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Encinitas mayor among participants in Regional Bike Summit

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San Diego City Council member Georgette Gomez was among the elected officials who took part in the first summit in 2018.
(Courtesy of the Bike Coalition)

The second San Diego Regional Bike Summit will be held Feb. 6-8, featuring local elected officials, engineers, planners, educators and other advocates who are working to promote bicycling, along with safety and infrastructure policies that encourage more potential riders.

“I think we’re making progress,” said Andy Hanshaw, executive director of the nonprofit San Diego County Bicycle Coalition. “We’d certainly like to see it accelerated.”

In addition to infrastructure improvements, the coalition also promotes bicycling as a way to help the region meet its climate goals by reducing the time local drivers spend in their cars. One of the organization’s current campaigns is the Lomas Santa Fe Corridor Improvement Project, an effort by the city of Solana Beach to revamp a stretch of Lomas Santa Fe, which will include new bike lanes.

Hanshaw, who has been the executive director since 2011, said he thinks the summit will be “bigger and better” than the first one, which was held in 2018.

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Featured speakers at the summit will include Bruce Appleyard, an associate professor of city planning and urban design at San Diego State University; Nick Buck, who works in the parks and rec department for the city of Encinitas; and Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear, who voted with the City Council last fall to approve widened bicycle lanes along Pacific Coast Highway, among other improvements for local cyclists. It will be her first time participating in the summit.

“The information sharing that happens at events like that, and insights on how to make progress, I find incredibly valuable,” Blakespear said.

Some of the highlights scheduled for the three-day event include group discussions on current trends, policies and projects to advance bicycling throughout the greater San Diego area, with topics such as e-bikes, open street events and community-based campaigns. The summit will also host a San Diego mayoral candidate forum on Feb. 7 and a few bicycle rides on Feb. 8.

Breakout session will explore topics such as San Diego’s proximity to the U.S.-Mexico border and how it impacts transportation in the region, discussions with transportation planners and researchers, how local planners accommodate drivers who switch to commuting by bicycle, and statewide and regional transportation policies.

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The summit will be held at multiple venues, including the Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego History Museum, San Diego Museum of Art and Panama 66. Registration to attend the full conference costs $100. For more information, visit sdbikecoalition.org.


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