
mar pic 03

This is the blueprints for this turn. Notice how the trail winds around in order to check/slow one’s speed and provide a longer climb.

Zone I

Zone I

mar pic 04

mar pic 05

Looking towards South and culvert under RR tracks.
mar pic 06

1906 – this culvert has almost silted shut from I-80 construction and expansion over the years.
mar pic 08

Looking North – a 108′ long, 30″ culvert will a path under the trail for water from along I-80 to the RR culvert. The trail will be about 18′ above the culvert. The bank drop off will be 1′ down for every 3′ away from the trail.
mar pic 07

mar pic 09

mar pic 10

From the top looking East.
mar pic 11

mar pic 12

mar pic 14

Putting up black construction barriers to catch dirt, etc. Trail will be along right barrier.
mar pic 13

36th and D Sts looking West. All trees and stumps are removed.
mar pic 15

D St looking East to 36th St.
mar pic 16

Looking West at 42nd St bridge. Standing approximately where trail will come off side of bank.
mar pic 17

Trail will be 18′ above RR track under the bridge, which is approximately 6′ above the side support between the pillars.
mar pic 18

Just West of 42nd St bridge.
mar pic 19

Clearing trees and stumps before filling in trail corridor with dirt.
mar pic 20

mar pic 21

mar pic 22

Notice the old telephone pole at an angle.
mar pic 23

Another pole. I like pieces that provide historical note.
mar pic 24

Click here for first report and overview of the South Omaha Trail Phase 2.

South Omaha Trail Overview

February 25th, 2015 | Author: Dale Rabideau
Category: Trails | Tags:

The final 1.5 miles connecting the South Omaha Trail to the Field Club Trail is scheduled to be completed by February 2016, though with good weather, December 2015 is a likely opening date. The initial phase from Karen Park and the Keystone Trail to 45th St and G St was completed a couple years ago. Unfortunately, the City of Omaha never budgeted for completing this crucial link between the Keystone Trail and Midtown/Downtown Omaha. Fortunately, we can thank the Papio-Missouri NRD and District 6 Jim Thompson for stepping up to the plate and providing $5M of the people’s money to complete this multi-user infrastructure for human powered movement.

A snip from the Omaha Bikes Bike Route Map reveals the extent of the trail under construction in orange.

snip from Omaha Bikes Bike Route Map

Omaha Bikes Bike Route Map

The blue prints have broken the construction into 10 zones labeled A-J.

blue print overview

blue print overview

Current East terminus at 45th and G St.

Current East terminus

Current East terminus

Zone A
The trail up to the F St bridge is approximately Zone A. Though little grade work needs to be done, ‘A’ will be the last zone to be completed before opening the trail. The zones will be worked on independent from one another. In other words, the trail will not be constructed from zone A-J in a linear fashion.

Zone A

Zone A

Zone A

Zone A

Zone B
Zone B has a steep embankment on the South-East side of the trail.

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

The previous picture is looking down about a 30′ drop to the bottom. The dashed line in the blue print below is current grade, the solid black line is final trail grade. Approximately 15′ of dirt from where I was standing in the previous picture will be pushed into the low area to bring that up to final grade, in addition to many cubic yards of dirt. The final grade up and down this zone is about 5%.

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone B

Zone C
Now we are in Zone C and near the 42nd St overpass. There will be a retaining wall and fence on both sides of the trail where it parallels the railroad track.

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone C

Zone D
This is where the trail will come on the former storage area. A parking lot trailhead will have room for 6-7 cars.

Zone D

Zone D

Zone D

Zone D

Zone D

Zone D

At this point, the trail crosses to the South side of D St. This is the entrance to a concrete recycling plant. Large trucks on to and off of D St. There are good sight lines. The trucks slow down to turn in and stop before pulling out. The trail will have a stop sign and trail traffic will yield to D St traffic.

Zone D

Zone D

Zone E

Zone E

Zone E

D St’s south curb will be move north 5′. The trail will narrow from 10′ to 8′ along D St so property owner’s will loose no property. A wooden fence will separate the trail from property owners to the south.

Zone E

Zone E

Zone E

Zone E

Zone E

Zone E

Zone F
At this point, we enter zone F where the trail returns to 10′ wide, a retaining wall with fence will be constructed on the south side at the beginning and end, while dirt will be brought in for a 1 to 3 shoulder grade to the north.

Zone F

Zone F

Zone F

Zone F

This is the middle section at the end of 36th Ave where there will be no retaining wall.

Zone F

Zone F

The next two pictures show the general area for the 90 degree turn along side 36th St.

Zone F

Zone F

Zone F

Zone F

Zone G
Going north along 36th St.

Zone G

Zone G

Zone G

Zone G

At this point, the trail will narrow to 4′ and use the sidewalk on the bridge. The rules will state that people must dismount and walk bike by one another. Very precise driving between two people biking could pass. The choice I will consider is to check traffic on 36th St prior to the parking sign and then jump into the northbound lane before the water basin and view of south bound traffic is restricted.

Zone G

Zone G

Zone G

Zone G

Concrete recycle plant to the west. At this point, one will really notice the noise from the plant and I-80 from here to the grain elevator.

Zone G

Zone G

The trail will have stop signs for trail users before crossing 36th St. One must check traffic carefully. I believe the speed limit is 35 mph but cars going north down the hill onto the bridge and over tend to be going faster and are slightly hidden because the bridge bows up in the middle and hides cars farther south. This is another reason to have jumped onto the north going lane before the bridge. You have possession of the lane and can signal slowing and right turn at the trail crossing.

Zone G

Zone G

Zone H
Zone H has the steepest grade of any zone – 9% down to the flat. The trail will have fence on both sides through this zone, probably something like the section at the west end of the South Omaha Trail going around the Kiewit construction lot.

Zone H

Zone H

Zone H

Zone H

The construction right of way is between the tires of the trailer left to the end of the fence. I took a poor picture of the blue prints above so I am guessing the the trail will be along the I-80 side.

Zone H

Zone H

Zone H

Zone H

Zone I
I did not study the blue prints before shooting the pictures. As you notice, zone I has the trail going south before heading north under the bridge. All my pictures going down to the tracks will be left of the trail.

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Notice on the grade lines, about 18 feet of dirt is being brought in so a continual 5% grade will take one down to the underpass.

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone I

Zone J
Zone J goes from the underpass, along the grain elevators to Vinton St and the current south terminus of the Field Club Trail. I would guess that the underpass will be where the trail changes names.

Zone J

Zone J

Zone I

Zone I

And a final look south through the underpass. Maybe you can make out the work of aspiring artists in the area.

It is difficult to overstate the importance of the South Omaha Trail connection from the Keystone Trial to the Field Club Trail. There are only three at-grade street crossings – 60th St with the Hawk light, D St, and 36th St. For those who want to get downtown with the least interaction with motor vehicles and the least hill climbing, the South Omaha Trail will be our best option!

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