CONNECTING COMMUNITIES THROUGH GRANTS
The Foundation this year supported work in three Morris and Somerset county communities that will make it easier and more enticing to bicycle instead of drive. The communities — Morris Township, Mendham Borough and Bernards Township—encourage cycling through their planning and work of local advocates. The Foundation’s support provided funds for bike racks in key locations such as parks, pools and downtown streets so that residents who elect to cycle know they’ll have a place to park. Experience, and research, suggests that well over half the people in a community are interested in riding bikes, but they’re concerned about safety. Studies in the US and Europe prove that there is a “safety in numbers” effect at work with cycling. The more cyclists on the road, the safer it is for them. Accidents with cars drop as drivers come to expect riders sharing the road.
A bicycle is a great way tour a hometown, go to a local park, do an errand or commute to a train or bus. Communities with more bicycles also have fewer car-bicycle accidents.
The Morris Area Freewheelers Foundation Community Bicycle Rack (CBR) Grants are awarded to municipalities that identify locations where a hop on-hop off bicycle rack could encourage the connection of neighborhoods to local parks and cultural centers, schools, public transit and local shopping areas.
The Foundation is also committed to helping cyclists and motorists learn to share the road responsibly and safely. Each award requires the grantee to mount a safe cycling tips sign on or near each of the bicycle racks. The Foundation supplies the signs, in consultation with the grantee.
The Foundation believes that cycling in the suburbs and small towns or NJ can be just as viable as cycling down the shore or in our cities. The CBR grants provide the parking link when residents take advantage of improvements like cycle-friendly trails and paths , protected bicycle lanes and designated “bicycles may use full lane” signage.