Meeting Summary, January 12, 2023

Attending: Hultgren, Clark, Bloom, Manizza, Bill Thorne (guest)

The meeting began at approximately 7:10 pm in the lobby of the Transportation Center.

Bill Thorne explained the Cycling Without Age (CWA)program that he is interested in getting started in Mansfield. The program gives bike rides to elderly or movement-challenged adults in a special bicycle powered by trained volunteer cyclists (“pilots”). In CT there are CWA programs in Mystic/Stonington and West Hartford. Bill will forward links to descriptions of the program to be sent out to our email list to inform and check for interest.

The “report card” summarizing the League’s comments on the Town’s BFC renewal application was handed out and discussed. Note that the comments mimic much of what is already in the updated draft of the Mansfield Bicycle/Pedestrian Master Plan, notably that the Town should hire or appoint a bicycle/active transportation coordinator, complete the bike/ped plan and budget for its implementation, gather more cycling data, and make a significant effort in educating both children and adults in bike riding and bike safety.

Hultgren said that he and Todd O’Keefe had good success in asking our business members to contribute towards funding the 1st year budget for the 4th grade bicycle education program. He also said that it appears that the program will qualify for a matching grant from SustainableCT. A grant kick-off virtual meeting will be scheduled in the next couple of weeks. The grant requires that the funds be spent within 1 year, so the timing of the fundraising activities has to jive with the actual start of the program.

Manniza said that the 2023 Ride of Silence will be held in the middle of Bike Week/Month on Wed May 17th. Building on the success of the 2022 ride, he said he hopes to attract many more riders (50 to 100?) this year. We’ll put the date out to our mailing list starting now, and periodically between now and the event.

The updated draft of the Bike/Ped Master Plan is hopefully being reviewed by the new Town Planner. The DPW Director (John Carrington) has been asked to check with her (Jennifer Kaufman) on its status.

Clark and Hultgren said they would meet next week to begin looking at Town/UConn bike route coordination.

The meeting concluded at 8:15pm.

Lon Hultgren, Secretary Treasurer