The coalition has earmarked $3,500 for support of bicycle advocacy, infrastructure and safety.
Three specific programs have been identified, and funding has been set aside to support them. The programs are Children’s Education, South Bend Bike Lanes, and the LaSalle Trail.
For two years, a team of cyclists has been piloting an education program for third graders. In this program, the team has worked with the school system to conduct classes. Before a child can participate, they must have a helmet, and that is the main expense in the training. Funding has come from a number of local and statewide organizations. The BMC has set aside $1,500 to help support and grow this program in 2010.
A portion of an abandoned railroad has been acquired by the St. Joseph County Parks system, which is looking to develop it as a multi-use greenway which would connect with St. Patrick’s Park. It is part of a larger project, called the IN-MI River Valley Trail, which would run from Niles to Mishawaka. The BMC has earmarked $1,000 for financial support of this project in 2010 or as soon as it is needed. For more information on the IN-MI Trail, see http://www.swmpc.org/inmitrail.asp.
South Bend Bike Lanes.
The city of South Bend has been adding bike routes and lanes throughout the city. There has been some push-back from a few residents who feel the lanes are unwarranted. They feel inconvenienced by removal of parking spaces, and that their tax dollars are being wasted. The BMC has earmarked $1,500 in 2010 to defray bicycle infrastructure expenses incurred by the city. The coalition feels that this funding will show that the lanes have strong community support, and will show critics that all the money for bike facilities is not coming from tax dollars.
BMC is accepting donations.
Anyone who would like to lend financial support to one of these programs is encouraged to make a donation to the Bike Michiana Coalition. Simply click the “PayPal Donate” button. In the PayPal Donate window, there will be a spot for you to tell us which project to earmark for your donation. The BMC is a certified 501(c)(3) organization thus your donation may be tax deductible.